Street Fighter Week | My Story as a Competitive Street Fighter Player

Street Fighter Week continues! Though this story was sort of told in real time over the years, here’s a consolidated story of my rise (and fall) in the world of competitive Street Fighter!

There was a time when I thought the world of competitive Street Fighter didn’t extend beyond the bounds of local arcades. For a long time, I fancied myself as being savvy in Street Fighter II, as I could perform any of the game’s special moves on command and I could beat my friends. I didn’t think there was anything more to learn.

Boy, was I wrong.

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It’s Street Fighter Week on In Third Person!

Round 1, fight!

Throughout this week, we’re going to be celebrating the true king of fighters: Street Fighter! It’s is one of my all-time favourite gaming franchises and I’ll never get tired talking about it. You’ll see posts relating to multiple facets of the Street Fighter experience, from the games themselves, to its colourful cast of characters, to personal stories, its eSports side, and more!

Hope you’ll join me in this ongoing discussion about Capcom’s fighting juggernaut. The party starts tomorrow, so get your controller of choice ready and let’s throw down!

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The Parallels Between Overwatch and Street Fighter

Up until my time with Overwatch, shooters for me have been primarily an exercise of precision shooting. In games where each character is only really defined by the gun they wield, differences in weapon and equipment don’t really do much to separate one player from another. Especially in games where players can hold multiple guns and carry different equipment, the only real differences are the players themselves. I know there will be hardcore shooter players that will call shenanigans on that statement, but let me continue. Even in a game like Splatoon, where shooting isn’t necessarily the goal of the game, you still all play as the same default characters with adjustments to equipment. I have enjoyed a number of shooters in my day, but most of them haven’t really sunk their teeth into me.

Until Overwatch. Granted, Team Fortress 2 did it first, but Overwatch stands out from the pack for straying beyond the default soldier with different weapons approach. The term “hero shooter” exists thanks to games like Team Fortress 2, Overwatch, and Paladins. In a lot of ways, my reasons for loving Overwatch are similar to why I love Street Fighter and other types of fighting games.

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Falling Behind in Street Fighter V

For almost a decade, my prowess in Street Fighter has been an integral part of my gaming identity. Making the climb from scrub to 17th at the WorldGaming national championships many years later, I put everything I had into being the best I could be and it paid off. It proved to me that my knowledge and talents in games can go incredibly far if I really put my mind to it. Not only did all of that effort pay off for Street Fighter, but it increased my overall fighting game chops considerably to the point where I was a worthy adversary in almost every other fighting game I touched.

Flash forward to the present. Due to my personal grievances with the way the game was designed and the meta that built around it, I left Street Fighter V behind. I’d poke in here and there to check out new characters or major additions, but my time trying to be the best was behind me. Coming back to the game now in light of the update that reduces input lag only amplifies how far we’ve drifted apart.

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Sagat and G Make Their Street Fighter V Debut in This Set of Videos!

Revealed at EVO 2018 and released the next day, fan favourite Sagat and mysterious newcomer G enter the fray in Street Fighter V! Get your first glimpse of these fighters here!

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Falke Gameplay Reveal in Street Fighter V

After a series of returning favourites, Capcom introduces a brand new character to the Street Fighter universe. Falke was originally designed to be an M. Bison clone, but she has broken free of his grasp and now fights alongside of Ed as a member of his Neo Shadaloo faction. She has the ability to imbue Psycho Power into physical objects, which allows her staff to do more than just conk people on the head.

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First Gameplay Glimpse of Blanka in Street Fighter V

Capcom finally unleashes the green beast as Blanka appears in this debut gameplay trailer. Will be the first to admit that I wish he and his troll play style was left in the past, he doesn’t look like he’s as much of a nuisance this time around. He now gets a command grab, as well as a number of tweaks to give him more combo opportunities, but he doesn’t appear to be as obnoxious in this form. That said, his V-Trigger 2 looks particularly dumb, as he sails around the full screen in ball form.

Blanka will be available as part of the Season 3 DLC offerings on February 20th. I won’t be buying, but I hope Blanka fans rejoice at the better-late-than-never inclusion of this fighter!

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Street Fighter V and My Urien Problem

My interest in Street Fighter V cooled off for a number of reasons. One, certain aspects of the way the game was designed mechanically didn’t jive with the way I like to play fighting games. Two, I had a very difficult time coming to grips with my first 0-2 defeat at Red Bull Proving Grounds. Finally, I was getting destroyed by every Urien player in sight.

Introduced near the middle of season 1, Urien is a force to be reckoned with. He has a killer tool-set that allows him to dominate in many ranges while being able to string together lengthy combos for massive damage. Best/worst of all is his Aegis Reflector V-Trigger, that is unparalleled as a tool for starting combos, extending combos, and creating reset opportunities.

Each time I matched up against a Urien player, it was like watching the same movie over-and-over. I would either get beaten to a pulp, or strike Urien enough to allow him to activate his V-Trigger and turn the tables on me. After piling up loss-after-loss, my motivation to play the game fell through the floor.

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Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition Review

Rushed out the door in 2016 to coincide with Capcom Cup, Street Fighter V was released in an embarrassingly bare-bones state. While I initially praised the game for its great gameplay and detailed graphics, the launch product was woefully lacking in many ways. From a single-player suite that didn’t include a traditional arcade mode, to unstable netcode, to menu items that had “coming soon” messaging as placeholders, the sorry state that the game debuted in negatively impacted sales and public perception in a big way. Had it not gained a foothold as the premier fighting game esport, this game would have fallen off a cliff into obscurity.

Despite the bungled launch, Capcom has continually put in the effort to improve the product. In the summer of 2016, they added a story mode as a free update. The netcode has been stabilized for the most part. They’ve even added 12 more characters as paid DLC to boost the current roster size to 28, with another six on the way. Unlike those incremental fixes and updates, Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition is a sizable step towards the game that this should have been all along.

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Out Now – Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition

Today’s the day!

To Capcom’s credit, they’ve made many updates prior to this in order to improve the half-baked version of Street Fighter V they put out in 2016. But the Arcade Edition update is the first truly major shake-up to the game. Now including a long-awaited arcade mode, multiple V-Triggers for each character, new modes and more, the package here is probably what should have come out in the first place.

If you don’t have Street Fighter V yet, now’s a good time to jump in. At a discounted price, you’ll get the disc plus the first two seasons of DLC characters, raising your base roster up to 28. If you already own Street Fighter V, you’ll get the update for free, albeit without the extra characters.

Admittedly, my interest for the game has fallen off quite a bit. However, I will give this a go and maybe there’s enough improvements here to keep me around!

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