Origin of Storms was one of a handful of fighting games at Play NYC 2018. I checked it out on Sunday morning, winning a decent victory against a random attendee of the convention. The game seemed pretty solid for a prototype. I wanted to see how I would fare against someone who was more well-versed with the characters and asked one of the developers to go up against me. I also specifically asked them to come at me full blast.
I could pick from one of any number flowery phrases to try and state how I put up an excellent fight and just barely lost, but the truth of it is that I got my ass handed to me badly. Another developer wanted to take a shot, and I faced an even more severe beating. This took me back to the fond memories of high school when one of my best and closest friends would wipe the floor with me in pretty much any fighting game that existed. Have a gander at some prototype gameplay footage to see the kind of experience I had on the show floor at Play NYC 2018:
Like many fighting games, Origin of Storms builds on its predecessors. This game, in particular, owes a good bit to Bloody Roar in that every character will have a sort of transformation that temporarily makes them more powerful. Knowing when and how to best use this will be a key factor in determining how well you do in a fight. Other classic fighting elements like a super meter are unsurprisingly present. In terms of the movement, it felt a little closer to the Guilty Gear style of games with the ability to double jump and land multi-hit air combos.
While the demo at Play NYC only had a single character, Origin of Storms has plans for a robust cast of characters. Each of the game's characters has a certain elemental affinity. Some characters will have an advantage or disadvantage against their opponent depending on the different elemental types. This particular design choice was a bit of a curiosity to me—what's to stop players from counter-picking for the advantage?
Of course, Origin of Storms wouldn't be the only fighting game that has to solve the problem of counter-picking. Plenty of fighting games have fighters that are innately strong or weak depending on their opponent, and some tournaments and/or games make use of a "blind pick" solution to prevent counter-picks entirely (save for sheer luck). There's also the matter of how high-level fighting gameplay is largely about timing and landing your moves at just the right time; this alone might nullify the elemental advantage/disadvantage for the best players out there.
Origin of Storms is still pretty early on in its development. I had plenty of fun playing it, and it seems like a mechanically-solid game that looks pretty darn good for an up-and-coming indie title. I'm looking forward to seeing how this one turns out.
What do you think of Origin of Storms? How do you solve the problem of counter-picking in friendly games? Do you think indie fighting games can hold up against the big boys? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to check out what else we saw at Play NYC by going to our Play NYC 2018 Coverage Hub.