A game series today is regarded as successful if it survives for a few years on the global market, much less if it survives for more than three decades. The 1987 arcade game created by Capcom is one such title that has withstood the test of time and demonstrated its durability. Yes, we’re talking about Street Fighter. The company managed to gain huge commercial success in arcades and revolutionize the fighting-based style of games with its first-ever competitive fighting game. They’ve introduced special attacks and fighting combinations that have established the standard of later fighting games.

Let’s review the game on its 35th anniversary; if you’ve never heard of it, now is the perfect moment to explore the world of retro arcades.


The first Street Fighter game was created and directed by Takashi Nishiyama, gaining the motivation and inspiration for the game from earlier Beat‘em Up games such as Kung-Fu Master. Influenced by popular Japanese shonen manga for the concept, the first port of the game was released in 1988. Its sequel, Street Fighter II, released in 1991, gradually evolved the original version’s gameplay, this time to renowned worldwide success. Spawning other games like Capcom’s Final Fight and SNK’s Fatal Fury: King of Fighters, its influence can be seen even from its starting days.

It is so well known that there are even popular casino-based games with their likeness, with NetEnt’s Thai casino slot game being one of the best examples that come to mind.


So, how is this game played? The aim of the game is for the player to win a series of one-on-one matches. This can be done either by fighting a computer-controlled opponent or a player controlled by another person. The match ends either by knockout or by the time expiring, with the winner being the player with the most energy left.

The single-player mode comprises a series of battles against several opponents from different nations. At the start of the game, the player chooses a starting point from Japan or the USA, fighting players from different countries every time you defeat an opponent. To spice up the gameplay, additional bonus levels offer more points, such as the brick breaking and table breaking. Once the main player defeats eight opponents, you travel to Thailand and face the final two opponents of the game.

By using alternative combinations of the attack buttons, players can perform several different attacks and moves from any kind of position. Some special moves and techniques require specific button inputs, of which the most legendary are:

  • Psycho Fire: known as Hadoken, or Wave Motion Fist
  • Hurricane Kick: known as Tatsumaki Senpu Kyaku, or Tornado Whirlwind Leg
  • Dragon Punch: known as Shoryuken, or Rising Dragon Fist

Simple, elegant, and highly addictive, this perfect blend of time-controlled mayhem has seen unparalleled success in the fighting-style games industry. The fact it is the first game to use the concept is why it has its place as an innovator in the gaming industry.

Arcade Versions

Despite it being a multiplatform game today, Street Fighter’s beginnings were on a much older, now obsolete gaming platform – the Arcade. There were two main arcade versions of the game. The regular version was sold as a tablet cabinet in Japan, using a six-button configuration, while the Deluxe cabinet featured a two-pressure sensitive pad.

Interestingly, in international versions of the game, the main characters Ryu and Ken’s voices were dubbed and translated. This was done so that their attacks would be in English to gain popularity and fame in English-speaking countries. Until Street Fighter 4, the Japanese voices were left intact, but from that version onwards, the games contained English voice acting.


One of the highest-grossing fighting video game franchises of all time, with 500,000 arcade units sold and US $ 12.2 billion worldwide, Street Fighter is one for the history books. In fact, even now, it is the third recording-selling game series of Capcom. Spawning 5 direct sequels and many spinoffs and branches of related games, the influence of Street Fighter is unparalleled in the game industry today, much as the series itself. Although 35 years old, the game’s latest edition is still expected to come out sometime in 2023, with improved animation, new fighters and venues, and surely much more features.

Here’s to hoping the latest edition of this magnificent game keeps on evolving and prospering through time and captures the imagination of the newest generation of fighting game players.