Wednesday, July 9

FaceBreaker, or, How to Insult Your Opponent

Update: Controls Informational Video

Original Post
FaceBreaker was announced a while back. In development by EA's Canada studio, FaceBreaker is a humorous, comedic take on recent string of more serious boxing games. Unlike Fight Night, FaceBreaker attempts a more arcadey take on boxing, targeting a more casual, "fight for fun," audience. Most disparately, FaceBreaker eschews Fight Night's highly successful analog swing control system. Instead, FaceBreaker takes it old-school functioning with a more traditional button and trigger control system. As GameSpot explains (for PS3), R1 button blocks, X punches the torso, and square punches the head. Also, as GameSpot and IGN further explain, players can parry attacks by simultaneously holding block and whichever face button you predict the receiving punch will be. If you chose incorrectly and, say, try to parry a head punch that turned out to be a punch to the gut, you'll be hit hard, rather than parrying or blocking at all. Therefore, you can block guaranteed, or you can risk the parry and turn the tables on your opponent.

The game also features a bone breaker system, but what I would like to focus on for this article is the cool "completely insult the opponent sitting next to you on the couch" . . . feature. Fighting games have for long time featured stance-switching. A few examples my friend and I could think of off the top of our heads include the fighting system of the last-gen Mortal Kombat games, Christie in Tekken, Voldo in Soul Calibur, and Ryu and Lei Wulong in Dead or Alive.
FaceBreaker takes inspiration from these games in the most-awesome way possible. Holding L1 will cause your character to fight one-handed, literally, by putting one arm behind his or her back. Insulting? Most definitely. But this feature just highlights FaceBreaker's focus on fun, comically offensive brawling. And its more than just aesthetic, too. Fighting one-handed also switches fighting styles, if it can be called that. Characters will fight more insultingly; instead of punching, attacks can push opponents to the ground or (don't try this at home) deliver a solid crotch-kick.

I'm just a really big fan of this system. It sounds fun. Imagine the come-backs: one-hit 'till death,
opponent at full-health, and you bring the fight back for the win, all with one-hand tied behind your back.

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