Top 10 Best Fighting Games of All-time

Fighting games have been the lifeblood of our gaming universe for generations. They keep us on the edge of our seats with epic battle mechanics, legendary character line-ups, and PvP action that's as intense as a final boss fight.

Newbie or pro, you know the feeling: the pulse-pounding moment when you pull off that killer combo or nail the game-winning finisher. It's the kind of rush that makes you want to high-five the air (or your gaming buddy, if you've got one handy).

But here's the real quest: Which of these action-packed titles deserve a spot in the Fighting Game Hall of Fame? That's where you come in. Thanks to your input, we've gathered the ultimate lineup of fighting game royalty. These aren't just any titles; these are the games you voted as the GOATs for their groundbreaking mechanics, unforgettable heroes and villains, and their power to define and redefine the genre.

Ready to get your fight on? Whether you're into the nostalgia of 2D sprites or the jaw-dropping visuals of today's 3D smackdowns, buckle up. We're diving into the all-time greatest hits, from Street Fighter and Mortal Kombat sagas to the bone-crunching worlds of Tekken and SoulCalibur. Prepare for a walk down memory lane - and maybe find your next arena for digital dominance. Game on!
The Top Ten
1 Super Smash Bros. Brawl (2008) This Nintendo classic is the third installment in the Super Smash Bros. series, featuring iconic characters from various franchises, like Mario, Link, and Pikachu. It introduced the concept of Final Smash moves and brought in third-party characters, like Sonic and Solid Snake. Brawl is known for its fun, chaotic gameplay and extensive single-player mode, the Subspace Emissary.

For casuals, Brawl is probably the best Smash game. It's full of great single-player content that could last a single person ages, it's music is great, and it's easy to control.

However, for hardcore Smash competitors, Brawl is a horrible game. There is no tech skill. The game so slow it feels like I'm in training with the speed set to 1/2. Tripping will always be the worst mechanic put in any video game ever. The only combos that exist are chain grabs. Edge guarding doesn't even exist. And the game is so unbalanced that the main thing determining a character's spot on the tier list is their matchup against Meta Knight. It's even worse than 64, which is slow and campy but still has tech skill, edge guarding, and a balanced roster.

There are mods to improve gameplay, such as the famous Project M, which is the only reason competitive players might own this game. However, you can't call Brawl a good game because of its great modding scene. That is to say that you should only ever judge a game based on its vanilla state. If anything, the fact that Brawl requires mods to be enjoyable shows how bad Brawl is.

The fact that Brawl is #1 shows there is on competitive player influence on this list. Hardcore competitive players are the most dedicated part of the fan base, making them the most important. Because Brawl doesn't please this fan base it is the worst Smash game.

2 Tekken 3 (1997) A revolutionary 3D fighting game for its time, Tekken 3 stands out as a fan-favorite in the Tekken series. With its impressive character roster and fluid gameplay, it made a significant impact on the genre. Tekken 3 introduced iconic characters like Jin Kazama and Ling Xiaoyu while retaining fan favorites from previous games.

It is a perfect game. I have played this probably more times than another other game in my life. It is the second highest rated fighting game on both game rankings and metacritic, behind SoulCalibur. However I rated this higher because I don't know one person that played SC (cause it was Dreamcast and Arcade only), and I also have never seen an actual arcade machine of it, while I've seen several Tekken 3 cabs over the years. It also has more characters than SC and everything in this game just seems perfectly crafted. This is a fighting game masterpiece. Not only is the music amazing, the FMVs are awesome. The animation was all motion captured, which was mostly unheard of for games in 1997. This made the animations so fluid and the speed of the game was unmatched for 3D fighters until SoulCalibur. It was clear in the late 90s that Namco was the master of fighting games. This and SoulCalibur are still the two best 3D fighting games ever made.

