Saturday, 9 September 2017

Real Fighter (PC)

If you go back and play the original Virtua Fighter, you'll find a pretty fun game, and I'm you'll also agree that though the character models and textures are simple, there's a lot of life in them, and the animation in particular is more lifelike and realistic than any fighting game that had come before it. Back in the early-mid 1990s, however, I didn't live near any arcades, nor was I rich enough to have a 32X or a Saturn. So I'd see still screenshots of SEGA's fighting game, and wonder why all the writers were losing their minds over what looked like two piles of boxes engaging in combat.

I bring all this up to make something clear to you: you might look at the screenshots of Real Fighter in this review and assume that it's a similar scenario, that it looks bad in still pictures, but in motion it takes on a whole new life. You would be very wrong to assume this. In fact, Real Fighter actually looks worse in motion than it does in still screenshots. The characters look only very vaguely human at the best of times, their fighting stances look ridiculous and when they move, it's something akin to someone picking up an action figure and seeing how far in each direction every point of articulation goes, attempting to make the most impossible poses they can.

Actually playing the game isn't any better. Like Virtua Fighter, you have buttons for punch, kick and guard. Guard works exactly as you'd expect, punch will make a punch happen maybe one of every ten times you press it, and kick will usually produce something that's kind of like a kick or series of kicks. The two characters will sort of randomly flail at each other for a while, until one of them either runs out of health or falls off the stage. None of this is helped by the camera, that changes angles completely at random, presumably in an ill-fated attempt at being cinematic.

I might be being a little too harsh on Real Fighter, since it is, after all, Korea's first ever 3D fighting game (as far as I can tell, it might also be the only Korean 3D fighting game, as all the others I've seen, before and since, have been 2D), but it's just an ugly, boring waste of time. Don't bother playing it, except for reasons of historical curiosity.

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