Capcom announces Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition – the update it said would never happen
Capcom does what it said it would never do, and Leon heads out into Lovecraftian space…
Remember how Capcom – rather surprisingly – stated before release that Street Fighter V was going to break with the series’ long-standing and long-controversial tradition of distinct, upgraded, Super Hyper Mega Ultra Turbo special editions? Remember how it committed up front to bringing Street Fighter kicking and screaming (and also punching, and kicking again) into the modern, digital age of persistent online platforms and regularly updated, evolving games? Yeah, it turns out that it hasn’t quite worked out that way. But put down the flaming torches and pitchforks. We reckon this is actually a good thing. For starters, Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition – much of which won’t cost you anything if you’ve already bought into the current version of the game – is a significantly meaty update. Bestowing all 28 of Street Fighter V’s season one and two characters out of the box (or download), it also delivers them in newly upgraded form. In a move similar to Ultra Street Fighter IV’s game-changing addition of secondary Ultra Combo attacks, Street Fighter V is giving every fighter in the roster a second V-Trigger. Knowing how fundamental those triggers are to the current strategic flow of the game, it easy to believe that this change alone will make for a radically new game.
As for new modes and functions, in a nutshell this is the Street Fighter V that should have launched in 2016. There’s finally a fully-fledged Arcade mode. Actually, scratch that. There are six of them, each seemingly themed around a previous game in the series, from the very first Street Fighter all the way to Street Fighter V, taking in Alpha along the way for good measure. As well as offering different arcade paths and historically-themed story content, they’ll apparently take your play performance into account too, in order to deliver over 100 different endings.
Then there’s the Extra Battle mode. The precise details aren’t entirely clear yet, but this one sounds like a series of monthly themed fight challenges with special modifiers. It appears you might have to buy in with your in-game Fight Money, but completion will bag you a special, premium costume. And with Rashid already on show dressed as Viewtiful Joe, they could be pretty special indeed. Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition releases on PS4 and PC on 16 January at £39.99, and everything bar the DLC characters will come as a free update to existing players.
“In a nutshell, this is the Street Fighter V that should have launched in 2016”
But is this the betrayal of a promise? Sort of, but it’s happening for the best reasons. Following a messy, content-light release, Street Fighter V has evolved into a brilliant, brilliant fighting game. But to the uninitiated, it’s never quite managed to shake off the stink of that launch. A rerelease in the form of Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition is a smart way of drawing a line under the bad times and introducing – and celebrating – what the game is now for a new audience, free of preconceptions. And coming for free, as a default upgrade for the Street Fighter loyal, it’s a really healthy move too. Capcom’s SFV plan might have changed, but its modern, player-minded approach hasn’t.
R Mika’s V-Trigger looks to send in tag partner Nadeshiko to run interference with a huge (non-kayfabe) chair-shot.