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Found 38 results

  1. Hey everybody! Is there any interest in a fantasy football league for vVv community members? We could do paid or free. If you are interested, post here with what requests you might have for the league. Paid or free? What site? How many team? Special requests (Smaller bench, "Vampire" mode, etc.)? Let me know! I would be super excited to do this. Edit: Running count of players for my sanity: 4
  2. It's ADL time again! We're excited to announce that Season 8 starts February 19th and we will be playing every Sunday and Friday at 9pm EST (6pm PST). Once again, we've made some changes to this season but I think this will make everyone much happier! Let's just say that the theme of this season is SIMPLE!... literally. Things were just getting too complicated for everyone involved and it was sometimes hard to understand what was happening and why. Now everything will be easier for everyone! Jump past the Quick Info to get the summary of the changes!! How the Amateur Draft League works (read if you're new!): Show up in TeamSpeak a little before 9pm EST on Sunday or Friday (about 10-15 minutes works). Once in TeamSpeak, right click your name, click "Change Description", enter your Summoner Name, Solo Q Rank, and the Top 3 positions that you would like to play (or a position you absolutely cannot play), then "OK". You will move into the channel that correlates with your current Solo Q rank under Skill Sorting Hat (if you're currently unranked, go based off of what you were last season). The highest ranked players that show up that night are deemed team captain for THAT NIGHT ONLY. Team Captains will begin drafting their team out of the remaining players (dodge-ball style picking, pick order is under rules). People who are picked will be automatically moved into their team's channel. Once teams are drafted, you will play a total of TWO GAMES. After a game, the winners of the match will move into the same channel as the opposing team for a feedback session. Each game is against a DIFFERENT TEAM. Once you're done with BOTH games and your feedback sessions, you're welcome to leave, start inhouses, find someone to Duo Q with, etc. You can attend any night you want; you're not required to follow any type of schedule. If you show up to play, you must play both of your games. All you have to do to play is show up, you don't have to sign up anywhere or do anything beforehand. You must be level 30 and have at least 16 champions (NA only). There is no minimum Solo Q rank requirement. Have questions? Hit up vVv Medusa or vVv Organicbear! Quick Info: TeamSpeak Server: ts65.gameservers.com:9222 (NO PASSWORD) Click Here to Learn How to set up TeamSpeak Start Time: 9 PM EST/6 PM PST every Friday and Sunday Changes based on your suggestions: Scoring system moved from a complex ELO system to a simplified Win-Percentage-based system. One of the things you guys asked for was for us to simplify the scoring system. The ELO system was confusing and made it so it was difficult to understand what was happening with your scores since everything was calculated behind the scenes. As a result, this season we'll be moving back to a spreadsheet system and simplifying the scoring system to Win/Loss percentage. Your score will be displayed in a simple google docs spreadsheet so that you can look it up easily and see all the math involved in calculating your score. Adding an attendance-based bonus to remove the "hidden penalty" of showing up more often and having a lower win rate than someone who shows up a few times and has a win streak Additionally, you guys said that you didn't like that someone could come in at the end of the season and get a lucky 8-2 streak and end up placing higher than people who were showing up the majority of the season and doing relatively well. We agree that this is something that should be addressed, and although it's highly unlikely for someone to go on an 8-2 streak based on luck alone, we are adding a bonus multiplier to help those who show up to more games throughout the season. This will remove the unintended penalty for those showing up to more nights and trending toward a 50% winrate and prevent someone from showing up and doing well late in the season to sweep an easy victory, unless it's truly deserved. If you DO manage to go 8-2, you will still end the season with a relatively high win rate, but those who attend more nights and manage to perform at an above average level will still end up with a greater score. We will no longer be having a "Finals Night" to determine our winners; the winners of the ADL season will be determined by the end of the season Win/Loss Percentage after the attendance bonus is factored in. Since we no longer have ADL ELO, we will no longer have the Champion/Challenger Tiers. If we have 40+ people on a night, we will have the highest ranked players do a separate draft from the lower ranked players. This will make drafting go faster as well as help with the "my lane opponent is diamond while I'm in silver" problem. The 20 highest ranked players will be moved into Group A while the other 20 players will be in Group B then drafting will resume as normal. We will have 3 groups if we have 81-120 players. So the maximum a group will ever hold is 40 people. Always be sure to give vVv Organicbear or vVv Medusa any feedback you have! We can always make things better or easier, we just need to be informed that something needs changing! A link to our profiles containing our contact information are at the bottom of this post. Feel free to contact us at any time in any way that is most convenient for you (including chatting on TeamSpeak). How to Participate: Literally all you have to do is show up! Get into our TeamSpeak BEFORE 9pm EST (10-15 minutes), go into the channel Amateur Draft League, then wait for further instruction! NOTE: Anyone can play, regardless of Solo Q rank, as long as you're Level 30 and have at least 16 champions to participate in Custom Tournament Draft. Official ADL Rules: Please take the time to read and familiarize yourself with the rules! You are expected to know the rules before you join TeamSpeak and participate!!! Are you excited about the beginning of Season 8? Should we have made any other changes? Be sure to communicate with us!! If you have questions, concerns, comments, or suggestions, contact Organicbear or Medusa and we'll be more than happy to help you <3 (srsly, with anything at all... except math). See you on February 19th at 9pm EST (6pm PST) for the Amateur Draft League!! ADL Staff: vVv Organicbear vVv Medusa
  3. vVv Gaming is proud to present our newest competitive game nights for Rocket League! These game nights will allow Teams and individual Rocketeers to bring their A game and level up their gaming skills in three unique events each week! Whether the goal is to improve teamwork, find suitable opponents, or just acquire valuable feedback on how to improve one’s gameplay, these events will accomplish just that! All of the events below will lead to a Season Finale where the best players and teams from the entire season will be allowed to participate! Each season will last 8 weeks (subject to change based on the feedback received in season 1). Players and Teams with highest scores will be invited to the two final tournaments. In order to create an environment that Rocketeers wish to be part of, an environment that encourages gamers to be competitive, to improve, and help others grow, we have made the first season a “test run”. What this means is that for the first season finale we will not be providing prizes to the winners. We hope that the first season will give us enough time to gather feedback from the participants in order to ensure quality of the event. Dependant on the success of the event, prizes will be introduced at a later time. Season 1 starts on Tuesday November 3rd. Supersonic Draft Supersonic Showdown Supersonic Shuffle Playing Games and Reporting Results: A tournament bracket will be created and can be accessed via http://www.vvv-gaming.com/RLBracket. (Note this link will take you to an external website that we use for hosting brackets and also this link will be kept up to date with the current active event). For all events above, the Admin will announce via TeamSpeak when the event has started. Once this happens you should contact the opposing team and host a private game among yourselves and play your best ouf of three matches. After you complete playing your match, one player from your team needs to report your score to the Admin. To keep things clean, please save replays of games you win in case we need to refer to them to prove a winner. Casting: We are looking for dedicated casters to stream these tournaments. Until we find these individuals we will be streaming the games played, however there will be no commentary. If you are interested in such a role, you can find more details here: http://www.vvv-gaming.com/forum/announcement/2-twitch-caster-opportunity-for-rocket-league/ Point System: You will receive points for your participation in each tournament. These points will determine the top 8 teams and top 24 players that will participate in the two season finale tournaments. The first tournament will be hosted for the top 8 teams based on the team scores from Supersonic Showndown event. The second tournament will be hosted for the top 24 players based on the combined individual scores from all 3 events. Keep in mind that participating in Supersonic Showdown event will earn Team Points as well as half of the total team points towards your individual points. For example if your total Team point score was 10 points, you will earn 5 individual points. This has been done to encourage individual players to participate in the “Supersonic Showdown” event and help fill out teams that are missing a player for the evening. Breakdown: 2 points for participating2 points for every match won2 additional points for placing 4th4 additional points for placing 3rd6 additional points for placing 2nd10 additional points for placing 1st To stay up to date on everything we do you can: Join our steam group: http://steamcommunity.com/groups/vVvGamingRL Join the discussions on our Forum: http://www.vvv-gaming.com/forum If you have a question, just reach out to one of our event administrators via private messages on vVv Forum. Event Administrators: vVv Bagzli, vVv Samona, vVv Saturn, Chibigoat For more information on vVv Gaming and staying up to date with events that we host accross various games, visit our Website at http://vVv-Gaming.com or you can follow us on twitter @vVv_Gaming.
  4. We are often being approached as to if our lineup in this and that tournament is our main vVv Gaming's lineup. It came to our attention that there's not a huge knowledge about the so-called "vVv Gaming's Aspire StarCraft 2 Team". And thus, allow me to shed some light on the team. Take it as a belated introduction, if you will. Aspire.SC2 team was officially launched in July 2012 - with the intent of accepting hardworking, dedicated players, who aim higher than playing couple of games per week, to help them grow, as equivalent of an Academy team, to fill a void on the scene, where only the top players usually have the chance to compete in tightly organized and motivated team. We strive to reach higher levels of the competition and thus, proper commitment and dedication are required, as well as tight organization, similar to one in a professional team, adjusting it to the conditions of the individuals, who are part of the team, as well as the fact, that we are an Academy team, thus a training team. The idea is to harbour three players per race; both to make the team small so people can relate to each other and create positive team atmosphere in the team, as well as to give the team enough space for practicing with each other, further encouraging the team spirit and growth within the measures of team. The players are encouraged to play in individual tournaments, as well as the team managment looks out for the opportunities when it comes to playing in the team leagues. We aim to provide the competitive part of the venture, as we see, that it is needed to further motivate the players to try even harder, especially if they wish to eventually break into the competitive scene of StarCraft 2. We've seen it many times, that an Amateur/Academy team was established, but it's members quickly lost interest, because nothing was really happening within the team, to promote the activity and motivation of it's members. Furthermore, the best behaviour is required from every member of the team; traits like responsibility and ability to communicate are a must. We do not want players, who just show off their rank, we want players, who put in the time and dedication, who have a sense for team-play and understand, that becoming a top tier player means more comittment than just playing the game. Players are hand-picked by the Team Captain and the team management. We look at attitude, will to improve and in order to accomodate current team roster when it comes to practice, for players to fit into current skill level of the team. Team currently caters Diamond to mid-Master level players, but as the time goes and our players progress, this will naturally be raised upon needs of the team, should openings be created. We are currently developping and changing our internal procedures, in order to make our functionality as effective as possible. There are currently two mandatory nights, when the team practices together, other than that, we put huge emphasis on the teammates practicing together and we are attempting our first tokens of competitions in two team-leagues, with the major goal being our improvement & tournament experiences, rather than winning alone. As a side note, our team originally started out as a bunch of inidividuals in Diamond league. As of now, five out of our nine members reached Master league & turned into strong teammates, who aim to improve each other, and we intend to keep that trend growing, in order to provide stronger competition for our adversaries in upcoming competitions. Of course, the team doesn't run on player base alone. We have management and leadership positions, which help the team to run properly - coaches, caster, manager & assistant manager. These are the backbone of the team and are vital part of the organization, in order to provide the players with the strongest experience possible. Jana "BabyToss" Otahalova - Founder Johnatan "Ein" Ballard Jana "BabyToss" Otahalova () Chris "PoSeR" Clauson Ryan "NazguL" Thorton Adam Son "SonTran" Tran Nathan "Wakai" Pigeon Thomas "TuFF" Parker TJ "Fearful" Lopez Ott Madis "Oakwarrior" Ozolit We are hoping that this little introduction post clarifies all of the questions, as well as that it would prevent the future possible misunderstanding as to who we are and what our main goal is. You can follow our team at official vVv Gaming's Twitter - @vVv_Gaming.
  5. Hey everyone! As of yesterday, I have taken over as the manager for the vVv Gaming League of Legends division. A lot has changed here in the last 24 hours, and I wanted to talk to you all about my vision for our community. Here are a few quick points: We need to provide a better environment for our players to develop their skill and have fun. As such, we have already removed quite a few toxic players from our mumble. Please keep an eye out for toxicity. If you see toxic activity please pull the player aside and talk to them one on one. If things do not change, come to me. Additionally, applicants have been cleaned out and we will be focusing on adding quality players to our division from now on. By quality, I’m not talking about just skill. We will be looking for players that are helpful and players that are friendly. We will be focusing on creating an “Aspire” program for League of Legends players. We will make this into a place where you can receive coaching and enjoy yourself. I need your feedback! If you see something that can be done better, or if you have an idea on how we can improve, please message me! Any and all feedback is appreciated. If you would like to email me, my email address is paradise@vvv-gaming.com vVv Medusa and other staff members will be helping me out in this change. I’m looking forward to growing our League division and working together with all of you to make this the best it can be. Last but not least, I look forward to playing LoL with all of you! See you on the fields of justice!
  6. 203 downloads

    The new intro video for all vVv Gaming videos.
