The background stages in fighting games are absurd. They've always been absurd and long may the tradition continue. There's something so beautiful about seeing a bunch of awkward NPCs stand about mindlessly cheering from the sidelines as two fighters pummel one another into submission. I also like how they can be used to unleash brutal finishing moves:
But while the location above is a completely fictional hellhole, a lot of developers have actually sought inspiration for fighting game backdrops from real locations! Crayfis was kind enough to amass a collection of some of these on the Shoryuken forums—do you recognize some of these classic locales?
Fighting Game Backdrops You Can Actually Visit!
Knight of Fighters '98
With plenty of gaming studios nearby, Esaka Station in Suita, Osaka, Japan has been featured a fair few times in video games, apparently. But here it is in KOF from 1998!
The second one from this game involves La Alhambra de Granada in Spain, and man does it look beautiful!
King of Fighters 2001
You're looking at the Rialto Bridge in Venice, Italy. You can find it in the background of the game's Italy Stage.
King of Fighters 2002
The background of the Korea Stage in King of Fighters 2002 features the 63 Building in Seoul, South Korea.
Fatal Fury 2
In the Big Bear Stage in Fatal Fury 2 there's a big old rock by the name of Ayers Rock in the background. You can find it in Australia. Get that truck out of the way!
Fatal Fury Special
This is a place I desperately need to visit! This here is the background for the Cheng Sinzan Stage, and it's based on the Jumbo Floating Restaurant in Hong Kong. This is a place that was made to be put in a video game.
The other real-world location in the game can be found in Fatal Fury Special's Kim Kaphwan Stage and depicts the Namdaemun Gate in Seoul, South Korea.
Street Fighter Alpha
You guessed it, this here is the Roman Colosseum in Italy. It can be found in the background of the Rose Stage in Street Fighter Alpha.
This fighting classic also features Victorian Harbor in Hong Kong in the background of its Gen Stage. Impressive rendering!
Street Fighter 2
The greatest fighting game ever made. You may remember the completely bizarre Fei Long Stage in this game, but it's even more bizarre to think that this place exists! You'll find these creatures in the Tiger Balm Gardens of Hong Kong.
Additionally, you can find the Sagat Stage in various instalments of the Street Fighter franchise. The real life version can be found at the Wat Phra Si Sanphet Temple in Thailand.
Know any other real-life locations in fighting games?
A fan of Street Fighter? Then check out this awesome clip promoting the awesomeness of Street Fighter V!