There’s something I believe is one of the current fighting communities biggest hurdles, that only a fair few can ever jump. It’s the communities biggest help, but at the same time its biggest crutch and biggest wall that stop players ever reaching that illusive next level.
What is it? SRK itself.
Before everyone stops reading, skips down and posts abusive messages, hear me out.
The way fighting games evolve has radically changed over the years. I remember a group of us huddled around a SFII cab in a corner shop, standing in awe at the new combo that somebody had found, swapping newly found secrets. Getting high win streaks, only to go somewhere else and get your ass handed to you by something you’ve never seen before in the 100’s of games you’ve won.
These days, with places like here on SRK and videos up on youtube, there is no need to be secretly telling your friends the latest combo you’ve found, its all there right in-front of you as soon as you need it.
In a way, this is one of the communities biggest problems. Don’t get me wrong, this can be one of the biggest and best tools to learning the game, but there’s also an inherent danger. I’ve seen videos posted, posts been made, and straight away you get things like he should have linked this way or why did he cancel into that, that’s wrong. So what do we end up with? Hundreds and hundreds of people playing the same way. If your playing the same way, knowing the same info as the other guy that’s read the forums, what makes you any better than him? How can you step up your game if every other person is on the same level?
On a similar note, I’ve also sat and read through pages and pages of posts, where a top player declares that a character/move is useless and everyone agreeing, only to go in game and find that totally isn’t the case. I even see it on the SSFIV character forums now, with people saying things are useless and spouting off tier lists, before the game is even released!
It’s this mentality of no, that ways wrong which really holds back any further progress.
How can you get out of this rut? Dare to be different, don’t be scared of doing something wrong. You’ll probably find that if you experiment with the wrong way of doing something, you might find something useful that nobody else has found yet. How do you think the top players get to the point they are? From reading the same information that’s freely available to everyone else? They are on that higher level because they are the ones finding that info before anyone else does, finding out how the game ticks by trying new things.
Just remember, you have exactly the same tools as everyone else, and there’s lots to be discovered. Just because someone posts to tell you how you should be acting in a certain situation, or how combo a is better than combo b, doesn’t mean that they are right. They are just another person, sat in their house just like you. They aren’t some superior being, and they can be just as wrong as you.
If everyone just went along with what was already written, and not dared to challenge what the higher ups say, we would still think that the world was flat.
Dare to be different.