With every iteration of Street Fighter, some of the old guard fall off and new blood steps into the spotlight. One of the most fascinating things about games with such long histories is watching the ebb and flow of talent. Street Fighter V is no different, and Ryota ‘John Takeuchi’ Takeuchi is the latest young star to break out into the scene.
In truth, Takeuchi had no intentions of becoming a star or to play professionally. The young architecture student started playing just like you or me — because his friends played. In just 2 years time, he has accomplished things beyond his wildest dreams on the way to becoming an international sensation.
Takeuchi had a shockingly fast start to his career. At only 18 years old he started finding success online and at various local events. Within 4 months of Street Fighter V’s release, he was already beginning to put up impressive results at competitive tournaments full of well-known professionals. This made the community take notice and he became a fan favorite not just for his fast paced, exciting playstyle but for his out of game personality. Takeuchi breaks the mold: he has fun pop-offs, poses like his main character Rashid, dances on stage, poses for the cameras, the works. These antics led to his first big break.
Fast forward to September 2016, and Takeuchi won a reddit community vote to get a crowd funded trip to the Capcom Pro Tour Ranking event ‘First Attack’ held in Puerto Rico. This was the first time Takeuchi had ever traveled or competed internationally. You could say the event went well. Jet lag? He didn’t care. New environment? Whatever. Takeuchi steamrolled the event, winning in spectacular fashion, all the while exhibiting that lovable personality he’d become known for in the first place.