SSF4 is coming out pretty soon, so this is a perfect time to post this.
There has been a real problem in this community lately, which on the long run can?t do anything but affect it, and this problem cannot be described as anything but
?Top Player Worship?
Don?t get me wrong, the purpose of this article isn?t to disrespect top players or anything like that. Top players are really smart people who deserve respect. Now with that said a lot of people are deforming this respect and turning it into a senseless and mediocre mindset that can only produce a senseless and mediocre player.
I?m talking about players who see something and instead of analyzing the situation; they just say ?He?s Justin Wong, that?s how he did it? or ?Daigo made a psychic DP? or players who won?t even dare to think that they have the ability to beat JWong or Daigo, and whenever they face a top player in a tourney, they loose to themselves before the match even starts.
This is a long read. I always thought it would have been better to illustrate this on a video, but I?m not good at making videos, so I decided to write it.
Hope you enjoy it
Top Player Mentality (TPM)
I want to be clear on something.
Mentality is something that?s completely subjective. The main purpose of this thread is to help you understand that you need to develop a mindset by yourself.
If by the end of this article you feel that now you?re going to follow this mindset instead of the one you currently have, then you didn?t understand anything at all.
Let?s get this started
TPM Tip #1 ? Follow the cause, not the messenger**
This is the #1 mistake that most new players do. When somebody sees a top player doing something that he/she feels identified with, 99% of the time, people direct their respect to the player himself instead of the play style he?s using.
You have to realize that you are you and you will never be like Daigo or Alex Valle, you can only be you, Daigo and Alex Valle will never be you either.
This means that what you?re feeling is identification with this play style, not the player.
If you direct your respect to the player, then you?re only going to be as good as that player is.
I met Combofiend back in 2004 when I was a beginner MvC2 player. I played team Combofiend at the time, and when I met him it was really exiting for me.
A couple of years later (2007) I saw Combofiend again at EVO and we were talking about different stuff. He asked me ?So you still play my team??? I answered yes and he seemed a little surprised about it. I asked him why and he answered
?I figured you would have quitted by now since I haven?t won any Marvel tourneys lately (by this time Combofiend was more focused on CvS2)?
It?s sad to say, but in reality, a lot of people did stop using this team cause of that.
If you realize that you feel identified with the play style rather than the player, that?s a more real and responsible approach to become a serious player.
In other words, you don?t want to be in a position where you follow Daigo for example, you want to be in a position where you and Daigo follow the same thing, and if Daigo starts falling apart, that won?t affect you at all.
** TPM Tip #2 ? Skill level is a Subjective thing**
This can sound pretty obvious for some people, but it is in fact something that people tend to forget all the time (this happens a lot in tournaments).
There?s no way to measure your skill level.
When a match starts, you and your opponent have the same exact chance of winning and losing, even if you?re playing against someone with more experience than you.
This is really hard for people to accept since they can?t even permit themselves to consider that they can beat players like Alex Valle or JWong.
I know that you can come up with thousands of reasons of why the odds are against you if you play against Daigo, but remember that like you, he has to figure you out as well.
?Imagination is more important than knowledge? ? Albert Einstein
I know that a lot of players are gonna freak out after reading this but…
if you play against Justin Wong in a tournament
All of his tournament titles DON’T MEAN ANYTHING
We live here and now, and right here and right now, we both have the same life bar amount left.
TPM Tip #3 ? Know your priorities**
How many times have you lost a match cause you spent the entire round trying to land that flashy combo, or do that tactic you saw???
a lot right???
You have to be aware that your priority is to make sure that your opponent?s life bar reaches zero. Whenever you learn to do something, be aware that this is a tool for you to use, it isn?t a tactic that?s supposed to be the priority of the match.
You have to learn not only how to execute this new combo you just learned, but you also have to understand what this is useful for.
If you learn something and you don?t know why it?s good to know it, then you?re just wasting your time.
Sad to say, but most players imitate something and then they run to perform it against somebody like a robot, with no real knowledge of why, and this may work, but on the long run, a smart player will easily detect that you don?t know how to use it, and he will make you pay for it.
Make this tactics your own, understand how it works completely.
Dont be lazy and just call a combo “The Daigo Special”
TPM Tip #4 ? Do everything with a reason, don?t follow a script**
?Your opponent is just as good as you let him be? ? Alex Valle
Have you ever realized that there are a lot of things we do on a match that we didn?t really have to do. That?s because lots of players are really impulsive, and they freak out when something that they?re not familiar with happens.
You have to get the habit of questioning everything you see, understand why and go from there. Only a fool uses something cause they think that if a top player does it then it must be right. You CAN disagree with a top player?s method.
?Don?t do something cause you think its good if it hits, do something cause you think it will hit? ? Ohnuki
What Nuki means is that if you understand something, then go for it, don?t hesitate, go for the hit. Trust yourself; trust what you?ve been observing.
You?re not always gonna be right on what you think is gonna happen, but I can assure you that this habit creates champions since you will actually train your mind into reading your opponent as you look for reasons to do something.
Even if you don?t land every single hit, the habit of doing everything with a reason will improve your skills a LOT.
**TPM Tip #5 ? There?s not a real reason to be nervous
If you learn to accept that you have the same chance to win that your opponent has. You can easily realize that there?s no reason to be nervous, even if a big crowd is watching, or if you?re on a major tourney.
There?s nothing set in stone in a discipline like this.
I know you can come up with tons of reasons to feel nervous in a tournament like EVO, but when you think about it, you have the same amount of reasons to be exited, so why do you only pay attention to the reasons to feel nervous???
Top players realize that there?s no reason to be exited or nervous, that?s why you usually see them with a straight emotionless gesture [media=youtube]DHi8MUVopVI#t=4m55s"[/media]
TPM Tip #6 ? Keep in mind the way you condition your opponent
Have you seen [media=youtube]_HuUJBqDbZ8#t=4m45s"[/media]???
Sad to say, but most people only remember those 10 seconds from that video
Most mediocre players would just assume this is a psychic DP, when in reality, Daigo spent most of the match conditioning Iyo for this.
I won?t get into much detail, look at the video and you will realize that in reality, Daigo was reducing his risk rather than taking a big risk. Daigo fanboys usually tend to ignore all the dps that daigo whiffed before landing that one.
I hope this article is helpful to yall.
Lets stop this top player worship and lets level up so we can be a community of professionals.
This hobby is better than you think.
If you develop the skills to be organized and calm with what you’re doing while keeping an open mind, you will see that these skills can apply to real life as well.