Tag Archives: game

A nerd talks about her favourite characters #2 – Akuma

Hey, we’re back again. This time with a very mysterious, and pretty bad dude, Akuma.

When he first showed his face, or maybe didn’t show his face at all since his portrait was blacked out, Akuma could only be accessed in an iteration of the original Street Fighter II with some dank codes in the character select menu.

Personally I was a little too young for these games so I don’t really know all the details, but I think it’s very specific on what you have to do and when you have to do it to play as him.

Just as well too, the dude is broken as heck! In the early games especially.

Since then, I know Akuma has been a little less devious when it comes to hiding offscreen on character select menus. Take his not-so-hard-to-find appearances in Pocket Fighter and Street Fighter vs X-Men. Just move one along where the rest of the characters stop and oops! There he is.

And eventually he just stopped hiding off the roster and finally managed to just stay with the others. Come on Akuma, I know you’re not exactly the friendliest guy… But it wasn’t that hard, was it?

So, Akuma is a shoto. Basically he fights a lot like Ryu and Ken, right?

So what’s the big deal about this guy?

He always comes packed with air fireballs, which I tend to abuse a bit when I can. Other shotos have used them before, but he always has them. Always.

There’s always subtle differences, but Akuma has always done a lot of damage, and in return doesn’t have much health. There’s a joke I’ve hung onto that he’s so good at fighting that he’s never actually been hurt before, so that’s why he never has much health.

And of course probably the most iconic thing about him; The Raging Demon. Akuma’s very memorable super move has him dash across the screen on one leg to grab his opponent, the screen goes black and flashes a lot with some hit sound effects. Then when everything comes back, Akuma is stood with his arms broadly out at his sides and with his back to the camera. The symbol on his back also flashes a bit.

When we first started playing Street Fighter, I was so sad when my friend figured out he could jump over my Raging Demon. But I guess it wouldn’t be fair if there weren’t little ways around it…

(But it would be fair if I could get it off after two hits, sure on block, without Zangief grabbing me as I was starting it up! What the heck!!)

So yeah, I play Akuma. A lot. He appears in pretty much every game I play.

Street Fighter games… Marvel vs Capcom games… Oh, and Tekken.

That one time Akuma just sort of barged into Tekken and even into their actual, real, canon story mode? Trust him to waltz into another franchise, including its story mode.

Stuff like that is only part of the reason I love Akuma so much.

It’s not very hard to state that he’s extremely cool. One of the coolest in Street Fighter honestly, and that’s saying a lot! He’s got the gi going on as well as those big beads around his neck, but the things that stick him out to me are his iconic red, tied up hair and his dark, red eyes.

Akuma’s not such a good dude, trying to force an evil energy out of someone that seems as good and pure as Ryu. On top of that, he’s just not so nice anyway, you know? He doesn’t seem to get involved with Bison and all the other problems characters have in these games, but he causes enough trouble on his own.

Other than trying to make Ryu possibly even worse than him, Akuma craves to fight only the strongest of warriors. He’ll turn away a fight if he feels his opponent is too weak for him, and even leave in the middle of one if he figures that out during.

The example of that is in the story of one of the Street Fighter III games I think. Basically this old dude, Gen, is having a full on fight to the death with Akuma. But somewhere down the line, Akuma discovers that Gen has a terrible, fatal illness…

What does Akuma do?

He sort of just gets really salty and leaves without another word. That’s my Akuma alright, too salty to stick around even after fighting the guy for a bit.

I find his attitude and general terrible nature absolutely flawlessly linking in with his design, and his badass fighting abilities.

Akuma is just an extremely iconic kind of character that can’t really be done the justice he deserves by someone just trying to explain how great he is.

Plus, I have too many inside jokes with a great friend of mine that just make me love him even more. Of course that’s all stuff that makes the two of us laugh, and it’s rather out of character, but that’s the fun in making those jokes in the first place.

So yeah, in summary…

Akuma is very badass, edgy and the saltiest winner in the world. What a guy.

Next on the list is a much nicer character, Ken Masters! There’s going to be lots of Street Fighter up in here!


A Nerd Rambles about her favourite characters #1: Strider Hiryu

First off, wow, I really left this place for dead. I thought I could try be cool and unique by just finding writing prompts and only doing those but it ended up being very draining and well, I could really do myself some favours to blog properly.

So with that briefly out of the way, I want to start talking on here about stuff I’m pretty passionate about.

So I thought of this little ‘series’, if you will.

Me and one of my best friends put together a list of our top 50 fighting game characters of all time! I want to go down the list as far as my willpower takes me to. Hopefully from 1 to 50, like I said, I gotta do more stuff here.

Well with all that fluff out of the way, his name is up there. Strider Hiryu, my favourite character of all time. He took that spot fairly recently I would say, but I guess I never really had a super duper favourite before him. Just a lot of favourites that I really liked.

Let’s start with what drew me to him to begin with; His design. Strider is just about everything I could love about a character design. A badass ninja (I am pretty into ninjas!) with really funky ‘anime’ hair with a really cool long as heck red scarf, very nicely matching blue gi, and well, another element of a character I can enjoy is a young ‘expert’ at something, and that Strider certainly is.

pocket_fighter__strider_sprite_by_sephysnu-dbwmjs0Look at this lil guy! I tried to recreate the art style of a very charming Capcom game Pocket Fighters, because I would do ten backflips if I could ever officially see him in that absolutely precious art style.

