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Cody's win quotes

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"Fighting like this brings back lots of memories."

"I don't need a reason. I just like to fight."

"The only thing that doesn't change is the excitement of the fight."

"This is gettin' boring. Maybe I oughtta head home."

"I prefer my fights quick an' easy."

"I've got time. You up for a rematch?"

"A fighter that goes down that easy ain't worth a thing. Beat it!"

"You sure you wanna be goin' around starting' fights with guys like me?"

"If I'da know it'd be this boring on the outside, I'da stayed in prison."

"Let's get this over with."

"*sigh*"

Super Street Fighter IV Trials - Viper

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Doing the trials in SSFIV requires a lot of fundamental knowledge. Click here for a refresher course.

1-6:

Specials, her Super, and her Ultras

7: sc.LP, sc.MP

1-frame link

8: s.LK, cr.MP

Doesn't matter if you use the sc.LK or a s.LK for this one.

9: sc.MP, cr.MP

1-frame link.

10: Seismic Hammer Cancel

Push any two punch buttons together during the startup of a Seismic Hammer.

11: j.MK, cr.MK, MP Thunder Knuckle

Special Cancel the cr.MK with the M Thunder Knuckle.

12: H Thunder Knuckle, Emergency Combination

Catch Dan with the H TK at any point near the peak of his jump, then hit him with the Super before he hits the ground. No cancelling required.

13 – EX Seismic Hammer, High Jump, Burning Dance

The trick to this is making sure you High Jump toward Dan as he flies up from the EX Seismo, and then input the Ultra as soon as Viper leaves the ground.

14: sc.HP, High Jump, Burning Dance

To make this combo work, you have to buffer in the inputs for a High Jump and the Ultra simultaneously. It can be a weird idea to wrap your head around, so I had to break it down to get it. First, I realized that by moving the stick from down, to back, to up/back, I could activate a High Jump while simultaneously entering the first motion of the Ultra. From there, all I had to do was add the second QCB+KKK to finish the Ultra. Practice this part by itself until it's easy, and then add the sc.HP at the beginning to bring it all together.

15: cr.LP, s.LK, cr.MP xx LP Thunder Knuckle, Emergency Combination

buffer the Emergency Combination (Super) in during the L Thunder Knuckle's animation. Simple.

16: EX Thunder Knuckle, LP seismic hammer, high jump, Burning Dance

Connect with the EX TK from a full screen away so that the LP Seismic Hammer that follows can connect. High Jump Cancel the LP SH jumping toward Dan, then quickly enter in the QCBx2+KKK to catch him with the Ultra before he hits the ground

17: L Seismic hammer, High Jump, H Burning Kick, Emergency Combo

Some bread 'n butter Viper stuff here. Make sure that you High Jump toward Dan after the L seismic hammer, input the H Burning Kick as soon as Viper leaves the ground, and then juggle Dan with the Super before he hits the ground.

18: j.HK, sc.HP xx H Thunder Knuckle, EX Focus Cancel, Burst Time

(corner) – Everything is pretty straightforward here, with one exception. You have to wait a split second after the EXFC to activate the Ultra. If you do it too soon, Dan will be too high and the Ultra will miss.

19 – Focus Attack, EX Thunder Knuckle, Burning Dance

This one can be a bit confusing. Dash forward after the Focus Attack so that the following EX TK can connect. When it does, jump back and input the Ultra. It seems like it needs to be buffered in so that Viper isn't high off the ground when the Ultra starts, but that's not necessary; it'll connect as Dan is crumbling from the EX TK.

20: j.HP, sc.MP, cr.MP xx M Thunder Knuckle, Emergency Combination

The only thing to know about this combo is that it ends with a Super Cancel, so you have to buffer the Emergency Combo in during the M TK. The rest is really straightforward.

