Sirlin's topic on balance

Sirlin had some pretty good on-point examples on different views of professional play/balance issues of fighting games and etc. games alike. but the actual sumary did not really grip me until he showed a picture of a mirror match of ryu in which both are doing RH’s at each other. He basically was saying if nothing has variety it is balanced (or at least that what i think he meant). So if that is the case then shouldn’t some balanced fighters won’t last as long as the opposite > variety in which the characters attributes themselves makes the game unbalanced. For exp., A week ago I had an idea for a fighter where players will play with their personally created fightres who have the exact same normals, overheads, crossups, frame data most likely would be the same. ame prioity, same hitboxes, and whatever. almost everything would be exactly the same. except the only difference would be the supers/gauges the characters had or just diffenet sprites to make it look good. seeing as supers, and tactical guages are in a category of its own it would be a balanced game. but then something like this would not last long media wise, and even for us underground enthusiasts. Because then the other fighters would shine so much over a game like this that it would get no play. i dont know but no variety means no fun for me. MvC2, CvS2, 3S, and GG always has some player complaining about whats broken and what isn’t. But its still being played even with the knowledge we scounged up from bs we seen.

So basically what im saying is complete balance/same thing for each character: = No Play or Boring fighter?

Im pretty sure if a fighter was able to do this it would get hell o’ a lot of play.

Part of what makes fighting games interesting is the imbalance; not even implying that one character is better than another, but that they are different from one another. So every character has a unique respone to a given strategy from the opposing character.

About a game with every character being the same…it’s crossed my mind before. I had the idea of making a single character with every (EVERY) tool that a character can have. DP anti airs, charge anti airs, projectiles, charge projectiles, rekkas, counters, command throws, running command throws, crossups, you name it. Then just let the player go for broke, use whatever they want. Then keep up with the game. No one using the counters? Make them do more damage/less whiff recovery until they are worth using. Everyone using normal DPs for AA? Make the charge ones better/DP ones worse. Maybe make the charge AAs a combo starter on CH.

It seemed like a cool idea at the time, anyway.

boring… i’d rather SvC Chaos than have a perfectly balanced game that you were able to play each and every character exactly the same.

I can just imagine SF2 with 8 ryus. It’s not so much that balance is boring it’s that fighting games require a cast with diverse playstyles and tools. Imbalance is just the consequence of variety. The other consequence is that too many universal defensive tools usurps the strategy of the game (SF2 to SF3 for example).

This is why SF2 was great. You only had 3 (occasionally 4 and sim has 5) ways around the fireball. If there are too many tools a best tool eventually surfaces and defeats the strategy.

A one-character fighter is actually a really good idea. It’s just that it’d have to be done really, really well to be accepted by the masses. Any mistakes and it’s done.

It’s actually not that hard of a concept to see. Think about boxing. Every boxer pretty much has the same choices as far as punch selection and defensive moves.

Think of boxer weight/strength/speed as the different moves the one character in the fighting game can do.

Obviously it’s not something that can be explained well in just a few sentences, but it’s certainly doable.

you’d play SF2 with 8 ryus? or 3s with nothing but Ken mirrors? or GG with just Sol?

why not play the old old fighters like karate champ.


i <3 the people that argue that MK was a really good game… it was nice lookin for it’s time… and liu kang had a secret… double fatality :slight_smile: (do his fatality on the pit stage)…

A completely balanced game is a bad idea.
The more balanced a game becomes, the more boring it becomes.
Part of what makes a FG fun is discovering and overcoming imbalances in the system.

not necessarily… vampire savior and super turbo are hella fun, and hella balanced… :slight_smile:

It’s called Karate Champ.

Maybe one day we can have both variety and balance. I’m actually hoping to focus my Master’s research (Masters of Applied Science in Software Engineering) in developing techniques to detect imbalances in competitive games at the design phase, before testing begins. Stuff like this can be done on a much smaller - scale for simpler games using game theory. Essentially, using mathematics one can model a game and discover the winning strategies from the model itself. If someone could devise practical applications of this theory to complex competitive games like fighters or MMORPGs, it would be a great advancement in the game industry. Think about it - you could discover an overpowered character or class just from the design of the game itself, and make the appropriate tweaks before production.

Tell that about VF 4 Evo, most balanced game possibly ever. You can literally plan anyone in that game.

Oh ST isnt that balanced, its a good game but the balance in it is greatly overrated.

Really the most important point would to be balance wont matter unless the level of play of both players are the same.

Well practically every game has tiers, so none of those are completely balanced. So I really think it comes down to how fun the game is to play. A lot of peeps play MvC2 but we all know it’s not a game where balance is a premium. Balancing is just very difficult when you’re dealing with characters that are vastly different, because there are always situations you did not anticipate even after location testing games.

Really the best you could probably realistically hope for is for a game to have as much of the cast as possible in the top or high tiers.

SSF2T may be hella balanced, but not completely balanced. It is imbalanced, but such that every character in every tier has the tools needed to overcome–in the hands of the right player, of course.

Vampire Savior… eh, I’ll just keep my mouth shut.

Unique characters that have diff merits that are roughly equal in value is the answer.

Perfect example is SC series. Completly balanced game = no fun. SC2 brought the option of being able to parry out of everything which puts u at a neutral state to equal things out. You can even parry throws. To me this is what ruined that game, is it was to fair so it became no fun.

Problem with a game that has 8 ryus but all with different supers and specials…is the fact that whichever ryu has the best specials and supers is automatically the best char. There is no reason to ever play any other ryu.

Tekken is a good example of having so many different styles and characteristics that characters intrique players thus making them want to play more. (even if they are underdog chars) Balancing fighters is hard, prime thing you have to be aware of is lookin out for moves that a player can exploit and overly abuse while keeping themselvs safe.


am i in the twilight zone

I’d love to see someone GI out of every situation in SC. What made SC stupid was step-G and g2. step g was a high reward low risk solution to every attack. and g2 defeated the rewards of GI. If GI killed SC, then parry must have killed 3s in a very similar way.

when looking at those games by comparison to say…

mvc2, third strike, cvs2, tekken 5…

them, and prolly guilty gear slash… are the most balanced fighters that still have a decent amount of competition