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.

Super Smash Brothers is a more interesting game because you don't have a health bar. Instead, you have a number. The higher the number, the easier you are to knock off the edge.

This game is more interesting because you need to adjust your fighting style based on the opponent's health, not just trap them in a corner and spam attacks until they are defeated.

This game has always been my favorite Wii game to play. I just love how you can get to play all types of Nintendo fighters, and I think that everyone should love it. If it wasn't for that game, Smash Bros Wii U wouldn't have come out either. It has proven to be my favorite game to play with friends (multiplayer), and I will keep on loving it forever.

When I was 5-7 years old, Link, Kirby, Luigi, and Pikachu were my favorite characters to beat opponents with. Whether you play alone, with friends, or family, you will keep on loving Nintendo for a long time.

2 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, a 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 in nearly any other fighting game. 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!

3 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 any other game in my life. It is the second highest-rated fighting game on both GameRankings and Metacritic, behind SoulCalibur. However, I rated this higher because I don't know one person that played SC (because 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 cabinets 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, but the FMVs are also 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.

4 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 spend your time on. 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 and gave relatively underrated characters like Nightwolf and Cyrax great storylines, and of course, the absolutely incredible fatalities. My personal favorite is Sektor's Scarecrow fatality. Oh, and not to mention, this was the game that introduced X-rays.

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 are better than this are mistaken. Smash 4 improves the physics and balances the roster a bit more evenly, except for Greninja, Bayonetta, and Cloud. This game also requires practice and time to master almost every character. There isn't one bad character.

However, the stages lack variety on the Wii U version. The 3DS version has about 20 good stages out of approximately 30, which is impressive. This game would be better if Smash Tour hadn't replaced Subspace. Smash Tour isn't bad, but Subspace 2 would have been a better choice. Smash 5 should be like this but with enhanced graphics, Subspace 2, and fewer clones.

6 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.

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.

27? It is the best game of all time. Other Smash games were good, but this game? I have been satisfied ever since I got it.

Great game, combining a huge roster with good fighting mechanics.

7 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.

The best martial arts game ever made. This game is pure skill and no powers. This is truly a challenge to talk about. 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.

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. It has really intricate gameplay and plenty of tactics for high-level play. The excellent aesthetics complement it very well. Great game.

The 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 the 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 in this game are 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 complex story, but the gameplay is decent and well-developed. Most of the characters are extremely likable.

This was the true inauguration, not only to its predecessor, but to the fighting game genre itself. With many other fighting games coming in at 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.

I am a big fan, but it will never be number one. The game has excellent graphics, good voice acting, and very good gameplay. The modes are pretty decent in general, although the story mode is mediocre.

It introduces good ideas for online modes and has quite solid netcode, but it's not impressive. The variation system is good in most cases, but the main problem is the roster, which is pretty boring. Having only 24 characters isn't that much, especially when a couple of characters look very similar. Plus, releasing DLC characters after just two weeks is a shame.

In conclusion, it's a good fighting game with a couple of missing elements that can't be restored, and it suffers from boring microtransactions. I don't know about Tekken 7, but I'm pretty sure Street Fighter V will be better.

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.
13 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 Third Strike is the best fighter of all time, you're wrong and you should feel bad for being wrong.

14 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, just 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 with the company of BT2, Budokai, Budokai 3, and Burst Limit. Enough said.

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.

The story mode is great, and I love the fighting in it, but they kind of screwed up with versus mode. There are no combos, but the story mode is awesome.

It 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 of the best fighting games from one of the best fighting game franchises!

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 and villains against each other? The characters have awesome, accurate movesets and the stages are incredibly impressive. 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 the environment in the game arena makes it look so badass.

19 Super Smash Bros. (1999) The game that started it all, this N64 classic brought together iconic Nintendo characters like Mario, Link, and Samus for an unconventional fighting experience. With its unique gameplay mechanics, like knocking opponents off the stage, Super Smash Bros. quickly became a fan favorite and spawned a beloved franchise.

Hands down. This fighting game needs to be at least top 5. Why? The use of crossover characters, wonderful graphics, the game's release in 1999, awesome music - this has got to be one of the most underrated video games with general acclaim from reviewers. The gameplay and multiplayer make this game one of the best games of all time!

20 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 favorite fighting game. Tekken 5 is my favorite Tekken. Awesome.

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 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?

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

23 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.
24 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.
25 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, an epic storyline, and awesome multiplayer. Easily one of the best video games of 2017. 10/10

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

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

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