21: Focus Attack, cr.HP xx Thunder Knuckle Cancel, Burst Time

Three out of four moves in this combo are multi-button inputs. It involves two back-to-back cancels, and it ends with what amounts to a 1-frame-link Ultra. This one is HARD. It was absolutely crucial for me to break it down. Start by getting very, very familiar with the timing on the TK Cancel. Start with a cr.HP, cancel into a TK of any strength (I just used the HP version), then hit any other two punch buttons to cancel it. The timing for the TK cancel is deceptive in that you have longer than you might think. If it keeps failing (that is, the TK keeps coming out), wait longer to push the two punch buttons for the cancel. Once you've gotten good at that, you have to finish it off by connecting with the Ultra. The thing is, the Ultra has to come out very fast after the TK cancel. So fast, in fact, Dan should still be doubled over from the initial cr.HP. It all starts coming together eventually, but you might notice that Dan winds up blocking the Ultra every time. This means you have to input the Ultra sooner. So again, the timing for the TK cancel is long, but the timing to jump into the Ultra afterward is insanely, brutally short. It can be mashed out, but that's not necessarily easier. Stay with it. Good luck.

22: j.HK, s.LK, s.LP, Burst Time

This one's pretty tough (and the very last SSFIV Trial I completed), but it's not too bad once you understand how to buffer it. The trick is to buffer in a QCF when you do the s.LP so that you can simply roll QCF, UF (this is the high jump – notice it goes from down to up)+PPP. You're essentially layering the input for the High Jump cancel over the input for the Ultra. If it's still confusing you, try this: standing close to Dan, hit a QCF+LP, making sure that a sc.LP comes out instead of a cr.LP or something like that. When you've got the hang of that, add a QCF, UF+PPP to it to activate the Ultra. When you get it right, Dan will have just started reeling back from the sc.LP when the Ultra animation starts. Once you get this part down, the rest is a cinch.

23: Focus Attack, cr.HP xx EX seismo, high jump, H Burning Kick, H TK

This combo is somewhat hard, but it's only a taste of what's to come. Dan has to be cornered or the last hit of this combo won't connect. The main parts to concentrate on are the High Jump Cancel and the H Burning Kick. For the High Jump Cancel, just be sure to A) allow enough time for the EX Seismo to hit before you try to cancel it, and B) jump either straight up or in toward Dan. The H Burning Kick has to come out very soon after the High Jump Cancel, otherwise it misses. Viper's pretty much ready to finish with the H TK the moment she hits the ground after the H Burning Kick, so input it as soon as she lands to catch Dan with it before he lands.

24: cr.HP xx Thunder Knuckle Cancel, cr.HP xx EX Seismic Hammer, High Jump, H Burning Kick, Burst Time

Let's see here... it's a cancel, a cancel of that cancel, a one-frame link that gets cancelled by an EX move... which gets cancelled by a High Jump, and gets finished by a special move, followed by an Ultra. Oh man. Alright, as always, I had to break it down. The first thing to get good at is the cr.HP, TK Cancel, cr.HP part. I just did this part over and over until it came naturally. From there, I worked on adding the EX Seismo. This can be made easier by holding D/F for the second cr.HP, and then moving the stick to down, then to d/f again to execute the EX Seismo cancel, but I didn't do that. Anyway, once again, I just kept doing those first four moves until they were coming out fairly easily. When I got to that point, I added in the last three moves. I kept messing up by not inputting the H Burning Kick as soon as Viper left the ground, but I eventually nailed it. That much is the hard part. After that, it's a simple matter of adding in the Ultra.

Super Street Fighter IV Trials - Ibuki

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Doing the trials in SSFIV requires a lot of fundamental knowledge. Click here for a refresher course.

1-6: These are all just special moves, her super, and her Ultras. Make sure they hit, or they don't count.

7: Basically a target combo. Push HP far enough away so that Ibuki does the spinning elbow, then as soon as it hits, push F+HP again. Way easy.

8: Link two medium punches. Mashing won't work, so pay attention to the recovery frames and hit the button at the right moment. Remember, if the second MP isn't coming out at all, you're going too fast. If it's getting blocked, you're going too slow. Plinking helps.

9: Tricky. Ibuki has two jabs - one for up close, another for farther away. This link will only work with the "from far" jab.

10: Air Target Combo. Jump toward Dan, hit HP, then hit F+MK. The jump-in HP has a weird hitbox, so you have to hit very high with it. As soon as that hits, push F+MK. Remember that you had to push forward to jump in at Dan to begin with, so you can just hold it for the duration of the combo. That's what I did.

11: Doesn't get much easier than this. Get as close as you can and tap LK, MK, HK in that order. If one of the moves isn't coming out, adjust your timing between button presses.

12: Like trial 9, you have to start with the far jab, then just hit the medium punch button, followed by F+LK. It's a target combo, so there's no need to put a ton of effort into the timing. Just push the buttons and keep it moving.

13: Get in close, hit hard punch, then just mash D+HK. Target combos are so much easier than links...

14: Starts with a target combo very similar to the one in trial 10, only now it's jump-in LP, F+HP. Follow this with standing LP, standing MP, then just mash D+HK like the trial before this one. Remember that these are two separate target combos linked together, though. I kept messing up because I wasn't pausing after the first one. Once I remedied that, it was a breeze.

15: Agemen into Neck Breaker - stand close to Dan and hit back+MP. Buffer the input for the Neck Breaker during the startup frames. Remember that you are already holding back from the first move of the combo, so all you have to do from there is QCF+P and you're done.

16: HP into Raida - easier to do by hitting F+HP together, then cancelling into Raida (half-circle back+P).

17: Focus Attack into Ultra - go with a Level 3 Focus Attack, dash forward, and buffer the QCBx2 in during the dash.

18: Kunai into Super - Jump and then try to throw two kunais in rapid succession. It's a super cancel. If you're only getting one kunai out, but no super, go faster.

19: Hien into Super - Buffer the motion for the Super in during the two kicks. Ibuki has to be in the air close to Dan when you push P (I used HP, but I'm sure any punch will do) to activate the Super or it won't hit. Mashing works.

20: Jump-in HP, MK into Tsumuji - standard jump-in combo, with a special cancel. Remember the jump-in HP has to hit high, and you cancel the recovery frames on the MK with QCB+K.

21: Target Combo 1, Target Combo 4, special cancel, special move. Kind of a doozy, this combo only works with Dan's back in the corner. Hit the first target combo, slight pause, start the LP, MP, HP follow-up. Cancel the HP of Target Combo 4 with the EX special by immediately following the HP with QCB+KK. The fourth and final strike of the EX move sends Dan flying. Grab him out of the air with QCB+P.

22: Cr.LK, cr.LP, s.LP, cr.MP into Neck Breaker. The timing for the link between the first two hits is deceptively long. It took me a few tries to get used to it, so take your time just working on that one link before moving on. Fortunately, the gap between the cr.LP and the st.LP that follows is similar, so that's simple enough. The tricky part is, the following cr.MP has to come out much faster. You can plink this easily enough, and then cancel it directly into the HP Neck Breaker.

23: Air Target Combo, sc.MK xx Kazegiri, EXFC, Raida. This one had my number for a little while. To land the target combo, do a jump-in LK, then push F+MK when that hits. You have to let go of the stick for the following MK, though, or else Ibuki's F+MK overhead comes out instead of the s.MK, and that's no good. That part was easy enough to fix, but I kept messing up by inputting the EXFC before I cancelled the s.MK into the Kazegiri. Once I slowed myself down and started cancelling the Kazegiri instead of the s.MK, I was all set. Dashing forward on the EXFC scoots Ibuki under the airborne opponent if he's not cornered, though, so you actually have to the Raida finish from the other side. Pretty tricky, but cool looking. I definitely recommend practicing the s.MK xx Kazegiri, EXFC, Raida part separately for a while before getting into the whole combo.

24: This was the hardest of Ibuki's Trials, in my opinion. It starts with that awkward cr.LK, cr.LP link. From there, you go into the s.LK, s.MK target combo. Here's where it gets fun: during the target combo, you have to buffer in the super jump (which will cancel the animation on the s.MK) and the Ultra at the same time. It goes like this: cr.LK... *pause*... cr.LP, s.LK, s.MK target combo... Now, during those two kicks, do a QCF motion, allowing the stick to go into the up-forward position (this is the Super Jump input because you just went from down to up very quickly), QCF (this finishes the directional input for the Ultra), and then hit all three kicks. Again, it's QCF into up-forward, QCF+KKK. Another way to look at it is adding a quick "up" in between the QCFs of the Ultra. Don't let it get you down if this takes a while to execute. It's tough.

