Street Fighter Week: The evolution of Ken and Ryu

Table of Contents
Street Fighter | Street Fighter II | Alpha series | Street Fighter III | EX series | SF: The Movie and Gem Fighter | Marvel vs. Capcom series | SNK vs. Capcom series | Misc. games | Sprite comparison | SSFIITHDR and Street Fighter IV | Comics, films, and more 

X-Men vs. Street Fighter - 1996

The trend of matching Capcom characters against those of other publishers would not be short lived. In this case, Ken and Ryu battle the X-Men heroes in their Alpha forms. While the actual character sprites aren't new, the visual grandness of their special moves have been upped to match the mutants' powers.

Above: A very large fireball

While the stories in crossover games are not part of the official Street Fighter canon, they generally stay true to the characters. Ryu is thanked by Cyclops before wandering away, you guessed it, in search of another challenge. Ken can be found with his son playing none other than X-men vs. Street Fighter.

Trivia: X-Men vs. Street Fighter is the first game to include Street Fighter characters alongside "tag-team" gameplay. The PlayStation port, however, does not feature tag-team gameplay due to memory limitations. Instead, the alternate character only appears during special attacks. The Saturn version (only released in Japan), however, is a true arcade port.

Marvel vs. Capcom: Clash of Super Heroes - 1998

While the art style of the character portraits is still pretty "Alpha-ish," the characters are in their post-Alpha garb. Marvel vs. Capcom is one of the only games in which Ryu appears without Ken along side him as a playable character. But wait - down, back, medium punch and...

Above: It's Ken! Uh, kind of...

Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes - 2000

Ken returns as a playable character in Marvel vs. Capcom 2, though he is only available after unlocking. The characters are back to their pre-SF II look (Ryu with a white headband). The character art is oddly boyish - are these prepubescent versions of Ken and Ryu?


  • Ktown - January 23, 2011 4:09 p.m.

    This is very entertaining but most of this info is false. Ken isn't an actor, but his father is the worlds third richest man and Ken is an American martial arts champion. Second Ryu finished sagat with the Hadouken after the shoryuken and not the dark hadou. The shoryuken belongs goukens master not ryu. Third, ken fights ryu at the end because Ken has defeated every opponent he has come across, except ryu.
  • beoftw - March 2, 2009 2:23 a.m.

    lol street fighter 2: the animated movie shold have gotten alot more praise than it did. imo i thought it was alot better than the otheres.
  • Arukami - February 27, 2009 2:07 p.m.

    All beatiful recalls....aboveall th first SF! and SFII with that big pic with Vega with his hands open...i'll Kill you!!!!!! U understand me!!! I'll kill you Vega! XDDD! Great article!
  • Auron00 - February 21, 2009 9:31 a.m.

    Not that anyone will really care too much, but, just to keep this retrospective a bit more clear, Ken Masters was never an actor, he is a world famous martial arts tournament champion in america (multiple times over even) and his father is the third richest man in the world (in the SF world anyway).
  • jackrabbitslims - March 15, 2009 12:42 p.m.

    "and apparently a variety of nuts in his cheek to consume later" LMAO. Great article, I love catching up on the history of street fighter.
  • WiqidBritt - February 24, 2009 3:50 a.m.

    what? no mention of Violent Ken in SVC Chaos?
  • Sonneilon - February 21, 2009 9:18 p.m.

    Reading thru all these, feels like I should get a degree with all this SF knowledge now!
  • Bigpapa360 - February 21, 2009 7:27 a.m.

    Second. Man I love seeing how all these games get their start.
  • Grundler24 - February 16, 2009 4:29 p.m.

    First??? The arcade version of this is amazing, i've gotten the chance to play it at an arcade in china town and my friends grandpa owns it so i got free tokens and played it forever. SF never seems to end its reign of ass kicking.

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