Strat Talk Round-Up #3

Coincidentally bbbenson has recently traded hand slaps for mashing DPs.

It’s been a very long time since my last strat round-up post, but following EVO 2011 a couple of nice items have popped up that I found interesting.

There’s something for both SSF4:AE and MvC3 players in this edition of Strat Talk Round-up. Click through to find an article on the subject of “mashing”, as well as Viscant’s analysis of his grand final win in MvC3 at EVO 2011.

As a bonus there’s also a link to Seth Killian’s classic Domination 101 series of articles on SRK, written before he became the community manager for Capcom USA.

My Attempt at Domination 101: Thoughts on “Randomness”, Mashing, and High Level Play

This article, posted on SRK by Poe22222, is a nice compliment to Thelo’s prediction vs. reaction article from last year. Here Poe22222 is talking about how the natural evolution of a player, from beginner through to advanced, involves some rather counter-intuitive stages. Players begin with a lack of caution, then invest in too much caution, before finally understanding that risk has its place, provided it is well balanced against the rewards being sought.

One of my favourite parts of this article is the way some intermediate players respond to losing:

“…while I like this player as a person and think he’s a strong opponent, he has a very predictable habit of criticizing my play after I beat him.” – Poe22222

This is probably familiar to a lot of people. I think of this as the modern-day equivalent of people complaining about throws when they lose. If you genuinely think your opponent is “doing it wrong” then the solution is to beat them. You’re never going to be arguing from a position of dignity if you tell someone to change their style while they’re beating you repeatedly.

Viscant analyzes his Grand Finals MvC3 match and is interviewed

Here’s something a bit different. In my opinion Viscant is one of the best fighting game analysts of all time. This isn’t because he’s the best player around – Viscant has struggled to succeed since his early victories in MvC1. What makes Viscant’s analysis so interesting to me is that he’s very good at articulating himself, and has a real talent for breaking down a fighting game into its core elements.

This video features Viscant analysing his MvC3 EVO 2011 grand finals victory over PR Balrog. It’s interesting to hear what was going through his mind at various points in the match. For example, in reference to his 2nd game win in the 2nd set Viscant says:

“This game is actually pretty interesting because I wrote it off as a loss.” – Viscant

Check it out and see if you have similar thoughts during your own matches.

Domination 101

A blast from the past! This will be old news for most people, but since Poe22222 mentioned Domination 101 as his inspiration I thought I’d throw it in for good measure.

Back before he was Capcom’s community manager, Seth Killian was better known as s-kill, the author of a series of fighting game articles on the SRK forums called Domination 101. If you’ve never read them I recommend taking a look. This was Seth before he had to censor himself, and he had a lot of frank yet good things to say. For example:

“Also, Scrubs: do not give yourself the undeserved break that comes with thinking “keep-away players only play that way because they’re not good enough to do combos!”. … players good enough to execute the best keep-away traps also have great combo skills- they’re just not naive enough to try and use them all the time. Now what’s up, combo-boy?” – s-kill

I remember I struggled to agree with what s-kill had to say back in the day, but in time I came to appreciate his views. I miss “brutal Seth” but I think he’s helping us all far more in his current capacity.

Discussion and Feedback

If you have something to share about any of these strategy articles/videos with fellow OzHadou members, or even links to other nice strategy media from around the internet, post your thoughts in the Strat Talk Round-Up: Feedback and Discussion thread on the OzHadou forums.