Super Street Fighter IV - Cancelling, Buffering, and Plinking

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Okay, one more kinda techy blog on fundamentals and then we'll dive right into the trials tutorial for Ibuki. Here we go.

Cancelling

All moves consist of startup frames, active frames, and recovery frames. Cancelling allows a player to skip the recovery frames of given move and go right into a new move. Ryu's crouching medium kick into hadoken is a common example, and most of the difficult trials in SSFIV require moves to be cancelled.

Most people have seen this, do this, and could easily point it out in a match every time they saw it. But for the sake of clarity, I'll spell it out: when we talk about "cancelling" moves, we're talking about cancelling the recovery frames (things like Makoto's Hayate Cancel are a different thing).

Let's look at another example with Ryu: standing hard punch into Shoryuken. The recovery frames on the standing hard punch were cancelled by a special move. This is a special cancel.

Another example: Ryu's Shoryuken into Super (Shinku Hadoken). This is a Super cancel. It'll be important to know this when I say "cancel the Shoryuken into Super" in future blogs.

Buffering

Hiding the input of a move inside the frames of another move. With Zangief, a lot of players like to do a jump-in Ultra because it allows them to do the double-360 in the air. What they're doing is hiding the double-circle motion inside the jump animation frames. You'll also see this with Zangief's standing hard kick into Spinning Piledriver. Again, the double-circle motion there gets tucked away inside the motion of the kick, allowing the player to push "up" twice without actually jumping.

Buffering also plays a role in cancelling. Going back to the example of Ryu's standing hard punch into Shoryuken: to cancel the move, you're buffering the forward, down, down-forward motion during the startup frames of the standing hard punch. Most of the buffering you already do is like this - common and probably second-nature... which means you may not have really paid much attention to it. You'll need to understand this technique for some of the trials, including Ibuki's.

Plinking

I read about this technique on the Shoryuken.com SFIV forums, and it's rad because it allows you to input a single normal move on two frames back-to-back.

So, let's say a normal move needs to come out frame 6. Ordinarily you'd have to hit the button on precisely that frame. With plinking, you can be a frame ahead (telling the game the button was pushed on frames 5 and 6), or a frame behind (making it think the button was hit on 6 and 7). What's great is that the engine always goes gives you the benefit of the doubt, so if you plink the move anywhere within that 3-frame window, it goes in your favor. Sweet.

Blah, that's too techy. Here's a more practical example: go into training mode and turn the input data on. Press medium punch. The input data shows a little yellow hand.

Now push medium punch and light punch at the same time. The input data shows a blue hand and a yellow hand side-by-side.

Now plink it. Push medium punch and then immediately afterward push light punch. Do this by simply allowing your index finger to fall on the light punch button after your middle finger hits the medium punch button, like you're just rolling your fingers. If you did it right, you'll see a blue hand and a yellow hand directly below another yellow hand, like this:

MP
LP, MP

The game thinks you just pushed medium punch twice within two sixtieths of a second even though you really pushed two different buttons one time each. Better still, only one move (the medium punch) was actually shown onscreen, and you just have yourself 3 frames in which to land a 1-frame-link. You sneaky devil.

This technique might be a little difficult to understand without a visual aid, so I definitely encourage you to go into training mode and see it for yourself. Try doing Balrog's jab, jab, jab, jab into sweep the old fashioned way, and then try it with plinking. It's pretty crazy. A little weird to get used to at first, but it's helped my execution (in both trials and in bouts) substantially.

As always, guys, if this stuff is making your head spin, don't be afraid to ask for clarification. Up next, we get into the good stuff. Let's get Ibuki's trials knocked out, yeah?

Click here to go back to the beginning of the fundamentals blogs.

