An entire year of training... I still suck!


So… it took me 11 months to go from a 5% winrate to a 35% winrate in Street Fighter IV. I’ve read/watched all the guides. (Yes, all of them.) I’ve put in 100s hours. I’ve practiced. I’ve watched pros play. I’ve talked to people. I’ve gotten one-on-one advice. I’ve done it all.

Despite all this, I still get crushed on a regular basis. When I first started, I’d often lose 30 matches in a row. These days, it’s more like 9 or 10 at most. Still, it’s against opponents that are, quite frankly, invincible. I don’t understand how they do it. Nothing works. Blocking is impossible against their mix-ups. Offensive is impossible because their defense is too good, and they maximize every punish.

After all this time, I still cannot perform FADC combos. I cannot tech throws. I cannot hit links even when I’ve done them 100s of times. I cannot get close to characters when I want to. I cannot get away from characters when I want to. I cannot defeat charge characters. I cannot win against B or A-ranked players. I cannot hit Bison, Seth or Dhalsim with even a single normal, let alone a special.

I don’t see how to improve. I don’t understand any of this. I don’t get why it’s so hard. I don’t understand why I cannot do it. I cannot understand it. For all I’ve done, for as hard as I’ve tried… I’m extremely bad, I cannot improve, and I have no idea why.


This is why you’re not improving. I was in the same position as you maybe 8 months ago. What I did was PRACTICE!. You could practice for many hours, but you keep holding yourself back because of what you just said. The time you spent posting this question you could of been practicing, learning, and enjoying. You are asking questions that have been asked here many times, and have been answered. There are character threads for every character so you can learn tech, match ups, and an overall game plan.


post footage!


you’re not practicing enough


Franked, you have the wrong mindset and you haven’t figure it out yet. Let me ask you a question, what is the purpose of all that training you went through? If you answer with to help you win, you have the wrong mindset. The purpose of all that training is to see gains and improvements! Read this aloud, “So… it took me 11 months to go from a 5% winrate to a 35% winrate in Street Fighter IV. When I first started, I’d often lose 30 matches in a row. These days, it’s more like 9 or 10 at most.

Right there, those underline sentences are gains and improvements, you should happy about those. What you need to understand when it comes to training in something, you need to see growth, no matter how small or big it is. A 30% increase to winrate is big and losing less in a row is big too. Remember, ***WINNING SHOULD NOT BE YOUR ULTIMATE GOAL WHEN PLAYING A GAME, RATHER HOW MUCH FUN YOU CAN GET FROM SAID GAME. *** Even while losing, a person can still have fun. When I started playing MvC3, I played my sister’s bf (mediocre player) in a 2 hour long session that when to 93 games. Out of 93 games, I won 3, yet I still had fun because I was enjoying the game (however, I did tell myself to win at least one game before we called it quits).

I believe the problem here is you don’t get any fun out of SF4. I thinking that’s why you’re struggling with this game, nothing seems fun to you. Look, maybe you should post some gameplay (we insist), have us analyse it and give you some tips and advice for you to work on. You go back and try to implement it in your matches, if that doesn’t help, then you have two choices to make. 1) You should drop SF4 and look for another fighting game to get into. There’s a ton of different fighting games out there, so who knows if one of them is for you. 2) You should drop fighting games altogether. I hate to say this, but if you do not see any improvements and you do not get any type of enjoyment out of this, then quit FGs to quit stressing. There’s a reason why the FGC is niche, it’s not for everyone (Remember, results may vary). So, post up some gameplay and let us help you out. :bgrin:


also consider that if you play online ranked matches, the game’s speed and timing changes considerably in some cases. you have to be really good to overcome that obstacle against good players. play fewer ranked games and only against people with good connection
hence why links and tech throws may not work in all cases.
better play 3 matches with good connections than 20 random matches without focus and concentration. no rush to reach 3000pp. if you want more games, jump over to the lobbies.

But I am sure that if you find opponents to play offline, you’ll fare much better.


Most of the people that still play this game probably have been playing it for at least 3 to 6 years. You started 1 year ago. It’s quite normal that you’re getting demolished.

If it makes you feel any better, a good 80% of the playerbase is still terrible after playing SF4 for 6 years, so I guess you shouldn’t worry. If you keep training you’ll eventually get better, focus on playing a good game, not on winning. There are a lot of players (well, most of them tbh) who have a good win % online but are absolutely terrible, yet if you’re not “good”, you’ll get beaten by their scrub tactics (crouch tech mashing, reversals everywhere, jump a lot etc).

just by focusing on anti airs alone you can probably take your online win % up to 50/60%. Scrubs just can’t seem to stop jumping no matter how many times you DP them


I’ve played the game since Vanilla and I still suck, often wondering why. Why are some people still so far ahead of me, what is the difference that makes them godlike…

Then one day, for some random reason, I checked my friend’s profile (he’s an awesome Chun player, easily mops the floor with me) and what’d I see? Dude has 10k+ hours played in SF since Vanilla.

