Skullgirls PC Somehow Actually Happening

By Ben Barrett on August 3rd, 2013 at 2:00 pm.

The first time we spoke about Skullgirls PC was now well over a year ago. Which is odd, given the ladies-only tag-team fighter wasn’t meant to be getting much more than a port. Then an update in February brought news that it was still happening, but had changed developer and had a new spec to add more features. Since then, the source of that post has been removed for unknown reasons. But here we are: Skullgirls is now available to pre-order on Steam, which gives access to the closed beta, before release on August 22nd.

According to the community page patches are hitting thick and fast, including an entire revamp of the games infinite prevention system which stops combos getting out of hand. Since our last check-in with the game, there’s been a successful indiegogo to fund DLC development for more characters and stages. This also seems to have allowed some early-early-access to the PC version. Meanwhile, original studio Reverge Labs seem to have dropped off the map after a post in Autumn of last year saying they were no longer involved with Skullgirls development. Creators Alex Ahad and Mike Zaimont, along with a number of other staff, were let go to start the company now working on the game, Lab Zero.

All very odd, but what’s important is you can pick up and play Skullsgirls now for £11.99.

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74 Comments »

  1. Creeping Death says:

    It’s strange it has taken so long for the preorder to reach Steam. I swear it’s been available for preorder on GamersGate for months now.

    • grechzoo says:

      that pre-order was Gamersgate hoping blindly it was coming. like amazon speculative release dates.

      Steam only put it up when they knew 100% it was greenlit and ready.

      • Kaira- says:

        Skullgirls wasn’t Greenlit, was it? There’s no mention on the store page about it, at least.

      • sabishi_daioh says:

        PC Skullgirls was announced officially quite a while back when they announced the color DLC to help fund it. Then the IGG campaign was giving away beta access to it, which seems like a while back by now (but probably isn’t.) I don’t know why steam waited so long to put a page up. Hate Plus is out in 2 weeks but there appears to be no page for it yet either.

  2. Michael Fogg says:

    I’d rather practice guitar chords than combos of fighting games. The same kind of muscle memory training…

    • grechzoo says:

      Hah,

      Yeah I luckily already know guitar. And combos are more about timing.

      Also you are missing the main draw of fighting games: The thrill of out thinking, out reacting and out executing your oponent in half a second to destroy their will and take the win.

      That moment when you know in your heart what they are about to do before they do it, and punish them for it with the best damage your character can possible do. I dont play any other competative online game, but SF4 and fighting games are just made for me for some reason.

      Anyway Skullgirls, is a great game, with full hand drawn animation that looks beautiful, and a deep gameplay system. Cant wait to dive into it, hope the online community thrives like the PC SF4 crows still does.

      Now im just hoping for King of Fighter 13. :)

      • Deadly Habit says:

        KoF 13 does have a Steam database entry, so hopefully we’ll be seeing that soon.
        http://steamdb.info/app/222940/

        • DerNebel says:

          Do you know if they’ll be updating the netcode? It was abysmal on the consoles iirc.

          • Wedge says:

            It’s SNK, so the answer is no, every time all the time. They have never once released a game with competent netcode. Which is a shame, because KoF is utterly pointless with any degree of lag, since the game is extremely fast paced.

      • DerNebel says:

        I doubt you really couldn’t get better at guitar if you spend all day practicing it :)

        I don’t really see the comparison here. A guitar is not just execution, it’s a musical instrument and an expressive outlet. A fighting game can be like that in some ways, but is at it’s core a competition, a challenge, well, a fight. You play guitar to make music, you play fighting games for the satisfaction of getting good, of competing and winning. Playing guitar is about showing the world what’s in your mind, playing fighting games is about reading your opponent’s.

        That you happen to move your fingers in complicated patterns in both seems to be a pretty weak point. Might as well say “I’d rather practice guitar chords than play video games.”. Why can’t we do both?

    • Chris D says:

      Perhaps closer to learning a scale if I was going to be picky but I kind of agree. To me learning how and when to use the moves is far more interesting than simply learning how to execute them. It seems like an artificial barrier in the way of the more interesting part of the game.

      That said, not all fighting games are equal in this regard. I could never get on with Street Fighter IV as there just seems to be too high a barrier before you’re allowed to actually play the game. Mortal Kombat is far more forgiving in that regard although its burning ambition to appeal the worst excesses of adolescent boys is a bit off-putting.

