Street Fighter’s story has always been all over the place, with the series’ games leaping to and fro around the timeline so much that it’s hard to pin down exactly when an event happens. Luckily, Street Fighter 6 director Takayuki Nakayama and producer Shuhei Matsumoto know this and are looking to rectify that with their latest beat ’em up.
We now know that Street Fighter 6’s story will take place after the events of Street Fighter III. “We felt that having the story in order of Street Fighter IV, V, and then III, we were cutting the timeline up into pieces too much,” says Nakayama, speaking to Play magazine in its September 2022 issue. “This setting allows us to see a more mature version of characters such as Ryu and Chun-Li, and lets us bridge the introduction of Luke.”
The game’s producer thinks this is going to be a big draw for the player base, especially since they’re now in a more mature form. “The returnees have grown since you last saw them,” Matsumoto says. “So discovering their development is going to be one of the fun parts of the game!”
The roster of bruisers’ new look is going to be accentuated by the fact that the series is changing from the Unreal Engine used in SFV to the RE Engine. Nakayama says that there was a lot of internal conversation about taking the fighting game into a new era of realistic graphics when it’s been known for its hand-drawn manga stylings for three decades. Ultimately, though, he says that the team has managed to strike a good balance of pioneering unprecedented visual detail while also maintaining its old-school flair.
Only time will tell whether this shift to the RE Engine and bringing older characters into the series will work well or not, but one thing is for sure: we can’t wait to see what Ryu’s hadouken animation looks like by the time the Street Fighter 6 release date rolls around next year.