By FluxWaveZ 70 Comments
Anytime a new fighting game that I'm interested in is about to be released, one of the most important questions I find myself faced with—and I'm sure I'm not alone in this—is who the character I'm going to main is.
Usually, after a fair amount of deliberation, I end up maining a character based on aesthetic alone and that character is typically a main antagonist. The first reason I do this is because, well, I like bad guys more than other characters and liking the character you play as is a good motivator to improve, in my opinion. However, a second reason I think I do this is because I get frustrated when I have to think about "which character fits my playstyle the most" and I just resign to what I'm familiar with.
The problem lies in the fact that I don't know what my "playstyle" is. Oftentimes, I'll try all of the characters in a game's roster and not really feel any character that I immediately feel good playing as, so I'll pick an antagonist I like and tell myself that I'll simply adapt to the primary playstyle of that character, which usually ends up being the case.
What are your methods of finding the character that is right for you?
Trying to figure out a way to easily determine my type of fighting game playstyle and how I could easily determine a character I could naturally adapt to instead of struggle to learn, I created this
pseudopsychology based 100% accurate quiz based on rigorous study and scientifically obtained data based on eight different fighting game character playstyles I made up:
All-around characters have the tools to deal with any situation they find themselves in, making them the most balanced kinds of fighters, though they might not excel in any one area.
Examples: Ryu, Ken (SF); Yu (P4A); Scorpion, Sub-Zero (MK); Terry Bogard (KoF)
The goal of rushdown characters is to constantly be in the opponent's face, never give them any breathing room and to always be on the offense. They are weakest when when distanced from the opponent, but are scary when up close with high damage output and mix-ups.
Examples: Cammy, Fei Long (SF); Chie (P4A); Iori (KoF)
Grapplers are typically big and very slow, oftentimes with more health than the average to make up for it. Their goal is to patiently approach the opponent in order to deal very high damaging attacks, primarily in the form of command throws.
Examples: Zangief, Hakan (SF); Cerebella (SG); Kanji (P4A); Tager (BB)
Zoning characters typically have low health, but they make up for it with their ability to control space. They are strongest when distanced from their opponent and will attempt to keep them at bay with a variety of projectiles and traps.
Examples: Dhalsim (SF); Dormammu (MvC3); Yukiko (P4A)
Tricky characters excel in high mobility, capitalizing on their movement to confuse opponents through feints, teleportation or attacking in multiple directions simultaneously. Usually use a mix of long-range and close-range attacks and they might have a random element to them.
Examples: Faust (GG); Arakune (BB); Teddie (P4A)
Puppet characters are a special type of fighting game character which involve controlling two separate entities at once to overwhelm the opponent by attacking in multiple different angles simultaneously. These characters usually require more multitasking than other characters.
Examples: Carl (BB); Shadow Labrys (P4A); Eddie (GG)
Stance change characters are characters that involve changing stances or "modes" depending on the situation they find themselves in. These characters are usually execution heavy and require thinking ahead to determine when the best times to switch modes are in the heat of battle.
Examples: Aigis (P4A); Gen (SF); Amaterasu (MvC3)
Turtle characters are characters that rely on their defense being stronger than the opponent's offense. Their game plan revolves around punishing opponent's mistakes, whether it's by running away with high mobility in order to frustrate the opponent, by countering the opponent's attacks or via other means.
Examples: Guile (SF), Venom (GG), S-Kill (Divekick)
Aside from "Tricky" (which I practically made up, though I personally think it's valid), all of them are recognized character playstyles, though they might not be categorized in the way I did and these descriptions are very general since there can be several sub-categories to certain playstyles.
Fighting game characters are generally designed to be optimally played in a specific way that fits the above playstyles, but each person still applies their own approach and personal style to their character of choice, meaning that the quiz isn't to determine how a player should play a fighting game, but which kind of character they might enjoy or find success playing as the most.
So after creating this 100% accurate quiz on FG character playstyles, I took things one step further by applying the completely logical process of the Hunter X Hunter Nen diagram to an individual's inherent fighting game character playstyle, which resulted in the following:
I created the above diagram on a whim
and it means nothing. Basically applying HxH's Nen theory directly to fighting game playstyles, the concept is that one has the potential to be 100% efficient playing as a character of their inherent FG character playstyle (i.e. the one obtained in the quiz), 80% efficient with playstyles adjacent to one's primary one, and so on before finally having a max. potential of being 20% efficient with a playstyle opposite to their primary one.
Using Rushdown as one's primary playstyle in the above chart, the person has the potential to be 100% efficient with any rushdown based character, 80% with an All-around or Grappler character and 20% efficient with a Turtle character.
Oftentimes a character will actually belong to several playstyles (i.e. hybrids), so if a character would be a combination of Tricky and Turtle like Yosuke in Persona 4 Arena, a Rushdown character player's max. efficiency potential with Yosuke would be 40% (60% + 20% divided by 2).
The above is total hogwash; please don't take it seriously. But it was fun to come up with and it gave me certain things to think about as, honestly, determining which character to main in a fighting game can be fun initially when you get to try out all of the characters and see which one fits you best, but it can end up frustrating when you just can't commit to one character or another.