Street Fighter 6 Rank System Primer
As is standard with any competitive online game these days, Street Fighter 6 features its own rank system. Accessed by selected Ranked Match under the Online section in Fighting Ground, this mode allows players to fight for League Points (LP) in hopes of climbing the ranks and facing progressively stronger opponents.
The rank system in Street Fighter 6 is quite straightforward, as it models itself in a similar fashion to other esports titles like League of Legends and StarCraft II. There are leagues named after various metals and precious stones, such as bronze, gold, and platinum. Within each league, there are five divisions, with the fifth division serving as the stepping stone over to the next league.
So it’s clear that the system itself is simple. To make things more interesting, aside from discussing the details of the system, we’ll be talking about what you can expect from players in each league in terms of skill level, habits, and tendencies. This way, you can prepare yourself better mentally for your ranked games, and get better results in the process.
New Street Fighter 6 accounts going into ranked matches will first be greeted by a screen with four skill level options: Beginner, Novice, Intermediate, and Advanced. Each option is self-explanatory, though the game does compare every option to a range of ranks in Street Fighter V — giving you a good reference point if you’ve played the previous game in the series.
Selecting Beginner automatically places you into the Rookie league, which is of course the perfect starting point for those new to fighting games as a whole. Those who have played fighting games in the past but haven’t jumped into online play before will want to select Novice, which goes straight into the Iron, Bronze, and Silver leagues.
For those that have a bit more experience, Intermediate is the way to go. And for those with thousands of hours in fighting games coursing through their veins, Advanced will test your mettle. Regardless of which option you choose, however, you will still be subject to a total of 10 placement matches per character. The ranks of the opponents you get during these placement matches will be based on your selection.
Beginner: Rookie League
As the name implies, the Rookie league is for absolute fighting game beginners. If you’ve never played a fighting game in your life and are looking to join this vibrant and highly competitive community, this is where you should start.
Players in Rookie league will, for lack of a better term, tend to mash random moves and attack relentlessly — mainly because they don’t have a grasp of fighting game fundamentals. They tend to just throw out normal moves for the entirety of every single round, without any rhyme or reason to any of it.
They will also practically never block, as they may not even be aware how to do so. In order to climb out of this league, we highly recommend that you read our guide to the basics and fundamentals of Street Fighter 6. It contains four important tips that will elevate your game beyond just randomly pressing buttons in the open.
Novice: Iron, Bronze, & Silver Leagues
Bronze, Silver, and Gold Leagues all house players that now display an improved awareness of what is even going on in their matches, and will likely know a combo or two for their chosen character.
What holds players in these leagues back, though, is their tendency to just stick to a reckless gameplan. Many Gold players for example will just try to skip playing neutral properly by jumping forward often, which is a risky thing to do in a game with dedicated anti-air moves. You cannot block in the air, after all, so an anti-air move with invincibility frames such as Luke’s Rising Uppercut is guaranteed to hit you when you jump.
Furthermore, players in these leagues tend to rely too much on raw Drive Impact attempts. They will attempt to blow through your offense this way, so be prepared to either react with your own Drive Impact or just be less aggressive with your pressure.
To climb out of this league, we recommend sharpening your fundamentals further. Block and punish more, practice reacting to jump-ins, and learn your character’s best pokes.
Intermediate: Gold, Platinum, & Diamond Leagues
Here’s where things get really interesting. Gold, Platinum and Diamond both contain players that have studied their chosen characters well, and know how to optimize damage, corner carry, okizeme (Japanese for “wakeup game”) — or all three when they get opportunities. You’ll start to see players ending their combos in Super Arts way more often here as well, in order to maximize damage.
Also, look out for players implementing strategies that target your Drive Gauge. Gold, Platinum and Diamond players all realize that going into Burnout is just a miserable thing, and so they will employ tactics like confirming stray hits into Drive Impact. Unfortunately, random, raw Drive Impact attempts still exist in these leagues, so your reactions will really be put to the test here.
And speaking of confirming stray hits, hit confirming also becomes an important skill in Gold, Platinum and Diamond, in order to turn pokes into small combos that cause knockdowns as well. Hit confirming is the act of visually confirming that a poke has scored a successful hit on the opponent, and canceling into a special move thereafter.
The reason this skill is vital is because many of the special moves that would be good to cancel into in these situations would otherwise be highly punishable on block. Hit confirming therefore makes it so that you only cancel into said special moves when you actually land a hit with a poke.
But more than anything, it’s consistency that will help you get out of the intermediate level and into the next rank. Not dropping combos, consistently punishing unsafe moves whenever you get the chance, and keeping cool under pressure are what separate the elite from the middle of the pack.
Advanced: Master League
The true champions of Street Fighter 6 can be found in Master League. They are all really, really good — and have game sense that truly transcends that of the average player. Professional players also hit this rank very quickly, and have the League Points to back up their titles.
Master players possess a vast working knowledge of the game’s mechanics and intricacies, and know how to exploit the advantages that their character has in battle. The nuances of each matchup are now things they know like the back of their hand as well.
Execution is also a hallmark of their game, as they are able to extend and optimize combos to squeeze as much damage out of them as possible. Hit confirming is also just child’s play to them at this point, so expect Master players to consistently convert their pokes into big damage.
If you ever reach this sacred place, pat yourself on the back. You’re definitely a cut above the rest in Street Fighter 6.