Soul Calibur 6 Tiers

Schoolgirl R. Mika, Sakura and even Lili... Amala's fighting game cosplay is playfully gorgeous

We venture all the way to Berlin today to share with you a collection of charming photos from a passionate cosplayer by the name of Amala.

The German player/cosplayer gave us a bit of her backstory along with some of her plans for the not too distant future. "I've enjoyed fighting games since I was a child, and started with Street Fighter 2 and Dead or Alive 2," she shared.

"I've cosplayed since I was eight years old, usually making them by myself like in the case of Sakura and R.Mika. At the moment I am working on some more fighting game cosplays. Menat from SF5 is almost finished, and more R. Mika, Tekken 7 characters and even one BlazBlue will follow soon."

You'll notice in many of these that not only do Amala and her talented photographer, Icecatty, snap quality shots, they often place these characters in appropriate settings as Mike explores a shopping mall after school and Sakura poses in a Japanese garden.

You can see more of Amala on both Twitter and Instagram. Check out more of Icecatty's photography on her Instagram.

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Two important Street Fighter 5 Season 4 balance changes I want to see for Zeku

As we draw nearer to the end of the Capcom Pro Tour next month, fans await information on the next Season of Street Fighter 5. Though Season 4 has not yet been confirmed, history dictates that another batch of DLC characters and balance changes is inbound, and the expectation is that we'll learn more at Capcom Cup 2018 on December 14th through the 16th in Las Vegas, Nevada.

Today we're putting aside DLC character requests and delving into what kinds of balance changes could potentially take shape if/when the Season 4 update arrives.

Last time, I discussed two important balance changes I'd like to see made to Abigail in Street Fighter 5 Season 4. This time I'm tackling another one of my characters — Zeku.

While Abigail is a character that I can admit is in need of some nerfs — in my article I included one nerf and one buff I think he should see — Zeku is a bit of a different case. In this piece, I will be talking about two buffs that I feel should be given to the stance-changing fighter.

Generally speaking, Zeku isn't considered high up on the Street Fighter 5 tier list — personally, I think he's around mid-tier and a handful of players have been seeing success with him in tournament as of late. That having been said, I believe mainly buffs are in order for this character.

Let's dive right into the changes!

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It's time to stop shaming online warriors and start teaching fighting games properly; plus Bonchan fibs, the Murderface has his own demon and more

Well that headline is the most social justice-y thing I think I've ever written and I'll be promptly taking a long shower after this, but there is some valid discussion to be had about the way fighting gamers view online warriors.

Catalyst and I further that conversation on the latest episode of the EventHubs Podcast and get to a myriad of other topics as well.

I expand more upon my recent article regarding the way fighting games widely fail to teach players true fundamentals and how that very well could be a significant reason why this genre fails to keep up with others in the eSports world.

FOX|Tokido is by far and away the most consistent Street Fighter 5 player this year, but it seems Mouz|ProblemX has his number as the reigning EVO champion has made quick work of the Murderface on multiple occasions now.

There are more than a few other topics we tackle, and you can find timestamps below if you want to jump around. Enjoy the 25th episode of the EH Podcast (thank you so much for supporting us thus far) and please drop your feedback in the comments after you give it a listen.

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Resets, unblockables, and perfectly timed counters — Raptr shows the optimal way to assassinate foes with Hit in Dragon Ball FighterZ

When Dragon Ball FighterZ was first released, Hit was regarded as one of the game's stronger fighters. These days, he's clearly overshadowed by the likes of Cell, Bardock, Kid Buu, and Android 16 in the tournament scene.

Still, the best play in the world — FOX|SonicFOX — has been known to utilize Hit despite the combatant's learning curve. Played properly, Hit is able to compete at the highest level against any character.

Recently, Xuses uploaded a video that highlights a player called Raptr (no, that's not a misspelling of the word "Raptor").

His team features Hit on point. He also utilizes Super Saiyan Goku for the beam assist and Ultimate Gohan as an anchor. Aspiring Hit users can surely learn a thing or two from watching his gameplay.

