It’s been a tough road for Ryu users in Street Fighter 5. Although Ryu was considered a serious contender in Street Fighter 5 Season 1, the nerfs he suffered from Season 2 have made Street Fighter 5’s Ryu the target. of the jokes. for about four years. Looking back, Ryu was mostly just a level higher in Season 1 thanks to the existence of his launch loop, now-removed anti-aircraft jab, and his meterless and completely invincible Dragon Punches – tools no character should have in Street Fighter 5 at all. this moment. point.
For a long time, it felt like Ryu was designed differently from the rest of the cast. “Ryu is balanced, but he exists in a broken world” was basically the universal analysis on Ryu. It seemed like Ryu was suffering from some major design issues that had been actively ignored for years. To my amazement, Capcom has apparently addressed almost every complaint I’ve had about Ryu in Street Fighter 5 with the latest balance update.
My biggest complaint about Ryu in Street Fighter 5 was his inability to hit crouched opponents with certain moves. In previous versions of Street Fighter 5, Ryu’s Hurricane Kick specials and combo of targets would ring against a crouching character.
Of course, reacting to whether the enemy is crouching or standing during your combo used to be a staple of previous Street Fighter entries, but it seemed that only Ryu was affected by this design philosophy in Street Fighter 5.
Even other “Shoto” characters like Ken and Akuma were now suddenly gifted with Hurricane Kick specials that didn’t care if the opponent was standing or crouching. Ryu was “unique” in the sense that he did not get this benefit.
While Ryu could choose to end his combo with the Joudan Sokutogeri, also known as the “Donkey Kick”, the Hurricane Kick was naturally better at keeping Okizeme’s pressure on Ryu.
Players could simply fix this deficiency and easily react to the opponent, whether standing or crouching, but the question remained, “Why bother?”
There were plenty of fighters that were simply better than the Street Fighter poster boy who didn’t have to think about the enemy’s standing or crouching state any more when performing their combos.
Allowing Ryu to hit crouched opponents with the Hurricane Kick and use a variation on his target combo that also works against crouching not only makes Ryu easier to play, but allows him to more reliably ride Okizeme’s pressure. , an absolute must for any character to see any kind of competitive success in Street Fighter 5.
Another big change for Ryu was the extra frame advantage on the block from his half parry shot. It went from being +1 on the block to +2 on the block.
Against certain characters, Ryu wasn’t really able to frame the trap using his half parry strike despite having +1 on the block. Instead, he would have to use the half crouching punch.
At first it might have seemed like a fair trade-off as Ryu’s medium hit only required 5 starting frames, but this again didn’t compare well to characters like Ibuki or Necalli who had 5-frame medium buttons that were +2 on the block.
The patch also went to considerable lengths to undo the damage done to Ryu’s mid-range game from Season 2 when his crouching mid kick and crouching heavy kick received an additional starting frame. Capcom even went one step further by finally making its strong special punch cancellable out of its V-Trigger 1.
Ryu’s V-Triggers have also seen considerable improvements that make them useful in different ways. V-Trigger 1 gives your hits additional hitstun frames, while V-Trigger 2 allows you to add additional damage at the end of specials for the cost of V-Gauge. Prior to this patch, Ryu’s V-Trigger 1 only provided niche buffs, while V-Trigger 2 was nearly useless for competitive play.
The only thing about Ryu that didn’t cross my mind is that he still has one of the worst 3-frame light shots in the game. Since Ryu doesn’t bother to fully extend his arm, he has terrible reach. Still, with all these other crazy fans, I can’t help but think that this little thing might not matter.
It’s still very early in the new update, but I can’t help but feel very optimistic about Ryu’s potential. Capcom finally delivered exactly what the Street Fighter poster boy needed to potentially be a competitive challenger in the high-level game of Street Fighter 5. For my part, I’m looking forward (hopefully) to seeing players compete with Ryu.