In a recent interview with Street Fighter 6 studio executives, producer Shuhei Matsumoto revealed that the game’s Battle Hub mode was inspired by the global pandemic.
Early conceptualization of Street Fighter 6 began in 2018, three years after the release of Street Fighter 5. By the time Covid-19 hit the world and changed the way people interact with each other, the game was in deep development. The Battle Hub mode was originally created as an add-on to it, presumably because it was not clear at the time how long the pandemic would keep large social gatherings out.
The Battle Hub mode allows you to create your own avatar, walk around an enclosed space, interact with other players using emotes, and play with online matches. Since there weren’t many opportunities to socialize in real life, Matsumoto wondered, “What if we did an online version of the arcade? Can we do it in Street Fighter?” The result was the Battle Hub. It was also partially inspired by the fact that many of the developers grew up in arcades and have fond memories of them.
In the recent beta version of Street Fighter 6, you can fully immerse yourself in the arcade simulation, and the character actually gets into the machine to play a match. You can take a break from Street Fighter 6 and play old arcade games like Street Fighter II, as well as watch fights.