She blinded me with science! Also, a radiation beam to the face. Actually, it was probably mostly the beam. Science Kombat seeks to answer the age old question, “who would win a fight…”? Forget trifling match ups such as Godzilla vs. Ronald McDonald, Science Kombat seeks to answer the hard questions by pitting names such as Einstein, Turing and Curie against each other in bloody special-move-laden duels to the death.
Normally, scientific battles comprise a rigorous peer-review system, critical analysis and discussion of limitations. Control variables, sample sizes and P-Values are thrown around in the arena of debate. This focus on academic procedure may have left a gap in the discovery process. This New Retro Games study investigated new approaches demonstrated in Science Kombat, which found that traditional argumentative tools are effectively replaced with arguably less time consuming literal attacks, from radium blasts to electric death rays.
Each of the famous scientists in Science Kombat come with their own set of special moves, all carefully reflecting the scientist’s background and doing a bang up job of it, really. From Curie’s radium fuelled moves and Tesla’s lightning attacks, to Hawking’s black holes and Pythagoras’ triangles, everything adheres to an internal consistency. Backgrounds, likewise, are lovingly detailed and reflect the character in question’s er, background, whether its the Galapagos Islands when fighting Darwin or a space station high above the Earth with engaging Hawking.
Controls are far simpler than a serious fighting game, however, with just two attack buttons (W and E), and each fighter generally having two main moves, utilising relatively simple combinations such as Down, Back + W or E. However, in some cases the attack varies based on whether you use W or E to execute said attack. This arguably allows for some emergent permutations, increasing the complexity of engagements.
Our hypothesis was that triangles are the one true shape, as such we played through the game as famous ancient mathematician and scholar, Pythagoras. Data analysis revealed that Pythagoras had two main forms of attack: a jumping right angle triangle attack, and a slow but powerful energy blast. The jumping attack was fast and effective, but the slow attack, while difficult to aim, had the boon of making ol’ Pythagoras invincible during its animation frames. This allowed us to ignore many otherwise deadly special attacks.
We tested the hypothesis by engaging with and defeating various scientific figures, utilising the perfect geometry of a triangle to defeat any far-fetched theories they proposed to us.
Figure 1: Gravity goes straight down in Newton’s view, but the superior geometry of the triangle put him in his place
The invincible move allowed Pyhtagoras to even withstand Tesla’s electric death ray to the face without breaking a sweat. However, in the end, Pythagoras was unable to overcome perhaps his greatest foe: himself.
In terms of quality fighting games, Science Kombat isn’t going to give established treatise on violence-based debating such as Street Fighter et al (1991) a run for its money, nor even lesser accepted study Primal Rage (1994) for that matter, but I’ll be an unevolved simian’s uncle if Science Kombat is not just gosh darn fun.
Science Kombat | Play Online