I have played a ton of characters in different fighting games. It’s almost a running joke how often I switch characters during my tenures. I know some may find it hard to believe that I have characters that I managed to stick with or resonate with for a while, but lo and behold, here are 10 characters that really solidified my playstyle throughout my fighting game career:

10. Jack-O, Guilty Gear Strive

I adored Jack-O mostly because she was very good at just making chaos happen. Frame data gets thrown out the window with her, and it’s very easy to get people to crack, even if you aren’t necessarily pressuring them up close.

9. Cell, Dragon Ball FighterZ

This is much more of a cool factor character than anything, but Cell was one of the characters that got my first ever local top 8, and his intro will never, ever get old.

8. Xiaoyu, Tekken

Long before I started playing fighting games competitively, I played a lot of Tekken casually. Ling Xiaoyu was my main. The tricksy and slippery character was paramount to my understanding of how fighting games worked, years before I realized I would call this genre my home.

7. Wagner, Under Night in Birth

Ah, Erika Wagner. The character that made me realize I wanted to play like an asshole. Wagner was so good at just ignoring whatever you thought you were trying to do, and just running you over, exactly my type of gameplay.

6. Raven, Guilty Gear XRD Rev 2

Raven, on the other hand, made me realize that I also liked being annoying in neutral. I didn’t play Rev 2 very long, but when I did, in enjoyed Raven so much that I’m holding out as long as I can for him in Strive.

5. Noel, Melty Blood Type Lumina

More recently, Noel is kind of a combination of Raven and Cell, having extremely good projectiles, huge buttons, and a very stable, yet forgiving playstyle

4. Striker, DNF Duel

Striker falls under the Wagner spectrum, she was the first character that taught me the importance of establishing a win condition as early as you can, even if you’re losing. She will likely be my main in the game moving forward, as she plays very close to an Under Night character already.

3. Parasoul, Skullgirls

Parasoul is one of the coolest characters I’ve ever played, mostly due to the sheer creativity at your disposal. Every Parasoul plays differently, and in a game like Skullgirls, which already gives you a ton of freedom; she is by far the most freestyle character I’ve ever played.

2. Young Link, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

I had a brief foray into the competitive Ultimate scene, and even though I started with Pichu, I ultimately landed on Young Link. Similar to Jack-O, Young Link enabled my wanting to cause chaos and just throw things all over the place. If I ever go back to the game, I will definitely pick him back up.

1. Beowulf, Skullgirls

This character is the most fun I’ve ever had playing a fighting game. Beowulf barely counts as a fighting game character, because he plays like a Streets of Rage character. His design is quite literally tailored to get the crowd into it, with a crowd in the background cheering with every wrestling move he does. Being a pro wrestling fan myself, Beowulf checks all the right boxes when it comes to being a splash in all of the communities I’m in.

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