  7. Despite the rather philosophical and metaphorical nature of the title of this blog, all I'm doing today is talking about my weekend, specifically this past Saturday morning. This past Saturday morning happened to be one of the best examples of how life is just full of opportunities waiting to be taken, most of which are fed to you on a silver platter but you may not even realize it. However, in my case, it all started with a newspaper ad. Let's backtrack to earlier last week. It was about mid-Wednesday when I walked back into my dad's house after staying with some friends for a couple of days. I usually swap between my dad's place and friends' houses every couple of days; when I'm home, I'm working on writing and playing video games or watching tons of NCIS; when I'm with my friends, I'm not doing much else except play video games, hang out, go to parties and eat Taco Bell. Needless to say, I like being home for a few days in between being with friends, just as a breather. When I returned home, I walked by my dad's computer table and my eyes instantly darted toward a piece of laminated paper. On top of the paper, but also laminated, was a small newspaper clipping and on the paper, a written note. It was from my dad's girlfriend, saying that he should address the newspaper clipping. Written in the newspaper clipping was an add seeking people for an upcoming movie called, “Noah.” Now, I've never done much of any acting, but it's always been a personal dream to get into it, as it may be for many others. However, it's never really been a passion strong enough for me to take classes or get into theater. For me, it's always been something that I thought would just “happen” for me – maybe I would impress someone one day and end up with lines in a movie. Hey, it could happen right? Of course, another way to go about it is to go to casting calls, where casting agencies look for people to put into movies, televisions shows, plays, commercials, even web series. If you're not already in the business, it can be rather difficult to just break into a Hollywood career, and it's still rather difficult if you already are. Still, I saw this as an opportunity. If anything, it'd be a fun Saturday morning with my dad, who looked rather excited to be in attendance. The ad was looking for “slim, slender men and women, with runner's bodies.” While I'm not in the best of shape, I'm definitely slim and slender – my dad, on the other hand, is a big, bald, muscular dude who would probably be better fit for playing the role as a football player or a wrestler. Nevertheless, he really wanted to go and, since I had nothing to do that morning, I tagged along. The casting call was about a half hour away from my dad's in a town called Brookville, which is the same town that I had lived in for one year just after I moved from my hometown and just one year before I moved to Connecticut at the end of 9th grade (technically, I lived in Upper Brookville, but whatever). The entire ride there, my dad and I talked about what exactly the casting call would be like, what we may be doing, and, obviously, how cool it would be if the both of us got into the movie. Mid-ride, I looked up the movie and found that, contrary to what I was thinking, this movie “Noah” is going to be a big-budget film, not some indie short or something to that effect. Once I found out that Russell Crowe and Emma Stone were going to be in the movie, I knew shit was going to get real. This was now more exciting than ever – if we got into the movie, I could meet these people! Maybe! Anyway, we finally arrive at the location of the casting call, which happens to be at a local church. We find our way into a decently-sized room with about one hundred chairs. Some people were already there, but overall the room was rather empty. No one there seemed important, either. This is pretty much what it looked like. It wasn't until almost an hour later, when the casting call was about to begin, that not only a parade of wannabe-actors and actresses walk in, even some that seemed qualified by holding resumes and portfolios or headshots and whatnot, but also some rich-as-hell and important-as-hell-looking people strolled in. These people were the ones that seemed to be running the entire thing. Not long after, the two of us and everyone else in the room were given a form to fill out. Apparently, this form was just for basic information that they would use to cast for future projects – once you're in their database, any time they do a casting call, you'll be automatically put into the running and possibly considered without even moving a muscle. However, this form was far from basic...I mean, how in the hell am I supposed to know my neck size and jacket length off the top of my head? And why was my dad's Ford F150 considered a “prop” when I'm at a casting call for a movie set in biblical times? Does Russell Crowe not finish the ark in time and needs a getaway vehicle to escape the flood? I guess I'd have to be in the business to know that information. When I was filling out the form, another man walked up to me and gave me a card, telling me to write my name on it and keep it on me. It was entirely vague and almost a bit creepy, but I nevertheless felt very excited because I was specifically picked for something! Soon after, one of the important-looking dudes grabbed a microphone, apparently from a dimensional portal inside the right pocket of his jeans, and began to speak to us. We were told that the call is based primarily on filling out that form and then getting a picture taken of us. Once both of those things were done, we could leave, since the building was getting packed with people and a huge line was forming behind us, so they wanted to keep things moving. Though, if you were given one of those cards to put your name on, you must go outside once your done and wait. He also explained that the casting call was for another movie called, “Wolves of Wall Street” or something like that, but after that I heard nothing more on the film. Guess I wasn't leaving anytime soon. I felt bad for my dad, considering it was his idea to go, but he didn't get one of those cards. Then again, I didn't know what exactly the cards were meant for, so they could have been for something bad (there's always that possibility), but no one knew at that point. I still hadn't got called up for my picture to be taken yet, so it wasn't of much concern. When my row of chairs finally did get called, we all stood and formed a line for our pictures to be taken. After a few minutes, I got up to a table and handed a short man my form. On both of his arms, he had some pretty cool Super Mario Bros tattoos that wrapped around his biceps and fore-arms. I pointed them out and told him that they were cool, in which he only replied, “Thanks.” I shrugged it off and walked by him to get my picture taken. This was one of his tattoos. He also had Peach dressed as that chick from Waterboy and Mario as Jesus from The Passion. As I stood at the tape on the ground, waiting for the camera guys to find the right backdrop for my awesome picture (apparently, after using the same part of the wall for other people, now it was decided that they needed a new place to take these pictures), the tattooed guy turned in his chair and stretched out his arm, in his hand a small card. I took it, finding that it was one of those name cards from earlier but with information on the back: the name of a film and an email address. He told me to send pictures of myself to that email address. Fuck yeah, I'm good. I get picked for movies without even trying. So, now I was in the running for three different films, one of which being the one mentioned on the back of that card. I guess they weren't casting for that film that morning, so to be picked for some role or position for that movie got me really hyped. I'm still pressuring my dad so I can get headshots of myself as quick as possible (after I finished this sentence, I got up and reminded my dad again, just to be more of a bother). With pictures taken for both my dad and I, we stepped outside and I seemed to be one of the first ones out there to be waiting thanks to that card. I didn't really converse with anyone – there was a small group of people talking to each other that all seemed hand-picked for this specific movie and were there because the casting guys asked them to be. Other people stepped outside in small bunches and they all seemed disconnected, so I didn't make any moves at anyone. I just stood near my father unit and talked with him for a while. Finally, one of the casting people walked outside. I had no idea if he was the director of the movie, but he might as well have been – he spoke like how I thought a director would speak and dressed like how I thought one would dress, he was definitely playing the role well if he wasn't director already. I'll call him the director. The director was now addressing us, letting us know that we were chosen because we fit the bill rather well and now we were going to do some small acting routines that will be featured in what seemed like an action scene in the movie. Next to him was a bulky, curly haired man that looked of Hawaiian descent. The director told us that we'd be split into two groups, one with him and one with Hawaii man, and would do some basic acting then switch stations (so, we'd be with Hawaii man first, then the director or vice versa). Pretty much exactly what he looked like but much more muscular. I was split into the Hawaii man's group first. We walked farther away from the building with the guy, who was very much less director-ish than his buddy. On our way to our “station,” he explained that we were all basically cast for the movie and now they were looking for people to do some minor action stuff that isn't exactly stunt-worthy, as in we'd be getting paid a bit more than regular extras because we were going to be doing some physical work, though we were considered stunt-doubles or anything. This was awesome news. I wasn't sure how accurate his statement was – that we were literally cast in the movie or that our chances of being cast were much better, to the point that we might as well be – but either way I was excited as all hell. To be simply cast like that, as if it were the means of snapping one's fingers, was such an intense experience. Over at the Hawaii man's station, our first acting had to do with pretending we were holding a shield and spear and had to poke upward, as if we were fighting something much larger than us. I could explain to you why, as we were told, but I don't want to be “that guy” nor do I like spoilers, even if the movie doesn't come out until 2014. Let's just say that if you've read the Bible or at least just the story of Noah, this movie doesn't exactly follow that story exactly. Anyway, I was one of the first to go and with a loud, “ACTION!,” from Tito of Rocket Power fame, I marched forward, doing my best impression of a guy with a spear and a shield fighting something much larger than himself. I felt like I did a pretty good job, but once I was done, I knew I definitely did a good job – Hawaii man pointed to me and said, “Good job, kid, good job,” while giving me a nice thumbs-up. Achievement Unlocked – Hawaiian Man Likes Your Style. I am, of course, not an actor by trade, so for a random guy like me to actually do well in some acting felt good. At the same time, I was absolutely baffled by the performances of the others – over half of my group was made up by guys and girls that had come to the casting call with portfolios, resumes, pictures, etc, many of which claiming to be actors and actresses. But, holy shit, did some of them suck! One guy thought he was a boxer, using his “spear” like a dagger and his shield like a baseball bat (???) to deliver too many strikes in an unrealistic amount of time. Another guy wasn't even trying. His performance was so pathetic that I was actually surprised at how bad some people could be at acting. If he actually went to war as a guy with a spear and a shield, he'd be the last to die because no opponent would consider him enough of a threat to actually waste time on killing him first. After that session, which also included some formation drills (which weren't hard and no one seemed to do those particularly awful), we left Hawaiian man and made our way back over to the director. At this station, we had to run at about 3/4th speed and come to a quick stop, as if something comes out of nowhere and stops our progress. As much as that sounds somewhat easy, it's a lot harder than it seems. 3/4th speed still means that you're giving it at least a jog and then to stop on as close to a dime as possible due to something that doesn't exist, and not fall over, and make sure that your facial expression mirrors a situation in which you're rather desperate and for this calamity to happen is terrible...well, it's a huge clusterfuck of stuff you have to do and it's not easy, especially for someone with no acting experience like myself. Because of how many people that were waiting, I only got to do it twice. I have to say, I did the exercise rather well – not the best, but definitely one of the best out of the people in my group. I definitely tried my hardest to make it convincing. After a couple of rounds, we were done. The groups came together with the director and Hawaiian man. The two explained to us that the working conditions would be hard, as the scene has action and isn't exactly set upon a yacht or anything like that. However, we would be getting paid more. Still, he stressed that people that don't think they can handle it should just back out. No one did, but considering some of the performances I saw, I wish they did. Jeez, shit was bad at times. We also had to do a scene in which we pretend to be a super hero and cry about it. We all lined up and met the director and Hawaiian man individually, which basically boiled down to handing them the cards with our names on them and getting a handshake. I thanked them for their time, then walked over to my dad so we could head home. Of course, the entire way back we talked about the experience. My dad, though disappointed that he didn't get specifically picked for anything, was still happy that he went and was proud of me. He talked anxiously about finding more casting calls so that he could one day be in a movie with Russell Crowe, which would be awesome for him. He also sent a text to his girlfriend's daughter, who is a photographer, so I could get headshots done for that other movie that I need to email out. And then I went home and played Street Fighter. All I wanted to do was play more Street Fighter. So, the moral of the story is to always take opportunities and pursue your dreams, even if you think it's impossible. You'll always lose if you never try, even if the stakes are high or your goal is unreachable. Sometimes, things can just go your way and an opportunity will present itself that may change part or all of your life. I mean, is this just some acting work or the beginning of a full-fledged Hollywood career? Am I the next James Franco? I could very well be! Or we could be in the sequel to Pineapple Express together, that would be sweet. Or, at the very least, always take time to read the newspaper and peruse the ads. You never know what you'll find.
