Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike (ストリートファイターⅢ サードストライク Sutorīto Faitā Ⅲ Sādo Sutoraiku?) is the third installment of the Street Fighter III series, released in 1999. A sequel to Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact, it continues the series' use of the parry system, command grabs, and overhead attacks. At Comic Con 2010, a new downloadable online version entitled Street Fighter III: Third Strike Online Edition was announced. It was released on the PlayStation Network and Xbox Live Arcade in August 2011.
One of the new gameplay mechanics introduced in 3rd Strike is the Guard Parry, also known as the "Red Parry", that allows players to parry during guard stun if the timing is correct. Also introduced are player evaluations after match, where the winner of a two-person match is given letter grades in Offense, Defense, Tech, and Extra. A player in Arcade mode will always be evaluated, even in case of a loss; the grades range from E (lowest) to MSF, or Master Street Fighter (highest). Also re-introduced was the fan-favorite 'Destroy the Car' bonus stage.
3rd Strike differs from the previous installments of this series (known for having none of the original characters other than Ryu, Ken, and Akuma) by re-introducing series regular Chun-Li as a new addition. In addition to Chun-Li and the fighters already in 2nd Impact, four other new characters are introduced; Q, Remy, Twelve, and Makoto.
Returning 2nd Impact characters
|Akuma (Gouki in Japan)||Appears in 2nd Impact as a secret character and has a non-playable "Shin Akuma" version which can be selected in the Dreamcast version of the game in 2nd Impact. He is a regular character in 3rd Strike while his "Shin" version was removed, though in the arcade game this version is present as a near-complete character, including a recolored stage.
|Alex||The lead character of the Street Fighter III games. He fights with close-range wrestling and quick rushing attacks. Previously, he was out to avenge the defeat of his friend Tom at the hands of Gill. Having successfully done so, now he's seeking out Ryu.
|Dudley||A dandy British boxer who, having been knighted since making a comeback and winning the championship title, enters the tournament to train for a contest that will be held in the presence of the Royal Family.
|Elena||An African princess who uses the fighting style of capoeira. She seeks to make new friends.
A professional wrestler who wants to find a strong tag team partner. He is often accompanied by his manager, Poison. Based on the Andore enemy character from Final Fight, also a direct nod to late professional wrestler André the Giant. Hugo was planned to be in the first game, as evidenced by his mobile character with unfinished sprites, and the presence of his stage in New Generation.
An aspiring ninja whose fight in the tournament is part of her final exam. She is very quick and agile.
|Ken Masters||Knowing that Ryu has entered the tournament, Ken enters to test his strength against his old friend. The emergence of the Secret Society has also drawn curiosity from him too.
|Necro||A Russian man who was kidnapped and experimented on in the Illuminati's "G-Project". In 2nd Impact, he finds a companion named Effie who follows him and mimicks his actions. Together they seek asylum from the Secret Society and his successor Twelve.
|Oro||A hermit who seeks a fighter worthy to inherit his fighting style. He binds one arm while fighting, to keep him from prematurely ending fights and overwhelming his opponent, except when performing specific super arts.
|Ryu||As usual, Ryu enters the tournament to improve his skills and find worthy opponents.
|Sean Matsuda||A young Brazilian fighter who is being trained by Ken, Sean wants to improve his skills and prove his ability.
|Urien||Gill's younger, bitter brother who wants to forcibly take the Illuminati from him and rule over the secret society solely. He can manipulate electricity and metal.
|Yang Lee||Yang is a Kung Fu expert from Hong Kong, and the twin brother of Yun. In New Generation, Yang is selectable only as a "palette swap" of his brother Yun. In 2nd Impact and 3rd Strike, Yang is a separate character, with his own unique set of Special Moves and Super Arts.
|Yun Lee||A cocky fighter who, along with Yang, protects his hometown in Hong Kong. He's a happy-go-lucky person who likes to do things his own way.
|Gill||The leader of the secret organization known as the Illuminati, he wants to restore balance to the world. He can manipulate fire and ice. He is the final opponent for all the characters in New Generation and 3rd Strike, and for most of the characters in 2nd Impact. He is a playable character only in the console versions of the games. Using sometimes contradicting means, Gill wants to save the world from an upcoming cataclysmic event and chooses fighters that will be included in his promised land.
|Chun-Li||Chun-Li once again enters a World Fighting Tournament after the young orphan in her care was kidnapped under mysterious circumstances.
|Makoto||A young Japanese girl, trained in Rindoukan karate. Since her father's death, Makoto's dojo has been floundering, so she finds Ryu and challenges him to restore her dojo to a flourishing state. Her fighting style is suggestive of a more traditional style of karate.
|Q||A mysterious figure, with a featureless facemask and a concealing overcoat. While he can be chosen as a playable character, he is also a hidden computer-controlled opponent in the single-player mode. His design is based on K, the main character of the tokusatsu show, Robot Detective K.
|Remy||A long-haired French fighter wearing a leather jacket emblazoned with an omega. He bears a grudge against all fighters since his father disappeared and his sister died. His special moves are similar to those used by preceding Street Fighter characters Guile and Charlie as they are mostly charge based specials.
|Twelve||One of the first successful soldiers of the Illuminati's "G-Project" experiment, it can shape its body into weapons. Twelve is ordered to hunt down and kill its prototype, Necro, as it's first mission.
