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In fighting games, a clone describes two characters with near exact movesets and special attacks. From the developer's perspective, a given character's model can be used as a base template from which to build another, and it is usually evident which one is the original and which is the clone.
Clones in fighting games technically started in the original Street Fighter with Ryu and Ken. In Street Fighter II, they were both clones again, and later down the entire series. Many characters were based on Ryu and Ken, and this produced the term "shoto clone", in reference to their alleged martial art of shotokan. As such, many fighting games have followed in their footsteps and made a "beginner" character and a clone of it (for example, Mortal Kombat's Scorpion, Sub-Zero, Reptile and other ninja clones). The most popular type of clone is a fellow student or brother of the original character. Other popular variants of clones include the female clone who is weaker, but faster; the 'master' clone who is better at most aspects than the original character and the joke character who is portrayed as a hilariously ineffective take on the original character. A less common version is the biomechanically engineered clone, designed to copy one or more characters.
Semi-clones are characters that share some moves of another, while still having some variation in terms of moveset or special attacks. "Semi-clone" status is usually more debatable than regular clones.
- Ryu and Ken: Exact movesets and character model, the only difference is a color swap. Ryu was the base character for Player 1 and Ken was for Player 2.
Street Fighter II seriesEdit
- Ryu, Ken and Akuma: Extremely similar movesets, though exactly how different differs from which version. In the original, both were practically indistinguishable, but over the many updated releases, Ken has gained a more powerful, wider arcing and multi-hitting Shoryuken and a multi-hitting Hurricane Kick that does not knockdown, while Ryu has a faster and more powerful Hadoken, a single hit Shoryuken and Hurricane Kick. In applicable versions, their Super Combos were different from each other. Akuma, introduced in later iterations as a 'master' clone, is a fusion of the two. Akuma lacks a Super Combo in his first appearance, but gains the Shun Goku Satsu in the later versions, Turbo Revival and Turbo HD Remix and more recently, Ultra Street Fighter II.
- E. Honda and Blanka: In early versions, the same character model, just with a different overface, very similar special attacks and playstyle.
- Sagat to Ryu and Ken: Shares the same projectile and uppercut based game. Differentiates himself by being able to launch his projectile high or low, lacks the Hurricane Kick but has the Tiger Knee that functions as a horizontal Shoryuken, and different normals.
- Ryu, Ken and Akuma: as usual.
- Khyber to Dhalsim: Very similar moveset, he might have been intended as a replacement for Dhalsim, who was not featured in the game.
- Sawada is similar to Fei-Long in appearance, but completely different in terms of moveset.
- F7 has all of Blade's, Arkane's and Khyber's moves, essentially making him a mash-up of all three troopers.
Street Fighter Alpha seriesEdit
- Ryu, Evil Ryu, Ken, Akuma and Shin Akuma: Extremely similar movesets, with minor differences. Ken retains the flaming Shoryuken, Ryu has one hitting, Akuma (and his Shin counterpart) can hit a few times with no flaming effects. Evil Ryu has Akuma's Shoryuken in Alpha 2, but Ryu's single hitting version in Alpha 3. Ryu's Hadoken's are faster, Ken's are weaker, Akuma's are somewhere in the middle, though he can launch them in the air. His Shin variant can launch two of the aforementioned aerial Hadokens. Akuma and Ryu have a different version of the Red or Shakunetsu Hadoken which Ken lacks. Ken's Hurricane Kick is multi-hitting, Ryu's hits once, Akuma and Evil Ryu's can hit thrice if placed correctly. Similar normals, different command moves. Akuma also has a flip kick, the Hyakkishu, with further cancelable inputs and is able to teleport, a trait he shares with Evil Ryu. All have Super Combos with some overlap.
- Guile & Charlie: Charlie was introduced in Street Fighter Alpha, and is essentially a clone of Guile. Charlie initially was based on Guile. However due to their storyline, Charlie is portrayed as being more efficient than Guile in their similar techniques.
- Sakura to Ryu, and Ken: The female "shoto". Her specials function differently but are clearly copied from moves used by Ryu and Ken, According to the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection, her attacks are changed for her due to size, emulation, and personality.
