Universal Fighting Game Guide: Understanding Combos Systems Part 2 – Putting It All Together

Welcome back to part 2 of a mini-series of combo systems posts within In Third Person’s Universal Fighting Game Guide. Part 1 dealt with the elements that make up a combo system in most fighting games, which you can find here. This post will take those fundamental elements and try to outline a process you can use to help you establish a knowledge and execution foundation to build your combo abilities on.

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Universal Fighting Game Guide: Understanding Combo Systems Part 1 – The Elements


If you’ve ever had any sort of interest in fighting games, you’ve probably stumbled across a combo video or two. They’re very cool to watch, and you may have even taken it upon yourself to be as good as the person in the video by going to a guide and learning how to read an execute something like this from BlazBlue:

214D -> B (FC), 623D, dash, 3C xx 236236B, 214D -> C, 5C 2C 4D -> D, [j.C x n] [dj.C x n] xx j.214B – 50% Heat

While you may be tempted to learn the big fancy combos the moment you start playing a new fighting game, it’s not the best way to level yourself up. Mastering the physical execution of big combos is nice, but learning the big combos without knowing the context behind them first is like trying to run without learning how to walk. This is post 1 in a two-part mini-series about understanding combo systems. Part 1 will deal with the elements that make up most combo systems, while part 2 will discuss how to put context to those elements to shape your offensive capabilities. Let’s get moving with part 1!

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Getting Hype For Marvel vs. Capcom 3


I was an epic fail at Marvel vs. Capcom 2. When that game first came out, i was in the midst of my 14-year fighting game moratorium. I did play it here and there at the arcade, but my primitive Street Fighter II skills did not translate well into a game involving teams, air dashes and crazy super moves. Of the few fighting games I did actually play during my moratorium, it was this one that made me say I had no reason to come back to the genre, because I’m way too behind the curve to catch up.

In 2009, the game came out on XBOX Live Arcade and PlayStation Network. I gave it a second chance, now that I was a little older and definitely wiser in regards to fighting games. Even with my Street Fighter IV experience, Marvel vs. Capcom 2 was still rocket science to me and probably always will be.

With all that going against it, why then am I excited for its long-awaited sequel, Marvel vs. Capcom 3: Fate of Two Worlds?

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Pick Up Post: Nintendo Wii Fightstick By Hori

Wii owners with a fighting game itch have very little to scratch it. While Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is awesome and there are no shortage of Street Fighter games on Virtual Console, it still pales in comparison to the plethora of fighting games on the XBOX 360 and Playstation 3. On top of that, joystick options are limited too. All Wii owners have are the Mad Catz SE fightstick packed in with Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, the Hori Wii fightstick and the Intec Combat Arcade Stick, which I don’t trust one bit.

I still want the Mad Catz stick, but in my country I can only get it with Tatsunoko vs. Capcom; a game I already have. Instead, I grabbed the Nintendo Wii Fightstick by Hori. My experience with Hori has been hit and miss, but after putting it through its paces, this one thankfully is in the former category.

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Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: I Take It For A Ride

A few weeks ago, I vented my thoughts on the possibility of me purchasing Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars. I was interested in the game, but maybe not enough for me to buy it. However, it was also an opportunity as a core Wii owner to show the world that I will buy hardcore games if companies put them out on the platform. This moral dilemma also hit me shortly before I lost my job. With all of the things stacked against it, Tatsunoko vs. Capcom seemed out of my grasp for the time being.

Tatsunoko vs. Capcom – Time to Get Pringles?

I don’t think I’ve ever been torn about a game like I have been for Tatsunoko vs. Capcom. With this game, I can put together a fairly solid case for why I don’t want it. I’m not a “Versus” series style of fighting game player. My only experience with this style of fighting game was with the XBOX Live release of Marvel vs. Capcom 2. After years of wanting to test my chops in one of the most popular fighting games of all-time, I finally came to the conclusion that I’m awful at that style of game. I end up mindlessly mashing buttons and randomly doing traditional Street Fighter special move command inputs and hoping for the best. It’s cool to see all the flashy action on screen, but I didn’t find the fighting satisfying enough for me to commit to getting better. My only experience online with Marvel vs. Capcom 2 was an absolute disaster, where I didn’t win a match and at times, didn’t connect a single hit on my opponent.