I think this is one of the more important topics that will regularily come up in this subreddit (and already does, actually).
Now, don’t be mistaken - this isn’t a discussion about what characters specifically are coming in 2017 and beyond, no. But rather - HOW will Capcom approach revealing and releasing the characters
Looking at how the 2016 Season went so far - we can already tell a few things:
- Capcom obviously planned to continue teasing the players with Ono’s tweets up until official reveals for the initial cast until the dataminers pretty much revealed the entire 2016 DLC character lineup
- Once Capcom realised they couldn’t keep the characters secret anymore due to all the leaks, and they announced them all at once via the famous Season Pass sillhoutette image we saw first at Paris Games Week in October. A smart move while still keeping the characters’ designs and such in secret
- It’s very likely that Capcom wanted to go the Killer Instinct route and insert the short next character teasers at the end of their trailers. They did this four times - with Nash (at the end of official SFV teaser trailer back in December 2014), with Bison (put him at the end of Nash’s trailer), with Necalli (showed his face at the end of Ken trailer back in late June) and with Alex (when they put his very first frames of the intro animation at the end of a SFV overview trailer released in early March)
- The character releases themselves are scheduled to the end of each month. This is probably done to keep the competitive scene focused on the current cast and not suddenly shake up the entire game with a new roster member as it adds a whole new matchup to learn for everybody, even despite enforcing a character ban for 7-10 days from his/her release
- While the dev team didn’t explicitly state if the second Season is in the works yet or not, nor have they stated if they intend on making one to support the game with new content - I think it’s not an unreasonable guess that Capcom will release additional characters next year, and maybe even beyond that (since SFV is built to be a continuously updated service with more content added to it on a regular basis, and because 22 characters seems rather small for a Street Fighter game when even Vamilla SFIV had 24 on consoles and grew up to 44 in Ultra, 7 years into the game’s life cycle)
So the main question that remains is… will we see the similar release model Capcom is using this year for the future characters?
Do you think they will switch it up by keeping the characters in total secret, or return to giving small teasers of them either via Ono’s Twitter account or via trailers a-la Killer Instinct? Because as long as the data for 2017’s Season is not present in the game client itself - we won’t know who exactly might be making it into the roster come next year, besides some reliable guesses with the likes of Akuma or Sakura, so basically the fan-favourite characters