Learning combos sucks. It’s memorization for stuff that in other genres the game would basically try to automate for you. And it’s 90% of getting into fighting games. Anyone can learn what a cross-up is and when to guard high vs guard low, but learning combos is where only the die-hards actually get through. It’s why people like when fighters are friendly to button-mashing, or when there’s stuff like Smash Bros where combos are possible but more physics-driven and probably more intuitive for a casual player. I’m sure someone will hate me for just mentioning Smash Bros at all, but that series clearly has a huge casual appeal and is much more accessible than the traditional 2D or 3D fighter genre is.
And these combos usually require obscenely fast reflexes and dexterity. I gave up on Injustice 2 because, while I got how the game worked and understood how to do individual moves, combos required me to do inputs faster than I can physically do them to actually work. There’s a point where you can’t improve at a game anymore, just because of your own physical limitations, and I hit that point in lots of fighting games I’ve tried. They expect me to execute every move with the speed of a pro when I just want to relax and punch my friends without the both of us feeling like we’re just mashing buttons.
Also there’s no way for people to actually practice playing the game against other players that isn’t really high-pressure, unless they have a local fighting game scene. And if they do, they have to hope that the local scene cares about whatever game they’re interested in. If I wanted to get into Soul Calibur 2 at this point there’s nobody to play with even within local scenes, and online play for any game still hasn’t gotten past the point of feeling distinctly different from actually playing in person.
There’s problems within fighting games themselves, and there’s problems within the ‘world’ of fighting games. Neither are easily solved without causing other issues.