Fighting games are a damn tough genre to break into, so much to learn from characters and combo systems to the small intricate details of each title. It can all be a bit overwhelming so I am here to help you to get gud at fighting games!
This will be a blanket guide to playing fighting games at an intermediate level. The things I will detail in this guide apply to all fighting games so you can use this in every game you play.
So let’s jump in!
1: Learning your style
The first part of getting good in any fighting game is to find your play style. To start with it is a good idea to move around the roster to discover what character suits your play style as each characters tend to fall into specific archetypes which I will detail below:
Turtle: The turtle is a super defensive play style, if you prefer to play conservatively taking few risks waiting for your opponent to make mistakes, The Turtle is a very slow play style which some players find boring, be sure you have the patience to sit back and wait.
Rushdown: Rushdown is a hyper aggressive play style, if you like to keep in your opponent’s face giving them little time to breathe. You need to be able to keep on top of an opponent and keep them within close range to keep them from establishing any breathing room.
Zoner: Zoner is a mixture between Rushdown and Turtle. This play style is the most balanced and is usually the most beginner friendly, Zoner characters tend to excel at fireball attacks to keep opponents locked into a specific range.
Grappler: The up close and personal high damage powerhouse. The grappler requires you to stay up close and personal. This play style is rather challenging to begin with because it requires the player to have a deeper knowledge of the character. To get your damage you need to keep up in an opponent’s face and learn the best set ups to guarantee grabs.
2: Figure out your strengths and weaknesses as a player
So you have played a little bit, what do you do good and what do you do bad? Finding out where you excel is important as you know where to invest a lot of your main game plan but discovering your weaknesses is more important. If you can figure out the holes in your game you can patch them up and it will ultimately make you a better player. There are benefits as you may have a similar weakness to other players, making it easier to spot and to take victory when you know your way around it.
3: Watch pro players who use your character
Watch any footage of professional players using characters that you yourself are currently playing. Watching pro-players will open the door to new set ups, new ways to use a character and even new combos. Learning these new strategies can help you better understand your character and also give you an edge.
4: Figure out how to start your combos
So combos are the essential thing you need to learn and every game does them differently. In Street Fighter it is link combos, which rely on you hitting buttons in a tight space of time to link attacks together. Mortal Kombat and Tekken focus on button strings to launch enemies into the air and juggle them. So that is your first port of call, to figure out how it works, then you need to work on how to start combos.
Find the moves you can throw out which can allow you to start your combo’s. Some attacks have special priorities, such as being able to link into special moves, or having enough hit stun to allow you to hit another attack. Mess around and find out the best attacks to lead into your combo’s.
5: Spend time in practice learning how to get the maximum damage off of your combo opener
So you know now how to do combo’s, now you need to figure out how to maximize the damage! You know how to lead into your combos but now you need to learn how to get the max damage. Remember that long combos do not always mean max damage, Shorter combos can often lead to higher damage. Ending combos is important, do not just look at damage when it comes to finishing combos, look at where it puts you, if you need your opponent away from you, try and end combos that knock opponents away, try to tailor combo enders to your playstyles so you can always stay in control of the match.
6: Learn your match ups
This is really important! Learning your style is very important but you also need to know how to counter act others. Learning the ranges of when to attack is pivotal, if you play rushdown you need to know how to fight against a turtle, if you a grappler you need to work out how to get around fireball zoning. Learning how to alter your play style to fit a certain match-up is integral to getting better!
7: Don’t be salty
This is the single most important piece of advice. Do not be salty, what do I mean by that? Well do not get angry about losing, losing inevitably will happen, it happens to everyone. It is a 1v1 game someone has to lose. So don’t get mad when you do, losses are more important than wins, most modern consoles have a capture device, whenever you lose a match and you do feel that salt burning up, go back and check the tapes. Pin-point why you lost and how to improve it next time.
Pretty lengthy and technical read, hope you were able to keep with it, if this advice works for you don’t be afraid to tell us all about we love to hear your feedback! Also any questions don’t be afraid to ask us about it, we might be able to help you graduate from scrub school!