Street Fighter 6 Review
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Street Fighter 6 Review

There’s no denying that Street Fighter 5 wasn’t released in the best shape. The half-assed character roster, missing features and lack of content felt underwhelming for the series and if anything, damaged the brand’s name. Capcom knew it had to fix all this with Street Fighter 6 and it has done just that and more. Street Fighter 6 is an incredible fighting game that feels like a robust package of content. It is oozing with style and every frame on screen looks fantastic. But it is also remarkably accessible making it the best game to play in the series.

The nice thing about Street Fighter 6 is that it can be whatever you want it to be. If you just want to pummel your friends on the couch you can. If you want to jump into the hardcore world of online fighting you can. If you want to play through some short bursts of the Campaign Mode and get some backstory to the fighters you can. You can even play a fully-fledged story mode with a custom fighter you build from scratch.

Street Fighter 6 Cammy Zangief Lily Gameplay Capcom

Honestly, this story mode took me by surprise. I didn’t expect Capcom to pack in such detail in this mode and it is something most fighting games are sorely missing. Sometimes you just want to mess around in a narrative-driven world and move up the ranks from a rookie to a hardcore fighter. The World Tour is this place.

Sure, from the surface the World Tour mode is basically a glorified tutorial with some story to it. However, the real fun here is how the mode manages to deliver some sort of RPG-esque flavour to the game without even knowing. I started out as a new fighter on the streets and as progressed, I explored an open world, met new characters, bought new clothes to stylize my fighter and could battle virtually anyone I wanted to.

Street Fighter 6 Open Beta Weekend Capcom Playable Characters

People around the world take on the fighting styles of the main characters in the game. So it didn’t take long before I started mastering how to dodge, parry and deflect specific fighting styles. The comical aspect of the World Tour mode is how crazy these fights can get. I could literally walk up to an old lady and challenge her to a hoe-down which would then result in a fight between her. It was hilarious to see this lady suddenly adopt a Chun-Li stance and start kicking my ass.

World Tour is also teeming with fun fights and mini-games which again, are glorified tutorials but I couldn’t care less. As these fights and games progressed, I slowly mastered the game’s most intricate details such as motion inputs, frame timing, multi-combos and more. I didn’t even know what I was doing until I felt like a true professional days later. I use the word “professional” lightly here.

Sure, the Street Fighter 6 World Tour starts to blend into itself after a while. The cinematics get a bit tedious to watch, the character animations are horribly robotic and cheap and the overall environments do get tired. However, I can’t say this takes away from the real meat of the game here because the fights still look excellent.

Considering Street Fighter 5 had no campaign, I was surprised to see how far Capcom went here with this World Tour. It is exactly the mode I would jump into in every fighting game before I even attempted anything else.

Fighting Games Tekken 8 Street Fighter 6 Next-Gen Leaps

Outside of the World Tour, Street Fighter 6 is also packed with other modes to enjoy. Training is a highly-detailed mode where you can spend hours upon hours testing your fighting moves. Trials are character-based tutorial-like sequences that basically took me through a fighter’s entire move library and forced me to master each and every possible combo they had before moving on.

There’s a Campaign Mode which lives outside of the World Tour. Here, I could select a fighter and watch some short art cutscenes. There was some voice acting added in. I won’t say this mode helped me get to know the fighters any more than I did before but I did manage to unlock some content from completing all the fights with each of them.

Then there’s the Battle Hub which is a social area in the game where I could meet other players, and socialise in a digital area. It is pretty cool and I am looking forward to jumping back into this mode when the servers go live for the game this week. There’s a lot of potential to grow the Battle Hub with events, themed content and much more. It is kind of like the Tower in Destiny but without the micro-managing of items.

Street Fighter 6 Gameplay Breakdown Capcom

Now for the real meat. Online matches in Street Fighter 6 feel incredibly smooth. I didn’t get much time to play multiplayer in the review game but I did play around in the previous beta too. In both instances, fighting felt very much the same and that’s a good thing. I especially enjoyed how quickly fights ended and started so there wasn’t this “waiting in limbo” for the next round to begin. I didn’t experience much lag either. I am no pro at the netcode situation in Street Fighter 6 but from what I gather, Capcom has done the community well here.

