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Tuesday
Jun162009

SDTEKKEN.COM: WIN A COPY OF BLAZBLUE!

SDTEKKEN is running a contest until the end of this week where you can win a free copy of BlazBlue! The contest requires a bit of creative input, so be prepared to do a little work for your chance to win free copy of the game, you lazy bums! That's right, you'll have to pull yourself away from grinding for GP and submit an image or video of yourself holding a sign of some sort that says "THE WHEEL OF FATE IS TURNING". Check out the contest rules below.

via SDTEKKEN.com :

The wheel of fate is turning!!! REAL TALK! Do you want to win a copy of BlazBlue and receive it before anyone else? Yes? Well, enter our “Wheel of Fate” contest by submitting either a picture or video of you with a sign that says “THE WHEEL OF FATE IS TURNING!” The most creative entries will win a copy of BlazBlue for the console of your choice (Xbox 360 or PS3)! Click below for full contest rules!

SDTEKKEN x AKSYS GAMES “Wheel of Fate Contest”

Step 1 = Compile a video or image with you/a friend holding a sign that says, “THE WHEEL OF FATE IS TURNING!” Be creative!

Step 2 = Send that image/link to CONTEST@SDTEKKEN.COM !

Step 3 = PROFIT! (Or we just send you the game early…)

Saturday
Jun132009

So Fashionable! So Fabulous! So Lb!

[ This is a follow up post to the UCD Team Tournament post. ]

"LB made being gay fashionable." - Jeff Tanaka.

I could tell. Not only had a string of pseudo-homoerotic jokes come during his stay at Davis, they stayed after he left. In a sense, LB has made his mark. Oh, god. Not again. No homo. A week before today was the Davis team tourney--the first Davis team tourney. The hometown peeps were still unsure of what to expect and with the SBO qualifiers on the same day, it wouldn't be logical to expect a big turnout. Logic: that word sure went to hell and back.

So, where's Davis?

To everyone who doesn't know Davis, don't feel bad. It's a small, agriculturally-based town between Saramento and San Francisco (it's just 30 minutes away from Sacramento). The life of the town revolves around the college campus, or UC Davis. There's not much else to say. The food's great, since it comes directly from the area around us. The nights are boring unless you are 21 and over (the bars always seem lively). It's a college town, but whenever I ask residents what they do for fun, they usually say, "Go to Sacramento." Funny thing: when I ask Sacramento people what they do, they say, "Go to San Francisco." I've yet to ask what San Francisco people do.

Click to read!

6/1/09, the Monday before the tourney:

It was early in the morning and for some reason or another, I messaged LB about Japanese styled clothing. At this point, I still thought he was Japanese. I mean, Hyung Lee. That's clearly Japanese, right? Anyway, I keep talking to Daigo, I mean, LB, and the conversation starts tangenting from clothing to calling him Dadigo: "Okay want to make a bet?" I tell him. "I will call you Dadigo several times at the next tourney, so people can hear it. We're both going to get weird looks." LB responds, "You will get weird looks. I will get a look of awe." And then an idea popped up: "But I sure as hell won't call you Dadigo unless you beat me in a money match."

And so the idea was born. We continued discussing the idea and it evolved into this, my initial post on the SRK PacNorth Forums:

I'm calling you out on a money match for skipping out on the interview at Fuddruckers. Here are the terms, you fake:
1) 100$ on the line.
2) We play at the Davis tourney this Saturday in SF4.
3) If I win, you got to answer as many stupid questions as I have for you in an interview AND you cry on camera, got that?
4) First to 5 matches. Round will consist of best of 3.
5) Loser has to call the winner "Daddy" or "Dadigo", if I lose.
6) If I lose, I got to drink two bottles of Soju during the tournament (first one has to go down immediately.

 [ Read the full SRK PacNorth thread here. ]

Staged drama. But it wasn't enough. It had to be more serious, so LB suggested I post out "logical" reasons for my hatred, and so I did. More and more people began to ask us if this was real. LB kept his part of the deal and affirmed it. I, on the other hand, had to let a few people know for added hype.

Click to read more ...

Thursday
Jun112009

THE GRIND: SOCAL EDITION (SF4 TRAINING & SBO QUALS)

"Hey, you're Haunts right? Welcome to SoCal... Man, I've never been so nervous for a tournament as I am today.." says Mike Ross as I am checking out all the equipment for the SBO Quals live stream.

"Yeah, it should be pretty crazy..." I say casually, not knowing that this will be one of the most intense tournaments of my Street Fighter career.