Super Street Fighter IV - More on Frames

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Before I get into the details on frames, I want to make an important point. This blog and the last one probably come off as very dry, and quite possibly make it seem like high-level fighting gaming is about as fun as counting blades of grass passing underfoot as you walk. It may seem like fighting gamers, if only myself in particular, take a very stoic, calculated, or even mathematical approach to fighting games.

Quite the contrary. In spite of going out of my way to learn these things and apply them, I am still a dyed-in-the-wool organic player through and through. I may know that Gen's Gekiro (waterfall kick) had 7 frames of startup in SFIV, but what I actually use is the simple knowledge that it pretty much sucks as a reversal. Make sense? The point is, fighting games in general, and even the trials in SSFIV, are as much about "feel" as they are about knowledge, if not more. So don't be afraid that fighting games start to suck like math homework the more you get into them, heh. Anyway, on with it.

We've already discussed that Super Street Fighter IV runs at 60 FPS. Now let's see what we can do with that information.

Every move in SSFIV shares three frame-related traits in common: that they have startup frames, active frames, and recovery frames.

Startup Frames

The animation that takes place before a move actually connects. These frames flash by the screen in a matter of sixtieths of seconds, but they can certainly be seen. In ordinary play, it's not necessary to literally crunch numbers like a supercomputer calculating startup frames - we tend to understand they're there instinctively. But when it comes to the trials, knowledge of how the fighting engine registers moves is helpful.

Active frames

The frames of animation in which a character's move connects or could connect. Some moves have more active frames than others. Cammy's jab, for example, has a relative few. Her Cannon Spike, on the other hand, has many (check it out in training mode - have the AI do hard Cannon Spikes, then jump in and try to hit Cammy out of the attack.)

Recovery frames

These frames occur after the last active frame of a move, and, like startup frames, can be seen onscreen. These are by far, in my opinion, the most crucial frames to pay attention to when doing the trials. Reason being, links require that a move be done on the first available frame possible. In order for that to happen, the move being linked must start at the exact right moment so that the active frame "deadline," if you will, is met.

It sounds more complicated than it is. Let's look at an example to help clarify: Ryu can link two crouching medium punches together. Making it work goes something like this:

Player hits the medium punch button. The startup frames pass... active frames start (the punch connects)... the active frames end... recovery frames begin (Ryu begins pulling his arm back in)... the active frames end (another move can be started). The input for the second medium punch must be registered by the game on the last recovery frame or else the link fails. A frame too early, the second medium punch won't come out at all. A frame too late, the second medium punch is blocked. If you only get one thing out of this entire entry, let it be this.

I see recovery frames as the most important frames to pay attention to because they are a visual cue to when a button needs to be pushed. As long as the button is pushed at the right moment, knowing the startup and active frames is basically irrelevant. They will come, then go, but they won't tell you when to push the next button like recovery frames do.

There is plenty more information to be given on the topic of frame data, but I've covered the bits that matter most when it comes to trials. This will probably be the last generalized, fundamentals blog in this series. Up next, I'll cover move cancelling, and we'll really get down to some SSFIV specifics.

Go into the trials and actually try some of these links, noting how they are not at all the same as strings (they can't be "mashed out.") Cerebral knowledge only gets you so far. You gotta get it in your bones to really make it useful. Again, I'm closing in on only a portion of the knowledge that's available about frames - the parts that matter most about doing the trials (read: combos that are often just hard for the sake of being hard).

Okay cool, that wraps up. Any questions, don't hesitate to ask. One more blog on fundamentals up next, then we'll jump into the good stuff.

Super Street Fighter IV Fundamentals - Frames and Combos

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Alright, so I'm probably going to start an ongoing blog series covering my experience with the Trials in Super Street Fighter IV. Before I jump into that, though, I need to provide a little foundational knowledge, and frame data is the perfect place to start. If all of this is too basic, though, by all means, skip down to the bottom for a link to the character tutorial you're looking for.

Bear in mind that these fundamentals, by and large, apply to many different video games, especially fighters. However, as I continue this blog, I'll start honing in more and more on SSFIV specifically.