      • grechzoo says:

        Yeah, the difficulty to reward ratio is harsh.

        But SF4 is the best fighting game of this generation. MK by comparison within the fighting game community is kind of disregarded, because it really isn’;t as deep, creative, or fun as SF4 when you truly get past the difficulty curve.

        I compare it to the Paradox grand strategy games. very hard to get into (although less time needed than FGs) but the depth and reward they give makes it one of the most unique and rewarding experiences in gaming.

        • Chris D says:

          I don’t know if I quite go with the Paradox strategy comparison. The difference being that with those games you might not know what you should be doing but once you know it isn’t that hard to do it. With Street Fight IV you may know all the strategies and timings but still not physically be able to do what you want to do. And, unlike with playing guitar for example, there isn’t really any reason for that other than the designers decided they wanted to make it hard to do.

          I understand that for some people the physical mastery is part of the enjoyment but for me it’s an artifiical hurdle to cross before I can actually get to the part of the game I enjoy.

          Each to their own, though. Mostly I’d like to see a greater selection of fighting games making it over to PC, although I’d probably settle for just the Virtua Fighter series.

          • grechzoo says:

            it is no way an artificial hurdle.

            its just the way fighting games have been designed and balanced since their inception. and that hurdle is there to reward, not to needlessly frustrate.

            They didn’t decide to just make it hard when developing SF4, its how fighting games were always designed. and SF4 would never change those mechanics without sacrificing the hardcore audience that would keep their games going for what is now five years strong.

            if you dont believe its worth you time, then that’s 100% fair, but trust me, it is not a design flaw. it is a true design masterstroke, because it allows way more depth and reward to your experience. you dont want a gun that aims for you if you are looking to be a great marksman. you dont want to be able to mash out combos blindly if you want to truly understand and be great at a fighting game.

            the downside is the amount of time needed to invest of course, and that where i totally see your point. its a ludricous amount of work. but there is equal reward to it, even though it may be impossible to see from a beginners perspective.

          • Bremze says:

            Ironically VF is one of the (if not the) most execution heavy fighting game series.

          • Chris D says:

            But depth isn’t related to physical difficulty. Depth would be a function of the interactions between different moves and different fighters. It makes no difference to depth whether I have to press a single button to execute a move or whether I have to rotate the stick one and a half times then press three buttons simultaneously with split second precision. (And actually this isn’t how fighting games have always been designed, the early ones were designed so everything was done by moving the joystick in one direction and a single button press: Way of the Exploding Fist, Yie Ar Kung Fu, Barbarian, IK+)

            It’s true that if you want to add more moves then you need to get more complicated, but only a little more, Street Fighter goes way beyond what’s necessary for that.

            I agree that you don’t want to make button mashing too effective, but you don’t have to rely on physical difficulty for that, you can balance other factors like recovery time or countering so that the player who is able to predict their opponent and pick the appropriate tool for the job will beat the one who just spams the kick button.

            My favourite fighting game has been Virtua Fighter 4 and I don’t think there are too many who would argue that lacks depth and the difficult combos are certainly there if that’s what you want, but where I think the difference between that and SF4 lies is that the basic moves give you enough tools to be competitive at least up to a certain level, with SF4 it seemed you have to pretty much learn everything up front or go home.

          • Ringwraith says:

            I have played both Persona 4 Arena and Street Fighter IV, and the former is much easier to get into, despite being a more combo-heavy game than SF. Mostly as it seemingly designed with complete novices in mind, as no input is harder than two quarter-circles (and there’s some nice grace period on the input for it, so you don’t need split-second timing) and there’s even a short auto-combo everyone has by mashing one button a lot. Though only having four attack buttons instead of six helps.
            Shame it’s not on PC really.

          • Baines says:

            grechzoo, it is a hurdle that is accepted in no small part due to its artificial exclusion. Yes, there is a gameplay mechanic to the risk/reward system, and even skilled players will sometimes miss even a simple combo. But these systems are accepted and praised for darker reasons.

            People like to feel special, and they like to feel rewarded. Physical execution barriers feed those desires.

            Without actually getting better at out-thinking your opponents, you can get an advantage just by continually practicing combos. And you see a reward for that time spent. Your hours of work translate directly to being able to consistently perform longer and better combos and techniques. (Plus you can do this solo, which is important in an age where arcades have become a non-factor and people don’t get together in the same physical location as much.)

