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Why Mobile Fighting Games Fail, and the One Game That Gets It RIGHT

Why Mobile Fighting Games Fail, and the One Game That Gets It RIGHT Hey everyone, I have a new history article on the evolution of Single Player modes in fighting games coming out in a few weeks. But, I recently played a new fighting game and just had to make a article about it. If youre anything like me, you use your phone for three things.

Browsing social media, taking important phone calls, But I also use my phone to play all kinds of games Arcade games, sports games, simulations, clickers, idle games, but through all of my years of owning a smartphone with enough power to play games, one genre that Ive been almost completely dissatisfied with is my favorite genre. Fighting games. And thats because most mobile fighting games commit at least one of a few cardinal sins. My name is stumblebee, and Ill be looking at the mistakes that mobile fighting games make when transitioning a game to the small screen, and a recommendation for the one mobile fighter that I think nails it.

Please consider subscribing to the channel following me on Twitter at StumblebeeTV if you enjoy this article at any time. Due to their reliance on precise movements for both character control and special moves, fighting games are perhaps the one genre where stick inputs matters most. So, why oh why do so many fighting games on a phone force you to use a tiny joystick on a capacitive screen? With an on-screen D-pad, you dont get a sense of tactile feedback youd otherwise get with a controller.

Causing missed inputs, incorrect moves coming out, thumb cramps, the works. This causes to you fight the controls more than your opponent. There are even products out there that are solely dedicated to making the experience of using thumbsticks on touchscreens not completely suck. Some mobile developers understand that capacitive touch screens often dont make the best controller. But, in order to remedy that, some go in the complete opposite direction, simplifying their game too much, creating what essentially boils down to a glorified idle tap game.

In this type of game, you dont have the choice to move, because in order to force action, characters will either automatically move towards each other or start so close together that they have no choice but to do their best Frye vs. Takayama impression. While the gameplay of some of these titles require some semblance of timing in order to maximize the damage on combos, the gameplay on many of these titles are often so simple that it can be sometimes hard to even call them fighting games.

And the last, and one of the most pervasive issue in most of the fighting games Ive played on phones is the constant expectation for players to open their wallet. I will happily spend three dollars to play one of my favorite SNK games, or five dollars to play the jankiest version of Street Fighter 4 out there, and Ill even watch the occasional ad if they arent too obtrusive and spend money on the ad-free version if I enjoy the game enough. But the mobile games industry is rife with exploitative monetization schemes, and many of the fighting games on the platform unfortunately arent an exception. Many games feature long, complicated upgrade paths and energy systems that lead to grindier and grindier progression that just so happens to be bypassable by using premium currency and consumable items that you can either buy a lot of at once with real money, or earn at a frustratingly slow pace. Lootboxes that hold gameplay-relevant items are almost a guarantee, letting players gamble their way to a better squad much faster than if they would play for it normally.

Which brings me to the topic of todays article. I was browsing around Twitter when I spotted this tweet which featured a combo in a fighting game that Id never played before. It looked and sounded fun enough so I clicked some links and found that its a game called Flappy Fighter, an satirical take on the 2013 viral smash Flappy Bird. The game is a free iOS-exclusive right now with an Android port coming at an undetermined time in the future. I went in with fairly low expectations but quickly realized that Flappy Fighter gave me the best fighting game experience that Ive ever had on a phone.

Full disclosure, this article is not sponsored. I did reach out to the developer on Twitter for some music for this article and image assets for the thumbnail. I know many mobile game studios will reach out to youtubers for sponsored articles, but this isnt one of those.

I just wanted to highlight some things this game does better than other games of its type. Starting with the most important thing, the controls. Instead of a d-pad or joystick, Flappy Fighter gives you a forward dash button and a backdash button. But thats not all of the movement options you have, however.

You also have access to four special moves. A backwards hurricane kick which doubles as a back jump, a jump-forward roundhouse, a fireball, and an uppercut. These six buttons give you all the control that you need over your character. Even without a d-pad, nor any ability to walk slowly, you can still accurately position your character anywhere you want on the screen, allowing you to play a keepaway game with fireballs, or an up-close game where youre rushing your opponent down.

