Street Fighter 5's real-money currency will not be ready in time for the launch of the game's first DLC character 'Alex' next week, Capcom has announced. To make up for it, the character will be given away to all players as a "free trial" until the functionality is introduced.
The in-game store, which will let players purchase DLC characters and Story Mode Costumes, is still due to go live next Wednesday, March 30. But it will only include support for Street Fighter 5's free in-game currency 'Fight Money', not microtransaction currency 'Zenny', which Capcom says has been pushed back to ensure it's "fully tested and optimised".
The publisher doesn't yet know when the Zenny store will launch, instead saying it will "release it as soon as it's ready".
"One feature that will not be making it into the March update will be the Zenny (real money) functionality of the in-game shop," Capcom said in a statement provided to VideoGamer.com. "We have taken a long hard look at this part of the store, and after much review, have decided it is not ready to launch just yet. As Zenny is purchased with real money, we wanted to be extra careful and make sure it’s fully tested and optimized before launching it. There is currently no ETA on the Zenny store and we will release it as soon as it’s ready.
"We realize that this causes an inconvenience to fans who want to purchase the DLC characters, such as Alex, but do not have enough Fight Money or own the Season Pass. To address this, we will be making Alex available for free as a trial period to all players, until the Zenny shop launches. This also will apply to any future DLC character that releases prior to the Zenny shop launching.
"Once the Zenny shop launches, the free trial for any DLC characters that released prior to the Zenny shop opening will end, and players will need to either use Fight Money, Zenny, or the Season Pass to access those characters."
Any content purchased for DLC characters using Fight Money will remain in players' accounts once the Zenny store launches, Capcom adds, but you'll need to purchase the associated fighter with Fight Money or Zennys to continue using the content. Alternatively, you can purchase the game's Season Pass.
As compensation for the issue, Capcom will be giving all Season Pass owners a new stage for free "in the near future", and exclusive access to each DLC character's premium costumes until the Zenny shop launches.
Ryu and Chun-Li's Story Mode costumes will also be made available for free to all players on March 30, which Capcom says hold an 80,000 Fight Money value.
"Thank you for continuing to support Street Fighter V and we promise that the game will continue to improve from here on out. More new updates, fixes and support for other pressing issues like rage quitters are in the works and we hope to have more information to share soon."
Street Fighter 5's first DLC character Alex and his related story content goes live next Wednesday, March 30 at 10am PT (4pm BST). An additional patch, meanwhile, releasing two days earlier on Monday, March 28, will introduce Challenge Mode, Online Rematch options, 8-player lobbies, match spectating and balance changes. You can find out more about both updates in the video below.