Even though points are not nearly an exact gauge of skill (nothing is), if you have a good connection ranked mode is still valuable, and players like Joz who climb to the top still deserve respect. I’m pretty tired of people criticizing and blowing off the points system, OF COURSE it’s not a perfect gauge of skill, but what can be? It’s about as good as it can be made.
My favorite thing about ranked mode is that it lets me find other good 10,000-20,000BP players very fast, and usually those players are more than happy to play several ranked games in a row. Even at big offline events like the Northeast Championship XI, and local tournies where strong players like Dr. Chaos and Josh Wong show up, the majority of players seem less skilled than the people with around 15,000+BP / 3500+PP. I went strait from being an online warrior to being able to beat some serious offline players, and all of the online practice payed off in my case. Playing for points helped me learn to stay calm, smart, and patient in fights where “something is on the line”. I don’t jack up my points either: if I find someone who can always beat me, I have no problem fighting them 15 times in ranked because I’d rather lose points now than money later.
Offline, I try and participate in as many relatively local tournaments as I can, but in between them all I have is online for about 2 weeks strait, and so I sometimes still do online tourneys and moneys matches in those weeks, because I enjoy them. In the uncommon case that I have to fight in significant lag, I know how to do that, and having that skill even payed off offline when I had to fight on a laggy display. It kind of teaches you how to fight things when you have a late reaction, and you pick up on how to demolish someone who can’t react fast enough. You learn most aspects of all of the matchups, and you pick up some Jedi-esque yomi. Yeah, its not Street Fighter BUSHIDO, but BUSHIDO is only for people who want to fight a certain way. I’m ready to fight by any circumstance.