Street Fighter 5 hit 1.6 million in sales, Capcom continues to push it for eSports - title keeps chugging along despite hate

Posted by Jonathan 'Catalyst' Grey • May 22, 2017 at 12:30 p.m. PDT

Mention the words 'Street Fighter 5' to almost anyone in the fighting game community, and you're about to get an earful.


Whether you love or hate the game, it's hard to run across anyone in the FGC who doesn't have a strong opinion about the release.

Personal feelings aside, what really matters with a title like this is the traction it's seeing from gamers, how often it's being played in the community, and if it's main developer continues to improve and support the title.

And against all odds, Street Fighter 5 keeps checking these boxes, and today I wanted to show how it's doing it.
This game has sold 1.6 million copies!?!?

Street Fighter 5 has sold an additional 200,000 copies since its initial sales report.

While this may not seem like that big of deal, this increase has happened over a one year span — while the game had seen a truckload of problems, and negative feedback.

The fact that SF5 continues to pick up momentum, against all odds, is pretty astonishing.

This is a product people want to play and experience, not just existing players, but a new audience who decided to purchase the game.

Quite a bit of the user-feedback you hear about the game is negative, with fans and foes alike prepared to tell you everything wrong with the title.

Despite this, it continues to sell.
Capcom still pushing it heavily for eSports

Capcom continues to emphasize how large Street Fighter 5 is to their eSports plans.

In a recent investor relations document, they said that a specific consumer strategy is to reap stable contributions from major brands, citing SF5.

"Explore leading-edge markets, such as eSports with Street Fighter 5," Capcom noted as a bullet point to their investors.

"We expect the eSports market to grow significantly throughout the world, driven by initiatives in the more advanced eSports markets of North America and Europe," wrote Capcom.

"Spearheaded by our US subsidiary, we intend to strengthen promotions globally through activities that include expanding our user base via streaming video," they noted.

It's important to state this isn't just for their existing eSports approach, this is part of their business expansion plans — in terms of trying to grow it even further.
Strong attendance at tournaments, good viewership

Street Fighter 5 is frequently among the games with the most number of attendees at tournaments, and the Pro Tour has seen pretty nice viewer numbers for streams.

Along with Smash Melee and Smash 4, it's a common occurrence to see that Street Fighter 5's stream and attendance numbers are very high.

The last three Capcom Pro Tour premier events in the U.S. had entrant numbers in the 250-450 range for SF5 alone.

For those same three premiere events, NorCal Regionals, DreamHack Austin and Final Round, SF5's collective stream numbers hit peaks of 40,000 to 60,000 viewers.
So how the heck is Street Fighter 5 doing this?

I wish I had concrete answers to this question.

The bottom line is this game continues to defy a good portion of what's said about it publicly.

We've definitely ran a number of stories, and opinions from top players, talking about the game's massive flaws.

And yet — I wouldn't say the game is flourishing — but it continues to defy the odds, and perform at a good clip.

Capcom states they're working on improving the game, and it will be interesting to see how the new CFN infrastructure helps out.

But despite all of this, Street Fighter 5 continues to be a pretty decent success story, even as it exists currently.

Looking over the data, I guess no matter what people say publicly, there's a large, dedicated and passionate fan base who love this game despite is problems.
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