All Street Fighter 5 Gameplay DLC Will Be Free, if You're Willing to Play Enough

Capcom takes a wildly different approach to post-launch updates for the new Street Fighter.

285 Comments

Update: Capcom has clarified that it's specifically "gameplay" content that you'll be able to earn for free by playing. This leaves the door open for things like cosmetic items (costumes and the like) to be only available by purchasing them with real-world money.

Original Story: During a Street Fighter V panel at Evo 2015, Capcom revealed details about how it will handle post-launch content for the upcoming fighting game. It intends to only ever offer a single disc, and players will be able get all future DLC either by paying or simply playing the game.

Capcom set this up by taking a look back at how Street Fighter IV was handled. Following the release of the base game, there were a number of major updates released in bundle form over the years--Super Street Fighter IV, SSF IV: Arcade Edition, Ultra Street Fighter IV. Capcom said this had the benefit of reviving interest every few years, but it was hard to keep players engaged in the interim, and it punished those who took a break and came back to find out they had to spend money to play.

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Rather than go that route again, Capcom plans to introduce new characters individually. Capcom says this will ensure there's always something to look forward to, and the regular addition of new characters will keep the competitive scene fresh. This also allows players to pick and choose which characters they want, rather than be forced into picking up a whole Super or Ultra-sized package.

While this isn't a new approach to DLC outside of the Street Fighter series, what is different from most games is how you won't be forced to pay for anything. All balance and system updates will be free, while DLC characters can be purchased through a new in-game currency system. There are two types of currency: Fight Money, earned by playing the game, and Zenny, which can be bought with real-world money to unlock new content without needing to grind.

Capcom thinks this will offer "more long-term engagement, because the more you play, the more you are awarded." Additionally, it says this route avoids dividing the player base by releasing an update you have to pay for. Those who don't spend a dime beyond the cost of the game itself can simply play with the characters they have available to them.

Capcom also revealed that the game's core roster consists of 16 characters, four of which are brand new to the franchise. A new character is to be unveiled on Sunday, July 19, during the Evo finals for Ultra Street Fighter IV.

Street Fighter V is coming to PS4 and PC next spring. A PS4 beta is set to kick off on July 23 and will run through July 28, to be followed by a PS4 and PC beta this fall. A third beta will then follow at an unspecified time. Among other things, these betas will be used to tweak the in-game currency system.

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stinkytofus

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Its a good way... Pay to get more content or play to get more content...

U buy regular ss5 for 60, the super somes out, another 40, then arcade comes out, another 40 then ultra comes out, another 40, thats 180 already

Or pay 60 and play till u can buy everything with in game currency, win for players and developers imo

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Jestersmiles

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They also said there would be no ultra sf4, guess whats on steam now? Yeah lets trust capcom to keep their word. I am sure they are trust worthy :D.

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jerusaelem

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This is honestly a pretty decent option in theory. It potentially shafts the people that just want to have some friends over and pop in SFV though.

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jark888

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I'm sure many fans would be happy about this news compared to the old method.

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Stogin

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I'll take a wait and see on this, I'm definitely buying the game, but my experiences with this sort of thing haven't been good at all. Hope it's not too outrageous how much you have to play to get this Fight Money.

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xwulfd

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So basically its microtransaction , its hilarious on how they put text flavors to their explanation rofl

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Damnation_6

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So Street Fighter goes the League of Legends route...tho you will have to pay for the base game. ...Well...still better then the Killer Instinct model I suppose.

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XxstrghtmnyxX

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Its simple, buy the game used at a cheaper overall price, then buy the DLC.

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Lionheart8472

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This sounds like a great idea to me. Even if you have to play 50 hours to unlock a character still isn't that terrible.

I would rather it go this route rather than having to buy a new game every so often and leave people behind who rather not buy it.

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Avatar image for Bread_or_Decide
Bread_or_Decide

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Play two hundred hours to unlock a new character.

Or pay $5.99 to get them now.

Live or die. Make your choice.

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jark888

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Edited By jark888

@Bread_or_Decide: I wish Capcom read your comment. LOL.

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MegaPhilX2

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Edited By MegaPhilX2

This sounds good, because SF is the kind of game people will play a lot to get good anyway.
What isn't good is that the norm is now pretty much officially releasing unfinished games.

