Sunday, January 30, 2011

Alex Valle: 50 games

I was lucky to catch Alex Valle before the Cross Roads tournament.

He was sitting down enjoying a burrito from Robertito's. I approached him and said, "So... we gonna play?" He said, "Alright, lets play."

The games went back and forth. It was 2am when we ended. The end game score was 27-23 for Valle (Ryu vs Ryu). Alex Valle played exceptionally well.

Right after the games, he gave me some advice - "Stay on the ground. You have the ground game to do so."

He also said, "I don't play anyone 50 games straight. Only players like AndyOCR, ect." I nodded and said, "Thank you. That means a lot."

The next day I watched Valle perform exceptionally well during the tournament against really strong players. He placed 2nd overall. Kudos to Alex Valle and thanks for the words of advice. They will not go to waste.


West Coast Warzone - Log Entries

I wanted to do this but since I haven't had time I will give the reader(s) a choice. If you want me to write a daily log entry for West Coast Warzone I will. I'll sit down and try my best to remember everything. It would be better for me to do this so I can remember and share the events that happened during West Coast Warzone (as vaguely as I remember it - only kidding).

Let me know. Thanks!


Chris Schmidt

I forgot to mention one of the many people who inspired me to become the player I am today. Christ Schmidt is an incredible MvC2 player. He is/was from Fresno, CA (the same area I'm from). I'm not sure if he still lives in Fresno or where he is at the moment, but he inspired me.

My buddy Jeff told me a great story about him. He told me Christ Schmidt wasn't good from just playing. He went to tournaments every weekend for a year. Whether it was for casuals or tournament he traveled to train and become stronger. I, of course, can't say for myself whether this was completely accurate to Christ Schmidt's success but I believe it. The level he can play at amazes me. I never got into MvC2 personally, but watching him play at Seasons Beatings 5 WITHOUT practice (and placing 2nd overall) was amazing and inspiring in itself. In my head I thought, "Oh my goodness... a whole year?" Jeff said, "Yep, that's what it takes to get good." Immediately I thought of doing just that.

By the end of August 2010, my buddies (Mike Chow and Javier) and I had been traveling to tournaments every weekend. We also make trips up to NorCal to train against NorCal players every Monday or so often as we could.

As of today, we have been traveling to tournaments/sessions for close to 4 months. We have a lot of work to do! :)


Friday, January 28, 2011

Next tournament: Crossroads: The Battle of Central Cali

This is a local tournament we're having in Fresno. Lot's of strong players. I have and will be training up for this event. It is very important for us to do well. It is in Fresno of course! We have to represent it well.

I'll be there trying my best (as well as the rest of the crew). Try to catch us on the stream! :)


Why I chose Ryu!

I first started playing 3rd Strike after my brother in law showed me the Daigo parry moment. I was like... What? That's crazy! I downloaded GGPO and tried to do the same but it was very hard. I figured why not try to get better at the game. I only played for fun, but I was ass! I used Ken of course and didn't know how to play that well.

Almost a couple months later Street Fighter 4 came out. I asked my brother in law, "Should we get it?" He said, "Why not looks fun." First time I played it I chose Ken and I hated it. There was no parry or anything. I didn't understand that you had to anti-air, zone, space, ect. I tried to use Ryu instead since Daigo used him and I studied his Ryu. I didn't understand what he was doing but I just copied. What attracted me to Ryu was his fireballs and anti-air abilities. He was a very well-rounded character. I wanted just that - a standard character! I only went so far from studying Daigo.

Then I tried to learn Street Fighter 2 Super Turbo. That game taught me a lot about anti-air's, spacing and fundamentals in general. Everyone did so much damage in that game that you can't let a character jump-in. I used Ryu and it was very hard to play that game for me. It taught me appreciation for SF4.


Monday, January 24, 2011

Seasons Beatings 5 in Cleveland, OH

I know this is late but I've uploaded some videos from Seasons Beatings 5. Man... I don't know how I got so far but I played really awful! I was one win away from getting out of pools. I lost to PR Rog! :(

Here's a link to my channel:

Let me know what you guys think. Enjoy!


Saturday, January 22, 2011

Response: How I got to where I am as of now.

