Monday, March 28, 2011

Reversal options

Reversals on a scale of 1 – 5 based on damage, invincibility and how safe it is:

· 5: Ryu, Seth, Sagat, Cammy, Rufus, Fei Long, Evil ryu…invincible, safe and damage potential

· 4: Honda, Akuma, Ken, Bison, Balrog, T.Hawk, Adon, Viper… safe and good damage potential

· 3: Ibuki, Gen, Dan, Dee Jay, Guy, Blanka, Dudley, Yun…less safety than above character’s

· 2: Sakura, Juri, Chun, Dhalsim, Abel, Cody, Guile, Rose…unsafe and little gain if successful

· 1: Makoto, Gouken, Hakan, Yang, Fuerte, Vega…very weak options

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Back in business! Super SF4 Matchups

After a long hiatus, I figured that I would revive this blog and start writing SF thoughts here. First up on the agenda are my match up charts. There are tons of matchups to learn and I figured that I would try to record my current experience with matchups in regards to "comfort." There are matches where I'm extremely comfortable in, match ups where I just have no idea what to do, matches I'm still learning...the bar of comfort can vary greatly. Here's what my current chart looks like:


- Extremely comfortable...I'm gonna win =P. Unless I did something overly stupid or you showed me something I've never seen before, I'm not losing: Rose, Cody, Dudley, Blanka, Makoto, Sakura, Zangief (7)

- Comfortable but still learning...You might get me even when I'm on point, but you're going to have to be pretty good to get me because I'm pretty comfortable with these match ups: Dhalsim, Balrog, Honda, Chun Li, Ibuki, Juri, Ken, Seth, Vega, Ryu (10)

- Not exactly where I want to be yet...I've built good match up analysis but I need more exposure to figure out what I need to do to win against this set: Abel, Akuma, Cammy, Fei Long, Guile, Bison, Rufus, Sagat, Adon (9)

- Uncomfortable and ignorant...If you're even slightly decent with them you might get me because I haven't built a very strong game plan yet: Fuerte, Dee Jay, Gouken, Guy, T.Hawk (5)

- Undecided...I haven't fought these guys enough to make a strong game plan: Viper, Dan, Gen, Hakan, Sakura (5)

The "not exactly where I want to be yet" is the most interesting category to me as I feel as if I'm having a hard time learning these matchups because of how good they are (high on tier list to my standard)...Akuma being the only exception.

Hopefully I can come back to this in the future and write how I feel then.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Officially moved to

First and foremost, I'd like to apologize for not keeping up to date with this blog. I've been currently working a lot on my website (geared towards fighting games) a lot lately. I've been writing all my strategy articles over there at

I just wrote a large article recently concerning tournament mentality. It goes in depth about how composure and confidence can affect how you perform in a tournament setting compared to just playing casually with friends. I'd definitely encourage people to check it out if they get the time! Just head over to the site and click on the "strategy" category on the navigation bar.

I've got a lot of plans to come out with other tutorial videos and other strategy articles as well. Currently I'm working on a "plinking" tutorial that I'll be coming out with next week. I'll also be posting up my Ryu video tutorials over there as well as an Option Select tutorial as well.

But anyways, if your trying to keep up with me, head over to!

- Mickey D'

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Anti Airs in depth

In my last post I made it a pretty big impression that I wanted to learn how to anti air better. While playing today, a thought finally dawned on me on how I can exactly strengthen my anti air game. I realized that there were specific times that my opponent was jumping in on me. I even mentioned this in the post yesterday...I seem to have troubles anti air'ing after throwing a fireball and also during poking battles (using's and hadou's from closer ranges). Basically I'm finding it hard to control the air AND ground both at the same time. I started looking at anti air's a bit more in depth, and here's what I came up with...
There are 3 different types of anti airs when using Ryu. I'm not talking about different anti air types as far as HOW you can anti air, but instead I'm talking about situations WHEN you anti air...there are 3 of them:

- Idle anti air: this is the easiest to hit as your just waiting for your opponent to jump in on you. Not only are you waiting for the jump, but your expecting the jump, so your looking for the anti air and are prepared to bust it out when you need to. In this situation, no pokes are being thrown out or anything (thus being idle). There are no distractions from the anti air...basically during t
hese "idle anti airs" your ONLY focusing on air control...not on ground control.

