Friday, May 20, 2011


A pretty sick showing from one of the world's best Marvel VS Capcom 3 players: Combofiend, it's all about that Bionic Arm yo.

I'm going to be gone most of today, but tonight I'll get back and try and find some cool fighting game vids floating out there.  More people should get into it!

The thing that got me into fighting games:

If you've never seen it, it's cool because you don't have to know much about fighting games to realize how awesome it is.  Diago Umehara is the friggin' man...  I saw this and was hooked from day 1.  Been playing fighting games ever since haha.

A SF2 Throwback: Guile

I have Street Fighter 3: 3RD Strike for the playstation 2 (godlike game..) and it's bundled with the old Street Fighter 2 compilation.  I've been playing fighting games for like 3 years now and am totally incapable of making it past the first few CPU opponents haha.

So here's a throwback to someone who's actually good at the game: Combos done by Gilley (

I don't think I could spend enough time to be able to do any of that..

Thursday, May 19, 2011

A Zero Introduction: Marvel vs Capcom 3

I'm pretty bored tonight so I figured I could churn another post out about my favorite character in Marvel VS Capcom 3.  If you're unaware, it's a fighting game where each player picks a team of 3 characters to face each other with.  Upon choosing each character they also must select an assist (more on that in a moment).

After teams are selected, the round starts.  Only one of your three characters is controllable at a time, but your two benched characters can be called in to perform their assist.  Assists range in all sorts of uses, from healing your character, granting additional valuable hyper meter, and performing attacks that can stop your opponent in their tracks or keep one of your combos going.

In particular, the character that I tend to play is Zero from the Megaman series.  He has high priority (which basically just means if we both push a button at the same time, there's a pretty good chance I'll hit you before you hit me) and is incredibly agile, his combos are fairly easy to perform and produce a lot of damage, and he's just the flashiest bastard in the game.  I mean he uses a beam saber...

Here's a pretty good intro video if you've never played him before, or if it's your first time checking out MVC3 you can kind of get a feel for what intermediate play looks like!

(Video link: -- I didn't perform these combo's, just showing it)

Zero's "bread and butter" combo is easy to connect and does respectable damage, but to really see the numbers fly, you need to relaunch them with assists and extend your combo's by using his level 3 buster followed by the lightning dash.

Learning how to hold a button to charge his buster while performing a combo feels weird at first, but it's really rewarding when you get it down, it makes you think a lot more about how your fingers move when you play and keeps you focused.

I think his Shadow hyper is something that goes really unused, it doesn't last particularly long and you can't get a lot of guaranteed damage out of it, but man you can confuse the hell out of someone with it.  Between Zero's multitude of command dashes and multi-hitting attacks, their screen is filled to the brim with shit that's hard to follow.

To best utilize Zero, it's often recommended to pair him with people like Dr. Doom.  Doom's plasma beam assist is off the walls with Zero, allowing him to perform shenanigans like calling in the plasma beam assist, jumping, and horizontally lightning dashing as the plasma beam is connecting.  Your opponent gets put into an awkward situation: they can't see zero and they don't know which way to block!  Because Zero switches sides they actually have to change which direction they're blocking as he does it.

I recommend varying the timing / button on the lightning dash to keep your opponent guessing for this mix-up.  You might be able to train your opponent to just blindly walk into plasma beams in fear of being crossed up!

Zergs... (vs Protoss) and the 13 Minute Mark

So this is something that's been on my mind for awhile.  Whenever I'm watching top level Zerg players the two most common reasons they lose are: 1) playing passively, 2) never teching.

Tonight the NASL aired Moman (Z) VS Incontrol (P).  The first game essentially boiled down to Moman double fast expanding into a massive unit boom while Incontrol sat back and built up to his critical mass of Colossi and then swinging in for the win.  I felt that this was kind of the perfect game to show my point, while Moman is no where near the most amazing Zerg ever, he's good enough that he shouldn't be making these sort of mistakes.

Early on in the game he took a near 60 supply lead given he was on 3 bases to Incontrol's 2.  He punched out a ton of roaches and zerglings, and then ... stopped.  Looking over at Incontrol's base he sat idly in front of his natural with a handful of units, not threatening anyone.  Moman knew this, he scouted it, it was obvious he could win if he just went over and killed him and he just sat there doing nothing.  What the hell?  Why the passivity?

It's a universally known fact that once colossi tech hits and starts rolling the Zerg is in a seriously awful position.  Roaches don't stand up to Stalkers with Colossi/Immortal support, and Hydra's with their 80hp get one shotted in droves by 3-4 Colossi.

So then the other problem creeps up, how is it that Moman is so dreadfully behind on tech?  The game is in a state where Incontrol is producing Colossi, the Protoss top tier ground unit.  It is the ground equivalent of a Carrier.  Why isn't the Zerg now producing Broodlords or Ultralisks (preferably Broodlords, Ultralisks get kind of destroyed by Immortals and Stalkers)?  Why aren't there Infestors stealing the few Colossi/Immortals that Incontrol had?  I feel there's no excuse for Zerg's to get that late in the game so dreadfully behind on tech given how macro oriented the race is.

Now this game is just anecdotal obviously, but it's a consistent theme I see in top level play.  The Zerg stays roach/hydra or roach/ling and never moves forward, then dies to a Colossi/Stalker/Sentry ball.  This is often a result of incredibly passive play, so I feel the two kind of go hand in hand.

So Zergs, ask yourself next time the game hits 13 minutes: "Could I stop a colossus or two right now?" and the answer is no, you should watch the hell out of that replay and see why.  Because that's when you'll start to see them, the average Colossus timing is between 11 and 13 minutes.  I guarantee you you'll find periods of minutes where you have a vastly superior army and had you just gone and attacked them intelligently, you would win (ref: every time a Protoss 3 gate expands and a Zerg just throws ~12 roaches and 20 lings at them and wins).  This will work almost every single time because Protoss build units slow as hell.

The Proxy Four Gate:

I haven't made a blog in forever!  Lately I've been running into a lot of free time (which is consumed by League of Legends and watching Starcraft 2..).

So what am I going to write about?   I guess the easiest thing to write about for me will be either the good games that come out and the professional fighting game / Starcraft 2 scene (as well as the balance for both).  And those 3 topics are all I'll really be focusing on, not necessarily in that order.

I constantly follow the North American Star League (NASL) and the IGN Pro League (IPL).  I'm very big fans of team Evil Geniuses, ROOT-Gaming, and Team Liquid.  I'll most likely end up writing about how their players are doing in things like the previously mentioned leagues.

It's also terribly likely I'll just end up ranting about whatever happened today or some fairly off-topic thing, but for the most part I intend to stick to those topics: Game reviews, professional fighting game scene + balance, professional starcraft scene + balance.

Something I'm actually fairly interested in trying is attempting to get professional Starcraft 2 / Fighting game player written interviews and maybe when I know how doing podcast style interviews with them!