|Created by||Reverge Labs
Lab Zero Games
|Years on Air||2012|
Airdate: April 10, 2012
Platforms: Arcade, Microsoft Windows, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, PlayStation Vita, Xbox 360, Linux, OS X
Skullgirls takes place in the fictional Canopy Kingdom, a country reminiscent of 1940s postwar America. In a corrupt and war-torn world, several individuals and organizations seek to obtain an artifact known as the Skull Heart. Once every seven years, the Skull Heart grants one woman's wish. However, if a woman with an impure soul attempts to use the Heart, her wish will be corrupted and she will be transformed into a monster known as the Skullgirl. Hundreds have sought after the Skull Heart, yet none of its wielders have been deemed worthy and spared of its curse.
Seven years following the Grand War, a battle fought between three nations, the newest Skullgirl, Marie, has emerged and begun to terrorize the Canopy Kingdom. The game follows several fighters and their journeys to confront Marie and claim the Skull Heart. Each character has their own motive for seeking the Heart, whether to destroy the artifact or use its power for their own interests.
The engine and playstyle for Skullgirls were intentionally modeled after Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes, incorporating several similar game mechanics such as tag team-based combat, character assists, snapbacks, and delayed hyper combos. The game can be played using different ratios of characters, with each player able to select up to three fighters on their team. The teams are then balanced based on the number of team members. A single character possesses more health and deals more damage, while larger teams gain the ability to perform character assists and recover health when tagged out. Players can also customize their character assist attacks.
The game includes a story mode, arcade mode, versus mode, training room, tutorial mode, and online play using the GGPO networking library. Skullgirls includes various unique features to address system and balance problems, such as infinite combo detection. When the game detects a looping combo through monitoring the players' attacks, the other player can break free of the infinite by hitting any button. In addition, Skullgirls offers protection against "unblockable attacks", which occur when a player, for example, uses a low-hitting move and a high-hitting assist attack at the same time, making it nearly impossible for the opponent to block. The game attempts to remedy the issue by offering a brief period of unblockable protection after successfully blocking any attack.
At release, Skullgirls Encore saw numerous gameplay adjustments and additions, including character balance tweaks, faster gameplay, an online training mode, and a stun meter designed to limit lengthy combos without compromising creativity. A new local game mode called "Typing of the Skullgirls", a mode inspired by games like The Typing of the Dead, was also added. When enabled, teams automatically generate meter and all attacks deal negligible damage. Super moves give typing prompts to the player, awarding damage for typing accuracy.
In addition to fully voiced story modes and cross-platform play across the entire PlayStation family, Skullgirls 2nd Encore introduced challenges, where players fight against opponents under unique battle conditions; trials, which test players' skills by having them perform combos; and survival mode, which pits players against endless waves of enemies.