The current overseer of the Street Fighter series, Yoshinori Ono, has said in an interview with Destructoid that ground-up reboot of the series in the same vein as Street Fighter III won’t happen again “as long as I’m [Ono] involved.”
What we actually learned through from Street Fighter III and putting in all those new characters we found out that the really hardcore people really enjoy it. They really enjoyed playing all the new characters and figuring out how to use them, but it was very difficult to bring back the old generation of players who played Street Fighter II because they weren’t sure, ‘Who is this character? Why should I care about them? Why should I play this game?’
Ono refers to the influx of new characters that featured in Street Fighter III, a main entry that featured no returning fighters from past entries aside from Ryu, Ken, Chun-Li and Akuma. Many have attributed this fact as being the reason that the sequel sold rather poorly when it originally released in 1997, and why there was a gap of almost 10 years between it and Street Fighter IV – a game which Ono also worked on, and is credited for reinvigorating the franchise.
Despite the fact that Street Fighter III (particularly the updated Third Strike version) became extremely popular among fans in later years, Ono still seems to think that it was a bad idea to try and sell the game without any fan service.
Now I’ve reached this super high point in the Street Fighter series…I can very safely say that as long as I’m involved in the game we won’t be taking that approach, of a lot of brand new characters.
What’s interesting though, is that Street Fighter V‘s first set of DLC characters will mark the return of two native Street Fighter III characters: Alex and Urien. Ono might be smart in not taking the same risks again as Capcom took before, but he obviously recognizes the love a lot of fans have for Street Fighter III’s fighters.
Street Fighter V releases for PC and PlayStation 4 on February 16, and it’s going to have the most elaborate story of any game in the series to date, says Capcom. Additionally, if you want to read the full interview with Ono, head over here.