Street Fighter Alpha 3

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Street Fighter Alpha 3
Street Fighter Alpha 3 flyer.png
Arcade flyer
Crawfish Interactive (GBA)
PlayStation and Dreamcast
Composer(s)Takayuki Iwai
Yuki Iwai
Isao Abe
Hideki Okugawa
Tetsuya Shibata
SeriesStreet Fighter
Platform(s)Arcade, Dreamcast, Game Boy Advance, PlayStation, PlayStation Portable, Sega Saturn (Japan only)
Mode(s)Up to 2 players simultaneously
Arcade systemCPS-2
Sega NAOMI (Zero 3 Upper)
DisplayRaster, 384 x 224 pixels (Horizontal),
4096 colors on screen,
16,777,216-color palette[1]

Street Fighter Alpha 3[a] is a 2D competitive fighting game originally released by Capcom for the arcades in 1998. It is the third and final installment in the Street Fighter Alpha sub-series, which serves as a prequel to Street Fighter II, and ran on the same CP System II hardware as previous Alpha games. The game was produced after the Street Fighter III sub-series has started, being released after 2nd Impact, but before 3rd Strike. Alpha 3 further expanded the playable fighter roster from Street Fighter Alpha 2 and added new features such as selectable fighting styles called "isms".

Alpha 3 has also been released on a variety of home platforms starting with the PlayStation port in 1998, which added an exclusive World Tour mode and brought back even more characters, with further versions on the Sega Saturn, Dreamcast, Game Boy Advance and PlayStation Portable. The game was also included in the Street Fighter Alpha Anthology, as well as the Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection.


Akuma delivers a hurricane kick to Rainbow Mika, on her stage Sardine Beach. Both fighters are using the A-Ism style

Street Fighter Alpha 3 discards the "Manual" and "Auto" modes from the previous Alpha games and instead offers three different playing styles known as "isms" for players to choose from. The standard playing style, A-ism (or Z-ism in Japan), is based on the previous Alpha games, in which the player has a three-level Super Combo gauge with access to several Super Combo moves. X-ism is a simple style based on Super Street Fighter II Turbo (the term "X-ism" being a reference to that game's Japanese title, Super Street Fighter II X), in which the player has a single-level Super Combo gauge and access to a single but powerful Super Combo move. The third style, V-ism (or "variable" style), is a unique style that allows the player to perform custom combos similar to the ones in Street Fighter Alpha 2, but cannot use Super Combos. In X-ism, players cannot air-block nor perform Alpha Counters, and can only use 1 Super Combo move in its powerful Level 3 version. To activate V-ism's Super Combo, players have to press both kick and punch of the same strength. X-ism has the highest attack power but least defence, A-ism has more attack power than V-ism and a similar level of defence. All three modes have variations of movesets for each character, adding considerable depth to the gameplay. In addition, there are hidden modes that add handicaps to the player as well as benefits (for example, Classic Mode while you cannot use super combos you cannot be knocked in the air and juggled).

Alpha 3 also introduces a "Guard Power Gauge" which depletes each time the player blocks – if the gauge is completely depleted, then the player will remain vulnerable to an attack. When broken the bar shrinks and is refilled to its new maximum, it can be shrunk a number of times. Worth noting, while in X-Ism the character has the least defence of all modes it also has the largest guard bar, vice versa for V-ism with A-Zism being in the middle. Also the guard bar varies between characters, Zangief e.g. has a very large guard bar. The guard bar does not exist in Dramatic Battle matches so no guard crushing is possible there.

The I-ism style is customizable when selecting which character and super gauge to be used, which is only exclusive to Dreamcast version's Saikyo Dojo Mode, or PSP version's MAX update on World Tour or/and Entry Modes.

The controls for several actions have been modified from the previous Alpha games. For example, the level of a Super Combo move in A-ism is now determined by the strength of the attack button pressed (i.e. Medium Punch or Kick for a Lv. 2 Super Combo), rather than the number of buttons pushed; and throwing is now done by pressing two punch or kick buttons simultaneously.


The game brings back all eighteen of the characters that appeared in Street Fighter Alpha 2. As with the previous Alpha titles, several characters were added to the game: Cammy, who was previously featured in the console-exclusive Street Fighter Alpha 2 Gold, E. Honda, Blanka, Balrog, and Vega. New characters introduced in Alpha 3 include R. Mika, a Japanese female wrestler who idolizes Zangief; Karin, Sakura's rival who was first introduced in the Street Fighter manga Sakura Ganbaru! by Masahiko Nakahira; Cody from Final Fight, who has since become an escaped convict; and Juli and Juni, two of Shadaloo's "Dolls" who serve as Bison's assassins and guards.

