No More Ads

August 25th, 2013 17 comments

Last night i removed all advertisements from Sonic Hurricane. They were an ugly eyesore and never made any money anyway. The only reason it took me so long is because i liked using them to break up my massive walls of text without having to search for a relevant picture.

Luckily i figured out how to make ComboVid banners of the exact same size and placement, which load much faster and aren’t nearly as creepy. Sonic Hurricane is now 100% profit-free! (Not that i ever managed to break even in the first place.)

In the process of removing all embedded ads from individual articles, i couldn’t help but notice that some of my old writing is pretty damn weird. Um, sorry about that y’all.

You know, it’s not that i’m trying to sound smart or take myself too seriously. I’m just not that good a writer. I get bored and start trying to find new words i’ve never used before, or substituting longer/shorter words to even out paragraph shapes. Also i like playing around with new grammar tech; occasionally bending the rules for fun. Unfortunately sometimes it ends up sounding inordinately abstruse.

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Questions I Have No Business Asking, No. 2

July 16th, 2013 17 comments

Every single fighting game in the Evo2k13 lineup requires an immense time committment! Playing SF4 or MvC3 simply isn’t enjoyable if you can’t perform ultras or basic combos at will. For a newcomer, that’s already days or weeks of up-front practice.

Then trying to play against human opponents multiplies that minimum committment tenfold. Playing competitively in tournaments multiplies it a thousandfold! Even casually watching tutorials and tournament streams takes up entire evenings.

Considering how much time it costs, what is it about the fighting game community that keeps you connected and invested? Also, what’s your biggest concern/fear about where the community might be headed?

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PASBR Patch 1.10 Balance Changes

March 19th, 2013 438 comments

Version 1.10 of PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale represents a comprehensive tuning patch that affects every character on the roster. Our goal was to identify the biggest imbalances in the game and carefully address them without diluting any fighter’s intended combat persona.

The update went live this afternoon, alongside the release of DLC characters Zeus and Isaac and the new Graveyard level. Detailed patch notes have already been posted online earlier in the week. I’m mirroring the complete verified list here, because frankly i’m proud of these changes and i hope the fighting game community embraces them.

    General Changes
• AP burst victims in online matches no longer erroneously receive the 30 AP bonus.
• Blocking another attack while in block stun reaction no longer zeroes out X velocity.
• Characters can no longer block or dodge for 5 frames after landing during an air attack.
• Characters can not perform supers until frame 12 after landing during an air attack.
• Characters now remain grounded for the first 10 frames of jumping (previously 9 for Kat, Ratchet, Sackboy, Sly Cooper, and Spike).

    Big Daddy
• Air F+Triangle has 11 additional frames of startup.
• Air D+Square now gains 20 AP (previously 10), and victim’s reaction is reduced by 3 frames.
• Level 1 Super now causes an initial stagger reaction on frame 36.
• Level 2 Super’s Triangle attacks are sped up.
• Level 3 Super attacks become active 3 frames sooner and recover 6 frames earlier.
• Level 3 Super attack volumes have been adjusted to be more centered around Big Daddy.
• Level 3 Super victims swim faster and no longer get stuck upon entering Infinite Avoidance.

    Cole MacGrath
F+Square -> Square hit volume enlarged to hit small characters more consistently.
• Neutral Triangle firing rate has been sped up by 4 frames (moved to its recovery instead).
• Ground neutral Circle recovery has been reduced to 20 frames (previously 28).
• Level 3 Super tornado movement speed has been increased.

Read more…

Categories: Game Design, Strategy Tags:

PASBR Promising Combo Fragments

January 29th, 2013 10 comments

For those you interested in making elaborate month-three combovids for PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale, here’s a list of naunaces that may be worth exploring.

    Platform Ledge Sweep
The reaction type caused by Kratos’ D+Square actually animates beyond the time it takes to reach the ground. Sweeping an opponent off a platform ledge gives you a few extra frames to juggle them before they air tech. I’m sure someone can find a clever use for this bit of minutia!

    Post-Stagger Meaty Setups
Heavy stagger reactions tend to force opponents low to the ground – stagger kneel (caused by Sweet Tooth’s j.Square) and stagger drop (caused by Sir Daniel’s j.F+Square). Therefore both can serve as convenient mid-combo meaty setups for high attacks and projectiles.

    Ceiling Bounce Followups
On stages with solid ceilings such as Dojo and Invasion, it’s possible to launch an opponent into a sort of ceiling splat reaction, providing an added followup opportunity as they peel off the ceiling. Certain characters can even add extra eject attacks to their air combos.

    Multi-Victim Combos
Since multi-victim combos yield diminishing returns for AP accrual, it takes a few extra hits for additional opponents to reach the infinite avoidance limit. As such, it’s possible to perform longer combos against secondary and tertiary victims.

Read more…

Categories: Technical Tags:

Game Spotlight: FGC Indie Projects of 2012

December 31st, 2012 3 comments

Over the past year, the fighting game community has seen several promising independent game projects revealed by its own members. These extremely talented groups have invested their own time and resources into developing games that draw upon the FGC’s language and culture, with core gameplay mechanics heavily inspired by classic fighting game conventions. I want to highlight a few of these titles, because i think this is a very interesting trend.

Super Comboman is a side-scrolling beat-’em-up featuring a customizable combat system based on unlocking and arranging special abilities, in the form of colorful stickers. The story follows an energetic islander named Struggles, as he takes on odd jobs to support his little brother. (Un)fortunately he tends to get carried away with practicing his spectacular combos, and usually ends up destroying everything in sight! Apparently this project has been in development at Interabang Entertainment for over 1½ years. They’re currently putting the finishing touches on the game, so it’s already available for pre-order through their website.

Señor Footsies is a simplified 2D fighting game by Luke Esquivel, featuring two identical characters with very limited movesets. They can walk back and forth, perform a quick low kick, commit to a longer range sweep with more recovery, or build meter to use a pistol. Whoever lands the first kick wins the round, so the entire match revolves around cautious mobility, space control, and – you guessed it, footsies. What began with hand-drawn sprites has evolved into 3D models and a complete visual overhaul, but no release date has been set.

Street Sweeper is another minimalist fighting game built around a streamlined version of traditional footsies, developed by Robin Ramirez. The goal of the match is to connect a low roundhouse sweep, by using a quick high kick as bait, performing a well-timed parry, or simply outmaneuvering the opponent. There’s a free playable PC version available for download, including a second character recently added to the mix – and many more on the way. The character sprites and backgrounds are adapted from SNK’s various Neo Geo Pocket fighters.

Lastly, i’m sure everyone in the FGC has heard of Divekick since it was featured at MWC2012 and Evo2k12. The combat system revolves around the somewhat polarizing fighting game concept of divekicks, recently popularized by SF4′s Rufus and MvC3′s Doctor Doom. It was developed by One True Game Studios and successfully funded via Kickstarter, before picking up a publisher and refunding everyone’s donations. A release date hasn’t been announced yet, but i’m sure we’ll be hearing more details soon!

Categories: Spotlights Tags: