Street Fighter V Arcade Edition
Reviewed on: PS4
Also available on PC
Street Fighter V (SF V), originally released in 2016, was not received well by fans or critics alike. While the fighting mechanics were very sound, the game lacked any real content and felt like the skeleton of a game. The roster consisted of only 16 fighters and the game didn't have many modes to play outside of online play. Capcom promised that the game would be updated later with significant content and with the Arcade Edition of SF V. They have finally delivered on that promise. Street Fighter V finally feels like a complete game, and it's right up there being one of the top contenders in the fighting game genre once again.
The Arcade Edition introduces a ton of new features to the game, such as an arcade mode that was absent in the original release, as well as the new extra battle/team battle modes, selectable V-triggers, a new user interface, and we also see the return of a certain old-school bonus game. Capcom has also re-balanced a few things and added a ton of polish. The Arcade Edition update comes in two forms. A full retail release is available to players who are completely new to the game. This version comes with the season one & two DLC characters, which puts the roster at 28 characters, as well as all the new modes and tweaks. Capcom has also made this update available for free to all gamers who have already purchased Street Fighter V. The catch? You still have to pay for all the DLC characters as they were released before this update. Even if you choose not to buy the extra characters, this update is certainly worth downloading and investing a lot of time in.
The new arcade that has been added impressed me more than I had anticipated. It's pretty standard stuff that all fighting game fans will be used to, but the amount of presentation that Capcom put into it is truly astonishing. You are presented with six different arcade options. Each one is themed after a particular Street Fighter game ranging from Street Fighter to Street Fighter V with Street Fighter Alpha thrown in for good measure. Each arcade ladder contains returning fighters sectioned into the games in which they first appeared. You can earn over 200 different endings for the characters in arcade mode. These endings are just a bit of text and an illustration, but a lot of the artwork is absolutely gorgeous and the collector in me wants to earn them all. Players can go to the gallery to check the unlock conditions for each ending. Conditions range from simply completing a path to actions such as getting a perfect score on the bonus stage. I absolutely loved the arcade mode. It made me feel extremely nostalgic as I've been playing Street Fighter since the early '90s. The characters' costumes even get altered to reflect their look at the time. I do have one major issue with the arcade mode though. You currently can't earn “Fight Money”, the game's currency, in arcade mode. You can use the “Fight Money” to buy items such as character colours and stages. With the option to buy all of those in the PlayStation Store I feel like Capcom is trying to make us feel like we need to spend money to unlock things faster. The arcade mode holds a ton of replay value, but the experience is hurt when you realize you won't be earning any money during that time. Hopefully, Capcom will patch this in a future update. I'm crossing my fingers.
Extra Battle & Team Battle
Extra Battle mode and Team Battle mode are two other new additions that come along with this hefty title update. Extra Battle offers timed exclusive challenges, such as fighting and defeating Shin Akuma and allows you to earn experience, “Fight Money”, and premium exclusive costumes. This mode is another feature that will keep me coming back to the title.
Team Battle is a mode that was last seen in Ultra Street Fighter IV. It is a highly customizable mode intended for a crowd. You can pit two teams of up to five people against each other and alter the rules of the matches in some interesting ways. You can control how much vitality players recover between matches, the format of the matches (elimination or best of), and a few other things. You don't need to have a crowd to enjoy this mode as it can be played against the CPU. I found this mode to be great for trying out multiple characters in one training session.
The V-Trigger moves in Street Fighter V have always been a good way to turn the tide in a battle that isn't going your way. Once activated some characters gain access to a power-up for a limited amount of time, while others perform a single move that can easily turn the tide of battle. The Arcade Edition update brings a new V-Trigger move to every character. This can totally change how you view a character as these new moves can totally change the strategies you use when playing as someone. This is sure to shake up the competitive community that exists around the game. You'll want to dive into the games training mode to truly explore the possibilities of these new moves. Speaking of training mode, Capcom has added a wonderful feature for those that really want to dig deep into the fighting system. The training mode now offers to show you frame data for every single move in the game. They even colour coded it so that you can see when you are vulnerable during certain moves. For anyone that wants to get into the competitive realm online or the average Joe that just wants to improve his game, this feature will surely help.
Is The Game Worth My Time?
In short, absolutely! Street Fighter V Arcade Edition is an absolutely gorgeous fighting game with high production values across the board. This is the most accessible that the Street Fighter franchise has ever been. It's great for newcomers and pros alike. It contains an extremely high amount of replayability both in the single player realm and online. The netcode is very tight for online play and the number of unlockables will have you busy for weeks on end with new stuff coming in the future. Capcom has already released details on the third season of DLC for the game too. They are bringing back fan favourites such as Sakura, Blanka, and Sagat. The game is not full price for those that want the retail version, and if you already have the standard version of the game you can't go wrong with this free update. The only flaw I can find with the game is the “Fight Money” problem during arcade and it's possible for Capcom to patch this in a future update. This is the game that Street Fighter V should have been from the very beginning. I hope Capcom has learned a lesson for the inevitable Street Fighter VI. Hopefully next time we won't have to wait two years for a complete game.
If you were on the fence about Street Fighter V, or are a gamer that swore it off due to lack of content, I suggest you give it a second look. Street Fighter is back as one of the top contenders in the fighting game genre, and I don't think you should miss out.