Notably, he's constantly setting up unblockable resets and 50/50s in combination with assists. Turning the tables on him is difficult thanks to Hit's counter. Supposedly, Raptr might be attending a Saga Event in Australia so we may get a chance to see him compete.

Just to get you started, here's a couple of cool exchanges that Raptr was able to set up against his opponent:

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Poll results: Which characters are you interested in playing for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate?

Update: The results are in! See how our readers voted after the jump. There were over 5,000 votes submitted in total.

Earlier: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be released on December 7th. Once that date arrives, we'll all be faced with a very difficult question. "Who should I main?"

This game's roster is absolutely massive. Counting Piranha Plant, there are 75 playable characters that we currently know about.

Every fighter that has ever been playable in the Super Smash Bros. series is making a return this time. Hence, "everyone is here." This means that those that really enjoyed playing Young Link, Ice Climbers, Snake, Wolf, and others will finally get to reunite with their favorite combatants.

While the newcomers aren't as plentiful this time around, there are some pretty cool additions. These include the likes of the Inkling, Ridley, Simon Belmont, and King K. Rool. Don't forget about the Echo Fighters like Ken, Daisy, Chrom, Richter Belmont, and Dark Samus.

For me personally, I'm split on the decision of maining Inkling, Link, Pokémon Trainer, Wii Fit Trainer, Snake, Ryu, Mega Man, Ridley, Palutena, Mr. Game and Watch, and the Piranha Plant.

After the jump, you'll find a poll that lists all 75 known characters. You only have 10 choices though. Which characters are you the most interested in playing?

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Menat's performance has dramatically improved while Ryu retains his most used character title in the month of October for Street Fighter 5

In the month of September, we saw Ryu reclaim his spot as the favorite character from Sagat in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition. Notably, Sagat was the most used fighter for the month of August despite Ryu maintaining the title as far as we can remember.

Ryu is once again in the top spot for the month of October. Following him is fellow shotos, Akuma and Ken. Guile, Cammy, and Sagat come after them.

What's particularly interesting about October's stats is Menat's sudden improvement in performance. Month after month, the match up chart would consistently put her in the bottom five.

This time, Menat's performance against the rest of the cast as placed her closer to the middle. Out of 34 characters, her match ups place her in the 20th spot.

Unsurprisingly, M. Bison maintains the best match ups. Unlike September, Sagat is now the second worst performing character instead of the worst. Poor Sakura is now ranked 34 out of 34.

Feel free to draw comparisons to our Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition tiers section.

Street Fighter 5 October 2018 stats image #1 Street Fighter 5 October 2018 stats image #2
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Source: CFN.

This is one of the best time-out victories ever in fighting games for literally running out the clock

Under Night In-Birth is a series best known for its fast-paced combat, deep fighting mechanics with varied systems, great sprite work and tight controls which has made it one of the go-to favorites for anime fighting game fans in recent years.

What it's typically not known for, however, is literally running out the clock to lock in victories by time-out as your opponent chases you around the screen, but here we are.

Initial J recently shared a clip of one of their matches in Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late[st] where they were able to dash with Seth from one side of the large stage to another as time was winding down twice, and their opponent could not catch up to them at all.

Seth is one of the fastest characters in UNIEL, but it's hard to imagine that many players would think to use that speed to essentially play tag within a 2D fighting game.

This doesn't appear to be a foolproof strategy though since it seems like Initial J's opponent could have stuffed their running attempts with some better placed ground attacks. That wouldn't be very fun or exciting though.

You can check out the hypest eight seconds of running that fighting games has to offer in the full UNIEL clip below.

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SonicFox busts out the rare Joker against Batman and donates $10,000 to his opponent: Injustice 2 Pro Series 2018 Grand Finals highlights

The 2018 competitive season for Injustice 2 came to a close yesterday with the Pro League Grand Finals event, and it was quite the ride to say the least.

A $100,000 prize pool was on the line, and the best NetherRealm fighting game players in the world gathered to compete for their slice of the pie.

FOX|SonicFox, Noble|Rewind, Scar, Noble|Semiij, Simplicity|Tweedy, PG|Hayatei and others came prepared to throw down though a familiar face using an unfamiliar fighter would take home the grand prize in the end.