            And there is an exclusive/elitist aspect to execution hurdles. People who “dedicate” themselves to a game have an advantage over those that don’t spend that time practicing combo mechanics. You are “special” because you spent 20 hours a week practicing your character’s BnBs and your hit confirm super, while that other guy who plays three hours a week is some scrub who doesn’t even know how to combo his super off of a low light kick, or how to perform his corner infinite.

            That’s why there is backlash against attempts to lower the execution barrier. Lowering the execution barrier takes away that hurdle that keeps the “casual” players in their “place” and takes away the reward for putting in hours of solo combo practice. It takes away the “specialness”, and people want to feel special and feel rewarded for their dedication and time spent.

          • timethor says:

            Baines, the games are about mastery of various mechanics. Spacing, reaction, and execution. If the games only featured “out thinking” your opponents, they’d devolve into glorified rock-paper-scissors matches.

            Yes, the player who has put in a lot of time and can instantaneously react with the right counter, or who knows the exact spacing of all the attacks and baits his opponent into an attack that wiffs by 2 pixels, is going to have a large advantage. Just like the player who knows the timing (and the opportunity!) to land a big, damaging combo. And yes, landing that big combo, or wiff-punishing that baited attack will feel good, just as mastering anything feels good. I feel awesome when I nail a fast run through a tricky tone-ladder on my guitar, even though I’m never going to use it for anything useful. That’s not some kind of dark secret.

            If you dislike games where mastery of “dumb” things is an advantage, that’s fine. But it also probably means fighting games aren’t for you. Just as say… Quake isn’t for you. Sure, it involves lots of thinking, but it also involves hitting those railgun shots (something that also feels awesome, btw). Fighting games, and shooters, and plenty of other genres, are not pure thinking-based games. They’re not intended to be. If you feel that “out thinking your opponent” is the only “non dark” form of competition, I’d recommend chess or civilisation (although there the sad guys who want to feel special by putting in the hours studying tactics and build orders will also have an advantage..)

          • Zyrusticae says:

            timethor, I think you’re being completely disingenuous here.

            There’s a huge, ENORMOUS difference between simply learning how to do combos and use your character’s moveset versus the kind of crazy execution barriers present in Street Fighter IV. In fact, there are a number of fighters that almost entirely lack those kinds of execution barriers – Soul Calibur in particular comes to mind here, as a game where execution takes a backseat to simply knowing your character’s moveset and how to use it to its fullest. There are no lengthy combos or 1-frame links in the game, with exception for a small handful of moves with Just Frame properties (but they are exceptions), and that’s just the way I like it.

            Just because you can’t stand Street Fighter’s emphasis on timed cancels and 1-2 frame links doesn’t mean you suddenly hate all fighters. That’s a terrible argument that should never be made, pure and simple.

          • timethor says:

            My argument was that a game like SF4 has multiple interacting types of challenges, and that combo-execution is one of them. Spacing, reaction, and finally out-thinking (or out-guessing..) your opponent are (some of) the others. The person I was replying to seemed to indicate that only out-thinking the opponent is a “noble” way of competing: any practiced mastery (that includes spacing and reacting on time with the proper attacks) was apparently something only elitists who want to feel special engage in.

            You can certainly make a fun fighting game that has a trivial (or non-existent) combo system, but it might lose some of the depth and certainly lose part of the challenge. But if split second reactions and mastering the spacing of your attacks are also removed, what remains is not something I’d call a fighting game.

        • Kitsunin says:

          Ugh…Street Fighter IV. I’ve spent about four hours now in its training mode, and I can now safely say that execution in it is stupid. Like mentally braindead designer levels of stupid. “You can HP into Hayate, and to be even so-so with Makoto you need to be able to, but you only get a 10th of a second because fuck you we decided we wanted you to have to practice for hours on end! If you hit the button too late, rather than being blocked because your opponent left hitstun (Maybe), nothing will happen also because fuck you!”

          I compare this to Skullgirls (On topic!) and I just don’t get it. You only drop combos in SG because you used the wrong timing, and the physics didn’t agree with that, so your opponent leaves hitstun out or you miss. The rules are very reliable: light into medium into hard into special into super, with certain cases where you can chain lp into lk for instance; and you can chain at any point after the hit. I know the difference is because Skullgirls uses chains while SF uses links primarily, but it’s just so much less frustrating. Combos fail because you missed or your opponent left hitstun, not because fuck you you only get 1/30 second to hit the button or nothing happens.

