While the Street Fighter 5 panel at New York Comic Con today didn't offer much in the way of new information about next year's PlayStation 4 and Windows PC game, fighting game diehards didn't seem to mind.
During a presentation filled with upcoming products (Street Fighter Funko Pop vinyl figures that arrive in 2016; a comic series starting in December; skateboards and more) as well as reiterations of the upcoming beta test and DLC plans, every mention of Capcom's long-running fighting game series held the audience rapt.
Nothing got the crowd going more than the surprise appearance of series creator Yoshinori Ono, who arrived in full costume and passed out lenticular card keychains adorned with Ryu to those lucky enough to have aisle seats.
After taking the stage, Ono became the official overseer of an impromptu battle royale. This mini-tournament came after an explanation of the franchise's larger premier league. Players worldwide compete to take part in the Capcom Cup, which takes place this year in San Francisco on Dec. 6.
Fans in the packed panel room fought to be selected by the developer to participate in a quick series of rounds in the new game. The ultimate winner received a limited edition Street Fighter-themed PlayStation 4 console on the spot.
The matches took place on the game's newly announced New York-themed stage, which made is playable for the first time on the show floor this weekend. Eagle-eyed fans will notice someone familiar in the background: Alex, a fighter whose last starring role was in Street Fighter 3: 3rd Strike. Ono also acknowldeged fans' desire for the character's expanded role in the game.
Street Fighter 5 is still set for a 2016 launch window on PlayStation 4 and Windows PC. Those who are just as, if not more excited for the new game as the Comic Con crowd should remember to pre-order before Oct. 22 for access to its second beta, which will offer six playable characters, leaderboards and improved matchmaking functionality.
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