Best Fighting Game of 2016 - ArticleEvan Norris , posted on 03 January 2017 / 10,680 Views
After Chicago-based NetherRealm Studios took top prize for fighting game in 2015, Japanese studios returned in force, capturing all of the shortlisted slots in 2016. Arc System Works is responsible for two games in contention, both gorgeously animated and mechanically rich — BlazBlue: Central Fiction and Guilty Gear Xrd - Revelator-. Bandai Namco, which had previously assisted Nintendo on Super Smash Bros., lent its support to Nintendo again with Pokkén Tournament. Finally, Capcom released the latest in its evergreen fighting franchise: Street Fighter V.
BlazBlue: Central Fiction
Guilty Gear Xrd -Revelator-
Street Fighter V
Console fans had long clamored for a Pokémon fighting game, and in March 2016 they got one on WiiU. Produced by industry veterans Masaaki Hoshino (SoulCalibur) and Katsuhiro Harada (Tekken) and developed by Bandai Namco, Pokkén Tournament is the rare genre mash-up that works.
One of the more remarkable features of Pokkén Tournament is its phase system, in which players experience two unique points of view throughout a match. The first POV is Field Phase, which looks a lot like the behind-the-back third-person perspective in Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tekaichi. The second is Duel Phase, which is much closer to the 2D perspective of games like Street Fighter. It's an interesting gameplay wrinkle that opens up a lot of variety and strategy for players, and sets Pokkén apart from the crowd.
Boasting 16 playable characters, 30 support Pokémon, offline/online multiplayer modes, and some light RPG elements for the Pokémon faithful, Pokkén Tournament is the real deal. It's also the best fighting game of 2016.
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