Twenty years ago today, Hadoukens and Shouryukens echoed throughout the world as Street Fighter 2 smashed its way into arcades.
Street Fighter 2: The World Warrior released in arcades on March 3, 1991. World Warrior was the sequel to Street Fighter, which appeared in arcades in 1987 and on various home consoles between 1988-9.
Capcom’s fighter featured eight characters; Ryu, E. Honda, Blanka, Guile, Ken, Chun-Li, Zangief, and Dhalsim. Each character came from a certain country and had their own special moves and abilities. They also had over 30 moves at their disposal. The goal of Street Fighter 2 is to win the World Warrior tournament sponsored by M. Bison, leader of the Shadoloo criminal organization. As far as the game’s story goes, each character had their own reasons for entering the tournament. For example, Guile entered the tournament to get revenge on M. Bison for killing his friend Charlie.
There are four bosses that the player must face throughout their journey; Vega, Balrog, Sagat, and M. Bison. The names of the bosses were switched around in the English version to avoid a lawsuit since Balrog is a boxer with a distinct resemblance to Mike Tyson. M. Bison was the powerful final boss with the wicked Psycho Power. These four characters became playable in later updated versions.
The arcade version’s intro and gameplay:
Street Fighter 2 was developed by Yoshiki Okamoto and his team at Capcom. Close to 60,000 arcade cabinets were shipped around the world when the game released.
A port of the arcade version made its first console appearance on the Super Nintendo in June 1992 in Japan and in July for the United States. As of May 2008 the SNES version of Street Fighter 2 Capcom’s best-selling console games of all time with 6.3 million copies sold.
Street Fighter 2 is without a doubt one of the most influential video games ever created. The arcade cabinet featured a six button layout while a majority of games at the time only used two. The game was one of the first of its kind to include so many characters, moves, and different combo variations. It also was one of the first competitive video games at such a wide scale level. Many fighting games afterward borrowed elements from Street Fighter 2 or downright shamelessly copied them.
The game also spawned several updates in the months to follow. These new titles were for arcades, with some of them being ported to home consoles. These updates added new characters, moves, and color schemes. They also changed the games’ speed:
- Street Fighter 2: Special Championship Edition (April 1992)
- Street Fighter 2: Hyper Fighting (December 1992)
- Super Street Fighter 2 (October 1993)
- Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo (March 1994)
- Hyper Street Fighter 2: The Anniversary Edition (December 2003)
Here’s some of the home systems the original Street Fighter 2 has appeared on:
- Super Nintendo (July 1992)
- Commodore 64 (1992)
- Atari-ST (1992)
- MS-DOS (1992)
- Game Boy (September 1995)
- Wii; Virtual Console (Dec. 25, 2006)
The game has also been re-released on various collections over the years. Here’s a few collections it’s been included on:
- Capcom Classics Collection Volume 1 (PlayStation 2, Xbox; Sept. 27, 2005)
- Capcom Classics Collection Reloaded (PSP; Oct. 24, 2006)
- Street Fighter Collection 2 (PlayStation 1; Nov. 19, 1998, Sega Saturn; Dec. 3, 1998)
Check out the Commodore 64 version!:
The Street Fighter series continues to be a dominant force in gaming. Millions of quarters later, Street Fighter 2 has created millions of memories and passionate fans.
SF2 Intro Screen by Roedie / Moby Games
SF2 SNES cover by psychofish / Moby Games