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Top 10 Worst Fighting Game Mechanics Of All Time


Now there are fighting games with some amazing mechanics like Killer Instinct with ‘Instinct Mode’ or Street Fighter V  with ‘V Triggers’. However, this is not going to be a list that contains any of those amazing mechanics. Instead, this list is about some of the worst fighting game mechanics in history and we saw it fit to do a list like this since EVO 2019 will finally be here this coming weekend. As you will see on this list, the majority of the entries will be “come back” mechanics. This does not mean that the games featured on the list are completely awful; it’s just that mechanics within these games are the parts that make players call them “unfair” or “busted”. In fact, many of the games on this list will be games showcased at EVO 2019; on both Saturday and Sunday nights. So, without further ado, here are the top ten worst fighting game mechanics of all time.

10. Gem System-Marvel vs. Capcom Infinite

The reason why the ‘Gem System’ takes our number ten spot and is not higher on the list, is because of not all of the gems within the ‘Gem System’ being ‘busted’ or ‘broken’. To explain this system, the gems are the ‘Infinity Stones’ that we see scattered throughout the Marvel universe; ‘Time’, ‘Space’, ‘Reality’, ‘Power’, ‘Soul’, and ‘Mind’. What the ‘Gem System’ does is power the user with a version of that stone’s power. This gives them a huge advantage over the opponent and stones like the ‘Soul Stone’ is one that makes the game just not fun to play. What the ‘Soul Stone’ does is steal health from an opponent or revives your teammate, with a small percentage of life, and allows the player to control both characters at once. This can create some pretty nasty mix-ups and high damage combos and since everyone uses the ‘Soul Stone’ online, whats the point of using any of the other five. One being this “busted” makes the others completely irrelevant, even though they are fun to use like the ‘Space Stone’ which contains the opponent in a rectangular box and keeps them in the box for a short period of time.

9. Self Regenerating Meter-Mortal Kombat 11

This mechanic makes no sense in a fighting game, maybe in a M.O.B.A, not a fighting game. This allows the ‘EX Meter’ to self regenerate, meaning players don’t have to work to fill the meter back up. In past Mortal Kombat entries, players had to do long or high damaging combos to fill the meter, which was also connected to the ‘X-Ray’ but that’s for later. The game having this mechanic makes the inherently simpler and less rewarding. We get that there are people who enjoy this system but for long-time fans, this mechanic can make the game seem boring and no fun. Where’s the work or struggle of understanding meter management and meter use. Players can just sit back and ‘Zone’ you out, without the fear of running out of meter. It’ll just come back by its self. Makes no sense.

Side Note: You can see the meter on the bottom left and right-hand corners of the video above.

8. Super Dashing-Dragonball Fighter Z

The ‘Super Dash’ is a core mechanic to DBFZ; however, it does make the game annoying to play a bit. When your opponent can dash from full screen and get away with it, we have a problem. Plus, at times the ‘Super Dash’ can completely miss the player and do a full turn-a-round and hit you from behind. This causes there to be a “cross-up” wich your opponent can get a full combo off of. At other times, the ‘Super Dash’ can completely “whiff” leaving your opponent with a full-screen advantage. This leaves you completely open to ‘Zoning’ options or they could chase you down with their own ‘Super Dash’. We understand that this mechanic is a mainstay within DBFZ, but some changes need to be made soon.

7. Zoning-Injustice 2

So ‘Zoning’ is an important aspect of fighting games, its a type of play-style that players use all the time. This is fine, players should expect that. However, too much of it or not enough ways to deal with it and you can leave a sour taste in many mouths. In Injustice 2 too many characters had ‘Zoning’ capability; this means that those players stand at full-screen or mid-screen and throw projectiles at you. Of course, there are mind tricks involved with ‘Zoning’, it’s not easy to do it successfully but when players can throw out projectiles constantly without any sort of fear, that’s not good. This was a huge problem in this game. I would say about 70% of the roster could ‘Zone’ out any number of ‘Rush Down’ characters (characters that liked to be in your face the whole match). Even characters like ‘Aquaman’ or ‘Black Adam’ had some decent ‘Zoning’ or ‘Poking’ options combined with their massive combo damage and potential. That’s why you saw a lot of players play those two characters at tournaments.

