'Street Fighter V' gets two much-needed updates this month

Better tutorials and online functionality are on the way.

When Street Fighter V launched last month, it was criticised by the press and fans alike for its lack of in-game content. The engine and mechanics were solid, but it lacked the story mode, tutorials and several online features present in Street Fighter IV. While not a complete fix, a free patch dropping on March 28th should add some of the worst omissions. A new Challenge Mode, for instance, will add "demonstration" tutorials aimed at beginner, intermediate and advanced players. These will culminate in "trials" designed to test your knowledge of basic and pro combos.

While the story mode remains threadbare, Capcom is working to improve its online multiplayer system. The new DLC will add eight-person lobbies that also support match spectating so you can scout your opponents and pick up new techniques. After playing a ranked or casual match, you'll also have the option of turning it into a two or three-round set. Both players will need to agree in order to lock in the rematch scenario, however.

On March 30th, a second update will add Alex as a playable character. The fan favorite was introduced in Street Fighter III, but didn't make the roster in Street Fighter IV. He'll be available from the in-game shop and unlockable using the Fight Money system. In the future, you'll be able to purchase characters and other content using Zenny, or real money, but this mechanism won't be ready for the March update. An awful lot of Fight Money is needed to unlock characters, so Alex will be accessible to everyone as a "trial" until the Zenny system is implemented.

Capcom wants to repair the damage inflicted by Street Fighter V's lightweight launch offering. Updates are on the way, including a new and improved story mode, but it'll take a lot to remove the bitter taste left by its initial release. At the moment, it feels very much like a game in Early Access, not one commanding a $60 price tag.