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Yoshinori Ono discusses Street Fighter 5's launch problems

"We underestimated the popularity of some of the single-player features…"

Street Fighter 5 - in gameplay terms - is a wonderful fighting game. But it launched in a sorry state, missing key single-player-focused modes.

Now, Street Fighter producer Yoshinori Ono has opened up about these launch woes, admitting the game failed to satisfy those who enjoy the single-player aspect of fighting games.

"I think it's safe to say that we underestimated the popularity of some of the single-player features," Ono said in an interview with Game Informer (via EventHubs).

"That said, we are excited about the two all-new single-player modes - character story and survival - and we have plans to continue to refine and expand onto those experiences."

Street Fighter 5 launched with limited, three-round character background stories, and a grindy survival mode people only really play because it unlocks new character colours. The game launched without an arcade mode or character combo trials. The "cinematic" story mode doesn't launch until June.

As a result, the game was criticised at launch for being barebones. (My Street Fighter 5 review goes into detail on much of this.) This led many to speculate Street Fighter 5's February release was rushed in order to get the game in the hands of competitive multiplayer enthusiasts ahead of key tournaments such as Final Round and NorCal Regionals 2016.

Ono said the Capcom Pro Tour had a hand in Street Fighter 5's February release - but he stopped short of blaming the game's launch state entirely on the ongoing, high-profile tournament.

"The Capcom Pro Tour wasn't the only reason for why the game was released when it was," he said.

"We understand that if we had more features ready at launch, it probably would've been better received by some of our more casual fans who tend to enjoy Street Fighter more via single-player content, as opposed to competitive play."

Street Fighter 5 has since ironed out its server problems, and most players enjoy a smooth, trouble-free online experience. But one of the game's biggest problems - a lack of a punishment for rage quitters - remains an issue.

Ono said Capcom was on the case, but there's no timeframe for this much-needed feature.

"We are putting in a lot of effort to smooth out the server problems and address issues such as rage quitters, which is affecting players' online experience," he said.

"Once we are able to implement all the fixes we have in store, I'm confident fans will enjoy the online experience that much more."

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