With this edition of Mind Spill (and the next one to come) I’m going to be focusing on fighting games primarily because a lot of news happened for both Street Fighter V and Super Smash Bros. Some of the news was good, some of it bad, a lot of it I still don’t know what to make of, but today though, I’ll be focusing mainly on Street Fighter.
– Easily the best news to come out of this genre in recent months is the announcement of the character F.A.N.G for Street Fighter V. For someone like me, F.A.N.G is a godsend, saving this game’s roster from being a flock of generic and uninspired characters. Rashid minus his scouter just looks like a random Saudi Arabian dude with a cool backpack. Laura is basically just Christie from Tekken. Necalli is like an unholy mixture of Blanka and Akuma, two characters I never particularly liked. F.A.N.G is the only good newcomer, because he combines so much of what I’m looking for in a main. He’s a humourous character with a big personality, but at the same time he’s also a skilled master of Kung fu. The use of poison in his moveset also seems fairly interesting.
– A great character F.A.N.G reminds me of was my Street Fighter IV main Rufus. Both are Kung fu fighters, and both had some pretty goofy proportions (albeit towards opposite ends). Speaking of Rufus, I’d really love for him to be revealed as DLC for the phase 2 characters in 2016/17.
– Birdie’s another character I’m interested in for this game. I love his redesign, and his moveset looks like a ton of fun. Big problem with him though is his personality. Here we have an ex-criminal trying to find some footing in life, a potentially interesting backstory that gets completely ruined by his obsession with food. This guy only talks about his stomach for like, 95% of his interactions with other characters. It all comes down to what he can stuff down his disgusting pie-hole, with very little discussion on what actually makes him a compelling character.
– “Lair of the Four Kings”, the level shown in F.A.N.G’s trailer is easily the best Street Fighter stage I’ve ever seen. It just looks so damn cool, and the statues of the “Four Heavenly Kings of Shadaloo” (all of whom will be playable in the game) look super imposing. If it has a good song to go along with it, I’ll be picking it for most of my matches.
– One drawback to F.A.N.G for me as a player is his playstyle being that of a “Charge character” meaning that to do any of his specials, the player must hold the control stick in a certain direction for a second or two before thrusting forward and doing the move. Usually this is done for balance reasons, since some moves are so powerful that they would be completely overpowered if not for the charge requirement, and thankfully this seems to be the case with F.A.N.G, unfortunately my issue with charge moves come from them being uncomfortable to perform. I don’t like having to hold a certain direction for every special I perform because it takes my focus away from the fighting and it ruins my ability to make snap judgments when attacking. As someone who’s never mained a charge character before, I feel like my mental real-estate will partly be consumed by me worrying about how much I’ve charged at every moment of the match, and I’m certain it’ll get tedious. However F.A.N.G is just about the only character that’s cool enough to make me want to consider playing this way, so this might be a good thing in the end. If I learn the charge ropes now, I won’t have to worry so much about them in the future.
– Really loving the high amount of villains in SFV. Honestly, they almost make up for the lack of Rufus.
– Really hoping I can play as Urien in something other than his customary speedo. He’s a prime example of a cool character in a dumb outfit.
– The controversy of the R. Mika buttslap and the Cammy crotch shot is one of the most embarrassing chapters in the history of the Fighting Game Community (FGC). It’s really, really pathetic that so many people are freaking out about this. To those that don’t know, the camera has been adjusted in the latest builds of this game so that they cut out an ass slapping animation from R. Mika and a shot of Cammy’s crotch. This decision was made internally by Capcom (which I believe since there was absolutely no uproar about these facets to these characters prior to the change) but people are freaking out about it as if Capcom were bullied into doing it. They weren’t, it’s stupid that people care so much, and it’s evidence of my longstanding theory that most people who liberally use the phrase “censorship” have absolutely no clue of what it really means. My take is that it was pointless to adjust those characters since they seem constructed from the ground up to titillate hormonal teenagers and changing these minor things does nothing to change that, but the fact that they did adjust them shouldn’t be of serious concern to anyone. This is just the same juvenile “Gamer-Gate” or “Anti-PC” crowd we’ve seen before acting up in the FGC instead of the mainstream gaming community.
– I thought Street Fighter X Tekken was a truly great game that died in a tragic case of “too little, too late”. It had over 50 characters with unique playstyles, over 25 characters that were brand new to the franchise, an amazing soundtrack, cool looking stages, an absolute ton of fan service, and gameplay with a ton of features and a heavy emphasis on spacing and positioning. On top of all that, it had a genuinely fun 4 player mode, something you’d never expect to have in a Street Fighter game. Unfortunately it was brought down by an on-disc DLC controversy, and some significant gameplay issues that didn’t get addressed until 2013, although by then it was too late. Ah well, it was fun while it lasted, rest in peace SFxT.
– I feel like Seth was an underrated character. In SFIV, he served as the main boss, but unlike most of them, he actually had an interesting character arc of his own. Ya he was evil, but he was created to be nothing more than spare body for M. Bison, but he defied that by developing a mind and ambitions of his own and ended up taking control of the remains of Shadaloo to become a legitimate threat in his own right. He had a great theme, an amazing voice actor, a very fun moveset to watch (he borrows a bunch of classic franchise attacks and puts his own spin on them), and a quality story. His reaction to being called “#15” went to a more dramatic place than I thought possible in a Street Fighter game.
– I hope to God El Fuerte never sees the light of day ever again.
– I still think this game should never have been a Play Station 4 exclusive. I don’t think the Xbox One is a better console, but history shows that fighting games generally run better on Microsoft consoles, and I’m a lot more comfortable controlling with the Xbox controller than I am with the Play Station one, at least in the case of fighting games.
– To end things, I’ll leave off with a video from Pete Holmes that raises a lot of interesting concerns about Dhalsim:
Quote of the Day:
“Two minutes… I’ll finish you, in two minutes.”
– F.A.N.G, Street Fighter V.