- Blocking anti air: This situation is kinda happens when your opponent has momentum over you, putting you in a defensive mindset. The problem is that the opponent feeds off of this, sees that your clamming up, then BAM jump in city. For me
personally, I find myself walking back (to distance myself from my opponent) and getting jumped in turn giving them free momentum, putting me in a sticky position. It's hard to go from the motion of back (block), to forward (for the shoryuken motion) in time to catch the opponent's jump in. All this is still a tough situation to anti air your opponent, and it's something key to work at in order to have a great all around anti air game.

- Ground game anti air: This situation is MUCH different then an idle anti air or a blocking anti air. In this situation, Ryu's using attacks like's and fireballs in order to compete with ground zoning. This makes anti air'ing VERY difficult as it's hard to focus on both air AND ground control. A lot of times, I find myself sticking out a, and BAM my opponent is soaring in the air coming at me with a jumping attack. Now in about 9 times out of 10, I'm ALWAYS able to block, however the point is that I've given my opponent an opening and free momentum that he really didn't earn. Secondarily there's a saying that I try to live by which is "If you could block a jump in, you could have anti air'ed it." All in all, the point of the matter is that I'm giving away an opening when I could have stopped it...and had I better anti air skill, I'd be able to stop this situation from happening.

I would say that against a good player anti air situations look a bit like this: Idle anti airs = 10%, blocking anti airs = 20%, Ground game anti airs = 70%. The key to succesfully anti airing while playing the ground game, is to ALWAYS be on the look out for jump in's PERIOD. Don't limit yourself to only look for jump in's during idle stances. Instead realize the possibility that the opponent could jump in during the footsy/spacing battle, or while they're applying pressure. Hopefully this shines a bit of light on the different types of anti airs, and hopefully I can start strengthen'ing my anti air game after realizing all of this!

- Mickey D'

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

More things to work on...

I went to a tournament over the weekend and was a bit disappointed with my placement. I placed 5th out of the 21 participants. I've been playing a whole lot, and I wanted to use the tournament as a test to my hard work and practice. I was having an off day to say the least. I was really sick and battling head aches and breathing issues all day. I also played on my lap where I was sitting on a goofy chair that kinda angles downwards...angling my STICK downwards. Basically sitting in a weird position made inputs weird on my stick...additionally starting in the losers bracket didn't help to much either. All excuses aside I managed to take 5th place, losing to Cole my first match (hence why I say started in losers bracket) then to Bokkin later in the tournament.

When the videos came out, I was able to witness how I played, and I must say I was pretty disappointed. Missed combo's, terrible zoning, uncalculated decisions....I was just off my game and I look like an amateur to say the least. After witnessing the monstrosity that I call my play style, I could see I clearly needed more work. So with that, here's the list of things I'd like to start working on and start using more often:

- Throw hadouken's in 2 instances...outside of jump in range OR during footsie situations.

- Use ex hadouken a bit more often in order to reset momentum.

- Anti air, anti air ANTI AIR (See picture for when to anti air)!!!!! Use s.hp anti air more often in conjunction with shoryu's. Most importantly shoryuken's OUT of pokes! This is pretty crucial...I find myself 9 times out of 10 getting jumped in on during a footsie battle ('s or hadou's). By uppercutt'ing out of's and hadou's, I'll tighten up anti air'ing quite a bit.

- Stop jumping in the CORNER! Quit thinking your going to get some fancy crossup! Keep your opponent in the corner and PLAY SMART! Why would you intentionally put yourself in the corner if it wasn't an amazing mixup?! Play smart and stop throwing away great positioning!

- Counter jab and throw attempts with ex tatsu. This is something new, but I want to start delving into getting counter hits off of ex tatsu's.

Aright...lets get to work

- Mickey D'

Thursday, September 24, 2009

"That was very calculated!"

