Street Fighter 6 Review: Simply Fun


Street Fighter 6

By: Jason Siu


9 min read

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Street Fighter 6 Review

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Quick Verdict

Street Fighter 6 is to the Street Fighter series as Monster Hunter World was to the Monster Hunter series, in that it has significantly lowered the barrier to entry without ruining the core gameplay experience. I believe Street Fighter 6 is poised to be a turning point for the fighting game genre, serving as a model of approachability for many future games. From the addition of the Modern control scheme to the robust World Tour mode, Street Fighter 6 appeals to casual players, returning fighters, seasoned veterans, and even professional players. I would be surprised if Street Fighter 7 arrives anytime soon; this game is something Capcom can build on until next-gen consoles arrive.

I still remember the very first time I ever played Street Fighter II. I was barely eight years old, playing at an arcade in Hong Kong while on vacation. I remember being amazed at Guile and his Sonic Boom move, and it was the one game I couldn’t stop thinking about once I got back home in the U.S. Needless to say, when Street Fighter II released on SNES, I proceeded to spend hundreds of hours playing it. And then there was Street Fighter II Turbo, before Super Street Fighter II was released. Across those games on SNES and at the arcade, I probably spent thousands of hours in my younger years mastering Ken, Ryu, Chun-Li, Vega, and Cammy.

I skipped many of the next few Street Fighter games and it wasn’t until Street Fighter IV on the Xbox 360 that I rekindled my love for the series. In fact, the fight stick I’m currently using for Street Fighter 6 is my Street Fighter IV Tournament Edition fight stick from the Xbox 360. I spent hundreds of hours competitively playing the ranked mode online in Street Fighter IV. But after that, I got a little burnt out on the fighting genre and decided to skip Street Fighter V. Clearly, I have a thing for the even-numbered entries in the franchise, because Street Fighter 6 is a game I’ve had an eye on since it was first unveiled.

I consider myself a casual fighting game fan, which is why I enlisted the help of our seasoned veteran, Chad Custodio for this review. Collectively, he’s spent thousands of hours on every fighting game imaginable, from Granblue Fantasy: Versus to Guilty Gear -Strive- to DNF Duel. His feedback allows us to look at Street Fighter 6 from two different perspectives: casual and experienced.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

The Good

Capcom’s RE Engine might go down as the most important piece of the company’s history. It has been used for Resident Evil games, Monster Hunter Rise, Street Fighter 6, and will underpin upcoming games such as Exoprimal and Dragon’s Dogma 2. With RE Engine, Capcom is able to craft a very special gaming experience with Street Fighter 6, starting with its avatar creator. Arguably the best character creation found in all fighting games, Street Fighter 6 allows players to create an avatar where its body shape and height actually impact gameplay. That avatar is what players use in the World Tour mode, which is a similar RPG mode found in Granblue Fantasy: Versus, but its progression feels more natural since players earn their kit over time.

In World Tour, players “train” under iconic fighters from the Street Fighter Series, learning their moves as they do battle using that fighter’s style. Over time, players are able to select from a very wide variety of moves to customize their avatar. Yes, you are able to bring a fighter to online avatar battles who have a combination of special moves from Ken, Chun-Li, Blanka, Dee Jay, Juri, and more. Mix and match, so long as you have the available move slots. It’s a system that is brilliantly designed and swapping move sets is surprisingly simple and intuitive. There is also a skill tree system and items you can use in battle, lending more to the RPG experience.

The World Tour mode is very charming in a Yakuza/Like a Dragon sort of way, with very zany and ridiculous scenarios. It doesn’t take itself seriously at all, which leans into how approachable the game is. Players don’t need to know any of Street Fighter’s history to enjoy World Tour. You’ll see in my screenshots that I gave my avatar the Blanka-chan outfit and wore it pretty much throughout my experience. It’s silly and added humor to every single cutscene throughout the game, especially ones that were meant to be serious. While we believe Mortal Kombat has the better overall story, Street Fighter 6 does bring more character development compared to previous entries in the series. You won’t get the cinematic experience Mortal Kombat games have to offer with an overarching story line, but Street Fighter 6’s World Tour story will successfully introduce new players to the franchise and fighting games in general.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

World Tour consists of a main quest line and dozens of side quests. Many of the side quests serve as tutorials of sorts, where players will learn about the mechanics of Street Fighter 6. The mode is really an extensive and interactive tutorial that serves a greater purpose than just entertainment. Once a player completes the World Tour, they should feel comfortable to compete online, because they’ll have a very good understanding of the game’s overall mechanics, even if they stepped into the World Tour with little to no fighting game experience.

The other two modes in Street Fighter 6 are Battle Hub and Fighting Ground. Battle Hub is designed to bring a virtual arcade experience to the game and is similar to the avatar-based lobbies in ArcSys games. You can queue up at arcade machines, spectate battles, and more. There is even a collection of classic Capcom games, including the original Street Fighter II, you can play inside the Battle Hub. The center area is also where players can do battle using their customized avatars. It’s a surprisingly social environment and those who grew up hanging out at arcades will enjoy being in the Battle Hub.

The Fighting Ground is the traditional Street Fighter experience, where players can enter Arcade mode and enjoy a short story with a selected fighter going through a single-player campaign. This is very similar to the single-player mode from classic Street Fighter games, and it lives on to this day. The Practice menu is home to training mode, which is a huge step up from Street Fighter V, which already had a great training mode. Here, players can also see tutorials, character guides, and combo trials. This is where you’ll want to spend a few hours to learn more advanced fighting strategies. The Fighting Ground is also where you’ll find the traditional versus mode (one on one and team battle), special match (extreme battle with crazy events) and online battles (ranked match, casual match, and custom room).