That’s 6× more hours played than I spent on my whole Steam library. It was on that day that I realized what a filthy casual of a Dan-tier whore I am… ;D

So what I’m hinting at is; you think you’ve practiced enough. And I’m not saying you haven’t. And I’m sure it was tough as nails getting there already. However, fighting games use a different metric for practice. And you should never underestimate those that beat you, and their dedication. Chances are, they might’ve spent a good portion of their life playing the SF franchise.

Now the question is; are you willing to grind it out and maybe…maaaaybe get satisfactory results by the end of this game’s lifespan or towards theoretical SF5, or are you going to drop it? And is something motivating you to continue playing? I would’ve dropped the game 6 months ago for good, were it not for Ultra. So yeah, consider your situation and keep it humble.

Getting into a fighting game this late feels like…drying out a lake with a table spoon. Alone. But it’s doable on a sunny season (keep it positive, keep it focused, keep it sequential, don’t try to learn everything at once, have FUN)…but you can also utterly fail if it keeps raining all the time (demotivating yourself, overestimating your learning capacity, expecting too much for too little, letting pride slow your progress).


Don’t feel bad. This game can be hard to win in even if your fundamentals are on point. Seriously, I feel handicapped for playing footsies and AA’ing sometimes because of trading, mashing, and shit like that. In fact, like you I’m also not good at tech’ing throws.

Can you post a video? Who do you play?


Links and FADC are practice. Do some really easy FADC’s, like combos that don’t even require FADC normally. Gouken’s EX Senkugoshoh FADC hurricane kick is one I can think of.

Sounds like you need to record your replays and get critique, though.


my goal is to be a year in and be better than the last year.


I have over 1000 matches recorded. (Probably close to 2000 at this point.) Is there anything in particular that would be useful? I’m going to start with some sets I had recently. (I’ve been forcing myself to play against tough opponents over and over. The goal was to discover a way to break their defense. Thus far, I have been unsuccessful.) It’ll take me a few days to edit and upload the videos.

I mainly played Sagat until very recently. Up until EVO, I felt like I was making steady improvement. Since EVO, I am frequently bodied when I play as Sagat. I think Bon-chan’s success at EVO has caused many players to (re-)learn the Sagat matchup. I still play Sagat, but I’m looking for a new main.

I really like grapplers. I’ve been playing Honda, Hawk and Zangief. I’m pretty reasonable with all three. Although… with Honda & Zangief, I often lose to projectile spam. With Hawk… I haven’t put much time in. I tried playing Cammy. Low-ranked players ragequit and high-ranked players destroy her. I tried picking up Ryu again. It’s strange… If I play Ryu like it’s vanilla SF2, I do reasonably well. If I worry about focus, Ultra, Super, FADC, or complicated combos… I am quickly defeated.

I recently called up an old friend of mine. I have rarely defeated him in Street Fighter games. I asked him to play some CvS2 with me. (Due to various circumstances, it’s the closest thing to SF4 we could play.) I wanted to validate that I had become better. That the past year wasn’t meaningless. He says, “I haven’t played CvS2 in years.” I play SF4 almost every day, and I play CvS2 once or twice a month or so. (I find that as I become better at SF4, I become better at CvS2.) So, I figured everything I learned would give me a big edge. Even he thought so. He even asked me to go easy on him. (I didn’t.) He says, “Let’s just go first to 10.” He played 5 different characters. I mostly played Sagat. He won 10 matches, I won 2.

You have to understand… my friend isn’t a fighting game pro. He’s never been to a tournament. He’s never fed an arcade machine hundreds of dollars worth of quarters. He is not a streamer. He doesn’t research. He doesn’t look up guides. He doesn’t practice. He hasn’t played for 100s hours across 1000s of matches. He doesn’t own a copy of Street Fighter IV(any version), and never has. I even had to bring CvS2 to his house because he doesn’t own that either. (and never has!) Heck, he doesn’t even play fighting games with any regularity! (This was literally, the second time he’d played a fighting game this year.)

…and despite all that… He completely owns me in CvS2? With the character I’ve spent the past year trying to develop? People say it’s all about dedication, practice and patience. What about my friend? Part of the reason I’m trying to improve at SF4, is that I want to beat this guy. I’ve been trying to beat beat him at fighting games for around 13 years! He can beat me in Darkstalkers, Marvel Super Heroes, X-Men Children of the Atom, CvS, CvS2, DoA and Mortal Kombat. I don’t understand how he does it… The recent CvS2 matches weren’t even close. :frowning: This is what causes me to think, “you either have talent, or you lose”. Either that, or I really am just that bad. Or maybe Seth Killian is right. Maybe I’m just too stupid. I’ve always thought of myself as being above-average intelligence. I always had great grades in school. And yet… I can’t figure-out fighting games. Even with the resources of the entire internet… And I must admit, if you can’t figure something out, it’s probably because you are too stupid.