  8. In the aftermath of this year's EVO 2012 event, I felt the need to get back into playing more fighting games and putting together an effort to do well at tournaments. In these past several months, I have missed the feeling of practicing fighting games and going to tournaments - EVO was the kicker I needed to refuel that passion. Yesterday, while perusing Facebook and still hyped about EVO, I came across a long entry by a friend, Geoff "Vermanubis" Butterworth. He's one of the most well-known Smash players in its community, being an extremely talented and intelligent individual who also happens to be one of the best Ganondorf players in the country. What he posted spoke to me in volumes, so much that I bookmarked it and read it over and over. Now, I want to share it all with you. The following are words from Geoff, not me, and I take no credit in producing the quote. Geoff gave me permission to post this in my blog. I only want to share these words with all of you and hope it helps with your careers in competitive gaming or anything else in life. --- "In retrospect of Evo, I've been thinking about how people improve at things, and trying to dig a little deeper into why some people excel, while others get stymied. To keep it as brief as possible, I think it can be simplified to observation. For example, in my musical pursuits (I know, I create an analog between music and just about everything), I actively and manually rebuild my understanding of music so I can arrive at a conceptualization of music that's most successful for my particular application. In order to analyze songs, I needed to learn to read sheet music so I could explore the harmonies in a song a bit closer. However, I didn't and haven't been making an effort to deconstruct my current understanding of sheet music, so my sight-reading skills stay about the same. The point of this is that you can't labor away at something mindlessly and hope to breach an obstacle. I'm far more concerned with the content of the music than developing an algorithmic ability to read on sight. So, naturally, I've plateaued at my current level of sight-reading, despite reading music almost daily. If you want to excel at something, you have to greet any and all problems and weaknesses and endure the ass-pains of reconstructing particular models of thinking. Pumping in time like it's going out of style isn't going to get anyone anywhere. Time in conjunction with a cognitive effort to understand the nature of the task is what makes people do well. Think of a concept like a lump of clay. Every time you consider a new concept, such as, say, what to do in an unfamiliar match-up, it's like adding another lump of clay. To integrate that lump of clay, you need to mold it, 'cause it won't just osmose into the bigger lump by itself. This is just a pattern I've noticed in both myself and in just about everyone else. When effort is put to thinking and understanding, instead of hoping for causeless epiphanies, results invariably come." -Geoff "Vermanubis" Butterworth (Permission to post granted)
  9. On my recent trip to Chicago I received a new SteelSeries Sensei mouse and I wanted to share my thoughts on this incredible piece of equipment! Is the Sensei worth a purchase? In short: YES! Check out my video review on YouTube here: Purchase your own SteelSeries Sensei on the SteelSeries Website here. If you already have a Sensei and would like the vVv Gaming bitmap I used in the video, click here: Sensei Mouse vVv Bitmap.bmp
  10. God damn it. I really didn't want to like this game at all. I was a hardcore Starcraft 2 monster, very happy grinding my way through mid-level leagues until somehow becoming the champion of the world in 2016. And I dismissed this game rather quickly for being somewhat hard to follow at first glance and for its cartoonish style. Now that I think about it, all the hate I had for the game was probably rather illogical, but then again, hate is rarely logical. Then, at MLG Anaheim, our good friend Mr. vVv LordJerith convinced me that I should dabble more in the realm of MOBAs and MMOs. With Guild Wars 2 far out on the horizon, really my only best choice without spending any outlandish amounts of money (just purchased a ticket to DayGlow) was League of Legends. He said I'd enjoy it, and I said it was stupid. And now I really enjoy it. I honestly could go on and on about what I like about the game, so I will. First of all, it's free-to-play. All that was needed from me was a download and install. I don't know about anyone else, but free stuff is amazing, especially if the free stuff happens to be a well-made video game that's actually worth something. I mean, what better way is there to get into a competitive game than to pick one up that costs you know monetary investment? And what better way to advertise a highly-competitive title than to make it free? I can't think of one (well, I can, but they're not appropriate for all audiences [hookers]). So I decided to finally start it up and get into playing. Now, from watching LoL matches at various MLG events, I realized I probably wouldn't understand how exactly the game works until I play it, but I already had a basic idea of how games functioned - walk around, cast spells, level up, merk bitches, destroy stuff, take their base, destroy the base, enjoy victory. And, obviously excluding major and minor details, that's pretty much a summary of any game of competitive LoL ever. But once I got to playing it, I found that it was not only enjoyable, but somewhat addicting. For a new player surrounded by other new players, and some low-skill ones, I found myself doing rather well in my introductory matches after utilizing the game's tutorial. Once I figured out the basic gameplan of what a LoL player should be doing to get XP and Gold, as well as deal with enemy champions, I pretty much dominated a majority of my matches. And even in matches my team lost, I still did pretty okay and wasn't completely shut-out. I really began to enjoy the huge amount of champions to choose from. It felt like Riot played a lot of Marvel vs Capcom 2 back in their day considering how huge the roster is. With so many champions, I felt a bit more at home on the selection screen, and was pleasantly surprised to find a number of heroes that seemed enjoyable. I played several rounds with Skarner, Malphite, and Fiddlesticks thanks to them being free at the time, and enjoyed learning what they had to offer and how I could use them to play specific roles on a team, even if my team was just a random bunch of people. Eventually I got that, "one more game, one more game..." kind of feeling, to the point where I spent an entire afternoon playing and forgot to eat any sort of lunch or dinner, only being reminded by my dad that I had only ate eggs and toast earlier that day and that I was probably starving. I was - it was very easy for me to just jump into another game, talk with new people, figure out a strategy, and try to play my best. Meeting new people to play with was a lot of fun, especially after having an enjoyable time with one another in a particular lane and doing well, prompting each other to congratulate one another after every possible action and send friend requests immediately after the match. I missed that kind of interaction, one that is so desperately needed in an experience like Starcraft 2, where loneliness is very common. The one thing I didn't miss, however, were idiotic teammates. Besides the several afk people and a couple of feeders, I only had one instance where a teammate just did something so ridiculously stupid that it made me become vocally annoyed with it. It basically boiled down to when I was jumped into an emergency 2v1 situation just as one of my teammates was returning from base. I got slowed out of nowhere just as my teammate came to my side. Instead of helping me, he promptly turned right around and ran away. I almost got away with a kill, but was unable to finish one of them off. Either way, I was going to die, no thanks to my mate, who then now had a 2v1 situation of his own that he barely survived thanks to turret hugging. Wasn't happy about that. Still, I find League of Legends to be very enjoyable, which still sort of bothers me. Now that I've been playing League, I want to continue to play League, but now I feel like all the time I've put into Starcraft 2 to be genuinely good will be cast out the window if I stop putting the time in. And now with summer in full gear, I'll have a job, and I've moved down to NY for the time being to see my friends. I feel a bit overwhelmed. But then I remember that it's all just gaming and I'll get over it eventually. I do what I was meant to do. And really what I feel like I am meant to do right now is to kick ass on LoL for the bitches. Bitches love ass kicking on LoL. So yeah, I'm enjoying it. Fuck.
  11. If you only knew. . . the changes that were coming down the pipeline. For the past 100 or so episodes of The Loser's Bracket podcast, we have talked about the evolution of eSports and our ever growing role in its development. As you all know, after MLG Columbus, we started a serious crackdown on social media use, dropping many members, and moving many into the community gamer group. After that, we had to take a close look at where we were and where eSports was headed. When we took a look at the numbers, we realized that we had been too nice. We had let things linger. I was reminded of the 2008 Darren Aronofsky film, The Wrestler. In this film, Rourke plays an aging professional wrestler who continues to wrestle matches in an attempt to cling on to his 1980s heyday despite his failing health. If you haven't seen it, I can't recommend it enough. Let me show the Top XBox titles played for the week of April 9th taken from Major Nelson's Blog Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 3 Call of Duty: Black Ops FIFA 12 Battlefield 3 Halo: Reach Modern Warfare 2 Skyrim Gears of War 3 NBA 2K12 Mass Effect 3 As we looked at this, we realized that we had to make some tough decisions. The first thing we decided was that we would only have formal divisions in games that were at a major event like (MLG, IPL, NASL, IEM, etc). We decided to take all non-sponsored players (no effect on sponsored players) for all games that were not at a major events and put them in the Community Gamer group. We needed to lose the distinction between Halo/Gears/CoD/Rhythm Gaming groups and merge them into a more diverse Community Gamer Group. We want our community gamers to be a diverse group. We chose red as their color to reflect that community gamers were our blood, our beginning and what makes vVv Gaming so special. This change makes it easier to manage and better align our efforts with the titles that actually are at major events and have the kind of developer support needed for success as an eSport. With that, some of you saw our non-sponsored Halo players basically revolt, force us to take down the shoutbox 3 times, and then resign. I was very disappointed with the behavior of one person in particular, and he has been banned. We take the chain of command very seriously, and the shoutbox is not the place to fight. Sadly, he could not separate the critique of his game, Halo, from the critique of himself. We always respect the person in vVv Gaming, but we CAN attack the game someone loves while still respecting the person. Hate the game, not the gamer. If your game gets attacked, don't make it personal. Period. I can promise you that if any of those games listed above end up at a major event, we will gladly give them their own group. Please know that all our sponsored players still keep their user group. Until then, I want everyone to know our priorities: Starcraft 2 League of Legends Mortal Kombat 9/Soul Caliber V/King of Fighters XIII Diablo 3 (release May 15th) Guild Wars 2 (release June 26th est.) Halo Reach/Halo 4 (release November 6th) Call of Duty MW3/Call of Duty Black Ops 2 (we will know the release date on 5/2/2012) DotA2? Counter Strike: Go? Possible Rhythm Gaming revival? That's all we can predict right now. As far as sponsorships, we are now offering two kind of sponsorships: Professional and Content. Professional sponsorships are awarded to our best players who are working to be professional gamers. This covers all of our current sponsorships. Content sponsorships are our community players who are working to become professional content producers. I also want to talk about staff. As you know, they work very hard. We recently have gone through some staff changes as well. All were due to burnout or staffers getting busy with balancing life and their duties on staff, so expect to see some new faces. We have seen so much interest in vVv Gaming that I am excited to get some fresh blood and fresh ideas onto our staff. I want to wish both Voison and Slauney good luck, as they both need to attend to other parts of their life. They will both remain vVv members, but their time on staff, for now, has come to an end. Thank you both for all your hard work. I want to cover everyone's roles so you know what they do: Executives vVv LordJerith (President/Owner) vVv Doomhammer (Senior Vice President) Administrators vVv Brock (Vice President of Visual Media) vVv Paradise (Podcast Producer) vVv Robzgod (Marketing Manager) vVv SugarBear (StarCraft 2 Manager) Moderators vVv AmpeD (DotA2 Manager) vVv Arkaine (Community Gamer Manager) vVv Bizkit (Community Gamer Manager) vVv Esoteric (Fighting Games Manager) vVv Nocontrol (LoL Manager) vVv Plattypus (LoL Community Manager) Writers vVv Blazek vVv Rapture We will be recruiting more writers and casters, as well as selecting our GW2 Guild Leader and officers and a Diablo 3 manager. We have so much great stuff happening!
  12. In my last blog I talked about Community Involvement. If you haven't watched the I suggest that you check it out before reading this... Now that you know how to get involved if you're already apart of the community, I want to talk about community growth. How do we get more people to play the game? Watch it? Support it? This blog is mainly geared towards console shooters, but can be applicable to any title with a competitive aspect. Strategy & Educational Content As usual, I'm going to be using Gears of War 3 for my examples. This game has a very small skill gap, what I mean by this is that gun skill isn't very hard to master. Unlike most shooters, GoW3 has more of a mental skill-gap, therefore content should be focused on showcasing decision making and strategy just like Starcraft. Many of the decisions players make are instincts, and second nature to them for playing the game since GoW1. This creates a bubble for newer players to get involved if GoW3 is their first title because they don't make decisions based off of experience, and instincts. Amateur Tournaments Although showcasing the best talent in the game has it's advantages when trying to bring new players into the community, I believe that it's very redundant and only helps so much. Showcase matches are great for communities that are thriving with amateur players working hard to go pro and spectators alike. If the top players even want a game to compete in, they'll start helping the amateur players and creating tournaments with the Amateur player in mind. The reason why finding Amateur talent is so crucial is because it creates amazing stories, drama, and finds players such as Snipedown, RyanNoob, and many more. Communities can't run on 16 pro teams, there needs to be the Amateur community presence who attend events and watch the tournament after they get knocked out. Cameron of Fnatic believes that Amateur Teams are the Unsung Heroes of eSports. I agree 100%. AM Tournaments give players a chance to prove themselves, and gives them the confidence to keep playing and grinding. Props to NJ Rod, Cream, and Goldenboy for creating tournaments like this. They get it. Social Media and Word of Mouth Social Media has been a great tool for eSports and it’s growth these past few years. Having a presence on Twitter, facebook, and YouTube has become mandatory for most sponsors and partners. I’ve noticed many players in the console community not using it to it’s fullest potential. These players are generally the ones saying ‘I need more followers’ or Advertising their twitters on their streams, youtube channels, or xbox live profile. What I’m getting at is that players need to start using their twitters to promote other content that’s not their own. I know it’s important for you to have that Twitter follower number very high, but what’s the point if you don’t even tweet relevant information to your communities growth? For Example, if there was a community ran tournament, montage, tutorial, or stream why not tweet it out? As a top player, your social media activity is looked at more often and by more people, you’re much more influential because of your status in the game. Top Player Etiquette and Manner As a top player or known player in the community you’re looked up to by the amateurs and up and coming players in the community. If you’re starting arguments on twitter or complaining about the game, how do you expect your fans or followers to act? You need to set an example in the community. If a SC2 player acted like some of the Console players do, there would be a 200 page thread on Team Liquid talking about professionalism and maturity. If you want your game to be taken seriously by sponsors, brands, or leagues, start acting serious and think before you post something on social media. The shit talk and blame game doesn’t make the community very appealing to newer players trying to get involved in the community because the people they look up too are acting like 12 year olds. Follow me on Twitter for updates on when I post blogs and eSports news! @vVv_RobZGod
  13. MLG Columbus was awesome. Yes, I'm sure (at least, I hope) most of you know this. Many of you went, but a huge majority were left at home to enjoy the streams. I honestly could have written a huge blog about my experiences at Columbus and how awesome it was and all the stuff you probably expect and have heard before. Seriously, I could have done it, but I didn't. I'm a bit lazy, sometimes. However, weeks later, I do want to comment on the event, because there's one thing I really do need to talk about, and it's not necessarily about the event, actually. I'm taking this time to write this mostly because I'm taking a break in between Starcraft 2 practice sessions and I need to update this blog here. But don't focus on the reason, focus on the content. I learned something really important from MLG Columbus, which is the first MLG event I've attended since Meadowlands 2008. There's a stark contrast between those two events, to the point where I was actually overwhelmed at first because I just didn't expect the kind of event I was walking into. It had a great vibe to it, almost more like an event (with booths and special side-events and all of that) rather than just a tournament. It had a very E3 vibe to it, and being such a fan of E3 after attending last year's expo, I fit right in. And, of course, I enjoyed all the competition. But what I really enjoyed was finally meeting a ton of vVv Gaming members, from community gamers and competitors to the boss LordJerith himself. And even in three days (and almost a day's worth of driving total), I came to find out how important communites are in competitive gaming and how awesome this one is. Columbus certainly reminded me of how much I actually like the community. Meeting my fellow staff members, and just community members in general, all of whom provided a very warm welcome to my antics and tallness, was really awesome. I had not met any vVv members before this event, aside from Gears and CoD players at NJ Halo and former vVv member (and now at Boss.tv) Freedom, so this was quite the experience. I think people seem to forget that there are actual people behind our usernames, and this just reassured it. The entire event was a highlight – from the couple of dinners we shared as a community (one being staff members only, mind you) to drinking together while listening to the life and times of Jerry (and telling us about RobZGod as if he was RobZGod or something) to chatting with Roar and Sugarbear about SC2 to meeting high-profile people and other awesome figures like SirScoots, TheAnswerKoF, and so many more. It was all one continuous awesome memory, so much so that I can't remember a dull moment. With that said, I'm more reassured than ever than communities in competitive gaming are, and excuse my language, so god damn fucking awesome. It's what keeps people playing games by giving gamers others to connect with and play with. We can all share ideas, thoughts, opinions, content, and so much more in such a familiar venue. And, most of all, it creates the ideal family, one that may not be perfect but is always there when you need it (provided you don't act like a complete jerk off). It almost amazes me that there aren't more organizations out there copying our model. More importantly, communities generate fans. Jerry said this on The Loser's Bracket once before, but I feel it's necessarily to bring it up again. As a community, we can all cheer together for our players, and that's a great feeling. We were loud and proud when our Mortal Kombat players were destroying the bracket, hell we even got loud for our new King of Fighters player Romance (who needs to brush up on his English ) and our new Halo: Reach team, vVv Ability. And, you know what else? That certainly makes our top players feel even better when they know they'll always have a crowd behind them cheering them on. We couldn't give enough love to Daisuki, RuFF, and Glon as they broke expectations and played amazingly in the Open Bracket. We even cheered on Spike as he tried to unsuccessfully Thor rush in one of his sets. No matter where our teams or players were, we were standing right behind them, being the loudest fans and the most numerous. Now, I have to say this with all honesty, but I'm so glad to be part of vVv Gaming. There have been numerous times I've considered possibly stepping down from any position I've been in or even leaving vVv altogether (all of which mostly fueled by teenage angst or something equally as stupid or irrelevant). And, in those occasions, I knew the decision was not the right one, I felt like vVv was my home and I didn't want to leave. Well, after this event, I can safely say that not only I made the best decision to continue to stay with vVv, but also that I'm extremely grateful to be part of this community. I may not be an admin putting in hard work to keep the community afloat, but I feel like I put my own spin on things and, so far, that's worked out for me (3 years as a vVv member coming this September!). I always feel welcomed and I love (most of xD) you guys to death. Without vVv, I wouldn't have had an awesome crew to roll with throughout the weekend, a family to stay with in the hotel, a community to cheer players on with. And by being in vVv, I got awesome wisdom from Jerry and the rest of the crew. And I had tons of people to talk to about how great spending the weekend with vVv was. So, as I said, I don't have a huge warstory on my time at Columbus (maybe when I start competing in SC2!), but I did have to say this. All of you, be glad you're here on the forums, vVv member or not. Because what you're a part of is something special, something that will develop you into an even more awesome person...or, at the very least, give you something great to be part of in your spare time. Whether you're a competitor, staff member, community member, or shoutbox troll, appreciate your time here. And I'm glad to spend that time here with all of you. Sugarbear, you're gonna have to pay me my $60 son!
