Evo2k10 Tournament Logs


#1

I miss the days when everyone used to write tournament/travel logs after attending majors. I always enjoyed reading all the different paths leading to and from a single event.

If anyone’s willing to write them in this thread, i’ll read through them all and pick out a few for the front page. If there are enough of them after two weeks, maybe SRK would be willing to randomly select three authors and send them small prizes.

  1. You can cover the entire weekend or concentrate on one day - up to you.
  2. You can include pictures and video or go oldschool with text only - your call.
  3. You can focus on the tournament itself or “extracurricular activities” - but please keep it relatively clean.

What do you guys think? I wrote a brief retrospective but it barely scratches the surface. There are countless more stories that went down over the weekend and i’d like to hear some of them.


#2

Not sure if this will do, but I wrote a short article on the tourney for the site I work for:

Evolution 2010: A Weekend of Hype at SNK-CAPCOM


#3

That’s pretty much perfect actually. Would you mind copy/pasting the text here just so we have it all in one place? I’ll do the same with mine:


#4

here you go


#5

Everything, Everywhere, Everyone

I wrote this for my friends, so please excuse the tone if it’s not scene oriented enough :smiley:

I waited almost a week to write this. I’m not sure why - I felt a deep sense of discontent and regret from my perfomance at Evolution 2010, but at the same time, it was an experience that made a slash in my long term memory that will last until the day I die.

Evo 2010 is the world finals of fighting games, held yearly in Las Vegas. Europe, Australia, and Asia hold qualifiers to send their best players there on planes with full amenities at Ceasars Palace, and if they do well enough, make national news when they come home.

Ever since Super Street Fighter 4 was released, I practiced a character named Juri for the tournament. She was a new character and seemed very promising, but as time went on, I found that I couldn’t control her well enough to compete on a professional level. Any character in a SF game can compete, it’s just whether they fit your style enough, and whether you have the execution to make that happen; about a week before the tournament I realized I needed to make major changes, and I switched to Guile, the first character I ever played in Street Fighter 4.

The change was immediately noticable. My win record ascended to over 90% in online matches over the course of 40 games (my Juri record was roughly 50-60% in online games and casuals). I felt totally ready, but at the same time, there was this unease in me - I couldn’t help but feel unprepared, due to the lack of time I spent practicing Guile, but I felt much more assured to make it further in the tourney.

My first match in the winners bracket was very one sided though, I played a pro Ken that beat me VERY convincingly. In fact the match was so crazy that I felt priviledged to play him, he was just that good. The link combos he was pulling off without even trying were just a testament to true practice and strength under duress.

My second match was much different. It was mine to win. I was in the losers bracket and played a C. Viper. The first game was easy, which I won 2-0. The second game seemed to be in the bag too, after I won the first round. This is where my opponent finally started to read me correctly, and actually dizzied me on the way to a near perfect. This shook me up a little, and I ended up losing the next round, making that game 1-2.

Last game up, I was ready to completely flip my playstyle in order to prevent him from reading me again. I had been using a complete rushdown up to that point, and instead switched to a turtle Guile. This worked very well in the first round which I won. The second round was going great too, but after a very long fight that almost ran the timer out, he pulled out a great EX ground pound to kill me on wakeup. Down to the last round…

This one seemed to take forever in my mind. I felt the taste of actually advancing at Evo, and that, in itself, degraded my execution. I missed three (yeah, three) combos, and things were looking really bad. My opponent was feeling the pressure too however, and he wasn’t able to pull off the EX pound into flame kick reliably anymore. I tried to capitalize on this…

But he won the round the same way he won the last one! And that was it. I was eliminated, 2-0, 1-2, 1-2. It was just the first bracket of Pool P but the rest of the pool waiting to play gave us a hell of a cheer.

And that was it. Right there… I felt it. This is why people do this. This is why people compete. My emotions were so back and forth the rest of Friday night. I was crushed at my lack of practice and execution, and I was thrilled that I actually competed at the biggest Street Fighter tournament in the world. I hated that I underestimated my opponents - but I LOVED how it felt to play…!

On Saturday I saw a legendary upset of Justin Wong, who didn’t even make it to the top 8 in Super Street Fighter 4. A Taiwan player named Gamerbee barely edged him out, using the player (get this), that Wong publically claimed was the 3rd worst in the entire game. It was absolutely humiliating for him, and he was nowhere to be seen the rest of the day, not even in the money match room, a place he loves to be.

The top 8 was very unpredictable due to this, and people were dying for a Gamebee / Daigo Umehara final, but that didn’t play out; Ricky Ortiz, ended up being in the finals. It was pretty uneventful because Ricky chose Rufus as his player. No one has ever beaten Daigo in a tournament with Rufus, and Daigo knows the matchup very well - yet top players stubbornly insist on using that character against him. After Daigo won, the tournament was complete.

I wish I could have played some of the top players, especially Daigo. However, this weekend was incredible. I’m not a tournament newbie anymore, and I saw things that were so insanely exciting I’ll always remember them. It was incredibly amazing being there. SF forever!!!


#6

I wrote one for reddit


#7

I also wrote my own log of the entire 5 day event in small delectable doses. You can check them out here, here, and here!


#8

My Evo Log


#9

Here goes. I jotted down some thoughts real quick for this. I just would like to say “Thank you” to everyone involved in helping run this tournament. It was a fantastic experience start to finish.

