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My 2 Credit(s) - 3/20/09 Fri, Mar 20 2009 10:12

For the eleventy billionth week in a row, all I've really been playing is Left 4 Dead, although this time, a bit more on the PC. Thankfully, you won't have to read about how much I love that because I've got a topic on my mind and it has been eating at me like some kind of mind parasite.

A couple weeks ago Street Fighter 4 was released and the world rejoiced. I, however, greeted it with the same apathy I have for any fighting game. I've never really liked them and always found them to be kind of boring. I've certainly played my share of them starting with SFII on the SNES up to current day and with each of them, I get bored really quickly. After several conversations with Jessie and Bronson, I've managed to distill a few explanations as to why this might be and I present them to you henceforth.

The Arcade Experience
The first thing that came to mind is the fact that these games were born arcade machines. It's game design with quarters in mind in that these games were designed to get as much money from you as possible. To me, this is a particular hostile style of game design and I can taste it when I play. I'm not playing the game, it's playing me.

The Quality Experience
In my many attempts to explain to Bronson about why I was so anti-fighting game, it often came down to the fact that 99% of the time, the games go down exactly the same way. Two guys start a game, they mash some buttons, and about ninety seconds later one of them gets to tell the other guy, "Heh, I won that round. Wanna play again?"

Okay, so maybe that only describes a match between two low-level players. How about two guys who've played the crap out of the game and learned all the combos and strategies? That would go something like this: Two guys start a game, execute some combos and parries, and about ninety seconds later one of them gets to tell the other guy, "Heh, I won that round. Wanna play again?"

The high-level players would have practiced and trained their characters for hours (days? weeks? months?) to hone their skills and ultimately have the same gameplay experience. That seems like a tremendous waste of time to get to the same inevitable end that's equivalent to a coin flip.

Okay so I totally lost my train of thought. What it comes down to is that I've been looking for an objective reason for why this particular style of game doesn't interest but it ultimately comes down to personal preference and I hear that there is no accounting for that. This also falls apart because one of my favorite games is Geometry Wars and you don't really get any more arcadey than that.

I'd love to hear your thoughts on the matter or if I'm just the one being the asshole.

tags: [permalink] my 2 credits, my 2 credit(s), street fighter 4, sf4, sfiv, arcade games, fighting games,
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