My Critique


#1

The Good

1 button moves:
Loved it in Rising Thunder, love it in this, wish there were more fighting games that did this.

Interesting characters:
Some cool movesets, I like them, surprising amount of variety for specials mapped to 2 buttons.

(Some) Good visual feedback:
I like that armoured moves are blue and invincible are white.
OTG-able state is a bit hard to see at times.

Menu system:
Flows really well, very few clicks to get into a quick match, don’t have to go into a stupid menu and hit 6 buttons, ending with an obscure “Apply”, just to set my online character.

Movelist:
Having a single screen movelist is the kind of idea that makes me wonder why other games don’t do this (Guilty Gear is forgiven for not doing this.)

One suggestion: Please consider adding a “more info” type mode where you can select individual moves and find out more properties about them, I feel like that would be a nice middle ground between having basic move description to get you going and not having to leave the game to find out the complexities of a move.

The Not So Good

Graphics:
They are okay, not terrible, but they feel a bit cheap. Shader feels a bit out-of-the-boxy.

Models:
Midori looks really weird. I get that he’s meant to be bigger in stature, but something isn’t right about his proportions and the way he moves or stands. He’s unsettling to look at.
I’m glad Valerie (seemingly) stopped smiling with her teeth, that was not a good smile.

Online:
If this game had a bigger online player base, my opinion might be better as I would be paired with people closer, but so far I find it a bit lacking.
Other fighting games I’ve played perform better even when the opponent is as far/or further away than these ones are.

If the game play was fairly straight forward, this wouldn’t be a big deal, but the timing for reacting to and punishing things in this game is surprisingly tight at times for the pacing the game has otherwise.
I like that there are crossup moves etc. but when a connection is orange or lower (or flickering between orange and green), these moves can become more frustrating to deal with than they are intended to be.

Hitboxes:
This game has some janky hitboxes.
I am against hitboxes that don’t make sense with the animation.
There are various moves in this game where the hitboxes just leave me wondering why something worked.
I’m not talking about Valerie’s jB, I understand that’s made to be a tricky move, but others like Rook’s fA just seem silly.
Why does Geiger’s jC cross up? It doesn’t look like something that should cross up with the animation it has.
There are other moves where I somehow jump into a hitbox that looked like it should have disappeared half a second ago.

Frame data:
This is incredibly subjective, but some moves in this game feel like they should be punishable, but either I’m timing it really badly or they are safe at most distances (online might play a part).
Sometimes the plus frames seem a bit too generous, but again, it’s too subjective for me to do anything other than pout and say I think it should be different.

Throws:
This one is probably one of my biggest and also one of the surprises for me.
I have been following along with the games development and I thought the Yomi counter system sounded really fun.
I tried the game out during the Fig campaign and realised that I wasn’t super keen on having f/bA as the throw button because the moves you get from f/bA generally have quite slow startup, so it’s not good when you incorrectly space your throw (maybe that’s the point, either way, it’s not what I like).

Then the throw button was introduced.
Great, I love being able to trigger throw on its own so I can easily test the distance visually and it’s also really nice to see when my opponent is goes for a throw but fails. It’s even a nice bluffing tool that way.
The biggest problem with this is that I’ve spent years playing games where countering a throw means pushing the throw button in (anticipatory) reaction, and now I’ve got this game that markets itself with “You can play this with friends who play different fighting games”, but instead of my throw button countering a throw, it just causes me to get thrown.

It’s a tricky subject, I like the idea of the do-nothing counter, but with a throw button, it just feels super awkward.

Healthbar / Damage:
I really like the idea of life being in chunks that are so easily identified but one of the consequences of this is that watching a 3 or 5 hit move do only 1 damage feels really unsatisfying.
I get the reasoning, but it doesn’t have any visceral satisfaction to it.

I’d also personally like prefer if there was a more precise way of showing how long it takes for a flashing health bit to go back to safety. This game has a lot of great visual feedback, but that part is really difficult to gauge when it doesn’t need to be.

General Confusion:
Having to hold down the jump button to jump on wake up is not intuitive. I didn’t even know this was a thing until I found someone on here asking about Rook’s C. I’d probably make the buffer for detecting and acting on jump a lot bigger when a player is knocked down.