After a few months of putting money aside, I finally got to see it pay off when Evo rolled around. This would be my first out of state tournament and my first Evo. I had put in a lot of time and tried to travel locally here in Texas as much as my work would allow me to do so. I wanted very badly to represent Austin, And Texas in general. I felt very ready for Evolution and then I saw my bracket. Justin Wong was in it and I was absolutely terrified. I saw a few other names I recognized from match videos and I tried to prepare myself for match ups I was not used to.

Every night after work I went straight to UFO and played as much as I possibly could leading up to the tournament. This isn’t exactly outside of the norm for me, but I really focused on SSF4 as much as possible. A few of us were going to fly, but the plane tickets fell through and we ended up taking a 21 hour drive to Vegas. While it may sound like hell, it was actually a blast.

We arrived in Vegas late thursday night and met up with a few of the other Texas players from various other cities. We had a few drinks and then went to sleep a bit early. 3 of my friends played at 9:00AM so I really wanted to be there to support them. Being there and watching pools I really was just itching to play. Unfortunately my pool started at 5:00pm.

I really felt starstruck at first seeing so many players I have watched over the years in person. I quickly collected myself and played a bit of casuals and just watched matches. Suprisingly a lot of very hype matches did not make the stream. I watched one of my friends get eliminated and went back to the room to get some rest before I played. I ended up having lunch and chatting with some friends from Houston.

I was nervous, my pool started soon. I made sure to eat something light and keep myself hydrated as much as possible. As I walked into the ballroom toward my pool my name was called and I had to play a match immediately. My opponent was a Ken player which made me relax a bit. I had been training with Bannana Ken from Puerto Rico. About a month before Evo he showed up for an internship in Austin and was at UFO quite a bit. The time I put in was showing. I dropped no combos, I knew what to do in every scenario I was put in, and I took the game 2-0.

My next opponent was 1 hour later and the third followed shortly after. Two matchups I was comfortable with as well, I took them both 2-0 in a convincing manner. For my 4th match I found out I was playing a female Viper player from socal. When they called our names, they informed us we would be playing on the stream.

After my third win, I was pretty much relaxed. However, when I heard I would be playing on the stream I went right back to being nervous. As we walked toward the stage, I was very quiet. She spoke to some of the big name players and they told her not to worry about me. That she had it. I wondered how they would feel when they saw me actually play. I also wondered how they could say this literally 5 feet from me. This actually fueled me to win even more. I sat in line for about 15 minutes waiting to play and texted my friends back in Austin to watch the stream.

When I went up to the stage I was emotionless. When we played I tried to keep my composure and play as solid of a game as I could. I took the set 2-0 and as I left the stage I was boo’d. I expected it actually and I smiled in response. It had to be someone I suppose. I felt before I played the match that win or lose there was no way to not get some flack. All the saltyness I had was gone soon after though.

I got back to pools and discovered I had to play a Dallas player. I was upset that we ended up meeting in our bracket, but we wished each other luck and played a great match. It ended up being 2-1 in my favor. It was ridiculously close and nerve wracking. As I looked at the bracket I had one match left to play and if I won, Justin was next. At this point I had not lost a match yet. My next opponent was a Hawaiin Guile player named Dagger G. I feared this match up and went into the match with very little Guile match up experience. He zoned me masterfully and I lost 0-2.

Before I even got a chance to relax, I had to play Ryder. I decided to try Boxer out against his Abel, but I was crushed. I switched to Dictator, the character I had been working on for months and took the second game convincingly. The third game Ryder adapted to my habbits and took the game. I was a bit upset as I wanted badly to get out of pools. The work I put in carried me pretty far and I got to play some great matches though.

Soon after I found out Bannana Ken made it out of his pool defeating AndyOCR. We practiced the Ken/Dictator matchup extensively and I was quite proud of him. I enjoyed Vegas with my friends the rest of Friday night. Saturday I did more of the same, played a few games in casuals, and saw upset after upset in semi finals. Justin Wong not in top 8? It was a very shocking experience as I am sure it was for everyone else.

I bumped into more friends in line to watch Bang the Machine. Getting to watch this movie gave me a good look at what the community was like 10 years ago and how much it’s changed. This movie really was inspirational for me and quite hilariously dated. I am so glad that it continues to be shown each year. It was a highlight for me, for sure.

Sunday I sat 3 rows from the stage and watched most of the game’s Finals. It was hype, it was huge, and if nothing else convinced me I had to do this every year, SSF4 top 8 sure did.


#10

Evo 2010, I against I.

This was my 4th Evo tournament. First and foremost, seeing how Evolution…evolved (sorry), from the first Evo in 2002 to the grand spectacle it is today is surreal. In 2002, we were at UCLA, in 2010 we are in Ceasar’s Palace. I want to say that there were more entrants in Super Street Fighter IV this year, than all of the events combined in 2002, in 2002 we played on cabinets, where as today we sit down in front on consoles with our TE’s or Hori’s or in this years case, our Xbox 360 arcade sticks. In 2002 the big match everyone wanted to see was Rowtron vs. Justin in MvC2. in 2010 it was Justin vs. Daigo in SSFIV, in 2002 I’m gonna guess that there were no more than 10 women that entered in any of the tournaments. In 2010, we actually had a women’s tournament. in 2002 we saw Justin join Empire Arcadia, in 2010 we saw Justin sign with EG. I probably could go on for hours for all of the changes that have happened in the span of 8 years, but in short, to see where things were at the start of Evolution, and to see where they’ve come is something that I am proud to be apart of.