Then there’s the control system. In Street Fighter 6, there are two control modes – Classic and Modern. Classic is the old-school fighting mode where players have to string together perfectly-timed button mashes to perform hard-hitting combos. Modern is an easier button mode where basically all the hard combos are mapped to simple movements.

Street Fighter 6 Character Creation Closed Beta Capcom Tokyo Game Show

There are some advantages and disadvantages to both. Classic is well, tougher and definitely for veterans of the series. Modern, while being easy, deals less damage and also locks you out of using certain moves. An example – you can’t string together certain long air combos with Modern due to how the buttons are mapped. The different control modes are also less forgiving on the frame timing and you have to master how the game reads your inputs to truly achieve victory.

The records and inputs are registered differently in Street Fighter 6. The game relies on its neutral stance in order to pull off certain moves. Some moves rely heavily on this neutral feature because some combos can’t be pulled off unless the game registers the player hitting this neutral spot. Often, I would be pulling off a move and attempt a certain combo but I didn’t give the game enough time to register the neutral position so the combo didn’t kick in. Not registering neutral would perform a completely different move. 

Street Fighter 6 Review

On Modern controls, neutral is also registered much faster so in a way, you don’t have to worry so much about the key amount of frames it takes for a fighter to register neutral. All you need to do is stop pressing a direction.

I don’t know if the 20% reduction is enough to warrant this Modern control scheme. Is it tournament ready? I don’t know either. I kinda think Capcom will increase the damage reduction here to further balance stuff out but we’ll have to see how the professional tournaments approach this. The nice thing – this Modern control mode is legal in tournaments now so it will be interesting to see how the landscape changes to adopt it.

There’s also the new Stamina Gauge and Drive Gauge which will drastically change how you play. Attacking and taking damage refills the Drive Gauge. Spamming attacks or cashing out the gauge gives you an advantage. But you have to balance the use and refill of the gauge. 

The Stamina Gauge prevents spamming certain attacks. Opponents can also parry these attacks at the cost of their gauge.  I think the gauge is balanced enough. You can completely ignore it and stick to pulling off combos without worrying about being fatigued but if you rely on the gauge you’ll need to be mindful of its use.

Street Fighter 6 Review

The gauge also comes in handy when performing combos. You can extend certain moves by consuming the gauge which really lets you pull off some insane moves. So players who rely on the gauge have a definite benefit and you can consume the majority of the gauge for some crazy moves but again, this can be blocked, parried and countered so there’s a risk and reward factor. 

As for the fighters, the returning ones are just as great to play as before. Zangief is very slow and hard to get in. Drive Rush helps close the gap by increasing his movement when sprinting forward. Jamie is a new character inspired by Yun and Yang and he is a little overpowered at the moment. Everyone will find the fighter they enjoy playing and there’s enough at launch to keep you busy.

Street Fighter 6 Review

In the end, Street Fighter 6 definitely feels like it has gone back to its roots. At the same time, it feels like a true next-gen fighting game thanks to its fuller, beefier experience. The hip-hop style is definitely a throwback to the older games and there’s definitely no personality lacking here. Compared to Street Fighter 5’s over-professional and dull styling, this is a day-and-night difference.

Street Fighter 6 could be the best fighting game I have played in a very long time. I am no master at these games and I don’t run out to buy them at launch. However, the game is very fun to play and its real draw for me was its accessibility. I felt good at it even though I really wasn’t. Of course, this is also completely optional too so if you’re a veteran, you’ll enjoy this just as much as noob.

This Street Fighter 6 review is based on a code sent to us by Capcom. The game releases on 2 June and starts at R1419. Check out our full pre-order guide here.

Street Fighter 6


Street Fighter 6 is without a doubt the best game in the series and is a day-and-night difference compared to SF5. The sheer amount of content will keep you busy for months. The game’s personality is addictive and the accessibility has added a new layer to what was once an exclusive club for hardcore fighter fans.

Marco is the owner and founder of GLITCHED. South Africa’s largest gaming and pop culture website. GLITCHED quickly established itself with tech and gaming enthusiasts with on-point opinions, quick coverage of breaking events and unbiased reviews across its website, social platforms, and YouTube channel.

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