          • grechzoo says:

            your ignorance is astounding.

            I will just say that you are talkign about systems and gameplay you have no idea about. and politely ask you not to offend developers who have been perfecting an art for decades, and have made some of the best designed games in existence.

            a game is not badly designed or broken, because you cant do things in a few hours. some games require more of an investment, and in return provide you with way more reward.

            there are easier fighting games you can try, instead of badmouthing the one you dont want to learn.

          • Sami H says:

            grechzoo, just because Capcom have been making fighters for decades doesn’t mean they get it right all the time (SF4 Sagat anyone?). And 1 frame links are just stupid, especially with autoguard and invincible start-up reversals.

            MK is “disregarded” by the fighting game community for a number of reasons. 1) the FGC community consists of an awful lot of Capcom players who play nothing but Capcom. 2) The recent MK game is the first MK game in years that was viable as a tourney game. A big community built up around that game, but sadly has partially died out due to the developers not patching the game (it has some BIG balance issues with a couple of characters) for too long. For a new scene outside of the typical Capcom affair it managed to get some big numbers at tourneys before trailing off. 3) It has a block button, and everyone knows fighting games must be back-to-block or else it instantly sucks.

            Also, writing the new MK off as not having as much depth as other fighting games is daft, especially when people are still discovering new tech for an old game. As for execution, I present to you top level Kabal play (he may be the best character in the game, but that’s only if its backed up be phenomenal execution and amazing reads).

            edit: btw I played SF4 (to AE 2012) and MK9 semi-seriously (i.e. I know the games, but do not have “pro” skills)

          • maximiZe says:

            mad bcuz bad

          • Kitsunin says:

            I’m sorry, but being given 1/30 or even 1/60 of a second to hit the button or your attack doesn’t work (Sometimes) is STUPID stupid stupid stupid. It’s the most arbitrary way possible to make a game more difficult. That’s like if you had to create units in Starcraft along with the rhythm of the music: Yeah it’d increase the skill ceiling, but it’s stupid and would detract from what makes the game good.

            Strategic thinking, reflexes, and yomi, does anyone honestly think execution is a core part of fighting games? I know it adds some depth but when you get to SF IV levels of execution difficulty, having to practice for hours just to get one move to go into an other since the game arbitrarily decides your timing has to be in the period of a couple frames. I just can’t stand it.

          • dmodblackwolf says:

            “Ugh…Street Fighter IV. I’ve spent about four hours now in its training mode”
            Stay there.
            That’s about how much time i spend in it daily, i’m still bad at it, but i’m prepared to put the time and effort into the game. It feels great to perfect that combo, wherein skullgirls i spent about 20 mins and had a 5k damage combo with one bar for each charater on my team, that’s not really rewarding to me. I do enjoy the game however and will keep playing it, but i find it funny the example you used was HP to hyate on Makoto, when thats like one of the easist cancels(excluding low forward fireball on shotos). are you trying to link it and not cancel it?

          • timethor says:

            in SSF4, plenty of characters allow you to become better than a large percentage of online players, just by being patient and smart with simple attacks. The “challenge mode” (which is the closest thing the game has to a tutorial?) is incredibly misleading. Beyond knowing how to do your specials, your ultra, and maybe 1-2 normal->special cancels, you really don’t need any other complicated execution for a long time (until you hit a rank of say 1000 PP). And after that most characters’ combos will require 1 tricky link at most: the combos with multiple, or really hard links do just a bit more damage, but are hardly an essential part of the gameplan.

            (edit: also, just played 30 seconds of Makoto for the first time in my life, got HP X hayate on the first try >_>. I found youtube very handy (search for vesperarcade, he has the challenge vids for all characters) when trying to find out how a combo was supposed to be performed.

