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These days I've been trying to play SSF4:AE and SFxT a bit more seriously (I'm a pure beginner in versus fighting games). There are a bunch of things I don't understand at all, but while watching a few replays, I heard commentators talking about the "tier list" and sometimes "god tiers" a lot. I've also found a few web comics where these two terms regularly appear. What is it exactly, and how is it established/built up ? Does it exist for other versus fighting games than Street Fighters ?

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The Tier List is a classification system that describes the relative success rates of characters in most fighting games, when played by computer or high-level players competitively.

It should be noted that tiers only effect two people facing each other of equal skill. Tier lists tend to change over time when new strategies and such are found for fighters, so there is truly no "final" version of a tier list. There have been many massive debates regarding the legitimacy of tiers, and if they truly even exist in Street Fighter.

source (many interesting things here)

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Note it's not sufficient to simply play as top tier characters; you still need to know why they're top tier. The character may simply be brokenly good in all/most ways, or they may have very specific but powerful options at their disposal. Unless a game is very poorly balanced "god tier" usually still requires plenty of skill to play before it's clearly superior to other tiers –  Prinny Brocka Jan 14 '13 at 14:58
    
Thanks, it's very interesting. Do you know where I could find tier lists for each SF ? It doesn't seem to be on the wiki mentionned above. –  Anto Jan 14 '13 at 17:10
    
eventhubs.com/guides/2008/oct/17/… for SF4. It's updated, the link just hasn't changed. –  Decency Jan 14 '13 at 17:49
    
Great, thanks ! –  Anto Jan 15 '13 at 10:30
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