THE GRIND

Rewind three weeks, I approach MAGUS1234 , NorCal's best C. Viper player, asking him to go to SoCal with me for a week and three days to level up in Street Fighter, possibly check out E3 and gather content for iPlayWinner. Just a few days prior to that we discussed competing in SBO Quals to try to win a free ticket to Japan anyway, so after thinking it over for a week or so, he finally contacts me and says "Yeah man, lets do this, it will be a grind but sometimes you just have to do it."

What is The Grind you ask? Well, like in any RPG game there is always the need to grind it out, have a ton of battles in high level areas to gain EXP points and level up. Whether people realise it or not, this is required in Street Fighter as well if you expect to be a decent player. Except unlike video games, when and where you level up, and the reasoning behind it isn't as simple as rising two digit numbers. Really, you are the main character and all these battles take place at actual locations like Keystone, Denjin Arcade, Arcade Infinity, EVO and all the other random dungeons you may encounter along the way.

This was more or less our thought process for going to SoCal: MAGUS1234 and I felt we needed to seek out other styles to take our game to the next level.

Click to read more ...

Monday
Jun082009

UCD's First Team Tourney

First off, thank you to iPlayWinner's cameraman, thxyoutoo, for recording and providing video coverage of the tourney. The turnout was the biggest Davis has ever had with 18 teams (54 people) and a pot of $214.20 going to first place!

Results are:

1 Jewish Coopa Force (Andrew [Bison], Tanaka [Ryu], and Coopa [Zangief])
2 NME (Mark [Sagat], FilipinoChamp [Dhalsim], and James/Taunt [Rufus])
3 Choi-C-V (Eric Choi [Rufus], Crizzle [Zangief], and Kyle [Ken])

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
Jun022009

E3 NEWS: 'TATSUNOKO VS CAPCOM: ULTIMATE ALL-STARS' IS COMING TO NORTH AMERICA THIS WINTER!

Capcom announced today that Tatsunoko vs Capcom is coming to North America for the Nintendo Wii. This is official news which I received from Haunts today while he is in LA preparing for the SBO Qualifiers. For those of you who don't know, SBO (Super Battle Opera) is one of the largest annual tournaments which takes place in Tokyo. On a side note, let's hope Haunts does well and makes it to the top!

Capcom's popular and critically acclaimed 'VS' fighting series is getting an all new next generation introduction. TvC pits Capcom's characters against Tatsunoko Productions anime superheroes. This clash of heroes face off in two-on-two battles for the ultimate 2D tag-team battle.

There are plenty of new surprises for the North America release, but that information won't be released until we get the next update! In the meantime, check out this Chun Li combo video!

Friday
May292009

FUDDRUCKERS 'HYPE!' STREET FIGHTER 4 TOURNAMENT!


It's that time of the month again folks! The NorCal team ends the month with another major, as we expect to cap the tournament at 128 people again. Spots will be taken on a first-come first-serve basis, so if you're not there early to buy your spot, be prepared to bid for your spot! As I've said before, if you're from the area, make it out. If you're not from the area, figure a way to make it out. This tournament typically brings out the best of NorCal, and it's anyone's money for the taking! If you're new to the scene and worried about not placing very high in this tournament, just come out to hang out with the iPW crew! We'll show you guys the ropes, run you down on how things work, and show you guys what the scene is all about. There will be no articles on Saturday/Sunday because everyone is attending tournaments and events, so I will see you guys on Sunday, GET HYPE!

Wednesday
May272009

IPLAYWINNER.COM INVADES FANIME!

"Try this on for size!" A handsome man in his early thirties put on his best Ken impression and took the stage. Or, he would have taken the stage if it weren’t for a crew of six individuals, all ready to defame this impersonator. One of these individuals, a haughty Asian man in J-pop clothing, had a plan. He called for the easy button, and so it was set: Operation Make Voice Actor Look Silly.

Flash back to twenty minutes prior to this event and I'm here in front of this booth, signing my name on a sheet unbeknownst to the rest. A sheet so small--so hidden, that I couldn't possibly lose. I bid 20 dollars to face the voice actor of Ken Masters: Reuben Langdon.

"He's not really Ken Masters. Just a voice actor." Now, we’re back in present time, and I’m here out of a crew that bid from a max of 115 dollars to a low of twenty (mine). We get called one by one and show them, best out of three matches, how Street Fighter 4 should be played. Taunts ensued, ideals pursued, Youtube approved:

With a little gas, a little practice, and a lot of luck, maybe you can fight the next famous voice actor! A shout out to Mr. Langdon for doing this for charity and his good sportsmanship. Also, thank you to Milkiseph, Ninjai, and nussliw for providing the videos! Look forward to Crackfiend’s podcast with Mr. Langdon later! To learn more about the charity and Mr. Langdon, go here to see his blog on Fanime.


If you're not familiar with Fanime, it's an annual anime convention located in the heart of San Jose. Every year, it is held “for the fans, by the fans” and it continued this tradition onto 2009. Sure, fans are wild and things do get occasionally awkward, but if Fanime has anything right, it’s that the very thing that repels people away is what brings them in. Yes, that’s right. This love/hate relationship with the fans is what does it, at least for me. You never know if you might meet the scariest stalker or the coolest cat (both of which I met).

[Big thanks to Dave Treakle for the photos, check out his Flickr!]

Arcades from around the area brought life to the E-gaming room.  Fighters like Tekken 6, Blaz Blue, Third Strike, Marvel vs Capcom 2, and, of course, Street Fighter 4 were readily available and played. Even if you weren't a big fan of fighters, there were consoles that could be played free of charge and other arcade classics like Dance Dance Revolution and Para Para to play. And if that's not enough, then the tournaments might just be for you. The Street Fighter 4 tournament (sponsored by Play N' Trade) had a turnout of 102 players and even players like Scunsion could make it!

Enclosed here are a few interviews I got with the players Ninjai (a participant in the event with Mr. Langdon) and LPN (a competitor in the Fanime Street Fighter 4 tournament):

Coopa: How long have you been playing Street Fighter 4?

Ninjia: Since it came out in the US. My friend and I didn't reserve it, so we went all around San Jose to look for a free copy. We went to Gamestop, Play N' Trade, GameCrazy, Target, even Toys R' Us. Most of them said they were gonna get their shipment in tomorrow, which was kind of weird since it was supposed to be out THAT day. But we went to a GameCrazy back on Blossom Hill and they had leftovers...so we got lucky.

Click to read more ...

Wednesday
May272009

STREET FIGHTER IV ADDICTS?

Since Street Fighter IV came out I'm sure we've all heard it from someone close to us: "Aren't you playing this game just a little too much?" My excuse is that I'm "working on the website!" and it's worked fairly well so far, but I think my girlfriend is getting a little fed up with the non-stop gaming as well. I just hope she doesn't end up putting me on blazt like the girl in the video below!

Monday
May252009

KING OF FIGHTERS XII FIRST IMPRESSIONS

I finally had a chance to play King of Fighters XII last night and practice up for the big KOF Tournament next weekend in LA so I thought it would be a good idea to post up my initial impressions of the game. Bear with me in that this was the first time I had played a KOF game since like KOF '98..or maybe that one time I played 2002 in the arcade and got stomped by some 14 yr old kid, but anyway, yeah it's been a long time. Also, outside of SNK's website and a few threads on SRK, information on the actual game play system is fairly sparse so I didn't have much of a reference while playing.

Visually, as most of you know the game looks great. Everything from the backgrounds to the characters to the special effects have a ton of detail and it definitely gave me the sense that I was playing GAROU or SF3: 3s due to the fluid animation and speed. The visuals in KOFXII were quite refreshing since I've been playing Street Fighter 4 and BlazBlue so much over the past couple months. BlazBlue and Street Fighter 4 look great of course, but many of the animations in King of Fighters XII are much more fluid than anything else on the market right now.

The game obviously plays differently than CAPCOM and ARC System Works games and it took me a minute to get used to the controls, button layout and combo system. I found doing combos for certain characters (Kyo, Kim, Ryo) was far easier than combos with some other characters (Leona, Elizabeth, Iori) due to their more straight forward move sets. In previous games Iori has always been one of the characters on my team but they changed him so much that I really had no idea where to start with him. Kyo on the other hand, (another character I like to play in KOF series) was far easier to pick up and grasp since his move set is largely the same as previous games. Overall the majority of the cast was fairly easy to pick up and play, especially the grappler characters like Goro.

Probably the most satisfying aspect of King of Fighters XII is the Critical Counter system which is far easier to pick up than I had originally thought. It is essentially a custom combo system that activates when you land a standing Strong Attack (C) on counter hit and have an active Critical Counter meter (which depletes over time - nice touch to keep things somewhat balanced). Once you land the Strong Attack, you will see a large flash and a pause that indicates that its time to well, serve up a massive beat down to your opponent! You can easily link together any attacks you want and finish off with a super. There are a ton of serious combos you can do, linking multiple special moves and what not, but even if you are new to the game you wont have any problem creating your own sick looking combos.

Click to read more ...

Saturday
May232009

STREET FIGHTER 4: WEEKLY PSN GAME NIGHT EVENT STARTS TONIGHT!

Tonight Sony is starting a weekly Street Fighter 4 HOME Game launching event where you can gather with other Street Fighter fans in the HOME universe and well, talk smack and try to roast each other! Sounds fun right? Right!

