Throughout the history of fighting games, many terms have been created and/or used to describe what happens with the characters on the screen, such as crossup, counter-hit, combo, etc. Well, it got me thinking. In KI (and more than likely, other games as well) there are 2 terms that are used for grappling mechanics - throws and grabs (specifically, command grabs).
As a simple mechanic, every character has 1-3 throws which usually consists of a back throw, a forward throw, and sometimes, an anti-air throw (which can sometimes be done in the air or from the ground, depending on the game and/or character being played).
However, not every character has a command grab which is, aesthetically speaking, very similar to the “normal” throws, because they, like normal throws, involve some form of grappling, but the inputs are generally different, as are the actual game mechanics to them (for example, many command grabs beat normal throws).
So, here’s my question, since this is meant to be a discussion regarding terms, rather than mechanics: Why use the term, throw, to describe the former, and use the term, grab, to describe the latter? If they’re so similar, why not just use 1 term over the other, such as normal throws and command throws or normal grabs and command grabs? Or perhaps a different term altogether, such as using the word, grapple: normal grapple and command grapple? Speaking of which, and even more interestingly, a lot of characters who are really good at throws and grabs, or who have many of them in their moves list, are often referred to as grapplers or grappling characters. Why is that? Why muddy the waters with similar, but different terms, instead of 1 single, unifying term as a whole? Personally if you ask me, that only serves to complicate matters, especially when it comes to learning various aspects of the game, particularly with newer players who are trying to enter the fold (and finding it rather hard to do so).
Even worse, it doesn’t just end with throws and grabs and grappling either. There are other instances of this too, such as crossups and crossovers, which are basically the same thing and are generally used interchangeably. Why have more than 1 for what’s essentially the same thing?
It’s likely impossible, just because of the way the fighting game language/lingo has evolved over the years, but I personally would like to see a complete unification of terms for this genre to help facilitate newcomers and become more user-friendly in the process. While I imagine many old-school players might not like this idea, if implemented (it does kind of bring about a 1984 language-controlling and limiting aspect into it), I don’t think it would be altogether too hard for them to adapt, since it’s something they’ve already been doing over the years (and I believe that it would be easier for them than it is now for any newcomers into the genre).
This leads quite simply into my next question: Is there a definitive, all-encompassing, and universally-accepted guide across (most, if not all) fightings games anywhere for fighting game terms (in other words, a fighting game dictionary, of sorts)? I know there’s a lot of terms explained in @Infilament’s guide over at ki.infil.net, but I would hardly call it definitive, since it’s largely geared towards Killer Instinct, and makes numerous references to Street Fighter - many other fighting game fans probably don’t even know of its existence as a result of that alone. If there isn’t 1, I think it would be really cool to have 1. Is anyone up to the task of creating 1? Or perhaps has someone come relatively close to making 1, and that I just don’t already know about its existence?
What’s your take on throws vs. grabs, term-wise, and what do you think of fighting game terms, in general? Do you think terms should be unified and/oror an all-encompassing dictionary for the genre created? I’d like your input on this (and please respect other poster’s viewpoints and keep this discussion friendly, and as a friendly warning and reminder - if you don’t, your posts will be promptly reported).
@moderators, I wasn’t sure whether this topic would be more appropriate in the general discussion section or the off-topic section, but decided on the former because I felt it would get more exposure there as a wonderful, and enlightening, discussion. If you would prefer, you’re welcome to move it to the off-topic sub-forum; if you do, however, please remove everything below the line above (and can do the same after making the decision if you decide to leave it in the general discussion as well - this section of my post is only meant to be temporary until you make that decision).