So we arrive on Thrusday to find out our reservations at Ceasar’s Palace were incorrect, and that our room wasn’t going to be ready until Friday. Minor setback, but it didn’t matter to me. I was in Vegas! But a lot of us had to scramble to find a place to stay, my original plan was to get a full nights rest and to be asleep by 9pm…which turned into falling asleep on a very small couch at 3am in a friends room at the Flamingo. As expected, I couldn’t really sleep (I’m sure this happen to a lot of players as well), the feeling that I can best describe as “the calm before the storm”. Who am I playing 1st round? (Was in Tokido’s pool so I wasn’t going to be surprised if I ended up running into him), thinking about EVO 2009 and my performance there (out in 3…only win was a DQ…definately was salty about that one). For a little history, in 2009 I put a lot of pressure on myself to do well to get Seattle more hyped to play SFIV, and to get us on the map. I was so caught up on that aspect that I just buckled under pressure and choked. I decided while tossing and turning on the very small sofa, that this time around I’m just going to focus on my game. I mean if I do well, then hey I did well for Seattle right? It was at that moment where a sense of relaxation came over me and I finally fell asleep…for 2 hours =.

The time I woke up till the time I saw who I was playing against is kind of a blur (blame it on lack of sleep plus the liquor from the entire weekend). But once I sat down, it was go time. Everything that I had worked on from the moment SSFIV was released was put to the test. A lot of people were surprised that I was going to run Rose first instead of Bison, but I felt confident that I could do well with her, and that confidence (as corny as this sounds) was shown. I could feel the nervousness of my opponents. To me, some of them were scared (can’t really blame them considering the calibur of the tournament…1700 players all gunning for #1. Pretty intense.) People to me weren’t playing as safe as they normally would. A few of my opponents where making careless jumps that were getting anti-aired. There were a few huge mistakes that I made that didn’t get punished, but every mistake they made got punished right. I confidently won my first three matches and I was already pleased with my performance compared to last year, and realized that last year I was that super nervous guy that was making careless mistakes and dropping combos and oppertunities. I talked to my judge about the odds of making it onto the big screen, and all he said that I’d have to do is run into JR Rodriguez and I’ll be up there. 1 match to go, how hard could it be? I’ve done well so far, so who is to stop me from living out the dream of playing on the big stage? Then comes along a T. Hawk player from Puerto Rico I believe his handle on here is Joyo.

Now I’ve played my share of T. Hawks on XBL…ya know the ones that condor dive like it’s the most safest thing on earth? The ones that can and will spd inbetween your strings if you miss a link? I was confident, but not arrogant. Sleeping on an opponent is a quick way to send you to losers or worse, send you home. Match begins, I take the first round by time over, I think the Joyo underestimated my patience level, but quickly changed things up and scored a huge life lead in the 2nd and 3rd rounds and sat back to easily take the first game. Now I’m the one that is nervous, I’m sitting there thinking about the match up, hearing my friends in the background rooting for me while Joyo’s friends are up in arms right next to me, celebrating like this whole thing was in the bag. I started psychic myself out. Should I pick Bison? What happened in the match? What can I do to win? I tried to be slick and go to character select and hover the cursor over Bison to get a reaction out of him, he immediately looks up and has a look of disgust on his face and starts to slouch. I still think about it. What is going to happen if he gets a life lead on me again? Picking Bison could lead me to taking a lot of risks that could ultimately cost me the match. But deep down I was really confident that I could out play him with Rose, I turn and ask my friend Duggish what to do and he calmly says

“You already know what you need to do. Pick Rose and do what you do best.”

I pick Rose and steamroll my way through the 2nd game, now it’s his friends that are a little quiet, and my friends from Seattle getting hyped. Joyo quickly runs it back and I take the first round, he takes the second, by this point he has a super which I bait out and I’m feeling really confident. I manage to get 2 ultras, one in which I use to reset momentum and later gain a life lead. I got for an ultra setup near the end of the round and it pays off, but I second guess myself and backdash so he only gets hit by one orb. So here I am with a full super, one orb and we are both at about 15%, I go for a safe jump and a string that ends with soul sprial and I FADC backwards to save the orb. I walk forward as the orb passes in front of me and stop just in front of him and as soon as it moves behind me i score a throw leaving him at 5%. I walk back and do a jab soul spark FADC to bait a jump, and sure enough he jumps, and the orb is coming. In my mind (and later find out in his mind as well) I’m thinking “he’s gonna get hit, you set him up and you are moving on.” at the last second the orb whiffs and he lands and does an SPD to take the final round, of the final game. His friends scream and get hype, my friends kinda wince at what just happened, Joyo gets up and starts slamming the seat of his chair and is super hyped. And I’m there standing next to him with the biggest grin on my face. I get his attention for just a moment and shake his hand and tell him “That was THE best match I’ve ever played in my fighting game career.” I should’ve been salty, but I played perfectly and at the best I could. Even after the stomping I got from him in game one, I kept my composure and answered back, and even though I had everything planned out at the end, the cards just didn’t fall my way. My only regret was that match not being on the big screen, cause it was intense to say the least. I wish Joyo luck as he moves on, and I play another T. Hawk in losers and switch to Bison to take him out, then lose to a Guile 2-1 in what some would think would be the most boring match they’ve ever seen (full screen fireballs for 80 seconds), but to some they thought it was the tightest match (my friend called it a dog fight, see who can break down first and make a mistake). Turns out his brother mains Rose, and I told him my roommate plays Guile and we both agreed we played the match perfectly.

