Street Fighter 5 Introduces Matchmaking Changes in March Update
Street Fighter 5 continues to be a dominant force in the FGC, as the current 2D fighter from Capcom. However, there are some issues with how the online play works. That’s not a good look. Now online play is more important than ever, thanks to COVID-19 changing the world and how we see it. But the March update for Street Fighter 5 doesn’t entirely fix the netcode, but it’s a step in the right direction.
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The online servers are back up for Street Fighter 5. This matchmaking update will hopefully lead to better overall netcode. The focus of this update is the online side of things, pointing out a new bug and attempts to improve overall match quality. Rework how players match up, based on region, connection status, and response times.
The way we understand it works, is that connection status is divided up into new categories. The players with good connections will be in a tighter group, to hopefully keep their experience solid. Connection Status Five is the “gold standard,” upping the requirements for response times from 30ms to 20ms in ranked, and casual matches, when using the matchmaking system.
Of course, this will vary, thanks to Street Fighter 5 using peer-to-peer (p2p) connections. Now, whether or not this will adjust how often players see “one-sided rollback” remains to be seen. You can check your connection in the pre-match screen, and it will show if you are using P2P or relay connection, which will put you through a secondary source.
You can also see your region through the Capcom Fighters Network (CFN) World Map. This will show how the game factors your distance between you and your opponent once the match begins. This update also addresses a bug that messes with battle confirmations in online matches (but it will take some time to fix completely).
In pre-match, there’s an antenna display that shows the strength of your opponent’s connection. However, the display in the Battle Lounge shows a slower response time than the person’s actual time. What that means, is someone with a Status 5 connection will display as a Status 4-5 instead.
This does not affect gameplay. The update is scheduled for late April. They are aware of it and working on a fix though. I cannot tell you the number of times in Street Fighter 4 and 5, where someone’s signal/connection was nowhere near what displays. Or it would show a green connection. As soon as I accepted, it dropped down to red.
However, it’s unfortunate that the players themselves had to work on a netcode fix for Street Fighter 5 found on Reddit. The reason is that Street Fighter 5 is not a new game. It’s a travesty to still have netcode issues. What players are seeing is what I described as “one-sided rollback”.
So, one player might be lagging. The other one isn’t. If both players aren’t being rolled back, it’s unfair and ruins the overall experience. This is, hopefully, the next thing addressed. If regular players are fixing it and they aren’t, I’d love to know why that might be.
Thankfully, Capcom has posted something to help people change their region if what is on display isn’t where they are/where they want to be matched up at. They also link to the Benchmark program, where you can see just how solid your computer will run Street Fighter 5.
Every set-up and need is different though. They can’t put every solution up in the article, which you can find via this link. From restarting your PC, disconnecting other devices on your network, or switching from a wireless to wired network. But I can’t imagine purposely wanting to play a fighting game on a wireless system. I only did it on a console when there’s no other choice. But on a PC? No way, wired or not at all.
It’s a step in the right direction though. I can’t say what’s on the minds of Capcom developers. I certainly do not have programming experience. With that in mind, I can’t shoot on them and say they intentionally aren’t fixing what players are after. Perhaps it’s easier for someone on the outside to do it, perhaps it isn’t. That’s not for me to say. I am however glad to see that things seem to be changing for the Street Fighter 5 netcode. This ought to be a move for the better.