Saturday, April 08, 2006

Five Fighting Games - Part 3

Sorry that I haven't updated in what feels like forever. We have been really busy trying to get God Of War 2 ready for E3 and what not. I decided to post the last of this random article that I had to write for a publisher at one point. I wrote it so long ago that I barely even remember why I had to write it.

Since this is the most complex games of all time I figured I would tell a story about when I landed the most complex thing for the first time ever. I was in Japan at More arcade which has perhaps the best players in the entire world. It was during the middle of a week day and Daigo himself was there practicing for SBO. I asked my friend to ask Daigo if I could play him a couple of games in every Street Fighter game they have - ST, A3, 3S, and CvS2. Daigo laughed and said sure.

So i got beat up in CvS2 cause I suck at that game, held my own in ST, actually won a game in 3s (this was before he started to beat everyone up in that game) and the final game was Street Fighter Alpha 3. He picks VRyu and I picked VZangief. I suck more at A3 than any other SF game. I don't know why but that game just doesn't click with me. On top of that, I'm white and suck at doing VC's.

However! On that day I actually landed the full Gief VC (including the OTG) against Daigo, something I hadn't landed in years. Even though I got beat up by Daigo going from one game to another, somehow landing that one combo made me smile. is the final part of this series.

5 most complex fighting games of all time:
A. Street Fighter 2: World Warrior. The grand daddy of fighting games and arguably more complex than some of the current games that are coming out (Dead Or Alive for example). Having moves that no one had ever attempted before - Spinning Pile Driver and Dragon Punch motions, World Warrior had depth that stemmed beyond Paper Rock Scissors. Different character classes - fireball characters, grappling characters, sonic boom characters, zoning characters, link combo characters, there was something there for everyone and they all played off on a meta-relationship that didn't allow one to rise to the top of being the best. This game really did set the bar for complexity that few games have even come close to reaching.

B. Virtua Fighter 2. While at first appearing to be easy with the 3 buttons, Virtua Fighter took those 3 buttons and created some of the most complex game play ever seen. Requiring the player first to spend weeks just learning how to activate their different moves, while some moves take even longer such as Akira and his Stun Palm of Doom, weeks were required to master situations on how to land those moves. So much time is spent on learning a character and fleshing the character out, that it is often unheard of that anyone masters more than one character at a time.

C. Super Street Fighter 2: Turbo. Being the 5th incarnation of the same engine, Super Turbo introduced new elements to an engine and created arguably the best Street Fighter to date. Overheads (standing moves that had to be blocked high), Air Juggles, Super meter, Throw Techs, were all introduced for the first time to bring out a whole new world of depth to an already complex world. Being released in
1994, the game still has a strong following where people travel all over the world to play each other.

D. Tekken 3. Namco wanting to break away from being, 'that other 3d game' decided to re haul the Tekken engine and created one of the best fighting games the world has ever seen. People soon realized that 10 strings were not good with all the parrying, countering and holes that they left, so soon players moved on to bigger and better things. Advanced techniques such as light stepping, wave dashing, crouch dashing, etc allowed for players to master more and more things to win with. Combined with the fact that characters were time released - strategies that were good one week could potentially be obsolete when a new character was unlocked.

E. Marvel Vs. Capcom 2. Having 56 characters and teams of 3 characters per team - the team combinations went through the roof. Not only that, but the teams were built around a helper subsystem, so that when you were playing as the point character you could still call out one of your teammates - and the helpers each had 3 different things they could do. So once players even got past which helper subtype is good for each character and what characters make up a good team, then the concept of counter teams were introduced and everything that goes along with that. But not only is there that level of depth, but also the techniques that each character could do. Flying, Air Dashing, Fast Fly, Push Block canceling, etc all became common words that people used as a language to communicate with one another over the various techniques that they were discovering how to do and how to win with.


joey nguyen said...

i unfortunately didn't achieve the semi-complex thing i wanted to: slide infinite soo mighty on the big screen during the Marvel TT at evo2004. i got the psylocke hit, had the setup, but my nerves/playing the stick on the floor killed me. here is something i literally practiced to the point of being able to do it with my eyes closed, and i had no clutch. this is a moment i will always regret.

Anonymous said...

daigo is insane.

Anonymous said...

Good idea. However, (and I see this turning up because you say you're white :p) I think you discount the SNK side of 2d fighters. I think the SNK fighting engine has been much more complicated than the Capcom one, generally speaking.

Maj said...

Dunno what game you're talking about, but CvS2 is 10 times more complex than anything SNK has ever made. The whole juggle combo system in SNK has always been: Once you hit them, you can hit them again for a little while. What's complex about that?

Plus Capcom games last 10 times longer than any SNK game, because their balance system is way more complex. Every KOF game has at least one auto-include character that's on every winning team. And it's usually the dumbest one-dimensional, one-trick character in the game.

SNK makes good games and good character designs, but not good enough to be in top 5 of any list.

Anonymous said...

Maj: Granted, Capcom generally makes deeper fighters than SNK....but KOF98 is still considered by a lot of oldies to be one of the greatest 2D fighting games made.

I would probably put KOF98 up there with SSF2T,MVC2,SF3 and GGXX:R on my personal top 5 for 2D fighters. To each his own though, I respect all opinions.