The rest of the day (and weekend for that matter) was spent hanging out with friends from Seattle, some newly found friends I met at SNCR, as well as meeting some new friends. I watched Seattle play on the big screen, and while some lost (Riki-Oh vs. Mike Ross, Thai Vega vs. Ed Ma, The Future vs. Valle) Some also won (Delucifer vs. KDZ, Cole vs. Daigo in HDR, Zig21 vs. a Balrog player). Played some MvC3, met up with MarkMan and chatted about going to out to eat when he comes up for PAX later this year. Drank quite a bit. And finished it off watching top 8 on Sunday, and watched up and comers like Vangief, and Shizza live out that dream that the other 1692 players wanted…playing in the top 8 at the Evolution World Finals.

So as I said this was my 4th Evolution Tournament, each year I think to myself how it was the best one yet and there’s no way that any other can top it…and each year I’m proven wrong. Evo 2011 will more than likely prove me wrong in saying that Evo 2010 was the best by far. And with the Fighting Game Genre back in full force, I’m confident that next year will beat this year by a long shot. I will say that my avatar sums up 2010 in short, for myself and for Team Seattle.


#11

DR.B’s EVO Logs : Past,Present,& Future

RICH KID ACADEMY : EVO 2009 - 2010 Media & Coverage

http://shoryuken.com/f8/tales-evo-rich-kid-academy-dr-b-200275/index2.html

RICH KID ACADEMY : EVO 2008 - Media & Coverage

http://shoryuken.com/f8/dr-bs-evo-08-companions-guide-pics-vidz-commentary-162131/

RICH KID ACADEMY : EVO 2007 - Media & Coverage

http://shoryuken.com/f8/tales-evo-07-vegas-pics-vidz-commentary-137487/

ENJOY !!! A bunch of great memories,pics,and videos !!! Thanks 4 the Love…More goodies to come !

http://www.RichKidAcademy.com


#12

Evo - Blogs - Shoryuken

My takes on evo


#13

Yes I did.


#14

Great article. There’s a minor error concerning HDR though:

“DGV, a player who started out as an online player, took second place, and knocked out AfroLegends, which shocked most of the crowd.”

Afrolegends’ Balrog was actually knocked out by Snake Eyez’ Zangief in the Loser’s final. DGV never played Afrolegends in top 8.


#15

Thanks for pointing that out. I originally had what you said on there, but my friends who watched the stream told me it was wrong, and gave me that result. I should have went with my gut instead of listening to them. I’ll fix that right now.


#16

Evo2k10 - Meeting Legends

Here’s one I wrote about a local player for my website.

Here’s the link to the article:

Evo 2010: A New Challenger Has Appeared ? Wild Gunmen ? Calgary’s Geek Culture Magazine

And here’s the text:

Evo 2010: A New Challenger Appears

Thousands went to compete ? tens of thousands were watching. By now we all know the winners, legendary Daigo Umehara and Ricky Ortiz. We all heard about the upsets ? such as the famous Justin Wong not making it to the finals ? and entrees like GamerBee that surprised everyone by making it to the finals.

It was Evo 2010, where all the best fighting game players meet to duke it out every year at various games. The biggest one, by far, is Super Street Fighter IV. And for those looking to prove their worth, competition is fierce.

But we all watched this from our desks at home. Some 30,000 of us were online watching the finals. And we didn?t see the final match live because the stream crashed.

But Jerrick Dela Rosa did. Jerrick trekked out to Las Vegas for the competition, representing our hometown of Calgary. Fightstick in hand, the 18-year-old went to compete against the best.

And although an American Cammy player knocked him out of his pool, Jerrick experienced the largest and longest-running fighting game tournament in the world like we never could.

One of the greatest moments for Jerrick was just after he lost hist first match (every game is played best of three matches) and just before the next one started, someone tapped him on the shoulder.

?You know you can focus-cancel those dive kicks right? Then you can focus it and punish it.?

Turning around, Jerrick stared in awe as he received advice from Ryan Hart ? European Street Fighter IV Champion and Guiness World Book of Records holder for longest consecutive rounds without a loss.

And although it still wasn?t enough to win the round, Jerrick still spent the next two hours looking for Hart, to thank him. Hart is known to use Sagat in his matches (a top-tier character), but has recently been playing with Guy as well, one of the new characters in the Super Street Fighter IV line-up and the same character Jerrick uses.

After finding him, Jerrick learned a few new tricks from this seasoned veteran. Hart even played a few casual matches with him throughout the weekend. And boy was it an eye opener.

?How his Guy stacks up against my Guy is just like holy crap,? Jerrick said.

?Playing a top player in the flesh, it?s like he knows your every move. He just has that much knowledge about tournament play and feeling out the opponent. He knows when you?re gonna jump, he knows when you?re gonna block.?

The tips and game experience proved took Jerrick?s game to a whole new level, and that wasn?t the only celebrity encounter for Jerrick that weekend.

Like many, he lined up to see world-champion Daigo ?The Best? Umehara and get a few things signed.

Although there was a language barrier, Daigo is a Japanese player who speaks little english, he greeted Jerrick with a smile and pointed to where he should sign.

?To me, those top players are like celebrities, so I don?t know how to have conversations with them,? admitted Jerrick. But he approached he heroes none-the-less.

?Meeting someone like Daigo, even though he can?t speak the language, it?s overwhelming because he?s the world champion, right?

?To shake his hand is such an honour, it?s like I told my friends back in Calgary, ?Yo, I should Daigos hand! I could feel energy emitting from his fingers.?

If there?s one thing that surprised Jerrick, it?s that all these Street Fighter legends are actually the nicest people you could hope to meet.