The ability to play "calculated" is something that takes a LOT of time to get a good grasp on. I see a lot of players lose to brash decisions that weren't calculated out. So many players play without thought, and instead of thinking, they just do things unknowingly without calculation or thought put into their attacks. I personally believe that playing "calculated" means...just playing smart. It's not like you have to know every counter in the book to play smart. All in all, playing calculated at it's core, is the ability to analyze the risk/reward aspect of situations. It can be as simple as "should I throw a fireball right now, or not." I've heard from so many players that they're "always getting jumped in on" when they throw fireballs. This is a result of not throwing fireballs smart. The player didn't calculate the risks of throwing the fireball, and they OBVIOUSLY didn't calculate the rewards of throwing the fireball either. By understanding the risk/reward factor, you play knowing all the possibilities of what your opponent has as well as what YOU have.

Here's a quick situation/example: Say that your up one round against a Sagat. Both health bars are on their last legs and can only withstand one hit. Sagat is throwing tiger shots from a distance keeping you on the other side of the screen. Eventually you manage to get a tiny bit of distance covered, and you can see that if you jump in you'll be able to reach a hit. While this thought occurs, Sagat continues throwing his shots, trying to push you back and make you eat some chip damage. With you being up one round, the possibility to land ONE hit to win the entire match is something to be appreciated with much value. Basically, if Sagat throws another shot, you can make one simple jump, and end the match making you the victor. At the same time, if Sagat thinks your going to jump, he's going to be ready for the anti air, making HIM the victor. So what to do?

By quickly analyzing the situation at hand, you begin understanding the risk to reward factor that comes with the given situation. What can you gain? What will you lose? If the gain is higher then the loss, then 9 times out of 10 I would say that it's worth it to go for the riskier option. In the situation above, I personally would play risky if I felt as if the Sagat didn't respect my option to win with one jump. I'm up one round, if I get the jump in attack, I'll win the match. And if it doesn't go my way...the worst thing that happens is that I play out the next round. In a way I see it as risking the opportunity to take the win, however even if you lose, you still have another round to play out.

From an outsider looking in, many spectators would say that the jump in would be something of impatience or stupidity. However the fact of the matter is that I look at the jump as being very calculated. The player obviously thought out the risks and rewards that came with the situation, so how can the jump be considered dumb? This is what is known as playing calculated.

So if you ever find yourself attacking head on without much thought put into the actual sequence of attacks...start thinking about the risks and rewards that come with the situation. Start analyzing attacks from your opponent, as well as your own attacks...start playing with thought instead of just attacking blindly.

- Mickey D'

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Training log

I'm going to be participating in some major tournaments coming up, and I really want to up my game in order to do well in them. Daigo said he played 5 hours a day in order to train for Evo...Justin says he plays 8 hours a day...It's obvious that it takes dedication and time in order to be looked at as one of the best. My personal goal is to play about 2 to 3 hours a day, though I want to play more, work and real life take in priority over SF.

With practicing more, I also decided to couple it up with having a "training log" where I record everything that I've learned from matches and such. I personally only play player matches as I can actually get a complete set in with the person (rather then in championship mode where I only get 1 game). After the session with the person I write about who I played (character), how I tried to win the match, what I learned from the match itself, as well as the estimated time of the session (I want to figure out how many hours a day I can play). The goal is to be able to take something away from EVERY session. I was talking to my buddy and brought up that Daigo had trained 5 hours a buddy brought up a good point. He said that though Daigo was playing for 5 hours a day, he also played great competition, and that he most likely took something from each session EVERY session.

I'm not sure how long I'm going to have this log, but I'll try to record every time I play at home. Obviously I'll take breaks, or have sessions at people's houses, but I'll still record what I learned at other "in person" sessions. It's important to consistently update the log. Without consistency, I won't put myself into the habit.

So that's primarily the get myself in the habit of trying to take something away from every match/session. By doing this, I'll be able to learn the most from my sessions even though I don't have as much time as the others. I personally suggest that if you feel that you are in a rutt or plateau, you should look into holding a training log as well, as it might help you understand how to better learn from matches.

- Mickey D'