Four Favorite Fighting Game Mechanics
Last month we showed you some of the worst mechanics conceived in fighting games, and man, they were pretty bad. However, where there are terrible mistakes being made, there are always some good ideas that work out. Some are even so well received that they have an impact on fighting games as a whole that lasts for years after their original implementation.
With that said, here is a list of some of the best mechanics that we've seen in fighting games, the ones that have stood the test of time and helped to shape how fighting games today are played.
Guilty Gear XX – Burst
Since Arc Systems Works suddenly appeared in the fighting game scene with the Guilty Gear franchise, the company has sought to bring new concepts and ideas to the way fighting games work, pairing it all up with exceptional 2D anime-style visuals. Many mechanics have made their way into other non-GG titles, such as Roman Cancels, but the Burst mechanic is one that stands out the most.
In Guilty Gear, the Burst allows players to break themselves out of a potentially damaging combo, knocking the attacker away and allowing the user a chance to get back in the fray. However, the move could also be used offensively, as a properly applied offensive burst would reward the user with an instantly filled tension gauge. This allowed various strategies to be applied that could be used either to save your skin, or put your opponent against the ropes. However, crafty players can also bait out a burst, which can leave the user defenseless and open for even more punishment than if he had landed it.
Bursting has since become a popular mechanic for many other fighting games that feature lengthy combos, and has become a common staple for ASW games, appearing in BlazBue and the recent Persona 4 Arena. Outside of the studio's own games, the mechanic has since been borrowed in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, dubbed the Mega Crash, which sacrifices red life instead. The 2011 Mortal Kombat revival also uses a variation of this, called the Breaker, which sacrifices 2/3 of your meter to bust out of a heavy damaging combo. Bursting has definitely had an impact on combo heavy titles, as it helps to even the playing field and prevent things from getting too out of hand, while also providing an additional level of strategy for the games that utilize it.
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