          • Kitsunin says:

            Perfecting a combo is…gratifying? For me, it’s the slog I have to get through before I can actually play the damn game. It’s not like SG’s combos are that easy anyways. You can get a 5k bnb in a couple hours and I think that’s fantastic! It means I only need to play for a couple hours before shifting my focus from combos to actually playing the game! Of course I’ll still suck, because only a relatively small portion of the game is execution, which is wonderful, I can learn most of the game and have fun playing it at the same time – I don’t need to spend 20 hours in training mode before I can see the silhouette of fun. However, 5k bnbs in SG might mean you won’t get bodied every time, but it’s certainly not competitive. The big thing is: Combos feel intuitive, moves come out consistently, sometimes they don’t hit, sure, but I don’t get the headache inducing (I’m serious, dealing with SFIV gives me a headache sometimes) situations where the move won’t. Come. Out. And I can’t figure out why.

            By the way…I really don’t get how a cancel and a link are different…a link means using the next move after the animation is finished while a cancel cuts off part of the animation, right? Well HPxxHayate requires you to hit the button between the active and recovery frames for the HP iirc, which was an aggravating as hell thing for me to figure out regardless of whether that makes it a link or a cancel. I finally got it down though, but not long before deciding I can’t stand SFIV’s combos.

            I can’t fathom spending hours in the practice mode of a game every day, just to play it for fun online. That’s ridiculous to me. But I guess if people enjoy that then I can’t fault them for it. I just wish there was a popular fighting game where execution isn’t an enormous wall between being bodied and having a little bit of fun: The other game being MvC3 where execution is way easier, but mah boi, you better enjoy sitting through 20 second yawnfest “Hype” ToDs.

          • PikaBot says:

            There is absolutely no reason to torture yourself in training mode at the level you’re at. I should know, I’m at around the same level. It’s not doing you any good and you’re much better off learning fundamentals and how your character’s abilities interact with other character’s – things you can’t learn when the enemy is just a punching bag. Even if you can memorize those big combos and execute them in training mode, doing so under live fire scenario is a completely different kettle of fish.

            My advice is to pick a character (Ryu or Ken are the simplest) and first do as far into their Challenges as you can. Odds are somewhere around the middle you’ll hit one where the link just seems utterly impossible. Stop there. You only did this to get a feel for performing their specials, supers, ultras, and really basic combos. Now, go to versus mode and start drilling yourself against the AI. Play against a random character. If you lose, keep playing against that character until you beat them. If you win ten times in a row, increase the AI difficulty. Once you’re winning against Hard AI, you’re probably ready to take it online.

            This won’t prepare you perfectly – the AI doesn’t react quite like a person, and it flat-out sucks at some characters. But it’ll teach you your character’s safe and effective ranges and how to use their abilities without boring you to tears, and in the process you’ll almost certainly stumble onto some decent basic combos on your own. And these ones you’ll actually be able to use because you’ll have learned them under combat conditions. No, you won’t have learned the huge massive damage combos…but honestly you don’t need them, because the people you’re playing against won’t be able to do them either.

          • Baines says:

            I remember fighting game fans flipping out when they thought that Ono would make Street Fighter 4 friendly to casual players. A vocal contingent of the fighting game community don’t want fighters to appeal to casual players. That attitude has been a problem with the fighting game community for many years, and has assisted in the fighting game fanbase shrinking. Fighting game fans even spent years actively driving away players, even as fighting games were in a decline.

            SF4 had stuff like focus attack dash cancelling to appease the hardcore crowd that would have otherwise have rejected the game. I believe that hurt Capcom’s attempt to revive fighting games, and hurts the fanbase in the long run.

          • stillunverified says:

            All of the moaning about execution is getting old, it’s overblown garbage mostly spouted by people who dont even play the games, you dont NEED the hard shit in low level/online games, ESPECIALLY not in fucking SF, it’s like complaining that pro-level micro in Starcraft is hard, no fucking shit, but you dont need it.

    • KDR_11k says:

      I’d suggest Divekick then and this is not a “lol noob gb2cowclickers” recommendation. Divekick is designed to have the mindgames and tactics of a fighting game with extremely simple controls (two buttons, not even a stick) so that people can enjoy the actual core of fighting games without having to wade through the jungle of learning the controls and basic actions first.

      • JackShandy says:

        Another suggestion: This might not be what he’s looking for, but Yomi is a card game made to emulate fighting games.

        http://boardgamegeek.com/boardgame/43022/yomi

        It’s got most of the core mind-game strategy of a fighting game, but as a card game there’s absolutely no reflexes or muscle memory required. It cuts out everything but the “Yomi” – figuring out what your opponent is going to do before they do it.