The Joker was SonicFox's weapon of choice for his final matches, who rarely sees competitive play and is ranked 35th on our tier lists, against Rewind's Batman for the most fitting way to possibly end Injustice's pro circuit on — depending on when the next NRS fighter releases.

On a more human and feel good note, SonicFox announced after winning that he will be donating at least $10,000 of his winnings to Rewind to help pay for his father's ongoing medical treatment.

Enough of the talk though. Let's get to the action with Scar and Tweedy's losers side match which went down to the final game with both players' characters at low health. After a couple of key drops, Scar managed to freeze Tweedy's Starfire in place as he was flying at Supergirl with a great read / reaction to take the set.

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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate creator Masahiro Sakurai shares new details on Ken, Incineroar, online matchmaking, and more

Fans are chomping at the bit for new information about Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. As we sit here a little over 20 days from the game's official launch on December 7th, I think it's safe to say that a lot of people have not taken their eyes off of the calendar in weeks and probably won't until release.

The final Smash Bros. Ultimate Nintendo Direct presentation before launch aired earlier this month, and with it series creator Masahiro Sakurai unveiled a giant wave of new information about the upcoming Nintendo Switch title. From the reveal of characters like Pokemon Sun and Moon's Incineroar, Street Fighter's Ken, and Piranha Plant from the Super Mario Bros. series — Incineroar being a newcomer on the launch roster, Ken an Echo Fighter of Ryu, and Piranha Plant as a bonus DLC character coming later — there was much to learn from the broadcast. Still, the people want more.

In his most recent Famitsu magazine column, Sakurai provided additional details on the contents we were shown during the Nintendo Direct.

The new batch of information comes in the form of a quick line or two about several things from the Nintendo Direct.

"He has a lot of points that differ from Ryu, but a lot of people would probably not like him taking up his own entire spot," Sakurai said about Ken. "Think of him as an Echo Fighter with a lot of extra juice added to him."

According to Sakurai, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has also gone gold. This mean the launch build of the game is complete and it is ready to be shipped to stores.

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Fighting EX Layer launches November 29 on PC; PlayStation 4 version to receive update

Fighting EX Layer's PC version was first announced in September with a vague release window of 2018–2019, but we now know when Arika's latest fighting game will be moving to a brand new platform.

On Arika's Facebook page, the developer announced that the Steam version of Fighting EX Layer will be releasing on November 30th at 10:00 a.m. JST, which is 5:00 p.m. PDT on November 29th.

The original PlayStation 4 version of FEXL will receive an update later that day in Japan around 5:00 p.m. JST to match it to the PC release of version 1.1.1, which will be around midnight PDT on November 30th.

A special discount promotion will be ongoing for the first week after Fighting EX Layer's release on Steam seeing a 25 percent drop for most countries making it $29.99 USD instead of $39.99. Only the standard version will be available on Steam while the light version will remain only on PS4.

Terry Bogard, Area and Sharon had previously been announced as DLC characters for Fighting EX Layer at EVO 2018, but their continued existence and development may be reliant on how well the PC, PS4 and future arcade versions perform according to Arika. The developer does currently have an event listed for December on their page for "Fighting EX Layer's 2019 schedule," however.

You can check out the full Steam details below plus the version 1.1.1 description for Fighting EX Layer along with a new video of Versus Mode running on the PC build after the jump.

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Bandai Namco releases new screenshots for Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan Goku and Vegeta plus Golden Frieza in Jump Force

Bandai Namco had previously teased that Super Saiyan God Super Saiyan Goku would be playable in the upcoming Jump Force arena fighter, and we finally got to see him in action alongside SSGSS Vegeta and Frieza in his golden form at Microsoft's X018 event.

Now, the publisher has released some high resolution screenshots to accompany their previous gameplay trailer showing off their earth-shattering power and visual flare.

These Super Saiyan Blue variants and new-and-improved Frieza will be "Ultimate Transformations" for the characters meaning they will not take up an extra spot on the roster as some of them do in other games like Dragon Ball FighterZ.