Despite the lack of normal attacks, you could even use a classic midrange strategy by throwing fireballs, and uppercutting your opponent out of the air as they jump in to counter-attack. Even though youre just tapping on a screen to move and attack, the concessions to the mobile platform dont mean that this is anything other than a full-fat fighting game experience. And thats even before we get into some advanced mechanics, like dash cancelling fireballs, cancelling the forward jump into a backwards hurricane kick, cancelling a fireballs startup animation with a super move, and more. The game is fast, the AI is challenging, but fair and beatable, the implementation of hitstop feels great, with a legitimately fun and open-ended combo system being the cherry on top.

All of this serves to make the gameplay of this mobile fighter feel as close to its counterparts on console as possible without the need for joysticks, generic tapping, special move cards, or consumables. So, weve established that Flappy Fighters mechanics are great, but you may have noticed that the game is also incredibly slick in its presentation. The Street Fighter 2 inspiration is undeniable, but you can tell that the developer has a ton of reverence for that game, from even small details the inflection on the fireball voiceline, and the fact that you cant understand what the character is saying when throwing out a hurricane kick.

Flappy Fighter is also unique in the sense that its not trying to be anything other than a rock-solid mobile fighter. Theres no way to upgrade your characters strength, no premium in-game currency, no unlock timers, and no game-changing lootboxes. The monetization strategy at play here is more than fair.

The game will occasionally show you a skippable ad when moving from one menu to another, and will sometimes give you the option to watch an ad in full for a chance to unlock an alternate color. You can also disable ads and unlock the color for four dollars, which feels like its absolutely worth it. Flappy Fighters developer is promising a roadmap of future updates for his game, including new characters, stages, and more. As I said earlier, hes also looking into porting his game to Android, but if you have an iPhone or iPad, youre able to download it right now. Its 30 megs, so it wont damage your data cap.

And if you do decide to play it, I hope you see what I mean when I say that its my new favorite mobile fighting game. Now, if you do have an android, Id like to recommend the game Footsies, by HiFightTV. Its a really good 2-player fighting game that shows you the basics about the mid-range game. What fighting games are you playing on your mobile device? Have you tried Flappy Fighter?

Lemme know in the comments below. Once again, if you enjoyed this article, subscribe to my channel, andor follow me on Twitter at StumblebeeTV. Ill be seeing you in a few weeks with a new article on the history and evolution of Single Player modes in fighting games.

Peace. Why Mobile Fighting Games Fail, and the One Game That Gets It RIGHT Hey everyone, I have a new history article on the evolution of Single Player modes in fighting games coming out in a few weeks. But, I recently played a new fighting game and just had to make a article about it. If youre anything like me, you use your phone for three things.

Browsing social media, taking important phone calls, But I also use my phone to play all kinds of games Arcade games, sports games, simulations, clickers, idle games, but through all of my years of owning a smartphone with enough power to play games, one genre that Ive been almost completely dissatisfied with is my favorite genre. Fighting games. And thats because most mobile fighting games commit at least one of a few cardinal sins. My name is stumblebee, and Ill be looking at the mistakes that mobile fighting games make when transitioning a game to the small screen, and a recommendation for the one mobile fighter that I think nails it. Please consider subscribing to the channel following me on Twitter at StumblebeeTV if you enjoy this article at any time.

Due to their reliance on precise movements for both character control and special moves, fighting games are perhaps the one genre where stick inputs matters most. So, why oh why do so many fighting games on a phone force you to use a tiny joystick on a capacitive screen? With an on-screen D-pad, you dont get a sense of tactile feedback youd otherwise get with a controller. Causing missed inputs, incorrect moves coming out, thumb cramps, the works. This causes to you fight the controls more than your opponent.

There are even products out there that are solely dedicated to making the experience of using thumbsticks on touchscreens not completely suck. Some mobile developers understand that capacitive touch screens often dont make the best controller. But, in order to remedy that, some go in the complete opposite direction, simplifying their game too much, creating what essentially boils down to a glorified idle tap game.

In this type of game, you dont have the choice to move, because in order to force action, characters will either automatically move towards each other or start so close together that they have no choice but to do their best Frye vs. Takayama impression. While the gameplay of some of these titles require some semblance of timing in order to maximize the damage on combos, the gameplay on many of these titles are often so simple that it can be sometimes hard to even call them fighting games. And the last, and one of the most pervasive issue in most of the fighting games Ive played on phones is the constant expectation for players to open their wallet.

