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Street Fighter 6 Review: The Greatest Street Fighter Game?

Femi Famutimi
13 min

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Street Fighter 6 Review: The Greatest Street Fighter Game?
I had the distinct honor of trying out Capcom's latest fighting game early and here are some of my thoughts.
Street Fighter 6 Review

Street Fighter 6 is the latest fighting game released by industry legends, Capcom. The company has a track record of churning out some of the most iconic games in the space including classics such as Resident Evil and Devil May Cry. They have personally been one of my favorite gaming companies, so you can imagine the excitement, when it was revealed in 2022, that Street Fighter 6 was in the works and would be released this year. 

At the time, Street Fighter V was perhaps at its best point, but the game has always been divisive mostly because of its disastrous launch. Street Fighter 6, from the get-go, was all about doing things differently and this was clear by the amount of communications between the game developers and the fanbase.

As the game’s release date came closer, DashFight was granted the rare privilege to try out the game and I was more than happy to get my hands on it. I also got to test some of the features that have been advertised. So, if you didn’t know it already, this is a review of Street Fighter 6.  

When Capcom announced their much anticipated game, they talked mainly about 3 game modes: World Tour, Battle Hub, and Fighting Ground.

World Tour

World Tour mode was one of the most exciting as it gave the players a chance to be immersed in Street Fighter’s story. World Tour mode presented itself as an open world with various mission, fights, and story beats. Battle Hub is a huge lobby with several features where the community can meet virtually and play games together. Finally, Fighting Ground is more or less what you’d expect from the standard fighting game where you had the story mode, versus, training, extreme battle and so on. 

World Tour mode was first introduced in the Street Fighter Alpha games, but that simply involved a few fights scattered around the world. Meanwhile, World Tour Mode in Street Fighter 6 is an expansive universe that invites you to get to know some of the iconic scenes within the Street Fighter cosmos. I got to play a bit of it in the demo mode, but had very limited access. When trying out World Tour mode this time, I was able to get a lot further into the story and first off, one of the most amazing things is how your created avatar is incorporated into the story. Too often, games tend to make us sideline characters who are simply observing what is going on in the story. Here, we are inextricably linked to what is happening in Metro City and around the world. As trainees under Luke, you go around finding masters, learning from them, while also investigating the weird actions surrounding your partner and colleague, Bosch

World Tour mode was so much fun and Metro City is a zany place to be. The characters are colorful, vibrant, and always ready for a fight. The premise upon which Metro City is built, which is that of a ‘warrior’ city where everyone through years of terror and oppression are in love with the fight, makes no sense on a normal day, but it works for Street Fighter 6. 

A game which is about understanding the true meaning of strength, SF6 gives you different interpretations of strength. Strength to protect those dear to you, strength to become the strongest ever, strength to make yourself a better person than you were yesterday. The game leaves you to decide what that means, but it provides you with a colorful cast of characters who help you on the journey. This journey is especially poignant for newbie players who might not be familiar with how Street Fighter works. As a newbie picking  up the controller and running around Metro City, you get the feeling that the characters are trying to help you get better at playing as you learn fundamentals and other important skills while taking on opponents within the game. But, somehow, it also feels like the game is training you to be better even as a human being. 

As I interacted with more citizens within Metro City, I came to appreciate their little stories. From the weird hero that stands on the rooftop looking out for crime, to the older practitioners of martial arts learning under Chun li, everyone you meet in the game is seeking strength in one way or another and the message seems to be that we are all on this journey together. 

The incorporation of some RPG elements is really welcome and the idea that there are specific actions you are encouraged to take in every fight with the promise of a reward afterwards is a very well thought out one. There are also easter eggs littered all over the city and chests you can open which encourage exploration. World Tour is an incredible addition to Street Fighter, and the direction of the story is intriguing. I, for one, cannot wait to know more about the secrets of the world around me. 

However, if you were hoping for a sprawling world reminiscent of Legend of Zelda or Horizon Zero Dawn, you are sorely mistaken as the world of Street Fighter is not that large. It is also clear that some areas are given more attention than others with places like Metro City being this huge space to explore while other locations like Rome restrict your movement to one area. This doesn’t take anything away from what the game has to offer as in the places where there is adequate attention, it is beautiful, whimsical, and bursting with heart. 

Battle Hub

Everywhere you look, Street Fighter 6’s messaging is consistent— This game is about community. But it is not some closed off community that people can gate-keep, or a clique for the strong, but rather a community that is looking for everyone to join in. 

The Battle Hub encapsulates this perfectly. Even when I was alone in the hub, I kept thinking of Momonga from Overlord as I made my way around the space.