Even his brief encounter with the notorious Justin Wong left an impression. Wong is easily one of the best players in the world, as the chief rival to world champion Daigo Umehara, Wong usually places right next to him. He is also known to showboat a lot during matches, with a cocky attitude that involves getting up a edging on the crowd during matches. It?s gotten him a bit of ire from the community, especially when he?s compared to other great, but humble players.

Meeting the man in person however, Jerrick was impressed.

Before the doors opened, Jerrick realized he was standing next to Justin Wong in line. Wong was talking with his group when Jerrick looked up and said, ?Hey, you?re Justin Wong.?

In that brief conversation, where Jerrick told Wong how much he respected his work and Wong replied and engaged in civil, fun conversation with a fellow Street Fighter.

?In tournaments, he comes off as a cocky person and people don?t like that. But honestly, when I met him in person, he was actually one of the most chill people ever. The cocky-ness is just out of the question when you start talking to him. He?s actually a nice person.

?But he?s cocky because he can be cocky. He?s good at the games he plays and he has a right to be cocky.?

It?s experiences like these ? and the tension being in the crowd, cheering on two fighters as they battled it out on the mainstage (not unlike a boxing match) that led to the best Street Fighter experience that anyone could hope for.

And when he came back and rejoined the circuit, even the local talent noticed the difference. Adam Wozney, the best El Feurte in Alberta (read about him in the last issue of the magazine) noticed a huge step up in Jerrick?s game.

To test your Street Fighter game, join the local circuit and take on talent like Jerrick every Wednesday at Tubby Dog on 17th Avenue.


#17

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Evolution 2010 at the Ceasars palace in Las Vegas, Nevada was an experience that no review could possibly give justice to. Being that it was held mid July, the temperature being under 14,000 degrees (even after sundown) was uncommon. For most of us, the temperature wasn’t an issue since every amenity was available within the walls of Ceasars Palace. From buffets to bars, there was no part of Vegas you had to miss if you chose to stay in all 3 days.
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Arriving Thursday night was a must since check in for ALL pools was Friday Morning at 9am. The line was outrageously long and super street fighter IV was over 2000 people on its own. Since we weren’t competing, Alissa and I were able to take off to the pool (which was PACKED but relaxing with a bar stocked with anything from strawberry margaritas to overly peppered bloody marrys) and let all the Box Arena Fighters battle the chaos. I wouldn’t say there was a better way for the organizers to handle check in, but I would say that separating it into 2 different times in the day may have helped. About half the pools (Eight 128 man brackets played with 2 ps3 setups each) were ran between 9 and 5pm, and the other half from 5 to Midnight. I heard some complaints of people not getting to play their first matches even after 2 hours, and some played right away. Of course, each individual “bracket wrangler” was in charge of how their pool ran, so the speed was up to the DQ’ing abilities of each wrangler. Some were frustrated that people weren’t getting disqualified early enough, and some would argue they got disqualified too soon. Honestly, if you aren’t there, you aren’t that interested in playing IMO. As far as I could tell, the seeding was done really well. I didn’t hear of any brackets being stacked with top players or too many people from the same cities/states. Of course, I wasn’t inspecting every bracket, but being as I heard no complaints on that topic, it would be fair to say the Evo staff did an amazing job on the brackets.
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HDR ran at noon on Saturday and yet again, Alissa and I were at the pool, this time with the company of Deci, Genghis, BeefCake, NetEdge, and ShadyK. From what I heard, there was approximately 6 pools with 64 man brackets in each. Being that this was significantly smaller than SSFIV, it went by in just a few hours and didn’t suck up an excessive amount of down time for the players. We all had tons of time after to eat, gamble and get a few drinks before semi finals. There were some epic moments in semi finals including our beloved Justin Wong not making top 8 and Shizza making his first Evo top 8 appearance. At 10pm was the showing of “Bang the Machine” Those who were more interested in playing joined Gootecks in the “Salty Suite” for a $100 entry 16 man bracket. A $10 entry fee got you drinks, snacks, and the privilege to watch some of the worlds greatest SSFIV players put big $ down on their skills. San Diego’s Genghis took part as well and made the Box Arena proud by going 0-2 with legendary greatness. Though room 3620 was literally hotter than the surface of the sun, it made for an amazing night with some of the best company you could find at Evo 2010. Our personal experiences aren’t really significant to the review of Evolution as a tournament, but I will say we had one hell of a time.
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By far, I would say that Sunday was everyone’s favorite day. Starting with the Female Finals at 4pm and ending with the grand finals of SSFIV at 9pm, the evening went right to schedule. Surprisingly, the timing of the entire weekend was impeccable and we were always in the right place at the right time. Since San Diego had no players in top 8 (or even make it out of their pools) we all had to focus our cheers on Mike Ross. SoCal’s most famous E. Honda, whom never ceases to amaze us all, took 4th place. Our cheering section was the entire back 3 rows of the right half of the auditorium. We kept it classy just as San Diego always does and made sure we had plenty of alcohol and rice crispy treats to last us a good 4 hours. Daigo took first place like we knew he would and Ricky Ortiz made the West Coast proud by fighting his way to second. Grand Finals were Epic to say the least and just in case you missed it for one reason or another, just make it next year for Evolution 2011 its better in real life anyway.
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For those of you that saw us storming the ballroom with our new line of Box Arena shirts, don’t worry, we saw you too! With enough requests… those shirts will be for sale at theboxarena.com . Until next time… The Box Arena loves you!
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<3 HunEBee?

