Monday, June 20, 2005

Fighting Game Review

Okay, so I filled four pages with musings about the SFS. Here's something a bit more lighthearted. On Friday, I picked up two fighting games. The first was Capcom: Fighting Evolution. Like all Capcom games, it's a crossover. The other game I picked up was Tao Feng: Fist of the Lotus. Both games were cheap.

Tao Feng was a sad game. The game obviously had a lot of effort put into it. It was a very pretty game. The writing was fun, if bad. The fighting was meh. So the game should have been meh, right? Wrong. The game SUCKED. Why?

Okay, I have NEVER seen a fighting game where the camera is bad. It's a SOLVED PROBLEM. Why is it that Tao Feng has a camera more painful than the camera in Resident Evil? Suddenly and without warning, the camera will instantly FLIP so that you're portrayed on the other side of the screen. If you were pressing "back", like you have to in order to BLOCK, you're suddenly charging straight at the enemy!

This happens, in general, four or more times in a fight. What were they thinking? Who knows? Without that horrible, horrible part, the game would probably be... meh.

A lesson to learn for your fighting game: imagine using a given maneuver on random people on the street. Could they avoid it? If so, it shouldn't be IN YOUR GAME. This goes double for "combos", which are a bad idea in the first place, but an exceptionally bad idea when a nine hit combo takes more than five seconds, most of which are spent looking at the injured party politely standing there and REFUSING TO BLOCK. Or... step backwards. Or fall over on purpose.

Now, the funny thing was that I also played the Capcom game. I'm not exactly an expert - I'm good at a lot of fighting games, but the SNK/Capcom/Mortal Kombat breeds always elude me. This is no exception - I can't even beat arcade mode. How sad is that? Still, it's fun.

But I can't GO anywhere. I can't beat arcade mode, so there's really no interest in playing. I actually played Tao Feng more, even though it was absolutely terrible in comparison, because it had a definite ending which could be reached, albeit after many camera flips and much cheeze.

Lesson two: if your players can't accomplish anything, it doesn't matter how good your game is, it isn't getting played.

I also saw "The Hotel Rwanda", which was a good movie.

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