The newest installment in fighting game series Guilty Gear opened for early access on June 8th, available to fans who pre-purchased the game’s Deluxe or Ultimate edition. Guilty Gear: Strive was first announced to be released in 2020, but was postponed once due to COVID-19 complications to April 2021, and postponed again to June 11th after negative feedback from the open beta. According to Arc System Works developers, the extra time provided by the second delay was used to polish the game and its online aspects, again adjusting for a post-COVID gaming world.
Guilty Gear is known for its 2D lobbies, anime-esque style, and the trademark complicated gameplay of any fighting game. Part of Strive’s appeal comes from the desire to make the game more accessible to newcomers, although so far the gameplay designed around that desire has mixed reviews. Chief creator Daisuke Ishiwatari, however, is a fan of the changes.
[T]here was a very big difference in the skill level between a player who has played the Guilty Gear series until now, and a new player who may be interested in the series for the first time. So we wanted to do something about this issue. We looked back and thought, it’s a shame this is the case. We wanted to open up Guilty Gear.
With this shift, it is unknown how Guilty Gear: Strive will be received when it is released to the general public on June 11th. It will be available for the PS5, PS4, and PC players on release. DLC characters will become available later in the summer, in July and August 2021, and more characters and game modes will be dropped as time goes on. As of right now, Guilty Gear: Strive is all potential, and trailers, and teasers, and only time will tell how it lives up to the other games of the series.