3 Mortal Kombat (2011) Also known as Mortal Kombat 9, this reboot of the gory, visceral fighting game series returned to its 2D roots with updated graphics and gameplay mechanics. Featuring a robust story mode, intense fatalities, and the return of popular characters like Scorpion, Sub-Zero, and Raiden, this entry reinvigorated the franchise for a new generation.

The best Mortal Kombat ever done. 2d gameplay done well, awesome graphics, and two things most other fighting games don't have: an actual elaborated Story mode with a good storyline and a massive Challenge Tower with 300 challenges for you to waste your time in. Plus, all of the gore Mortal Kombat was always famous for is back. FINISH HIM!

This was like a love letter to Mortal Kombat Fans, they knew that MK vs DC was a bad game so they put a ton of effort into making sure that the fans were happy with this one, it had an amazing plot, gave relatively underrated characters like Nightwolf and Cyrax great storylines, and of course the absolutely incredible fatalities, my personal favourite being Sektor's Scarecrow fatality, oh and not to mention this was the game to introduce X rays.

This list is a joke really smash bro is one, Mortal Kombat should be number 1 best fighting ever made, who ever made this list need some good smack in the face from sonya blade.

4 Super Smash Bros. Melee (2001) This fast-paced GameCube classic is the second installment in the Super Smash Bros. series. Melee's tight controls, deep gameplay mechanics, and beloved cast of Nintendo characters have made it a competitive staple, with a dedicated fanbase still hosting tournaments even decades after its release.

Melee continues to be played competitively in tournaments all around the world more than ten years after its release. The game is well balanced, with over half of its characters consistently placing well in tournaments, it offers movement over much larger and more intricate levels than almost any other fighting game, and it has great graphics, soundtrack, and mechanics. The inclusion of items and custom game modes allows for complete beginners to have fun and do well without having to button mash (To many serious gamers' great delight, button mashing works worse in Melee than nearly any other fighting game), while the exclusion of items allows competitive players to have pure, unadulterated fights as technical and dramatic as any other fighting game. Not to mention the ability to play as all of the most iconic Nintendo heroes of all time!

The Melee Community is gigantic. It has spawned thousands of tournaments, players, a documentary, and fun for millions. Tons of content, ridiculously fast gameplay that is exciting and fun, and hundreds of trophies, modes, etc. Masterpiece. It is the best Super Smash Bros. Game, and the Best Fighting Game. (Mortal Kombat 2011 and SF2:Turbo Fighting are next).

5 Super Smash Bros (2014) Officially titled Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS, this fourth entry in the Super Smash Bros. series expanded the character roster with newcomers like Mega Man, Little Mac, and Rosalina. With updated graphics and smooth gameplay, it offered both casual and competitive players a thrilling experience on Nintendo's Wii U and handheld 3DS systems.

Let me just say that people who say Melee and Project M is better than this. Y'all are stupid. Smash 4 improves the physics and balances the roster a bit more evenly (except for Greninja and Bayonetta and Cloud). This game also takes practice and time to master almost every character. There is not one bad character. While the stages lack on the Wii U version. The 3DS Version has about 20 good stages out of about 30 which is impressive. This game would be better if Smash Tour didn't replace Subspace. Smash Tour isn't bad, but Subspace 2 would have been better. Smash 5 should be like this but enhanced graphics, Subspace 2 and less clones.

I mean, the roster is pretty balanced. Even Samus, which is considered a low tier can beat high tier characters like sheik and Diddy. It's all down to skills and it's not too fast like melee. The perfect fighting game for me!

Better than melee for a lot of reasons: more characters and stages, new melee copies are out of print, not ridiculously over centralized with less OP characters, eight player smash.

6 Tekken 6 (2007) The sixth main installment in the Tekken series, Tekken 6 added new characters and gameplay mechanics while refining its signature 3D fighting style. With its extensive character customization options and engaging single-player mode, Tekken 6 continued the series' tradition of delivering intense, combo-driven battles.