So yeah. I kind of love everything about his design. Even his weapon! I haven’t seen much like it, so it’s a thrill to watch him in action swinging that thing around.

I was just too young, and brought up in the wrong place, to grow up with the arcades. So my actual first exposure to Strider was in a game I love very much; Marvel vs Capcom 3. I got myself back into it recently, and fighting games in general, with a lot of motivation from that great friend of mine I mentioned earlier.

And speaking of that game, I guess at this point, it’s no secret that Strider is probably my favourite in that game! I just love how he plays. I figured out some funky combos (or at least funky for me… I’m not the best, I just like the genre) and can clean up a team of three with this kid by himself, when I play my cards right.

He’s quick, he’s got great range in terms of both projectiles and wall-bounce based attacks, and I just find him very rewarding to get things right with. He’s one of those characters where most of the things you can do end up looking quite flashy, I suppose.

I played the reboot of his franchise too, and I really enjoyed it. There was probably a lot I missed as someone who never got to play the original, I kind of didn’t really like the way the story was told, but the gameplay was solid!

Strider felt like… Well, Strider.

I understood what I was doing thanks to playing him too much on MVC3, and he was just super satisfying to control. Again, he was super fast. His jumps were fun, there wasn’t much better than climbing all over the walls with him.

But perhaps the thing I can take from his rebooted game to describe the icing on the cake for why I love this character so much is in the very ending segment of the game…

Spoilers ahead, if you’re bothered!

Strider takes the fight to Grand Master Meio, an evil overlord-type that has overthrown the city he was sent to, to destroy the Grand Master. After beating him the first time, he throws himself into a portal, and the next time you see him, he’s some sort of round abomination of an alien thing… In space!

So take that into mind. Strider doesn’t even think twice about getting in that portal to finish this off.

When it’s all done, Strider hitches a ride on Grand Master Meio’s squirming, huge body that falling back to earth. He’s pretty calm about it, just stood over the squirming form of a human beneath him with his arms folded while the credits roll.

And then, after all that.

After seeing this dude turn into a huge, round, weird alien thing…

After riding said weird alien thing back to planet earth…

The only thing Strider does is land in front of the temple again and calmly state “Mission Accomplished.”

I actually giggled to myself when I first saw it, because I was still recovering from how weird everything got and here Strider just shrugs it off like he does this every day. That’s my final reason for my love of this character; Nothing phases him!

He’s very calm, like… VERY calm. His quiet and serious personality is portrayed so wonderfully, it just sort of adds to how badass he is on top of his already badass design.

I’m not even sure if this all makes sense to anybody but myself, but even if not, I have something I can actually come on here and ramble about in a blog format.

So look forward to sometime soon issue 2 of this ‘series’, featuring Street Fighter’s mysterious and menacing baddie, Akuma!

The power of Nostalgia

I’ve been having a very nostalgic day.

A nostalgic day that saw me sitting and watching through all 300 of the tower challenges in Mortal Kombat 9. Yeah…

Pretty lame in some people’s eyes, but it brings me a lot of great memories.

You see, one of my best friends has gotten back into fighting games, particularly Marvel Vs Capcom 3, we played it so much together a few years ago. He’s gotten back into it and brought me a lot of great memories.

But it also got me thinking about the other games we were playing around the same time. One of those was indeed Mortal Kombat 9. We beat the story mode together (much frustration with the final boss. He took about half an hour for us to beat.), we beat a bunch of arcade modes together to see the cheesy endings.

And what most people spend a lot of their time on that game on… We beat the 300 challenge tower together.

The missions all vary on the character and objective. We’d pass the controller to whoever liked the character better, and on the missions where you got to choose, it was just sort of a back and forwards until someone finally did it.

It’s pretty weird to be so nostalgic for a game that isn’t even that old. It isn’t even that old and it barely holds up to the same graphical quality as Mortal Kombat X… But it still holds a special place in my heart.

All those great memories and so many more.

I just got very invested in that nostalgia today and well… That led me to a five hour video (that I’m still watching as I write this) of the challenge tower! I could have forgotten how frustrating the very last challenge was if I didn’t watch it take some pretty skilled players about 8 hours to beat it.

Damn Shao Kahn, man. He’s never easy but he’s a bit ridiculous in that game, haha.

Essentially the point is, nostalgia can make you do some pretty wacky things! It’s great to remember such good times when so many darker ones are going on right now. Remembering jokes, the game itself, just a lot of little things that completed the experience for us both.

I wonder if I’ll get so into this nostalgia that I’ll watch the story mode again, too…

But I digress.

As long as ‘nostalgia glasses’ don’t prevent you seeing any flaws in anything, I honestly feel like having such an old fondness of something can be the best thing to happen to you. So maybe a few years in the future you’ll stop and remember it, and maybe even go on a happy trip down memory lane as I have today.

A bit of a mellow entry today, but I just wanted to talk about how… Peaceful this nice little nostalgia trip has made me.

Are you very nostalgic for something that’s not really so ‘old’?