Street Fighter V Akuma trailer breakdown

Akuma has officially been announced for Street Fighter V. But how will he play? What are his mechanics? How did he get that incredible beard? To find out, we dissect his reveal trailer frame by frame and break down everything shown.

Akuma starts the trailer off with a teleport, and longtime fans will be happy to know that this mechanic appears to remain unchanged. Shortly thereafter, we see his classic Divekick, which also seems to operate much as it has in past titles. But his next move appears to be an overhead chop done from a jump that launches at a directly vertical angle. It’s possible that it is a Demon Flip follow-up, and the move appears to not only hit overhead but combos into a medium punch followed by a Tatsu. If this is a comboable overhead, it will be one of his greatest combo tools.

Continuing the combo above, we see yet another medium punch into an EX Demon Flip. He follows this up with a slide, which auto-corrected after crossing up the opponent and continued the combo. Once again, this will be a fantastic mix-up tool if these properties remain unchanged. It operates very similar to the way that Cammy’s Hooligan Combo does, so use that as a reference.

Akuma’s normal throw was shown next, followed by his Red Fireball, which appears to hit twice. Neither appear to be changed much from their SFIV counterparts. His backthrow features him kicking the opponent backward, but it too seems fairly normal.

His Air-Fireball, one of the staples of Akuma’s gameplan, was shown next and it had some strange properties. It appeared smaller than its SFIV counterpart, and it affected his jumping momentum in strange ways. He fell down quickly and there was a lot of recovery time after launching the projectile. That being said, if done low enough, it still seems to combo. He followed the Fireball up with a standing strong into a Demon Flip throw, a cancel he was incapable of doing in SFIV.

It’s easy to miss the next-move, but it might be Akuma’s most important one. Akuma takes a stance, absorbs Ryu’s Shoryuken, and then steps forward with a powerful palm. It appears to act exactly like the focus attack from Street Fighter IV and Capcom has announced that this will be his V-Skill.

The next move is equally interesting. It features the same graphical flourish as his previous focus attack, but instead of hitting forward, it hit with a high kick upward. He appears to be able to combo off both focus attacks, as the trailer showed him following up the anti-air with a Demon Palm.

His V-Reversal was shown next, and it’s about what you would expect. He kicks the opponent backward, knocking them to the ground. It does not appear as if this is comboable at all.

Akuma goes into V-Trigger next. It appears to be an “install” style of V-Trigger, which powers up Akuma’s moves. We see Akuma’s standard Fireball not only gets much bigger, but also has two hits on it instead of one, allowing him to win Fireball wars. It powers up his air Fireballs as well, allowing him to fire two instead of one, much as he did in “Shin Akuma” variants from past games.

A fairly standard combo was shown next, that of low forward into Tatsu into uppercut. His EX Shoryuken was shown, which now does two repetitions of uppercuts, Shoryureppa style. The same combo was then shown again, except it ended with a sweep instead of an uppercut.

The next combo shown opened with his standing hard kick, which now does one hit and appears to be a crush counter. This gives him enough time to follow up with a standing hard punch. After that he cancels with a V-Trigger activation, and his standing hard kick appears to have changed into his two hit SFIV variety. It appears as if his standing hard kick has been changed into a target combo, allowing the second hit to be optional.

The combo continues into what appears to be his V-Skill, showing that it can be linked and used without the focus attack portion. After that, Akuma uses his V-Trigger Shoryuken, which appears to be some sort of hit-grab. He launches the opponent into the air, turns around, and slams them down into the ground, which appears to do more damage. However, this has fewer combo opportunities.

His EX Demon Flip was shown again with an interesting property this time. His whole body has a hit-box on the way up. This allows him to combo an airborne opponent with the rising part of the Demon Flip before the followup, which in this case would be a divekick. It’s unclear if that’s a property of the EX version of the move or of his V-Trigger.

Speaking of new properties, his Shoryuken was shown again, canceled into an EX air Fireball. In addition, his EX air Fireball now appears to put the opponent into a juggle state, allowing for further followups.

His final combo showed what appeared to be a canceled hard kick into a V-Skill launcher into EX Tatsu. If his V-Skill operates the way Street Fighter IV’s focus attack did, then he might be able to spend meter in order to use it mid-move.

The final two moves showcased were both supers. The first was the Kongou Kokuretsu Zan, his ground pound secret super from Street Fighter III: Third Strike. This appears to be his standard super art. The next was, of course, the Raging Demon, which appears to actually give us a look at what’s happening behind the darkness this time around. The Raging Demon will require full super bar and activated V-Trigger.

The final bits of the trailer showed five silhouettes of Street Fighter V’s upcoming season two characters. The first looks like Helen, the secret Illuminati agent from Street Fighter V’s story mode. The second looks like it’s wearing a beret, which points toward Rolento. The third is rather large and little detail can be seen. However, the face has an outline that looks similar to Sagat’s, so that’s the best guess we have for now. The last two are hard to peg, but the one with the wild hair may be Goutetsu, Akuma and Gouken’s master.

Did you notice anything in the Akuma reveal trailer that we didn’t? Are you planning to main him in Street Fighter V’s second season? Let us know in the comments.

Update: Capcom has confirmed that the five silhouetted characters will be "completely new," as in never featured in Street Fighter before. Signs point toward Helen, Ed, Goutetsu, and Azam at the very least.