August 5, 2020

Visualizing fighting game mechanics

This project aimed to create a visual aid that helped players learn how to think about the game, not just how to play it. By breaking down the game mechanics into smaller components, I designed cards that acted as a small multiple, allowing players to make comparisons between fighting moves to better understand them. I engaged with the Tekken subreddit community for feedback. This was the first time in my process where I designed something so openly and with the public.


Overview: Tekken is a Japanese fighting game that has been around since the late 80’s. It continues to boast a strong community of players and remains competitive with other leading titles on the market. If you’ve never heard of Tekken before, the video below will give you an idea of what it’s like:

Problem being solved: Many players learning the game have a hard time understanding how to build tactics and develop a gameplan. Many existing guides online teach players the technical aspects of the game, but fail to provide enough context of how certain moves work in gameplay. Fighting moves are usually taught in isolation and not relative to each other. This project aims to help players compare different moves to better understand them.

Target audience: Beginners who have some familiarity of Tekken and have already chosen a character to specialize in.

Key objective: To design a physical visual aid for players to use while learning Tekken. Players are equipped to learn one character and develop a better understanding on how to think about fighting games.

Featured in: This project was presented at Datafest Tbilisi 2020. Watch it here.

See the project

Josie 1,2,2 card

Tekken legend

Josie Rizal’s Switch Stance SWS


The process has been documented in a detailed post:

See the process

Here’s a short snippet of what it was like: