Created By: shiro_okami on July 12, 2014 Last Edited By: shiro_okami on July 21, 2014

Fighter Archetypes

Index of fighter archetype tropes (offense vs. defense, power vs. speed).

Name Space:
Page Type:
Regarding combat ability, sometimes you just can't have it all, and you have to choose one ability over another. There may actually be a good reason why, as increasing one ability may decrease another. In video games, characters are specifically given different strengths and weaknesses as a form of Competitive Balance. There are four basic combat abilities, with two being diametrically opposed to the other two.

  • Offense: How effective a character/machine is in striking the target.
  • Defense: How effective a character/machine is in surviving an attack.
  • Power: How much physical power a character/machine has
    • Offensive: how hard they can strike the target using their strength
    • Defensive: how much damage they can physically withstand via the durability of their body or armor.
  • Speed: How fast a character/machine can move, either referring to general mobility but also
    • Offensive: how fast they can strike the target (before it can react) and how much they can strike the target in a given amount of time
    • Defensive: being fast enough to avoid an opponent's strikes

Super Trope to:

Sister Trope of Competitive Balance, which uses these and other tropes to balance out gaming.
Community Feedback Replies: 12
  • July 12, 2014
    Isn't this already covered by the Competitive Balance page? You link it from the description but don't sufficiently differentiate them IMO.
  • July 12, 2014
    It's a Sub Trope of Competitive Balance specifically for these tropes.
  • July 12, 2014
    I just like seeing a different approach.

    How would the examples be, though?
  • July 13, 2014
    ^ I don't think we really need examples. I just see this as sort of an intermediate index between Competitive Balance and the tropes themselves. Listing different characters for each archetype from a work would just be redundant to the examples in each individual trope.

    Come to think of it, I could easily organize most if not all of the Competitive Balance tropes by rewriting the description to this type of format. It may actually make more sense for this to be a Super Trope or Sister Trope of Competitive Balance.
  • July 13, 2014
    I think you can expand the trope to apply to any contest or competition, not just combat. That would cover things where points, wealth, resources, or other factors denote victory/defeat.
  • July 13, 2014
    I think Fighter Archetypes might be a better title.
  • July 13, 2014
    ^^ Which trope? This one or Competitive Balance? You probably could do that for Competitive Balance if the appropriate tropes existed. But this trope is specifically for combat both inside and outside of gaming.

    ^ Duly noted.
  • July 21, 2014
    Vote against splitting Fragile Speedster into two tropes (one low offense and one high offense), for reasons I have gone into much greater detail elsewhere. (This draft covertly endorses the launch of that draft; it includes an article that does not exist.) Pretty frustrating that this is being proposed, discussed, rejected, and then simply proposed again in another way. No.

    If there must be some sort of change to its description I would support removing (or at least softening) claims that it's supposed to be a foil to Mighty Glacier, because that's not really true. Often Fragile Speedster is "the opposite", but not always, and I don't see a good reason to force that square peg into a round hole. FS is high speed and low defense, period. Most FS have low offense but some have high offense; the trope is not about offense.
  • July 21, 2014
    "Pretty frustrating that this is being proposed, discussed, rejected, and then simply proposed again in another way. No."

    Right. Forceless Speedster should have no mention whatsoever.
  • July 21, 2014
    I don't like this because it makes the suggestion that these are the only kinds of fighters. I'm sure there are other dynamics to consider, for example, power versus control. Energize (I don't have a link) has tremendous power to the point of being able to destroy huge fleets of ships but he lacks control and risks hurting his friends in the process. High Voltage (Again, I lack a link) has tremendous control in that he can sniper a specific target within a crowd without risk of hurting innocent bystanders but his power is low. Other than this dynamic, the two characters have very similar powers and both would be considered Glass Cannon.

    Also, what about weaknesses? Often weaknesses can be considered separate from powers but there are enough examples where the weakness and power are so uniquely tied together that the weakness becomes another dynamic that should be considered here.

    This index is very poorly done.
  • July 21, 2014
    ^The problem is that there are different vectors in different games. Manna points makes no sense in a first-person shooter and reload speed makes no sense in a MOBA.
  • July 21, 2014
    ^ Seems like an argument against this proposal, not for it. (If that's what you meant to do, sorry, ignore this.)

    ^^ That is the crux of many arguments against making more changes to the Competitive Balance tropes. They are suggestions to do something different, not better, and IMO worse. Can't make them all apply to the same set of traits, there is an infinite supply of more "unit traits" to add (control, flight, range, ammo, magic power versus physical power, distinguishing between armor versus health pool, and on forever), which would mean potentially infinite articles. It's arbitrary.

    For this specifically: FS refers to speed and defense. Adding other things for it to refer to, so it fits some imaginary scheme, is not a good idea.