Best Fighting Game Ever: MUGEN

in #coldplay4 years ago (edited)

The fighting game genre of videogames is full of memorable games, both in the good and bad sense. MUGEN is the only one that lets you combine said games and make it as good as you want. 

Story and Concept (Includes some technical stuff):

This is NOT a game in the usual sense: M.U.G.E.N is a freeware ( 2D fighting game engine (yes, not game: GAME Engine) created by the (now dissapeared, again) Elecbyte, written in C with the Allegro library (latest versions use the SDL library) and originally released in July 1999 for MS-DOS, and in November 2001, development translated to Linux.  . For a time, Elecbyte had a running request for donations on their site  to legally obtain a Windows compiler so they could make a Windows  version of M.U.G.E.N. The development group discontinued this  project in 2003 and shut down their site. Since the shutdown, projects replicating MUGEN have appeared, most famously IKEMEN. But even with the clone projects and Elecbyte dissapearing, the MUGEN community still kept going thanks to speculation  pointing

  at leaks made public of a private Windows-based M.U.G.E.N beta that was provided to donators. 

WinM.U.G.E.N (Even more technical stuff):

  The private WinM.U.G.E.N beta contained a two-character roster limit,  locked game modes, and nag screens. With the beta leaked and Elecbyte  gone, a "no limit" hack that removed most of these limitations was made  available in 2004 by Rou Hei, followed by subsequent updates to deal  with bugs and other issues. This version of M.U.G.E.N is  functionally the same as the last Linux release, though with subtle  differences and unique issues (mostly revolving around proper music and  music plugin support). Due to the changes between the DOS and Linux  versions of M.U.G.E.N, many older characters required at least  the SFF files to be modified so the engine could display palettes  correctly (notably on portraits). This version also had some changes in  how certain CNS script controllers functioned, which caused some minor  upset amongst the community. Those that could still run the DOS version  in some form stayed with that version and even offered DOS patches to  downgrade characters for compatibility with the older version.In May 2007, a hacked version of WinM.U.G.E.N was released by a third party; this hack added support for high-resolution stages (such as those seen in Guilty Gear X) at the cost of losing support for standard resolution M.U.G.E.N  stages. Later that month, another hack was done to add support for  high-res select screens. In July 2007, another hack—this one created by  Sion and Kung Fu Man, based on the last high-res hack—allowed for only  the select screen to be high-res, not the stages. In December 2007, a  hack from an anonymous source allowed both low-res and hi-res stages in  the same build, with only a single line of code necessary for the hi-res  stage support. 

 In mid-2007, Elecbyte's site returned, though not without some  controversy as to its legitimacy, as it only showed a single logo with  Google ads on the side. On the 26th of July, a FAQ was added to the  site, which claimed that Elecbyte would release a fixed version of WinM.U.G.E.N  before major format changes in the next version. Those formatting  changes would supposedly remove compatibility in regards to older works:  "Do not expect old characters to work. At all."Despite some  widespread agreement in the M.U.G.E.N community that the new site was a  fake, things changed around two years later when a new release  candidate, MUGEN 1.0, was added to the site. The 1.0 version offered OpenGL support as well as proper HD display options, victory quotes, and  improved stability as a whole. The supposed widespread incompatibility  of older works was never a problem; Elecbyte took steps to ensure that  properly-coded characters would not malfunction in the new engine (or  would require minimal updates), though screenpacks were not necessarily  subject to the same rule. MUGEN 1.0 left the "Release Candidate" stage in January 2011; MUGEN 1.1 was eventually released in August 2013. There have been no updates to the engine since then (This has also led to a slight feeling of decay in the community). 

How hard is to install?

The engine itself is pretty easy to install: just dezip the zip. file. The problems start with installing the chars and stages: while its not rocket science, it requires some file-exploring, and in inexperienced hands can lead to your copy being damaged (Do not erase anything included with the copy unless Avast tells you its definitively a virus). The steps are like this (At least for mugen 1.0 and BETA 1.1):

For Chars:

1. Download the char

2. Unzip the char file in the "char" folder. I think you could also leave it zipped and MUGEN will still admit it, im not sure.

3. Go to the "data" folder

4. Find the select.def file. Open it with the notepad

5. In the select file there should be instructions in how to add chars and stages: Just put the name of the folder that contains your char´s data.

6.Run MUGEN to see if it works

For stages:

1. Download the stage

2. Put the on the "stages" folder

3. Unzip the stage (I still don´t know if MUGEN also admits zipped stages)

4 & 5: the same as steps 3 and 4 for chars

6. More or less like step 5 for chars, only instead of putting the folders name you put the name of the stage´s def like this: stage.def. (You can also assign the stage to an specific char: in select.def there should be instructions for this as well as for other things).

7. Run MUGEN. Unless you have VERY few stages, i´ll recommend testing first in VS. Mode, where you can select stages.

Pages to visit: (*asterisk marks which page´s info I used to make most of this post, most info was about the history of the engine: the explained install process was made by me)

*MUGEN TV tropes ( WARNING: Addictive)

*MUGEN´s Wikipedia article

The MUGEN Fighters Guild and it´s subpages (only the one´s that seem better and more important from my perspective, there are other subpages that could be better than these):

Trinity MUGEN (the forum is not very active, but sometimes good chars are posted)     

Salty Bet and it´s rival: SpriteClub. Both are MUGEN betting sites in which you bet what char is going to win against what char. The money used is not real, so don´t worry about going bankrupt.

The MUGEN Archive. Contains A LOT of characters: problem is, most are bad. Also it´s infamous between creators due to it´s Warehousing (Posting MUGEN creations, often without the autor´s permission)

MUGEN Database: An Mugen Wiki based on Wikia

Mugen Free for All: Yet another Warehousing site, also contains downloads for every MUGEN version, and the tools to modify them

So, enjoy the fight, be careful when downloading, don´t pay for chars, stages or MUGEN software, etc. Enjoy!


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