I will happily spend three dollars to play one of my favorite SNK games, or five dollars to play the jankiest version of Street Fighter 4 out there, and Ill even watch the occasional ad if they arent too obtrusive and spend money on the ad-free version if I enjoy the game enough. But the mobile games industry is rife with exploitative monetization schemes, and many of the fighting games on the platform unfortunately arent an exception. Many games feature long, complicated upgrade paths and energy systems that lead to grindier and grindier progression that just so happens to be bypassable by using premium currency and consumable items that you can either buy a lot of at once with real money, or earn at a frustratingly slow pace.

Lootboxes that hold gameplay-relevant items are almost a guarantee, letting players gamble their way to a better squad much faster than if they would play for it normally. Which brings me to the topic of todays article. I was browsing around Twitter when I spotted this tweet which featured a combo in a fighting game that Id never played before. It looked and sounded fun enough so I clicked some links and found that its a game called Flappy Fighter, an satirical take on the 2013 viral smash Flappy Bird. The game is a free iOS-exclusive right now with an Android port coming at an undetermined time in the future.

I went in with fairly low expectations but quickly realized that Flappy Fighter gave me the best fighting game experience that Ive ever had on a phone. Full disclosure, this article is not sponsored. I did reach out to the developer on Twitter for some music for this article and image assets for the thumbnail. I know many mobile game studios will reach out to youtubers for sponsored articles, but this isnt one of those.

I just wanted to highlight some things this game does better than other games of its type. Starting with the most important thing, the controls. Instead of a d-pad or joystick, Flappy Fighter gives you a forward dash button and a backdash button.

But thats not all of the movement options you have, however. You also have access to four special moves. A backwards hurricane kick which doubles as a back jump, a jump-forward roundhouse, a fireball, and an uppercut. These six buttons give you all the control that you need over your character. Even without a d-pad, nor any ability to walk slowly, you can still accurately position your character anywhere you want on the screen, allowing you to play a keepaway game with fireballs, or an up-close game where youre rushing your opponent down.

Despite the lack of normal attacks, you could even use a classic midrange strategy by throwing fireballs, and uppercutting your opponent out of the air as they jump in to counter-attack. Even though youre just tapping on a screen to move and attack, the concessions to the mobile platform dont mean that this is anything other than a full-fat fighting game experience. And thats even before we get into some advanced mechanics, like dash cancelling fireballs, cancelling the forward jump into a backwards hurricane kick, cancelling a fireballs startup animation with a super move, and more. The game is fast, the AI is challenging, but fair and beatable, the implementation of hitstop feels great, with a legitimately fun and open-ended combo system being the cherry on top. All of this serves to make the gameplay of this mobile fighter feel as close to its counterparts on console as possible without the need for joysticks, generic tapping, special move cards, or consumables.

So, weve established that Flappy Fighters mechanics are great, but you may have noticed that the game is also incredibly slick in its presentation. The Street Fighter 2 inspiration is undeniable, but you can tell that the developer has a ton of reverence for that game, from even small details the inflection on the fireball voiceline, and the fact that you cant understand what the character is saying when throwing out a hurricane kick. Flappy Fighter is also unique in the sense that its not trying to be anything other than a rock-solid mobile fighter. Theres no way to upgrade your characters strength, no premium in-game currency, no unlock timers, and no game-changing lootboxes. The monetization strategy at play here is more than fair.

The game will occasionally show you a skippable ad when moving from one menu to another, and will sometimes give you the option to watch an ad in full for a chance to unlock an alternate color. You can also disable ads and unlock the color for four dollars, which feels like its absolutely worth it. Flappy Fighters developer is promising a roadmap of future updates for his game, including new characters, stages, and more.

As I said earlier, hes also looking into porting his game to Android, but if you have an iPhone or iPad, youre able to download it right now. Its 30 megs, so it wont damage your data cap. And if you do decide to play it, I hope you see what I mean when I say that its my new favorite mobile fighting game. Now, if you do have an android, Id like to recommend the game Footsies, by HiFightTV.

Its a really good 2-player fighting game that shows you the basics about the mid-range game. What fighting games are you playing on your mobile device? Have you tried Flappy Fighter?

Lemme know in the comments below. Once again, if you enjoyed this article, subscribe to my channel, andor follow me on Twitter at StumblebeeTV. Ill be seeing you in a few weeks with a new article on the history and evolution of Single Player modes in fighting games.

Peace.

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