More Pictures at our EVO 2010 Smugmug Album

www.theboxarena.com


#18

Master Giby’s is on the front page. Keep 'em rolling. I’ll try to get one posted every other day.


#19

Evolution: 2k10 and Beyond

Is it just me or is it really hard to come home from Evo/Majors/Vegas? You come from this atmosphere where only games/skill matter, money is just an object, and enjoying time with friends is what is important…then, all of a sudden, blam… back to reality. It’s mad depressing :sweat:

At any rate, I arrived at Caesar’s Palace late thursday night. I got to my room and immediately took a shower. I went downstairs, took out 100 dollars from the atm, and put it on double zero. bam, I was done gambling for the weekend :rofl::looney:. I was pretty focused and anxious for the tourney, so I went to bed at about midnight, trying my best to be well prepared for the morning. The only game I entered in this year was super 4, so I wanted to be in top shape to bring my A game…

Day 1

I wake up at about 7:30 or so, get dressed, drink a meal replacement shake and go downstairs. As I stand in the registration line and meet with some friends i haven’t seen in a while, I start to get REALLY excited. THIS IS EVO2k10.

I am assigned to Pool B, and they begin immediately as the doors open. My pool judges are very aggressive, and immediately they begin. While some players in my pool were distracted by lights, banners, daigo, mad catz sticks, marvel 3, free t-shirts, and other distractions, I put on my headphones and chill out. I am here to play Street Fighter 4. I am here to win.

I bide my time and patiently scope out some matches. I see sanford play and think to myself, “I WANT TO PLAY HIM…”.

My first match is up, and I dont have tourney nerves, but I feel anxious… The first tourney match at a major tournament is what can set the tone for the rest of the tournament, so I take it very seriously. My first opponent is a ken player. I want to test his reactions and tendencies, so I flash kick and jump in a lot in the first round. He fierce dps all of them (as expected lol) but also dps things he shouldn’t have… so I take full advantage of this dp happy ken player in the next 4 rounds to win. I started rounds by baiting dp, something like empty jumping or bazooka knee then block…then I would punish. Followed that up with some hardcore turtling and he was pringles. He was actually pretty decent in terms of execution and he kind of knew what he was doing, but you can tell he had never fought a real guile player.

I go to play my first match in bbcs teams while the bracket continues. My bang took out a hakumen and I almost won a bang mirror, but my team had my back and we won. the BBCS team tourney was really sloppily run, which really made me apathetic towards it. You could tell they were doing the best they could, but man…its really sad aksys didnt show up to make sure they had the right gear (although even then it would have been bad, cause if you remember last year, people were waiting 4 hours for one match in blazblue tourney…).

I go back to pool B for my second match. sadly, I dont remember much about this. It was pretty much guile vs sub-par ryu… iirc I just played semi aggressive and he couldn’t block.

Since I won my first two matches, I have a 2 hour break. It is now that I play marvel 3 once, go get my t-shirts, and get my ass handed to me by an arakune player who was SUPER GOOD…dude pulled off 2 160+hit combos on 2 members of my team…lol :wtf:

I make my way back to my pool, and actually take a good look at my bracket. I notice that if I win my next two matches, I would play sanford. I think to myself, “I am going to play Sanford. No one is going to stop me from playing Sanford…”

The opportunity to play one of the strongest opponents in the US excited me, because it was what I really wanted.

My third match was against a bison player. He was pretty legit but I used guiles advantages in the matchup against him pretty well. I won 2-0 but the rounds were close.

My fourth match was against Awalk (from CA iirc?)… Anyway…this was an awesome set…we were both hype because we knew the winner would be up against the beast from NY…

He played Guy in the first game. At one point, he was actually winning, but I pulled off some sick air throws and combos to clutch it out. It was one of those games where someone is clearly beating someone down, but then in the second round when all hope seems lost, someone gets downloaded and an epic comeback happens. I remember being down on meter and on my last bit of health in the second round, but I made one really beast airthrow that had him mindfucked. He then woke up super and I took the win…frustrated, he went to sagat. The first sagat game he rolled over me, taking advantage of jumping strong and his spacing was on point. I got REALLY frustrated and made some dumb mistakes. Some really poor jumpins and booms… the third game was much the same, he rolled over me round one, and had me down in round two as well. Then, I had another moment where I achieved a “higher” level of play, I started baiting jumpins and then countering them with cr. fierce or airthrow, catching him in patterns with sonic hurricane or a jumpin, sobat-ing through low tigers and other stuff. I frustrated him and won.

My next match was against Sanford Kelly. He played Sagat against me. I went into the match saying to myself that I would rather lose by time out then for him to style/have me doing stupid shit. I played as lame as I possibly could for the most part, I did that. However, his reactions,zoning, game knowledge, and execution really came into play. the rounds were competitive but he won 2 games to 0. I talked to him and lamerboi afterwards and they were both really cool about offering me advice to improve.(more on this later and shout outs to both)

My next match was my first match in losers. I played a blanka player by the name of DJVest (sp?)…He was pretty good, I definitely see why he went so far in losers. ALthough I know the blanka matchup pretty well…he managed to adjust to my patterns and tie our set at 1-1. I played really well in the final game by baiting and punishing slides, airthrowing balls, reversal sonic booming balls, anti-airing etc…although the main reason why I won was because I landed a (full damage) dash ultra 1 in the final round. Going into the final seconds of the final round, I airthrew a blanka ball and cemented my sick comeback by cornering him and ex-flash kicking his reversal ball attempt.

