While a lot of parents might not approve of the violence that comes with fighting games, this genre remains to be one of the most popular in the gaming world. There is now a proliferation of a list of fighting games that have become more sophisticated and challenging for each edition. But which are the best?
With so many options available, how do you know which ones to choose for yourself or your gamer buddies? Lucky for you, we’re here to help out. We have searched far and wide and found for you the 23 best fighting games out there:
1. Injustice 2
Injustice 2 is one of the best fighting games for PS4 developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. It was released in May 2017 for Android, iOS, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Microsoft Windows.
This is a super-powered follow-up to the popular game “Injustice: Gods Among Us.” This time, you can power up and build the best version of your favorite characters. Appearing here is a huge selection of heroes and villains from the DC Universe. As an extra bonus, you can control how your characters look, develop, and fight across different game modes.
2. Mortal Kombat 11
Mortal Kombat 11 is a fighting video game that was developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. It was released in North America in April 2019 and in Europe in April 2019 and May 2019 (for Nintendo Switch). It’s available for Microsoft Windows, Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and Google Stadia.
The epic saga still continues with a fresh cinematic narrative. Here, you can assume the role of different characters from both present and past in a story of time-bending. Mortal Kombat 11 offers infinite options for customization, giving you more control over your characters, hence providing a more personalized and deeper experience. You can choose from a selection of characteristics that you can earn through gameplay.
3. Tekken 7
Tekken 7 is a cool fighting game developed by Bandai Namco Studios and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. It was released worldwide in March 2015, in July 2016 (FR), and in Japan in February 2019 (FR: Round 2). It’s available for Arcade, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
Time to raise those fists again and prepare for the ultimate conflict on the most recent generation of Tekken. The fighting franchise makes a comeback in Tekken 7. The faithful gameplay and 3D battle system still remain in Tekken 7.
But the franchise goes to the next level with its more sophisticated photo-realistic graphics, fighting mechanics, and other innovative features. Tekken 7 also offers the ultimate fighting experience for you.
4. Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition
Street Fighter V: Arcade Edition is one of the fighting games anime. It was developed by Capcom and Dimps and published by Capcom too. The Arcade Edition was released worldwide in January 2018 and in Japan on March 2019 (Type Arcade). It’s also available for Microsoft Windows and PlayStation 4.
This game includes all the base contents from the original release, all gameplay-related modes, and a number of added features. It even includes a code for Character Pass 1 & 2 content. Aside from this, the developers have added twelve more characters and twelve premium costumes. You can download the new features and redeem the Character Pass content with an internet connection.
5. MARVEL VS. CAPCOM 2: NEW AGE OF HEROES
Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes is another one of the 23 best fighting games developed by Capcom, Backbone Entertainment and published by Capcom too. It was released in 2000 for Arcade, Dreamcast, iOS, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Xbox, and Xbox 360.
This is one of the best games that guarantee an incredible experience for gamers. You can start with three characters but in this edition, you can tag all the three in or out in mid-battle making them fully playable. There are no more medium kick and punch functions here. Instead, there are ASSIST 1 and 2 used to call-in your buddies to help ranging from brutal mid-combo blows to health recovery.
6. Skullgirls 2nd Encore
Skullgirls 2nd Encore is a fighting game developed by Lab Zero Games and published by Autumn Games. It was released in July 2015 for PlayStation 4, PS Vita, and PC. An Xbox One edition of the game will soon be released too.
Although the design of this game makes it suitable for tournament-grade fighters, it remains engaging and approachable for casual gamers too. The Variable Tag Battle system allows you to set mismatched teams against each other. By design, Skullgirls is truly unique. It has the most animation frames per character than any other fighting game. It has a classic 6-button play giving characters a wide range of special moves and attacks.
7. Super Smash Bros.: Ultimate
Super Smash Bros.: Ultimate is a crossover fighting game developed by Bandai Namco Studios and Sora Ltd. It was published by Nintendo. The game was released in December 2018 and it’s available for Nintendo Switch.
For this edition, all the previous fighters from Super Smash Bros have come back. The game features over 100 stages and each stage has a Final Destination and Battlefield versions. To make the experience more intense, there is new music for a total of over 800 tracks. There are several new arrangements to help make the experience more exciting.
