Fighting with an Arcade stick - Like learning an instrument?


I was wondering if learning to fight with an arcade stick is like learning to play a music instrument. What I find often is that I’m fumbling for the button I want. What I just started last night was assigning my pointing finger to LP/LK, my middle finder to MK/MP, and my ring finger to HP/HK. I’m going to just practice hitting the buttons with each of those fingers and saying to myself which they are as I hit them. Like LP LP LP LP or MP MP MP MP … I did this for 10 minutes at a time on each button. Should something like that help get my muscle memory where it needs to be so I can actually find the buttons and get the moves out I want to get out? Let me know what your thoughts are on my plan. I hope it’s not too early to post as I’m a noob here. Thanks guys and gals!


Also, if I’m on the right track with my thinking… would like taking it to work and doing the same thing at lunch breaks with the stick not even attached to the game be helpful?


SF5 is my first Street Fighter, and is also the first game I’ve ever used a stick for. Now, the stick feels naturally after playing for ~50+ hours. Honestly what helped me learn my stick the best was just practicing in the lab. Practicing specials helped make my inputs more precise, and practicing links helped me slowly find the best spot for my hand where I could comfortably reach all my buttons.

Everyone learns differently! For me it was actual game practice that helped me learn my stick.


But do you use a different finger for each button each time or did it kind of develop into where you do the same thing over and over? Meaning you use the same finger when you want a LP move or a HP move, etc. Thanks for replying!


I kinda consider it like un instrument yes. Not SF as a whole, but the mechanical parts yes.

I do the same thing over and over mostly I think. I don’t really pay attention to it anymore.


I use my pointer and middle finger together to push a single button. When I’m not pushing anything, I rest my button fingers on the MP button.


Start learning double tapping right away.
Will only help you in the long run.


Gootecks recommends hitting buttons with two fingers with the index and middle finger, which is what I’ve been doing.


Learned the basics of an instrument myself, scales, slow sheet reading, integer notation [simple shit the basics is]
They are similar in that you DEDICATE
Time to acclimate to their controls as your muscle memory gradually or quickly gets used to it.

A stick is basically a drumpad with a joystick instead of faders.
Somewhat similar to an akai with a fat pads mod or them midi fighters.


Yes, learning stick is like learning a musical instrument in the sense you’re developing muscle memory. It’s the same for any video game controller, or really anything in life that requires manual dexterity.

Similarly, when you ask which finger to hit what button with: it depends on your hands, do what’s comfortable for you.

The big things here:

  1. training mode
  2. input display on
  3. time

Go pratice


Yes, 100%


Lookin at the tecks video, I realized that mayflash is a ride the gate stick.


Yes, and you can treat learning long combos like learning a piece of music. Write down all the inputs, and practice them slowly, then pick up speed as you go, then finally fine tune the exact timings in training mode.


Also your brain cannot tell the difference between what you do and what you imagine, so if you find ur self in a long boring line just visualize yourself using the stick and that will help alot


Do what feels right for you. Remember this hand positioning won’t hold up if you want to throw, use a v-skill, or activate v-trigger. Also some OS’ require you to press a bunch of buttons together, so you may have to move your hand for them as well.

So while I’d agree that index = lights, middle = mids and ring = heavies this setup shouldn’t be set in stone. Be ready to move your hand around. You never know, it may be easier to hit a heavy with your ring, index or even your pinky just because your hand was in a position where that was just easier to do after the previous move you just finished inputted. In fact, I’d say it is better to learn the locations of the buttons rather than assigning a finger to a certain button press, but again always default to what feels comfortable to you. There are no wrong ways to play; just some ways may require a bit more work to pull off.