I’ve created this thread in order for people to share how they’ve come to be fighting game players and enthusiasts, at least enough so to the point where they’d come to SRK…
Now, for myself:
My first memories of playing a fighting game come from Street Fighter II: Special Champion Edition on the Sega Genesis, when I was probably around 6 or 7. I played mostly against my older sister, who I beat by using M.Bison’s slide over and over, since neither of us knew how to block low. Besides those early forays into the genre as a child, I never really played FGs all that often, since I didn’t own any of the newer consoles for a long period, and arcades were all too uncommon encounters.
Still, I enjoyed playing fighting games when I got the chance, such as mashing on the occasional Soul Calibur or MvC1 machines randomly distributed throughout the area laundromats and malls. Eventually, near the beginning of my high school years I got a PS2, and though a likely majority of that console’s time was likely spent on RPGs, fighting games got quite a decent share of time. The two in the small collection were Capcom vs SNK 2, and Guilty Gear XX. Despite not really having anyone to play with, I devoted many hours to both games finally making sense of the notations shown on the command list, and working on my ability to confirm and execute the simple BnBs I could find on GameFAQs. CvS2 was also when I first learned how to use a charge character, namely Guile. (My favorite Guilty Gear character is Bridget, btw.)
After I graduated high school was about the time news and excitement for Street Fighter IV was drumming up. I’d been to Chinatown Fair a few times, but never really went to arcades due to being broke more or less 99% of the time. When CTF got their SFIV cabinets, I went down to Chinatown to check out the new game. I played a match using Guile against an out-of-towner’s Ken, who admitted he was just spinning the stick in circles and mashing buttons, yet really wanted to see the new Street Fighter. He came from quite a long ways away, if I remember correctly. I also remember managing to hit him with Guile’s Flash Explosion, a motion that I still can’t perform consistently to this day.
Then, my time with fighting games came to a freeze when I joined the military. It was only when I was stationed in a base unit in Okinawa did I finally have a chance to settle down a bit again (and buy a PS3.) I eagerly awaited the release of Super Street Fighter IV, and bought it as soon as it came out, incidentally breaking a few orders in order to get myself to the exchange that carried it as quickly as possible. I’ve likely put several hundred hours into SSF4, with the majority of my play time taken up by Guile, who has always been one of my favorite SF characters, and whose play style came naturally to me. One thing that I found odd at the initial outset of my online play, was that for the first 100 or so matches, I found myself to be strangely good for someone with practically no experience playing other players. I began my online play with a 10+ game win-streak. Eventually, I settled into the 1500~ PP range of ranked, until sometime later when I then settled into the 2300-2500~ PP range, with a B+ Guile of around 5000 BP. For the entirety of this time I could only play against Japanese online players, which SF4’s online search does not make easy to find. It was like looking for a needle in a haystack sometimes. The last time I checked my SSF4 record, I think I had somewhere around a 57% ranked win percentage.
Then came the game that would make me stop playing Street Fighter 4 almost entirely, Marvel vs Capcom 3. Suffice to say, where in SSF4 I found myself to be a rather average player, in MvC3 I was most definitely a big fish in a small pond. I initially started that game with a desire to use Morrigan and Hsien-Ko, but they were both eventually traded out for my mains for that game, Doctor Doom and Dormammu, with the Maytag Mayor backing them up. Me and two others would play MvC3 for up to 100 matches in a session, despite that fact that sometimes I would beat them by a 50:1 ratio when I eventually got my main team together. Online was largely the same, though my playing experience was limited more or less entirely to player lobbies due to ranked matches being unbearable due to lag. I believe my W/L ratio of total online matches was something around 1000:130. The game also garnered me the majority of the hate mail that resides in my PS3s inbox.
When UMvC3 came out, I took a vacation. Literally, I went back to the States for about a month. When I returned, my only two sources of “competition” were both gone. As for now, I recently picked up KOF XIII, and am enjoying it greatly playing against my roommate, who’s not so bad at FGs himself.
How about the rest of you?