The PlayStation version added the remaining characters introduced in Super Street Fighter II: Dee Jay, Fei Long, and T. Hawk, along with Guile from Street Fighter II, Evil Ryu and Shin Akuma from Street Fighter Alpha 2, the latter three being unlockable. The Sega Saturn and Dreamcast versions move Guile and Evil Ryu to the default.

The Game Boy Advance port contains all of the characters from previous versions, as well as three additional characters: Yun from Street Fighter III, Maki from Final Fight 2, and Eagle from the original Street Fighter, all three based on their incarnations from Capcom vs. SNK 2: Mark of the Millennium 2001. The PlayStation Portable version, Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX, also adds Ingrid from Capcom Fighting Evolution, to bring the total character count to 38 characters.

Character Street Fighter Alpha 3
Street Fighter Alpha 3 (PS1, DC, Sega Saturn)

Street Fighter Zero 3 Upper (Arcade)

Street Fighter Alpha 3 Upper
Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX
Thailand Adon Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Akuma Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Balrog Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United Kingdom Birdie Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Brazil Blanka Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United Kingdom Cammy Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Charlie Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
China Chun-Li Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Cody Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
India Dhalsim Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Hong Kong Dan Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Jamaica Dee Jay No Yes Yes Yes 3
Japan E. Honda Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United Kingdom Eagle No No Yes Yes 2
Japan Evil Ryu No Yes Yes Yes 3
Hong Kong Fei Long No Yes Yes Yes 3
China Gen Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Guile No Yes Yes Yes 3
United States Guy Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Flag of None.svg Ingrid No No No Yes 1
Germany Juli Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Germany Juni Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Karin Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Ken Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Flag of None.svg M. Bison Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Maki No No Yes Yes 2
Japan R. Mika Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
United States Rolento Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Italy Rose Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Ryu Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Thailand Sagat Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Sakura Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Japan Shin Akuma No Yes Yes Yes 3
United States Sodom Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Mexico T. Hawk No Yes Yes Yes 3
Spain Vega Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Hong Kong Yun No No Yes Yes 2
Russia Zangief Yes Yes Yes Yes 4
Total 28 34 37 38


