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The simplistic player-vs-player style of Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat is easy to get addicted to. Your character is on one side, the opponent (or AI bot) is on the other, and you duke it out to see who comes out on top.
And while multiplayer games don’t focus so much on this style any more, it’s not entirely out of fashion yet. In fact, some of the best fighting games are actually available for free as Flash games in your browser, and I’ll cover some of them below.
The main draw of games like Mortal Kombat was the speed with which you had to play and no Flash game replicates that better than Gun Mayhem and its sequel. You play as a character in a multi-platform world, jumping up and down and shooting at opponents with the gun granted to you. Throughout the level, power-ups and better guns will drop from the sky, and you can select special powers at the start of the level to boost your player. It doesn’t have online multiplayer, but you and your friend can use one keyboard and shoot till there’s only one man standing. The game can be a bit heavy, so you can use these tricks to improve performance on Flash games.
Flash Bash is as close to Street Fighter as you’re going to get. The graphics are not as good as the original, but a lot of the elements are copied, including gameplay, player styles and even some of the moves. At its core, it’s a basic player vs. player game where you can move around, punch and kick, unleashing power moves with the right keyboard combos (like shooting a fireball with Down+Forward+Punch) — helpfully, the combos are noted in the pause menu. Best played in full-screen mode!
Also, I can’t recommend Armor Games enough as one of the best Flash game repositories on the web.
Urban Sumo’s instructions are in Spanish, but don’t let that dissuade you from playing this fun fighting game. The controls are simple: move with the arrow keys, A and S to punch or kick, and D to grab. When your power meter is full, hit Spacebar to launch a special attack. There’s no two-player mode, but the bots are good enough to challenge you while keeping you entertained at the same time.
The graphics might not be great, but the gameplay of World Boxing Tournament 2 is surprisingly addictive. It’ has just three attack buttons and a block button, but the isometric ring provides a different setting from the likes of Flash Bash and the judicious use of punches and blocks makes it more challenging too. You can’t expect to go bashing away aimlessly and win here; you’ll need to time your punches right, and slip in that massive hook to knock your opponent out. And yeah, it’s got 2-player mode for a quick office break!
There’s no player-vs-player action in Rival Rage, but this has the best graphics of all the games featured here. The anime style complements the speed of the game, which has you playing as one of four characters taking on the others in a tournament. The controls are easy, as is the gameplay, as long as you don’t get cocky! I’d suggest stowing away your Special Skill move unless you actually need it.
Bonus: Cowboy Duel
While not technically a fighting game, I wanted to include Cowboy Duel in this round-up because of how much fun it is while having some of the same elements as the others. Again, there’s no player-vs-player action here, but you do get one of the best player-vs-bot games. Playing as a cowboy, you have to ask yourself if you’re the fastest gun in the West. As soon as the level starts, you shoot your rival in the duel using the six bullets in your revolver — different parts of the body have different levels of damage, so make sure you aim well!
Needless to say, it was impossible for me to play every single fighting Flash game on the internet, so I must have missed a few good ones. What’s your favourite Flash fighter? You must know a few if you’re visiting some of the best websites for fighting game fans.
I’d also like to know, how often do you play Flash games in your browser now that there are so many great fighting games available on smartphones?
Image credit: nikcname
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