As an aside, I just want to point out that I'm not trying to come off as some sort of fighting game know-it-all or even an amazing player. I'm pretty solid and I can do the trials... that's about it. I only wanted to do this blog series because some of the trials have outrageously obscure tricks you have to know to make them work. Others seem quite a bit harder than they already are. I've taken so much from the community in terms of SF knowledge that I just really want to give a bit back. That's it.

Feel free to copy this information anywhere you want to, and by all means, share it. Accreditation appreciated.

Frames

Any screenshot you've seen of any in-game footage is showing you a single frame of that game's animation. Any time you pause a game in the middle of the action, you're looking at a solitairy frame.

Think of a flip book. Each page in it is analagous to a "frame" of animation in a video game. When you flip through a flip book, you see a series of still images, one after another, at a fast rate, creating the illusion of animation.

That is analogous to how video games are animated, where each hypothetical flip book page equates to a frame. However, in the case of video games, you are seeing a much larger amount of those still images, and they are zipping by much more quickly than in a flip book - 60 frames every second.

So, why does this matter? For one, just like anything else you might want to devote some time and energy into, it's good to have a strong understanding of the fundamentals. But in the case of SSFIV specifically, many of the game's combos (especially the Trial combos) use 1-frame links.

Combos, Strings, Target Combos, and Links

Combos are sets of moves that can not be blocked or interrupted as long as two conditions are met: 1) the first move of the combo hits successfully, and 2) the person doing the combo executes the rest of the moves in the combo properly. Combos can consist of any combination of normal moves, special moves, Super moves, or Ultras. A common example from SSFIV would be Ryu's jump-in roundhouse, crouching fierce punch, hadoken. From the moment the jump-in RH lands, the rest of the combo is guaranteed to connect as long as whoever is doing it gets it right; the person getting hit has no way to stop it.

Strings, sometimes called chains, are simple, usually low-damage combinations of a single normal move that can be done by rapidly pressing the required buttons. A very common string would be three crouching jabs. These combos are relatively easy to do, and don't require much in the way of precise timing. As long as each successive move is performed within a certain amount of time - within a given number of frames - the string will connect as a successfull combo.

Target Combos are just like strings, except they involve more than one normal move. Ken's standing medium punch into hard punch is a target combo.

Links are similar to strings in that they consist only of normal moves, but differ in that they require more precise timing to execute. An example from SSFIV would be Ibuki's standing light punch into standing medium kick. If you try to do this combo by simply pressing light punch and quickly pressing (or mashing) medium kick, the combo will fail. To make it work, you have to press medium kick at the precise moment - a certain number of frames - after the light punch hits. One frame too soon, and the medium kick won't come out. One frame too late, and the medium kick gets blocked. This is what we refer to as a 1-frame link

Most of the difficult Trials in SSFIV combinations of strings and 1-frame links. What's more, the timing for links is not always the same. Standing light punch into standing medium kick with Ibuki, for example, requires a completely different timing from Adon's crouching light punch into crouching medium punch, and the only practical way of learning these differences is through trial-and-error.

In Summary

Remember that most of this information applies to every fighting game, but there are some differences. Certain games, like BlazBlue, for example, have a mechanic that allows combos to be interrupted. The series I'm writing is intended to explain SSFIV, though, so if you find information that appears to conflict with this, remember it might be a game-specific difference. That said, if I've just flat got something wrong, here, let me know and I'll make the adjustments.

Frame: One of several still images within animation, analagous to a page in a flip book; what you see when you pause the game mid-fight at any given moment. SSFIV animation runs at 60 frames-per-second.

Combos: Moves done in succession that are guaranteed to connect and cannot be interrupted as long as the first move hits and the person doing the combo does all the moves correctly.

Strings: Also referred to as chains, these are simple, usually one-button combos with very lax frame requirements that consist of only normal moves (e.g. three crouching light punches).

Links: Combinations of normal moves that require frame-specific timing to execute (e.g. crouching medium kick into crouching light kick with Balrog).

