Capcom Wants to Make Accessible Fighting Games

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Don't forget. To make something more accessible is a euphemism for dumbing down.

Remember when games challenged players to learn how to play? Remember when games were for smart and patient people, and not retards? Good times.

But seriously? How can you dumb down a fighting game? Is this what Capcom thinks of it's fanbase? That they're just a bunch of retards so they need to find a way to dumb down even their fighting games? That's insulting. They already killed every other franchise they have. What a bunch of morons.

after button smash fighting, now we will get buttonn smash cuddling.

they are already casual friendly!
you dont have to have skill anymore.

Dreiko:
Blazblue DID have that tutorial mode, it taught you everything including how to walk forward.

Know what happened? People complained that there was too much thrown at them and that there was too much reading.

They probably raged at Rachel's barrage if insults.
But I'd have to say that Capcom is playing catch-up with regards to getting new players in the door. I picked up Skullgirls because I found trying to figure out how to not mash through Capcom's games entirely arcane; now I know important things like poking and punishing.

Also, remember the hand-to-hand fight scenes in Team America: World Police? That's how I imagine button bashing should look like.

Wow. So much Capcom hate.

Anywho, I watched the EVO championships and you know what? Those top-level players STILL got C- and D-rankings through the in-game results. If they can't get an 'A' or an 'S', then what hope do I have? And how are these rankings determined anyway?

I agree with an above commenter. They could make a game with just a few new characters, no super bar, no tacked on complexity -- I guess that would just be basically Street Fighter II all over again. But that game really introduced us all to modern fighting games in the explanatory sense.

At its core a fighting game is about using the right move at the right time, but if a tutorial never points out the properties of a move and why and when it should be employed, then the player hasn't really learned what they need to know.

I play Magic: the Gathering, and I've found that the newest Duels of the Planeswalkers' Encounter matches (the ones where the computer does the same thing every time) can instruct players a lot better than random stuff happening randomly. By removing the random element of the opponents' actions, the player is given an opportunity to focus on just his own deck. This is not nearly as unfun as it might sound, so I think a guided, non-reactive/non-random opponent would be a better sparring partner than the dolls available now.

Also a card-game nugget: the Arc System of card games (Hercules, Xena, others) played a lot like Magic (same company), but they were successfully simplified in that they removed as much unnecessary complexity as possible. It didn't replace Magic, and it didn't ruin Magic. My point is that this isn't the first time something complex has been reimagined in a simpler way. I figure it'll be NECESSARY to keep new players picking up controllers. Because without new players, the genre will just die (again).

Since when did it become difficult to explain the base mechanics you spent two years designing? Urgh, I don't care. Since the abortion that was Tekken 6 I've sworn myself off of fighting games, Pes 4: Arena and Tekken Tag 2 might change all of that, and I'm hopeful of that, but looking at the industry leaves me just a tad apprehensive.
Fighting games just need a half-way decent tutorial that leaves you with an accurate message like "this is what you need to know to play the game, it's up to you now to practice and develop the skill to play WELL".

Oh, and as a side note, Capcom: SUCK THE DARKEST PART OF MY PEARLY WHITE ASS!

I don't know if others in the series had it, but virtua fighter 4: evolution had a pretty sweet training mode that led you in steps from basic pokes and blocking up through cancelling reverses while sidestepping up and just crazy complicated stuff. I felt this was fantastic because you could spend a little time in this mode and learn some new tricks, then take them out to the game in general and come back for more when you had them mastered.

I liked the simple mode in MvC3 because it was newbie friendly and allowed you to play to a competent level but with a limited moveset. I completely suck at fighting games but that game made me feel like I could actually beat someone.

I loved the way positioning, rhythm and reflexes was the focus in super smash brothers instead of practicing stupid easily fuck-upable "quartercircle+halfcircle+b+b+a" moves that are hard to pull off on a 360 controller anyway (!) until it's in your muscle memory so that you can actually start playing the game.
In ssb, once you got the controls figured out, you could just do all the moves with all the characters and only had to figure out how and when to use them instead of checking a retardedly long movelist to "learn how to play as ___".

This kind of game design is archaic and difficult for all the wrong reasons if there ever were any.
In every other genre, shitty controls get denunciated and mocked.
I never understood how fighting games always got a free pass in that department.