Battle Hub is sure to be the most popular aspect of Street Fighter 6. The arcade cabinets scattered everywhere, the viewing areas, the retro gaming section, and all the little shops make the Battle Hub feel like the arcades back in the day. There is a screen that shows the players on the highest streaks which calls back that one dude at the arcades who everyone knew and no one could beat and who made you practise hard so you're able to compete with them. 

The to spectate matches are an arcade cabinet also really heightens the community aspect and the sight of several avatars around a couple of cabinets to watch to people play and being able to cheer while at it is frankly heartwarming. The chat feature means you can talk to anyone, including pro players who you might run into while in Battle Hub. 

The only retro games available to me were Street Fighter II, Final Fight, and Super Puzzle Fighter and I played them all. As someone who remembers Street Fighter II, playing it again felt so good, and having a shot at Puzzle Fighter, and Final Fight made me quite nostalgic.

More games will certainly be added and I look forward to trying them all out. Yet, the feeling of being in Battle Hub is even more than that. It’s an area where you can be unabashedly you. The avatar creation is incredibly generous and you now have a place to show off your looks, hang out with friends and take on new challenges.  

Running around Battle Hub alone was fascinating as I could just picture in my mind’s  eye all the fun battles, tournaments, and all the other shenanigans that will take place there. Unfortunately, I can’t say much else about it because I just didn’t get to experience it when people were around. But, I must say, I look forward to it.

Fighting Ground

Fighting Ground is essentially the entirety of Street Fighter V. This isn’t a diss on the game, but rather praise for how much more Street Fighter 6 added to the player experience. In fact, Fighting Ground is even more expansive than other iterations of the game as it contains extreme mode and we’ll be getting an arcade mode from launch unlike another game we know (looking at you Street Fighter V). I’m sorry, I just had to sneak that one in. 

For anyone who has followed Street Fighter 6 so far, you probably know about the modes available under Fighting Ground. So here I’m just going to talk about how the game feels. 

Guys, Street Fighter 6 feels great to play. The most remarkable thing is how it deals with Modern Controls. Depending on who you ask, Modern Controls are either the best thing since sliced bread, or the one last condition for inevitable world destruction. But I think Modern Controls are brilliant. The options it makes available to the player are deep and varied while the limited damage output ensures that it isn’t too powerful. I have been playing Street Fighter since Street Fighter II Turbo, but I still consider myself something of a noob and getting into Modern Controls was easy, but when I went into the combo trials and realized that there were combo trials for classic AND Modern Controls, I was blown away. The auto combos Modern Controls allow you to do are just a tip of the iceberg, and there is so much you can do with this control scheme that it is frankly ridiculous. SF6 feels smooth and it was great to see that all the fun stuff wasn’t locked behind V-Trigger

After playing around with Modern Controls, I realized why Dynamic Controls were added. I initially thought that modern controls would hold your hand and enable you to play like a zombie, but it turned out to be anything but. As I improved slowly, I started to notice the places where using classic controls would be to my advantage while also picking on some of the many nuances of Modern Controls. Again the message is clear— this game is for everyone. 

The story mode also adds to the lore of Street Fighter and while we can’t get into any real details here, I think we can safely say that Street Fighter is taking their story a lot more seriously now. I want to take a moment to talk about JP. He has been impressive ever since we got to see him, but more than that, it seems we finally have a villain that can match M. Bison in stature and menace. I never quite liked Gill or Seth as villains, they just felt a little weird,  but JP? He’s terrifying while also impressive in a charismatic way. 

While I didn’t test it myself, I think Street Fighter 6 should be commended for the accessibility options it has provided. With these options, people who might normally not have been able to play the game, can now experience it for themselves, with their friends, and the ones whom they hold dear. 

I didn’t have nearly as much time with the game as I would have liked, but I can say with certainty that SF6 was made with a lot of love and care. This is a game that has a lot of heritage behind it, old characters that we have grown up with, and new characters that we will love because they are fun to play and have compelling stories. Every newbie has ties to what came before, and in that way, they don’t feel completely new to us. 

The game is gorgeously animated, and is just generally a delight to get into. 

In closing, Street Fighter has always felt like it leaned in one way or the other. For instance, Street Fighter III was a technical masterpiece that required immense skill to play. The Alpha series were a lot kinder to beginners and some might have discredited it for this. But, Street Fighter 6 is a perfect balance between both worlds. I can’t wait to watch the tournaments and see people use characters at the highest level, but, I also can’t wait to run around Metro City, Nayshall, and try out new characters.

I WANT to play SF6 and perhaps that is the most important thing. Street Fighter 6 isn’t a game simply inviting you to watch the best do it, it encourages you to also seek strength in whatever way you can understand it. It wants you to get better. Street Fighter 6 is a fantastic game. Will it replace Street Fighter II as the prize jewel in the series? Time will tell, but personally, I think it will.

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