Perfect for franchise fans and arcade stick enthusiasts!
Since they were first shown at Evo 2019, the Street Fighter Editions of the HORI Real Arcade Pro V Hayabusa and Fighting Stick Minis have become must-have collector’s items for active Street Fighter players and nostalgic franchise fans alike.
All five of the special edition fight sticks are sights to behold and are true love letters to the franchise and would be perfect for play and display in any fighting game fan’s home. Also, there’s nothing better to use while playing Street Fighter 30th Anniversary Collection.
There’s a lot to love about each of the sticks in this collection. Every design is well thought out and executed. The Real Arcade Pro 4/V design has been around for a while, but the way that these sticks are designed shows there’s still a lot of room for creativity and excitement to make these sticks feel fresh.
The Classic Arcade stick is the perfect blend of retro and modern, echoing the aesthetic of Street Fighter II‘s original arcade cabinets. Even though I never played Street Fighter II at the arcades during its heyday, I do feel nostalgic for a time I was never a part of because of how crisp this stick’s design is. The panel just looks fantastic. From the static backdrop to the uneven pink and purple angles, this stick shouts the 90s’. The labeling for the directions and inputs are also a charming touch, just like on the arcade cabinet.
All of this vintage goodness fits perfectly on the HORI RAP V Hayabusa case. Even though the buttons aren’t concave like they were in the arcades, the Hayabusa buttons offer a faster response time, and the matte finish is great for slippery fingers. While you will have to remap most of your buttons if you want to use the cool red, white, and blue inputs as your primaries, it’s really not that big a deal for authenticity.
My one wish for this stick is that it came with an octagonal restrictor gate like the original arcade cabinet as well. The directional inputs are technically telling the truth, but I’d be lying if I didn’t feel like the joystick should click into place at each of the eight points on the image. This can easily be rectified by swapping out the gate, but doing so would void your warranty.
The Ryu stick comes in a red hot case to match the fighter’s iconic red headband. I thought about what the stick would look like if it was white with red accents instead, and while I imagine that would look pretty clean, I think what we got from HORI is a great choice. The fact that everything about Ryu is muted except his headband really pulls this design together.
The headband does get a little lost in the lower red backdrop but there’s not much else that could have been done to avoid that since this is the ideal placement and size for the character art to fit the stick layout. Red, black, and white always go together though so the overall design for this stick is a huge win.
While the Classic Arcade stick is my favorite in terms of how well it was executed and surprising it was to see, the Ryu RAP V Hayabusa will probably be the stick I use the most out of this series. The art is phenomenal, and everything flows together very well, from the paint splatters in the background, to the arc of the headband in the kanji. This is a fantastic stick.
I’d love to see more Street Fighter III: Third Strike artwork used nowadays and I’m so glad HORI decided to go with it for the Ryu and Chun-Li sticks. While it might be a pipe dream, I’d love to see other characters from that entry receive the same treatment. Street Fighter II gets a lot of attention, and it rightfully should, it practically created fighting games as we know them today, but other entries in the series should get some time in the sun, like more Street Fighter III: Third Strike content or even some Street Fighter Alpha iterations.
The Chun-Li stick might be my least favorite out of the bunch, but that doesn’t mean it looks bad. There’s always a bottom of a top-five! The orange accents are a little strange considering Chun-Li’s outfit is blue and gold, not blue and orange and the case is a deep blue, not the lighter shade I usually picture when I think of the strongest woman in the world.
The colors used for these special edition sticks were most likely taken from previously released colored versions of the HORI Real Arcade Pro 4 Kai for the PlayStation 4, so it makes sense to go with something HORI already had.
This stick will definitely stand out among the crowd and it really does look good, just not my ideal design when it comes to color choice. You can’t deny how powerful the artwork is. Street Fighter III: Third Stike continues to hold the title of the best look for the series in my book. The positioning of the artwork is perfect, with little being blocked off by the stick if at all, which is always an impressive feat for a pose so dynamic.
While the shade of orange is not my favorite when viewing this stick as a tribute to the fighter, I think a muted gold would have worked a tad better, it does fit the aesthetic of the entire series of sticks and really helps the character pop. Nothing about this design gets lost in the backdrop and everything flows very well.
I feel most impressed with the Fighting Stick Minis. Until now, there haven’t been any unique editions of those controllers, so kudos to HORI for taking something so small and making a huge impression by maximizing the design used and the boldness of the color choices.