If you’re interested in competing online, Street Fighter 6 assigns separate ranks per character. This way, you don’t end up risking your ranking if you decide you want to learn another character. For those who spent time playing Street Fighter V, you will be happy to hear that in Street Fighter 6, the characters now feel like full versions of themselves during the entire match, as opposed to Street Fighter V, where characters didn’t feel complete until the V-trigger was activated.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

The Bad

As great as World Tour is, it’s not very deep. You’ll spend a lot of time running around from location A to location B and it will get annoying the number of random battles you’ll encounter. One of my biggest annoyances, even though it’s really a minor one, is having to run back to a hideout to change from day to night or vice-versa. Many of the missions can only be completed during daytime or nighttime, so you’re going back to the hideout often to select day or night. The thing is, the hideout doesn’t serve any other function other than displaying a background image with your two options of day and night. This could have simply have been an option in the menu.

Speaking of menus, they’re a wild mess. During World Tour mode, you have two menus, one specifically for World Tour mode (your smartphone) and the game’s main menu. I don’t know how many times I accidentally went to the wrong menu, and trying to find exactly what you need can be tedious. For example, you have to change your controls for each fighter individually in Battle Hub, while there’s a universal selector based on P1 or P2 side. It’s all unnecessarily convoluted and Street Fighter 6 would have largely benefited from a good UI/UX overhaul. Overall, these are minor annoyances, but if you’re using a fight stick, the experience will be more frustrating.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

The Ugly

The overall art style of Street Fighter 6 may not appeal to everyone. While I find it particularly stylish, I can also understand how some players can find it, well, ugly. But this is pretty subjective and you’ll have to form your own opinion on whether it’s enough to distract you from enjoying the game. Personally, I love the fact that my avatar can wear a silly Blanka-chan outfit in online battles.

There’s also the discussion about paid DLC. Street Fighter 6 already has a Year 1 Character Pass ($29.99) and a Year 1 Ultimate Pass ($49.99) — both of which are in addition to the game’s $59.99 price tag. The Year 1 Character Pass adds four additional characters: Rashid, A.K.I., Ed, and Akuma, along with additional characters’ colors, and 4,200 Drive Tickets (an in-game currency). The Ultimate Pass includes everything from the Character Pass and adds more costumes, two additional stages, and a total of 7,700 Drive Tickets. Not surprisingly, these packages aren’t sitting well with the community especially since they were announced before the game’s launch. It is frustrating that a fan favorite character like Akuma is locked behind another paywall, and based on some iconic characters missing from the roster, players can probably guess what fighters will be part of future Character Passes.

Considering this, I believe Capcom has little reason to even contemplate Street Fighter 7 until the next generation of consoles arrives, or the RE Engine receives a significant upgrade. Street Fighter 6 is a fantastic foundation that can be improved, so I do expect a lot of Character Passes in the coming years as Capcom continues to support Street Fighter 6.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

The Game Changer

As great as World Tour is and the new Drive Impact, Drive Parry, and Drive Rush mechanics are to evolve the Street Fighter series, the biggest game changer and the one feature that I believe pushes Street Fighter 6 to an entirely new group of players is the Modern control scheme. While I don’t prefer it because of my thousand of hours of muscle memory using Classic controls, the introduction of Modern controls allows anyone to pick up a controller and learn how to play Street Fighter 6.

When using the Modern controls, here’s how the main buttons are mapped:

  • Square or X: Light Attack
  • Cross or A: Medium Attack
  • Circle or B: Heavy Attack
  • Triangle or Y: Special Attack
  • R1 or RB: Drive Parry
  • L1 or LB: Drive Impact
  • R2 or RT: Auto Combo
  • L2 or LT: Grab/Throw

Even though Modern controls are designed for newcomers, veterans are also finding them an attractive way to play. The verdict is still out on which one has a higher ceiling, but the point is, Modern controls makes the game significantly more approachable. That said, it’s not necessarily easier because to be competitive, you’ll still need a strong understanding of the mechanics of Street Fighter 6. Button mashers, just like in the 1990s, will still have little success against seasoned veterans.

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery


Whether you’re a newcomer to fighting games or a seasoned player, Street Fighter 6 has something for everyone. Of course, this assumes you enjoy Street Fighter’s gameplay. The new Drive mechanics do not significantly change Street Fighter’s style, so if you don’t enjoy previous entries in the series, nothing here will likely change your mind. But if your frustrations were more related to controls and general complexity of fighting games, the combination of World Tour and Modern controls is likely enough to change your mind.

Street Fighter 6 is a great introduction to fighting games and the World Tour mode is worth it for the price of admission alone. It’s an imaginative and creative single-player experience, and while it lacks depth, it makes up with entertainment.

Street Fighter 6 was released on June 2, 2023. This review is based on a purchased retail copy of the game on PC. While FullCleared does have affiliate partnerships, they do not influence our editorial content. We may, however, earn commissions for products purchased via affiliate links.

Street Fighter 6 box art

Buy Street Fighter 6

Platform: PlayStation 4, PlayStation 5, Xbox Series X|S, PC

Release date: June 2, 2023

Street Fighter 6 Ranked Mode Video from Chad Custodio

Street Fighter 6 Review Gallery

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With over 20 years of online publishing experience, Jason Siu is currently the Content Director at VerticalScope and used to spend most of his time writing about cars. His work can be seen on websites such as AutoGuide, EV Pulse, FlatSixes, Tire Authority, and more. As the former co-founder of and West Coast Editor of Modified Magazine, he has also authored two books for CarTech Books. In his spare time, he founded FullCleared to indulge in his passion for writing about games. Although Jason is a variety gamer, he generally prefers RPGs.

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