I always like it when videogames include creative fighting styles. Lots of games have swords and magic—and in a medium that’s been going on for multiple decades, how do you make your characters stick out in combat?
This isn’t a top (number) list because I have no way of knowing if these are the most creative combat styles. But I know that they’re certainly more creative than most.
Bubble Power – Spongebob Squarepants: Battle for Bikini Bottom
Any time I mention this game, I’m always met with strange reactions from people. And I can’t blame them. The idea of a game being both “licensed” and “actually a really good game” is like finding a unicorn.
While enemies are spread out everywhere across Bikini Bottom, Spongebob has to be present for all of the game’s boss fights—so it’s safe to say that he’s pretty important in terms of the game’s combat.
And he fights using bubbles. Yeah, maybe this would be seen as a little bit lame, but there’s two things you have to realize. For one, the Spongebob universe is largely underwater—so it makes sense from a thematic perspective.
And for two, at his strongest, Spongebob can use his bubble wand to create a homing rocket bubble thing.
Yeah, his health is represented in pairs of underwear.
Infinity Sword – Elsword
Two combat styles have been around as long as fantasy has even been a videogame genre: swords and magic. They’re usually considered opposites, with the only way of being good at both is fighting in a specific way that uses both. Often time, this comes in the form of a “Magic Knight” or a “Spellblade” class—generally, a class that uses a sword to cast magic. Here’s where things become different from the norm.
Elsword‘s Infinity Sword class can wield multiple swords, and through the use of MP, can add even more. He can even summon a Phantom Sword, which trails behind him and attacks enemies whenever he does. Rather than using a sword to cast magic, he uses magic to cast swords. I certainly think it’s cool, and since I’ve never seen it before, it must be rather original too.
Luiginary Powers – Mario & Luigi: Dream Team
Nintendo games seem to have a lot of “fighting the player using your babies”. Whether it’s certain kinds of paragoombas in Super Mario Bros. 3, or the eggs thrown by Yoshis, it seems that offspring are supposed to be considered lethal weapons. But imagine if you could fire your children out of a gun. That might sound awesome, but you’d have to wait nine months to reload! Better make those shots count.
Now imagine if you wielded family members—not so much as ammunition, but more like…an element?
In Mario & Luigi: Dream Team, Mario gains the power to wield massive quantities of Luigis at once. Probably the most ridiculous sentence I’ll ever have to write.
Even something as simple as a jump is made interesting when it’s Luigi-charged.
Mario can jump so hard that it summons Luigis, ride a Katamari made entirely out of Luigis, or create a typhoon made of Luigis.
This kind of ability is just so random—and yet, Mario seems to have it down pretty well. It’s definitely an awkward and unconventional method of attack, yet it’s strangely effective. Besides, those are words that Nintendo probably used to describe Luigi in the first place. It ain’t easy being green.