Sakura will be free to play in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition from January 16th to the 23rd

Trial period lets you try out the character, her costumes, and story before buying

Posted by Steven 'Dreamking23' Chavez • January 11, 2018 at 8:27 a.m. PST

By now, you've probably heard of a little game releasing next week called Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition. The massive update to Capcom's mainstay fighting title will add new game modes, a revamped UI, a slew of balance changes, and will officially kick of Season 3 with the release of Sakura.

The surprises keep coming with AE, as Capcom has announced this morning that Sakura will actually be free to play for the first week of the game's launch.

Capcom Unity shared a blog this morning with the details. If you're looking to try the game's newest contender out before slapping down your hard earned cash, you can do so from January 16th up until 10 a.m. PDT on January 23rd.

Those who take advantage of this free trial period will be able to access Sakura's story mode, her costumes, and all of the modes Arcade Edition has to offer.

It's worth noting that any EXP and Fight Money you earn with Sakura during this time will disappear on January 23rd, when the free period ends. If you purchase Sakura any time afterwards, however, all of the the EXP and Fight Money you earned will automatically be credited towards your account.

If you purchase Sakura or the Season 3 Character Pass during this free period, the EXP and Fight Money will not disappear.

Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #1 Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #2 Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #3 Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #4 Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #5

Sakura is the first of the Season 3 characters to get a redesign that reflects her current place in Arcade Edition. Still holding on to her passion for fighting, Sakura works several part-time jobs, including a gig at an arcade.

What hasn't changed is the fact that Sakura continues to look for Ryu, who she idolizes. She also spars with her rival Karin.

Everyone has to grow up sometime, and having graduated high school Sakura leaves the sailor outfit behind to take on a more mature look. She realizes now that it is time to think about her future instead of obsessing over something or someone.

Sakura made her Street Fighter debut in Street Fighter Alpha 2 as a schoolgirl who deeply admired Ryu. She emulated his fighting style in hopes of proving herself to him, however she didn't quite understand the "heart of battle" at that time.

Skipping school to search for Ryu and become his student, Ryu ends up dismissing her as a mere schoolgirl and refuses to train her. Sakura asks for a keepsake before Ryu leaves, and he gifts her a picture of himself.

Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #6

By the time Street Fighter Alpha 3 rolls around, Sakura is still in search of Ryu, this time with the aid of her sensei Dan. They meet Blanka during their travels, and upon finding Ryu discover that he is under the control of M. Bison who is trying to unleash the “Hado of Murderous Intent.”

As M. Bison is about to attack Sakura, Ryu comes to and destroys him temporarily. No longer seeing her as a nuisance, Ryu leaves again without fighting Sakura as he still believes he has training to do. Sakura promises that the next time they meet, she’ll be ten times stronger.

Sakura in Street Fighter 5 image #7

During the events of Street Fighter 4, Sakura continues her training with Dan. Sakura, Blanka, and Dan board a cruise ship and head to the second World Warrior tournament in hopes of finding Ryu there.

Encountering him once again, Sakura and Ryu spar. After the event, the two part ways and wish each other the best.


Click image for animated version

If you're looking to purchase Sakura in AE, you can do so individually or as part of the Season 3 Character Pass. The latter also includes access to Blanka, Falke, Cody, G, and Sagat, who will join the battle later this year.

Purchasing a character individually or through the Character Pass will give you access to their Battle Costume, as well as colors 3-10 for their default and Battle costumes.

Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition is set for release on January 16th.

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