The new Jump Force screens give us a more detailed look at the Dragon Ball fighters' powered up Super moves with Goku's signature Kamehameha, Vegeta's Galick Gun and Frieza's planet destroying Death Ball.

While many of the characters in Jump Force begin the fight in their base forms, it appears as though most of them can power up to later transformations and more as was previously shown with fighters like Gon from Hunter x Hunter.

Jump Force is a 3D arena fighter featuring some of Shonen Jump's most iconic franchises from the past and present including Naruto, Yu-Gi-Oh, One Piece, Bleach, Fist of the North Star, Yu Yu Hakusho and more. It is currently set to launch for the PlayStation 4, Xbox One and PC on February 15th, 2019.

New Jump Force Dragon Ball screen shots image #1 New Jump Force Dragon Ball screen shots image #2 New Jump Force Dragon Ball screen shots image #3 New Jump Force Dragon Ball screen shots image #4
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Injustice 2 Pro Series 2018 Grand Finals results

Update: This story has been updated with final results.

The Injustice 2 Pro Series had its run this year as well, and now we're finally at the Grand Finals.

With $40,000 on the line for the grand prize, and a total prize pool of $100,000, this is definitely not one to miss since the competitors will be playing for keeps.

It will be played out in a 16-man double elimination bracket, so there are a lot of matches for your viewing pleasure today.

The players qualified for this prestigious event are Tweedy, FOX|SonicFox, BC|Biohazard, Noble|Rewind, Noble|Semiij, PG|Hayatei, DR Gross, BC|HoneyBee, DF|Grr, IrishMantis, Method|SylverRye, Scar, HappyPow, NASR|TekkenMaster, CLN|BasicS and HeeyGe0rge.

It's a one-day event, so you can expect all the action to be done today, and while a Tuesday tournament is a bit unorthodox, just keep the stream open the whole day and enjoy the show.

Streaming is being done at NetherRealm.

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Playing fighting games without learning footsies is like jumping in the ocean with just floaties on, and it's a partly why players don't stick around

Not only is it possible to skip over the fundamental first steps of learning a fighting game, it's often exactly what winds up happening as newcomers try their hands at this classic gaming genre.

Tutorials and training modes for fighting games have been leveling up over the years, no doubt, but they often still fail to teach greener players the foundational basics that most everything else will be built upon.

Most of the time tutorials will teach you about a game's signature comeback mechanic and have you go through a handful of special moves and combos with each roster member. That's all necessary and good, but it doesn't equip the trainee with cornerstones they'll need to form a sturdy approach.

You use your special moves and your knowledge of combos to build upon the foundation that is made up of an intimate knowledge of your (and all other characters') basic attacks. It's normals, it's spacing, it's footsies, and it's something too many people run right past en route to learning how to throw fireballs and wake up with Dragon Punches.

Rushing out into competition like this is similar to running out into the ocean with floaties on, leaving your solid and sturdy ship behind. You'll be fine for a little bit, but soon the waves swell too large and you won't survive for very long.

It's not hard to see why such a situation would lead to players burning out and deeming fighting games "just too hard to get into." Perhaps if there were more of a focus by both developers and community members to better communicate the groundwork that will lead potential community members to more success as well as their sticking around for more.

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'Autopilot' is one of the dirtiest words in the FGC... here are five quick tips to help you level up your awareness while playing Street Fighter 5

Tyrant and Packz are back for another one of Frame Advantage's incredibly helpful "Speedrun Specials" that can help you level up your game no matter what your level of skill.

Today the UK competitors are looking at five quick tips to sharpen your awareness in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition. Let's be honest, even the slightest misstep in this game can lead to a quick round loss if you're not careful.

A big part of capturing and maintaining a lead simply falls on making sure to dot your 'i's and cross your 't's. Some of these are quite obvious once articulated, but how many times have you failed to take specific notice of your opponent's recovery habits and wound up choosing the wrong offensive option as a result?

Have you ever accidentally ripped a Critical Art just after stunning your foe because you weren't paying attention to the stun meter? This video is for everyone, believe me.

Fighting games call for constant refreshers and awareness of even the most simple concepts, and Tyrant and Packz do a particularly good job of sharing not only what we should be continuously mindful of, but also why it's so important.

