In a world where powerful police states are constantly on the verge of bloody conflict, the influence of organized crime is omnipresent, science has run wild and Eldritch Abominations are on the prowl, one fiendish artifact stands above it all, the Skull Heart. This legendary artifact has the power to grant a young woman’s wishes. If she has an impure heart, which so far includes all who have ever tried to use it, even a selfless wish will be twisted in the vilest of ways. Seven years ago, the world was engulfed in the Grand War. Queen Nancy Renoir of the Canopy Kingdom found the Skull Heart and wished for peace, but found herself transformed into a fearful instrument of her twisted wish… a pale and lovely tempest, a beautiful nightmare – the Skullgirl! Three nations had to stop their war to team up to defeat the former queen – in the end her wish was granted, as an uneasy peace formed following her demise. Rumors have surfaced about the appearance of a new Skullgirl. In response, many have mobilized with varying intent: from the destruction of the Skull Heart to using the artifact to their own ends. Can this devastating cycle be put to rest or will history repeat itself? Welcome to the world of Skullgirls!
Skullgirls is the culmination of nearly a decade's worth of work from Mike Zaimont (project lead, proprietary engine designer, well known tournament player), Alex Ahad (creative director) and the talented developers at Reverge Labs. This six button, 2D fighter aims to garner a following among both veterans and newcomers alike with a plethora of great ideas. Standout features include but are not limited to holding down the start button in order to prevent accidental pauses and great button config options that allow you to customize your buttons whether you are in a match or the character select screen. Recognizable tools such as the huge "Marvel vs Capcom" super jumps are closer to the ground and pushblock is present. Chain combos, similar to those seen in Vampire Savior, assists, tag ins/outs, snapbacks, level 1/3 supers and alpha counters are also all central to the gameplay. There will be eight characters at launch but aside from sharing the same health ratings they are totally unique and all equipped with the tools to compete. A number of DLC characters are also going to be made from scratch as post release support. More info can be seen here and on the SRK Wiki. Free content and patches will also be added to the game: Spectator Mode, Internal move lists, Online Training Mode, 8 man lobbies and Youtube Uploads couldn't make it for launch but may(move list for sure) be added to the game in the near future. You'd be doing yourself a favor by checking this gem out.
Features original character portraits, >200 original illustrations and characters outside of the main cast. Endings are non canon. The Story Mode trailer can be seen here.
Skullgirls' online experience is built upon the "Good Game, Peace Out" GGPO networking library which most in the fighting game community recognize as a key tool for a smooth online experience. Unique to this console implementation of GGPO is the ability to personally adjust your delay settings before each online match just like the PC program. If you prefer, you can of course use the suggested settings that the game will offer you depending on you and your opponent's connection. Conveniently enough, opponent ping times are displayed so you won't have to guess what 3-4 "bars" actually means as has become the norm in the genre. Mike Zaimont gives us a great piece on GGPO and how it can enhance your online experience.
Infinite Prevention System
In most games, mechanics like hitsun decay or gravity scaling are used to prevent infinite combos and other problematic situations. In Skullgirls, if the game detects that a player is looping a combo, the hit-sparks will turn red and the opponent can break out of it with a burst by pressing any button. However, as long as the player does not loop, the combo can continue. Something as simple as st.lp+st.hk, st.lp+st.hk, st.mp+st.hk may look like a loop, but starting the third string with a different command (standing medium punch in this case) does not trigger the IPS and allows you to continue your combo. The end result is combo flexibility akin to Xmen vs. Street Fighter sans the infinities. Creativity is encouraged as a large pool of normals are offered by the classic six button setup and each character has two launchers. Bursts can also be baited with the right timing. You could theoretically cycle through all the moves for a character without ever running into the IPS once if you use assists and
have a bionic arm
Variable Tag Battles
Before the start of battle, each player has the option of picking one to three fighters. The damage output and health of your character(s) change depending on how many characters you and your opponent pick ala the ratio system of Capcom vs SNK 2. Picking one character will give you more damage and stamina in order to make up for the lack of staple team strengths like assists, DHCs and regenerating health. The advantage of the ratio system is that it allows a much wider range of match ups that can satisfy the tastes of "1v1" fighters (Street Fighter fans), "2v2" fighters (Tatsunoko/SFxT) and even Mahvel fans who love their "3v3" bouts. The chart below details boosts for all teams on the left side of the fight (including normally lopsided matchups like "1v2", "1v3" and "2v3").
