Posted on 01 Mar 2016 by Sawyer Scherbenske

Street Fighter V

The Defence

Developer: Capcom
Publisher: Capcom
Genre: Fighting
Platform: Consoles, PC
Review copy: No
Release date: 16 Feb 2016

The Prosecution

OS: Linux, Windows
CPU: Intel Core i3 3.6 GHz
AMD equivalent
VGA: Nvidia GeForce 480
AMD equivalent
DirectX: 11
Controller: Full
Mod Support: No
VR: No
FOV Slider: No
FPS Lock: 120+
OS: Linux, Windows
CPU: Intel Core i5 3.5 GHz
AMD FX 4.4 GHz
VGA: Nvidia GeForce 960
AMD Radeon R7 370
DirectX: 11
Controller: Full
Mod Support: No
VR: No
FOV Slider: No
FPS Lock: 120+

The Case

Street Fighter. It’s the series that invented the quarter-circle forward and has managed to beat out competitors for more than two decades. Of those two decades, Street Fighter IV lasted almost one of them by itself with its span of 7 long years, but its time has finally come to be replaced with SF V. There’s been lots of talk about bugginess, censorship, microtransactions, slow gameplay, and a myriad of other issues, but even through all of that, Street Fighter V is the hottest new fighter on the market for a good reason.

The Trial

SF IV was Capcom’s most successful fighter ever, so it makes sense that SF V feels a lot like its predecessor. Focus attacks and Ultras are out, and they’ve been replaced with V-Trigger and R. Mika’s booty, but SF V is still a 3-button fighter where you kick, punch, and grapple your way to victory on a 2d plane against opponents from around the world. In other words, there’s some change, but the fundamentals are still as classic as they come.

Zangief is still a tank-sized mound of grappling muscle, Dhalsim is still annoying and floaty as ever, and Ryu still has more hadokens in him than Preston Garvey has settlement quests, but there’re a few very welcome newcomers too like Rashid and Necali that mix things up just enough. Not only that but everyone including the newcomers are available to play as soon as you boot the game…for now.

Your character options range from Street Fighter staples, old fan favorites, and total newcomers.

Capcom plans for SF V to live just as long, if not longer, than SF IV did, so they’ll be constantly adding in new characters, new patches, and new costumes for years to come. There’s a $30 Season Pass for a reason, and it’s because there’s going to be an unbelievable amount of content added to this game over the next year. Six DLC character, a full story mode, and 32 costumes. The game is out, but there’s a lot more of it to come still, but only if there’s still more to come from your wallet.

To be fair, there is an in-game currency called “Fight Money” that you can accumulate just by playing matches, and Capcom has said that all the extra content will be available to get through this in-game money, but nobody knows how expensive each costume, let alone a full character, will be. If you choose to go the Fight Money route, you’ll be spending a lot of time in survival mode and SF V ‘s other just awful offline content. These offline modes are phenomenal for getting rich in Fight Money, but they’re all as bare-bones as it gets.

There’s a training mode of course, but there’s also story and survival modes. Story mode is just a few pathetically easy matches with static art laid behind some text as brief hints of plot are dumped. Survival Mode isn’t much better since it trades the limited art and plot for grinding against wave after wave of easy enemy AI’s with no difficulty slider to adjust only for difficulty to spike each ten matches. These offline modes are totally optional of course, but for the casual players who don’t want to jump online right away or just want to learn a fighting game you might be better off with another fighter. It’s obvious that SF V wants to be friendly to new players since it took the steps of largely removing charge moves and one-frame links, but without a proper tutorial mode or at least more single-player content there’s just not much there for the new player.

Ryu is prepared for SFV, but other people are still hesitant to pick it up.

But judging a fighting game on its offline content is like judging a Call of Duty on its realism; the only thing that really matters is the online fighting right? And luckily, the online is solid. Lag is rare, matches come just as fast as other fighters like Mortal Kombat X, and the ranking seems to actually work. Right now the biggest issues are the lobbies which only work when they want to and the lack of a tournament mode, but knowing Capcom, that’s not going to last long.