  3. grechzoo says:

    Ben,

    The original developers are still working on this game. Just not under Reverge Labs, but Mike Z the games director and cheif designer, along with most of its animators and coders are working on their own to continually upgrade and build content for the game. (new characters incoming.)

    Please correct the article as it gives the impression this game is not being worked on by the original creators, which couldn’t be less true.

    • Ben Barrett says:

      I didn’t consider a reading of the article without clicking through. Slight modification made to make it more clear. Thanks for your comment.

      • grechzoo says:

        No worries, glad i could help :)

        nice to see a fighting game on RPS :)

  4. wodin says:

    Always was and stiil; am rubbish at beat em ups..could never remember the combos or even pull them off..I just mashed all the buttons and shoved the sticked all over the place hoping for the best or just do the basic kick punch jump moves..as I said I’m rubbish at them.

  5. DrGonzo says:

    I’m surprised rps didn’t have something to say about the character designs. Does seem to be a lot of cleavage going on there. Still, there are nowhere near enough beat en ups on pc, and mortal kombat also had insanely sexualised female characters.

    • JackShandy says:

      Sure, most of the characters are sexualized, but I’m glad that RPS doesn’t feel the need to rail against that in every post. I don’t think there’s anything really wrong with the cheesecake on show here. I like the idea of an all-women cast, too.

      • DrGonzo says:

        I’m glad they don’t go on about every game with cleavage, but if they were going to say something about any game, this one would seem appropriate.

        • JackShandy says:

          Possibly it’s because the lead animator is drawing to suit her own tastes. It’s not a marketing decision made to reach as many teenage dudebro’s as possible. It comes from the heart, and that’s good for gaming and good for the soul.

        • bill says:

          This game would not be appropriate at all.

          Because RPS isn’t railing against the existence of boobs. They are railing against the casual, lazy and stereotypical objectification of women that seems so prevalent in gaming. That doesn’t seem to apply to this game.

      • fish99 says:

        I guess it depends on who is posting.

    • DerNebel says:

      Please.

      I know RPS can get pretty rabid about such things, but I have enough respect for them to not be THAT stupid. Yes, there is a lot of cleavage there. Filia’s story mode starts with a panty shot. That might seem incriminating. It also starts with the dragonparasite posing as her hair tearing a pervert a new one. Cerebella is a circus artist in her intentionally revealing costume. Valentine is a brutally bloody “sexy nurse” stereotype. Aaaaand that’s about it for sexualising. Ms. Fortune literally pulls off her head and uses it in battle. Painwheel is a little girl stuck in her own private hell plus millions of sharp blades. Double is a freaky servant of the Skullgirl, posing as the rest of the cast. Peacock echoes oldstyle slapstick cartoons and Squigly is a nice little zombie girl with a snake going through her head. Oh yeah, Parasoul has some kind of “foreign agent from a James Bond movie” going on.

      This game just has a unique artstyle. That artstyle happens to include jiggly breast and lots of cleavage on a couple of characters. The fighters in this game are neither weak nor helpless, rather to the contrary. They can handle themselves. The character design is not a weakness, it is a strength.

      The game is beyond fun, super smart and really original. Also, it is stuffed to the brim with puns, something I’d think the readership of this site would appreciate.

      • RedViv says:

        I feel like I need to mention Filia’s podginess too. Rarely do you see what actually happens when one wears stockings and one’s legs are not just muscle and bone.

    • Sami H says:

      It’s okay, MK9′s females all had man-faces anyway (or you know, a face of razor-sharp teeth) to counter the boobs.

    • RedViv says:

      The game is sexy, and aware enough to not fall into negative stereotyping or anything similar. An ensemble of copy/paste/reskin battle bathing suits as in Mortal Kombat this is not.

      (Also, no groping-moaning mini game! Yay!)

    • Phendron says:

      I guess you didn’t see Peacock.

  6. Terics says:

    Skullgirls is the game that finally got me to understand fighting games. It has a really great tutorial that teaches the basic of its genre and it just looks gorgeous. I’d recommend it to anyone, as long as they have some type of controller.

    • DerNebel says:

      I agree, the tutorial is awesome. It really takes some time to show you how you’ll go about opening people up.

      Everything is really there. Basic movement, attacking, blocking into more advanced stuff like combos, pushblocks, specials, supers and throws. Finally it finishes off with introductions to every single character so you’ll know what you’re facing.

