What is Button Mashing? [Gaming Definition, Meaning]

When someone picks up a gaming controller, they can have one of several responses. For some veteran gamers, they will know the controller like it is a literal extension of themselves and never have to look down to see what they are about to press. Then there are more casual gamers who see the controller as a remote controller which means they might understand the layout and design but at times forget where some buttons are and need to check as they play. Ultimately though, gamers usually try to familiarize themselves with gaming controllers so when they play a game they can do their best or at least look like they are doing their best. However, there is one type of gamer out there that masks their inabilities to play a game by using one of the other methods we haven’t mentioned yet and it just so happens to be the crux of our article today here at Honey’s Anime.

That’s right everyone, today we’re looking at those who rely on the ancient art of button mashing in games. Now maybe you’ve heard of this theme but aren’t fully aware what it actually means. Well folks that’s why we decided to write this definition article called What is Button Mashing. Our goal is to show you what the term means by providing various gaming examples and explaining it so anyone new or old to gaming will realize what we mean. Anyways, let us stop talking about the goal of this article and actually dive right into.

Slam the controller keys!

Button mashing in an exact explanation means literally what it sounds like. Players that rely on button mashing will hit their controller keys and buttons with no style and or thought. In most games this leads to fruitless results—you won’t win a FPS game or platformer by slamming controller buttons—but in one specific genre, button mashing actually works wonders. That specific genre we talk about here is fighting games. In particular there are two fighting games we wish to talk about—one being Street Fighter V and the other Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite—that will better explain why button mashing is used by many players and how it benefits to rely on this style of play.

1. Street Fighter V

  • System/Platform: PS4, PC
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Developer: Capcom, Dimps
  • Release Date: Feb 16, 2016

A new tournament has begun once more in Street Fighter V but this time, the stakes might be at their highest. Ryu still is training to keep his inner demons at bay and M. Bison is still on a path of world domination via his powerful organization Shadaloo. Things change though when Charlie Nash who was thought to be dead is resurrected and sets his sights for M. Bison. What a perfect time to have yet another world tournament but this time things might be different. Who will win this year and will winning mean change is coming?

Street Fighter V is the prime example of a fighting game where button mashing will definitely help you. While most Street Fighter veterans won’t need to rely on aimlessly hitting the square, triangle, circle and cross buttons, those new to the Street Fighter V will have a better time just hitting them all. Besides working extremely well in the story mode—which we have tried in the past—even some online matches can be won relying on button mashing tactics. However, just remember those who are aware of button mashers—which is what people who use button mashing tactics are called—typically have a means of fighting back with their own use of skills. Ironically though, even veterans will use button mashing if they run out of options and are desperate. Goes to show everyone that button mashing is something that even pros might use here and there, sneakily of course.

Street Fighter V- E3 2015 Trailer | PS4 (Official Trailer)

2. Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite

  • System/Platform: PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Publisher: Capcom
  • Developer: Capcom
  • Release Date: Sept 19, 2017

War is approaching and the form it takes is a being known as Ultron Sigma. Bent on changing the landscape of the various worlds, Ultron Sigma has begun to unleash a virus that will change anyone infected into a servant unable to defy their rule. However, Iron Man, Captain America, Ryu, Strider Hiryu and several other heroes from different dimensions/worlds have teamed up to defeat this new threat. With their skills, they must collect the six infinity stones and use their powers to defeat Ultron Sigma. With time against them, the heroes must hurry or else no place will be safe from the evil fused enemy.

Another fighting game that button mashing works adequately well in would be the newest Marvel vs. Capcom game known as Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite. Here, players have the means of selecting teams of two and fighting against either the AI or other human players. In the story mode of Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite, button mashing works extremely well as most enemies don’t have too much to counter it. The final fight might be a bit tough for button mashers—heck even for those who don’t rely on it—but it still will get the job done. Even when us here at Honey’s Anime went online we lost to a slew of button mashers as they sometimes throw out so many combos and moves that proper timing is neigh impossible. Button mashing might be considered annoying by most who take Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite seriously but even they won’t argue it works at times. Though we’re sure many wish button mashing wouldn’t work as much as it does.

Marvel vs. Capcom: Infinite- Full Story Trailer (Official Trailer)

Don’t expect it to always work though

So, at this point in the article many of you might be thinking button mashing will get you far. That however can’t be any further from the truth unfortunately. Button mashing doesn’t always work even in the games we mentioned above and can be countered by those who know the ways of doing it. Take, for example, Tekken 7 which will be our final game we mention in our What is Button Mashing article. Tekken 7 has means of countering button mashers—as do the other games as well to some degree—which makes button mashing not always work the way you think it should. Need some more proof of that? Well, let us talk about it via our Tekken 7 example.

3. Tekken 7

  • System/Platform: Arcade, PC, PS4, Xbox One
  • Publisher: Bandai Namco Entertainment
  • Developer: Bandai Namco Entertainment
  • Release Date: Mar 18, 2015

Even though years have passed the Mishima Zaibatsu and G Corporation have continued their internal war. However, as time passes these two super powered organizations have let their war escalate so much that even those who aren’t privy to any war going on are being affected. One reporter lost his entire family to this seemingly endless war and has begun to document his findings to let the world see the hidden realities. Meanwhile, another King of Iron First tournament is under way and the various fighters begin preparing. Who will be this year’s victor of the King of Iron Fist and can the reporter find a means of avenging his family? Find out in Tekken 7!

In games like Tekken 7, button mashing works at times but also can be countered. There are numerous ways to indeed destroy a button masher’s only means of winning. For example, there are moves that allow skilled players to actually counter button mashing and provide them with the means of using their own slew of combos. Equally, there are numerous characters that button mashing leaves them more open to attacks because they need reliance on knowing combos such as the fighters like Jin and Yoshimitsu. Though that doesn’t mean button mashing won’t work in Tekken 7 either as some fighters like Eddy Gordo or Christie Monteiro both have move sets that allow button mashing to truly thrive. It really just goes to show you that no fighting game is perfect in defending those who button mash but in Tekken 7 most players won’t find themselves winning a lot if they rely too much on this style of play.

TEKKEN 7-Extended Trailer (E3 2016) (Official Trailer)

Final Thoughts

At the end of the day, button mashing can be seen by some as a really weak way of playing any video game. However, we here at Honey’s Anime will simple say this. If you enjoy playing games by going wild on your controller then what’s the big deal? You might get some flak from those who take games a tad too seriously but video games are supposed to be entertaining first and foremost which means if button mashing works for you than just go wild. That thought however is how we feel here at Honey’s Anime and we know not everyone may agree with it. Comment down below what you think about button mashing and or those that rely on it but please keep it kind and civil as we don’t want anyone to get upset and or triggered. As always if you loved this type of article then we have good news for you as our site here at Honey’s Anime has tons more like it and we hope you’ll read those as well.

Tekken-7-game-wallpaper-700x394 What is Button Mashing? [Gaming Definition, Meaning]


Author: Aaron

Hey everyone I’m Aaron Curbelo or Blade as I’m called by my YouTube Subscribers. I’ve been an anime/manga fan since I was a young kid. In terms of anime I have watched nearly a thousand shows and have read hundreds of manga series. I love writing and honestly was so happy to join Honey’s Anime to get a shot to write articles for such a wonderful site. I’m a firm believer in respect in the anime community being the most important embodiment we should all have. We all love anime and we have varying opinions of series but we should respect one another for those differences! Life is too precious to spend it making needless arguments in a community that should be the shining example of loving an amazing medium. I hope as a writer for Honey’s Anime I can bring you folks some amazing articles to read and enjoy!

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