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gengis21

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Edited By gengis21

SFVF2P

(STREET FIGHTER V FREE 2 PLAY}

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deactivated-5b797108c254e

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I'm ok with this and plan to unlock through play...if someone wants to spend money on characters to get them faster because they don't have the time or the patience then I'm glad they're able to. I don't see the problem.

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Khasym

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@korvus: I think there might be a fun little realization starting to go through the big name gaming devs: trying to SELL microtransactions in a game someone has bought, just isn't going to work. You can throw in pay to skip or crappy little costumes for a fairly cheap amount. But characters, stages etc., it's just not gonna get anything but lousy press and fewer sales.

Now, all we need to do is gut those development studios that keep trying to shoehorn in on disc DLC, and pre-order exclusive content, and the world can be paradise. :-)

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Code135

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Hahahahaha, no.

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GunEye

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Edited By GunEye

I don't get to play too many fighting games, and I was never a big Street Fighter fan, however I almost-support this move (kind of). No doubt the level of grind needed to buy a character would most likely be ridiculously high and time consuming, however the fact that all SUPER/ULRA/EXTEND/ULTIMATE versions would actually be folded into the original Street Fighter 5 game - is good news.

This is unlike the notoriously cash-grabbing approach of Arc System Works - creators of BlazBlue and Guilty Gear Xrd, who ripped players off time and again by releasing a re-release versions of the full game + some minor content and DLCS.

YES- I am talking about releasing Continuum Shift, and then shortly after Continuum Shift EXTEND. Basically the same game, but players of the first CF had to re-purchase the original game pay over 50-60$ (and much higher at some countries like mine) to receive it. If such fans and players don't buy the newer versions, they will face dwindling playing base to play with online, be foreign to the community and won't enjoy the re balancing, new moves, new characters and story.

That same B.S was used AGAIN in Chrono Phantasma, when they recently released CP EXTEND. Again, no pay 5$-10$ to upgrade is offered. If you want to stay competitive and keep up with the series, you must re-pay and spend even more money on the same game (60$+).

And yet again the same dirty trick approach with Guilty Gear XRD: a game that intentionally lacked characters from the original roster: Then they announced Revolator (EXTEND whatever) - same game plus extra characters, no DLC upgrade option, forcing/prompting you to re-buy the whole damn game again.

We saw it again with Dargon's Dogma Dark Arisen (CAPCOM), and even worse Dark Souls 2 $cholar's of the First $in - the Cash Grab (PC > PC DX11).

Splitting the player pool, killing the original game's online activity, forcing fans to re-buy the same game with shining extras - money grabbing fans at its best.

But again, I doubt this "play to unlock" system is gonna work, knowing Capcom, it will probably be pay to win again.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

So it's microtransactions instead. The "pay to unlock faster!" kind. You know, some of the worst? Because then they design the game to slow your acquisition of the currency to unlock it, frustrating you to just spend some money to make the timewall go away?

Screw you Capcom. Make it free. Make it ALL free. Or take the microtransactions out.

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Lionheart8472

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@Thanatos2k: It is all free, you just have to put time into it.

If you are one of those people that would rather buy the new game every year and a half, you'll be the same person coughing up the $5.99 or whatever it is for a new character.

Me I rather play the game and store currency and buy what I want for free.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@Lionheart8472: "It is all free, you just have to put time into it."

Just like a free to play mobile game with microtransactions to make things faster.

Oh, but the game is $60.

See, you've fallen for the Crapcom trap. You're pathetically trying to rationalize it as "Well, it's better than having to rebuy the game repeatedly!" instead of "This should all just be released for free" which is the correct logic.

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drknessfeeds

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@Thanatos2k: agree with you, what happened to unlocking characters by going through the arcade mode? Miss those days.

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Stogin

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@drknessfeeds: Man I miss those days too. I used to love not knowing who was going to be unlocked next on my next playthrough. Being surprised by the new additions to the roster.

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GunEye

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@Thanatos2k: definitely agree with you. This re-release routine is getting awfully annoying. re-buy the whole game, fully priced, or be left with a dying, vacant game in your hands. While also throwing annoying DLC offers at you. PAY PAY PAY..
They don't give a damn that players pay from 60$ to as much as 90$+ on the original game, only to see other players (suckers) "upgrade" to an "Extended" version. Dark Souls 2 Scholars (PC), Dark Arisen, BlazBlue, Guilty Gear XRD - all good examples of this B.S.

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Boddicker

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Edited By Boddicker

Exactly how many hours of gameplay are we talking about to unlock a DLC character?