This game is way better than any other tekken game on the spot! It has great graphics, awesome combo moves, huge amounts of pain, and exquisite power within each character. Especially the character Law.

Best martial arts game ever made this game is pure skill and no powers.. This is truly a challenge to talk abt tekken is a giant by itself and hopefully it will continue

I am very surprised IGN rated this game 8.8. It's a masterpiece.

7 Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (2018) The most ambitious entry in the Super Smash Bros. series, Ultimate brings together every character from the franchise's history for an unparalleled roster. With improved graphics, new stages, and the addition of fan-requested characters like Ridley and King K. Rool, Ultimate offers a definitive Smash experience on the Nintendo Switch.

Good game, but the online SUCKS. It's actually terrible. They don't take non-competitive players into consideration at all, because they added GSP points which affects everyone. And it drops insanely every time you lose. It was much better when they had the "For Glory," and "For Fun," options. Also, I hate playing someone else's rules. There should be default settings that everyone has to play in that specific game mode.

The sheer amount of content is great, the learning curve is smooth, and the roster is ever-growing! Best game in the Smash Bros. series in my opinion

How is the Super Smash Bros. 64, Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl above this? Besides online, this deserves to reach Brawl's level on this list one day! Even ' Banjo-Kazooie is going to be in it! (As a DLC, you would have to pay $6 for him. I did that whEn I payed for JOKER FROM PERSONA 5, BOIS! )

8 Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 (2011) An updated version of Marvel vs Capcom 3, this crossover fighting game expanded the roster and balanced gameplay mechanics for an even more thrilling experience. With new characters like Doctor Strange, Phoenix Wright, and Ghost Rider, Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 delivers a frenetic, tag-team fighting extravaganza.

Should be higher has really intricate gameplay and plenty of tactics for high level play, and the excellent aesthetics compliment it very well, great game.

Best fighting game because of all the marvel and capcom characters I'm getting this game. I love it for its insane gameplay.

This is bull. This is my favorite fighter and it's this low.

9 Marvel Vs. Capcom 2 (2000) This crossover fighting game brought together characters from Marvel Comics and Capcom's video game franchises, like Street Fighter and Mega Man. Boasting a massive roster of 56 fighters and flashy, fast-paced gameplay, Marvel Vs. Capcom 2 remains a beloved entry in the series for its unique tag-team system and endless combo possibilities.

The crazy 56 character roster, mad fast-paced action and just excellent craft should have this one AT LEAST in Top 5 in my opinion.

Top 2 Fighting Games of all time, a crime it isn't even top 5.

This game is so hot the soundtrack and art this game is dang hot

10 Street Fighter II : The World Warrior (1991) This legendary 2D fighting game is responsible for popularizing the genre and introducing iconic characters like Ryu, Chun-Li, and M. Bison. With its deep gameplay mechanics, memorable stages, and catchy music, Street Fighter II set the standard for future fighting games and spawned numerous updated versions and sequels.

Street Fighter II is the game that jump started the Fighting series genre. It may not have a complexed story, but gameplay is decent and well developed, and most of the characters are extremely likeable.

This was the True inauguration, not only to its predecessor, but to the fighting game genre itself; with many other fighting games coming in as a joint second place: depending on your personal preference.

Street Fighter is like one of the first fighting games ever therefore it practically inspired most of these fighting games you can't beat that! That's like reaching the impossible!

The Contenders
11 Mortal Kombat X (2015) This brutal installment in the Mortal Kombat series brought the franchise to new heights with stunning graphics, bone-crunching gameplay, and a gripping story mode. Mortal Kombat X introduced new characters like Cassie Cage and Kotal Kahn while refining the mechanics and fatalities that fans love.

Big fan but it will not be number 1 never, excellent graphics, good voice acting, very good gameplay, pretty decent modes in general, mediocre story mode, good ideas for online modes, quite solid netcode but not impressive, variation system good in most of the cases but it's main problem it's the roster, pretty boring, 24 it's not that much having a couple of characters who look very similar, plus DLC characters after 2 weeks of release it's shame.