My next match had me paired up against one of my weaknesses…RUFUS :looney::annoy:… worse even, it was a good rufus…

Younglegend and I had a good match. he won 2-0…the thing is…I played well, he just used rufus’s advantages against guile to win. Every round was close…That kid is mad good. I remember he countered the cr.fierce option select with ex-messiah a couple of times, which really got in my head. despite that, we had a really good set.

With that loss, I was eliminated from the tournament with a record of 5-2…top 8 in my pool of ~120 people.

I walked around a bit more, meeting folks I havent seen in a while and also meeting some new faces. My team got eliminated from the bbcs team tourney, so I was done with tourneys for the weekend. I played around a bit more with marvel 3, and went to cheer on other Louisiana players in their pools. A few others made it pretty far in their pools, so I took solace in the fact that LA represented. I had the opportunity to speak with tatsu, and offered him my thanks for some advice he had given me before which helped my game a lot (shout out to tatsu for being mad humble). I stayed until the last match on the big screen, got some food, and then went to sleep/shower. I was pretty beat but I felt good about the way I played that day. I was free, but not “that” free…lol :nono:

Day 2

The tail end of day 2, was a blur in my mind. Nothing short of unforgettable.

I woke up pretty early again, but I felt good. After another meal replacement milkshake (which I advise everyone try for tourneys like this…Its cheap, fills you up, and gives you energy, but keeps your reactions and alertness…), I was ready to crack open MvC3…Myself and Dakota (thedarkphoenix, who did a nice writeup on the game found in the mvc3 subforum) got a lot of games in all day 2. I also had the privelage of playing 1v1 with RyRy for about an hour, and he helped me learn some of the basics really quickly. IMO, RyRy and KDZ were the best players of that build. Both were doing some combo vid type stuff…In addition to MvC3, I also played mightymar a few times in vampire savior. my execution on that setup was not very good and he walked all over me, but I learned and saw a few things in motion that I have only been able to read about until now. Seriously, that dude has a beast Anakaris…

I made it a point to watch all of warahk’s, dagger g’s, and lamerboi’s matches. all I can say is fuck rufus, ryu, and dhalsim. lol :annoy: :arazz:

seriously though, watching those guys on the big screen made me a little envious. I wanted that. I still want that. I thought to myself, “I have to ACHIEVE that…” :karate:

Pretty much played marvel 3 until they kicked everyone out for the bang the machine screening. I was excited to see this film for the first time, because for 4 years i have heard about how epic it is, seen the youtube clips, but have never been able to see it. It did not disappoint. To actually see the past and present versions of a community like this in person is astonishing. Furthermore, it was really funny and outdated, but I really enjoyed it and I was glad I got to see it. It was actually pretty inspiring.

At this point, I am dead tired, and about to take a shower and call it a night. I go to my room, and get a call from kenmastersX. He convinces me to accompany him to the Salty Suite. On our way there, we run into a french player who had just left. He told us they were doing the 100 dollar high roller tourney. Kenmastersx and I, with our delusions of grandeur, and desire to play the strongest players, instantly withdrew money from the ATM (lol) (shoutout to ATM zangief) and went on to the suite. This was easily one of the dumbest/most stupid moments of my life. I can remember stone and I repeatedly looking at each other like, “please stop me from doing this lol.”

Entering the Salty suite was unlike any experience I have ever had. We pay the entrance fee, the doors open, and EVERYONE who is important to the SF fighting game-world is there. It was like, this dream world inside of the surreal environment that evo/vegas is anyway…totally unreal…

The tournament had started by the time we got there, but we were determined to make the night worth our while. I met BP Amoco (sick gief) and we talked shit for a while, and I then had the honor of money matching Alex Valle. My goal was to get my game slayed, and in the process, learn and grow from it, and I knew he could expose my weaknesses and show me what I need to work on. We played a first to 5, surrounded by the likes of many top players like Online Tony, Banana Ken, Rico Suave, Shizza, and several representatives from Australia. Valle gave me what I desired. I played well for the first two games, but then he showed me my true colors. He completely downloaded me by game three and shut me down, frustrated me, and destroyed me five games in a row. Granted, it was at 4:00 am and I had been up since 7 am, but so had he. I played sloppy, shittily, and was mentally weak. However, he offered me words of encouragement and told me what his mindset was as he faught me. These words, combined with what I learned from Sanford and Lamerboi, taught me a valuable lesson.

It was at 4:00 am, during a lonely walk back to my hotel room, that I realized something about myself.
I am simple.
My reactions are poor.
My thinking is not “active” enough.
I am a robot.
I don’t mix it up.
I don’t think.
My execution is poor.
I am scared. Too scared.
I don’t play to win.
I play to not-lose.

That is the difference between a good player and a great player. A great player can adapt to his opponent, read his opponent, and he knows when to play to win and when to play to not-lose. What I realized, is that by utilizing my ghandi-like attitude and playstyle, it is very effective at mid-advanced level play. However, it is simply not good enough against elite level competition. The truth is, losing by time out will get you respect for not being an idiot, but you will not win. THe only way to get TRUE RESPECT is by claiming victory. You must find a way to outplay the opposition. You must take a chance. You must overcome the matchup. It is only then that you will be acknowledged. I realized that I still had a long road to travel.

In addition to this realization, I also recalled that actions in game tend to be microcosms or reflections of the real world persona. I knew that my defeat showed myself and others that, as a person, I am easily frustrated, mentally unstable, impatient, slow, childlike, impulsive, but worst of all, I am weak. This was a troublesome fact that I had to face. I was weak.