  14. I attended this event for various reasons. Most importantly because it was vVv Gaming’s 5 year anniversary and I haven’t attended an event since Meadowlands 2009. On short notice I signed up to be a volunteer for this event. I was unsure if I could even fulfill the obligations, but wasn’t going to turn this opportunity down. I knew it was a way to my foot in the door, network with like minded people, and experience a different perspective on the event. Leading up to tournament, I worked at my sister’s bar for tips during St. Patrick's Day to pay for my travel. This was a very fun, but interesting experience. I used some clever marketing to get people in the door such as drawing arrows, writing CHEAP BEER and $2 PBR on the sidewalks. All I could think about was MLG Columbus, all the hard work and putting up with the drunks was worth it when I was picked up by vVv Brock, his brother, and Plattypus Thursday night. We were off to Columbus, Ohio with a stop in NY to pick up Rapture. The 12 hour drive had begun, and I was sitting bitch the entire trip. I didn’t sleep. How could I with all of the thoughts running through my head? We arrived at Columbus at about 1pm. I was glad to meet more of the vVv Community and watch them attempt to play Halo with a guitar on a 40 inch screen. Good times. I was scheduled to start working at 5:30, but entered the venue at 4 after eating some delicious Sushi for the first time with Jerry, Doom, and Blazek. I was intrigued when I saw what goes on behind the scenes at events when I was handed my Staff pass. Working as a volunteer, even though it was a small position definitely made me appreciate the work that all eSports event organizers put into this. I was overwhelmed by the size of the event, like I mentioned before my last event was 2009. It was breathtaking to see the thousands of fans, stations, and chairs. (MLG events didn’t have any seating in 2009 ) After getting my pass I did a walk through of the event and saw Compact Killer, and Betty sitting down. This was definitely one of the most awkward moments in my life because they didn’t recognize me at first, and I was overly excited to see them. I told them I was working the Uncharted FFA event, and they decided to play in it because the prizes were very good. My job at the Uncharted event was a referee. I had to write down the scores, make sure the settings were right, and keep the tournament running smoothly with Brian who is an experienced MLG Referee and Carlos who is the Playstation 3 Community Tournament Manager. Volunteering for this event also made me realize just how passionate I was for eSports, I was engaged so deep in the atmosphere and experience that I didn’t notice that I hadn’t slept in 30 hours until after I got back to the hotel. I really enjoyed the work, and hope to attend Anaheim as staff member as well. Photo taken by OZ After getting a solid 6 hours of sleep I was ready to start working again. Today was a full today, 10am-8pm, and man I was excited to work. Once again I was reminded how happiness inspires productivity. When I wasn’t writing scores down, checking settings, and teaching people the controls, I was trying to get people to come play. I explained the tournament and game hundreds of times to people who seemed interested in spectating the games. It appeared that many people who I explained the tournament to were quick to jump on a station. Many were actually overwhelmed that it was free to enter. Although this may sound boring, doing it while around thousands of gamers who love eSports and video games made it enjoyable. Photo taken by Josh I think that Columbus was the best MLG event to date. The stories, hype, and history are what made it so special. There was a lot of controversy leading up to the event with last minute announcements in fighting games, rules, and of course the Winter Arena pricing. As for history, halo is what started MLG, and without it, MLG wouldn’t be where it is today. I was a skeptic at first to see if the Halo community would show up, but was very happy to see and hear the Halo community at the event. You couldn’t ask for better stories in all of the titles featured. vVv CDjr and his brothers all making it into the top 8, and having to team kill vVv REO for 1st in the last round of the bo11 series. MKP showing that he has left his 2nd place curse in the past by taking 1st at two major tournaments in a row, and defeating the most recent GSL champion in DRG. Finally, halo going to a game 11 coming down to the final kills in team slayer. Fucking amazing. Photo taken by OZ This event was also very special to me personally. It was vVv Gaming’s 5 year anniversary, and I have been apart of this amazing community since the very beginning. I wouldn’t be the person that I am today if I didn’t stumble across vVv Woody56292 in a public game with the website in his motto. The lessons and experience I’ve gained both as a player and person are invaluable to me. Growing up with eSports and vVv in my life has been such an educational and life-changing ride. When talking to Jerry at Columbus it made me realize how much I’ve learned throughout these years from a forum troll, vVv Applicant, Player, MMO Closet nerd, and now Staff member. Thank You. Follow me on Twitter for updates on when I post blogs and eSports news! @vVv_RobZGod
  15. Normally, I tend not to have a schedule when I make blog posts, but for a daily journal such as this, it's hard not to keep up with the precedent set so far. However, because there has only been one blog post before this and, as far as I'm concerned, 0 hits, who cares what the result is. I could just stop posting all together. But I guess this is more for me than anyone else. Unfortunately, I was unable to sit down last night and type this up, so I'm getting to it the following day. Most likely I'll have two of these go up on the same day, but whatever. Yesterday was a pretty busy day for me, but it didn't start out that way. After classes, I was determined to take a nap before getting to any activities that day, but my inability to dose off prevented that from happening. Instead, I decided to go for a run, which actually turned into going to the gym and working out by myself. I'm not a gym rat at all, in fact I'm rather frail and skinny because I don't work out ever and my exercise mainly came from sports (which I don't really play much of anymore in college). It'd be a bit of an understatement to say, plainly, that I'm sore today following my workout yesterday. After cooling off and showering, I made my way to the library for another lab session. Yesterday was such a beautiful day, so thankfully I was able to grab my usual seat on the 3rd floor next to the window. I opened that shit up and let the amazing breeze and clean spring air flow in. It felt pretty awesome to have the breeze coming in as I played on ladder. As I said yesterday, my goal for each day is to play a minimum of ten games before coming to a decision on either leaving the session or laddering more. Yesterday was quite not like that routine, but it certainly started off normally. My home...the Silver League. Maintaining my high Silver league status, I was put up against two Silver players, a Terran and a Zerg, both of which I lost to. I was keeping my notes from the previous day in class – don't do stupid builds, scan and scout often, don't let the opponent stabilize, etc. And, personally, I felt like I did a good job. In both games, however, I was essentially out-macroed. The first ladder match, the TvT, probably came down to an early marine/marauder push I made that dropped my army numbers much lower than they should have been, and I just could not recover. I wasn't too happy, but they weren't the worst losses in a row. But then my next two games were much easier. I got paired against two Bronze players in my following matches and one without difficulty. This bothered me a bit – the game felt confident in pairing me against Bronze players, which means it may be suggesting that that's where I belong. However, I solidly beat these players, which means while I definitely do not belong in Bronze, I cannot consistently beat Silver players in the same way I beat Bronze players, so I won't be in Gold or higher until I can do that. I quickly moved on and stopped concerning myself with the issue. In my fifth 1v1 ladder match, I got another TvT, which was certainly an odd match. The game started out simply – I began with a standard Terran opening and was essentially building up a marine/marauder/tank army that would just push out alongside an upgrade timing or something. However, my opponent had a different plan in mind. After a small bout in the middle of the map, things quieted down, until I found that he was massing tanks outside my base and was inching closer. I couldn't do much at first; walking right up to the siege line would be suicide. I had some Thors popping out, but they couldn't do much from my natural and would only get damaged if they tried to creep down the ramp. I even lost a bunker and some depots thanks to the siege line and a few scans gaining my opponent vision temporarily. Without any avenue to leave my base or expand, I was effectively pinned down, and with each passing minute my opponent's mass of tanks was growing larger. Even marines were streaming towards my base. He had all my options covered, it seems. Times a million. However, in reality, that was not the case. My opponent was so concerned with moving closer and closer to my base while picking off any outlying buildings that he could that he wasn't paying any attention at all to what was going on in my main base. With all of his scans being used up for my ramp and a small distance into my natural, he could not see that I had transitioned into starports. I plopped down tech labs on all three of my new structures and began to get the resources necessary for the newest additions to my army: three battlecruisers. Before I had begun making them, however, I had sent out a couple of medivacs and a viking to support my army and scout, respectively. Seeing that he only had his natural expansion as the only base other than his main, I took this opportunity to drop into his natural mineral line. Of course, he had no army to defend it because his whole army was sieged outside my base. He decided to send a small squad of marines, but he underestimated the power of 1/1 marines and marauders supported by two medivacs. Another squad of marines fell to my drop, but it would end up meaning very little – three battlecruisers created a large presence in my base. They inched toward my ramp, over my army, closer and closer to my opponent and...ragequit. “Victory!” my screen read, he had left the game without even a good game exerted. Obviously, once he saw that my battlecruisers existed, there was no other option. Tanks, as many of you may or may not know, cannot attack air units. Battlecruisers fly. Put 1 and 1 together. I was happy to finish my first 5 games with a 3-2 record; not the best performance, not the worst. As for now, my 1v1 ladder practice was over with. A few friends had gotten online, so we had enough to run 3v3s. And let me just say this – fuck team games. Now, don't get me wrong, I absolutely love team matches. They're a great way to practice macro, and it all takes place without the seriousness of 1v1 (at least for me, that is). We all shot insults at each other, scoffing at one's micro or whatever, but we had a fun time. However, it seems to me that everyone else that plays team games does not want to have a fun time. Or maybe they find just the mere mention of cheese to be really hilarious, because we got cannon rushed, 6 pooled, dark templar rushed, several times in the 6 team games we played. All of which fucked up my builds and all of which frustrated me. The team games we did win were the ones without cheese, except the final match. Another friend had logged on, though this friend was as amateur as you could get. With only 7 games under his belt within the four days he has owned the game, my friend actually didn't do that bad, except that he really wasn't adding to the team. That meant when we got into a heated match in our final game, it didn't go to well. He did good for a new player, though. I'm proud of his progress! Toxic Slums was the map for our last match, a 4v4. The match was solely Terrans and Protoss. Not an ounce of cheese was found in the first minutes (and not for the whole match, either). Finally, a regular game! The only problem with a lot of Protoss in a team game...a lot of Void Rays. For a long 47 minutes, our teams struggled for the gold expansions in the middle. One of my Protoss teammates dominated with his blink stalker/Colossi build, while I dealt damage with siege tanks and a fuckton of marines. Our armies fought each other off constantly. It seemed like there wasn't a single moment in which an engagement wasn't going on. I was dropping marines into their bases, one of my Protoss teammates had his charge zealots making rounds in the middle of the map, etc. But their armies were just as strong as ours. It seemed like it would be a game of of who can survive for the longest, as the resources on the map were getting severely diminished. The fortieth minute hit and my team found itself slowly losing map control. Reapers were hitting our outside expansions just as I quickly grabbed a far right expansion that had no activity within it. The other team was able to land a huge drop into the weakest of our teammate's base, allowing the other armies to move in through the front, and though we would hold it off for several minutes, at that moment we lost the game and could never get it back. Our buildings began to get ravaged, just as I began an ultimately unsuccessful mission to nuke enemy bases with ghosts. The only nuke that would actually get used almost connected with a small cluster of thors. They escaped with only a few feet from the explosion. I was salty. After that game, which was finished with a number of positive comments from each team on how exciting and good the match turned out to be, everyone on my team logged off. My five hour session came to a close there, as well. I ended the day with 3 wins and 2 losses in 1v1; 2 wins and 1 loss in 3v3; and 0 wins and 3 losses in 4v4 for a total of 11 games played yesterday total. Because I only played 5 1v1 games yesterday as opposed to the 10 I usually play (it's assumed that 10 games means 10 1v1 games), but I still got practice either way, even while having some fun. And I definitely learned from the session, which is good. I found mostly that what I had found yesterday was 100% correct – don't do stupid builds. When I play textbook and solid, with good marco and micro, I have a good game, even if I don't win. That goes for team games as well – I dominated in one 3v3 match thanks to my smooth transition to mass thors in the late game. With several upgrades, my glacier of steel and rocketry, so to speak, steamrolled our opponents with little effort needed. And, obviously, I play better when I'm not getting cannon rushed or dark templar rushed, either. Tonight should be a good day for Starcraft. My dad is picking me up in the afternoon after my classes and his doctor's appointment. I'll eat lunch, try to catch a nap, watch some television, etc. But eventually I'll log in and, hopefully, I'll be playing for a very long time into the late hours of the night. I'll be taking this opportunity to better myself and get much more experience with the ton of games I plan to play. It'll be quite the lab session.