  • Street Fighter Alpha 3 was initially ported in 1998 to the PlayStation, selling a million copies.[2] This version replaced the "hit" sprites with "hit" polygons in order to focus more memory on character animations. Juli, Juni, and Balrog were added to the immediate regular roster, and they were given new character portraits and their own storylines. Dee Jay, Fei Long, and T. Hawk (the remaining "New Challengers" from Super Street Fighter II) were also included to the roster. Evil Ryu, Guile, and Shin Akuma were also added as secret unlockable characters in the World Tour mode, a mode that allows the player to strengthen and customize their chosen character's fighting style while traveling around the world. An additional feature in the Japanese version also made use of the PocketStation peripheral, which allows the player to build up their character's strength. In this version, Shin Akuma serves as the final boss for Evil Ryu, as well as a secret boss in Final Battle. Due to RAM limitations, the only unique pairings available for a complete campaign in the Dramatic Battle mode are Ryu & Ken and Juli & Juni; other character combinations can only be used for one-match battles. The AI for dramatic battle/survival modes is exceptionally poor with the CPU neglecting to defend against sweep attacks, perhaps due to RAM again. As often with home ports of arcade games, combos often infinite ones are possible due to less frames that aren't possible in the arcade. (Particularly with V-Ism mode and in Dramatic Battle/Survival stages)
  • This version was re-released for download on the North American PlayStation Network on October 18, 2011.
  • The 1999 Dreamcast version, titled Street Fighter Alpha 3: Saikyo Dojo (or Street Fighter Zero 3: Saikyō-ryū Dōjō in Japan), uses all the added features from the PlayStation version of the game, but features a different World Tour mode. An online mode was added, allowing players to display their high scores. In addition, a Saikyo Dojo mode was added which pits a very weak character of the player's choice against two very strong opponents. The Dreamcast version was re-released in Japan in 2000 as Street Fighter Zero 3: Saikyō-ryū Dōjō for Matching Service as a mail order title via Dreamcast Direct. The Matching Service version differs from the original with the addition of an Online Versus mode.
  • The Sega Saturn version of Street Fighter Zero 3 was also released in 1999 shortly after the initial Dreamcast version in Japan only. This port makes use of Sega's 4-MB RAM cartridge and uses all the features from the PlayStation version except for the polygon usage and PocketStation mode. The Saturn version uses the extra RAM to include more frames, sprites but slower loading times than the PlayStation version, making it near arcade perfect. Evil Ryu and Guile are immediately selectable, while the player can also unlock Shin Akuma, who shares a slot with his regular counterpart. While the World Tour and Survival modes are virtually unchanged from the PlayStation version, Dramatic Battle mode received improvements with the addition of Reverse Dramatic Battle mode and allowing three different characters to be used. This is also the only port to feature Dramatic Battle against the entire roster of characters, as all other versions limit this mode to boss characters only. The AI for dramatic battle is far superior than the PlayStation version, other minor changes are revised scoring for some moves in the game (E.g. many characters that earn 3000pts per hit from a grab move (A very important fact to exploit for World Tour mode, where the score is the player's experience points) do not receive so much in the Saturn version). The features, characters etc. of the first home port on the PlayStation are available straight away for the Saturn version.
  • Street Fighter Zero 3 was re-released for the arcades in Japan in 2001 under the title of Street Fighter Zero 3 Upper (officially promoted as Street Fighter Zero 3↑). The game was released for the Dreamcast-based NAOMI hardware (rather than the original game's CP System II hardware) and features all 6 characters from the console ports and some balance changes, most notably removal of "crouch canceling" glitch which allowed V-ISM infinite combos. Upper also allows players to upload any customized characters from the Dreamcast version of the game by inserting a VMU into a memory card slot on the cabinet.
  • A Game Boy Advance version developed by Crawfish Interactive was released in 2002 under the title Street Fighter Alpha 3 Upper. The port is compressed and lacks several stages and music tracks from the previous arcade and console versions, although all of the characters are present. In addition, Eagle, Maki, and Yun, all whom were characters from Capcom vs. SNK 2 (released in 2001), were also added to the game. Only a small number of character voices were included in this version due to storage limitations, which the developers worked around by having characters share voice samples, modified with real-time pitch shifting, such as using a higher pitched version of Ken's voice for Sakura's attack calls.
  • The PlayStation Portable version, titled Street Fighter Alpha 3 MAX (Street Fighter Zero 3 Double Upper in Japan, officially promoted as Street Fighter Zero 3↑↑), was released in 2006 and features the additional characters from the GBA version as well as Ingrid from Capcom Fighting Evolution. This version is a near faithful port of the arcade version with minimal (almost non-existent) loading times and all frames and sprites intact. All of the added characters now feature their own in-game storylines and endings. The Dramatic Battle mode in this version is the only one where both the player and partner characters can be selected individually (allowing for any character pairing). It also includes the Reverse Dramatic Battle mode from the Saturn version, an exclusive tag mode called "Variable Battle", which is similar to Dramatic Battle but players can tag in and out their partner, and a mode called "100 Kumite" (a 100 fight series).
  • Street Fighter Alpha Anthology (Street Fighter Zero: Fighters' Generation in Japan) was released in 2006 for the PlayStation 2. It contains the arcade version of Alpha 3 as one of the immediately available games, along with a revised version of Alpha 3 Upper as a secret game. Being a compilation of arcade games, the World Tour Mode that was featured in the previous home ports is not included, nor are the extra characters introduced in the portable versions of the game, although it uses the soundtracks from the home versions. In Upper, all of the characters are readily available.
  • Street Fighter Alpha 3 has an arcade perfect inclusion via Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One, Nintendo Switch & Steam. The original 28 characters appear in the title and those introduced in the GBA PS2 and PSP versions are not included due to the game running on its original version through emulation. Save States are put in place to allow the player to continue with progress and this title alongside Street Fighter II: Hyper Fighting, Super Street Fighter II Turbo & Street Fighter III: 3rd Strike - Fight for the Future each have online functionality.