Post some video.

Edit: Also, play more offline.


My dad is fifty years old. A few years ago we took my younger brother to one of those fun park/arcade places. I found an X-Men vs. Street Fighter machine and…

Yup, my dad’s better than me at XMVSF by a long shot. I’ve never seen him play anything but Galaga but he is a beast. He can also draw a great Charizard and remembers Sports stats like they’re in front of his face.

And he’s a principal. How the f**k does that job give him any of those skills? They don’t, he’s just good at it.

I’ll agree with you Franked, there is a tier among human skills. However, I’d like to tell you a story.

Although this is a more physical problem, my left thumb joint’s been broken for years (from football). I spent a lot of time thinking I was going to be crap at games no matter what, but one day I took the initiative to find new ways to do every directional combination, and before I knew it I was better than I was before!

This isn’t to say that hard work solves everything. I may sound pessimistic, but in my opinion mental capacity >>> willpower. In a game where getting better means gaining dynamic reaction time, quick thinking, fast execution and strategic wit on a millisecond scale, you won’t get anywhere just trying to have fun.

You have to be a dedicated and open thinker, willing to observe things constantly, make note and fix them at a pace that suits your learning capacity, rather than trying to keep up with the crowd.

Trust me, this is coming from someone who grew up with ADHD. Don’t spend time being jealous or hating yourself comparing other’s skills to your own, sooner or later you’ll have a skill that’ll make someone say “Oh, didn’t see that coming.” and you may still lose, but that in itself shows improvement.

Fighting games are an inherently hopeless genre, I’m not being melodramatic when I say you’re bound for heaps of despair if you look at the big picture while starting at the bottom, and that’s where everyone starts. Some just progress faster than others.

I hate to say this to you, but there’s no way around that. What I love about you is that it’s been 11 months, and you’re still looking for a way. I’ll scratch what I said earlier, willpower is equally important. You wouldn’t be playing anymore if you didn’t have that.


your reasoning is wrong if you compare other games to SF4
you should have played just SF4. playing CvS2 will mess you even more.
this game is even harder to learn than SF4. 1-2 matches a month amounts to nothing if he had played the game extensively years ago and still remembers the basics.
since he beats you at previous SF games too, it means that he plays better than you.
hence why you should play SF4 to see his knowledge transferred over to that game. there I am sure you’ll beat him more times

I remember facing a Zangief player with 2500pp in SF4 and through chat I learned he was interested in Vampire Savior Anakaris.
We played few matches and I beat him most of the times with various characters, even though I was a beginner at that game.

yet at SF4 he demolished me…


Lotta stuff here I was going to say. A 30% increase is pretty big considering you’ve only been playing a year and a lot of other folks have been playing since Vanilla.

I also agree with the fun thing. To me, SF4 isn’t fun. I always feel like my time’s being wasted when I work on stuff in that game and when I lose, I generally feel like I’ve been gypped somehow unless the player is so much better than me it’s obvious. All this as opposed to Third Strike and Guilty Gear which are games I love and rarely get angry about even when I’m losing bad. SF4 is a hard game for crazy/stupid reasons in sometimes, and if you’re not enjoying it, it’s hardly the only fighting game out there, just the most famous one.


I felt how you did for a while Doc, but S4 is growing on me. I used to think execution rewards were what fighting games were about, but as I changed from execution heavy to read heavy, I’ve found a lot of fun. S4 feels like the gambler’s version of a fighting game while a lot of those old execution heavy games felt more like sports. Personally, I enjoy the fact that the game is bat shit crazy sometimes and that I lose to bullshit. It almost feels like they put a little bit of marvel in sf…


Everyone can’t be the best at everything. If the game just doesn’t click with you, there are two choices…either continue to play for the fun and entertainment value, or, if winning is the most important thing, stop playing Street Fighter, and devote that time to a game that you can excel at.


Agree. If you can’t look at 11 months of work and recognize that an increase in win rate by a factor of seven is an improvement than you’re being extremely hard on yourself. Hell, I’ll look at one or two good reads, good anti-airs and consistently punishing unsafe stuff as a win, even if I lose the matches overall. I realize it seems outrageous, but the game (especially played online) incorporates too much random comeback potential to be yanking hair out of your skull over not getting the overall win, which I might add Franked that you have been getting the overall win with an increase in win rate to 35% from 5%. You’re not going to win every match. Period.


@Finkledoodoo‌ The bolded is part of the reason why I don’t like SF4. And honestly, I think SF4 is more execution heavy out of the box than 3s and even Guilty Gear at certain levels. The game just controls badly and feels weird, and even when I win, it’s still not fun. That was how I knew it just wasn’t for me and decided to spend my time on games I ACTUALLY enjoy not games I was playing just because my friends are playing.

Answer to your sig: CE colors in SNES SF2 right?