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Fighting games are the worst because they make me feel guilty. They make me resort to distasteful tactics in order to claim victory over the opposing player. They make me want to destroy the controller in my hands. Fighting games are simply the worst.
This hatred goes back to the days of Mortal Kombat on the Sega Genesis. My brother and I would play the game for hours, and he would always win. I swear he was unstoppable with Sub-Zero. I would go back to the drawing boards and came up with a new play book. This new ingenious play was called, "Spam Scorpion's Grapple Attack" and it worked. It worked too well.
Defeating my brother felt good at first; however, I began to feel this disgusting sensation in my stomach. Guilt. I wasn't playing by the rules anymore; I had sacrificed fun for victory. What is the point of playing a video game if your not having fun? When games stop being fun, they become pointless. And fighting games are pointless.
Sure I have played other fighting games since then — mostly out of peer pressure. However, I kept feeling the same guilt over and over. Ryu's Hadoken attack, and Yoda in Soulcalibur 4. Each and every time, with any of these games if I try to play serious with a friend I get destroyed. So I resort back to my old playbook, "Spam a Special Move" and wallah, victory.
I know that there is a large fighting game community out there. One that is talented with this particular genre. The EVO Tournament is the inspiration for this article. Seeing all these players being able to chain combos and make the fighting look sophisticated, it makes me sick, because I know a much more simple and effective way to victory. Just spam an attack.
To me it seems that the fighting genre is the only one where you can win by either being very skilled, or extremely crude. I blame the competition. If it didn't feel so bad to lose, I wouldn't resort to these cheap tactics. Even in sports games such as: Madden or Tiger Woods PGA. I can admit failure and move on. I can shrug off the shame, but after losing a match in Soulcalibur 4 I want to throw the controller through a window.
Both these genres are extremely competitive, so why do fighting games have such an effect on me? Perhaps it is the simplicity of the objective. In fighting games your main goal is to defeat the other player. In sports games the objective is to accumulate more points then the other player. It is the immediate personal defeat in fighting games that make them so terrible. Defeat is personal, and fighting games can make my best friend become my greatest enemy.
Perhaps I am just a sore loser when it comes to fighting games, but instead of admitting defeat I'll just blame the genre for being the worst.