Continue on to see their quick video with all five tips and let us know in the comments if this was helpful to you in any way.

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G is the third strongest Season 3 character according to Javits, how would you rank Street Fighter 5's six latest DLC newcomers?

We've had the entire Season 3 DLC roster for Street Fighter 5 for a good three months now as both G and Sagat dropped back in early August, and community members are beginning to rank the strength of the six newcomers now that we're decently familiarized.

Javits Arias, known as something of a Street Fighter scientist because of how much time he spends researching Training Mode tech and sharing it online, has come forward with his own tier list as he orders Sakura, Blanka, Falke, Cody, G and Sagat.

It's no secret that the earlier characters have widely been viewed as somewhat lackluster, and Sagat and Cody have been deemed mid tier by the general masses. G, on the other hand, is often regarded as having incredibly high potential because of his offensive tools and high octane V-Trigger 1.

Javits, however, is not quite convinced that the President of the World is as strong as the community has made him out to be, claiming his lack of an invincible reversal hurts him significantly.

The New York player also notes that, "Season 3’s DLC is definitely the weakest compared to S1 and S2," the latter of which both produced top 5-ranked characters at various points in the game's life.

Check out Javits list by clicking the thumbnail here and then let us know if you agree in the comments. Be sure to share your own ordering of the S3 characters in terms of tier strength as well.

Javits' S3 tier list image #1
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The master of breasts and thighs is right at home: KFC created The Colonel in Soul Calibur 6

Remember when I mentioned that the Soul Calibur 6 created characters are really taking it up a notch — putting Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's Isabelle into the battle — and that I'm not sure how I feel about that? Well, KFC just said "hold my beer."

The fried chicken restaurant chain recently made their own Create-A-Soul character in Soul Calibur 6, and it is the man, the myth, the legend himself — The Colonel.

The Twitter account of Kentucky Fried Chicken's Canada branch recently shared a screenshot showing their own created Colonel in Soul Calibur 6, featuring his trademark facial hair, glasses, and white suit (albeit with no shirt underneath). "Enter Colonel Sanders. Are you game?" KFC Canada's tweet reads with Bandai Namco and the Soul Calibur Twitter accounts tagged.

Bandai Namco responded to the call out, letting KFC know that they're ready for a fight. "Bring it! You’re not the only ones who serve a combo!" Bandai Namco tweeted.

All I can say here is that The Colonel looks pretty rad in Soul Calibur 6, and we are clearly living in the darkest timeline with these character creations... The master of breasts, thighs, and legs shouldn't find the transition into Soul Calibur 6 too difficult. (I'm talking about you, Ivy!)

KFC created The Colonel in Soul Calibur 6 image #1 KFC created The Colonel in Soul Calibur 6 image #2
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Peer inside the mind of The Beast if you dare... HiFight breaks down Daigo's hair raising comeback at Red Bull Kumite

The anxiety that comes with playing in a high stakes tournament like Red Bull Kumite never really goes away, but players BST|Daigo have experience to the point that they are able to still execute their high level game plans despite the constant pins and needles.

Said anxiety has multiple points of entry during a match wherein it can creep up and start distracting. Just sitting down against a reigning EVO champion like Mous|ProblemX is the first of these entry points, but finding yourself at a major life deficit is another, and getting started on a comeback can often lead to a player thinking more about said comeback than the fact that they're -2 after certain blocked moves.

There was one round in particular at Red Bull Kumite 2018 that saw Daigo showcasing his mastery of fighting game play even when things were at their most intense.

We actually featured this moment in our highlights recap, but now we'll do you one better. Fighting game enthusiast HiFight has singled out Daigo's RBK for his latest "Just Frame Analysis" video, giving us both a more nuanced look at the series of decisions The Beast made and a new appreciation for why this was all so impressive.

Prepare to have your hair raised yet again by this awesome display, unless you haven't seen it before, in which case you're in for a real treat.

You can view the clip by itself by clicking the thumbnail right here, then jump to HiFight's Just Frame Analysis video below to see the subtle nuances and decisions that made this astounding sequence possible:

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