In conclusion it's good fighting game with a couple of missing things that can't be restored having boring micro transactions. Don't know if Tekken 7 but I'm pretty sure Street Fighter V will be better.

Mortal kombat 9 and x were a big comeback for the franchise! Xs reissue with added characters which is xl is by far my favorite game of all time!

The best fighting game ever. Dark, violent and brutal!

12 Street Fighter IV (2008) This long-awaited sequel revitalized the Street Fighter series with its 3D graphics, refined gameplay, and exciting new characters. With its accessible yet deep mechanics, Street Fighter IV became a staple in the competitive fighting game scene and inspired a new generation of players to pick up the controller.

Come on, you know it is the best...

13 Dragon Ball Z: Budokai Tenkaichi 3 (2004) This fan-favorite DBZ game boasts a staggering roster of over 150 characters from the Dragon Ball universe. Budokai Tenkaichi 3's immersive story mode, detailed cel-shaded graphics, and engaging gameplay mechanics made it a standout title for fans of both fighting games and the Dragon Ball series.

Ok to make the point clear to the DBZ haters, look because the game is from a series that you don't like (which by the way I love) that shouldn't automatically make you hate the game. I for a fact know someone (actually my cousin) who hates dragon ball z (or anime as a whole) but will play these games for HOURS. Best fighting game ever.

A very good Dragon Ball game and a good fighting game, with a lot of characters. (By the way this game is not from 2004, it was released in 2007)

In my opinion, this is the last elite DBZ game and they should make a DBZ game hall of fame. BT3 in the front w/ the company of BT2, Budokai, Budokai 3 and Burst Limit. 'enough said.

14 Street Fighter III: Third Strike (1999) The third and final version of Street Fighter III, Third Strike refined the gameplay and added new characters like Chun-Li and Remy. With its parrying system and striking 2D graphics, this game remains a favorite among competitive fighting game enthusiasts for its deep mechanics and strategic gameplay.

If you don't think 3rd strike is the best fighter of all time you're wrong and you should feel bad for being wrong.

15 Mortal Kombat: Armageddon (2006) As the seventh main installment in the Mortal Kombat series, Armageddon featured an extensive roster of over 60 characters and introduced a new Kreate-a-Fighter mode. With its epic Konquest mode and chaotic Motor Kombat racing mini-game, Armageddon aimed to please fans with its variety and content.

Story mode is great and I love the fighting in it but they kinda screwed up with versus mode, there are no combos but in the story mode is awesome.

Had every Mortal Kombat character it was great for Mortal Kombat nerds

16 Soul Calibur II (2002) The second installment in the Soul Calibur series, this weapon-based fighting game is renowned for its fluid gameplay and memorable characters like Nightmare, Ivy, and Kilik. Soul Calibur II introduced guest characters from other franchises, such as Link (GameCube), Heihachi (PS2), and Spawn (Xbox), adding variety to its already diverse roster.

! This shouldn't be at 19, it should be at least at number 4! This is one the best fighting games from one of the best fighting game franchises!

My fighting game.

17 Soul Calibur IV (2008) The fourth main entry in the Soul Calibur series, this game further refined its weapon-based combat while introducing new characters and gameplay mechanics. Notable for its guest characters from the Star Wars universe (Darth Vader, Yoda, and Starkiller), Soul Calibur IV offered a unique blend of fantasy and science fiction for fighting game enthusiasts.
18 Injustice: Gods Among Us (2013) This superhero fighting game brought together the iconic characters of the DC universe, like Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman. Developed by the creators of Mortal Kombat, Injustice features a deep story mode, interactive stages, and a unique clash system that allows players to wager their super meter during battles.

