As well as extra content, Arcade Edition’s tweaked menus cut down on the waiting between matches.
While Street Fighter 5 Arcade Edition is mostly being touted for how it’s a version of SF5 that now has the content that the otherwise excellent game sorely lacked at launch, it’s also making some nice quality-of-life changes to the game in areas like loading.
Sometimes you just want to boot up Street Fighter and get into a match fast. Maybe you have friends over, or maybe you’re hopping online in a brief window of quiet around your house. Street Fighter 5 was never quite the fastest-loading of fighters initially, and though it didn’t quite have the painfully slow loads of Tekken 7 or Injustice 2 they were still significant enough to occasionally leave you tapping your foot.
Through a combination of reducing the amount of flashy pre-match music and animation in the menus and improving load times, Capcom has managed to shave some time off how long it takes you to get from your final decision-making button press on the character select screen to the actual match. It’s a small difference of a few seconds, but when matches of Street Fighter can be over in just a minute or two, it’s going to add up fast.
In the above video we take a quick look, comparing Vanilla Street Fighter 5 to Arcade Edition on both the PS4 Pro and PC. We test out a few stages with different characters, and the result is generally that the game is around 3 seconds faster on PC and around 2 seconds faster on PS4 Pro on average than vanilla SF5.
The longest wait prior to Arcade Edition was 18 seconds on PS4, while the slowest is now 15 on the same platform. The PC version now gets close to 10-second loads, which is pretty decent all-told.
These may seem like small gains, but if you play several matches in a row this’ll quickly add up. PC users will continue to be held to PS4 load times when you fight a PS4 player online using cross-platform matchmaking, so they’ll only see the benefits online when playing other PC users – but the benefit will of course be constant offline.
Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition is out now as a free update for existing Street Fighter 5 owners and includes new single-player options including special boss battles and a much-requested proper arcade mode complete with unique character-specific endings. A new boxed version of the game is also available at retail from this week – that boxed version also includes the first two years of Street Fighter 5’s character expansions – an extra 12 characters in total.