Street Fighter 6: Modern controls explained

Capcom has delivered a much cleaner and more user-friendly game with Street Fighter 6 already outperforming its predecessor. The game's Modern controls, which make their franchise debut, simplify button inputs to encourage players of all skill and experience levels to participate.

We explain exactly what the Modern Control system is, and weigh up the perks and penalties associated with it.

Modern controls explained

The Modern layout is best suited for beginners to Street Fighter or fighting games in general, as it leaves players with fewer buttons to be concerned with. Unlike the Classic controls, which incorporate six buttons, the Modern alternative uses only four.

The button layout is as follows;

  • Square/X - Light Attack
  • Cross/A - Medium Attack
  • Circle/B - Heavy Attack
  • Triangle/Y - Special Move

With the Classic's six-button layout, attacks are split into light, medium, and heavy punches and kicks. The Modern version takes this distinction away and chooses the most appropriate attack, whether punch or kick, according to the character being used and the most appropriate choice for the given situation.

The benefits of Modern controls

By simplifying the button layout, it will be easier for players to get a handle on the mechanics of Street Fighter 6 and understand the flow of the game better. Without needing to incorporate a controller's shoulder buttons to perform basic combos, the game will seem far less overwhelming.

Street Fighter characters Luke and Ryu about to engage in a fight.
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Credit: Street Fighter 6
The Modern Control option seeks to simplify the Street Fighter experience for newer players

Additionally, using the Modern layout makes the special attacks, which require some practice to master, far more accessible. With a simple directional input and the Special Attack button, players can unleash the franchise's most iconic and powerful attacking sequences.

One other benefit which comes with freeing up the controller's shoulder buttons is the auto combo function. Using the R2/R1 (PS/Xbox) button, players can execute a flurry of attacks that end in a devastating Overdrive special attack or Super Art.

The limitations of Modern controls

While Modern controls allow for easier combos and more accessible special attacks, it comes at the expense of players not having full authority over their character. This means that some attacks may not turn out as intended and it can, at times, feel like the player holding the controller isn't the one in charge of the fighter.

An in-game image from Street Fighter 6 of a player achieving a Perfect KO.
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Credit: Street Fighter 6
Will the Modern Control system be your ticket to a perfect KO?

Street Fighter 6's Classic controls have their complexities, however, they are worth the effort for players investing their time in the game. Having full command of a player's movements will open a far more versatile fighting experience with access to much longer, more devastating combos.

Are Modern controls for me?

The Modern system is easier to use than its classic counterpart, but it isn't necessarily the best option for players.

If you are new to Street Fighter or the fighting game genre in general, it is a great place to start your journey. However, given its limitations, the Classic controls are the best way to have full control over a character's movements and the best overall Street Fighter experience.

The Modern layout is a great starting point, however, if you are putting the time into the game then it is best treated only as that. If you are dedicated to being competitive in online mode or testing your skills at higher difficulty settings, it is best to continue practising until you master the Classic Controls.

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