Some moves also have strange properties.
For example, I know Setsuki’s C>C can be jumped out of, but it looks weird when people do jump out of it because there are other times where it clearly hits a jumping opponent.
Presumably this is due to pre/early jump frames having command throw …avoidance properties, but it doesn’t look convincing.
The command throw avoidance by jumping but not avoiding normal throws is also awkward and goes against the lessons learnt from most other games.

Overall / TL;DR

I like the game, I think it’s got a lot of potential, but there are a few things that end up making even the good games I have feel frustrating at times (online performance/hitboxes/throws feeling weird)

I bought the game because I love fighting games, dislike spending hours practicing combos and was already a big fan of Yomi/Codex, however, in its current state, I don’t feel comfortable recommending my friends to buy it at the full price.
I will keep playing and am hopeful that future iterations will get to a place where I can confidently tell friends to get it.


#2

I agree on certain things. I feel you on the throws, but that’s just one of those things for this game I feel you have to get used to.

Holding the jump button/up is definitely something that’s also in other fighting games.

Things like Models and shading I think are still WIP and online is DEFINITELY still WIP
I think Set’s C grab is getting changed up so you have to hold it, so there should be less BS with when it grabs when you’re jumping out and when it doesn’t, so it’s a lot more intentional

For hits and damage there’s been certain tweaks, like Val’s ground super used to hit like 10 times and only did one damage, and now it’s like 4 or 5 hits, so that was an improvement. I can’t think of too many other things like that except maybe some yomi counters.

I definitely feel you on a lot of these though, but lots of stuff is still very WIP


#3

Speaking of suggestions, I would love to see a multi hit move that dealt less than one damage get rid of small portions of an HP bar with each hit. This would be more difficult for stuff that’s not in a cut scene, but I would love to see (for example) Val’s ground super knocking out a quarter of a health bar with each hit, so that at the end of it you have the same damage, but each hit feels more meaningful. This is already a bunch of prgoramming that isn’t necessary, so I’m sure it’d be low priority, and it’s made even more complicated by not knowing in advance how many times someone will get hit by something like Val’s ground or air super. Maybe it would have to dynamically assess how many hits are left in a move, and then gracefully fail out by getting rid of any remaining partial health if you get knocked out of a move early, so yeah. Not easy to implement, and not at all necessary on a functionality level, but would be cool.


#4

Personally I’d settle just with opponents that fall out of Val’s gSuper early still eating 1 damage.


#5

Appreciate the replies, it’s good to get further info.
Just a couple of reponses

Sorry, I should’ve been more clear, my difficulty with this is that it feels unnatural to hold down jump as a button; holding the Up direction feels normal, it’s the norm to hold a direction for any game using a d-pad.

I really like that jump is a button, but having to hold it to ensure insta-jump after knockdown isn’t intuitive, I think I’d prefer it if they just made a special rule for an increased input buffer on knockdown.

For me it’s just any multihit move that does 1 damage, i.e. Valerie C, Setsuki super, DeGrey B>C, Geiger’s air super etc.
It’s a hard balance between making moves look cool but also having the damage make sense in a game where 1 damage is 1/5th of some of the characters health.

Knowing what is still WIP would be good, maybe it’s just everything is WIP and subject to change, but it’s hard to tell
Example: Are Grave’s animations still being worked on? Should I mention that his sweep move looks really stiff and awkward?
Maybe I just need to explore the forums more to find this stuff out.
I guess this situation happens with any EA game.

That reminds me: please let me skip the post fight workout scenes. These are cute the first couple of times, but by the third time I’d prefer to just get back to the menu as soon as possible.

It’s really encouraging to see the community is open to discussion about all of this.


#6

You can set up to jump in the settings option if you would prefer. That would solve the problem about holding a jump button. Instead, you can hold the up button. There is also a currently known bug that jump is not buffered correctly for the 8 frames. So, to ensure insta-jump after knockdown it’s required to hold jump instead of mashing or pressing jump until they fix the bug.


#7

Sorry, I did know that, it’s more because button jump is default, and anything that is default, in my opinion, needs to work well.