6. Rage Arts-Tekken 7

Going to say this first, amazing game, truly; however, the ‘Rage Art’ “come back” not so amazing. Now, every fighting game has a ‘Super Move’, don’t know why but that’s how it is. Though, when your super move does 30% to 40%, in one go and it doesn’t scale well with combos, it should be nerfed. What this “come back” mechanic does is steal the fight because of a couple button presses and has led to many people disliking the mechanic. Tekken 7 is a fantastic fighter, look at the tournament scene for proof, but it doesn’t need ‘Supers’ that do this much damage? Previous entries didn’t need them, why now? The good thing about ‘Rage Arts’ is that the player must have a certain amount of health to use them and if they whiff, prepare to be punished, hard.

5. Pandora System-Street Fighter X Tekken

This system has a built-in time limit. To use this system one character must be at or under 25% health. When used, one character sacrifices all of its vitality to fuel the other character and the ‘Cross Gauge’. By doing this the remaining character will be able to use their ‘EX’ and ‘Super Moves’ infinitely but their health will deplete rapidly and eventually lead to their knock out. This gives their opponent the victory and you salty for not winning. This system is both “busted” and horribly “unbalanced”.

4. X-Factor-Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3

Probably the most talked-about “come back” mechanic in fighting games. ‘X-Factor’ is a mechanic that gives your characters a huge power-boost in speed, recovery, power, and chip damage. This mechanic could be activated as ‘X-Factor’ level 1, 2, or 3; though, level 3 is where you want to activate it because of it last the longest. To add onto this, certain are simply God-like when it comes to ‘X-Factor’. These characters are ‘Vergil’, ‘Phoenix’, ‘Zero’, ‘Akuma’, and ‘Wesker’. Just made these characters absolutely “busted”. These characters were the anchors of many teams.

3. Sparking-Dragonball Fighter Z

Similar to ‘X-Factor’, ‘Sparking’ pretty much does everything that the previous mentioned “come back” mechanic does. Activating this mechanic at level 3 makes the chosen become nearly impossible and gives them everything that ‘X-Factor’ does. This mechanic is also “busted”.

2. Fatal Blow-Mortal Kombat 11

This mechanic is very similar to Tekken 7‘s ‘Rage Art’ in the sense that it is an easy activated ‘Super’ combo that can only be activated when at a certain health percentage. The difference is, and this is what makes it number two on this list, ‘Fatal Blow’ can be used again even if you whiff the move. It just needs time to recharge, a short amount of time. With some characters, this move is impossible to punish, like ‘Erron Black’ who can activate his ‘Fatal Blow’ from full-screen’. Beyond those aspects, this move does 30% to 45%, but players can lower the damage by mashing the correct button. This ‘Super’ should be nerfed for some characters to balance it out.

1. Reversal Edge-Soul Calibur VI

Fans of the Souls series like to flaunt that the sixth installment is the best but the game has its flaws. This game is extremely similar to Soul Cal II except it is a lot more simplified. The mechanic that makes this true is the ‘Reversal Edge’ system. When players have a way to block pretty much any move in the game with their own move that turns the game into a rock, paper, scissors fight, we got a problem. ‘Reversal Edge’ takes away the rewarding feeling of gaining the upper hand, committing to risky combo options, and potential damage. You can even counter throws with the system. Why is it a thing? I don’t know. Other mechanics of the game have been simplified as well, like throw teching, and parrying. Both of which were harder in Soul Cal II. ‘Reversal Edge’ is not a mechanic that should be used in fighting games.

Again, just because these mechanics are irritating, “broken”, or “busted” doesn’t mean that these games are. Clearly, they are not since most of the games on this list going to featured at EVO 2019 this coming weekend. Which mechanic on this list do you think is the worst, take our poll below.

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