- Dan to Ryu, Ken and Akuma: Dan was designed to be a weaker, joke version of the others with ineffective special and super moves, the joke being reinforced by him having several taunts in later games
- Cammy, Juni and Juli: Result of the same genetic enhancing experiments, similar normals, specials and supers. Though there are some differences in their movesets.
- Maki to Guy: Female practitioner of Guy's Bushinryu Ninjutsu.
- Adon to Sagat: Sagat's former student shares many of his master's normal attacks and a few similar specials; Adon also distinguishes himself from Sagat by being a quicker, rushdown character with no projectile, while Sagat is more of a "zoning" character.
Street Fighter EX seriesEdit
- Ryu, Ken, Akuma and Evil Ryu: Same as before, though the shoto characters are now given a different Tatsumaki. Ken still maintains the original version of the Tatsumaki in EX2 and EX3.
- Allen and Kairi to the Shotoclones: Allen is similar to other shoto characters, except that some of his moves are different and he lacks a Tatsumaki-type special move. Kairi, on the other hand, was a straight Shoto in the first Street Fighter EX, though in later games he was developed to make him more unique, such as his QCF + P move no longer being a Hadoken but a stationary energy ball, among other things.
- C. Jack to Balrog: C. Jack's main moves are very similar to Balrog's, though unlike him he can also kick and use a baseball bat, plus he has other different moves.
- Hokuto and Bloody Hokuto: The latter has some different moves, but this is natural as she is an "alternative" version of Hokuto.
- Bison II and Shin-Bison to M. Bison: More powerful versions of him.
- Blair and Pullum to Cammy: Similar fighting style and the latter uses a move similar to the Spiral Arrow.
- Darun to Zangief: Same as above.
- Shadowgeist to Skullomania: Similar outfit and premise, but different moves.
- Cycloid Beta and Cycloid Gamma have moves from other characters.
- Ace's moveset can be customized by the player using other character's moves.
Street Fighter III seriesEdit
- Ryu, Ken and Akuma: As in Street Fighter II, although Ryu does gain the High-Blade Leg Kick as an extra special.
- Urien and Gill: Urien plays as a toned down, tournament legal version of the boss character Gill. Urien is slightly slower, weaker and his specials are charge moves compared to the quarter and half circle moves of his brother.
- Yun and Yang: Similar rushdown playstyle.
- Sean to Ryu, Ken and Akuma: Sean lacks a projectile attack as a special, has an exclusive takedown
move, and does a different version of the Dragon Punch. Sean can also be seen as the "joke" character of Street Fighter III, similar to Dan's status in the Alpha and IV series; however, his ineffectiveness as a playable character is tied more to his story (specifically his lack of experience) as opposed to being just ineffective or an actual joke character.
- Hugo to Zangief: Hugo shares a power-based wrestling style similar to his "predecessor", Zangief.
- Remy to Guile and Charlie: Aside from a jumping slide kick, Remy is a charge character with moves that resemble Charlie and Guile's Sonic Booms and Flash Kick. He also has extremely similar Super Arts compared to their Super and Ultra Combos.
- Necro to Dhalsim and Blanka: Aside from a spinning move for his Dragon Punch input, Necro shares the elasticity of Dhalsim and electricity of Blanka, putting them to similar use.
- Oro to the Shotoclones: Oro has an uppercut-projectile game like the Shotoclone, but many of his moves need to be charged. He also has an aerial stomp kick like Chun-Li.
- Twelve: The genetically engineered type that can copy the moves and appearance of his opponents for a limited time.
- Q to Balrog and Sagat: Most of Q's main attacks are punch based like Balrog, but not all of them requires charging and some of them are kick based, like Sagat. Two of Q's attacks are the same but "high" and "low", much like Sagat's main projectile and Balrog's four main dashing punches. Q however, lacks projectiles, anti-air, and hold based attacks, but has two grabs and a rapid-fire attack.
Street Fighter IV seriesEdit
- Ryu, Evil Ryu, Akuma, Oni and Ken: The standard deviations between Ryu, Ken and Akuma noted before still exist. Evil Ryu plays more like Akuma than Ryu compared to his previous appearances and has one extra move, the Dragon Claw Kick. Oni functions as a slower, more brute power-based version of Akuma with a dashing slash, overhead smash and air dash while losing the Hyakkishu and the ability to teleport along with a unique take on the standard shotoclone specials.
