Street Fighter 6 PC Review: A Button Smasher’s Dream

Street Fighter 6 introduces a slew of changes in the game. A new story mode sets the game apart from its predecessor. Additionally, the 18-character roster looks amazing. Should you buy the game? Find out in our review.

Highlights
  • Street Fighter 6 will cost you Rs 3,999 on PC
  • The new game has a total of 18-characters
  • It managed to score 8.2 out of 10 in our review
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Straight off the bat, this is my first time playing a game from the Street Fighter franchise, for such elongated hours. Yes, I know, I’ve missed out on a lot of fun, but I guess it’s never too late. Street Fighter 6 — out now on PlayStation 5, PlayStation 4, Xbox Series X and Series S, and PC — looks to regain the trust of its fandom, while also luring in new-age button smashers.

Street Fighter 6 (PC)

Rs 3,999
8.2

GAMEPLAY

8.5/10

VISUALS

8.0/10

PERFORMANCE

8.0/10

GAME MODES

8.5/10

ADDITIONS

8.5/10

Combat

9.0/10

VALUE FOR MONEY

7.0/10

What Is Good?

  • Excellent and fun combat
  • Drive Gauge system is quite rewarding
  • Modern controls are brilliant
  • Beautiful, colourful graphics
  • World Tour is a silly and interesting touch
  • A creative approach to online lobbies
  • Cross-platform enabled
  • Newcomer and old-timer friendly

What Is Bad?

  • Getting online matches can be tiresome
  • Annoying ''Mad Gear Gang'' in World Tour

Publisher and developer Capcom, keeps the fire burning by introducing new game modes with a fascinating online Battle Hub, the usual and casual single-player modes we have all fallen in love with — and an interesting open-world story mode with freeze frames to live for. Furthermore, the 18-character roster — both old and new makes the package a whole. We’ve been playing the game for a couple of weeks now and here’s what we thought of it.

Old-Timers and Newcomers Rejoice

The game lands you on the loading screen with three options to choose from: World Tour, Battle Hub, and Fighting Ground. Games of this genre are single-player heaven. The versus mode is to live for if you have friends over, we spent half of an outstation trip playing Street Fighter with friends taking chances one by one. It’s quite addictive and with such a huge roster of characters, time just happens to fly by.


Besides that, it also offers a bunch of other options that can let you indulge in online ranked battles, casual matches, or custom room games. Along with single-player versus mode, team battle is also something that caught my attention. It’s a squad match with three characters on each side. Fun if you’re playing with friends.

There’s also a mini-story mode which lets you play a small portion of every character’s life. It’s buffed up by including freeze-frame graphics, that are quite vibrant and eye-candy. Kudos to the team for stitching between the old and the new with the help of visuals, while not losing a single bit of essence.

The Battle Hub online mode is something I haven’t tried before. It’s basically an online lobby wherein you can interact with live players. The lobby is usually filled with players wandering around. Interestingly, there are a bunch of arcade machines installed in this lobby, which acts as an invitation for other players to enter into a battle with you.

This is a very creative style of getting players into online lobbies. Additionally, you get to chat with people by interacting with them. You can also request a fight with them, though, I would suggest practising beforehand.

Since the possibility of getting thrashed by a level 73 player is high. With that being said, battle hub can get boring, really quick when you don’t get matches, and this happens often. With the implementation of Battle Hub, Capcom does not want to market the Street Fighter franchise as single-player heaven, but instead seems to be focussing on online more.

World Tour

While you can get pretty busy in the above-mentioned modes, Street Fighter 6 also brings along World Tour, which is basically an open-world mode wherein you have to create a player from scratch. The player is then entered into a training facility where Luke turns out to be the fun-loving coach. It’s true what they say, never judge a book by its cover. The cutscenes are absolutely beautiful, and the short tutorial run gives you a hang of almost everything, the rest you can learn on the fly.

Now, I would suggest going into the World Tour without any prejudice and with an open mind. Because, in the scheme of all things, most of the gameplay in the story does not make much sense — But, it is absolutely fun. Initially, you are paired off with Bosch, who appears to be a show-off student from Luke’s training facility. While you can learn everything in the facility, the real world functions differently.

Hence, you and Bosch are thrown off into the Metro City to interact with people and pick fights. Probably the most hilarious thing about the city is, somehow, someone or the other is always up for a fight, which makes absolutely no sense.

All you have to do is go up to an NPC (non-playable character) and either talk to them or just pick an out-of-context fight. The open-world third-person camera immediately switches to the 2D arcade mode as soon as a fight starts. Passers-by gather around the arena, and once a winner is declared, things go back to normal as if nothing happened. No-holds barred, no grudges carried, just a normal day at the office. Metro City has to be a step up from Gotham — Batman might be turning around in his bat cave right about now.

This is quite hysterical, but it made me curious as to where the story would go. Interactions with other characters are also twisted and give off a Yakuza-like vibe, with no voice dialogues, just subtitles. The story basically wants you to learn different things, but more importantly, build up your strength.

Along the way, you’ll meet with legends of the game — coined as masters — like Chun-Li who’s teaching martial arts classes in a temple nearby, Marisa who’s residing in Italy, Blanka, and more. You get to spend transient moments with these masters, who can give you lessons you can impart and use against enemies. These lessons and gears can be tweaked around using a phone that your character uses.