The Verdict

Street Fighter V is failing in its attempt to casualize the fighting game experience through offline content for new players, but it’s still one of the best fighters on the market and a worthy successor to Street Fighter IV. V-Trigger is a fun new addition, and both the new and returning characters play brilliantly into their respective roles, making SF V the most personality filled Street Fighter game yet. Despite some early buginess and sinister DLC plans from Capcom, SF V is still as punchy as ever and is only going to get punchier as new world warriors are introduced or changed in the upcoming years. In the end, Street Fighter V offers a satisfying new home for gamers to brutalize each other in.

Case Review

  • Simple to Learn: Anyone can jump on and find a simple combo, but the skill cap is high, offering lots of nuances for pro players to learn.

  • Lovable Characters: All 16 characters have a unique niche that they fill both gameplay and personality wise.

  • Very SF IV: SF V is very similar to its predecessor, not to 3rd strike or the Alpha series.

  • Updates: There’s going to be A LOT of DLC and patching for SF V, and you’ll have to grind or pay for most of it.

  • Barebones Single Player: If you buy SF V, buy it for the multiplayer, because the story and single player just aren’t worth that $60 price tag.

  • Bugs: At the time of review, lobbies only work when they want to and server disconnects happen, but Capcom has promised to fix these issues soon.

4 Score: 4/5
Street Fighter V is far from finished, but what's there is good.


  • Video: You can obviously adjust the resolution and brightness as well as customize picture quality tuning shadow, texture and effect quality along with setting AA, Post-Processing, and resolution scaling.
  • Audio: The typical BGM, Narrator, and master volume settings are all there like you'd expect. The one thing that is missing is the option to turn off the "ping" that happens every time you receive an invite, so streamers beware.
  • Language & Subtitles: For people who want their Japanese characters to speak Japanese and English to speak English, you can pick and choose who speaks what language, and then turn on subtitles to read along whenever Karin starts speaking her native language.
  • HUD: The HUD is fashionable enough to stand out when looked at but never distracting in game. If it is distracting, or if you just want a challenge, it's easy to turn them off individually or completely from the menu.
  • Controls: It's a fighter, so you're free to remap any button to anywhere on your controller whether it be a gamepad, a fight stick or a keyboard.
3 Score: 3/5

Street Fighter V is currently a polarizing title. If the only thing you care about is the ability to play 1v1 against other people online in the latest fighting game then SF V might be worth your money. The fighting gameplay is fantastic and the netcode is up to the task in minimizing lag and latency about as much as any game can. The game looks great and runs good on every configuration I threw at it from lower mid end to ultra-high end. However, if you care at all about single player content in your fighting games, proper support for arcade sticks and fight pads, a robust selection of modes, multi-person lobbies for online play, a diverse selection of stages to fight on, or a sizable roster of fighters to play with then Street Fighter V is going to disappoint you.

At the time of writing, native support of fight sticks and fightpads is non-existent if they are DirectInput (incidentally this is every stick and pad I have for PC that isn’t a 360 controller…for a game that isn’t available on Microsoft consoles?). There is no way to play the computer in a series of matches where you select the difficulty and number of rounds like a proper arcade mode would allow you to do, actually there is no arcade mode at all. There is no trial mode for learning basic to advanced character combos. The tutorial does not introduce you to even the most basic of fighting game concepts let alone character specific concepts. The multiplayer lobbies only support yourself and one other person, no multi-person lobbies and no spectators. There are only 16 characters and only 10 stages.

I could go on and on about what’s missing in this full priced release, but instead I’ll summarize it like this. Street Fighter V in its current state is at the absolute bottom of the list of all of fighting games I own. Even games that released 15 years ago have more content than what’s in Street Fighter V at launch. If you absolutely must play the newest fighting game on the market now, and only care to play online with one person at a time, then this is the game for you. If you care about just about any other facet of fighting games then it isn’t worth the asking price. Almost any other game in the genre offers more for less. Street Fighter and Capcom, once leaders in their fields, are now falling woefully behind the times and their contemporaries. Disappointing.

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