- Yun and Yang: Same as the Street Fighter III series.
- Decapre and Cammy: Decapre is a charge character, and her Spiral Arrow only hits midair, whereas Cammy's one only works on the ground. Scramble can be comparable to Hooligan Combination, as both are midair moves that have varied follow-ups.
- Gouken to "Shotoclones" and Oro: Gouken has a unique take on the "Shotokan". He has one-handed Hadokens that can be delayed and launched at different angles,much like Oro. His Hurricane Kick is vertical rather than horizontal, and he has a dash that can go through fireballs for his Dragon Punch motion. He also shares some normal and command attacks of his pupils. In addition to a "unique" Super Combo (i.e. the Forbidden Shoryuken, which Ryu would only perform upon missing a move such as the Metsu Shoryuken), his Ultra Combos are very much similar to the Super Arts of Ryu's Street Fighter III incarnation.
- Sakura and Dan to "Shotoclones": Same as the Street Fighter Alpha series.
- Seth: Composite character that has copied moves from a vast array of other characters.
- Adon and Sagat: Same as the Street Fighter Alpha series.
Street Fighter V series Edit
- Ryu, Ken and Akuma: Ken and Akuma's Heavy Tatsumaki now travel differently than Ryu's. Akuma's Hadoken also fizzles now unless in EX Move V-Trigger I. Their Hadoken becomes clearly distincts in the usage of V-Trigger, with Ryu gaining the Raiko Hadoken, Ken obtaining a Shakunetsu Hadoken, and Akuma gets a 2-hit Gohadoken that travels the whole screen.
- Urien and Gill: Both remain the same, with Gill's moveset being extensively toned done in terms of strength for tournament-legal reasons, but some of Gill's moves still have priorities over Urien's.
- Guile and Charlie: Charlie became a motion character and his kick special is now the Sonic Scythe, although he can still use his Somersault Shell on V-Trigger II. His moveset is now oriented to the legs moves, while Guile's are focused on the Sonic Boom moves and variants.
Semi Clone Edit
- Sakura to "Shotoclones": Mostly unchanged.
- Kage to Evil Ryu and other "Shotoclones": Virtually the same as Evil Ryu, but with slightly more "darker" moves like Oni and Akuma and a different origin.
- Zeku to Guy and Maki: Old Zeku have Bushin Jakura works similarly to Bushin Izuna Otoshi, when the throw and punch buttons are pressed, but also have a kick follow-up. Old Zeku also use moves akin to the Cypher's slash from Strider Hiryu. Young Zeku have the Bushin Shou, whereas Guy and Maki do not. He also doesn't have a "Extra Joy"-like move as Maki does, due to being only a background character from Final Fight.
- G to Gill, Urien, and Q: G's moves requires motion based-moves instead of charge commands like Q, but they look more "refined". Their Crouching High Kick also are similar. G's barrier attack is a fusion of Urien and Gill's projectiles and and the former's Aegis Reflector.
- Falke to Rolento: Falke relies more on shooting from her staff then hitting with it, and also do not use other weapons such as mines, knifes and hooks.
- Ed to Balrog: Ed isn't a charge based character like his mentor. He also isn't a punch-only character, having several kick moves and specials.
- Laura: Laura is the only grappler so far in the series with a projectile.
- Seth: Seth now has more flexability as he can copy a preset move form his opponent and use it. Seth's Annihilate Sword and it's V-Trigger I follow-up, Hell's Gate, work similarly to Makoto's Tsurugi and Fukiage.
- Rashid to Pullum Purna: Both fighters manipulate wind, but Rashid uses wind to a greater extent and also uses parkour.
- Abigail to Balrog and Hugo: Abigail only have 2 throw moves compared to Hugo, and his dash moves, Nitro Charge and Metro Crash, have Super Armor by default, while Balrog requires to spend a EX Bar to obtain such vantage.
- Lucia to Cody: Their Chain Combos work different one from another. Cody also have both of his V-Triggers focused on the usage of a weapon, whereas Lucia have only one of such.
- Since both are now in Smash Ultimate, since the game calls clones "Echo Fighters" Ryu and Ken are referred to as such in Ultimate while Clones in Street Fighter.