3rd Strike tells the story of what happened after the events of Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact and the conclusion of the Third World Warrior Tournament (fourth, retroactively). Among the battles that occured during this time:
- Alex vs. Ryu - Ryu encounters and defeats Alex comprehensively, leading Alex to become obsessed with fighting Ryu again and becoming a better fighter.
- Ryu vs. Ken - The two friends face off once more and Ryu again narrowly defeats Ken, lauding him as his worthiest opponent.
- Chun-Li vs. Urien - Chun-Li demands the return of a kidnapped child and Urien agrees to comply if Chun-Li can provide an entertaining match. The victor is unknown, although it is implied Chun-Li won, as the child is returned.
- Necro vs. Twelve - Upon learning the Necro and his female companion, Effie, survived the events of 2nd Impact, Necro's successor, Twelve, is ordered by either Gill or Urien to hunt down and exterminate them. While the official outcome of this battle is unknown, Necro's ending reveals that he and Effie likely survived the encounter. Twelve, in the meantime, is returned to Dr. Woo's lab to recuperate, and it is hinted that he has gained sentience, as his hollow eyes gain red irises.
- Akuma vs. Oro - Both have fought each other after an encounter, but declared to cease combat as there was no clear winner and both believed that a mutual death would occur had they continued.
A PlayStation 2 version of 3rd Strike was released in 2004, with all the features from the Dreamcast, including a choice between arcade and Dreamcast version's respective soundtracks. It was released in Japan as a stand-alone game, with a limited edition package containing an All About Street Fighter history book, a 500-piece jigsaw puzzle and a strategy DVD. The PS2 version was released in North America as part of the Street Fighter Anniversary Collection, a two-in-one bundle that also includes Hyper Street Fighter II. The PS2 version was not released in the PAL region. The PS2 version was re-released in Japan on September 18, 2008 in a two in one bundle with Capcom vs. SNK 2.
An Xbox version of the Street Fighter Anniversary Collection was also released during the year in all three regions. The Xbox version of 3rd Strike includes all the features from the PS2 version, as well as an online Versus Mode.
Street Fighter III: Third Strike Online Edition
An "Online Edition" of the game was released in 2011 by Capcom and Iron Galaxy Studios (who would later jointly develop and release Marvel vs. Capcom Origins) as download on the PSN store (August 23) and the Xbox Live Market (August 24). All the moves, bugs, glitches, and quirks of the original game remain so as to leave the experience unaltered. The online edition features enhanced visual settings including various HD filters (although the sprites themselves have not been reworked), YouTube Sharing, GGPO-built online play and was ported by Iron Galaxy.
The game also features a new Trials mode, which is broken up into a number of different sections, each focusing on a different aspect of gameplay (parrying, expert parrying and handicap). Other trials are similar to those from the Street Fighter IV games.
There's also a separate group of challenges which are displayed either on the left or right on the screen depending on which number the player are; to see these challenges on screen the player must be signed in. The challenges are similar to achievements, but they award the player with "Vault Points" (or "VP"), which they can spend on unlocking new content (i.e. art, music etc.). The game also supports DLC, which have come in the form of color packs, videos of pro matches and alternate music from New Generation and 2nd Impact.
- The "3rd" in the subtitle "3rd Strike" refers to the original version of this game while "Third" refers to the "Online Edition".
- The secondary sub-title "Fight for the Future" is most likely in reference to the return of Chun-Li, her rescue of her adopted daughter Li-Fen, and her newfound lifelong mission to teach and pass down her art to the "future" generation of street fighters.
- Despite this game being released as the last of its series, it is the only Street Fighter III game to not support widescreen in any form as it was not properly allocated for (the routine to run in widescreen mode is very much present but asset alignments were not), New Generation had a mostly complete beta widescreen mode that can be accessed with cheats, while Second Impact has a native widescreen mode that is even included in the 30th Anniversary Collection.
- The first few notes of Yun and Yang's theme in this game are a reference to the James Bond theme composed by Monty Norman.
- To view all official character artwork, see: Official Art.