Street Fighter 6, the latest title in the hugely influential videogame franchise that has spanned over three decades, is just around the bend, and with a rich roster of characters both old and new, is set to dominate the fighting genre once again. With fans eagerly anticipating the new release thanks to the wealth of fresh features like the resource-managing Drive Gauge system, the multiple control options, or the Real Time Commentary feature, many count down the remaining days until they can get their hands on the sixth mainline entry of the Street Fighter series.
Before we get to Street Fighter 6, however, you’re going to want to limber up, learn the fighters better, and make sure you’ve got your combos down pat. What better way to do that than by exploring the trove of treasured titles in the series’ backlog? Luckily for you, we’ve got a solid selection ready for you to get your teeth (and fists) stuck into:
Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike
Originally released in 1999, Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike is often regarded as the best title in the series, and considered one of the best fighting games of all time. The third and final iteration of Street Fighter III releases boasted refined gameplay mechanics, including an adjustment to the parry system, and a diverse cast of characters, especially with the return of the now iconic Street Fighter character, Chun-Li. As the final release of the “classic” era of the series, 3rd Strike is an important bit of Street Fighter history and an entry in the franchise that shouldn’t be missed.
Street Fighter Alpha 3
The 1998 entry, Street Fighter Alpha 3, is considered one of the most popular games in the series. Featuring a whopping roster of 28 characters from throughout the Street Fighter franchise, the title also expanded the control options from the previous Alpha titles with the new Isms playing styles. These Isms helped deepen the gameplay thoroughly, with different styles to emulate combat abilities from both previous Alpha games and Super Street Fighter II Turbo, as well as a new style that gave players the ability to devise custom combinations. The wide variety of movesets makes this title a crucial one for Street Fighter fans.
Super Street Fighter II Turbo
Although first released in 1994, Super Street Fighter II Turbo is still massively popular and played competitively throughout the esports scene. The fifth version of Street Fighter II refined the combat almost perfectly, with the introduction of both air combos and super combos, two mechanics which have now become a crucial part of the Street Fighter formula, as well as bringing back the high adrenaline speed from Street Fighter II Turbo. The combination of fast-paced action and a solid roster of iconic fighters makes it no mystery why Super Street Fighter II Turbo is the oldest active competitive fighting game in the world today.
Ultra Street Fighter IV
Street Fighter IV was the first Street Fighter title released after a hiatus of 11 years, but as is tradition with the series, was revamped a couple of times during its lifetime. 2014 saw the release of Ultra Street Fighter IV, the complete version of the title, which included all previous DLC characters and stages. The release also saw the inclusion of several new fighters too, with the Final Fight favorite Poison making her debut in a mainline Street Fighter title after her initial inclusion in Street Fighter x Tekken, increasing the final roster to a huge 44. With the option to select the various “Edition” of each character, as well as the new Omega variation, the sheer depth of roster mechanics means Ultra Street Fighter IV is a must for fans of the fighting game
Street Fighter V: Champion Edition
Street Fighter V: Champion Edition is the final iteration of the Street Fighter V entry into the series, and the most recent before the upcoming Street Fighter 6. Including the original content of the game, Champion Edition also provides all the content released up to and including Season 4, expanding the original roster heavily, as well as many new stages and costumes. Also including the traditional Arcade mode from the Arcade Edition release, this version saw an expansion on the V-Gauge system with the arrival of a second V-Skill for each character.
That’s our selection of Street Fighter games, and there are plenty of titles for you to get some solid practice bouts in before the new challenger arrives. Have you played any of them before? Which entry in the series is your personal favorite? Either way, tape up your fists, practice your win poses, and start charging up your Drive Gauge because Street Fighter 6 smashes its way to you on the 2nd of June 2023!
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