With this defeat, I went to sleep. Feeling mentally unsure of myself and mentally shattered…:wasted:

Day 3

Day 3 was a somber day.

I was feeling a bit better about the previous night. I got up at about 10 and went to watch the tail end of melty finals and play some more mvc3. I actually got close to winning a prize for my play in mvc3, but I choked. Although, I would say I was fairly competent at the game by the time capcom closed up shop.

I was really hype for marvel. I thought that it was an awesome top 8 up until grand finals. Clockwork almost lived the dream…Melty and Tatsunoko also had pretty awesome showings. Those games were mad awesome at high level play. I personally think both of them get too much hate. Tekken and MVc3 were also entertaining. the fact that RyRy won mvc3 made me feel a bit better about him beating me into the ground for an hour the day before. I got a bite to eat while HDR was on, so I cant speak much on it.

Super finals were pretty nice. Nothing EPIC but it was still a good show. The fact that top 4 were from 4 different countries…awesome. I really thought Ricky was going to take Daigo to the second set. His rufus play was amazing, and although both of those characters are complete bullshit (lol), watching both of those guys play for all the marbles (as well as a certain adon player, and two hondas with dreams of victory) was nothing short of inspiring. I realized that half of my battle was won. I had made it pretty far in my pool, and I got my ass exposed by top level players. I now know what I must work on to one day achieve that level of play.

After a long day of gaming and fun, I take a shower and go to sleep.

Day 4

I wake up with a refreshed attitude.

You know how sagat felt in the alpha series after he won/lost to ryu? How he would be like “Fuck it! Next time I see that bitch I am beating his ass! I need to train harder and become stronger!” ? Thats how I felt. It was a positive attitude. That feeling, of looking at an opponent with the eagerness to fight them again after you have trained to become stronger, faster, and smarter. That is a great feeling.

I knew I was weak. However, I knew one day, with hard work, determination, and persistence (hallmarks of my real life persona), I would one day be strong. In game and in reality.

On a whim, since I still had time before my flight, I WALKED from caesar’s palace to the Pinball hall of fame. 4 miles in heat was nothing really :sweat: (im from Louisiana so i was desensitized to it). Anyway, I met P. Gorath, Keits, Kryo, and Valaris there, and played some sweet pinball games. I got back to the hotel grabbed my stuff, and hopped on a plane home.

Reflection

For the first day or two back from EVO, or any major really, I always feel this kind of pseudo-depression. I find it very unfulfilling to come back to such a mundane day to day life after the roller coaster rides that are these fighting game tourneys…

that said, I really had a blast at my second evo. My only regrets are that I didn’t meet MORE people, and that I couldn’t go in 06 like I had planned. My shoutouts: http://shoryuken.com/f8/evo-shout-out-thread-162057/index4.html#post9208427

As an aside, I think next year is going to be very interesting. We are experiencing a very exciting period for the fighting game genre. I only hope everyone goes into this era with open minds. I agree with many others in that it is unhealthy for the community to become “super sf4 Nation,” as the scene could theoretically implode. I hope that in the future, people diversify, and that all games at evo/majors/whatever can know the level of success sf4 does. Who knows what the future holds, but isn’t that part of the fun? I know I am personally going to put my best foot forward in our local scene(s). Something that I would like to see develop, is for there to be a unified “Fighting game community,” as opposed to the “sf4 community,” “capcom community,” the tekken community," etc., etc… The truth is, we all represent the same genre. We all know the thrill of playing high level fighting games, and how it offers a more engaging, smarter, and more enthralling experience than shooters or various other games (with the exception of wow arena and starcraft imo). Above all else, we all know the same stigma/struggle with being classified as an “underground” community. Why consistently divide ourselves? We need to stand together and be aware of who we are as a whole.

Furthermore, I always have a moment at majors, where I can look around and see hundreds, (in this case) thousands of people creating bonds of friendship and rivalry. I see them forging their minds, skills, and relationships. THrough what?
Through a video game. It really is remarkable. It makes me wonder sometimes, is it possible that Fighting games are on a higher level than a typical video game?

In conclusion, I have reached the point of no return. Even as I sit here now, on a 10+ game losing streak on live lol :rofl::sweat:, I can recall my past experiences, reaffirm my desire to become a good player, turn on training mode :rofl: and look forward to the future. The truth is, win or lose, it is all about the fight. It is all about the experience. It is all about the path to become a champion, and the bonds we form with people along the way make that experience even more worth it.

Magus sums it up nicely in this vid from evo 2k9. Listen to it from 2:38 onward. [media=youtube]7Kgg-hHjBFE&playnext_from=TL&videos=8nkt-fZZ4cY[/media]

In 2006, after high school and the hurricane katrina bullshit, I started college. I attended Xavier University of Louisiana’s Pre-Medical Biology program, a rigorous program designed to prepare its students for medical school. I had to deal with a (difficult) school, post-katrina new orleans, and numerous other real-life issues. In order to keep the stress at bay, I dove head-first into the fighting games that I had only casually played up until that point. Somewhere along the way, I became a part of an underground community that few people can understand. Now, as I sit here a recent graduate from my college program, the fighting game community is a part of me, and I am not looking back.

As Ryu says, “The answer lies in the heart of battle.”

As (Cheesy as it is) Exile says, “I gotta keep on moving, I know I’ll be strong.”

Thanks for reading guys. See you next year.

~Jazz


#20

That was a great writeup.