      It also takes the time to explain mixups and such, which other FG tutorials really lack.

      • jon_hill987 says:

        Capcom seem to be learning, the SFxT tutorial is not bad… Still not as good as the excellent Skullgirls tutorial though. Oh and the Darkstalkers re-release has an OK tutorial as well IIRC.

    • Arathain says:

      This is great news. I think a lot of the ambivalence folk have about fighting games, and we’re seeing plenty of that on this thread, is the high barrier to entry. I think that’s fine- some games should be hard and technical, to give players the pleasure of mastering them, and to have a high skill ceiling.

      Where FGs do themselves no favours is how aggressively uninterested they are in teaching their systems. I mean, I love to play SFIV, because it tickles the nostalgia I picked up from SFII in my youth, and because it’s very satisfying generally. But can’t for the life of me do combos properly. The timing is precise and there are basically no visual indicators I can pick up as to when I need to press buttons- rather like playing a rhythm action game with no timing display and no music.

      I don’t think it’s too much to ask to have newcomers be thrown enough help to allow them to do cool stuff without days of trial and error practicing. I’d be a lot more interested in Skullgirls of it included something like this.

      • DerNebel says:

        Skullgirls has a really lenient chain-combo system. Just mash three buttons in a succesion, hold up forward, press three more buttons really quickly and do a super. Because of the scaling system you will get quite a lot of damage from just that, on every character. That is the beauty. Simple combos do maybe 20% less damage than huge, complicated ones.

        On top of that, the AI is really good at dealing with people who just mashes buttons, but as soon as you slow the pace down you can outwit it easily. It teaches new players to have a simple, damaging combo and playing patiently. You do need to spend time practicing, but that’s just like practising tennis, badminton, football or golf. If you expect to just sort of be good enough to play with random other players immediately, then you deserve to lose.

        • Arathain says:

          Wow, thanks!

          • grechzoo says:

            Wow is right.

            I have played for three years, am about as good as im ever going to get (dont have the reactions to get past 3.5kpp,) and have NEVER seen this before in my life. :)

    • RedViv says:

      Easy to learn, hard to master combo system, and a fitting tutorial. Yes, it’s one of the best introductions you could give people.

    • Hypocee says:

      OK, thanks. That’s what I needed to hear to give this a second chance. I was really excited for Skullgirls last year, but this new trailer looks less pretty and readable somehow, and those patch notes are all frames and states and abstruse hitboxes uggggh. If this game actually has development effort devoted to a path to understanding, it could mean there’s some kind of logic there to understand, rather than an assortment of numbers for the sake of because. Maybe.

      • JackShandy says:

        I’m going through the tutorial now, my experiences might help.

        It’s hard. Simple, clear, easy to understand, but passing the stuff it wants me to do is actually leaving me exhausted. It really clicks though: I spend ages trying to figure out how to do a move, but once I do it right the first time I find myself pulling it off effortlessly in the next tutorial. Of course, then it wants me to do it in the air, in a combo, cancelling into a super move…

        Yeah, hard, but a very satisfying sense of slow mastery.

  7. wilynumber13 says:

    That post about the PC announcement disappeared because some issue with their hosting provider ended up rolling their website back to how it was over a year ago.

  8. DerNebel says:

    DISCLAIMER: A controller of some kind is mandatory. I should know, I played Fighting Games on a keyboard for months. It’s not worth it.

    Skullgirls is amazing. For those that don’t know, it’s basically an old Marvel vs Capcom 2 pro designing his dream game, a brilliant artist contributing a unique, dark, cartoony artstyle and one of the absolute best videogame soundtrack composers delivering the music. So, the game is really well designed, beautifully animated and has the best soundtrack I’ve heard for years.

    My favourite character is a mobile, semi-flying circus artist with a huge morphing hat aiding her in battle. Another one is Ms. Fortune, a pun-loving fighter that literally pulls off her head and uses it as an extra tool independent of the main body. Painwheel, an amnesiac, tortured little girl trapped in a deadly battlesuit, flies around and turns her opponents attacks against them. Every single one of the 9 characters have their unique twists that make the game really varied.

    On top of that, you can choose how large your team is, up to three characters. The game then scales the relative health and power of the teams to make sure the match is balanced. Teams of more than one character gets access to assists which can be ANYTHING in the characters arsenal. There is a combo prevention system, giving rise to great creativity and also making sure that the one-deaths of UMvC3 simply doesn’t happen.

