UE4 Powered Fighting Game Rising Thunder Is Now In Open Alpha

You might have heard of Rising Thunder, the Free-to-Play fighting game made with Unreal Engine 4 by Radiant Entertainment. The title received a lot of attention for at least a couple reasons: it's been designed mainly for PC (although the devs haven't ruled out a console port down the road) and keyboard controls, while pretty much every other fighting game is console & controller bound first and foremost.

Moreover, there are some fairly recognized faces behind Radiant Entertainment, starting with Seth Killian, who worked at Capcom during the development of Street Fighter IV. There are also the Cannon brothers, who keep themselves quite busy - Tom founded the EVO Championship Tournament and Tony developed the GGPO middleware for online play, but you could also know them because they're working on Stonehearth as well.

The core philosophy of Rising Thunder is to make fighting games slightly more accessible because, according to Killian, they are "hard in a kind of a dumb way".

[Fighting games] are hard, and that’s not a bad thing—that’s a good thing—but they’re hard in kind of a dumb way. The core elements of fighting games, like the moves that, when we’re designing games, we build everything around, like fireball, uppercut … that’s not the fancy shit. That’s the ground floor of competitiveness. When we’re building these games, we assume that players are all doing fireballs, uppercuts. There’s not some accommodation made on the design side to be like, ‘Oh, players will only succeed in doing this 20 percent of the time, or 50 percent.’

You just assume people can do this, [but] put any fighting game kiosk out on a showfloor somewhere and watch people absolutely fail, all day, every day, to actually do the moves we’ve built the whole game around. So the core of the game, the basic elements of the game, are hidden behind an execution wall, and not like a little execution wall, either. To do it, not in the sense that ‘I have technically performed this move,’ but to do it without thinking about it, which is the way you need to be able to do it to really play—that’s like, for some people, a month, because they’re really talented. For most people, more like six months—between three and six months. And in some cases a year—or never—of playing them a lot, before you have the moves.

It’s a completely core fighter, like everything else, it’s just that the special moves don’t involve any weird motions. That’s it. That’s really the only difference. That’s kind of the bet of this whole game.

The good news is that you can now try out Rising Thunder for yourself, simply by registering on the official website and then downloading the small client. Let us know what you think of it after you played some rounds!

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