Fighting games for PC

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John

Fighting games for PC

Postby John » Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:03 am

A bunch of SNK fighting games are on sale at GOG this week, and it's got me thinking once again about fighting games for PC. See, I love fighting games. At least I think I do. Like every other teenage boy in the 90s, I went a little nuts for Street Fighter II. Unfortunately, I never had the quarters or the right home console to really find out if fighting games were My Thing. What little evidence I did have rather suggested that they were not. I couldn't do the special moves in Street Fighter. I didn't like Mortal Kombat at all. My younger brother crushed me every time I tried to play Virtua Fighter. It wasn't until years later when I got Street Fighter II (and later Street Fighter Alpha 3) for my Gameboy Advance that I was able to play enough to develop a certain minimal competence. In the process I learned that though fighting games may not necessarily be My Thing I'm still a little nuts for Street Fighter.

My Gameboy Advance has long since died, so these days I mostly play Street Fighter Alpha 2 on my PC. I love the game, but I'm starting to get a hankering for something new. What I'd really like to do now is play Virtua Fighter, but the best and possibly only way to do that is to buy a disc with the old Virtua Fighter II port on eBay--and I'd much rather get something from GOG or Steam instead. So recommend me a game, Internet! Tell me about how great the SNK stuff is. (Actually, they're going for about $2/game at the moment. They really only need to be okay at that price.) Extol the virtues of Skullgirls. Give me a list of Guilty Gear's superlative qualities. Try to trick me into buying Injustice. Or, alternatively, try knock the nostalgia glasses from my eyes, because the next time Street Fighter IV goes on sale for less than $10, I'm totally going to buy it.

One thing to keep in mind is that I have a strictly Linux PC. Wine can work wonders, but it can't really handle Direct X 11, so the very latest and greatest fighting games (Street Fighter V, Guilty Gear Xrd, Injustice 2, and so forth) are right out.
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Charnel Mouse
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Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby Charnel Mouse » Sun Aug 06, 2017 11:54 am

GOG seem to have removed Guilty Gear games from their catalogue, but I'll post what I'd written anyway:

If a lack of online multiplayer isn't a deal breaker, I've had a lot of fun with Guilty Gear #Reload (on GOG). It plays at a fast clip, and there are a few mechanics town in to discourage turtling, and to give you a chance to break out of combos.

The characters also play very differently to each other. Want a character with similar specials to Ryu to get in the swing of things? Play Ky. Want a character all about getting right up in the enemy's face and staying there? Play Chipp. Want to place invisible traps all over the stage? Play Testament. There's a grappler with a massive health bar, and a guy with a chain scythe that can poke people on the other side of the stage. There's my personal favourite, who summons up random ghosts that each have different move sets.

Decent rock/metal background music, too.
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John

Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby John » Sun Aug 06, 2017 3:38 pm

Charnel Mouse wrote:If a lack of online multiplayer isn't a deal breaker, I've had a lot of fun with Guilty Gear #Reload (on GOG). It plays at a fast clip, and there are a few mechanics town in to discourage turtling, and to give you a chance to break out of combos.

Hey, thanks.

Online multiplayer would be neat, but I don't consider it essential. Fighting games are the one genre where I'm really tempted to go online and play against human opponents, which is something I pretty much never do otherwise. I think it's because the typical fighting game match is just a couple of minutes long, tops. Or maybe it's because I know that beating the game in singleplayer (be it arcade mode, story mode, or whatever) doesn't actually tell you whether or not you are any good at the game. You need to fight some humans for that. So, yeah, provided that I can get matches that are mostly appropriate to my skill level, I kind of want to go online.

I do have a couple of reservations about Guilty Gear, though. I have a little first-hand experience with Guilty Gear in the form of the GBA port ofGuilty Gear X. So I know Guilty Gear controls aren't too, too different from those of Street Fighter, which is my benchmark for fighting games. (The GBA Guilty Gear was a terrible, terrible port and probably the worst game that I have ever played, but it did--I think--get the character controls approximately right.) But whenever I hear people talk about Guilty Gear it's all "Roman cancel" this and "air-dash cancel" that and I have no idea what's going on. To be fair, Street Fighter V, which is allegedly the most noob-friendly iteration of Street Fighter since who knows when, nevertheless has V-Skills, V-Reversals, V-Triggers, EX dashes and attacks, and who knows what else and yet I (sort of) know what those are just from watching matches. So I'm going to assume that I could eventually figure Guilty Gear out. My real concern about Guilty Gear is that it looks really . . . um . . . let's call it frantic. The characters are zooming around the screen, on the ground and in the air, seemingly willy-nilly. (Also, things are exploding all the time.) The issue is that I tend to struggle against fast, mobile, jumpy characters in Street Fighter, so if Guilty Gear has a whole lot of those--and it sort of looks like they all might be that way--it may not be the game for me.
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Ringwraith

Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby Ringwraith » Sun Aug 06, 2017 4:03 pm

Old Guilty Gear was pretty hardcore.
It's why it had a surge of popularity with Xrd as they lowered the barrier to entry a bunch (while still letting you pull off very complicated things at the higher end), had a bunch of excellent tutorials, and pinched Stylish mode from BlazBlue which as an option, instead of having to do all the directional inputs for specials and such, you can just use a direction and a button to get different strings of moves.

Guilty Gear and its ilk are identified as being part of airdash fighters, those with typically anime artstyles (hence the other term anime fighters) but often characterised by the air simply being another dimension you can block in, dash in, and (double) jump in.
Often cited as more of a middle ground between something like Street Fighter and airdashers is UNiEL (Under Night In-Birth:exe[late]), as very few characters have airdashes or double-jumps but it's got a bunch more of the unique character mechanics and other tools airdashers have. However, I'd wait for the next version of that one, ST, to land, as that's got some excellent tutorials from people whom have been messing with the Japanese version, including letting you set a point in a challenge combo you can take over from so you don't have keep repeating the early part to get to the point you're struggling with.

SFV is cited as being more newbie-friendly mostly because it's got an actual input buffer, that pretty much every other game already had but SF stubbornly refused to add (and even then only 3 frames, so very stingy compared to most), and also more emphasis on basic risk/reward things (they like chopping out fancy "option selects" that basically gave people an easy out, like the infamous crouch jab + throw on wakeup in IV, which cancelled out a throw if they attempted, and if not, you simply poked out, no need to make a decision, just do both!) Though SFV's tutorial features are pants and you have to go and outsource them on the internet, which are thankfully, are kind of there due to the community.

(I've absorbed a lot of fighting game nomenclature and stuff from mostly watching it, I'm utterly pants at playing any of it, but I can ream off stuff if you want to know things! Success?)
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Charnel Mouse
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Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby Charnel Mouse » Sun Aug 06, 2017 6:44 pm

John wrote:
Charnel Mouse wrote:If a lack of online multiplayer isn't a deal breaker, I've had a lot of fun with Guilty Gear #Reload (on GOG). It plays at a fast clip, and there are a few mechanics town in to discourage turtling, and to give you a chance to break out of combos.

Hey, thanks.

Online multiplayer would be neat, but I don't consider it essential. Fighting games are the one genre where I'm really tempted to go online and play against human opponents, which is something I pretty much never do otherwise. I think it's because the typical fighting game match is just a couple of minutes long, tops. Or maybe it's because I know that beating the game in singleplayer (be it arcade mode, story mode, or whatever) doesn't actually tell you whether or not you are any good at the game. You need to fight some humans for that. So, yeah, provided that I can get matches that are mostly appropriate to my skill level, I kind of want to go online.

I do have a couple of reservations about Guilty Gear, though. I have a little first-hand experience with Guilty Gear in the form of the GBA port ofGuilty Gear X. So I know Guilty Gear controls aren't too, too different from those of Street Fighter, which is my benchmark for fighting games. (The GBA Guilty Gear was a terrible, terrible port and probably the worst game that I have ever played, but it did--I think--get the character controls approximately right.) But whenever I hear people talk about Guilty Gear it's all "Roman cancel" this and "air-dash cancel" that and I have no idea what's going on. To be fair, Street Fighter V, which is allegedly the most noob-friendly iteration of Street Fighter since who knows when, nevertheless has V-Skills, V-Reversals, V-Triggers, EX dashes and attacks, and who knows what else and yet I (sort of) know what those are just from watching matches. So I'm going to assume that I could eventually figure Guilty Gear out. My real concern about Guilty Gear is that it looks really . . . um . . . let's call it frantic. The characters are zooming around the screen, on the ground and in the air, seemingly willy-nilly. (Also, things are exploding all the time.) The issue is that I tend to struggle against fast, mobile, jumpy characters in Street Fighter, so if Guilty Gear has a whole lot of those--and it sort of looks like they all might be that way--it may not be the game for me.

