Niche Spotlight – EF-12: Fighting Game Maker

This is Niche Spotlight. In this column, we regularly introduce new games to our fans, so please leave feedback and let us know if there’s a game you want us to cover!

Playism and independent Japanese developer Quad Arrow put out an interesting, 3D, DIY-fighting game engine called EF-12: Fighting Game Maker.

While the game was originally released in Japan for free with limited features, Playism has released a more premium edition, complete with the EF-12 core, tutorial, and more. Featured above, you can view an overview trailer for the DIY fighter.


Developed by Quad Arrow and veteran Japanese developer Masahiro Onoguchi (Tekken, Fighers Destiny), players can build their own fighters within Maya or Soft Image and simply import them into the game engine.

You can also trade them via a zip file, which only requires throwing said files into the proper game install folders. It’s also worth mentioning Quad Arrow and Playism are explicitly clear that players can use this for commercial use, i.e. building your own commercial fighting game.


Here are the game’s key features:

  • The Modding Veteran:
    Those seasoned in model creation and animation can simply create assets in what ever program they’re most comfortable with, easily check the requirements within the manual interface, and import their creations directly into the game wit minimal fuss!
  • The Novice Modder:
    For those still learning, EF-12 comes with a full suite of tutorials that can teach players how to create their own content for the game, no matter their skill level. Get ready, because school is in session!
  • The Player:
    No interest in creating your own characters or stages, but still want to see what EF-12 has to offer? Importing other people’s creations is as easy as placing the files in the right folder, and starting EF-12. No complicated installation or;programming knowledge is required to get EF-12 content running!
    Want to make the ultimate fighting machine? Creating AI in EF-12 is as easy as editing a spreadsheet. In fact, it is exactly like editing a spreadsheet. Edit AI spreadsheets on the fly, save the file, and immediately see your results in-game.
    Want to see if your character is ready for primetime without loading up EF-12? Use the included Fool Viewer to see exactly how your character will appear in-game, complete with animation and applied graphical effects.

Finally, if you just want to give the engine a try, there’s also a free demo available over on Playism’s website, as well as its Steam page.

If you’re a developer and want your game showcased on Niche Spotlight, please contact us!

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Owner and Publisher at Niche Gamer and Nicchiban. Outlaw fighting for a better game industry. Pronouns: Patriarch, Guido, Olive, Catholic

  1. Annie T. Mood
    Annie T. Mood
    November 21, 2016 at 10:04 pm

    Something like a 3D M.U.G.E.N. then?

  2. Brandon Orselli
    Brandon Orselli
    November 21, 2016 at 10:06 pm

    Pretty much, from what I can tell.

  3. Master Bating
    Master Bating
    November 21, 2016 at 10:11 pm

    So, its a 3D Mugen?

  4. Tubsiwub
    November 21, 2016 at 10:15 pm

    Neat, but… it’ll never make anything super unique.

  5. CRES
    November 22, 2016 at 12:08 am

    I don’t know about that. Watching the trailer it gives me the sense that it gives you all the tools you need. The only difference is going to be how much effort you put into your product. The only limitations I can see is going to be how easy it will be to edit the fighting engine itself. Like can you limit it to 2D or eliminate the Super meter, or add unique meters for particular characters.

    PS: I saw them stealing Heart Aino’s picture. Thought they could get away with it?

  6. Louis
    November 22, 2016 at 12:44 am

    Okay, but if I can’t add Jojo characters complete with Stand powers, then this game can fuck right off.

  7. True Goddess Reincarnation
    True Goddess Reincarnation
    November 22, 2016 at 1:48 am

    Eh, I have bad experiences with MUGEN. No thank you

  8. Ice apollo
    Ice apollo
    November 22, 2016 at 3:38 am

    hopefully some cool stuff comes out of this

  9. GamesGoodMeGood
    November 22, 2016 at 6:09 am

    * Creates new folder and names it “Queen’s Blade Fighter: Bikini Armor & Boob Plate Edition” *

    I’m drooling already

  10. thieftheodore
    November 23, 2016 at 3:40 am

    IIRC they got examu permission to use aino