Thoughts From a Noob


#1

Right off, I’d like to make a couple things clear:

  1. I have not yet played the game
  2. I am not good at fighting games

I ended up here because I heard Fantasy Strike was a lot easier than other fighting games. After reading around, it seems just as difficult. While there may be no execution barrier, all the other ones are still in place.

One of the things said to be improved are throws. Yet they are to be feared greatly from what I can tell. In most fighting games throws are made to punish overly defensive players. In Fantasy Strike, it punishes movement.

What is to stop someone from standing in front of you, and throwing each time you try to move? A similar thing happens to me in other fighting games. People will stand in front of me and jab each time my character begins to move.

I’ve asked about this (and other problems I’ve had) in fighting game forums and the responses are not helpful:

  • Git gud
  • get rekt scrub
  • hahahahahahaha I can’t believe that works on you!
  • SALT! (and/or salt emoji)
  • Posted to scrubquotes!

More to the point, I can’t see this game as being any different. It seems like I’ll have the same problems I had before. I’ll continue to eat mix-ups, and get owned by really good players… constantly.

I can say that with confidence because I tried Rising Thunder. I had all the same problems there too. Even though the game hadn’t been available for long. The moves were easy enough, but nothing else was.

Was this helpful in some way? I hope so. Doesn’t seem like it though. If I read correctly, the game is being designed with eSports in mind. If so, I’m not even the target audience.


#2

Just as a quick thing, Rising Thunder wasn’t really accessible in any meaningful way — it was simplified in the same sense as simplified Chinese writing, where it’s more shortcuts for people who already know how to do something much more complicated. It still played a lot like Street Fighter IV.

If people are doing this, that’s… weird? It sounds like someone’s trying to show off, really. It’s into “taunting” territory. It means that they are so absolutely sure that you aren’t going to attack them that they’re just going to stand there and mess with you, because you’re playing 100% scared. It’s ordinarily a terrible strategy because it leaves your opponent wide open to anything you might do other than blocking. Basically, if this is actually happening to you in real life, in games with other people, it means that you’re almost certainly playing waaaaaay too defensively — you have to go on offense at some point in order to win, after all!

I will say, though, that with all due respect, you may be overthinking (and over-worrying about) this hypothetical point with regards to a game that you have not yet actually played, in a genre you aren’t especially familiar with/proficient in. Throws still punish overly defensive play in this game! You can’t get thrown unless you’re trying to block and/or move away, so if your opponent comes up close to you, well, you can simply attack them (or throw them, for that matter) when they get close! Or you can use projectiles to make it harder for them to get close.

I’m trying not to simply say “git gud,” but in all honesty it sounds like you might benefit greatly from learning about fighting game basics and fundamentals. One of the most important things to learn is how to control space and use your tools to prevent your opponent from getting close in the first place. Perhaps (coincidentally, the same designer’s) videos about the fundamentals of Street Fighter II might be helpful? http://www.sirlin.net/articles/street-fighter-tutorial-videos

In a nutshell, though, the main thing that stops the opponent from standing in front of you and throwing you each time you move is all of your attack buttons. Your opponent won’t get close if they’re afraid of getting hit themselves. If you play too defensively and never attack, they have nothing to fear.

For better or for worse, though, much like any other competitive game, your best bet for improving is finding someone at roughly your own level to play with. It doesn’t matter if it’s Fantasy Strike or chess or tennis, though — if you play against someone much better than you, you aren’t really going to learn anything from the losses, because you’re fundamentally playing entirely different games.

But of course, the first step to being great at something is sucking at it for a while! The real challenge is to not get discouraged, and keep at it until you don’t suck as much! Not sucking as much is the second step toward greatness!


#3

If you get a chance, you should play the game for a while. I’ve only ever been terrible at fighting games, and it’s been a really great experience playing Fantasy Strike. I think you’ll be surprised at how quickly you find yourself improving, to the point where you’re “actually playing the game” against people within a few rounds of play. I contrast that against my experience with other games, where I’m mostly just “trying to get a shoryuken to come out when I want it to” or “trying to execute the most basic of all possible combos on my opponent.”

As to your question, what’s to stop your opponent from throwing you every time you move. A couple of things. Throws don’t universally beat attacks, so you probably have a button you can press that will protect you from throws. Some attacks are even un-throwable (even by special and super throws), and the characters’ moves lists are very short and point those out.

