Fighting games often have a ton of characters, and in order to make the games fun and appealing to fans, those characters need to come with some balance. Having one character who's 10 times stronger or faster than the rest doesn't make for a great game — even if you're the one who picks that character, each and every time. Sure, it'd be fun for a bit, but after a while the novelty of being practically invincible wears a little thin. That's why devs are constantly trying to work out a proper balance between characters to prevent that from happening.
While balancing the playing field is certainly the goal, it isn't often the reality. Sooner or later, gamers discover that one of the characters is, in fact, OP when compared to the rest, and this can lead to difficult gameplay, which is especially true when you consistently get beaten by your buddy just because they got to the character first. Every popular fighting game tends to have at least one of these terribly overpowered characters — whether it's their abilities, their style, or some gameplay glitch that was previously undiscovered — and this list identifies the most ridiculously powerful and strongest fighting game characters of the bunch.
Whether they were so insanely overpowered they were actually banned or are so strong gamers keep petitioning to ban them, check out some of the most popular fighting characters who are ridiculously and unfairly overpowered.
Meta Knight - 'Super Smash Bros. Brawl'Photo: Nintendo
You know a character is too OP for a video game if he's banned from use in tournaments, and that's exactly what happened with Meta Knight. The foil of Kirby was thrown into the game by developer Masahiro Sakurai, as he has a penchant for putting in characters he created from other series.
Why They're So OP: Meta Knight's attack priority is the highest in the game, which means, if he clashes with another player in combat, his attack will hit his opponent while taking no damage. He's also insanely fast, and his range is great, so he's a first-strike opponent who is almost impossible to defeat.154Way too powerful?
Gill - 'Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact'Photo: Capcom
Gill was introduced as the final boss players had to defeat in Street Fighter III: New Generation, having been absent in previous titles in the franchise. He's half red and half blue, which represents his ability to control fire and ice. Eventually, he was ported into a playable character in Street Fighter III: 2nd Impact, and he was way too powerful and unbalanced at the time.
Why They're So OP: The biggest reason he's so overpowered has to be his "Resurrection" ability, and it's pretty much what you think it is. If Gill is defeated but has a full Super Combo meter, he comes back to life! His life bar will slowly fill from that point, and while this gives his opponent a chance to stop the bar from filling up completely, he's coming back regardless, and the fight won't be over despite beating him. Playing a character that possesses the ability to come back to life? Yeah, that's pretty OP.111Way too powerful?
Goku (GT) - 'Dragon Ball FighterZ'Photo: Bandai Namco
Goku (GT) was introduced as a downloadable fighter in Dragon Ball FighterZ's second DLC pass that was released in May 2019. Basically the kid version of Goku, he features many of the same moves (including the Kamehameha) but is much smaller, faster, and basically a whole lot harder to hit.
Why They're So OP: Ever since Goku (GT)'s inclusion in FighterZ, gamers have been adamant that he be banned from tournament play. Some players have even gone so far as to state how including him in the roster essentially ruins the entire game. While Bandai Namco slightly nerfed the character for Season 3, he's still ridiculously overpowered.112Way too powerful?
Ivan Ooze - 'Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Fighting Edition'Photo: Bandai
When Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Fighting Edition came out, players got a chance to play out their favorite television show in a fighting game, but the game didn't feature much in the way of balance. The final boss came in the form of Ivan Ooze, and once a player beat him on 'Hard' difficulty, he was unlocked to be a playable character in versus mode.
Why They're So OP: What happens when you take the game's final boss and make him a playable character, but forget to tone him down? You end up with a character who's arguably the most broken in terms of being OP in any fighting game ever. He can jump in the air and attack (most characters can't), you can make him fly wherever you want to go, and this makes him immune to most attacks. He's so OP in terms of the other characters, he's not even fun to play (with or against).102Way too powerful?