special;;street fighter v;;fighting;;match;;vs;;capcom Kevin "Methodone89" van Dongen

A CLEAN SLATE

By Kevin "Methodone89" van Dongen on January 25, 2016

With the upcoming release of Street Fighter V, Capcom is going to reset the game and even the playing field, so that this new release will be approachable, whether youíre new to the series, or a seasoned veteran. Itís like I have received a blessing from the Hadouken gods!

Before I continue with this article Iíd like to focus your attention on another article I wrote a while back on roughly the same subject; itís called: "From couch hero to ranked zeroĒ, and is a personal tale in which I shared a lot of my history with Street Fighter; the game I love and the frustration I had trying to get back into the game, as well as the community, after being absent from the roster for a few years.

To prepare for the "From couch hero to ranked zeroĒ article, I picked up USFIV on the PS3 and played 100 Ranked matches, it was unbelievably stupid to believe I could come back after being absent for years. I only won 9 out of the 100 matches I played and that wasnít improving my confidence or self-esteem to say the least. I needed to step up my game in order to become relevant in the community I love.


When Ultra Street Fighter IV launched on the Playstation 4, I jumped right in and played even more matches than I had done for the original article. My current number of played Ranked matches is 1126 and Iíve won 417 of them. Itís still not good enough to compete with the best of the best in the games community, but it is one step closer to being a fierce competitor in the future and a whole lot better than the 9 out of 100 matches I won prior to writing "From couch hero to ranked zeroĒ.

Almost a year has passed since I wrote that article and my love for the game and the genre as a whole has grown significantly. Not only did I compete in local tournaments, I also competed in multiple fighting games. I bought a new fightstick and I try to play Street Fighter on a daily base. Having a full-time job and a family to take care of is definitely not helping my journey to become good at Street Fighter again, but I honestly believe that they will be a big part of any future success I might have.

I still have issues with USFIV and one of the key issues is the sheer number of combos and mechanics used in USFIV. To be totally honest, I canít bring myself to learning them because, in my opinion, it would be a total waste of time. "WhyĒ, you ask? Well ever since I returned to Street Fighter I was well aware of the upcoming Street Fighter V and the hype it brought with it. Why invest so much time on combos and mechanics when I could better invest them in the basic understanding of the game as a whole? I invested a lot of time trying to read my opponents, counter them, learning to maintain control of my space and applying footsies where needed. In my opinion, these things are a thousand times more worth "wastingĒ my time on than flashy combos and cancels. Iím not saying I have found the perfect way to play Street Fighter, nor am I saying Iím the best, or even good at it. All Iím saying is that I have found an understanding of the game that works for me. And not just of Street Fighter in particular, but fighting games in general.

I have rediscovered my love for the game and its genre and the Street Fighter V hype is killing me... it really is. Iíve even transferred some of the hype on my 5 year old, who likes to play as Poison and Chun-Li. The hype is real and with every bit of newly released footage, every new image, story or whatever Capcom and the Community throws at me, Iím starting to glow more bright than ever, because my new favorite game is coming and I feel blessed that there are no Ultra combos and no Focus Attacks. And while it may feel like Capcom is going back to basic, unfortunately they are not.


Capcom isnít going back to the system they used in Street Fighter II because, in my honest opinion, they can never go back. The world and the community has changed too much over the years. However, they are taking a step back and are letting the game be played as it should be played. I know a lot of people out there would like to start an argument over this opinion by now, hell I probably would have, but I do actually believe that the way Street Fighter V is being advertised in articles, videos, betas and what not is how the game should be played. USFIV was execution heavy and while that has its own appeal itís also a barrier many of us have to cross, if we can and have the will to do so. With a more basic approach and a game style thatís more focused on knowing your enemy and trying to let them fail miserably, Street Fighter V will (hopefully) become the next positive step in Street Fighter evolution.

Now on to the good part; when Street Fighter V drops all players, yes all of them, they will have to learn the game from scratch. However, keep in mind that high level players will always have a better understanding of the game as a whole. When I came back to Street Fighter, people were playing the game for almost up to 6 years; when somebody enters the community that late in a games lifecycle, theyíre not getting good, theyíre making up for lost time.

Street Fighter V will provide equal ground for every Street Fighter warrior and one can only hope that even some new warriors will find their way to the ring. I truly believe Street Fighter V will become great, maybe even greater than Street Fighter IV is now. With the ever-growing fighting game community rising up to become better and better,weíll get even more interesting and more hyped matches than weíve ever seen before. Matches that arenít decided by a last minute use of an Ultra Combo, but will be decided by a simple human error and the other contender lurking to punish the mistake made.

SFV will give me the opportunity to really start anew with a clean slate. It will create a platform where everybody starts as equals and the matches are decided by how you play and not how good you are at exploiting mechanics. I still believe that USFIV and its previous versions are great and it would be foolish to neglect what they did for the franchise and the community. However, if thereís a Hadouken god, he just did what I was hoping for; he gave me another chance at a long lost dream.


I personally believe that starting anew will be the best thing that could have happened to the Street Fighter franchise; a lot of newcomers are discouraged by the high level of skill displayed by the communityís biggest and baddest. So, resetting the play field will create a place where new and veteran players start as equals, just like most of us had back in 2009 when Street Fighter IV launched. The better players among us will quickly create a gap between them and the mediocre players, but we now have an equal chance at being part of the better half and enjoy the game we love.

I really hope Street Fighter V will give us new champions and make the community shine brighter than ever before. I honestly hope the Street Fighter community will become the biggest gaming community in existence and fighting games will become more relevant and popular than MMOís and MOBAís. I have high hopes for its future and Iím putting an awful lot of my trust into Capcomís hands. I just truly believe they will make Street Fighter bigger and better than ever before!

Street Fighter V will be released next month and I will do my best to compete on a higher level and be even more involved in the community once the game releases. Iím looking forward to meeting some of you online and offline for a nice little beat-down!


available on:

STREETFIGHTER V
Capcom & Dimps
February 16-18, 2016