While Fighting Game characters often have different attacks and playstyles, they usually still share the same basic commands. Pressing A results in a light melee attack, back results in blocking, double forward results in a dash, and so on...Except this character. This character has bizarre mechanics going on compared to other fighters. Maybe this character cannot jump but instead can float around. Maybe this character's crouching actually makes her taller. Whatever it is, playing this character won't be anything like playing the others. Mastering these gimmicks is a major part of this character.
The result of this weird control scheme can vary. Sometimes it makes the character a difficult to learn but very satisfying to master one, and sometimes it makes the character nigh impossible to play instead.
This character often uses variations of Confusion Fu. May invoke Damn You, Muscle Memory if one is too used to other characters.
A good way to determine if a character fits this trope is to ask "If the character lost his gimmick, would he still play similarly or very differently?". If the answer is the latter then it is this trope.
Different from Fighting Clown, which is about the character's whacky appearance rather than the actual mechanics (although the two may overlap). Different from Joke Character, lethal or not, as this character is intended to be a viable option without resorting to an obscure tactic. Also compare Mechanically Unusual Class, the more RPG-like sister.
The loligoddess Suwako Moriya from Hisoutensoku. Her standing is actually crouching, and her crouching is conjuring a lily pad underneath her, making her taller. Her regular walking is slowly hopping like a frog (and while hopping she counts as being in the air), and her ground dash is swimming underground, making her invincible to all attacks. Her air movement is her flapping her arms around, and is limited to several directions. Her attacks are relatively normal, though.
Koishi Komeiji is the whacky fighter of Hopeless Masquerade. To start, like Suwako, her dash is her prancing around while invisible, making her immune to all attacks. Unlike Suwako, her main whackiness is in her attacks. For most of her attacks, she doesn't instantly perform them when you input the commands. Instead, she "stocks" them and use it automatically when certain conditions are met. For example, her 8B is performed only when she's under the opponent, and Catch and Rose is activated only after you hit the opponent with another attack. Also, she needs about 1-2 seconds before the moves are ready to activate, so you really need to predict the situations beforehand.
To a lesser extent, Byakuren, who needs to charge her specials first before being able to actually use it.
Shadow Labrys from Persona 4 Arena. Other characters' Personas only appear for a short while to perform attacks, and then disappear. Shabrys' "Persona" Asterius however, stays on screen the entire time, follows Shabrys around, and can attack concurrently with her. To compensate for being around all the time, Asterius has armor so it can't be broken easily, and Shabrys' heavy Persona attack is actually telling Asterius to block. Playing Shadow Labrys is effectively controlling both her and Asterius at the same time.
Frank West has a Magikarp Power system - his moves aren't so impressive at first, but he can rack up "EXP" by comboing the enemy with enough hits and then takes a snapshot with his camera, in order to "level up". He has 5 levels; higher level means improved moves as well as unlocking certain moves to use.
Phoenix Wright plays entirely around "evidences" and Stance System: Investigation Mode (his weakest form) is mainly to find evidences, the Trial Mode is used to use the evidences as weapons. When he has 3 evidences ready, during this mode he can pull off an OBJECTION! which, if hits, will let him go to Turnabout Mode, with improved normal and special attacks, as well as his Lv 3 hyper that is the strongest in the game.
Guilty Gear: Robo-Ky has to manage two different meters: A thermostat, which builds up as he fights and can only be vented via a certain command or risk a damaging explosion. He also has a power gauge which, unlike everyone else, cannot be charged conventionally and can only be charged via a laid-out power mat. His special and Overdrive attacks drain from this power gauge.
BlazBlue: Just as Robo-Ky lacks a tension gauge, Hakumen replaces his heat gauge with a magatama gauge which automatically fills and can store up to 8 stocks. While other characters can perform their specials at will, each of Hakumen's specials uses a certain number of magatama stocks.
In Tatsunoko vs. Capcom, Gold Lightan and PTX-50A are very massive fighters (who are about 3 times the average height of other characters) and so they fight alone, as opposed to fighting in duets. They also move slowly and have to crouch often to attack.
In Dissidia: Final Fantasy, most characters fight using Bravery attacks to build up Bravery, HP attacks to deal HP damage, and landing attacks generates EX Force that fills an EX Gauge, when filled the character can enter EX Mode for a temporary power boost. With Gabranth however, his Bravery attacks are slow and weak and his HP attack automatically charges up his EX Gauge. When it fills and he enters EX Mode, his entire moveset changes, turning him into a Lightning Bruiser with powerful attacks and high movement speed, but only until the gauge depletes, at which point he goes back to normal and has to charge it up again.
In the Bleach DS fighting games, Don Kanon'ji has a "Ratings Meter", befitting his TV personality, where certain attacks do more damage the better he is performing. Missing attacks or calling for certain attacks when he does not have the energy decrease his ratings, while doing damage gains ratings. Taunting significantly increases his ratings.
Hanataro Yamada has a weapon that heals instead of cuts, then, when enough wounds are healed, it deals damage in one attack equal to the damage healed.
Nariko in Playstation All Stars Battle Royale fights using a "key pose" system that momentarily places her in different stances based on how she uses her Square attacks, made for opening up unique combo-trees. What makes her odd is that the game has a number of conventions tied to the Square attacks, and this in turn influences the button-placement for other common mappings: Up Square is generally a Launcher Move (hers is Up Triangle, which is usually used for Anti-Air attacks), Grounded Down Square tends to be a sweep/tripping attack (hers is a weird ground bounce) and Neutral Circle is a Counter Attack (hers is Neutral Triangle).
Dracula in Castlevania Judgment has little-to-no mobility and cannot be knocked down. His dash/sidestep moves are all changed to teleports, including a variant where he teleports directly behind the opponent. Rather than jump, he teleports into the air and can stay up there for as long as his super meter holds out. The majority of his attacks, including normal ones, are projectiles and ranging moves. Basically, he utilizes a variant of his standard Castlevania moveset, in contrast to other boss characters who are given more traditional fighter designs.
Super Smash Bros. - In the first installment 3 of the 12 had at least one quirk making them different form the standard character template. Yoshi's command for third jump was instead a projectile, but he gained armor during his extended double jump. Ness' third jump was a remote control projectile that you had to hit yourself with to get an aerial boost, and Jigglypuff had no 'third jump' at all, instead a combination of her neutral special and 4 'double jumps' were used for recovery.
Melee added the Ice Climbers, where one player would control two characters simultaneously, Zelda who could transform mid battle, and Pichu whose attacks damaged itself.
Brawl made Samus unusual in that her Final Smash triggered a transformation. Olimar, where the majority of his attacks are tied to his Pikmin, Lucario who get's stronger the more damage he takes and points he falls behind, and Pokemon Trainer who not only can rotate between three transformations, but if you stay in any for too long you actual start to get weaker. This makes for about 8 of 35 characters that are different from the typical mold.
From pre release material both Mega Man and Rosalina are shaping up to be unusual fighters in Smash 4. Mega Man has projectiles for his basic attacks and Rosalina fights using a Luma as a puppet.
Both Voldo and Dampierre's from Soul Calibur main attacks largely involve being unable to block due to their stances, be they facing away from the enemy or being downed on the ground.
Tekken: Dr. Bosconovitch (only in the third game) spends his time prone to the ground and (at his best) crouching; he never jumps or indeed stand still. It's tricky both to play and fight him.
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