Target Combos: Like strings, but involve more than one normal move. (e.g. crouching light kick, crouching medium kick, standing medium punch into fierce punch with Dudley).

...more on frames.

Character Trials:
Ibuki

Who wants to play?

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I should have had personal gameplay vids up for Street Fighter IV by now, but for some reason I just haven't gotten around to it. It's a damn shame too, because I've had quite a few matches that were nothing less than epic. In one, I got pummeled in the first round by a solid Balrog player until I was down to almost zero life. I found an opening right at the end, capitalized on it, then wound up taking that round and winning the match. In another, I went to the third round with a Guile player, and in each round we were both down to almost no life, yet again. I used a Focus Attack at the end, linked into my Ultra, and barely squashed him out with a mere 5 seconds on the clock. Makes me a little sick that I don't have these matches on video. And I can't even tell you how many epic moments DarkCatalyst and I have had in this game.

Well, I can't get those moments back, but there's no reason why I have to miss even more. After I get my joystick either repaired or replaced, I'm going to be spending a lot of time recording matches to put up here and on YouTube - both SFIV and HD Remix. If any of you want to have some matches against me, let me know. Respond with your GamerTags (sorry, no PS3 for me yet) and we'll get it sorted out. Tell your friends too.

Oh and... go practice ;)

I now know EVERYTHING about Street Fighter IV!

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Ask me anything about Street Fighter IV - anything at all. Go ahead, it's cool. I have the game guide, see, so I have all the answers.

What's that? Cammy's height? Oh easy, she's 5'5". E. Honda's weight? 302 lbs. Gen's hobbies/skills? Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Yep, I've got all the answers. A regular Street Fighter encyclopedia here, in the flesh. Thanks, Prima...

Just don't ask me the best way to work Abel's Change of Direction into a match, because all I have are pictures of his normal moves. No captions with good bits of wisdom, just pictures. Same goes for all the other characters.

Oh, speaking of, don't ask me how to unlock all the characters, because the methods in this book won't work for Akuma or Gouken (and so, by extension, Seth). This book doesn't actually have all the caveats that go along with adding those guys to the roster. You'll need to check GameFAQS or some other site for that.

While you're at it, find a different source of information if you need frame data for all the non-arcade characters. You know, that other half of the cast.

Okay, so maybe there are a few menial little details this book glossed over. But hey, at least I know C. Viper's measurements are 39/24/35. Sup giiiirrl?

All joking aside, Prima's $20 "guide" to Street Fighter IV is like a giant version of the pamphlet that comes with any game, only it has even more useless information than you're used to. Call it a bonus. The fact that it's a, shall we say, not entirely robust guide isn't really the problem for me - not by itself, anyway. No, what really irks me about it is that the damn thing was sealed when I bought it.

Now I have to ask myself, was it sealed to protect Prima from those people who poach the info without buying the book? Or was it to protect Prima's dirty little secret that this thing is a horrible product? I've seen the inside of this book, and there is next to nothing in it that's worth reading, let alone "stealing." Call me a cynic, but I'm beginning to favor the latter.

Don't buy this guide. In fact, be like me and don't buy ANY guides that you can't peruse beforehand. The gaming industry is finding more and more ways to undercut its consumer base. I'll be damned if I'll let half-assed game guides be another bullet for me to dodge. I already have a hard enough time saying no to "Limited Edition" everythings and other such marketry as it is.

That's right, marketry.

What do you say?

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I mean seriously, what do you say after you drop off the face of the earth for months, then come back and try to resurrect your old blog?

Who knows? I'm sure I'll think of something, though. God knows I've had plenty on my mind. Work, the kids, gamesandstuff...

Anyway, I'm ALREADY too busy to stick around, even for this one measly little entry, but at least I can finally and officially say I'm back. And so I will.

I'm back.

Miss you dudes...

by on

Been busy, busy, busy, busy, busy... ugh. There's all this cool gaming stuff going on, and I barely even know what's up. And I have pretty much NO idea what's going on with all of you, my buddies, here on site. Sucks.

I'll catch up, I think. Newly crashed computer doesn't help though.