Have you ever punched someone in the face? Don’t, as you’ll probably just wind up breaking your knuckles and feeling bad about it later. Real life ramifications aside though, few elements in a game are as satisfying as good hand to hand combat mechanics, but it’s something that a lot of games don’t quite get right. In order to praise the developers who have the knack for it, here’s a list of ten games with really satisfying fist fighting mechanics.
Wii Sports Boxing
As far as gaming goes, the Boxing element of Wii Sports often descended into little more than two people flailing their arms around like a marionette. As our first taste of motion controlled fighting games went though, it was a revelation. The Wii Sports package bundled with each Wii was the first time most people got to try motion controlled gaming, and it made the fist fighting action of Wii Sports Boxing feel intense and satisfying.
There’s only one thing better than kicking a guy’s ass, and that’s doing it in slow motion. Or you could do it at lightning fast speed, depending on your preference. The time controls and lush combos in Viewtiful Joe made it a 2D brawler that had a style only matched by its impressive difficulty. Extra points go to the cool slow motion dodge animations when you evaded an enemy’s attack. It may be a cliché now, but it was damn cool at the time.
I lump the whole series together for this one, as the combat mechanics haven’t really evolved that much as the series has developed. That said, it is Yakuza’s simplicity that makes it feel so rewarding. The combat mechanics are easy to pick up, but the special moves (or Heat actions as they are referred to in game) had some vicious animations. Combine that with the game’s impressively booming sound effects, and you really felt like you’d broken every bone in your opponent’s body.