8. Soulcalibur VI
Another one of the 23 best fighting games is Soulcalibur VI. This game was developed by Bandai Namco Studios and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. It was released in October 2018 and it’s available for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
SOULCALIBUR VI is a continuation of the warriors’ epic battles. The heroic conflicts take place in a lovely, fluid world designed with spectacular visual appeal and graphics. In this game, you can execute dynamic and visceral attacks with little effort. This edition marks a new era for the franchise and its legendary conflicts between the mighty Soul Swords.
9. Killer Instinct
Killer Instinct is one of the more popular fighting games Xbox One. It was developed by Xbox Game Studios, Rare, Iron Galaxy Studios, and Double Helix Games. The most recent version of the game was published by Xbox Game Studios. The first release of the game was in October 1994 and the latest release was in November 2013. It’s available for Xbox One, Arcade, Windows 10, Game Boy, and Nintendo 64.
The gameplay keeps its classic combo-based mechanics. You can kill-off your enemies using Ultra Combo. This is an automatic attack sequence to use only for ending a match. The “Instinct Mode” is a new feature of the Killer Instinct gameplay. The developers added enhancements to complement the playstyle traits of the characters.
10. Guilty Gear Xrd
Guilty Gear Xrd is one of the fighting games for PC developed by Arc System Works. The Arcade version of the game in Japan was published by Sega; the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 versions were published by Arc System Works (Japan), Aksys Games (North America), Sony Computer Entertainment and PQube (Europe); and the Windows version was published by Arc System Works.
The Arcade version was released in Japan in February 2014; the PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 versions were released in Japan and North America in December 2014, in Europe in June 2015; and the Windows version was released in December 2015.
This game makes use of a 6-button layout, five of which you would use for the attacks including kick, punch, slash, dust, and heavy slash. The sixth button is for respecting or taunting your competitor. Additionally, you can trigger other techniques by pressing 2 or 3 buttons simultaneously. The game has four modes – Network, Practice, Battle, and Story.
11. Pokkén Tournament
Pokkén Tournament is a fighting game developed by Bandai Namco Studios and published by Nintendo and The Pokémon Company. The Arcade version was released in Japan in July 2015, the Wii U version was released in March 2016, and the Nintendo Switch version was released in September 2017.
This is a fighting game that involves two fighters who battle each other with different Pokémon. Gameplay can shift between “Field Phase” wherein the Pokémon can freely move around the arena. You can play the arcade version of Pokkén Tournament using console-style controllers. You will immensely enjoy this because it focuses more on action.
12. Persona 4 Arena Ultimax
Persona 4 Arena Ultimax is a fighting video game developed by Arc System Works and Atlus. In Japan, it was published by Atlus, in North America, it was published by Atlus USA, and in Europe, it was published by Sega. The Arcade version of the game was released in Japan in November 2013 while the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions were released in Japan in August 2014, in North America in September 2014, and in Europe in November 2014.
In this game, characters from both Persona 3 and 4 do battle against each other using a wide range of persona abilities, special moves, and combos. Aside from the new moves and balance adjustments, a new S-Hold System permits you to charge up your attacks. Another new feature is the opportunity to select “Shadow Types.”
13. Dragon Ball FighterZ
Dragon Ball FighterZ is one of the fighting games two player, single-player, and multiplayer. It was developed by Arc System Works and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. The Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One versions were released worldwide in January 2016 and in Japan in February 2018. The Nintendo Switch version was released in Japan and the rest of the world in September 2018.
This new 2.5D DRAGON BALL FighterZ game is an offshoot of the very famous DRAGON BALL series and features spectacular fights performed by its all-powerful fighters. This game maximizes high-quality anime graphics. It brings fighting gameplay that you can learn easily but would find challenging to master. Aside from the unique moves each character possesses, you can also make use of the available universal moves.
14. Under Night In-Birth
Under Night In-Birth is a 2D fighting game developed by Ecole Software and French Bread. It was published by Sega and Arc System Works (Japan), Aksys Games (North America), and NIS America and PQube (Europe). It was released in September 2012 for Arcade, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation Vita, and Nintendo Switch.
This game has a lot of similarities with the previous Type-Moon-based game of French Bread. But it does have its own updates and added gameplay systems. The game has a 4-button layout, three of which are normal attack buttons that can cancel into each other. The main goal of this game is to completely deplete your opponent’s VIT gauge until it’s empty.
15. Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4
Naruto Shippuden: Ultimate Ninja Storm 4 is a fighting game developed by CyberConnect2 and published by Bandai Namco Entertainment. It was released in February 2016 and is available for Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.
It would not be difficult to follow through with this game if you have played the previous games. This edition allows you to take the battles to the walls and sides of each stage. One major change is the ability to have one of the characters on the wall while the other remains on the combat field.
16. Mortal Kombat X
Mortal Kombat X is a fighting video game developed by NetherRealm Studios and published by Warner Bros. Interactive Entertainment. It was released in April 2015 and is available for iOS, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows, Xbox One, and Android.
This combat game features two characters who fight each other using different attacks and special moves. It still includes the series’ trademark bloody and gruesome finishing moves. The game allows two players to do combat against each other or one player battling it out with the CPU. This new edition features two new finishing moves – Faction and Quality Kills.
17. The King of Fighters XIII
The King of Fighters is one of the 23 best fighting games developed and published by SNK. In North America, it was published by Atlus while in Europe, it was published by Rising Star Games. It was released in July 2010 for Arcade, Windows, Android, iOS, PlayStation 3, and Xbox 360.
This game has undergone some changes as it removed some features from the gameplay system and the dynamic camera used in prior games. One new feature is a Hyper Drive Mode that gives you unlimited Drive Cancels use allowing you to open new possibilities for combos. The edition also includes the multi-bar power gauge.
18. Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3
Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3 is a fighting game developed by Spike Chunsoft and published by Atari (Australia and North America) and Bandai (Europe and Japan). It was first released in October 2005 while the latest release was in October 2011. It’s available for PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3, Wii, Xbox 360, and PlayStation Portable.
Dragon Ball Z uses a third-person camera perspective. Each form here gets treated as its own character. In this edition, you can build your Ki gauge for the execution of different techniques while doing battle. Each character in the game has a set of Blast 2 skills. Characters also possess a numeric self-recharging gauge which gives you the ability to use Blast 1 skills.
19. EA UFC Sports 3
EA UFC Sports 3 is an MMA fighting game developed by EA Canada and published by EA Sports. It was released in February 2018 for PlayStation 4 and Xbox One.
This edition has similar basic concepts as its previous installments, retaining its realism in terms of sounds, movements, and physics. A new feature of the series is the “G.O.A.T.” career mode.For this, the choices you make throughout your career can have an effect on your path to greatness.
ARMS is one of the best fighting games on switch developed by Nintendo EPD and published by Nintendo. It was released in June 2017 for Nintendo Switch.
This is a 3D game which up to 4 players can play to control one of the different fighters. The game features 15 playable characters, 5 of them come as downloadable content. Each of the fighters in the game starts with three unique Arms that you can select to do battle. All fighters possess unique combat attributes.
21. Dead or Alive 5 Last Round
Dead or Alive 5 Last Round is another amazing fighting game developed by Team Ninja and published by Koei Tecmo. It was released in 2015 for Arcade, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, Microsoft Windows, Xbox 360, and Xbox One.
For outside Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 versions, developers have added new costumes and customized hairstyles. For Xbox One and PlayStation 4, they have added 2 new characters and 2 new stages. The version for these two consoles received upgrades on their graphics too.
22. Virtua Fighter 5
Virtua Fighter 5 is the final installment in the series of games developed by Sega AM2 and published by Sega. The Arcade versions were released from 2006 to 2011 while the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions were released in 2007 and 2012.
In this new version of the game, developers have reduced the throw speed from 8 to 12 frames. It introduces the Clash System to encourage a playstyle that is more “moral.” Offensive Move initiates an angled forward dash during evade maneuvers. When you press Kick or Punch OM, this initiates an attack that leads to a combo opportunity.
23. Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is a crossover fighting game developed by Capcom and Eighting and published by Capcom as well. The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 versions were released in 2011, the PlayStation Vita versions were released in Japan in 2011 and North America and Europe in 2012, the PlayStation 4 version was released in 2016, and the Microsoft Windows and Xbox One versions were released in 2017.
This is an arcade-style game with small changes from the basic gameplay of the original. You can choose teams of 3 different characters that will engage in one-on-one combat. You may also choose to swap between your characters at any time during a match.