Just like any other fighting game, Street Fighter 6 is all about finding what character works best for you. While with the right work and know-how, any fighter can be viable in combat — especially with Street Fighter 6’s amazing modern control type — some fighters are just created better than others.
Our tier list takes into account the mechanical potential of each fighter as well as the difficulty curve it takes for players of any skill level to learn the character and effectively use them in combat. But it is worth remembering that trying to force yourself to learn a character others tell you is “the best” can lead to burnout in a game like Street Fighter 6. If you just want to play the character you think looks the coolest, then go for it!
Here are all 18 Street Fighter 6 characters, ranked.
Lily is a great first character for newcomers. She is by far the easiest to learn, but that’s because she has a very limited toolset. Once you actually want to have a chance in a fight, her limited flexibility and variety of attacks will hold you back.
Jamie’s downfall is his core mechanic, the drunk level. While he isn’t a terrible fighter, the player needs to focus on constantly raising this level. There is no reason to add this extra difficulty when Juri plays similarly, is more powerful, and doesn’t have this added chore.
Dee Jay is one of the most interesting new characters in Street Fighter 6, with a lot of rhythm-based moves. Yet the absolutely absurd level of skill it takes to consistently play Dee Jay without opening yourself up to constant punishes and combos is unattainable for most beginner and intermediate players.
Blanka has a lot of damage potential when played right. But his over-reliance on Blanka-Chan Dolls leaves him with a heavy handicap against most opponents. If you can execute perfect combos, then maybe you have a chance, but you are better off learning a more reliable character.
Chun-Li may be perfect for you. She is great at punishing the opponent and has great movement. However, she is very complex to master, and her best combos are quite vulnerable to enemy punishes.
Ryu is our favorite boy. He’s the poster child of Street Fighter. But he is bland. He is squarely in the middle of the road, with a mid-move set and range ability. Most players, even new ones, can punish most strikes and combos from Ryu. Poor guy.
Cammy is a great fighter, in a vacuum. She is incredibly fast and has some amazing damage output when executed properly. The issue is that many other fighters are able to punish the smallest mistake. If you play as Cammy, you better hope your opponent doesn’t choose Marisa.
Luke is a lot like Ryu. He is decent, but nothing special. His weak range leaves him over-reliant on the Drive Gauge, which can be a disadvantage during high-risk fights.
The unequaled amount of reach Dhalsim offers makes him a fantastic fighter. Keeping your enemy at bay and irritating them with constant long-range attacks can lead to incredible punishments. However, his recoveries leave him wide open to counterattacks, and often you won’t come back from a mistake.
Ken is Ol’ Reliable. He has a similar move set to past games and his toolset of kicks and punches has a lot of potential for stringing together combos and keeping the enemy at bay. He isn’t too fancy, but he doesn’t need to be.
E. Honda is a character who manages to be both agile and powerful, despite his size. He has great combo potential but the biggest drawback is a toolset that lacks a good response to getting cornered.
The name of the game for Kimberly is speed and simplicity. Playing Kimberely is about getting in quickly and popping off hits to chip away at your opponent. Her speed is great for getting up close, but also for retreating in a pinch.
JP is a great option for those who want an all-around fighter. While he doesn’t rise to S-tier, he is competent in close-quarters and long-range combat. One of the bigger drawbacks is that this versatility comes with a higher learning curve.
Guile’s power comes from his Super Arts, which when used properly can corner enemies like nobody’s business. While his move set is incredibly powerful, it does take some effort to master Guile.
There are downsides to Zangief. He has a large hitbox and a slow reaction time. But he is an incredibly dangerous grappler with perhaps the single greatest damage output of any fighter in Street Fighter 6. Unless your opponent is incredibly confident, they can keep you from getting even one combo in, they will be at your mercy. Zangief hits hard.
Juri is the combo queen of Street Fighter 6, thanks to powerful kicks that can be combined to great effect with her Feng Shui Engine. She has incredible control of the battlefield and can easily counter and punish most fighters.
In addition to being one of the coolest-looking characters on the roster, Manon’s variety of throws and special moves make her a formidable foe. Yet she is easy to learn, making her the perfect character for new and old players alike.
For a heavy fighter, Marisa has a shocking amount of range that backs an incredible amount of damage. As one of Street Fighter 6’s new fighters, Marisa is easier to learn and isn’t bogged down by years of move sets and set ways of playing.