Over the past week, Shoryuken readers have been stuffing the ballot boxes of a few polls we ran regarding the best fighting games of 2013. While we provided an overall category for many of the titles released over the past year, we also asked the community to vote for their favorite new property, the best update, the leading port or re-release, and the one game they were most looking forward to in 2014.
Having just closed those polls, we now have a clear look at the final results. While these are obviously not indicative of the fighting game community as a whole, they do provide an interesting take on what our readers thought of the past year. So, without further ado, the results!
Fighting Game of the Year
To say Skullgirls and the folks behind it at Lab Zero Games had a tumultuous 2013 would be a gross understatement. But, despite the numerous curve balls thrown their way, they persevered with continuous updates to the PC version of their popular indie fighter and the release of their very first downloadable character, Squigly. The openness of the developers has certainly endeared them to their zealous community and the game has only gotten better because of it.
Much like they did for the highly-successful Indiegogo campaign, the fans of the little fighting game that could came out in droves to help push Skullgirls Encore to the top of the poll, barely edging out Arc System Works’ BlazBlue: Chronophantasma.[hr]
Best New Game of 2013
While it’s yet to reach home consoles, Persona 4 The Ultimax Ultra Suplex Hold was voted the best new game of the year. The sequel to Arc System Works and Atlus’ Persona 4 Arena, this ridiculously titled game added four completely new characters, Shadow versions for many previous combatants, new gameplay mechanics, and more to provide a fresh take on the collaborative title.
Even though it’s only appeared in arcades thus far, Persona was able to edge out other tough competition like Killer Instinct and Injustice: Gods Among Us, leaving us to wonder how much it will take off when it appears on further platforms this year.[hr]
Best Update of 2013
Dead or Alive 5 saw a significant upgrade with the release of Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate last September. The update fixed a variety of bugs from the previous incarnation while also improving its training mode and expanding the available cast with veterans and guest characters alike. In addition, Ultimate was recently included in the official Northeast Championships XIV lineup and will also see inclusion at SoCal Regionals 2014 next month.
Thanks to a push by Team Ninja themselves, Dead or Alive 5 Ultimate was able to steal the Best Update crown from Skullgirls Encore, Guilty Gear XX Accent Core Plus R, and Street Fighter x Tekken ver. 2013 (each of which have very dedicated fanbases of their own) and walk away with over half of the votes.[hr]
Best Port/Re-Release of 2013
After its initial arcade release, BlazBlue: Chronophantasma found its way to PlayStation 3 in 2013, bringing more new characters as well as additions to its extensive story and universe along with it. While it’s yet to be officially released in regions outside of Japan, eager fans snatched up import copies as fast as they could, providing the greater fighting game community with a look at competition in the title with showings at tournaments like Super Rebel Up!, Team St1ckbug’s monthlies, Frosty Faustings VI, The Runback, Northeast Championships XIV, and more.
Chronophantasma took the lead in this category early and never looked back. Our very own Joey “Mr. Wizard” Cuellar recently asked the airdasher community about the possibility of this title appearing at Evo 2014, so we may very well see the Arc System Works fighter on the main stage come July.[hr]
Most Anticipated Game of 2014
What would a retrospective be without a look to the future? In addition to the “Best of” categories, we asked our readers which title they were most looking forward to in 2014. This year is already shaping up to be incredibly varied, with releases from Capcom, Arc System Works, Sega, Nintendo, and more on the horizon.
This poll remained close all the way to the end, with Ultra Street Fighter IV and Guilty Gear Xrd -SIGN- battling it out for the top spot. Ultimately, it was the former who would secure the honor. Capcom has set out to create the ultimate version of Street Fighter IV, with further adjustments and balance updates for the competitive scene. Along with fan favorites Elena, Hugo, Poison, and Rolento joining the mix (plus a mysterious fifth character that has yet to be revealed) Ultra could very well achieve that goal.[hr]
But, what’s more important than these results is what you think. Be sure to visit the comments below and provide some constructive feedback on the outcome of these polls as well as the idea as a whole. The sheer variety of games our community was graced with over the course of 2013 is crazy to look back on. Here’s to a fantastic new year!