Response to reader: bailey
Oh man... The ways I studied this game was insane. I am probably a crazy person. I tell this to my friend all the time but he's nice enough to tell me otherwise. My references will be through Vanilla then Super.

Step 1: Execution [VANILLA]

First, I learned how to use a TE Joy stick. That was really hard since I only knew how to use pad. I couldn't even do fireballs or dp's. What I did was rotate on each side of the screen (left/right). Fifty fireballs/dp's on the left, and 50 more on the right. If I messed up once I did it all over again. Did that with FADC's into ultra.

Step 2: Execution with Character (Maximizing Your Damage) [VANILLA]

I tried to learn every combo I could with Ryu. I wasn't trying to be fancy at all. I tried to learn all of his 1 frames. Anything that will maximize my damage. That would be f.HP xx cr.HP xx f.DP ect. At tournaments I would mess up a lot. Getting EX fireball or missed links and my buddies hated it. But I didn't care. It helped my muscle memory. Now I think I am fine with links for the most part.

Step 3: Match-ups (Character vs Character) [VANILLA/SUPER]

Every time I lost it was because I didn't know the match-up. I studied videos only. Whatever I had learned from videos I did it. I didn't know why it worked but it worked. Youtube is a goldmine for videos. Use it. My go-to channels for youtube were lordaborigine, lordaboriginesf4, and sf4db. For Super/AE I have many now. I study almost every day now. "It's okay to copy." - Tokido (from there you can sprout your knowledge and get a good understanding of the game).

Step 4: Fundamentals/Footsies [SUPER]

This is huge. Steps 1-3 are very minuscule to actual game play. You can execute and know every move in the game, but if you don't have fundamentals or footsies you will lose a lot. Fundamentals and footsies are unlimited. The player potential is unlimited from here on. The only thing stopping the player is if they stop trying/playing. Fundamentals include spacing, mind games, block-strings, frame-traps, baiting, ect. The list goes on. I used sonichurricane's footsies guide for that. I read it once and got a bit better. However, I had to read it 2 more times to completely understand it and be able to implement it into my gameplay. I won't go any further than this since it's too much to get into.

You will lose a lot before you start winning. Against everyone I had lost to (besides PR Rog because I forgot) I always asked them, "What did I do wrong and what did I do right?" They'll give you a straight answer. At least most of them did for me. You take that and study at home. Come back and beat them. The players are pretty much helping you get better. Take their advice. Anyone (more or less skilled) who observes your game play and critiques it... Listen to them. They are observing you. That's something YOU can't do (unless you record your footage). But still listen to them. Be open to what they say because they wouldn't come up to you and say, "Hey you know you can so and so against this and that" if they weren't trying to help. Be respectful to any player no matter what skill level. You will always be able to learn from them someway.

Make small realistic goals - I want to get top X at event Y. What I did was made goals in the Fresno scene, "I want to get better than... this person." It went on for a while from there. "Okay I want to get better than... NorCal/SoCal." What I usually do is record my goals and achievements to look back and see what I've accomplished. If I can get top x at this event then I can get top x at another event. It's a motivational factor for me to continue training/studying (but then again I'm really competitive xD).

Know yourself. If you learn from watching videos then watch videos. If you learn from reading then read to study/learn/train. If you need someone to show you personally what they mean then ask questions. Know how you learn and implement it into your study/training habits. I learn from anything if I am interested enough. :)

I spent a lot of time playing online/offline. I am very thankful for the people I play online. With great connection and skill, I learned a lot from the many players I had played online. I was very lucky to be able to find them and constantly train against them.

Don't auto-pilot. That's in the footsies guide. Don't do things just because you think it works 10 matches ago. Push yourself to sweep that low forward. Don't just jump-in because the guy is not punishing it. You learn more from 1 hour of actually playing on top of your game than 10 hours of auto-pilot footsies.

One thing Mike Ross told me was to practice vigorously even with little skilled players. Don't anti-air, don't throw fireballs, ect. You get the picture? Push your character and I stress that a lot. Some players play this game yet don't know every single little thing about their character capabilities. Even I don't.

