There’s never been a better time to be a fighting game fan. There are almost a dozen new upcoming fighting games coming out in the next year or so. From new DLC for games like Guilty Gear Strive to the upcoming Street Fighter VI and Tekken 8. For a while, there was a drought in the genre, to the point that its only representation was in Smash clones and new Mortal Kombat games. But now the genre is back on the rise. Here is an overview of all the upcoming fighting games you can look forward to in the next few months and beyond.
Street Fighter 6
After seven years, we’re finally getting a new Street Fighter game. Street Fighter V was very controversial upon release. Partly because of its odd art direction, partly because of the lack of an arcade mode upon release, SFV ended up falling behind other games at the time, as well as other entries in the series. But the new game looks to be a massive improvement upon its predecessor.
From an incredible art design powered by the RE Engine to some fantastic newcomers like the drunken master Jamie and Kimberly, a ninja who uses spray cans as weapons. Street Fighter 6 also includes some brand-new mechanics and new control schemes that make it more friendly to newcomers. Street Fighter 6 is coming on June 2nd, 2023, and will be getting new DLC characters intermittently over the next few years. You’d be hard-pressed to find an upcoming fighting game that is better than the new Street Fighter.
Just one year prior to the release of Street Fighter V, Tekken 7 was also released. Unlike SFV, Tekken 7 was a huge success. It got several DLC characters, including guest characters like Noctis from Final Fantasy XV and Negan from The Walking Dead. It also received major representation in many fighting game tournaments, namely EVO. Last year Tekken 8 was announced, revealing a cinematic trailer that featured series mainstays, Jin Kazama and Kazuya Mishima.
Over the last few months, Tekken 8 has released several trailers for many returning characters, from the lightning-themed Lars Alexandersson to the wrestling master King. Series creator Katsuhiro Harada has talked at length about the more aggressive gameplay style that the sequel will hold, and the new mechanics that will come with that philosophy. While there isn’t an official release date at the moment, Bandai Namco has mentioned that they are aiming for a 2023 fiscal year release date. Chances are, we’ll learn more at either Summer Games Fest or the upcoming EVO 2023 in August.
Mortal Kombat 1
People have been anticipating many of the games on this list for almost five years or more. One example is Mortal Kombat 1. The last Mortal Kombat was released in 2019 with Mortal Kombat 11. MK1 will be a reboot of the franchise that will be released later this year in September 2023. At the moment, there isn’t a lot known about how the game will play. All that we do know is that it will feature some form of assist mechanic similar to Marvel Vs. Capcom with the Kameo fighters. Characters like Liu Kang, Kitana, Raiden, Mileena, and more are also set to return.
What is interesting about the new release is how this is the first time that a new Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter, and a new Tekken will release so close to each other. It’ll be interesting to see how these titles collide and what kind of support they’ll have after release.
Odds and Ends
There are a lot more upcoming fighting games beyond just Tekken, Street Fighter, and Mortal Kombat. Most of these games don’t have any set release dates beyond just coming soon. For example, there is a new Fatal Fury/Garou set to release at some point. Garou: Mark of the Wolves was released in 1999 as a separate game in tandem with The King of Fighters series.
Also in development is Project L. A fighting game based on the world of League of Legends, Project L is set to be an assist-based fighter, much like Marvel vs. Capcom. For both it and Garou, a release date hasn’t been confirmed yet, but it stands to reason we’ll probably hear more about both before the end of the year.
And of course, there are many new DLC editions to games like Guilty Gear and King of Fighters. There is the indie scene with games like Skullgirls. And there is the upcoming Multiversus, a smash clone based on Warner Bros. and all their properties.
There is also the community scene for many of these games. Namely, Marvel vs. Capcom 3‘s growing mod scene. The community has taken it upon themselves to insert characters like Gambit, Evil Ryu, and even Leon Kennedy into MvC3, complete with custom animations and move sets. No matter your favorite franchise, there has never been a better time to be a fighting game fan.
What Comes Next
Even now, there are still so many loose ends. So many franchises that haven’t gotten entries in years that absolutely deserve a return on modern hardware. For one, there is Killer Instinct. The last Killer Instinct came out in 2013 on the Xbox One exclusively. It was a massively successful and beloved entry in the genre that got years of support through seasons and free DLC characters. A new Killer Instinct would be a great addition to the Xbox Series X|S’s lineup.
People have also been wanting a new Versus game for years now. Whether it be Capcom vs SNK or Marvel vs. Capcom, both would likely attain massive success upon their return. A Marvel vs. Capcom game especially would benefit from SF6‘s engine, along with Capcom and Marvel’s growing success.
Time will only tell if these franchises end up returning or not. But as we near closer to SF6′s release, it’s safe to say that fighting game fans will be eating well for the next few years.
Final Weapon’s Coverage of Upcoming Fighting Games
Stay tuned to Final Weapon for more of our coverage of upcoming fighting games!