Speaking of enemies, the Metro City is filled with gangs — gangs wearing cardboard boxes on their faces — Capcom’s hysterical take on things like this is quite fun.

What’s not fun is how annoying they can be when you are just trying to go by your business. If you just happen to go past a gang on the streets, one or the other member just sucker punches you out of nowhere. These gang wars, across the board, are quite arduous, and to an extent unnecessary. It adds no real value to the ongoing story but helps you increase your level at the cost of vitality — an energy bar that can be filled by eating pepperoni pizza at a stall nearby.

Friendly and Eye Candy

The Street Fighter franchise, for the most part, catered to the audience it had already built in the past few decades or so. However, at the outset of Street Fighter 6, Capcom wants to have its cake and eat it too. It has introduced a total of three control settings: Classic, Modern, and Dynamic. Pretty self-explanatory, but this is a great way to ease newcomers into the game. Older players are used to the classic controls, it uses a bunch of combinations which can be tough to understand, let alone compete.

Modern controls, on the other hand, are simpler to dissect. This option lets you perform complex tasks without much thought process, even an absolute newbie to games can instantly pick up notes by smashing buttons. While Classic players might give you a side-eye for this, the simpler approach can help you win battles in online lobbies.

Messing up the combat in a game that is entirely dependent on it, would’ve been a disappointment. But, with Street Fighter’s legacy and years of experience, there was never a doubt. Combat, across the board, is satisfactory and rewarding, especially in versus mode. Street Fighter 6 introduces a new Drive system, which can be the turning point in a battle. It’s quite easy to grasp, especially in the Modern control scheme. After entering a match, the top portion showcases a Drive gauge (basically an energy bar), which is a lifeline for both players.

Credits: Sony Playstation/Capcom

With the use of this, you can perform five crucial techniques: Drive Impact, Drive Parry, Drive Reversal, Drive Rush, and Overdrive. The names can be quite intimidating, but it’s quite easy to grasp. In most cases, I catered to Drive Impact for an impactful (sorry, not sorry) attack on my foe. It has the ability to absorb an oncoming attack, but use it wisely because if your opponent is using Drive Parry, this will have gone to waste. It costs you a single gauge.

Drive Parry, let’s call it Sergio Ramos (for no reason at all) — this is your last line of defence for anything that is thrown at you. It can help you regain bars if executed in a timely manner. Remember, defence is the best offence, use it smartly and it’ll yield good results as this allows you for a quick reversal. It will cost you about half a gauge.

It’s all in the name — Drive Reversal allows you to counterattack and gain some cookie points for dusting your opponent. It’s not very rewarding but should help you get out of a tricky position. It comes at a cost of two gauge bars.

Drive Rush is quite simple, I found E. Honda doing it the best, we’ll get into the characters shortly. It’s basically a rushed dash towards your opponent for a good amount of damage. This costs three gauge bars, use it wisely.

Overdrive is a special move which causes a great deal of damage at the cost of two gauge bars. You also have the option to pair it with the Super meter. This combo is quite brutal if done perfectly.

Credits: Sony Playstation/Capcom

The Super Meter gets filled every round and can be used by a button combo, this unlocks a series of eye-candy graphics that just flows well. Use all the gauge bars efficiently, or else you’ll be left in a state of burnout. This means you cannot use any powers except for normal punches and attacks. If your opponent still has some bars left, you might be in trouble.

Speaking of eye-candy graphics, Capcom made sure this iteration is an upgrade over the predecessor. The approach here is more colourful than I had expected, but it looks quite amazing, especially when landing a Drive Impact. The entire cavalry of characters — both old and new look great and I’m sure this was tough to achieve. The World Tour graphics aren’t as overwhelming but serve the purpose.

I played the game on three different devices, and it worked without a single hint of lag on High presets. The official Steam listing has a minimum requirement of an Intel Core i5-7500 / AMD Ryzen 3 1200 paired with either GTX1060 (VRAM 6GB) / Radeon RX 580 (VRAM 4GB) graphic cards. It should run decently well on budget laptops too at lower graphics.

The Gang

Street Fighter balances the weights by introducing a handful of new characters while also serving the old-timers with legends such as Ryu, Dhalsim, and more. The game has a total of 18 characters in this iteration and each character has something different to offer — which is what makes the game even better. Among the new characters, Jamie and Luke were the two with whom I managed to win a bunch of battles. The former is quite quick on his feet, while the latter has some interesting moves up his sleeve — and is also coined the new Ryu of the next-gen.

JP, another addition to the roster is quite an interesting character who uses a stick and magic to calmly walk through the battle. Classics like Ryu are still a legend, and it’s always fun to play with him. I found playing against Dhalsim quite irritating, because of the long-range shenanigans he pulls. You have to be very patient around him, in order to strike.

Overall, it’s quite a balanced set of characters. Players don’t need to worry about new characters as the developers have worked on them equally. You can use different sets of combos and moves using every character and be assured there will be something new on your screen.

Verdict

As mentioned multiple times throughout the review, Street Fighter 6 is a balanced game which is not only focused on purists but new-age gamers as well. It’s one of the most interesting fighting games I have played in recent times. And, thankfully, the game is not only locked to single-player mode but instead gives you a glimpse at how a storyline would look in the arcade world. With meaningful features, new mechanics, beautiful graphics and the never-failing combat, Street Fighter 6 continues the legacy of the franchise.