My friend and Kenny told me the only reason I beat players is because I outplay them. I didn't know the match-up I just knew what works. This was after Hadocon when Tatsu killed me and knocked me out. I didn't know the Vega/Claw match-up at all. It wasn't close either. I went home and studied that match-up hard. Kenny, of course, helped me with it. West Coast Warzone 3 came around and Tatsu was my 3rd match. I was happy to say I was able to take him down! It wasn't easy though.

My point is. Study and train a lot. It's very important to know the game you're playing and to train as much as you feel you can. I have a weird thing about being able to play in long intervals. I must thank DotA for that (1 hour average games @_@). That was back then though. :)

Knowledge of the game is so little for me. I don't know a lot about the game and I'm very curious. That is why I want to travel and compete against the Japanese. But I can't do that if I can't even beat the players in California and so forth. That doesn't mean the players in the U.S. are weaker. It just means I want to know more about every single character. I haven't been able to do that since the character variety in the U.S. is very limited.

Hope this helps and isn't too much. Now I must sleep! Thank you for your question


Thursday, January 20, 2011

West Coast Warzone 3 - Response :)

Reader - eric:

keno proved himself to be am excellent rog in the team tournament and singes but i'd like to hear your opinion on the match. what gave you a hard time and what limitations does ryu have when it comes to boxer/what other matchups do you feel ryu is at a large disadvantage. or do you just think you could have played that match better? 

i hope you don't mind the questioning but i want to be more than the typical reader who post messages like "awesome shit @ wcw... you rule".

also who impressed you at wcw? i'd like to get the opinion of a competitor and not just of those in a stream. was there anyone whose matchup knowledge or just experience inspired you (at wcw or from a tournament before you started competing.) /picking miky's brain

My response:
Keno was really strong. Air (I'll address him as Kenny) was telling me before the match that he was really strong. As strong as a Japanese Balrog player. I was more excited in playing him than before after hearing that. I had always wanted to play against Keno after watching him fight John Choi at Evo 2010. His spacing was great in the corner, his decision making was strong, and he respected me. When I was fighting Keno, I was determined to test my footsies against his Balrog. I kept up! At least I thought I did. I wanted to challenge his footsies and his fundamentals. It was really nice! I don't feel Ryu has major disadvantages. He is a solid character that has many tools to fight against the whole cast.

Against Balrog it depends on how you play it. Both characters are solid and if put in both equally skilled players I believe its a 5:5 match-up. The level of knowledge and skill against the other player is what determines how skewed this match-up is.

Keno impressed me the most at WCW. I also am inspired by PR Rog, John Choi, Mike Ross, and Jeff Schaeffer.

PR Rog - He inspired me to double tap. If someone coming from PR gets that good and executes that well then I can too!

John Choi - He really helped me realize fundamentals are very important. For someone who doesn't play as often as others he can kill a player who has weak fundamentals and spacing.

Mike Ross - He was the first player outside of Fresno that played my terrible Ryu back in Vanilla. I remember telling him, "I want to fight you and Gootecks someday in a tournament." He said, "You will someday. :)"

Jeff Schaeffer - If you ever get to watch his youtube videos, that guy is awesome. He inspired me to compete no matter who I'm up against. I did it before watching his videos, but it's nice to know that I was on the right track ahead of time.


Wednesday, January 19, 2011

West Coast Warzone 3

Originally by

1st. EG. Ricky Ortiz [Rufus]
2nd. 801 Strider [Abel]
3rd. BLG Juicebox [Abel]

4th. BLG Filipino Champ [Dhalsim]
5th. EG. Marn [Dudley/C.Viper]
5th. Keno [Boxer]
7th. Ed Ma [Juri/Akuma]
7th. XSK Samurai [Ryu] <---- Yosssssssshhhhh!
9th. Alex Valle [Ryu]
9th. Air Canada [Ryu]
9th. Mike Ross [Honda/Blanka]
9th. Latif [C.Viper]

Here is my Battle Log for Top 16!

Keno [Boxer] d. XSK Samurai [Ryu] – 2-0
XSK Samurai [Ryu] d. Mike Ross [Blanka/Honda] – 2-1
XSK Samurai [Ryu] d. Combofiend [Guy/Abel] – 2-1

We did it! Fresno has made it past not only Top 16, but also Top 8!

Thank you to everyone who helped me get this far. You know who you are!


P.S. I will post a blog on the event soon. I am just busy since school started. But stay tuned!