The Fighting Stick Minis are big on stellar designs. The red and blue pop and are a welcome change from the previously used gray on Nintendo Switch and Black on PlayStation 4. I was actually hoping for a red Fighting Stick Mini since my review on the original Switch version, so seeing one so soon, with a blue companion is incredibly nice. Ryu and Ken look awesome together on their stick, and while Ryu is typically the main focus, it feels more like Ken takes the spotlight.
I know earlier I mentioned how I wasn’t a fan of this shade of blue or orange for the RAP V Hayabusa, but it works differently here with the Fighting Stick Mini, maybe because it isn’t just Chun-Li on the stick. Cammy is here this time around, and while she’s mostly covered by the joystick, you can’t knock HORI for going the extra mile and putting two characters on each Fighting Stick Mini. Cammy is immediately recognizable and the flow of her hair and her expression look great. Chun-Li is perfectly placed and I love how her kick takes over the entire bottom row of buttons.
I am thoroughly impressed by the amount of effort that went into designing the Fighting Stick Mini. It would have been easy enough to just put Ryu and Chun-Li on the sticks by themselves, but HORI went the extra mile and added both Ken and Cammy to the respective sticks. The art on these sticks appear to be original, please correct me if I am wrong in the comments, and are incredible interpretations of these characters. I think I would have actually preferred this artwork on the full-size sticks.
The decision to put the original art on the smaller sticks was probably to create a stronger pull for the tinier siblings, and I’ve got to say it worked. It’s a lot more difficult to hype up a smaller, more casual stick, but HORI pulled it off without a hitch. All in all, though, these are the coolest fun-size fight sticks around.
Both models house the same tried and true parts found in earlier releases of the HORI Real Arcade Pro V Hayabusa and the Fighting Stick Mini. The RAP V Hayabusa is home to HORI’s proprietary parts, with a Hayabusa lever and trimmed, matte, Hayabusa buttons. In comparison to the widely used Sanwa Denshi parts, which are a tad looser in execution, the Hayabusa parts are all about creating faster inputs. The sticks are tighter, and the buttons are shaved shorter, so there is less travel distance needed for a confirmed press.
The Fighting Stick Mini comes with more proprietary parts, which is, of course, necessary for how small the cases are for these guys, and yet HORI still managed to get just about every traditional function and a Turbo mode included in the stick. You get a custom micro switch for the stick and a full eight-button layout. There’s not much more you could ask for on a package so small.
In terms of additional features, these sticks function identically to those from the previous Switch iterations of the HORI RAP V and Fighting Stick Mini families. That being said, these sticks do come with some fairly robust features.
Both stick models come with +, -, Home, Capture, and Turbo buttons, which is quite a lot to ask for from something called “Mini”. There are a few features the big brother sticks have that their smaller siblings do not, which makes sense with it having a larger body. The RAP V Hayabusa sticks have the option to change what input the joystick emulates on the console.
That means you can utilize the D-Pad, the left stick, or the right stick, which helps for some games that limit menu or character inputs to one of those functions. You can also reassign the L, ZL, and + buttons to act as different inputs as well if that’s preferred. I can’t really imagine a reason why you would want or need to do this since most fighting games offer the capability to reassign any input in-game, perhaps this shortens the time making those three buttons act a certain way across the board instead of changing them on a case by case basis.
And not to be forgotten, both models, while marketed to a primarily Nintendo Switch audience, are fully compatible with PC through X-input. I would say the only stick you might have some issues with is the Fighting Stick Mini since its joystick is registered as the left stick input and that’s not always utilized in all PC fighting games for menus or character movements, or both depending on the game. The main game that sticks out in my mind is GUILTY GEAR XX ACCENT CORE PLUS R, but it has been ported to the Switch now, so I’m sure you’d be fine playing it on there.
If you’re looking for a solid special edition stick and have a love for the Street Fighter arcade classics you’ve got to pick up at least one of these celebratory controllers. This is not a collection to pass up! For an even more in-depth look at each of the original sticks and their features, follow-through the links in related posts below!
- Incredible artwork and bold colors really make these sticks shine.
- More functionality buttons than you can shake a stick at. You might not use all of them, but more is always better when it comes to capabilities.
- Solid stick and pushbuttons. Tried and true!
- Square Gate for the Classic Arcade stick feels out of place with directional inputs on the art. (Some might not care, but I prefer octagonal gates)
- Nintendo Switch only – I’ve seen plenty of folks wish for PS4 versions of these, perhaps one day they will be in the cards.
- The cable cover feels flimsy at times. (Do NOT pick it up by this when taking it out of the box, use the corners) It requires some extra force to close which will go against your judgment.
HORI provided Shoryuken with all Nintendo Switch Real Arcade Pro V Hayabusa and Fighting Stick Mini Street Fighter Edition models shown for this review.