Credit to worldjem7 from SRK for the ratio chart.
While each character comes with two preset assists, Skullgirls also offers support for custom assists which can be chosen at the character select screen by inputting the move and recording it instantly. Supers, jumps and normals/specials from post jump state are barred. Any ground action can be chosen such as throws, normals, command moves, dashes, directional charge moves and special moves. All assists have 3 frames of vulnerability at start so even normally invincible moves can't be spammed recklessly as assists.
Unblockables exist in many fighting games and they are an extremely, sometimes too much so, strong tactic that cannot be evaded if executed correctly. In Skullgirls, after a character blocks a high or low, they are protected for a tiny period of time from both high and low attacks. The protection is long enough that a player can successfully defend against the first attack and still be protected from the would be unblockable. This cuts down on nearly imperceptible unblockable mixups and pushes players towards footsies and pokes into combos.
You'll can enter this virtual practice chamber directly from versus mode or from the Main Menu when you need a quiet place to hone your skills. You will have access to hitstun bars which help you develop effective combos quickly and you can play with active hit/hurt box data for a better understanding of the roster's moveset potential. All the staples of training mode (infinite life, variable time, meter adjustments, etc.) combined with these powerful features are sure to help you take your game to the next level.
In order to shift the game’s focus from executing difficult moves to fighting strategically, Skullgirls uses simple inputs (quarter circles instead of 720s or pretzel motions). Changes have been made especially for the 360 motion, a nuisance since the first spinning piledriver. When the game detects an attempted 360 motion, it will prevent you from jumping, a relief to all current and would-be grappler fans. There is also a change to inputs that solves the dragon punch issue that makes for awkward slight pauses and mistakes while applying pressure. Walking forward and using a qcf.attack input unexpectadly leads to an annoying dragon punch while walking forward in many modern 2D fighters. Pressing half circle forward while walking in Skullgirls results in a normal fireball giving players a neat way to move forward while applying fireball pressure. A neat collection of fighting game lingo and terms is listed on the SRK Wiki(look below) for your convenience.
Building Super Meter
Players can build up the first bar of super meter by whiffing attacks, but only if they stay in place or are moving forward which helps to keep the flow of the game more offensive in nature. A new meter building feature is the increased amount of meter gained when you are caught in a large combo consisting of normal hits. Instead of being given "comeback" mechanics at the press of a button, the victim's meter gain will catch up with their opponent's gains if the combo is long enough.
Seventeen lessons each covering a range of subjects including footies, poking, blocking, mixups and more using differing levels of difficulty. You'll learn the fundamentals of most 2D fighting games here thanks to these drills. An unfinished, prototype version of one of these tutorials can be seen here.
Skullgirls features a powerful 3D engine that works behind the scenes to provide interesting new properties for the 2D face of the game. Characters are assembled from three layers (line, shading and color) and colored via a custom shader as shown in the E3 2011 art process video. They are illuminated by dynamic rim lights and per-pixel lighting generated by light sources in the environment and hit sparks from normal attacks, specials and supers.
The backgrounds themselves are 3D, although they use minimal geometry and high-resolution textures to retain a painterly look. Other distinguishable background details include numerous cameos by possible DLC characters (as spectators, in windows, as neon signs, etc.) and environmental impact caused caused by fights between you and your opponent (see shaking trees and falling leaves in Maplecrest). Skullgirls also boasts a massive number of animation frames with an average of 1400 frames across the cast; only the sprite work in the Third Strike series is comparable. The sprites themselves are also of an extremely high resolution. They're twice the size they are on the screen for filtering and zoom-in purposes.