    The netcode is beautiful. No two ways about it. They use GGPO netcode, which ensures that the game feels almost lagless at pings way higher than other Fighting Games.

    Skullgirls is fast becoming my favourite game of the year. It is fun, deep and beautiful. It is a game to lose yourself in, to grind out, to master. It is a game for people not trying to escape from challenges, for those who actively seek challenges and revel in succeeding.

    Come join us! Now is the best time, since there are lots of newcomers online and the game is changing quite a bit for the PC release. There are also new characters being put in and they’re free if you preorder.

    • wilynumber13 says:

      Mike Z was good at Marvel 2, but I think he and most people would describe him more as a Guilty Gear pro than Marvel.

    • Totally heterosexual says:

      Mandatory? Son, I have been a keyboard warrior for 5 years now and shit works just fine.

    • crinkles esq. says:

      I played the Skullgirls demo on the console toy version, and frankly I found the fighting system terrible. Way too many long-range attacks and projectile attacks. Of course, I come more from the Tekken series than the later SF hyperspam sequels, so perhaps this game is not made for the likes of me. Countering and blocking up-close is where a fighting system really sings, but it’s difficult to even do that in this game. It just doesn’t seem very balanced.

  9. merakai says:

    The problem with Skull Girls is that no one actually plays it as a fighting game. There’s a ton of community support, but no one actually wants to play in tournaments for the game. I’ve heard some complaints about balance, or maybe high level gameplay is stagnant, but nothing concrete about why no one plays. It could also be that the game is too unforgiving towards newer players, but the art style keeps it going.

    But who knows, maybe now that it’s on the PC, it’ll give a large influx of players who haven’t had the chance to try it on the console.

    • grechzoo says:

      anything indie usually fares better with the more niche friendly pc players anyway. so it should have a more active online playerbase.

    • jon_hill987 says:

      Well the PC port is being done in conjunction with a huge balance patch. And it did make Evo this year so who knows, maybe next year.

    • wilynumber13 says:

      The first reason few “top” players play is because it wasn’t an EVO title its debut year, due to releasing too close to the date of the tournament. This gave smaller tournaments earlier in the year little reason to host the game, which hurt the game’s ability to draw publicity and gain new players.

      The second reason is that a month or so after release, a balance patch was announced that would fix a few problems the game had, but unbeknownst to the development team at that time, they were about to be laid off, so the patch never came until more than six months later. Many people either stopped playing while waiting for the patch and then didn’t pick it back up again, or had never bought it in the first place, decided they were going to wait to buy it until the patch came, and then didn’t actually buy it once the patch finally came so much later.

      There’s also the issue of it being a brand-new IP from a brand-new developer, when pretty much every game that has seen success in the competitive scene in the past decade has either come from a well-known IP (e.g. Street Fighter, Marvel, Mortal Kombat, Tekken, Injustice (DC Comics)) or a well-known fighting game developer (e.g. BlazBlue and Persona both developed by Arc System Works who are well-known for Guilty Gear)

  10. Radiant says:

    Skullgirls is great but holy moly check out the soundtrack.
    It’s fantastic

    Also worth checking out is a free game from china called King Of Combat aka Xuan Dou Zhi Wang [!]
    Check it out:
    http://youtu.be/zJGeDFA9teg

    MAN HAS A GUN.

  11. Delusibeta says:

    tl;dr edition on the whole Reverge/Lab Zero mess: it all boils down to a lawsuit. Specifically, Autumn Games (the publisher) and Konami (who’s only here for XBLA publishing duties) got sued by Def Jam over some unfulfilled promises over Def Jam Rapstar (AFAIK, banks may also be involved). This prevented Autumn and Konami from handing over any money, which means Reverge essentially dissolved due to no money. With Autumn’s blessing, the ex-Reverge guys reformed under the banner of Lab Zero, developed and released a balance patch, signed a deal with Marvellous AQL for money for the PC version, run the aforementioned IGG fund raiser and things are finally looking up.

    And the lawsuit? As I understand it, Konami lost and has to pay out everyone involved, and Autumn fired off a countersuit, presumably chasing after lost revenue. Dunno how the countersuit worked out, but that’s the story in a nutshell.