Review scores
AllGame4.5/5 stars[4]4.5/5 stars[3]
CVG5/5 stars[7]5/5 stars[6]
Eurogamer9 / 10[8]
Famitsu33 / 40[10]32 / 40[9]32 / 40[11]
GameFan288 / 300[12]
GamePro18.5 / 20[15]
4 / 5[16]
5 / 5[13][14]
GameSpot9 / 10[18]8 / 10[17]
IGN9.5 / 10[20]9.3 / 10[19]
Next Generation4/5 stars[21]
OPM (US)5/5 stars[22]
PSM9 / 10[23]
Dreamcast Magazine27 / 30[24]
Aggregate score

In Japan, Game Machine listed Street Fighter Alpha 3 on their September 1, 1998 issue as being the second most-successful arcade game of the year.[25]

On release, Famitsu magazine scored the Sega Saturn version of the game a 32 out of 40;[11] they later scored it 30 out of 40.[26] The PlayStation version also scored 32 out of 40 on release.[9] The Dreamcast version scored slightly better, receiving a 33 out of 40.[10]

The Official UK PlayStation Magazine said that the game would outlast Tekken 3, and stated "the only thing to tarnish this is the graphics. So if you think gameplay is more important than texture-mapped polygons, consider the score to be a ten."[22]

Next Generation reviewed the PlayStation version of the game, rating it four stars out of five, and stated that "Capcom may have outdone itself with the most playable and innovative fighting game since the original Street Fighter II."[21]

By 2003, the Game Boy Advance version had sold over 30,000 copies.[27] Meanwhile, the original PlayStation version sold a million units as of June 2016.[28]

In 2019, Game Informer ranked it as the 18th best fighting game of all time.[29]


  1. ^ Released in Japan, Asia, South America and Oceania as Street Fighter Zero 3 (Japanese: ストリートファイターZERO/3).
  1. ^ CPS-2, System 16: The Arcade Museum
  2. ^ Roper, Chris. "Capcom Releases Lifetime Sales Numbers". IGN.
  3. ^ House, Matthew (December 10, 2014). "Street Fighter Alpha 3 – Overview – allgame". Archived from the original on December 10, 2014. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  4. ^ House, Matthew (December 10, 2014). "Street Fighter Alpha 3 – Overview – allgame". Archived from the original on December 10, 2014. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  5. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha 3 for PlayStation Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  6. ^ Computer and Video Games, issue 209, pages 44-45
  7. ^ Computer and Video Games, issue 216, page 113
  8. ^ Bramwell, Tom (November 2, 2000). "Street Fighter Alpha 3". Retrieved November 17, 2019.
  9. ^ a b Weekly Famitsu, No. 400
  10. ^ a b ドリームキャスト – ストリートファイターZERO 3 サイキョー流道場. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.36. June 30, 2006.
  11. ^ a b Weekly Famitsu, No. 405
  12. ^ GameFan, volume 7, issue 4 (April 1999), pages 15 & 38-43
  13. ^ Major Mike (May 1999). "PlayStation ProReviews: Street Fighter Alpha 3". GamePro. No. 128. IDG. p. 74.
  14. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha Review for PlayStation on". March 15, 2004. Archived from the original on March 15, 2004. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  15. ^ Dan Elektro (November 1999). "Dreamcast ProReviews: Street Fighter Alpha 3" (PDF). GamePro. No. 134. IDG. p. 130.
  16. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha 3 Review for Dreamcast on". March 16, 2004. Archived from the original on March 16, 2004. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  17. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha 3 Review". GameSpot. January 13, 1999. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  18. ^ Gerstmann, Jeff (October 10, 2013). "Street Fighter Alpha 3 Review". GameSpot. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  19. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha 3". IGN. May 7, 1999. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  20. ^ "Street Fighter Alpha 3". IGN. May 19, 2000. Retrieved March 11, 2016.
  21. ^ a b "Finals". Next Generation. No. 52. Imagine Media. April 1999. p. 92.
  22. ^ a b Official U.S. Playstation Magazine, November 2001, page 52
  23. ^ Official PlayStation Magazine, Future Publishing issue 44, page 88, (April 1999)
  24. ^ Dreamcast Magazine, issue 1999-22, page 16
  25. ^ "Game Machine's Best Hit Games 25 - TVゲーム機ーソフトウェア (Video Game Software)". Game Machine (in Japanese). No. 571. Amusement Press, Inc. September 1, 1998. p. 21.
  26. ^ セガサターン – ストリートファイターZERO3. Weekly Famitsu. No.915 Pt.2. Pg.26. June 30, 2006.
  27. ^ "All Time Top 20 Best Selling Games". May 21, 2003. Archived from the original on February 21, 2006. Retrieved December 1, 2006.
  28. ^ "Platinum Titles". Capcom. Retrieved August 1, 2016.
  29. ^


  • Studio Bent Stuff (September 2000). All About Capcom Head-to-Head Fighting Games 1987–2000. A.A. Game History Series (Vol. 1) (in Japanese). Dempa Publications, Inc. ISBN 4-88554-676-1.

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