Yoshinori Ono, executive producer for Street Fighter 5, is a very nice man who does not deserve the stresses of constant leaks for his game. Sadly, he's also directing a franchise which has released betas on to PC for the very first time and, unsurprisingly, this means all sorts of information has gotten out regarding the development and future plans for the game. This time around audio files have been found for an in-game announcer, including the six DLC characters that were teased as part of Paris Games Week.
The current official character list for SF5 stands at fifteen. It will expand soon.
The audio files were posted on Reddit, though fansite Shoryuken has nicely made them playable in-browser without a dodgy RAR download. Along with the fifteen characters available now and Fan, the rumoured boss-character who was datamined in an earlier leak, the DLC characters will be:
- Guile - series mainstay and charge character from Street Fighter 2. Best theme tune in video games.
- Balrog - aka Boxer, another SF2 original who has never been a fan of using his legs. This man will be glad he's back.
- Ibuki - Originally from SF3, ninja-girl Ibuki also popped up in SF4. The vortex comes to SF5.
- Juri - An SF4 debuting character, Juri's all about the kicks and has a ready-made V-trigger in the form of the Feng Shui Engine.
- Alex - SF3 grappler who hasn't shown up in any other games so far. Big on his suplexes.
- Urien - Large naked SF3 man and my personal favourite. Some of the sweetest combos of all time, aided by the Aegis Reflector. Crush, crush, crush, destroy, AEGIS REFLECTOR.
The big surprise from this and other leaks is the lack of Akuma, one of the most popular characters in the franchise, a powerhouse in-fiction and a key component of the storyline, which is supposedly taking a larger role this time around. Whether he is more cunningly hidden as a secret unlockable or is simply sitting this one out until some time in 2017 remains to be seen.
The files also suggest a ranking system that goes from Rookie through now-standard Bronze to Diamond then Master, Warlord and Hero at the very top. These have sub-categories within them, including the wonderfully named Super Bronze. Beyond that, various events that are part of the Capcom Pro Tour Premier program have announcements, suggesting they will be at least advertised if not watchable in-game. Hopefully this means not only more Dota 2-style integration for the excellent e-sports side of the game, but more knowledge of that spreading to the general playerbase too.
There's some discussion on Reddit as to whether this may mean the end of PC betas for SF5. Given companies like Blizzard, who have been doing these for going on ten years now, still haven't managed to find reliable ways to cover up all the development tracks within their files, just implementing counter-measures is unlikely for a console-focused studio like Capcom. It's very possible that, with no promises of more betas made, Capcom won't want to risk more information (and pirated copies) leaking onto the internet and will keep betas PS4-only until release in February.