It has come to my attention that the fighting game genre, in general has been adopting some very bad mechanics, and character rosters that cater to the worst sorts of players. I firmly believe that fighting game developers have become so desperate for money that they are reaching out to the "CoD" community with fully exploitable features intact for the sole purpose of appeasing such gamer types. There's simply no other viable explanation. Take the latest release of "BlazBlue: Chrono Phantasma", for example. The game is so broken in structure that it's damn near impossible to get into a fair fight. In the game the blocking, and recover mechanics are so severely limited, because of a special meter that it leaves you open to infinite attack strings with no way out. The character roster in BBCP is another thing that does the series a huge disservice. Most of the characters have exploitable projectiles, or have zoning attacks that make the "in & out" tomfoolery a piece of cake. Characters like "Izayoi", and "Arakune" who have the ability to phase in, and out of existence make landing combos, or hits a trying ordeal, especially when the gamer using them is playing a heavy keep away game.
On the other end of the spectrum you have characters like "Yuuki Terumi", "Jin Kisaragi", "Kokonoe", and "Platinum" who can immobilize you with certain projectiles while they follow up with grabs/throws, and dish out combo strings in order to keep you in an unavoidable loop of damage. Rinse, and repeat. To say that BBCP was a fair fighter would be a lie. The game most definitely caters to the 'CoD' community with it's over abundance of exploitable zoning, and projectile heavy characters. To make matters worse there are players out there with bootleg ISO copies of the game with mods in place that guarantees a win with each, and every match. If you don't believe me look it up.
Today while playing in the special Japanese BBCP lobby I encountered this gamer who got two perfect wins against me in a row. I know for certain I'm not that salty. I would at least have hit him once if it weren't for his infinite combos which I could not break free from. I know how BBCP works, and I have won several games online using Azrael. For those of you who don't know who Azrael is he's the only character without a barrage of projectiles, or zoning attacks. You have to get up close, and personal with Azrael if you want to do enough damage to win. The fact that I beat a tryhard "Yuuki Terumi" player with Azrael further proves that I'm not "Salty".
Aside from the latest BlazBlue, other fighters such as "Tekken Revolution', and the upcoming 'Ultra Street Fighter IV' have gone, and are going the same route. The unbalanced character rosters, exploits, and in-game mechanics cater to the same "CoD" community as BBCP. While I'm not going to go into great detail about them all you (as a developer) need to know is that there's a right, and wrong way to build a fighting game roster. This includes some Do's, and Don'ts. In 2D fighters such as Street Fighter, for example there are some things that can help to keep the roster balanced, and "CoD" community free. For one thing you do not put in more zoning characters than hand-to-hand fighters in your roster unless you want the scum of online to flock to your game. Secondly do not give a single character multiple projectile options, or unavoidable/spammable projectiles. Also avoid at all costs the long reach Dhalsim attacks unless you slow down the character like Dhalsim. All you BBCP 'Amane Nishiki' players know exactly what I'm talking about.
When it comes to 3D fighters there are also some in-game mechanic applications/features to avoid. First, and foremost projectiles should NOT be a part of any 3D fighter. Period. Having to dodge, and weave about limits reaction times, and causes projectile dodging to be a damn near impossibility. Case in point, "Tekken Revolution" (Devil Kazuya vs Anybody). Secondly do not include flying, teleporting, or Capoeira style fighters. It's not a fair fight unless every character in the roster can break dance, fly like MF'ing Superman, or zone the !@#$% out of opposing characters. A roster in any fighting game, whether it's 2D, or 3D should be balanced throughout. Either make all characters zoning/projectile heavy, or the opposite. Do not make 3/4 of the roster zoning, and the rest melee, or vice-versa. The roster should also collectively offer plenty ways to get in for a hit as well as a way to get out of striking distance without being unfairly punished for each individual character. None of this screen filling projectile BS, or brick wall defenses should be commonplace in a fighting game.
Thirdly, do not allow infinite combo loops, or exploitable attack strings to be a part of your game. If you find an instance of such in your fighter either patch the game, or nerf the !@#$% out of the character that is able to perform said infinite. In doing so it will make players turn from the easy exploits of the character in question, and will have them searching for another character to use. On top of that if they really like the character despite of the nerf then they'll be forced to learn to play legit. Playing legit is a winner for everyone involved in that it makes the players who fight fair, or who are looking for a fair fight want to return to the game. No one likes a game where winning is an impossibility, and where the only gamers playing it are the scum of online. Lastly, DO NOT ATTRACT THE ATTENTION OF THE CoD COMMUNITY!!! If you do you will forsake all that your game stood for as well as those who turned to it for a proper online fight. I don't care if the game gets you a few extra bucks by attracting CoD players, cause in the long run it will hurt your franchise more than it will benefit it. Your game will become synonymous with the worst of online gaming experiences, and players will avoid each new game released. I promise you this.
I think I'm gonna close this open letter on that note. If you are a fighting game developer, or even a fighting game enthusiast feel free to chime in with your comments. That is what this open letter is for anyways. I do have to warn you though. If you try to troll me, or spam this article your comment will never see the light of day. I do, after all monitor each, and every comment that comes in.
CoD Community (Definition): "Delinquent undisciplined children, and adults who hack, mod, exploit, and troll in games in order to make a name for themselves online. See 'Trolls', 'SuK', 'Whiteboy7thst' ..."
Your Last Samurai,
Brad C. (OtakuDante)