[quote=“agamemnon, post:1, topic:189”]I’ll continue to eat mix-ups, and get owned by really good players… constantly.
[/quote]

One of the things I really appreciate, and that can be really hard to believe if you haven’t played it, is just how quickly it teaches you what you can do. Each character has, like, 12 attacks and they do very different things. So like, you’ll fight a character with a fireball, and you’ll just try stuff out. Eventually you’ll figure out “oh, this is something I can do against fireballs.” Because a lot of the difficult execution stuff has been taken out of the game, you just get to the “oh I see, I have to do X” moments so much faster. Like, “after a round or two or three” not “after three hours of practice in training mode.”

A more experienced player is probably going to win against a less experienced player a lot at first, yes. But I’ve been playing for about… 40 hours total, at this point? And this weekend I played against people who play, like, anime fighters and stuff? And the sets were really close. I even went on a serious win-streak for a while! In any other game I’d still be trying to figure out the basics of what my character is even supposed to be good at.

The mix-ups in this game are also, as far as I’ve seen, pretty toned down. There’s no “high-low” mix-ups at all, since there’s no crouching. Generally you can pretty quickly figure stuff out. “Oh, when they do that move, I can’t press A or I’ll get hit” or “if they block this, they get to throw me.” I’m not kidding when I say you can learn stuff really quickly in this game. Like, really quickly.


#4

Yes, listen to @mysticjuicer! He is Canadian-level polite and lovely as a person, and comes from very much the same place in terms of “can’t fightgam”!


#5

And the amount of time you “suck” at Fantasy Strike is really short! Like, “a dozen rounds” or so. Compared to other fighting games where you suck for like months?


#6

Bud, I literally introduced this game to people who have never played fighting games beyond Smash. I told them the 5 buttons and some basic rundowns and they were playing it no sweat.
I suppose I’m redundant, but really, play the game and things will make more sense. A lot of stuff around is big fighting man talk and how it applies to this game to prove its legitimacy, but the whole reason this game is amazing is because of how simple and easy it is to pick up and play in 5 minutes.
Trust us.


#7

Years xDDD


#8

You’re not wrong! :smiley: I’m so bad at fighting games that even someone who’s played for a few months seems godlike tho. lol


#9

One of the things said to be improved are throws. Yet they are to be feared greatly from what I can tell. In most fighting games throws are made to punish overly defensive players. In Fantasy Strike, it punishes movement.

What is to stop someone from standing in front of you, and throwing each time you try to move? A similar thing happens to me in other fighting games. People will stand in front of me and jab each time my character begins to move.

I don’t think this is a realistic situation since players will be moving constantly anyways. Even if a player wanted to “throw each time they try to move” There is a ton of risk involved which doesn’t make it as sound a strategy as you’d think.

More to the point, I can’t see this game as being any different. It seems like I’ll have the same problems I had before. I’ll continue to eat mix-ups, and get owned by really good players… constantly.

Yes, this is true. If you’re a new player, and your fighting game experience is less than an experienced player, you will be at a disadvantage. This is true of any fighting game, even Divekick.

Simplified, there are 3 layers of unlocking a fighting game; Game knowledge, technique/execution, then actual player skill.

Fantasy Strike’s mechanics allow newer players to close the gap on experienced players much faster than other games because it really tightens up on game knowledge and technique/execution. Where Guilty Gear hands you a 1000 page bible of required game knowledge, Fantasy Strike hands you a 10-page manual, with a big font. Where Street Fighter wants you to play Liszt’s Feux Follets on the piano, Fantasy Strike is fine with Chopsticks.

So the only thing left from there is player skill, which is the most important test and requires the players to develop themselves. Because Fantasy Strike has a very short list of game knowledge and techniques, players are able to develop their actual skill much faster in Fantasy Strike since they are not bogged down with learning a ton of frame data or super hard combos.

Our playtests and convention booths show this to be true, as we have found return players make huge strides in their game skill in Fantasy Strike in just a few hours of matches and experimenting with characters. We have found complete fighting game noobs actually put up a good fight against Leontas, Sirlin and I at these trade shows after just a few hours of practice. You can’t say that for SFV or Guilty Gear.