  16. (Original post date - 3/7/12) I've decided to post up the first of my practice journal, SC2 Lab Sessions. Though I've been practicing Starcraft 2 for a couple of months now, today is the first day I'll be going over my day. I feel like recapping what I did today will help me with practice and keep things in perspective. Hopefully some analysis will help me with future matches. Of course, it's sort of weird to just say, “HEY DIARY I PLAYED SOME STARCRAFT TODAY AND AND AND” and it's equally as weird to simply post on a blog about it, so let me give you some context. My goal is to become a top Starcraft 2 player. Being a freshman in college, it's surprising that I have a lot of free time, but I do. With it, I try to get in several hours of ladder play a day. If I miss a day, I go harder the next day. I am coached by a friend, I practice with peers, and I go over tons of replays, including my own. Today was another “lab session”, in which I sit down either in my room, at the library, wherever I feel like I can concentrate and play, and get to grinding. Currently, I'm a high-ranked Silver league Terran. I'm pretty booty. But I'm trying to get better! Usually what I like to do is to play at least ten games of SC2 a day. Once I've played them, I decide whether or not I have the time and/or will to continue forward. In a several hour session today, I got in 11 games. However, there were several games that lasted very long, so it seems skewed. In the amount of time I played today, I could have probably hit 15+ matches, but I digress. Here were the stats: 11 games played 4 wins 7 losses Longest win streak – 3 wins Longest loss streak – 7 losses The day started out pretty well, as I clocked in a solid victory in a TvP Shattered Temple match. It lasted for only twenty minutes, it was a great warm-up game. However, it didn't prepare me for my next seven games, all of which I would lose. Some were close, some were atrociously bad on my end. Ultimately, what mattered was that I knew I had a lot of work to do. What struck me was odd was my terrible TvZ play. The TvZ match-up had been pretty good for me earlier in the week as I began to figure out ways to deal with banelings and infestors, two units that were giving me a lot of trouble when I entered the Silver league. However, they weren't necessarily the problem this time around. Three games in a row, I found myself the victim of early game roach all-ins. As hard as I tried, I just could not keep up with the production of marines to keep them out of my base so I could stabilize. Bunkers didn't work, more marines didn't work, and I couldn't get tanks out in time. I felt at a loss. Fuckin' roaches... I began to analyze how I was playing. I went back to the replays and looked at what I had done, and I tried my best to figure out what it was that was going wrong. Still, it would take an outside party to help me out. I ended up asking a friend for help with the roaches, and I was told that marauders were a good solution to the roach pushes, except I'd have to get my second gas a bit earlier to maintain marauder production. I was really happy with learning this, despite not actually having any more TvZ problems after that streak because I had no more roach all-ins against me after I asked my friend how to deal with them. I felt a bit of improvement, mostly in my knowledge. But then I learned, the hard way and once again, that I still was not the most knowledgable in build orders. My coach, and many others, have told me how doing a simple build until Platinum league, while working on my macro, will make me a better player and only after then should I get into specific builds. Nevertheless, I still have the urge to try different builds, and I do. Sometimes I go more mech heavy, others I push harder with marines, still others I try a strong 1/1/1 or something like that. I like to mix it up, and it does work if I play well. However, when sometimes I lose because I'm not playing well, others it's because I am simply an idiot. In one particular game, I got a TvT match-up with close spawns. Thinking I was smart, I decided to go with reaper aggression while expanding and pumping out marines. However, I know absolutely nothing about reaper builds and the timings behind them, so by the time I had about 4-5 reapers (which you don't need that many of, by the way), his army was ready to defend it and large enough to clean it up quickly. He then realized I had a small army and home, so he walked over, squatted over my face, and took a dump. I had to gg my way out of there. So far, I was getting discouraged. The losses were piling up and I felt like I should just get off before I began to tilt. Finally, I got another TvZ pairing, and while I wasn't subject to a roach all-in, I had a long battle ahead of me. That was certainly not what I wanted – dealing with a maxed Zerg army can get difficult if the Zerg is maintaining a strong economy. My harassment skills are just not what they should be, so the Zerg was able to keep his economy strong and his army stronger. There's a chance I could have won the fight, but I'll never know, and that's because my army micro, particularly when I have my units clumped onto each other, is terrible. My tanks were sieged, my marines stood before them, my thors in the mix, medivacs flying above, and 4/5ths of my ground army was washed away as banelings rolled in. Unable to micro effectively, my army literally disappeared before my eyes. If I had taken the banelings out, his army would have been toast. But I didn't. My lack of micro was splash-damage heaven. Don't encourage the banelings, Husky! I realized that I need to be more precise and do those actions when I'm in a conflict like that. My multitasking and microing has gotten better, but I still know it's a problem. Things like that, though, are inexcusable. I should have scanned to know exactly where his army was, sieged up, and split my army so I could avoid as much splash damage as possible. Eventually, I lost my 7th game in a row. But I wasn't done yet. Shakuras Plateau was the map of choice, TvP was the match-up, and I found myself in another match. I was determined to win this one (against an opponent named SHEEK, cool name?), no matter the cost. Lately, I've found that I've been doing a much better job of taking out expansions, and that's exactly how I won this match. As our Terran and Protoss armies got close to maxing, with all tiers of units being represented, I decided to make my way to his farthest right expansion (he had four bases at this time) as I expanded to my third base. Sieging tanks up, I took out pylons while he oddly advanced into the tanks. He also had Archons, for some reason not using High Templars, and ultimately I was able to hold it off, but just barely. His Dark Templar harassment was shut down very effectively, as were his drops. I definitely learned a bit about the drops just by how I handled them, very proud of myself! After retreating a bit and bringing my army back in numbers, I hit the same expansion again, fully taking it out this time. Raging, my opponent began to curse me out and simply gg'd, giving me the win without me even stepping foot in his natural expansion or main base. Granted, my ground army had 3/3 upgrades and my air units getting close to it, and I was on a gold mineral expansion with bunkers churning out marines, but at least he could have invited me into his natural for a house warming. Needless to say, I was happy, and after that I got another win on Metalopolis. Ten games down. I decided to stay in the library for one more game. I wouldn't leave for another hour. You see, it was a long struggle in a TvT match-up, but a rather uneventful one. Our armies maxed out, fought in small battles a few times, but nothing actually happened until the half hour mark, when I began to push out toward the middle of the map after he successfully took out my third expansion. He probably got excited, seeing as my main and natural were getting close to empty in terms of minerals. However, I had expanded to a fourth and fifth base on another corner of the map, giving me much more of a steady income. And once I was able to push through to his expansions, using the siege tanks I had to keep his army away from my thors, his income literally stopped. However, he was able to get another base going, and while I pumped out marines and was at max, as well as repairing my thors and tanks, he tried to max his army, as well. He got close to putting the gap a 50 supply. His army may have eventually matched mine, but after baiting him a bit with marines, he got edgy. Then I dropped into his natural to take out gas-mining SCVs and some buildings, prompting him to take all of his marines to stop this. This is when I moved closer to his sieged tanks. For some reason, just as I sieged up, he un-sieged and moved in, getting dealt tons of damage before he actually attacked. By the time his entire mass of marines raced back to help, it was too late. I had 6 more thors on the way and about two dozens marines marching closer and closer. Without so much as a good game, he left and the victory was mine. Ultimately, while my record became worse, I learned a lot from this session. Here's what I learned: 1) Roach all-ins are very effective if you're not prepared to deal with it in the early game. Scouting for a roach warren and seeing little gas being taken can help find a roach all-in before it happens. Marauders mixed in with marines are a good option in holding off these kinds of attacks. 2) Don't try builds you don't know, stick with what you know. 3) Don't build too many reapers if you plan to harass with them, and actually have an army being built, or make your economy stronger, while making reapers so you can hold off a counter-attack if need be. 4) Microing large armies is key. Do not keep your units bunched up against banelines. Use stimpack to get out of there if need be, and don't clump up large mech units next to each other. 5) Scan and scout often. Make sure you know of all transitions, tech, upgrades, everything. 6) Don't let the opponent stabilize. Constantly make sure you know what is going on after you deal a large blow to the enemy. Keep the pressure on, keep the attack on (if you can) so that way the opponent doesn't bring it back. Don't blow opportunities to deal a game-winning knock-out. Knowing these things, hopefully I'll do better tomorrow. I definitely felt like today's session was a good one. I learned a lot, even though I lost a lot. Winning is good, but you learn more when you are defeated. Until I'm the perfect SC2 player (which I will be, curse you DRG!), I will always have more to learn. That's how it goes. Tomorrow, there's more SC2 to play. Fuck yeah.
  17. Handicap

    Application

    Name: Brian Blalock Age (minimum 16): 22 Gamertags (for all systems you own): Hanndicap Do you have access to a computer and e-mail on a daily basis? yes What are your screen names (all that apply)? (AIM, MSN, Skype, Steam, Xfire) Aim: Wheelchairman24 = Aim, Skype = brianb1989 Link to your Twitter page (twitter required):http://twitter.com/#...!/coachhandicap Link to your Google+ or Facebook page (at least one required):http://www.facebook....p?id=1200870283 How frequently do you use Facebook, Twitter, Digg and/or Google+? almost everyday How did you hear about vVv Gaming? Were you referred to the site? If so, by whom? from a friend, yes, by vVv Roxy Who do you know currently in vVv Gaming? How do you know them? Guy Trecks, Tingez, Arkaine, quite a few others. through one of my teammates Why are you interested in joining vVv Gaming? i think its great what you guys are doing for disabled gamers that no other communities are willing to do and that just shows that you care. which means a lot. i love the community here as well, all the people are nice and helpful Adding value is an important aspect of being in vVv Gaming. How will you, personally, add value? i have a great personality and i love to be of any assistance to anyone that needs it. Are you familiar with vVv's Geek to Me articles and Losers Bracket Podcast? If so, what are some of your favorites and why? just listened to the latest one about providence and it was really good, bout to go listen to some of the others How long have you been playing video games? since i was 6 How many hours per week do you devote to gaming?50-60 hrs What�s the hardest game you�ve ever beaten? super mario brothers on the snes. it was hard when i was a kid and i still struggle with it, lol. What games coming out are you looking forward to play and why? class 3 bc its a mmo zombie survival game, gotham city impostors bc its just gonna be a great game, and operation raccoon city, bc its another zombie squad shooter What are your hobbies and interests outside of gaming? i like to write short stories and poems, i like watching movies and playing board games Where do you see yourself next year at this time? hopefully out of college and being independent What kind of competitive tournament experience do you have? locals and mlg tournaments Have you attended any national events (MLG, WCG, CPL)? yes How long have you been playing competitively? since i was 16 What was your best competitive moment? What was your worst? coaching sLu to 13th at dallas 09. and my worst is playing in the ffa at dallas 09 and getting knocked out 1st rd. What do you hope to achieve, competitively? i hope to achieve a name for disabled gamers everywhere and not just my name. disabled gamers are just as good as regular gamers, we have some struggles but we find ways to deal with them What was your toughest competition? battle of the baddest for bad company 2 How do you see vVv Gaming adding value to you? it will give me and awesome community of gamers that will help if needed plus a ton of new friends to play with Please understand that all the personal information you're submitting is important and necessary to supporting and knowing you as a gamer. We first need to know a few things about your disability. What is the medical term for your disability? (i.e., SCI, MS, amputee, etc.) Spinal Muscular Atrophy Type 3 How long have u been gaming with your disability? since i was 5 We are trying establish and understand a players physical potential when it comes to playing games. We do that by a number-system (i.e., Murderball). with your upper two extremities, and how many functions can you execute simultaneously. A C-5 level quadriplegic only moving his arms and no finger movement,would have two functions being both arms. This function number does not include the head. If you're using your head to control a device, that does not count to your function number. You would be a zero on the function scale if you are only using your head. This scale is based on a zero through ten, please state what you think your function number is based on the material above, and explain why? going by the numbers i have 4 i think. i can use my arms and fingers but at an extent. my fingers after awhile start getting numb where i cant press anything down or move them, much like my arms when they get tired.