Bad controls don't make horror games scarier, they also are not "the point" of fighting games, all they do is put a needlessly high entry barrier around the game and make it tedious to play.

There is no excuse for bad controls.

Overseer76:

I agree with an above commenter. They could make a game with just a few new characters, no super bar, no tacked on complexity -- I guess that would just be basically Street Fighter II all over again. But that game really introduced us all to modern fighting games in the explanatory sense.

At its core a fighting game is about using the right move at the right time, but if a tutorial never points out the properties of a move and why and when it should be employed, then the player hasn't really learned what they need to know.

I was hoping someone would make the Street Fighter II connection. That was pretty much what I was thinking of while creating that list. Basically a Street Fighter II-style game with no circular or charge inputs. And more game modes.

Need to keep the six button layout, though.

It is funny to hear this when Capcom had already made at least two quite good user friendly fighting games.

Power Stone 2 was a glorious 3D smash brothers with ever changing stages weapons, chaos and simple commands.

Tech Romancer was a 2.5 mecha, cool as hell, fighting game. Most complicated command? Tap back, towards and the two attack buttons. Also story mode with voice acting between all battles.

Sadly it was only for Dreamcast.

TizzytheTormentor:
Not for me Crapcom! I'll be busy with Persona 4 Arena! You have already pissed on my loyalty to you, so until you localize Ace Attorney: Investigations 2 and Professor Layton Vs Ace Attorney, we have nothing to discuss...

AA VS PL is coming over. It's just level 5 localizing it.

But still, AAI2 or no money from me, Capcom,.

Being accessible dosent necessarily mean simple (I hope Capcom realises this). They need to work on accessibility though, the barrier entry is really really low like most games but if you want to evolve it takes a lot more its not just practice you have to actually be aware of what mechanics are at play and how they interact but usually the game dosent tell you this because its a big secret of something. Some do better such as Virtua Fighter 4 which actually give you frame data but most tutorials tell you bugger all about links (let alone the timing for them) what moves actually do link, Combo scaling, move buffering, plinking, pianoing etc and all the other crap you never hear about any of this.

Instead we get a tutorial move that goes like this press right to go right left to go left up to jump and down to crouch (sticking to 2d here) yeah well no shit seriously who couldnt figure that out.

Next blocking press back to block mid high down and back to block low mid er ok pretty simple.

Then you get special moves QCF p ok not to hard then a few trials later its a massive bloody long list that dosent even fit on screen and/or require lots of 1/2 frame links to do as well as other hidden factors like the move has to be performed using the shortcut techniques you are never told in order to come out on time and connect as well as constant pushing forward between each move (which it dosent show) so you stay in range or some shit.

In short it goes from piss easy to 1000mph in a few minutes, Its not just Capcom though I really love fighting games but they dont tell you fuck all how to do their more advanced stuff they just leave that to the community a bit of transparency on how the game works would be a bit more helpful and I dont know maybe some rhythm action thing for link combos that you can make up to help you get the timing down in training/trial mode and can actually see why the hell your inputs arent working.

Skullgirls and Blazblue explained the basics well but again struggled taking players beyond that and please if you dont know pushing right makes you move right I gather you have never played a 2D game before. I hear VF4 Evolution had a great tutorial mode but I have unfortunately never had the chance to play it although its very different to Capcoms fighters anyway.

Also less buttons does not necessarily mean more accessibility or dumbing down take the aforementioned VF series a 3 button fighter and not exactly the simplest fighter around and actually not overly accessible either im afraid you can button mash with a few characters but try it with someone like Akira and you will struggle to get him to do anything much. Also any good fighter (most out now) there is very high probability you will lose if you button mash against anyone who is even slightly proficient sure you can always get lucky but odds are not in your favour.

Anyway make them accessible by all means in fact please do but the way to do that is to properly educate people not dumb them down with crappy fighting systems and abilities otherwise the title will be abandoned by the actual fighting game community as well as the casuals and it will die. Oh if they stopped their shitty DLC practices I think they would have more good will sent their way as well, they complain about cannibalization damaging SF X Tekkens sales but I think it was firstly down to the revelation of all the locked on disc DLC there, then there was of course the broken mechanics, the pay to win gem system (accessibility man hey dont want to do these trials well heres a gem you can purchase to make it do it for you, seriously what is the point in that you learn naff all) such as ultimate defense gem (ok not quite pay to win, pay to have a huge advantage) and everyone expected them to release a new one down the line anyway so why shell out now just wait a bit. It didnt help that it was pretty boring to watch as well for the most part.