#10

The thing about throwing a player every time they move isn’t really realistic. In Street Fighter 2 throwing other players every time they move isn’t a strong strategy, and throws are even stronger in there since they can’t be yomi countered.


#11

That’s also how I felt. I found Street Fighter IV to be way too hard. So I tried Rising Thunder. The controls were easy, but nothing else was. I just don’t see how Fantasy Strike will make it any easy for players like me. (Aside from execution and combos.)[quote=“GRAG, post:2, topic:189”]
What is to stop someone from standing in front of you, and throwing each time you try to move? A similar thing happens to me in other fighting games. People will stand in front of me and jab each time my character begins to move.

If people are doing this, that’s… weird? It sounds like someone’s trying to show off, really. It’s into “taunting” territory. It means that they are so absolutely sure that you aren’t going to attack them that they’re just going to stand there and mess with you, because you’re playing 100% scared.
[/quote]
It seems like we might have a miscommunication. Let me use a specific example:


I recently played a guy in UMvC3. The only thing he would do is dash up to within jab range with his character, Wolverine. Then he would simply stand still. If I attacked him, he would jab. His jab was faster than any of my attacks. So he stuffed me every time. I tried to step forward and throw him. Again, he jabs me. When I moved away, he would follow and maintain jab-distance. I tried jumps, super-jumps, and back-dashes. I couldn’t escape.


What I’m saying is that this is what people do to me all the time in fighting games. Any fighting game I can play online (including FightCade games) this is what happens. It’s rare when it doesn’t occur.

In Fantasy Strike specifically, it would seem to be highly advantageous to simply wait for your opponent to approach. Once in throw range, you can just grab them. I see myself walking up to mix-up an opponent, and them simply throwing me each time.[quote=“GRAG, post:2, topic:189”]
You can’t get thrown unless you’re trying to block and/or move away, so if your opponent comes up close to you, well, you can simply attack them (or throw them, for that matter) when they get close! Or you can use projectiles to make it harder for them to get close.
[/quote]
What are you supposed to do when your character is slower? or when they have a built-in projectile punish?[quote=“GRAG, post:2, topic:189”]
One of the most important things to learn is how to control space and use your tools to prevent your opponent from getting close in the first place. Perhaps (coincidentally, the same designer’s) videos about the fundamentals of Street Fighter II might be helpful? http://www.sirlin.net/articles/street-fighter-tutorial-videos
[/quote]
I’ve seen those videos a few times. They are good, and I recommend them to people that ask. I feel like I understand how/why space is controlled, but I’m not particularly good at it.

To reference the previous example, the Wolverine player used their tools to get in, and stay in. He negated all my ranged attack options. For a brief moment I got some distance, and fired a projectile. He dashed forward, and jumped over it. Putting him right back to jab range. :confused:


#12

I can say this, if the game can help me learn more about how to actually play fighting games, it’s worth $5/month. Because, I would honestly be surprised by anything that helps me improve.[quote=“mysticjuicer, post:3, topic:189”]
I contrast that against my experience with other games, where I’m mostly just “trying to get a shoryuken to come out when I want it to” or “trying to execute the most basic of all possible combos on my opponent.”
[/quote]
I don’t have much trouble with move execution. Combos I have a lot of trouble with. It seems this would be less of a problem in Fantasy Strike, but it’s a double-edged sword. If it’s easier for me, it’s easier for everyone.

Oh. Most games leave you to figure that out on your own. That’s helpful.

There’s no crouching? I hadn’t read that yet. I don’t know how I missed that.[quote=“mysticjuicer, post:3, topic:189”]
I’m not kidding when I say you can learn stuff really quickly in this game. Like, really quickly.
[/quote]
I’ll take your word for it. I may give it a try.


#13

Impressive.
I don’t think you can say that about any fighting game.


#14

Right, yeah, that’s… really odd behavior, if it’s deliberate. Like, in order to simply wait there and react to your attacks with a jab like you say, you would need literally superhuman reflexes.

If this is actually happening, then the odds are very good that what’s actually happening here is that they’re more or less coincidentally pressing buttons around the same times, that just happen to beat your attacks (which is much, much more likely to be the case — people are really bad at NOT pushing buttons, and one thing you learn after playing fighting games for years is how long to wait to expect an opponent to run out of the willpower required to not push a button). Because of their real-time nature, and the nature of human reflexes and the like, you’re constantly reacting to the game state about a half second ago, and both players are pretty much just predicting their opponent’s next moves. If you haven’t really fully internalized this notion, it can be easy to unintentionally ascribe superhuman abilities to an opponent who’s either lucky or just used to knowing how long people tend to wait before pushing buttons.

