There’s no doubt that Street Fighter V has been well received by the Fighting Game Community, considering it had over 5000 entries at EVO 2016 and hardcore fans have been generally satisfied by the new mechanics and changes. But the mainstream audience hasn’t been as pleased, critics and buyers heavily criticised the game for the lack of fundamental content like Arcade mode and a proper Story mode, and while Capcom has tried to win players back with constant updates, characters and fixes, it apparently has not been enough, because sales numbers from the last few months (from April to September) show that its performance was quite worrying.
According to data from Capcom’s very own website, Street Fighter V (both physical and digital versions) sold 1.4 million units by March 31st, 2016. And after seven months the numbers are still 1.4 million units, which means it hasn’t even sold 100,000 units since April. Fans have begged Capcom to stop selling the game normally and instead focus on a free to play seasonal format just like the Microsoft Exclusive Killer Instinct. Season 1 of Street Fighter V or to release an updated version similar to Super Street Fighter IV or Street Fighter III: Second Impact. But everyone agrees that the game needs a rebranding to get away of all of the negativity surrounding it.
I’m proud of Capcom for actually trying to fix things somewhat with the release of fan favorite characters, like Juri, Ibuki, or the american family man Guile. But this whole situation screams classic Capcom mistakes, they clearly targeted the eSports audience as their market for this one, and the numbers definitely show it. There’s a reason why Pokken Tournament and Super Smash Brothers 4 have been so successful, launching with quality content and casual accessibility is the key to success when making a fighting game, we can only hope Capcom will learn instead of just moving forward like no one’s complaining.