In 1993, SEGA released Virtua Fighter for arcades, marking it as the first-ever 3D fighting game in history. Since then, the franchise has seen several forms of media, from sequels, side-games, collabs, anime, comics, and more.
But I’m not going to bore you with information that I’ve talked about in every blog I’ve done, so I figured that we get straight to the point: 2023 will mark the 30th anniversary of the franchise. So far, the only thing we have announced was Virtua Fighter 5 Ultimate Showdown coming to EVO Japan 2023 as the main game. This marks the first time since 2007 in which Virtua Fighter is part of the main lineup at EVO in general, and also the EVO Japan debut of VF5US.
So what do I expect to see in Virtua Fighter in 2023, considering that it is the 30th Anniversary of the franchise? I don’t expect much based on whatever SEGA has to celebrate for it, but if they decide to do it, here’s what I want to see:
New DLC for VF5US & Ports
When VF5US came out back in 2021, it was only for the PlayStation 4. There were several questions on why only the PS4 and not other platforms such as Xbox One/Series X|S, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam. According to Seiji Aoki (the current producer of the Virtua Fighter series), he mentioned that it was easy to reach newcomers by using the PlayStation Now and PSPlus subscriptions in order to gain interest in the series.
Due to the amount of downloads (which totalled up to at least 10 million downloads worldwide), SEGA made the right call on relying on the interest instead of what Capcom did to the Darkstalkers series in terms of funds. I think it’s time to bring VF5US to Xbox Series X/S, Nintendo Switch, and PC via Steam so that other players can play this game for multiple platforms. In addition to that, I want to see more DLC as well that will keeps us entertained overtime such as returning customization items and also more collab DLCs as well.
I remember back in 2013 when SEGA revealed the Virtua Fighter 20th Anniversary website, it had everything from various intros and gameplay from the series, special events, and much more. The one thing that stood out for me was the special interviews about the franchise from various well-known figures in Japanese gaming. One of my favorite interviews from the 20th Anniversary website were from Tekken’s Katsuhiro Harada, Koei Tecmo’s Yosuke Hayashi, Yoshinori Ono (then-Street Fighter producer), Yu Suzuki, and the local VF scene in Japan from various prefectures. You can read the translated articles on VFDC’s site, but you can also check out a blog I did about the same topic years ago.
For the 30th Anniversary, I want to see the special interviews back, but this time include the Western players in the Virtua Fighter community as well. I like to see members of the VF community such as Blitzball Champ, Tricky, KDQ|iambic, GriffyBones, and myself get involved in these interviews. In addition to that, I also want to see other figures such as Maximillian, Korimaru,
Virtua Fighter 6 Announcement
This one is more wishful thinking, but I want this to happen. It’s time for a new Virtua Fighter game.
Virtua Fighter 5 has been around since 2006, and it spawned over three updates with VF5R in 2008, VF5FS in 2010, and VF5US/VFes in 2021. I believe it’s been long overdue for a sequel at this point with Virtua Fighter 6. It is true that Seiji Aoki wants to make a new game, but the thing is that in order for that to happen, there has to be a new innovation in terms of gameplay that could take about 3-4 years.
Overall, I’m excited to see what 2023 brings for the franchise and the community. I can’t believe it’s about to be 30 years since the first 3D fighting game was introduced to the world.
Lastly, I made this announcement on stream last night, but I will be doing a five-part stream called Virtua Fighter 30th Anniversary Livestream Retrospective in which I take a look at the 30-year history of the franchise from VF1 to VF5US. It’s more of a remake of the FGHS 101 streams that I did back in 2019.
Also, have a Happy New Year and I’ll see you all in 2023. Expect a blog about Fighting Games & DLC to Look Forward to in 2023 later down the road.
Until then… Train Up, Fighters!