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GDC + VRDC 2019 Session Scheduler

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'09 to '19: A Decade of Approachability in Fighting Games

Noah Sasso  (Technical Designer, Iron Galaxy Studios)

Location: Room 2010, West Hall

Date: Friday, March 22

Time: 3:00pm - 4:00pm

Pass Type: All Access, GDC Conference + Summits, GDC Conference - Get your pass now!

Topic: Design

Format: Session

Vault Recording: Video

Audience Level: All

In 2009, 'Street Fighter IV' revitalized the traditional fighting game genre, kicking off a decade of renewed interest from developers, players and viewers. Nonetheless, even in an era where competitive games like 'Fortnite' and 'Overwatch' are more dominant than ever, mainstream appeal seems to remain slightly out of reach.

This talk surveys the ways developers have attempted to broaden the audience for one of the oldest and most exciting genres in the industry. Noah analyzes a wide variety of games released between '09 and '19, revealing how specific design and aesthetic decisions can shape player experiences in unexpected ways.


Attendees learn about how the genre's design traditions have shifted over time, as well as the most (and least!) effective ways to make fighting games more broadly appealing while retaining their competitive core.

Intended Audience

No prior knowledge about fighting games or design terminology is necessary.