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BoxOfPocky

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@Boddicker: Gonna take a wild guess here, but I'm gonna say between forever and an eternity if you have a life outside of the game.

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Zeek_Fox

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I really hope Smash 4 adopts something like this. I have thousands of gold ingame...but they still want me to drop extra dollars to unlock DLC characters that are already downloaded to my system because people can play them against me when I go online. Why can't I just unlock them with gold?

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PosiTVEMinD355

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A part of me is excited but the other part of me remembers that this IS Capcom we're talking about. A single SF game for an entire gen seems to good to be true and so does DLC that can be unlocked. I guess we just have to wait and let time tell. At least I got my Franken-Charlie.

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ballaShotCaller

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@PosiTVEMinD355: This gen will be much shorter than the last.

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deactivated-5c0b07b32bf03

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@ballashotcaller: Nah you just hope it will because the XB1 is losing.

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gunswordfist

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I was bugged when I heard that launch will only have 16 characters but I had forgot SF IV only had 16 (seriously, that's really hard to believe..whoa) initially and I love that we never have to pay for DLC or even worse, new discs. Well, I hope that's true. Don't mess this up, Capcom...

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PosiTVEMinD355

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@gunswordfist: Arcade version had 19, console version 25

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LordOssiss

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Looks like Street Fighter is pulling a DBZ with their Zeni.

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deactivated-5b797108c254e

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@lordossiss: Zeny (zenny, zeni...plenty of word variations) is actually a quite common imaginary currency in Japanese games. Think the first time I saw it was on Ragnarok Online in 2003 but I'm sure it was used before that.

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LordOssiss

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@korvus: Dragon Ball has been using Zeni since 1984.

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deactivated-5b797108c254e

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@lordossiss: You learn something every day =D

Also I read DBX (as in Xenoverse) in your post...you said DBZ so yeah that is a lot older than RO =P

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rapirap

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With this system you can grind it with a friend. Take turns in winning to get fight money or zennies.

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CapmJim

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Welcome to Microtransaction hell Street Fighter. Have fun spending thousands of hours to unlock everything for free.

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kazeswen

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Edited By kazeswen

@CapmJim: I actually prefer this then 4 different Street Fighter builds. SFIV had 4 builds, SFIV, Super SFIV, Super SFIV Arcade, Ultra SFIV. At the end I had no idea which one to play or to master, cause I had friends all with different versions, it became impossible to play anyone I knew online cause they were all good at different versions.

Thank god, Capcom is moving to microtransaction method, at least now I can spend all my time playing just one game, and not waste my time with others. I can also choose what characters I want to buy vs having to get a brand new game just for characters like the oily man that I couldn't care less about.

I will buy one DLC Guile, that's it.

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gunswordfist

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@kazeswen: I just see this as a bunch of free unlockable characters, myself. Since unlocking new characters is the best incentive for me to keep on playing a fighting game, I have no complaints whatsoever. Also, I'll be like 5 year until I get a PS4 anyway. :P

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CapmJim

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Edited By CapmJim

@kazeswen:

I agree with you there. Its better than coming out with a bunch of new games. I am actually glad to hear there is only 1 version. I just hope they don't make it almost impossible to unlock characters or make it take 1000 hours just to force sales of Microtransactions.

Then again i guess you can just look at is as buy the characters i want.

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MigGui

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this is both good news and bad news. good news is, balance fixes are free, new fighters are kind of free. bad news is, a 16-fighter roster is the smallest since SFII. and the grinding may take forever, of course.

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omnifas215

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Edited By omnifas215

@MigGui: ...SFIV(pre super) had 16 if you don't count the hidden Akuma, Gouken or seth, SFIII:New Generation had 11, 2nd impact added 3(+1 since yun and yang became unique), and 3rd Strike added 5.

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Gregabyte

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So now my question is, will this game support one SFV profile across both PC and PS4? If I happen to buy both versions, will my progress across both carry over?

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smallboy944

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I would love this, Since i dont got a PSN Card yet.

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shiss27

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That's a nice article but I need to hear Justin Wong and Daigo's opinions.

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Thanatos2k

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Edited By Thanatos2k

@shiss27: Didn't you hear? Daigo quit he's an accountant now.

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Terminator95

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ONLY on the SONY PS4.

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ShimmeringSword

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@Terminator95: Microsoft PC wants a word with you, fanboy.

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normanislost

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@Terminator95: and PC....

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