Running down the timer is a defensive strategy as well. You cannot make a fighting game where you are completely defensive. Switching between offensive and defensive depending on the situation is what is needed and learning to block is just as important as learning to rushdown. As with anything, Rushing Down or Attacking always more rewarding, but it’s also more risky. When you attack, you can be countered/reversed, careless rushdown can be punished and being predictable will lead to your downfall.
In the end, what would removing a timer do to enhance your game? Removing the tense situation of the timer almost running out, one player with a marginal lead switching to defense (safety) or offense (desperation), the second player almost dead but needing 1 big combo to win the match before timer runs out and desperately chasing or looking for that one opening to take advantage of… The adrenaline of these situations always have 2 players thinking to attack, but you still have to remember that both players cannot always be attacking. When 1 Player attacks, 1 Player defends and this changes many times throughout a match.
Removing a timer favours Defensive players, but what does it really add to the game? It detracts more aspects than it adds and reduces your audience. This also comes down to an issue of how your game works and plays. In general I don’t think you could make a fun game that favours the defender more. It just doesn’t work unless you really loved DOA3.
Something as simple as a timer encourages this and is really in the end a big deal. It changes the dynamics of a game and honestly even from a programming aspect, I don’t see how it’d make things any easier. Programming a timer shouldn’t even be a blip on your radar and currently I don’t think there are any mass international tournament worthy fighters that do not or have disabled their Timer. That and any Arcade Fighter will have a timer no ifs, ands or buts.