How to combat tilt?


For those of you who don’t know I just copied a definition from google. “Tilt is a poker term for a state of mental or emotional confusion or frustration in which a player adopts a less than optimal strategy, usually resulting in the player becoming over-aggressive.”. I know it’s a poker term but does any body else get it from video games: especially competitive ones but me? I’ve seen it tossed arround here and other forums loosely but I don’t know if anybody else ever feels it. Sometimes I get it whenever I get up against a character I just can’t stand (Necalli, Ryu and Nash) or when I lose a match that I very well should have won. Sometimes I just want to throw down my controller and never touch the game again, but of course I never do because I’m not a baby. When this start I just start to lose over and over and over again, I guess that’s where the line " in which a player adopts a less than optimal strategy" comes from. I used to get pissed off over League of Legends but that was mostly from teammates verbally abusing me whenever I did bad (thank god I learned what a mute button was). Does anybody else ever feel the way I do sometimes?

How do I deal with being salty as hell?

I think generally whenever you play a competitive game, it’s pretty natural to get frustrated and be thrown off your game if you lose a game you felt you should have won. Correct me if im wrong, but in the FGC the common term for this is “salty”, but that can refer to being upset even if you should have lost, or being upset when losing to a character you feel is “cheap”. It can be used a variety of ways really.

To answer your question, it’s always hard to control your initial reaction of frustration when you lose a match. But if you catch yourself before it spirals beyond the point of no return, you can combat it. You can tell yourself that “tilting” will never result in better play, and instead look at losing as a way to learn to become better. Why did you lose? What attacks did you struggle with? Was he zoning you too well? Were you dropping combos? When you catch yourself and ask yourself these questions, it can empower you to do better the second time around as opposed to seeing red and giving in to your frustration.


I could get behind that if it wasn’t for the fact that usually it’s times where I lose over and over and over and over again, like right now. Just dropped 600 LP so naturally I’m pretty upset. It’s times like these where I don’t know what to do


This is usually where a second, preferably peaceful, hobby comes in handy. For example, I used to do speed-cubing before I got into fighting games, so when Street Fighter has me on edge, I just sit down with a cube and practice some solves, or I hop over to Crunchyroll/Netflix watch a show for about an hour before going back into the mix.

It’s definitely not just you, though. Salt is something we all have to get over at some point. Some of us are better at managing our anger issues than others, but almost everyone at the early stage of their career has the urge to drop the game after a horrible day/week.

My recommendation is to stop playing the game for 2-3 days. Let your mind and body cool down, and when you come back, everything will feel normal. If you’re feeling ballsy, watch some replays of yourself after this reset and see where everything went wrong. Did you not anti-air enough? Did you let your opponent get away with a bunch of unsafe things? Etc.


Do other games count? I still need to get around to finishing Dark Souls III and Metal Gear Solid V so I don’t know if that counts. If that doesn’t I also play guitar but unfortunately i’m in a house full of sleeping people that I don’t want to wake up. I don’t have a whole lot of hobbies tbh


I think other games would count, but they’d have to be non-competitive or relaxing in general. I wouldn’t play Dark Souls III because more than likely you’re gonna die a lot and if you’re already salty you probably will keep tilting which will add to more frustration.


i usually take a breather, and read some comics


The term “on-tilt” is common in the FGC and you can usually tell when a player is on-tilt when they make a lot of aggressive mistakes or press too many buttons while being pressured. This is usually from some form of tunnel-vision that leaves you so fixated on certain things (I hate this move/tactic/character/player etc) that it isn’t allowing you pay attention to other important aspects of the match (because you only want to beat what’s pissing you off).

If you can find a way to calm down quickly through a break or something, good, but I’m actually going to suggest trying to own it a little bit and use that extra-aggression to your advantage if you can. It’s not always a bad thing… you might catch onto some tendencies or fear from your opponents, but I will say that the less knowledge you have overall, the more prone you are to making stupid mistakes when you’re angry (the level or your opponent will determine how often those get exploited).

If you don’t overcome whatever you’re losing to while you’re playing though, take it STRAIGHT to the training room, research the frame data and whatnot (review your matches if you can) and make sure you find out EVERY counter to the tactics you can think of, so you will be ready for it as much as possible the next time you play. I think being upset about it motivates you to focus more on it, so it’s the best time to learn counters and alternate scenarios imo… when you can isolate it in the training room.
Build on this to the point where you have a full arsenal of your own to deal with the the things that will potentially set you off and soon you’ll start to notice they don’t make you as mad anymore because you’ve learned how to beat it before the opponent even gets started.


My advice is similar to advice I’d give players on League of Legends (though to this extent it’s going to be a little different since you’re playing a game that doesn’t take 40 minutes to complete): If you lose a certain amount of matches or points, just don’t play anymore ranked for that day. Go to normal, unranked games (casual games, survival, training mode, etc.) and play there, or don’t play at all. That way, you can practice up to get in the groove again, or you can just calm down and unwind with some other activity to take your mind off of junk.

I personally smoke at least a bowl before I play ranked, mainly because it helps keep me relaxed even during losses and I can focus on actually playing and not get distracted by constant facebook/skype notifications. You don’t have to use a substance but if you want to then have at it.


Take a break. 2 days or so usually does it for me when im full tilt and my points are dwindling due to me playing poorly. I dont practice or anything during that time, if i want to game ill play another non fighting game. I might watch match videos from my characters online or something if i really want to do something fighting gm related but for the most part i tune them out. Then after ive had a couple days away from the game im usually more refreshed and sharper.




Sometimes it can be just as simple as, too much training or too much time put into it. You can wear yourself out by too much training because your brain can’t process anymore since you’ve already had a good session. And that’s normal, even athletes experience that. If it’s not too much training it just not doing well at matches, then it could be one of the following:

  1. Too much time spent playing in one session and you need to chill from it.

  2. You just need to chill from the game for a bit, due to playing it a lot consecutively

  3. It could be that you’re realizing what you’ve done wrong in the match, and as I mentioned, that it could be just too much information processing and you need to rest so everything can be processed.


Whatever you do don’t be like me, ostracize your friends because you can’t beat them in a video game


I just try to not let it get to me. Once I reach the point of just mashing buttons, doing random shit and dropping combos, I stop. A lot of things are just you reacting based on muscle memory, and if you’ve been doing unsafe and/or stupid shit because you’ve gotten away with it, maybe you need to take an hour or two in training mode to just learn to do something else instead before your next session. I know that I learned a lot of bad habits from playing arcade mode and needed to relearn what to do in actual matches.

Besides that, just try to have fun. I know it’s harder than it sounds and that frustration will still get the better of you, but you really need to detach yourself from this whole win/lose mentality. I absolutely loathe facing Mika and will get extremely salty about her “brainless 50/50 play” when she gets one single combo in after I’ve had a round of outplaying her which leads to corner, stun and eventually my loss, but I try to tell myself that even when I get bodied I learn what not to do, and that there are worse things than losing at video games. If nothing else, I know I take enjoyment out of the mental exercise of trying to come up with strategies or analyzing ideas. Just find out what you like about fighting games and try to focus on that whether you win or lose.