Anyway Capcom get that tutorial fixed or in place dont put in a brickwall last boss (and that goes for almost every fighting game these are not fun to fight for the most part) and then release Darkstalkers 4 with no DLC and if it needs to be patched (even after extensive playtesting) do it for free then im sure many people would be happy and I reckon Darkstalkers could draw in new players as well as its got quite a nice aesthetic and concept.

Damn that was long didnt mean to rant on so much ok thats enough for now.

^

Noooo, if they release a new Darkstalkers it won't have sprites....I don't wanna see another thing 3D-fied. >_<

They should just update DS3 and maybe rebalance it a bit...like how GG is doing with accent core + R.

Capcom could get rid of those fiddly control inputs and arcane knowledge, but it wouldn't solve the problem. The problem is a fundamental problem that also applies to the RTS genre. It's 1 on 1.

Most gamers don't like to lose. Given a pool of players, there will always be some who are the worst and they will lose all the time at 1 on 1 games. Then they will quit. This process will continue until you're left with the ones that are truly determined. These players will all be far too good for a new or casual gamer to stand a chance.

Popular multiplayer games, like COD etc, offer team based modes where bad players can suck in every way but their team can still win. They may even capture the flag a few times if better players are there to escort them.

Basically, bad players must be able to win for a game to be successful.

There are a few remedies.

1) Make the game with more than two fighters. Anyone remember International Karate Plus? That had three fighters, although only two were ever human. There's nothing wrong with allowing 1 on 1, but making it the default/only mode makes it inaccessable.

2) Introduce a random element significant enough to frequently decide the winner. This is what Magic the Gathering does. This allows bad players to win sometimes. It also allows them to blame their losses on bad luck.

3) Introduce a handicap system and make it the default mode of play for at least the low ranked players online. The chinese board game Go has this. I could play the best player in the world (and there are some very good players) and still have a 50% chance of winning if the handicaps are correctly calculated. Go is probably the oldest board game that is still popular. Maybe a fighting game with a handicap system would last too.

I think SFxT did have a team mode. You could play and team up each super-good person with a scrub and each of them would control one character.

It...didn't seem to do much in terms of popularity..and outside of ultra-casual settings no pro would want to really be dragged down so much while the scrubs would end up feeling useless since, it still being 1v1, they'd see their team-mate do all the work while they mashed buttons for 3 seconds before tagging out to not die. :P

cursedseishi:

Svensson will have his way alright, but only if he serves as a sock puppet for the higher ups that really matter in Capcom. Which, in short, means his way is nothing.

Took the words out of my mouth.
Especially on the MegaMan Legends 3 bit.

Of course, Capcom's "Giveth, taketh away" attitude is precisely why I stopped paying them any mind at all. They want to make a new game series? Fine. What the fuck is stopping them?

Demographic backlash?

There is nothing wrong with most tutorials as even if you know all the relevant data, you still need to practice enough to make it reactionary. Things like invincibility frames and what-not cannot be taught, they can be learned and practiced but having a tutorial mode tell you things like frame advantage and everything is ridiculous. I'd say Arc Systems is doing tutorials/training well enough. First they did it BlazBlue, that is if you got the first print. The game came with a DVD that goes over every character and explains mechanics and such. Then when their "challenges" came in, they weren't uselessly retarded like Street Fighter IV's were. Every combo in the challenge mode was relevant in actual gameplay and while it may not cover every possible combo, it gives a strong base for people to practice

Bad Jim:
... 2) Introduce a random element significant enough to frequently decide the winner. This is what Magic the Gathering does. This allows bad players to win sometimes. It also allows them to blame their losses on bad luck.

Absolutely not, having a "random element" that can be significant enough to decide the winner is bullshit; especially since most fighting games is a test of skill via one on one. There are plenty of documented come from behind wins and that's skill, having some bull-shit whatever the fuck happen and force a loss isn't good design... ... ... it's something Capcom would do.

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