Fighting game franchise 'failed experiments'

If there’s one recurring theme of popular fighting game series, there’s one installment that goes off the beaten path and tries to introduce something new for the sake of breathing new life into the game. Subsequently gamers bitch about all the changes, the game bombs and the dev companies resort to making the sequel only slightly different than the series’ last popular title, in hopes of getting their fans back. So let’s talk about games that either were bad ideas from the start, or were just misunderstood and should have gotten more respect when it had the chance.

Basically I was thinking about Tekken 4 recently. It sucks that the uneven playfields didn’t catch on. Nevermind the stages actually looked realistic, they made the stages as important as the character you chose, which only added depth. They just should have been implemented better, instead of making them random selections that human players aren’t prepared for. T4 wasn’t in perfect shape (imbalanced, Jin just ran the game, etc) but I wish they didn’t scrap so much from T4 in the following sequels.

This isn’t the thread for games like Soul like Calibur 1 (huge departure from Soul Edge) or Mark of the Wolves (scrapped almost all staple Fatal Fury characters), because those games were very well received. This for game mechanics or other parts of the game’s design that the masses didn’t get behind, forcing a particular franchise to take a step backwards…

Well I basically liked nearly every idea they attempted to incorporate into Tekken 4.
I loved all the Just Frames, cramped arenas, uneven ground, position switch, increase gravity, etc.
That game was turning into a really smart fighter.

Unfortunately these aforementioned ideas were not properly implemented and it became crappy.
However, if I had a choice between what Tekken 6 is now and what Tekken 4 could have been, I would definetely go for the latter.

QFT, I thought I was the only person who felt this way about T4! Although I accept T5 as the better game, I can’t help but think it’s a really bland compromise between classic T3 and the flawed bastard that was T4.

KoF 2001 comes to mind. I guess SNK wanted to give people alot of different options with their meter. None of them were really good. :wasted:

^^ SNKP didn’t make KOF2001

Man I was just talkin about T4 yesterday. I agree and think that T4 had a lot of cool ideas that were just badly executed, like the pushes. It kinda sucks that Namco didn’t try to make things work from T4, but it was probably a smart move on their behalf.

edit! helter skelter said basically what i just said!

weaponlord! most underrated game ever that innovated in all areas that games didnt do til a couple years later…

/me prays that james goddard can someday re-acquire the WL license and do a sequel for live arcade and psn!


Killer Instinct 2, SF Three and Samurai Shodown III.

Agree with Sabre… going old school here but… good game on paper but badly accepted… Weapon Lord. The brain child of several top players in the early 90’s. Damn good ideas, just never caught on.

Wait, are you saying that Killer Insinct 2 wasn’t as good as the first, or just not as popular. Because KI2 is leaps and bounds better than KI1.

  • Bushido Blade 2
  • SF3 and parry.
  • Custom Combos
  • Tekken 4 had potential as previously mentioned. T5 and T6 seem ok but I still prefer TTT.
  • Virtua Fighter 3
  • The Last Blade series

ki2 killed the series. and was so homogenous, generic, and really bad in comparison to ki1. and is pretty universally accepted as that. and what do you now, it killed the series with the quickness!

Did the second game at least have a way to beat turtling? Overheads or throws? lol

CFE. Imo it was a great concept, but it turned out all wrong. Had it had a groove system and a respectable (for it’s time) graphic style, we could have seen an ep2. But with it having so little focused on it just made it one of the biggest failures in my mind.

SFIII certainly wasn’t a failed experiment, the idea of an experiment is to see what happens and any experiment that comes out with 3S in the end is a success in my eyes.

KI had overheads. No throws though which was annoying at times, well all the time actually.

Does the SFEX series count? Or Mortal Kombat 4?

Guilty Gear Isuka. Should have never existed.

but I jest. It got people into guilty gear proper that prolly would have never touched the game in my area.

Ryu and Fei Long’s supers in SFA3 which do max damage at max range. Huh? Aside from fan service, why put something like that into a game, when you know the exact spacing necessary will almost never come up in an actual match?

3/4 quarter view fighters (Powerstone), not so much as a failure but not enough depth. Square tried a different route but even then the combo system was a little off.