Sega is rebooting Virtua Fighter with an esports focus... but only in Japan for now

The fan-favorite fighting franchise Virtua Fighter is finally getting a long-awaited return, and Sega is focused on setting up competition for its new game. Hopefully we'll see it come west.

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Virtua Fighter throughout it’s illustrious history has long been considered a prime gem of fighting game history. It was one of (if not the) first 3D fighting games ever produced, and its most recent version was considered by many to be the peak of balance, playability, and fun. Many have pined for a return of Sega’s star fighting franchise, and now it appears it’s finally happening. Sega announced a new “Virtua Fighter x Esports project” that will bring back the series with a new game and focus on competition.

Sega announced the Virtua Fighter x Esports project during its 60th anniversary reveals during Tokyo Game Show Online 2020. During a part of the presentation, Sega revealed that it would be rebooting Virtua Fighter with what could likely be a new game, and a definite focus on fostering competition for it. Currently, the project seems to be confined to a establishing a Japanese scene. There were no plans for a Western release or expansion announced at this time.

The reboot of Virtua Fighter is nonetheless major news. We haven’t seen a new mainline Virtua Fighter game since the launch of Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown on arcades in 2010 and on home console in 2012. Even then, the game was praised all around the scene for a deceptive simplicity and astonishing depth. Even so, it’s been relegated to little more than cameos in games like Yakuza and Project X Zone since. The release of an actual new Virtua Fighter game is cause for celebration, and it will be interesting to see what form the “esports” end of this project takes, given today’s myriad of fighting game world tours such as the Tekken World Tour and Arc System Works’ ArcREVO.

What do you want to see out of the “Virtua Fighter x esports project?” Stay tuned as we await further details and updates on the game, such as the possibility of a western release.

News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. When he's not handing out beatdowns in the latest fighting games, exploring video game history, or playing through RPGs with his partner, he's searching for new food and drinks in the constant pursuit of good times with good people inside and outside the South Texas area. You can also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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