Virtua Fighter 2

Play Virtua Fighter 2 Sega Genesis Online Emulator in Browser

When asked about the series that have shaped the fighting genre of video games the most, I immediately answer Virtua Fighter. But these series have done more than simply shape the ‘beat-em-up’ genre as we know it; it has also been a constant innovator in terms of graphical breakthroughs. With the release of virtually every game, graphical limitations have been pushed farther and farther back. The first Virtua Fighter, released in 1993, was the very first game in the world to present to the player the ability to move around a 3-D environment, battling another fighter and also be in danger of falling out of the limited arena.

What really sets Virtua Fighter apart from popular fighting series such as the brutal Mortal Kombat and VF’s 3-D modern (but distant) brother Tekken, however, is its realism. The first game presented to us eight remarkably ‘real’ characters – from Japanese kung fu student Akira Yuki to American Jeet Kune Do expert Jacky Bryant, Chinese kung-fu hotshot Pai Chan and Australian Pancratium master Jeffry McWild, all the characters had a solid background and as such felt much more real than the head-chopping or supernatural MK and Tekken inductees. Trademark number two was the simple yet innovative style of play. Players only had three buttons – Guard, Punch and Kick – to use in which to pull off their moves, and this gave the gameplay a depth that set it apart from other beat-em-ups and made button-mashing simply unfeasible. This leads us to the third trademark; the style of fighting. Each character had a unique fighting style, all of which – and this is the key factor – were shaped after actual fighting styles in our world. There were no exaggerated moves; each move from each fighter felt extremely believable. Each had their own strengths and weaknesses, but any gamer could take up any character of his or her choice and really work them until they became masters. Different techniques for different characters, in short. This gave Virtua Fighter not only a sophisticated element, but also a historical one, connectable to our world.

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