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From balancing turtles to multiple Critical Arts, here's what we might see from Oro in Street Fighter 5

Posted by John 'Velociraptor' Guerrero • April 2, 2021 at 7:19 p.m. PDT • Comments: 6

Street Fighter 5 fans are excitedly looking forward to next Tuesday's Spring Update stream during which Capcom has promised new information on Season 5, Rose, Oro, and more. While the Italian fortune teller is surely the main focus since she's due to release next, we thought a speculative look at what we'll likely be seeing for Oro is in order.

It's been a long time since we've seen the 140 year old Japanese hermit, and we've really only his Street Fighter 3 appearances to judge his potential fighting style by. That said, Oro's history paired with SF5's development around him can surely give us some insight on what's coming down the pike.

It's apparent that Capcom is taking some risks and exploring new territory as they play with SF5's formula here in its latter chapters as many of the DLC characters from seasons 4 and 5 have fresh and unique mechanics in their designs.

Gill, for example, has an entirely unique Retribution mechanic that replaces Crush Counters. Seth's ability to steal attacks via his install V-Skill, Rose having buff and de-buff tarot cards, and Dan's one-bar V-Trigger are all intriguing examples that remind us to be open to evolution.

This theme will continue with Akira, who is noted to have a special mechanic of her own, as well as with Oro, who must balance a turtle in one of his hands while he fights. We don't know much about what this turtle balancing act will entail, and while it sounds more like a handicap than a help, we're sure it'll work more to make Oro fun and distinctive as opposed to hindering him.

In fact, there's another, arguably primary, reason why developers chose to do this: Oro's asymmetrical nature. The old hermit famously fights with one hand tied behind his back because he's so incredibly powerful that it wouldn't otherwise be fair, which presents some consistency issues when it comes to a two-dimensional fighting game plane.

This kind of issue came up previously with Sagat's eye patch magically switching eyes as his character sprite changed directions in early Street Fighter titles, but was rectified in recent times as achieving a small visual alteration like this is no longer much of a technical challenge for developers. Indeed, the red and blue colored Gill stood as something of a symbolic overcoming of said challenge way back in the days of Street Fighter 3.

Restricting a character's access to specific limbs, however, is a whole other story, and Capcom designed Oro's arm in SF3 in a similar manner to Sagat's old eye patch as he'd always have his free arm facing forward and his bandaged one behind him regardless of the direction he faced.

Such a visual inconsistency would probably come across as massively distracting and wouldn't fly by today's standards, but perhaps a quick transition of a turtle between hands would check the right boxes here.

This way Oro could theoretically maintain the same exact attack animations regardless of the direction he's facing, but wouldn't have to rely on fans ignoring the fact that his accessories magically flip flop. If this is indeed how Capcom is planning to use the turtle, it's quite a brilliant solution to multiple problems.

The one sighting we've got of Oro in SF5 thus far is a brief animation of him doing his Tengu Stone technique. This ability has traditionally been all about giving Oro the potential to extend combos with juggles – a key part of his game plan.

The hermit has always been more about peculiar movements and strategic positioning than the more traditional Street Fighter approaches. His theme of self-limitation extends into his arsenal of moves as it's relatively limited compared to others, but he often gains access to stronger versions of Super attacks through the use of meter resources... you can think of this as "EX Supers."

Going back to the Tengu Stone as an example, Oro could summon 3 objects normally when activating this Super, but could up it to five objects by using two punch inputs instead of just one. Each of his Supers in SF3 had an "unsealed" version like this, which would be more powerful and often see him use both of his hands while executing them.

We wouldn't be surprised to see developers explore this a bit more in SF5 by giving Oro some unique super meter properties. He very well may have different versions of his Critical Art, or perhaps will be able to activate a less powerful version of it before filling all bars entirely.

The character also seems a perfect fit for the V-System as his design focuses on upgrading existing abilities as opposed to adding new ones. One of Oro's V-Triggers will almost certainly be tied to his Niou Riki command grab, which becomes the enhanced Kishin Riki version at the cost of extra resources.

One of Oro's main punch attacks becomes a command grab while Kishin Riki is active (sounds like a V-Trigger state to us) and he's able to slam foes from both on the ground and while in the air. Oro has an even more powerful version of this, the Kishin Tsui, that's executed in SF3 by performing two quarter-circle forward motions and pressing two punch buttons while his gauge is completely full.

Perhaps his Niou Riki will be a V-Skill, the Kishin Riki will be a V-Trigger, and the Kishin Tsui will be a Trigger/Super mega attack similar to Akuma's Raging Demon?

Oro very well may play out to be a character for those who haven't found their perfect stride in SF5 yet. He exists as something of an odd hybrid of character archetypes, and is most certainly for the more creative types of players who tend more to tread off the beaten path.

Command grabs, projectiles, the ability to summon objects, and a double jump are not often abilities you see mixed together, and it's hard to see how such a hodgepodge kind of arsenal will come together in SF5's particular atmosphere. We do suspect that Oro's relative position on the tier list will be somewhat tied to his ability to play a strong neutral game.

Being able to achieve big damage from extended juggles will be fairly important, because if the onus is on Oro to score many openings, he'll likely be at an overall disadvantage.

We'll be watching with much excitement to see what Capcom shows us next Tuesday, April 6 at 3 p.m. PDT. We'll have the live stream up here on EventHubs, so be sure to stop by and see what the developers reveal with regards to Oro, Rose, and whatever other Season 5 content they have waiting.

In the meantime, we'd love to hear your theories and suppositions about Oro in SF5 in the comments below.

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