I'm nowhere near good enough to even think about doing things like roman cancels, so I can't really comment on that.

For the characters being fast and jumpy... well, yeah, they are, but in a way that's mostly uniform. Everyone, with the exception of one or two characters, can dash, air dash, double jump, and jump back, and, if I remember correctly, everyone can use their forward punch as a half-decent anti-air. Once you're used to seeing one character doing it, it's the same for everyone else.
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John

Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby John » Mon Aug 07, 2017 1:18 am

The GOG sale on SNK fighting games ends tomorrow, so I have succumbed and purchased Samurai Shodown II. I mean, it was $2! Come on! Also, unless I am deeply confused, it is a relatively slow-paced, four-button, footsies-based game. My dirty little Street Fighter secret is that I almost never use more than four buttons anyway. I considered it a big step in my growth as a player when I started using medium attacks occasionally instead of using heavy attacks all the time. So I think this game will be My Speed. Time will tell if it's also My Thing.
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Charnel Mouse
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Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby Charnel Mouse » Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:15 pm

The Last Blade has a similar pace to SS.
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John

Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby John » Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:32 pm

Just a quick update to note that, ahem, every horrible thing that you may have heard about the Neo-Geo 25th Anniversary Collection is absolutely true. Maybe . . . maybe it works better in Windows. But let me tell you how it works (and doesn't work) in Linux. There's no controller support. It's keyboard-only. You can't re-map any of the keys. The diagram that tells you which keys do what is flat-out wrong in a couple of cases, which is just as well because some of the choices in that diagram were deeply stupid. Other than that, the game works. I guess.

The good news is that the Anniversary Collection is basically just a wrapper for MAME-compatible ROMs. Samurai Shodown 2 seems to work best with more recent versions of MAME. Trying to start the game from the MAME menu returns a missing file warning, but I was able to launch the game from the command line. (Judging by various forum posts I am not the only person to encounter this glitch.) Unfortunately, my SFA2 ROM doesn't work with newer versions of MAME, but I still have a functional PC port of that game to play when the mood strikes me.

All that aside, Samurai Shodown 2 seems pretty nifty so far. It's a bit of an adjustment from Street Fighter because it's harder to guess how far some characters' attacks will reach, but it's generally pretty similar. The special move motions seem to be mostly fireballs and dragon punches. I'm not wild about some of the sprite scaling when the characters are far apart but I guess I can expect only so much from a game from the early 90s. Last Blade might have been a better choice, graphically speaking, but I played SS2 in the arcades a couple of times when I was younger and I guess the nostalgia factor won me over.
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Charnel Mouse
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Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby Charnel Mouse » Tue Aug 08, 2017 1:37 am

John wrote:Just a quick update to note that, ahem, every horrible thing that you may have heard about the Neo-Geo 25th Anniversary Collection is absolutely true. Maybe . . . maybe it works better in Windows. But let me tell you how it works (and doesn't work) in Linux. There's no controller support. It's keyboard-only. You can't re-map any of the keys. The diagram that tells you which keys do what is flat-out wrong in a couple of cases, which is just as well because some of the choices in that diagram were deeply stupid. Other than that, the game works. I guess.

That sucks, sorry to hear that. I was worried after watching Super Bunny Hop cover them, but Last Blade and Twinkle Star Sprites seemed to turn out fine, I'm not sure why it would be inconsistent across games.
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John

Re: Fighting games for PC

Postby John » Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:26 am

Charnel Mouse wrote:That sucks, sorry to hear that. I was worried after watching Super Bunny Hop cover them, but Last Blade and Twinkle Star Sprites seemed to turn out fine, I'm not sure why it would be inconsistent across games.

I've been digging around in the game files, looking for a config file or some such thing that might allow me to enable controller support. I've had no luck, but I did discover a diagram that appears to show the button mapping for a Playstation pad. In Japanese. This has been kind of an adventure, you know? I'd be more upset but for the fact that I only spent $2. I think I'm going to try installing the game on a Windows computer next just to see what happens.

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