WW.MCZ.Ryan Hart is één van de beste fighters in de wereld. De voormalige Lion behoort nog steeds tot de top van de scene. Daar sprak hij met MCZ.Tokido en stuurde dat interview naar onze redactie.
Bij LowLandLions was hij gekend als Prodigal Son, maar tegenwoordig speelt hij gewoon onder zijn eigen naam als WW.MCZ.Ryan Hart. Hij sprak met MCZ.Tokido over onderwerpen als zijn training, het 25th anniversary toernooi in San Francisco en enkele tips voor nieuwe spelers.
Hello everyone, this is WW.MCZ.Ryan Hart and today I'll be talking to one of the premier pro players within fighting games. Madcatz’ very own Tokido. I'll be asking him a few questions on these subjects:
1. His training
2. AE conditions in japan
3. His first fighting experience
4. His real fighting experience
5. Japan top ten players
6. 25th Anniversary Tournament
7. Tips for new players
Ryan Hart: Inside the fighting game community you are one of the elite multiple fighting game players. Inside of all the fighting games you play which is currently your favourite game and why?
Tokido: “SSF4 AE is my favourite game. People all over the world can play this game as the online is very good whereas this wasn't the case with other games previously. SSF4AE is the one game where the world really comes together.”
RH: What about the game itself, what is your favourite part of the game?
T: “I think the focus attack makes this game interesting as its unique and changes the way people must think to win.”
RH: Yea I agree, focus attack is an interesting part of the system. Normally a player using a character that has a one hit over head like Fei could mix this with a low attack for a 50/50 but as focus attack beats both the opponent is forced to change how they approach their opponent.
T: “Yes it is interesting.”
RH: Do players in the Japanese community feel that AE 2012 needs a new version to re-balance the characters or are they happy with the game as it is currently?
T: “People in Japan are honestly bored with the game, rather than an update people want a new game. People are just bored with the SF4 system and releasing a new version won't change that. At best it'll be popular for a little while but eventually the same problem will come back around. If they release a new game, it will attract new players also which is another thing a new rebalance wouldn't do.”
RH: At the 25th Anniversary tournament after you defeated Infiltration in the Winners finals it looked like you were sure to win the tournament, what do you feel changed in the grand finals?
T: “I didn't really change much but Infiltration changed a lot. After the winners final match Infiltration went to his notes and really studied. I believe Laugh also played a vital role in Infiltrations win. He was giving Infiltration tips and I know this helped him. Personally I do think Laugh is a strong player but he doesn't quite fit into the top line of players in my opinion. However Laughs knowledge is amazing so it kind of feels like you are playing 2 people at once when you play against them. After all they are kind of a 2 in 1 combination. In this kind of EVO type setting where you play side by side and people can sit with you, what the Koreans do is the best way. I too maybe should have had Fuudo or someone to be in my corner as well. The Koreans are currently ahead of the rest of the world with this strategy but we will also practice this strategy too.”
RH: Which was the first fighting game you ever played and how was that experience for the first time?
T: “I played Street Fighter 2 on the Super Nintendo and it was really fun. I couldn't beat CPU Sagat, he was so strong.” (haha)
RH: How many hours do you play games per week?
T: “I play over 10 hours per day and total around 80 hours per week. I have a schedule for what day I will play what game and so on.”
RH: Wow 80 hours! That’s nuts, that's like two full time jobs. If Capcom were to release a new version of SSF4 AE, what changes would you like to see?
T: “Well, I play a strong character so I don’t really want them to make the stronger characters weaker. I would like to see Capcom make the weaker characters stronger.”
RH: What is your advice for any players wanting to become top players?
T: “They should ask many top players for advice and listen to what they say.”
RH: I think that's good for when players are really new at games and stuff. But I think that once they reach an intermediate level they need to learn to think for themselves and not rely on others in that way.
T: “Yes, I totally agree.”
RH: Who are the top ten best players in Japan right now in your opinion?
T: “Well, when I look at the names in the current Topanaga it seems they are in the top ten. In no particular order I think:
RH: I have heard Cross Counter Asia's Zhi mention many times that he feels a 3 out of 5 set for serious tournaments would be better than 2 out of 3. What do you think? Should all major events become 3 out of 5? Or is 2 out of 3 enough for AE?
T: “If its possible first to 3 would be great, this would definitely make the players happier. I think time would be the biggest problem though. Matches shouldn’t be too long, like first to ten or anything because that wouldn't be interesting to watch. But as long as there is time first to 3 would be perfect for tournament format.”
RH: You are amazing at fighting games but have you ever had a real fight and how did that come about and how did that go?
T: “I had lots of fights in primary school. Usually started from stupid reasons like he said something like "Baka" ('Idiot' in Japanese). This was around the time I was about 7 or something.”
RH: So since you became an adult, you've never had a fight?
RH: Do you do any other activities or socialising outside of gaming?
T: “I go to the gym 4 times week and I really enjoy that. Most of the friends I meet are friends I have through gaming so most of my socializing is done at tournaments and sessions. Although I do have old friends from school but I don't really meet them that often.”
RH: Do you have a regular job? And if not how do you earn money?
T: “Not at the moment, I have a manager’s contract with Topanga and this is how I pay my way.”
RH: What does your family think about your gaming career?
T: “They are really understanding but the subject never really comes up, they just kind of leave me to it. There was this time I went EVO in 2002 where I told them all about it and kind of introduced them to the gaming world and they were really understanding. There hasn't really been much since talk about it since then. We don't live together so that changes things too although they do tell me to come home to visit from time to time.”
RH: Where do you think pro gaming for fighting games will be in 10 years?
T: “I think the Evolution event plays a critical role in the life of pro fighting games. I still think there will be EVO in ten years but if EVO was to disappear I can't imagine there would ever be a tournament quite like it again and this would heavily affect the pro fighting game world. If more good games are released this will create a positive energy within the fighting community so game developers also play a big part but timing is really important with all this as well. If a game comes out that's really good and players are happy with it, it encourages other developers to want to make good games too. Games that have a good system and really bring the people together is what would really help in the future.”
RH: People can choose any hobby to do in their youth. But millions of people decide to play games, and each of them have different reasons for doing so. What is your reason for playing fighting games?
T: “Well I tried a few things before like rock climbing, Shogi and some other stuff. Games are cool because you play for 10 ten hours or simply 5 minutes. And when I was younger I didn't always have a lot of time. So the fact I could play whenever I wanted to for as short or as long as I wanted to was great. I liked that there would always be an opponent to play as well. Also individual matches are fast so you are rewarded quickly. Then you have the chance to play again straight away and this is fun. Teaming with friends for team tournaments was also fun too. Now though, I play because it's my job.”
RH: Tokido, thank you very much for your time and good luck in all your future tournaments.
T: “Thank you very much.”