I started in 2011, just 2 years ago. I jumped straight into MK9 and I don't regret it at all, man.
I'm trying to get into other fighters, but it's hard because I'm so used to that MK style of play where everything is fast pace and requires quick thinking.. AE is too slow, but I'm trying to adapt. I don't like 3D fighters as much as I do 2D, the whole back dash canceling, Side stepping stuff isn't all that hype IMO.
Yes, It is funny playing competitively and being able to compete with players who are better, and yea Fighters aren't braindead like CoD and Sports games.