What did Capcom and SNK bring to the fighting game genre?

We all know that Capcom and SNK have always been a major part of the progression and evolution of 2d fighting games. Inevitably, mechanics and various game attributes will be used in each other’s fighting games, but what did Capcom and SNK specifically bring to the fighting genre?

This is the current list of innovations brought out by the company. Note: It is still a WIP and not all things are accurate, post to voice your opinion.

Street Fighter (1987):
-Special Moves
-Invincible Frames
-Negative Edging

Street Fighter 2 (1991):
-Multiple Character Choices
-Grabs\Grappling Moves

Street Fighter 2 - Champion Edition (1992):

Super Street Fighter 2 (1993):
-Multi-part Special Attacks

Street Fighter 2 - Turbo (1994):
-Alternate Version of Characters

Street Figher Alpha (1995):
-Multi-leveled Super Bars

Street Fighter Alpha 2 (1996):
-Custom Combos

Street Fighter Alpha 3 (1998):
-Guard Meter

Street Fighter Ex (1996):
-Guard Break Attack

The Night Warriors\Darkstalkers (1994):
-Air Blocking
-Chain Combos

Vampire Hunter - Darkstalkers’ Revenge\Darkstalkers 2 (1995):
-“ES” Moves (Energy Special Moves)

Art of Fighting (1992):
-Spirit Gauge
-Gauge Selection
-Dynamic Camera

Fatal Fury - King of Fighters (1991):
-Variable Plane Fighting
-Counter Move (Non Playable Character)
-Dramatic Battles

Fatal Fury 2 (1992):
-Knockdown Attack

Fatal Fury Special (1993):
-Secret Boss

Fatal Fury 3 (1995):
-“Exceed” Super Bars
-Fighting Grade
-Feint Moves

Real Bout Fatal Fury (1995):
-Out of Bounds
-Guard Cancelling

The King of Fighters '94 (1994):
-Throws in Combos
-Team Battles

The King of Fighters '96 (1996):
-Guard Break

The King of Fighters '97 (1997):
-Gauge Selection

Samurai Showdown (1993):
-Rage System (Rage Burst, Rage Custom Combos, Rage-Enhanced Moves)
-Fighting with Weapons
-Disarming Weapong\Weapon Break
-Companions Used in Battle

Samurai Showdown 2 (1994):
-Short Hops

World Heroes 2 (1993):
-Grab Counter

Data East
Fighter’s History: Mizoguchi Kiki Ippatsu!! (1995)
-Tag System

Karate Champ (1984)
-1st 2D Fighting Game

Yie Ar Kung-Fu (1985)

Heavyweight Champ (1976)
-1st Hand to Hand Fighting Game

Virtua Fighter (1993)
-1st 3D (Polygonal) Fighting Game

Capcom invented the Shoryuken (which can be simply abbreviated as DP) and SNK brought tag team play.

I don’t know, I’m just guessin’. Good question though.

What do you mean by mechanics? Both companies brought a lot of ideas to the genre and there’s way too many things to list. If you took a lot at CvS2, there’s a lot of systems and subsystems in the grooves that highlight both Capcom styles and SNK styles such as dashing, running, rolling, running, short jumping, air blocking, alpha countering, and safe falls so that might be a good way to see what sort of basic things each company might use for the genre.

I wouldn’t necessarily call srk a mechanic, more a move which has been fairly used. Also didn’t the vs series bring tag 1st? I’m not entirely sure myself.

What you listed is perfect but who introduced it in their fighting games first? I would assume that dashing, running, rolling, short jumping was all brought out by SNK and air blocking, alpha countering, and safe falls were from Capcom?

Sure the list may be long, but I’m interested in hearing what people think, if only a few mechanics at a time.

As far as in Samurai Shodown (which I know), SNK introduced

SS1 - 1993
-rage system with rage meter thats filled by taking damage (and subsystems, such as rage explosion, issen, rage-enhanced special moves, rage custom combos, etc)
-fighting with weapons (Samurai Shodown 1 was the first weapon-based fighting from what I heard. Well, at least first successful one)
-armed/unarmed fighting possibility in same game as well as weapon break and weapon disarm features.
-treating of weapons as separate from character objects (they have different hit properties and sounds, there are reversals which will trigger against weapon hit but not against punch or kick, etc). Largely, other weapon fightings today dont differentiate.
-animal companions to playable characteres

Not sure if it wasnt done before, but button-mashing competition between players during the fight (used when swords are clashed to overpower the opponent. The other instance where button mashing was used in similar fashion is MKvsDC Test Your Might mechanic used during wall-breaking dash bout.

