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Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition
A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this game.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that Street Fighter V is a fighting game, plain and simple, and combat is the core gameplay mechanic. Players can fight using hands, feet, weapons, and magic to defeat enemies. There's light blood shown in combat, and fighters cry out in pain and dramatically fall to the ground when defeated. Women (and men) are dressed very provocatively, but women's outfits leave very little to the imagination. There's some profanity, such as "bastard," "bitch," and "ass." Players may be frustrated with the controls, because while the game is easy to get into, success really only comes with mastering the various offensive and defensive moves. Parents should also be aware that online matches aren't monitored, potentially exposing players to inappropriate language.
- Parents say
- Kids say
What's it about?
The iconic fighting-game franchise is back in STREET FIGHTER V: ARCADE EDITION, and this time it's powered by next-generation graphics, multiple game modes, cross-platform play between PlayStation 4 and Windows PC users, and some free downloadable content -- including new characters and balancing tweaks -- rolled out over time. It retains much of what the series is best known for: male and female fighters, each with their own fighting style, weapons, and special moves, with your goal being to enter a round with an adversary and emerge victorious. Only by mastering the offensive EX attacks and defensive moves as well as studying the opponent (to counter that opponent's strengths) will you be the last person standing. Classic characters such as Ryu and Ken are back, as are many new challengers. The season 3 update for the Arcade Edition includes Sakura and will add five additional characters over time, boosting the roster to more than 30 fighters. The new battle system is employed to add more depth and strategy for veteran players, as well as an extra V-trigger for opponent takedowns. Along with solo play, side-by-side matches, and online matchmaking, this game includes access to the Capcom Pro Tour, an online league for competitive fighting games, with dozens of tournaments and $500,000 in prizes, the largest in franchise history. The Arcade Edition also includes an Arcade mode that provides new personal stories for fighters across Street Fighter 1-5 and Street Fighter Alpha. Additional images for each fighter can be unlocked and found in an expanded gallery. Players can also partner up in team battles and challenge each other to see who's left standing, while the Extra mode provides online challenges for players to earn Fight Money, experience for levels, costumes, and other bonuses.
Is it any good?
The latest installment of this fighter finally turns this brawler into the game it was meant to be when it was originally released two years ago. Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition comes as a free update to owners of the original Street Fighter V, or as a standalone game for newcomers, but its extra content is notable. With the inclusion of Sakura as the start of the season 3 content, the roster of playable characters will top more than 30 fighters by the end of 2018. On top of the V-gauge system, fighters now get an extra V-trigger, providing more powerful attacks that force players to reexamine their tactics against opponents. The Team mode also lets players pick to fight on the Blue or Red team, and determine who the best players happen to be; options include winners staying on until they lose or best of round series. This is perfect when you have friends over and want to test your skills without going online against random players.
Further building on the gameplay is the Extra Challenge mode, online fights where you'll be tasked with brawling against a series of enemies and beating them within a certain time period. Completing these fights will provide you with a ton of Fight Money, experience for your online rankings, exclusive costume skins for fighters, and more. This is a great way to test and keep your skills sharp for the other game modes. But the true standout is the addition of Arcade mode, which takes you through a chronological tour of Street Fighter 1-5 and Street Fighter Alpha. While it limits the roster to fighters that were appropriate for the release of that game (with some obvious liberties taken to add brawlers), it provides players with unique stories and endings for each fighter in each one of these games. On top of that, players who complete certain conditions in matches will unlock unique artwork for each character in the expanded gallery. This builds more content into the game past the previously included Story mode, and makes even the most specialized player want to revisit other characters to unlock their secrets. If there were downsides to this mode, it would be that the retail version includes season 1 and 2 content free of charge, while prior owners had to pay for each season individually. Additionally, Fight Money unlockables are ridiculously overpriced, forcing players to fight lots of matches to afford them or either pay real money for virtual currency. These are minor flaws to this vastly improved version of the popular fighting franchise. Veteran fans or newcomers to the series really should get their hands on Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition and step into the virtual fighting arena.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about violence in the media. Do parents mind fighting games such as Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition because they're clearly over the top and not as gory as, for example, Mortal Kombat? Do the improved graphics make Street Fighter V look more realistic than previous installments? Is there a concern that this is still a fighting game and could desensitize players to real-world violence?
Talk about sex, gender, and body image. Why do you think the female characters wear so little or have overemphasized features? Why are the male characters not shown in the same way? What do you think this says about the image of the female fighters in the game?
Discuss consumerism in games. Does it feel like Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition is trying to squeeze players for more money with its options to pay for items using cash or Fight Money, especially when Fight Money items are so expensive? Why do you think season 1 and 2 content for the game was included for free with the retail edition, while owners of the previous game had to pay for it?
- Platforms: PlayStation 4, Windows, Xbox One
- Price: $39.99
- Pricing structure: Paid
- Available online? Available online
- Developer: Capcom
- Release date: January 16, 2018
- Genre: Fighting
- Topics: Magic and Fantasy, Sports and Martial Arts, Brothers and Sisters, Misfits and Underdogs
- ESRB rating: T for Mild Language, Suggestive Themes, Violence, Mild Blood
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Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are created by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.