A robust palette and recoloring system allows for a a wide range of pseudo "skins" and "costumes". Some of these are even references to other games, cartoon/anime, etc. A discussion of the coloring system can be found here. Colors are visible as you scroll through them in the character select screen and each comes with a button shortcut to save time in the future. Each character will launch with nine colors (plus some number of unlockables ones) and more will be made in the future. There are no plans for a color editor.
Reverge Labs has announced that Skullgirls' jazzy soundtrack is composed by multiple talented individuals such as Michiru Yamane, Vincent Diamante(who composed the Flower Soundtrack), Brenton Kossak & Blaine McGurty. Michiru was a lucky find who adds her own special feel to the game with tunes reminiscent of the widely known Castlevania games. The OST is now available on CDbaby, Amazon MP3 and itunes. Samples are available at the main site along with a piece on her acquisition. A custom soundtrack option is also available for the PS3 version!
Community & Guides:
The SRK Wiki built by dedicated fans has pretty much everything you would need to learn the game at an intermediate level or above. Use it and watch your game evolve quickly! Answers to more specific questions can be found in the SRK SG General FAQ or from excerpts (Part I, Part II, Part III, Part IV) from the SRK Q&A Topic. Even more information and other players can be found in the Shoryuken and Dustloop Skullgirl subforums. Also check out up and coming fan blogs/sites such as the Canopy Kingdom and Milktoast.tv.
Each and every Wednesday and Friday, Whiteboard Wednesdays and Fan Art Friday are posted on the Reverge Labs site. A compilation of past entries can be found here. They give you a look into the minds of the artists who work at Reverge Labs as well as the developing and artistically inclined fanbase respectively.
Salutations from Filia
E3 2011: Peacock character walkthrough
Parasoul, Reporting for Duty!
Exclusive Parasoul character walkthrough
Ms. Fortune Gets Her Head In the Game
Exclusive Ms. Fortune character walkthrough
Commencing Experiment 0-84 - Project Painwheel
Painwheel Walkthrough Part I
Painwheel Walkthrough Part II
Painwheel Developer Commentary
Nurse Valentine, Report to the O.R., Stat
Exclusive Valentine character walkthrough part 1
Exclusive Valentine character walkthrough part 2
Exclusive Double character walkthrough part 1
Exclusive Double character walkthrough part 2
Video Primer - This is a demonstration of many of the concepts discussed above
Skullgirls: Interview with Mike Z
Exclusive Skullgirls Interview Evo 2011
EVO Panel 2011 - Skullgirls: New Age of Heroines Part I (Parts II - VII can be found on official Skullgirls youtube channel)
SPECIAL! Inside look at Skullgirls![HD]
Exclusive General Game Updates Walkthrough Part 1
Exclusive general game updates walkthrough part 2
E3 2011: Art Style Walkthrough Part I
E3 2011: Art Style walkthrough part 2
Live from the Comboratory feat. Skullgirls
Fighterpedia Episode 7-It's Skullgirls baybee!
Crocodile-Your proofreading and watchful eye kept this OT from becoming a grammatical nightmare. Your help with the images is also greatly appreciated. This OT wouldn't be half as good without your input.
Ravidrath-For your awesome attention to this tiny little community on GAF. Thanks so much for providing the art and being so trusting. <3
El Sloth-You were the first guy to help me out when I was first designing the skeleton for the thread. You have no idea how much you helped me in the earlier phase of this OP's creation. Thanks a bunch, dude. :')
SkullGAF-You guys deserve big thank you for your support until now. SG wouldn't even register on GAF if it weren't for you guys who kept the hype alive.
LADIES AND GENTLEMEN.....SHOWTIME!