How could you not love pitting your favorite DC heroes & villains against each other? The characters have awesome, accurate movesets, the stages are blow-your-mind awesome-looking, & the character matchups are some of the most potentially-awesome possibilities! I have been playing this game for years without getting bored of repetition once. That's how awesome it is. How this is only #11 now, I have no clue.
- JohnOfArcades

From the makers of Mortal Kombat 2011, Injustice is the perfect balance fighting game. It has great and a lot of characters including Scorpion from MK itself. Also the dynamic gameplay with environment in gamearena make it looks so badass.

Great game. Cool storyline. Fun mechanics. STAR labs missions were fun to play. Oh, the hours I spent on BATTLES. This is a highly recommended game

19 Tekken 5 (2004) The fifth main entry in the Tekken series, Tekken 5 introduced several new characters and revamped the series' graphics and gameplay. With its detailed character customization, engaging single-player modes, and smooth 3D fighting, Tekken 5 solidified the series' status as a premier fighting game franchise.

Tekken is my favourite fighting game. Tekken 5 is my favourite Tekken. Awesome.

20 Mortal Kombat (1992) The original Mortal Kombat game shocked the world with its brutal, gory gameplay and iconic characters like Scorpion, Sub-Zero, and Sonya Blade. Its revolutionary digitized graphics and infamous "Fatalities" forever changed the fighting game landscape, leading to the creation of the ESRB rating system.

This game created the ESPN voting on games. How the hell is it No. 9?

Takken is no.1? Don't get me wrong, I like Tekken but Mortal Kombat fighters destroy the whole Tekken in 5 seconds. MK influenced tekken in many aspects. MK is the most creative and unique fighting game

It's just a timeless classic.

21 Tekken 2 (1995) The second entry in the Tekken series, this 3D fighting game introduced new characters like Jin's mother, Jun Kazama, and the demonic Angel. With its expanded roster, improved graphics, and engaging story mode, Tekken 2 continued to build on the success of its predecessor while further refining its gameplay mechanics.
22 Dead Or Alive 4 (2005) The fourth main entry in the Dead or Alive series, this 3D fighting game is known for its interactive environments, fast-paced gameplay, and detailed character models. With a diverse roster of fighters, including newcomers like Kokoro and returning favorites like Kasumi, Dead Or Alive 4 provides a thrilling experience for fans of the genre.
23 Tekken Tag Tournament 2 (2011) A follow-up to the original Tekken Tag Tournament, this 3D fighting game expanded the roster and introduced new tag mechanics. Featuring a mix of classic and new Tekken characters, the game delivered exciting, fast-paced battles that appealed to both casual and competitive players.

The best tekken ever...

Bro best game ever

24 Injustice 2 (2017) Gods Among Us, expands the roster with new characters like Supergirl, Gorilla Grodd, and Blue Beetle. With its in-depth story mode, RPG-like gear system, and impressive graphics, Injustice 2 delivers a satisfying experience for both comic book fans and fighting game aficionados.

Even better than the first one! Better rosters, epic storyline, and awesome multiplayer! Easily one of the best Video Games of 2017. 10/10

Obviously better than its predecessor, voice acting, graphics and more. All amazing

Amazing game roster is the most amazing ever I hope they make a third

25 The King of Fighters XIII (2010) The thirteenth entry in the long-running King of Fighters series, this 2D fighting game features a large roster of characters from various SNK franchises. With its intricate combo system, stunning hand-drawn visuals, and engaging story mode, The King of Fighters XIII showcases the series' evolution while staying true to its roots.

I am playing this since 2000 and it's all player move, combo, punch, kick, power are unique than others. It is one of the hardest but easiest to learn the move and combo. you will like it when your opposite player is human

King of fighters is the best fighting game. No overdone combos, no exaggerated camera view and colors. Moves are simple and the game is easy to understand. Plus, it's a 2D fighter in HD look. The classic fighting games were 2D and now you have it in HD. Every fighting game fan should try this game.

Beautiful 2D graphics and an excellent way to conclude the Ash saga. Honesty we learn the true intentions of a character that we use to hate.

8Load More
PSearch List