SS2 - 1994
-parry (was named Weapon Deflect in SS games, Capcom later popularized the mechanic in SFIII games under name parry)

SS64 - 1997
-multi-tiered 3D stages

Dunno about tag, as far as I know first game for either company was xvsf for capcom and kizuna tag battle for snk, both came out september 96.

Samsho series had a ton of mechanics that were copied, and a lot that never were used again. Only one was the rage gauge, which filled only if you got hit (lol). There was the hole weapons disarm thing, a parry mechanic that would also disarm if they had a weapon and you didn’t. A burst mechanic, that gave you access to certain things depending on the game, but completely got rid of your meter for the rest of the match. It would also stop the timer for that round, which was cool as hell and never used for anything else. In 5 they made the slo-mo mechanic where your opponent was stuck in the matrix and you could fuck em up.

Lots of individual moves from samsho were copied too, like bust genjuros projectile in ss3 is the original version of anji’s butterfly in gg. I also think that was the first high/low simultaneous ‘unblockable’ in a 2d game.

Real bout 1 had ring outs, though those were already on vf, but they did have walls that were breakable which weren’t around yet at the time I think. They also had the booby trapped walls in world heroes lol.

Vampire had the first get up system I think, where you could roll left or right, and also the first down attacks in a 2d game, both copied by later samshos, though I might be wrong on that. Capcom also was the first to do chain combos in vampire.

I know SNK introduced the whole camera zoom in and out feature, which I believe Art of Fighting 1 was the first game to use it. SNK also introduced team battles in KoF94. Supers first introduced in AoF1. Characters outfits getting torn during matches AoF1. I also believe SNK introduced taunts (AoF1?) but I could be wrong on that. There are too many things that can be listed if you break down each fighter both companies have done till now. Though a lot of things might be similar like parrys in 3S and just defend in MOTW.

Capcom brought us SFIV which had plenty of new and novel ideas that revolutionized the genre. Before SFIV, the fighting game genre was but an arid wasteland devoid of imagination, fun or strategy.

With the release of SFIV and its bringing of a new era I can now have a complete and enthralling gamplay experience in my everyday life.

Its character designs clearly put other games to shame as well. One look at this and I was sold.

Didn’t Capcom bring us combos with SFII? (Accidently but that doesn’t matter)

Power gauges can be said to have originated in AoF1.
I think Capcom introduced chain combos and juggles?

and then the fan boy was me,right?

yes SNK invented super moves with Art of Fighting built into its spirit gauge systems.

Fatal Fury 2 was released in Japan the same year (1992) and invented desperation moves (based on health, no power/energy/spirit bar required.)



If you mean Darkstalkers yeah, but if you mean Vampire Savior then Cyberbots might take that innovation, since it seems to have been released after DS but before VS, and it also has the mechanic to do a passtrough dash in either direction as you wake up.

Come on now be fair…

…The average sarcasm detector can only take so much punishmment at one time before it is overloaded and rendered useless and the “Literal post interpreter” has to be subbed in.

Did capcom come out with empty air chaining with DS or is there another less well known fighter that did it first out there?

In fact, can Cyberbots have been the first instance of flying (holding boost button in air to hover with full 8-direction control)? Anything before '95 with 8-way flight?

I mean vampire/darkstalkers, the first one, I think 94. That had the get up rolls and pounce attacks right?

That also reminds me, TMNT tournament fighters in 93 had the first air dash, wingnut had one and it was good as hell too.

it should be noted a lot of snk shit was directly copied into GG because samsho/lb people moved on to work at arc systems, i believe!! the grappler character from LB2 had so many similarities to potemkin…

This is a great topic/question… with a lot of incorrect responses. Would be nice if the first post indexed all the features that everyone agrees are true.

Maybe the topic should be re-worded? Obviously fighting games as we know them were either invented, or completely revolutionized, by Capcom/SNK, but what did those games introduce to video games in general?

I’m not qualified to answer everything, but World Heroes 2 featured the earliest example of parry/repel/reverse that can think of.

I’m pretty sure that wrestling/boxing games had energy (non-health) meters before Art of Fighting. AoF had the first Desperation Move (full meter/low health= secret devastating attack) though.

Is there an example of joystick motions and combos in earlier games (two things everyone thinks SFII invented)? What about Juggling (which I first noticed in either Mortal Kombat or SFII CE)?