This is great to know, thanks for the information. I expect first frame jumps will be manageable with a single press for most people when they fix that.


#8

Regarding art, some information.

All animations are proposed finished, pretty much. Might be some minor polish later…maybe. Though we have no money really, so maybe not. The only exception is facial animation. Basically nothing about facial animation is final and most is not even implemented at all.

Grave’s sweep, for example, is proposed final. It’s a pet peeve of mine how terrible Ryu’s sweep looks in SF4 so we were careful to make a good looking sweep. Looks fine to me.

Maybe you don’t like the cel-shading or the art. Ok I can’t tell you otherwise. But just factually, the cel-shading really couldn’t be further from “out of the box”. It’s custom tech we developed, using similar techniques to what Guilty Gear uses. It’s something we did over the course of months. I have personally hand-tweaked it for every part of every character and that process has taken dozens of hours, maybe weeks of my time personally, not to mention the time others on the team have put into it. So maybe you think it’s not good enough, but it’s certainly not some “out of the box” setting we flipped to “on” and then didn’t look at. Instead, it’s a thing we worked painstakingly for months on.

I’m not aware of any moves that have a hitbox on for “half a second” too long. Maybe you mean Rook’s f+A kick, but that’s intentional to give the grappler an extra long active move. Also intentional that Geiger air C crosses up from close, so that it’s a good move.

Thanks for the feedback.


#9

I think the whole point of these options is to find what’s optimal and comfortable for YOU

Cwheezy apparently has a notoriously bizarre button layout that only he uses, but it works for him. I turn on up to jump because I like that, though a lot of people don’t.

As for moves that hit more than once, you’re right I was very sleepy when I wrote this xD. That said, I personally don’t know if it’s possible to program those mini chunks, ESPECIALLY because they aren’t guaranteed to always hit. Geiger C will always do 1 damage, no matter when it hits, nor if it hits twice.

As for what’s WIP, Sirlin mentioned that the animations and I assume a lot of the art stuff are done, so I don’t actually know what’s WIP, what’s overall polish (things like lighting), or what’s necessarily done.

Keep in mind that Early Access is exactly that: it’s early access to an unfinished game.

Also as for certain things, there’s obviously times that we will have subjective differences. Sirlin thinks Grave’s sweep looks great, and you think it looks awkward. I can understand where you’re coming from but I wouldn’t be surprised if it didn’t change. I personally think that Geiger’s C kick has a terrible sound effect, was really happy when they changed it, and then disappointed when they reverted it.


#10

Now they fixed it! Hooray! The update just went live on Steam.


#11

Sorry, half a second is probably an exaggeration, it’s hard to judge in the heat of a match, but both Valerie’s ground C and ground B Yellow slash (the one that crosses up) have hit me when I’ve managed to jump over Valerie and her body is reasonable distance from me. It’s not a great feeling to avoid the actual character but then be hit by an invisible collider. Maybe it was to do with online though, can’t be certain.
There were one or two other moves that hit behind the animation that made me feel a bit cheated for having positioned myself in what I thought was a good spot, but then got hit anyway.

There’s a certain stiffness in a lot of the animations, though obviously just my opinion. MK often has the same feeling, it’s a complaint I hear often for that, but it’s all subjective so I can’t say much.

Fair enough, sorry if my criticism came across a bit harsh. The cel shading in GG Xrd is amazing, I genuinely thought it was a 2d game when I saw it, it’s cool that you guys are going for that. I imagine you’ve already seen the talk the lead dev gave at GDC, but if not, it’s worth watching.
I can see improvements each iteration, the cloth update and the reduction of the hard lines was nice, I look forward to seeing where it goes.

Hopefully my feedback didn’t come across as heavily negative as that wasn’t the intention.
I appreciate the time everyone here has taken to respond.

(Edited for a typo)


#12

Yeah, I would end up erring on the side of just having the one hit, despite it lacking that strong impact feeling.

Fantastic to hear, updates that fix things I’m griping about are the best.


#13

The only move that looks weird is Jaina’s sA in my opinion, I like Grave’s sweep.


#14

my pet peeve is degray walking and standing animations instead. they feel stiff.