Basically, if the opponent is getting close and that’s the issue, then your core game plan should be: make it as hard as possible for them to do so. Pick a character who uses lots of projectiles, and keep them flying. If you think of it as being advantageous to let an opponent approach because it means they enter your throw range, then rob your opponent of that advantage by simply keeping them far away.

And in this game, at least, you can beat throws cleanly with yomi counters (let go of all controls) — if you knock down an opponent and walk up to mix them up, you can just get really close and let go of the controls to abuse their fighting game reflexes that tell them “Mash throw on wakeup!” ; ) Of course, the AI right now isn’t super smart (it’s only a step above “just randomly mashes buttons”) so you can’t really use mind games on it, but if you find a friend to play with, it’s a good way to keep them playing honest.

Ultimately, though, the best way to really understand what everyone means with the “seriously, it’s a legitimately accessible fighting game for people who haven’t played fighting games since the Clinton administration” is to simply give it a try for a little while. If nothing else, it’s fun to just sort of noodle around in arcade mode and try to make your way through it, and it’s only five bucks to give it a shot. You can even hold off on canceling your Patreon subscription until just before the next payment would go through, because you’re likely to still be good for the May update ; )


#15

This honestly sounds like you were fighting a bot. :open_mouth:

If you’re playing as either Rook or Midori, the two grapplers in the cast, then yes, having people get near you in order to start throwing them is quite good! Still, neither of these characters is unbeatable by non-grappler opponents, or even by characters that want to be in-close against their opponents. There are attacks that put you in an unthrowable state. There are attacks that hit from outside throw range (most, if not all attacks fall into this category, I think). There are attacks that hit faster than throws activate.

Trust me, I have never won a game by doing nothing until my opponent approaches, or by throwing them whenever they were in range of my throws in reaction to them pressing a button. :slight_smile:

These are really complicated questions, but the answer isn’t “slower characters will always lose against faster characters” I promise. :slight_smile: When I lose to a faster character, I usually think “hmm, they got in close and then it seemed very difficult to defend myself - next time I will try harder to keep them at a distance.” When I lose to a character who punishes my projectiles I would try to use my projectiles less, and see if there is another approach to keeping them away from me.

The other thing to keep in mind is that the upper limit to combos is very low. Like for 99% of cases, a single hit deals 1 damage, a “good combo” deals 2 damage, and a max damage combo deals 3. If a character’s max damage combo is 3, no amount of execution ability is going to let a better player do more than 3 damage to you when they get it. Likewise, it won’t take you very long to be able to execute that max damage combo.

By the way, where do you live? If you’re in the Toronto, Ontario area, I’d be thrilled to play some games. Likewise if you’re coming to the Fantasy Strike Expo in June, in California. There’s no online play for this game yet, and if you’re like me, you might not feel like arcade mode or training mode are very good at teaching you how to play well. I’m not really interested in playing against CPUs, and I’m not experienced enough that I have questions that I need training mode to answer.


#16

so like…have you actually tried the game yet or is this all still speculation from the things you’ve read?


#17

I’ll be posting video for some matches I played with Juushichi and Silmerion a couple of weeks ago. Hopefully that will help give some context for my really positive feelings about this game.


#18

So here’s me and a couple of friends playing this game. Hopefully it gives you a sense of what I’m talking about.

I’m playing Midori, and have played about 20 hours of Fantasy Strike at this point. I’ve played a little bit of Guilty Gear XX with a friend, never above the level of just doing special moves all the time forever, and have recently played about a dozen games of Street Fighter 3 Third Strike.

Juushichi (Valerie/DeGrey) and Silmerion (Setsuki) have a ton of fighting game experience on me. Anime fighters primarily, like UNIEL and Guilty Gear. Juushichi helped develop Project M, and both of them regularly go to tournaments and participate in their local scenes for their preferred games. They’ve both played about… 6 hours at this point? So they’re very early in their experience with Fantasy Strike in particular, and the characters they’ve chosen to play.