  18. Apex 2012, one of the competitive Super Smash Bros community's biggest events ever, was supposed to bring back the hype and excitement that, according to many community members, had left the scene over the past couple of years. It certainly did just that – the event brought in over 700 unique Super Smash Bros Brawl and Super Smash Bros Melee players, as well as several hundred more individuals that entered Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition, Mortal Kombat, Super Smash Bros (for the Nintendo 64), and Pokemon. However, what Apex 2012 also did was cast a shadow of doubt across both of the major Smash communities. For Melee, this was due to the grand finals of the Melee singles competition. In the final match-up between two of the best players the game has ever seen, Armada of Sweden and Hungrybox of Florida, what was hoped to be a chaotic showdown of skill and merit became a slow match that progressed for more than an hour, an excruciating amount of time for any game that isn't Starcraft 2, League of Legends, or games of that nature. The hype was certainly there. This was because Hungrybox used Jigglypuff – while this isn't usually a problem, it was for Armada, who's character (Peach) has trouble dealing with Jigglypuff. Thus, Armada switched to Young Link, a projectile-based character, for grand finals, turning a hype match into a morbidly slow camp fest that lasted way too long than it should have. On the other hand, the Brawl community didn't have a problem with one particular match, but the result of the entire tournament itself. Some foreground: Apex 2012 marked the beginning of the end for the best character in Brawl, Metaknight. As of the end of the event, the American community banned the character from all tournaments using the “Unity Ruleset.” Any tournament part of that movement can not have Metaknight legal during competition, though non-Unity tournaments can still have the character legal if they so choose. Going into Apex, this didn't seem to be a problem. The pro-ban group was strong and growing in numbers, but then Apex came to a close with the 1st and 2nd place finishers being Japanese players. In Japan, the rule set is much different from the one found in the United States (heck, even the ones found in other parts of the world, as well). In Japan, Metaknight is legal, but also the timer is longer and most stages are banned from competitive play (on the other hand, the US allows over a dozen stages to be played on in some areas). The American community, seeing Japan's proficiency in the game, has now somewhat turned on its heel. Many players are now supporting the anti-ban movement, even some going as far as to advocate the US picking up the Japanese rule set for all tournaments, especially because many American players are now interested in attending Sun Rise, a tournament in Tokyo this August. The players definitely want to be prepared, no matter what it takes. Ocean was one of the many Japanese players to take down American greats like Mew2King. For Melee, some are advocating change to avoid slow game play For Brawl, players want to see change to stand up to the apparently superior Japanese players. But which side is right? Melee is certainly in a tough position here, especially because, besides from the grand finals, the entire tournament ran smoothly and matches were completed on time without any hassle. Grand finals seemed to be just a fluke. Though it is certainly reasonable that lowering the amount of lives, or “stocks”, each character has in a round (competitive Melee currently allots four stocks to each player per game) could create a better competitive experience, it doesn't seem like one match is enough proof to change a system that has been in place for around ten years or so. Then there's Brawl. Obviously if Nairo, the fifteen year-old Metaknight player from New Jersey who placed third in singles, had beaten out the top two Japanese players and took first place, there wouldn't be any discussion of unbanning Metaknight and mirroring the Japanese rule set But what happened, happened, and many players are certainly not ignoring this issue. It's certainly not a guarantee that non-Japanese players will get better just by adopting a new rule set or keeping Metaknight legal. And considering the American community just banned Metaknight, unbanning him immediately without properly evaluating how his ban would change the metagame of Brawl would be a very knee-jerk move. While it seems like the Melee community may not make any changes at all, attempts to change things are certainly breaking the surface in the Brawl community. Whether these changes become concrete within the next few months or not remains to be seen, but what we do know is this – the Melee community has been around for around ten years and will do anything to keep itself alive. And the Brawl community will do whatever it takes to grow and avoid becoming stale, and the American Brawlers specifically will pay any cost to take out the Japanese on their home turf. With that in mind, the games we play competitively may be drastically different in the next year or even in less time. And not many are completely sure if the routes being taken are the right ones to explore. Images courtesy of Robert Paul. Check out his Apex 2012 gallery at: http://robertpaul.smugmug.com/Events/APEX-2012
  19. 1. Luke Sassu 2. 16 in about a week 3. SlippySocks 4. www.twitter.com/slippysocks 5.http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1364946301 6. Facebook Every day 7. Stumbled upon it one day on starcraft 2 ladder met vVv Zorro 8. vVv Zorro asked him for help in game and he was really cool about it and helped. 9. A way to help improve my starcraft 2 play, and i think it would be cool. 10. I will join with one of the most kick ass personalities that someone can have, Will be open and honest to people. 11. not very fimiliar 12. since i was 5 13. At least an hour, if not more 14. plat with 373 points, recently got bumped in 15. competative ,but can be casual 16. Dead island cause its a brand new style of zombie fps 17. Mountain biking, Paintball, and walking. 18. Going through junior year of highschool 19. vVv Editor.
  20. Today the developer completed the last items we wanted done before launch, and we made the final payment. We extended their support for 60 days, so if you find anything not working please let us know by creating a new thread for each issue in this forum: POST NEW THREAD HERE Attached is the signed copy of the work order, so everyone knows their money went to good use. vVv Gaming Order & Invoice.pdf This is YOUR site. Take ownership and let us know how to make it better. http://www.vvv-gaming.com
  21. A few minutes ago, ItoxBlade (https://www.facebook.com/ItoxBlade) the best Brawl player in Venezuela challenged me to an Online Match for 20$ Dollars. I told him it would lag very badly and that I didn't wanted to do the money match (Because I was very tired. I didn't sleep and my hands were really cold). He INSISTED to play the MM "RIGHT NOW". I said "Ok I guess. Let's do it". I beat him 3-0. I beat his Snake (Smashville), Olimar (Final Destination) and Meta Knight (Battlefield) with my Meta Knight. I saved the replay for Game 3 against his Meta Knight. He called me a "Hacker" because "My attacks were stronger" and "I couldn't DI your hits". And he won't pay me a single cent. You were a really cool person and I didn't see something like this coming, I'm very dissapointed from you Itoxblade.
  22. Hello everyone! What's up? I've just been interviewed for Apex 2012, show some love and check it out! http://allisbrawl.co...st.aspx?id=1296 ¡Thanks for your time and have a nice day!
  23. After just over two months, the latest episode of Directional Influence has finally been released. You can check it out here: http://www.vvv-gaming.com/forum/topic/53169-directional-influence-episode-47-back-in-your-ear-canals/page__pid__483921#entry483921 Moving on. I'm actually quite happy that the episode got released when it did. It feels right. Being gone for two months, not doing my podcast left a void in my weekly routine that I couldn't really shake. Though I have been very busy over the course of the past two months, free time never became an issue to the point that I wouldn't have any time to do the show. Essentially, what it came down to was the quality of the show. Physically, I could do record the episodes, but the quality of the recordings were absolutely terrible, at some points so unclear it wasn't even worth listening to. For putting so much effort into the show for over a year, it wasn't worth trying to struggle with what I had at my disposal. However, my situation is now much better, both in terms of quality of internet, amount of work, and more. So getting this episode of Directional Influence was actually not very hard, at all. I was able to interview vVv Zero, this episode's special guest, quickly and easily last Thursday night, while the rest of the episode was recording Monday night with myself and Will, Zero not included. Fun fact: This episode wasn't even the episode that was going to originally be Episode 47. Episode 47 had two other incarnations. The first, which would have released two weeks after Episode 46, had no special guests planned. Instead, Will and myself had topics including the Metaknight situation and college Smash scenes, plus our usually screwing around that the podcast is known for. The second variation, which was attempted a week after the aforementioned episode was to be recorded, would have featured vVv Zero (for the interview that eventually would be recorded for the final release) and vVv Chibosempai. Both variations never left the drawing board. Concerning this episode, the only problem I ended up finding was the settings I use to maintain the quality found in all previous DI episodes bar the video episodes. To help settle into my new environment when recording the show, I fiddled with some settings to hopefully make the sound files easier to work with, as well as easier to record. As it turns out, my original settings would have been just fine and the ones I ended up using created slightly poorer quality in the sound recording. Thus, segments of the episode sound a bit different than others, a problem which will not show up in future DI episodes. Looking towards the future, Directional Influence seems to be back on track. We'll continue with our weekly show as we have since 2010 and, as of right now, nothing will stop us for doing just that. Not only that, but we continue to work on our live show at this year's Apex 2012, which will be an absolutely awesome experience. Overall, I'm happy with Episode 47. Not only does it feel great to have it finally out the door and in the hands of the public, but overall the show is a true return for the show. We've changed the podcast quite a bit: trying to get more organized, going the route of live video, etc. And, as many of you know, we've had "hiatuses" and "returns" over the past few months as we've tried to re-invent ourselves. But, to be honest, I think what we have going on here is a great thing - we're finally back to doing what Directional Influence was originally created to do: to talk about competitive Smash, feature awesome games, and give the community quality entertainment. So, yeah, we're back. Finally.
  24. ============================================== vVv ZeRo's Tournament Blog #9: The Hedgehog's Lair ============================================== Hello everyone! How's everyone doing? Well? That's great to hear! Well, today I am going to tell you everything that went down on my last LAN tournament in Chile (The Hedgehog's Lair)! Okay, so let's get started! ======================================================= September 9th, 2011, 9:00 AM - "I think I need more money for this" ======================================================= I bought my bus ticket for 1pm to get to Santiago at 6-6:30 PM. I ate my breakfast, went to the shower, and had my bag/equipment ready at 11 AM. I still had 2 hours to take my bus, however, I was short on cash for this tournament (I needed 20$ to move around Santiago, so at that moment, it was an "adventure) so my mom told to go with her to a gas station on the way to the bus station. She would do a "trick" to get those 20$. Basically, in the gas station, you can buy with a credit card. However, they don't have the machine/or something necessary to do that in the gas station, so, you have to pay what you're going to buy at a store next to the gas station. Then, that store gives you the money in cash to buy that at the gas station. So, my mom paid those 20$ with the credit card at that store, and received those 20$ but in cash. She gave me those 20$ for my trip <3 (Love you mom!). Okay, all set and ready! The trip from there was quite easy, just a Colectivo (0.7$) to the center of the city and then walk about 5 streets to get to the bus station. I said goodbye to my mom, and of course, a big THANKS. I love, love, love when you can travel in the bus with no one on the seat next to you. And, well, the bus was about to get moving, and no one was on the seat next to me! I was about to smile, when a guy said "Excuse me". Oh man, almost! I usually spend my trips listening to music (Random songs that I like, like One Your Name, Blow me Away, what I've done, or the soundtrack of the Ace Attorney series), playing Resident Evil/Ace Attorney, or well, sleeping, haha. I had some nice bread with Chicken for the trip and orange juice for my lunch (yay). For some reason, halfway through the trip I started to feel really, really bad. I had a "cold" fever, and my stomach was "about" to explode. That went for an hour or so, but after that, for some weird reason, I felt great. I got to Santiago at 6:10 PM. I had to visit my Aunt's office to pick up her camera (to take pictures at the tournament!). I had to stop at the center of Santiago, and walk in one of the most dangerous streets in Santiago, and, walking with my travel bag . However, nothing happened! I picked up the camera, and then I took the subway to Ivan-Solid's house (the tournament was going to be in his house. Well, technically, not his house. Ivan's house has a big backyard, and a house on the backyard. The house is currently empty, so Ivan used that for the tournament). I got to Ivan's house around 7:30 PM. After greeting him, we played Brawl for an hour or two. After playing a lot of All Is Brawl all I wanted was to have a LAN session of practice before the tournament, and that's exactly what I got! Ivan organized a little “Smash meeting” in the place where the tournament was going to be held tomorrow (the empty house on the backyard of Ivan’s House). The smash meeting consisted of: FBI, Cloud, Kalas and Rollo. We played A LOT. I won a 1$ dollar money match against Cloud, my Fox vs his R.O.B. I won 3-1! They also played a little “prank” on me. I had to go to the bathroom, so I leaved my controller next to the Wii. When I came back, no controller was there! I asked “Yo guys, where‘s my controller” “I don’t know” was the answer of everyone. After 10 minutes searching, I started to get annoyed. Ivan asked me to help with the dinner of that night, to which I agreed. After helping him, he showed me where my controller was. ON THE ROOM NEXT TO WHERE we were playing! Haha, so funny. I love how blind I am when searching for anything! Hahahahah! I went to the bed at 2 AM. =============================================== September 10th, 2011, 9:00 AM - "Tournament day, yay!" =============================================== We waked up at 9 AM to prepare everything for the tournament (tables, TV's, Wiis, etc.). Then, right after we were done (11 AM) the people started to arrive for the tournament. After paying the venue fee and the singles Brawl and Mid Tier Singles Brawl, I was ready to go! I warmed up for about half an hour with Snake (The best Falco in Chile) and PiPn (a good MK/Snake player). Right after this, Mid Tier Brawl singles started. ========================== Mid Tier Brawl Singles - Pools ========================== Mid-Tier Brawl Singles is a tournament in which you can only use Mid-Tier characters. In Smash, you have a "tier list” (based on tournament results of the USA, or your smash area) on that list you can know which characters are the "best" for a tournament. For this tournament I used Fox. I started to use Fox in Brawl like, 2 days before this tournament. I didn’t master the "bread and butter" combos of Fox properly, or some of his tricks. But for some reason, I was playing very well with the character and catching people off guard with a lot of MY tricks. I warmed up with Fox (and got some last-minute practice too) with Dragon, who used to main Sonic in 2010-Early 2011 before changing to Meta Knight. He wasn’t able to take a single game from my Fox with his Sonic, so he started to use his secondary character, Diddy Kong. But the result was the same; I didn’t lose a single game! This last-minute practice session was very good for me, if I could beat very easily the person who will probably place Top 2 at the tournament, it’s because I will probably win the tournament! Right after about 7-8 games, the referees started calling the players for their matches in the pools. ------------------------------- Pools Round 1 : Mira ------------------------------- Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Yoshi (Mira) Stage: Final Destination Video: N/A Summary of the match: For some reason the Tournament Organizer allowed Yoshi in the mid tier tournament. I didn’t knew how to play the Yoshi Match Up as Fox, so at the start of the match I just spamed lasers on the other side of the stage to make him approach. And then I would jump, shine, and D-Air over his head and then land on his back. Then I would follow that with an U-Tilt and combo from there. Or block/dodge his approach and then punish accordingly with a Grab/UP-Smash7D-Smash. That was my main strategy, and it worked very well. I won with solid 2 stocks lead (I can’t remember the %). ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Round 2: ??? (I can’t remember his name. I’m sorry) ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Pit (???) Stage: Battlefield Video: N/A Summary of the match: I believe that Fox has the upper-hand in projectiles power in this match up. Fox’s lasers are faster than Pit’s arrows, and Fox can use his reflector to reflect back Pit’s arrow. So at the start, I just camped with lasers and reflected with the shine any incoming arrows. He had to approach, and that’s exactly the game I wanted to play: A hit and run one! I would make him to approach, and Pit has limited options approaching: He can roll behind you, run and then shield, do an aerial attack (which is very unsafe) dodge or do a random side-b. I would just dodge and grab/U-Tilt or shield grab his approaches, and then follow up from there. I got a good lead, and then I got an early kill with an Up-Smash. He started to fish really bad to get a killing move on me, so I was able to deal a really big chunk of damage because of his obvious actions. And then I got another Up-Smash kill. After that, he got a good a F-Smash attack to me, that I didn’t reacted on time, which killed my first stock. I then played the same strategy, which worked really well again. He couldn’t keep up with it, and I got some really good D-Air combos, and improvised aerial combos (F-Air to U-Air for example) and then I finished the game with a good running Up-Smash kill. I won with 2 stocks and 80-90% percent of damage. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Round 3: ??? (I can’t remember his name. I’m sorry) ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Wolf(???) Stage:Smashville Video: N/A Summary of the match: Like with Pit, I also believe that Fox has the upper-hand in the projectile side of the match up. I started the match shooting lasers from the ground because Wolf can’t run really fast, so he instantly got about 10% of damage. Right after that I jumped above him, D-Air, and then combo from there. My opponent wasn’t really experienced in the Fox match up, so I had a really easy time finding openings to do Fox combos, and finish off every stock from him. I don’t have too much to say in this match. I won with 2 stocks and 10-20% of damage, a solid win overall. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Round 4: Phantom ------------------------------------------------------------------------ https://fbcdn-sphoto...140045872_n.jpg Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Kirby (Phantom) Stage: Battlefield Video: N/A Summary of the match: I was really worried about this match, because I didn’t know how to play the Kirby Match Up! I also figured out that Kirby can crouch below Fox’s lasers! So I couldn’t shoot lasers this match, so I had to approach in order to win (and Kirby had a really good grab combo, so one mistake would mean a huge chunk of damage). My general strategy was to bait Phantom into doing a defensive reaction, like shielding, rolling or spot dodging, and then I would punish that with a D-Air to U-Tilt combo, or a simple Grab to D-Throw and following up from there. It worked great for the first stock, but Phantom adapted to that, and started being much more aggressive, and reacting before me. So I adapted to that, and started to predict and punish his reactions instead of just waiting for him to react first. We both played really well, and for that, we were tied for the whole game. My strategy to get the kill was really simple; I would not do anything, and stand still. Then I would wait for him to either attack me from the Air, or roll/dodge and then I would run or U-Smash him on reaction. Two things would happen, we would trade (which is what I wanted) or one of us would die, and most of the time, it would be him the person flying to the sky from Fox’s U-Smash! For this, I had a really good advantage anytime we were both at a high percent of damage. I managed to keep my overall game strategy solid through the first two stocks, but Phantom would quickly come back and tie up the game. Phantom got a really good combo string on my last stock, and then he kept me off the stage for a while, racking up about 100+% of damage just on that. I quickly got some of Fox’s D-Air to U-Tilt combos, and then I would predict his landing reaction (Attack, dodge or jump) and punish from there. I got him to 100% of damage while I was at 130%. He got with a D-Smash, and somehow, I did a really incredibly DI surviving the hit! I then, did a surprise Side-B to the top platform, and made my way to the ground again evading Phantom’s aerial attacks. Any Smash attack at this point of the game would mean the end of the game. I played really carefully, searching for any D-Air to U-Smash opportunity. Phantom was just crouching and waiting for me to react first. He made the fatal mistake of rolling away from me while he was close to me, I reacted to that and U-Smashed him for the win! After a good “Let’s GO!” I shaked Phantom’s hand for the good game we just played. I advanced trough pools with a 4-0 record! Beating Phantom in a close game felt really good, which made me feel much more comfortable with Fox. I was very excited to play in the bracket, I knew I could win! After pools, I had the time to eat my lunch, and watch some Melee Tournament matches. It was quite impressive to see Felipe_9535 (that’s his Gamertag) OWNING with Donkey Kong, who is not a really good character in the tournament side of Melee. Felipe took 3rd using Donkey Kong and Mr. Game & Watch (Another “bad” character for competitive Melee) which is a really impressive feat! After watching some sets, the bracket play started. ============================ Brawl: Mid-Tier Bracket play ============================ ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Bracket Round 1: Cloud ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs R.O.B. (Cloud) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Halberd Video: N/A Summary of the match: Cloud is a pretty good R.O.B. main from Santiago. I was going very confident in this match, because of the 1$ Money Match we played last night. I knew how to move around in the match up, but I knew that my inexperience with Fox could betray me at any moment, so I played safe at first, and didn’t went for anything crazy or fancy that could cost me the match. I started camping with lasers, and I just shined his Gyro/Lasers, so he had to approach. R.O.B. is not very good at approaching, so I just baited him into the air, and then I would do a Phantasm to the other side to keep shooting lasers. After a few times (and some occasional, F-Airs and D-Air combos), I got him pretty quickly to kill percent (100+ %). It was really easy to kill Cloud, I would bait him to approach me with lasers, and I would U-Smash his Dash Attack/Rolls/Spot Dodges, or Shield + U-Smash out of shield his N-Airs. I basically repeated the same strategy 3 times, and won game 1 with 2 stocks and 30-40%. For some weird reason, he counterpicked me to Halberd. This made everything much easier. Halberd has a lower ceiling, so that means, that anyone dies off the top much earlier (porcent wise). So instead of killing R.O.B. at 100+ %, I could kill him 10% earlier, at 90+ %, which was a very good advantage. I repeated almost the same strategy, but tweaked some things like more surprise aerial attacks, and better D-Throw follow ups. Cloud couldn’t adapt in the end, and fall behind pretty fast. I won with 2 stocks and 80-90%. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Winners Bracket Semi-Finals: Dragon ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Sonic (Dragon) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Yoshi’s Island Video: N/A Summary of the match: I was also very confident going into this match, thanks to the friendlies before pools. Again, baiting my opponent with lasers at the start was a very good idea. The only “catch” in this match was that Sonic is the fastest character in the game, so he can travel from one edge of the stage, to the other in just a blink. This means, I couldn’t spam lasers too much. My strategy was to make him to approach thanks to Fox’s lasers, and punish Sonic’s Spin Dash trajectory with a B-Air, or Lasers depending of where he went. And then I would U-Smash Sonic’s Spin Dash to finish off his stocks, or punish a well-read roll/spot dodge/Blocked Aerial Attack with an Up-Smash. Dragon couldn’t adapt to my strategy in Smashville, and it was an easy game 1 win to me. I won with 2 stocks and 10-20%. I banned PictoChat because I didn’t want to deal with Sonic’s tricks on PictoChat. He counterpicked me to Yoshi’s Island. Now, I know that Sonic’s Spin Dash gets powered up with slopes like in Yoshi’s Island. And that Sonic’s like to stay at the edge of the stage charging a Spin Dash. I just stayed at the opposite edge of the stage and spammed lasers that would hit Sonic’s Spin Dash. He would have to approach, and it would be an easy punish/hit for me. That’s how this game went, pretty much. Dragon failed to adapt once again, and I won this game without much trouble. I won with 2 stocks and 60-70%. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Winners Bracket Finals: Hb2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Peach (Hb2) Stage: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Jungle Japes Game 3: Yoshi’s Island Video: N/A Summary of the match: I was kind of worried in this match, because Hb2 could use his current main character in this tournament. While I had to use a character I didn’t had any experience with. I knew that Peach could combo Fox with Floating D-Airs really hard, so I would do a long jump over him, shined/jumped to mix up, and I would land with a D-Air over Peach’s head and combo from there. And I would make him to approach thanks to Fox’s Lasers. Hb2 started to dodge, and F-Air my D-Airs, and started to out camp me with well positioned Turnips. But I adapted to that, and changed my style to something more aggressive. I started to F-Air/B-Air Peach when she was floating, and that worked out really well to rack up damage (F-Air) and finish off stocks (B-Air). My main strategy to finish off Peach’s stocks was to bait him to float thanks to Fox’s lasers, and I would stand close to him and predict where he would land, or if he would F-Air to Up-Smash it immediately. I won game 1 with 1 stock and 30-40%. He counterpicked me to Jungle Japes. I felt really confident when he said that his Counterpick was going to be Jungle Japes. This is Jungle Japes: http://images.wikia....JungleJapes.jpg As you can see, there are two platforms who are a little bit elevated from the main platform in the middle. This means that I could run away thanks to Fox’s speed and Phantasm, and spam lasers to make him approach. And he would have to approach me in the Air if I camped in any of the platforms. And a Peach approaching from this position means easy Up-Smashes! While this stage sounded really well “in paper”, in the game, it was very different. Hb2 completely changed his style, and camped really well with Peach turnips, cancelled my Phantasms with Peach’s D-Air/N-Air, and combo from there, and he would do a low float to F-Air me really safely. I started to lose the match, but I quickly came back due to a nice string of attacks I got on his second stock which ended on a nice F-Smash to get him to his last stock. I was on my last stock, with 90% while Hb2 was with his last stock too, but with 0%. I played extremely careful, and camped really hard to rack up easy damage. I got him to 40% with just lasers and well-timed Phantasms. Then he got me with a F-Air that ALMOST killed me. I made my way back to the main platform, and blocked his obvious F-Air, and then I F-Aired Out of Shield to get him to the air. Then I U-Aired him, and then I spammed him with lasers when he was falling down (I didn’t wanted to get N-Aired, so I took the safe route and spammed lasers). After some “camping wars” he was at 115%, and I was at 160%. I jumped to him, and started doing full hops in front of him. He started to float away from me baiting me to do an Up-Smash to kill me with a F-Air. I “unexpectedly”, ran up to him, turned around, jumped, and B-Aired him in the face to win the game! He counterpicked me to Yoshi’s Island. Hb2, sadly, lost all momentum in game 2, so I won pretty easily in game 3. I won with 2 stocks and 80-90%. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Grand Finals: Ivan-Solid ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Fox (vVv ZeRo) vs Sheik/Sonic (Ivan-Solid) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Smashville Game 3: PictoChat Video: N/A Summary of the match: I was very confident going into the grand finals. I beat Ivan’s Sonic very easily on the last night’s friendlies. However, he surprised me a lot. He went Sheik in game 1 and 2. Sheik is a very hard counter against Fox. Sheik can do some ridiculous combos (10-80%) with her EASIEST move to land; F-Tilt. So any F-Tilt basically means “almost” my stock. I played extremely safe and campy, and NEVER leaved the platform of Smashville. Making him to approach to me was my only option to win. He still got one deadly F-Tilt combo on me on my second stock, which dealt about 90% of damage. Besides of evading the F-Tilt combo, Ivan’s Sheik was really simple. For the kill, I would wait for him to jump, or corner him in the edge of the stage and punish his roll/spot dodge with an Up-Smash. I won with 1 stock and 10-20%. He counterpicked me to Smashville again (I banned Final Destination because there aren’t platforms where I can hide). But he made one change this time around. Instead of playing Sheik the whole time, he would change to Zelda (Sheik/Zelda “share the same character” if you press Down-B you can change between characters) to finish off my stock. This match was really easy, everytime he changed to Zelda; I would play really aggressive and deal A LOT of damage. And I used the same strategy in game 1 against his Sheik. I won with 2 stocks and 90-100%. He counterpicked me to PictoChat with Sonic, his main character. I played the same way like I did against Dragon, and it worked perfectly! I won quite easily with 2 stocks and 100-110%. Yay, I won Brawl Mid-Tier Singles! Immediately after Brawl Mid-Tier Singles Grand Finals I had to play in Brawl Singles pools (The pools started a little bit before Mid-Tier Grand Finals). =================== Brawl: Singles Pools =================== ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Round 1 -Mira ------------------------------------------------------------------------ https://fbcdn-sphoto...133846229_n.jpg Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Falco (Mira) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Video: N/A Summary of the match: I like to play the Falco match-up really safe with raising D-Airs, and well-timed tornados to shield poke Falco’s shield. Then, after I get 50+ Damage (Which means no Chain Grab) I change my style to a grounded one where I mix up Dash Attacks, Forward Rolls, and F/D-Tilts to get around Falco’s strong ground game. One grab means 50+ % of damage + follow ups, and Meta Knight can die starting from 100% by Falco’s Up-Smash. This means, one grab, more than half the damage Falco needs to kill Meta Knight. There isn’t much to say about this match, I played really well and won with 2 stocks and 30-40% of damage. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Round 2 - Zean ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Meta Knight (Zean) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Video: Summary of the match: Zean’s Meta Knight surprised me a lot in this game. I have a hard time against his style of play in the Meta Knight ditto; he sometimes goes for weird or unsafe options that usually work great against me. But I kept my composure the entire game, and adapted accordingly. For more details, I invite you to watch the video above. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Round 3 - Aleman ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Zero Suit Samus (Aleman) Stages: Game 1: Battlefield Video: N/A Summary of the match: I have literally 0 experience against Zero Suit Samus. I have played a ZSS player only once in a tournament before this match (Chilean National Tournament, WBR2, Dual, I won 2-1). This gave me a lot of troubles in the match, as I’m not used to how to play ZSS at all. I know what the character can do, but I always get hit by things or options I am not expecting by my lack of experience in the match up. Aleman is a MvC3 player, who randomly plays Brawl from time to time. I didn’t played very well in this match, and Aleman capitalized every one of my mistakes really well. The match was pretty even most of the time, but at the last stock I started to get used to his style of play, where I got some great D-Throw reads, and Air Dodge reads to rack up a lot of damage, and build up my lead. I got him quickly to 120%, while I was just at 44%. I cornered him to the edge of Battlefield, where he made the mistake of rolling behind me, so I just D-Smashed to win the game! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Round 4 - Cloud ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs R.O.B. (Cloud) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Video: N/A Summary of the match: While Meta Knight has a great advantage over R.O.B. I just can’t play comfortable against R.O.B., I do well, but I can’t feel comfortable due to R.O.B.’s projectiles and “feel” of the character. Against R.O.B. I usually shield all of his projectiles, enter to his zone, and then punish from there. Meta Knight can use his speed to get around R.O.B. really easily, spot dodging, or rolling R.O.B’s attacks are great ways to “get in” also. I also like to pressure R.O.B’s shield with rising D-Airs, and then tornado ROB’s shield to “eat” the weak shield. The priority in the match-up is to get ROB in the air, or off the stage. I managed to get Cloud out off the stage in all 3 of his stocks. And all 3 of those times ended in a successful kill. ROB’s recovery is quite unique, because he literally “flies” and it can travel great distances, and attack like he normally would in the air. However, he can only fly for a set time, if he gets over that time limit, he would fall to his doom. I keep ROB off the stage with well-timed D-Airs over his head to get him away of the stage, and then if he recovers low, I would do a Shuttle Loop in reverse in the edge to hit him (He can’t air dodge). And if he recovers high, well timed Shuttle Loops, or U-Airs + D-Airs are more than enough to keep him off the stage. I won with 3 stocks and 140%. ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Round 5 - Gacel ------------------------------------------------------------------------ *LOL at my face* Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Meta Knight (Gacel) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Video: N/A Summary of the match: I don’t have too much to say about this match, but I have never seen or played Gacel at any tournament in Santiago, so he was probably a new player. I played really well the ditto, keeping the right distance, and blocking + punishing everything accordingly. My F/D-Tilt and spot dodge game was on point during this match! I won with 2 stocks and 20-30%. After pools I had the time to use the bathroom, and eat something before Bracket Play started. After eating, the referees were calling the players for their matches. My first round was against Hb2! ==================== Brawl: Singles Bracket ==================== ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Bracket: Bracket Round 1 – Hb2 ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Marth (Hb2) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Castle Siege Video: Summary of the match: Marth and Meta Knight are pretty even, but Meta Knight has the advantage on the off-stage game, and speed. Meta Knight’s tornado beats any aerial attack of Marth if the tornado is in front of Marth. So, my main strategy was to get Marth right above me with a tornado, roll + Grab/F-Tilt/UpB (which is Marth’s weak spot and Meta Knight’s best position) and then punish from there. For more details, check out the video! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Bracket: Winners’s Round 1 – Ivan-Solid ------------------------------------------------------------------------ *Not the best quality. Sorry for that!* Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Sonic (Ivan-Solid) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 1: Frigate Orpheon Video: Summary of the match: I don’t know what happened with Ivan in this match. The night before the tournament we were having some great and close matches. I think he was too nervous in this set. Well, my general strategy is to cancel any Spin Dash with a Tornado, Shield + Aerial attack or F-Tilt/D-Tilt and then punish from there. Sonic has a great aerial mobility, so keeping up with him in the air can be pretty difficult. Sonic’s main weakness is that he CAN’T kill. His only kill move is his F-Smash, and it’s extremely hard to hit with it. Sonic can do a lot of damage, and he can combo really well. But he can’t kill you. The key to win this matchup is to not get killed by Sonic. You can get combed here and there, but if you keep your stock, regardless if you get some damage for it, you’ll eventually win. For more details watch the video! ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Brawl Singles Bracket: Winners’s Semi Finals – Phantom ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Diddy Kong (Phantom) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 1: Castle Siege Video: Summary of the match: I like to play Phantom, he’s a really fun player and person. And I have to play my best to beat him, and I love doing my best! My general strategy against Diddy Kong is to NOT get hit by Diddy’s kill moves or set ups. Which means, bananas and F/D-Smash. Diddy Kong has a LOT of combos, and real setups to get easy kills or damage. His main weakness is his recovery, so getting him off the stage to get an easy stock was also one of my goals in the set. Diddy Kong may look like he has a weak shield, but in fact, his shield is much better, and can “eat” a lot of hits before breaking. I don’t like to spam tornado in this match up, it’s something Diddy Kong can easily punish. For more details, watch the video above! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Bracket: Winners’s Finals – Dragon ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Meta Knight (Dragon) Stages: Game 1: Battlefield Game 2: Smashville Game 3: Yoshi’s Island Video: N/A Summary of the match: I played really well this set. I spaced, reacted, and played great. I spaced my Tilts, cancelled them to Grabs/Rolls/UpBs when necessary, spaced my F-Airs and U-Airs very well, and edgeguarded Dragon really smart. And I also got some great Shuttle Loop and Air Dodge mindgames! I 2 stocked him consistently the 3 games! ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Brawl Singles Pools: Grand Finals - Phantom ------------------------------------------------------------------------ Characters: Meta Knight (vVv ZeRo) vs Diddy Kong (Phantom) Stages: Game 1: Smashville Game 2: Yoshi’s Island Game 3: Yoshi’s Island Video: *Only Game 3 was saved* Summary of the match: I won game 1 and 2 pretty easily. I 2 stocked him both games. Game 3 is the only video that was saved, for more information watch the video above! Also, read the comments for an explanation of the game. After shaking Phantom’s hand, the tournament was over. Yay, I won without dropping a single game! After the tournament, I helped Ivan clean up the whole place; re-organize consoles, TV’s, controllers, chairs, etc. Then after that, we ate a really good dinner. After that, I used the PC for a little moment to check out my Facebook, Twitter, and the vVv Gaming’s Forum, and of course, the SmashBrosLA forum as well. After that, I went to the bed immediately, I was really tired. ============================================================================== September 11th, 2011, 12 PM - "Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles is a really cool game!” ============================================================================== We woke up at 12PM. I went to the bathroom, showered, and prepared my bags and stuff for my bus travel at 3:30 PM. Ivan jumped on the PC right away to make the Tournament Results thread in SmashBrosLa. And I didn’t really want to play Brawl alone, so I decided to check out Resident Evil: The Darkside Chronicles for the Nintendo Wii. And wow, it was a great game! Great graphics, story, gameplay, and sound effects! I enjoy a LOT On-Rail Shooters (Like House of The Dead) and I like a lot the Resident Evil series, so mixing up both things made a perfect game for me to enjoy! Ivan’s dad cooked the lunch for the whole family at 1:30 PM. After eating, I had to go to the Bus station to take my bus! After saying thanks to Ivan and his family, I parted ways. Ivan’s dad recommended me to take another route to the Bus station, which required me to walk around some streets I have never went to. It was risky, because I had an hour to get to the bus station. He told me to take a Transantiago (Local bus) to the metro station, and then from the metro station a connection to the center of the city which is where the bus station is at. I told him I can’t take the Transantiago because I forgot to fill money on my VIP card. So he recommended me to take a colectivo about 5 streets from there. I did that, and waited for about 5 minutes, and no colectivo showed up. I started to get worried, so I went for the safe route and took a Taxi to the nearest metro station and then made a connection from there to the center of the city (I prefer to spend 2-4 dollars in a Taxi, than risking to lose my bus. Even If I have the money to buy another bus ticket, I have the possibility that no bus is available for that day. And that’s a risk I would not like to play with!). After 30 minutes in the metro, I arrived to the metro station with 15 minutes to spare. I bought a watter bottle, and a cheese sandwich for the trip. I forgot to charge my Nintendo DS for the trip, so I knew that my trip was going to be boring, haha. It wasn’t that bad, and I arrived about 30 minutes before the expected time (Instead of 9PM, we arrived at Chillan at 8:30 PM). My dad picked me up from the bus station (Along with brother and sister). We ate at one of my Uncle’s house, and then he gave me a ride to my house. This was a really good tournament experience. After checking out some stuff in the PC, I went to the bed. I really wanted to take a good rest! Well, that was my experience from the Hedgehog’s Lair, thanks for reading! Below you will be able to check out all the information from the Hedgehog’s Lair, such as number of entrants, tournament brackets, forum links, etc. ======================= Tournament Information ====================== Number of entrants: 24 ------------- Brackets ------------- Mid-Tier Singles: http://i863.photobuc...93/MidBrawl.gif Singles Brawl: http://i863.photobuc...lid93/Brawl.gif Tournament thread: http://www.smashbros...hedgehogs-lair/ ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Thanks for reading! Shoutouts to my family, my mom, my dad, Angelica, my friends Felipe, Jose and Mauricio! Shoutouts to vVv Gaming for their support! Make sure to follow me on Twitter to stay updated with everything that is Smash in Chile, and funny videos/pictures from time to time! Twitter: https://twitter.com/#!/vVv__ZeRo Or you can like my page in Facebook to access *almost* to the same content (plus some cool extras!), but on Facebook! Facebook Page: https://www.facebook...118311108249601 Once again, thanks for reading! Best regards, Gonzalo “vVv ZeRo” Barrios. Source: vVv ZeRo's Tournament Blog #9: The Hedgehog's Lair
  25. Over the past couple of months, twitter has been growing at a phenomenal rate for eSports, and more people are getting involved. This is exactly what the industry needs for it to grow and move on to the next level. Social media has been a big part for pop culture, developing fan basis', sharing quick news and used for meeting new people who have the same interests as you. I've heard the question come up several times before, and hell, even I ask it sometimes; how does one get more followers? I'm here to try to give the best answers possible and help some fellow gamers out. . One of the most obvious ways to get more for eSports related tweets is to be good at a certain competitive title, be good at a few games, or just play a lot of games that people have played and can share game information with. If you are a professional gamer, sometimes it's not even hard to get followers as all you would have to do is compete in tournament and do well. If they engage with the community and their fans a lot as well, only makes it better for them. Communicating with everyone in the community is always a plus for anyone as it shows that you have a personality, can get along with people, and appreciate a possible fan basis that you have. Here's another way to get followers, and this one is more like a hit or miss type of deal; vVv redvsblue touched on this in one of his blog posts recently that he had gained many followers from just following vVv Gaming's twitter account. This is good for a couple of reasons, one, it builds a relationship with vVv's news content put up on social media, and two, if you associate with vVv's tweets, you can get exposure from vVv as well as retweets of your information you like to share. You can not only follow vVv Gaming, but everyone in vVv and many other organizations that have twitter. The only reason I say this way is a hit or miss is because you wont be guaranteed followers, but it give you a chance to get exposure and publicity for your own twitter account. . This last method to getting followers that I can share; and this one is my personal favorite idea; is to be good at one thing, and one thing only. This is a fantastic thing because if you are really good, or can do good things with something, you will be able to share info from your perspective of it. If you are truly good at something alone and start tweeting about it, people will start coming to you for the info because they wont be able to find it from anyone else. This is why all actors and artists have many followers, not only because they are famous, but because people are interested in their life and what they put on twitter. That is a horrible comparison to the gaming community, I know. I was just making an idea of what you could do with twitter and your own personality. If you're good to people on twitter and know how to make friends, you are only going to look better and your image will grab peoples attention. Always make sure to connect with people and RT their cool information they share. You just might get rewarded! . I hope I have helped some people grab some followers with this information, and I want to give a shoutout to @vVv_Gaming for doing what they do best, and @vVv_redvsblue for giving his insight on how to get followers quickly! Make sure to throw me a follow on twitter @Slauney for vVv news, eSports content and possible blog ideas. Thanks for reading.

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