Awful Box Art: Street Fighter series

How can one of gaming's most respected franchises keep getting such ugly-ass packaging?

So, how does a franchise responsible for stuff like this:

Repeatedly get saddled with horrendous box art like this:

With Street Fighter IV a mere seven days away, we feel it%26rsquo;s time to force an unwanted but oh-so-important trip down memory lane, finally confronting what has to be some of the worst box art for one of the best series around. Thankfully, there%26rsquo;s a great deal of redemption as the years wear on, with each new year of sequels bringing better and better covers. But before we can appreciate how far they%26rsquo;ve come, we must confront the dreadful works of years past.

Fighting Street
TurboGrafx-CD | 1988

It%26rsquo;s a well-known piece of nerd trivia that the original Street Fighter was released as Fighting Street on an obscure console adored by precisely six people. Fun fact: it%26rsquo;s not fun at all.

Noteworthy awfulness #1: This is supposed to be Ryu, and that hurts our feelings.

Noteworthy awfulness #2: WTF is the deal with this R? Why is it larger than every letter near it? This isn%26rsquo;t Fighting StReeT

Noteworthy awfulness #3: Did they alter Mount Rushmore just to have Abe%26rsquo;s eyes glaring down at the back of Ryu%26rsquo;s head? Those eyes seem to follow you wherever you go%26hellip;

Street Fighter II: The World Warrior
SNES | 1992

This cover means so much to so many. Yet even at the height of Street Fighter insanity it was plain to see how piss-poor the cover art really was. We%26rsquo;d all waited for months, wondering what could possibly encapsulate the SF experience so well they%26rsquo;d put it on the box to the very first home conversion. This%26hellip; this is not what we had in mind for what is still Capcom%26rsquo;s best selling game.

Noteworthy awfulness #1: Blanka looks entirely too happy about crashing into Chun Li%26rsquo;s crotch. Those teeth, those eyes, they suggest a sinister motive that mere words cannot capture.

Noteworthy awfulness #2: The main character, the poster boy of the biggest franchise of the day, is lying flat on his back about to burst into tears. Sadly, it%26rsquo;ll be years before Ryu gets a proper cover.

Noteworthy awfulness #3: The artist takes the %26ldquo;street fight%26rdquo; aspect a bit too literally, placing the scrap in an alley cluttered with trash cans and wooden crates. Guess what backdrop never appears in the game?

Street Fighter II Turbo
SNES | 1993

One year later, a chance for redemption. Will they depict Ryu and Ken in an epic struggle? Perhaps Guile delivering some sonic-boom comeuppance to Bison? Nope! You get a glistening E. Honda and a pouty Sagat duking it out in a bath house.

Noteworthy awfulness #1: Is this the face a warrior makes when he%26rsquo;s slapped in the chest? Frowning because mean ol%26rsquo; Honda hit your scar a little too hard, Saggy? Take it outside, baby.

Noteworthy awfulness #2: If the yawn-worthy duo of Honda and Sagat wasn%26rsquo;t lame enough for you, how about a barely there cameo from a mid-teleport Dhalsim? Maybe Honda%26rsquo;s slap was meant for Dhalsim, and that%26rsquo;s why Sagat%26rsquo;s so frumpy.

Next page %26ndash; Sega and Sony join the Street Fighter fray

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