This is a great way to unite all the SF4 players on HOME and it's really just the beginning in that they have plans to bring in special guests down the line! Hmmm.. I wonder who that could be? :)

Big ups to SCEA Community Manager Jared Rea for making this happen! Here are the details of the event, check it out.

WHAT: A weekly Street Fighter IV game launching event

WHERE: The Mall, 1st Floor at the PlayStation Home logo

WHEN: Every Saturday from 8PM to 12AM PST

Click to read more ...

Friday
May222009

KEYSTONE III: LIVE STREAM

Keystone III heats up tonight with a lot of heavy hitters in the house and lucky for you they are streaming the entire event starting at 7:30 PST! With some out of towners in NorCal there should be a ton of great matches tonight so be sure to check it out.

Thursday
May212009

UC DAVIS MUGA STREET FIGHTER 4 TOURNAMENT RECAP!

Last weekend, there were 3 tournaments (it's like that every weekend in NorCal now!), but the recap will be specifically about the UC Davis MUGA tournament that happened on Saturday. The tournament had a total of 48 entrants, and was full of surprises and upsets. That seems to be the running theme for Street Fighter 4 tournaments these days!



The first name worth mentioning is the up and coming Sagat player, Mark (Tharimrattler). Although he made a name for himself by beasting in Marvel with Colossus, from what I've been told, this cat practices Street Fighter 4 HARDCORE and it's his game of choice now. He also attends weekly tournaments in Suisun, CA and consistently places in the top 3.

All that practice and hardwork paid off in that he placed 1st at the MUGA tournament, sweeping me (Crackfiend) in the finals. This was another reminder that people are very hungry to take the #1 spot in SF4 these days, and playing his Sagat was a humbling experience to say the least.

Check out the match below! (More videos of the tournament at thnxyoutoo's YouTube channel)


Another name worth mentioning is Ryu player KOREA who eliminated me from the winners bracket with straight up GIMMICKS! He definitely got the best of me in the match with his unorthodox style of play and here is is an example: he does an uppercut to knock me down, whiffs a throw twice, and does it a third time to throw me! WHAT!? I was a sitting duck for gimmicks and could not figure out what was going on inside his mind! Oh well, good job KOREA!


The highlight of the day had to be Coopa vs Mark, in one of the closest finals I've seen so far in Street Fighter 4. It's one of those matches I just can't describe in words, you've got to see it for yourself!



Street Fighter 4
1. Tharimrattler (Sagat)
2. Crackfiend (Barlog)
3. Coopa (Zangief)

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May192009

KING OF FIGHTERS XII TOURNAMENT SLOT GIVE AWAY!

Want to play King of Fighters XII before its available in stores? Here's your chance!

iPlayWinner.com is offering two slots for the invite only 128 man King of Fighters XII tournament being held in Los Angeles, California hosted by Ignition Entertainment and SCEA on May 30th! If chosen, you will go up against the other competitors to win KOF merchandise and even an import only King of Fighters XII arcade cabinet!

Entering is very simple - post up in the comments section your full name, email, state that you live in and what makes you the KING (or Queen!) OF FIGHTERS! We're leaving it pretty wide open so you can submit stories of your most epic win in KOF, a video of your best KOF match - whatever! Just make it interesting!

We are also accepting submissions via email so if you're not comfortable posting your full name online you can email your entries to admin@iplaywinner.com. The deadline for entry is May 21st, 9pm PST and keep in mind you must cover all travelling costs to this event so make sure you have all of that squared away before entering! Good luck!

 

   

Monday
May182009

KING OF FIGHTERS XII: NEW IMAGES & VIDEO

Gaming site JEUXACTU posted over 200 new King of Fighters XII images from the XBOX360 version of the game showcasing much of the cast mid-special move. Lots of great screen shots over there but if seeing the game in motion is more your thing then check out the video below. This was posted in #capcom not too long ago and is one of the more impressive videos I've seen so far. The last Kyo combo is...well.. see for yourself!

Sunday
May172009

C. Viper is.. Captain Commando!?

Well not quite, but I found this one Ultra Crazy video on NeoGAF not too long ago that shows the similarities between move sets of both C. Viper and CapCom. I've been trying to learn Team Scrub in Marvel lately and not once did the similarities catch my eye, but they are hard to deny after seeing this!

Sunday
May172009

TATSUNOKO VS. CAPCOM COMING TO NORTH AMERICA.. BUT WAIT.. THERE'S MORE!

Yes, we've seen the Nintendo Power scans and I guess the cat is out of the bag: Tatsunoko vs. Capcom is coming to the States! We heard about this recently with other juicy details regarding the release but those will just have to wait until E3 - sorry!

Until then watch these videos for clues!

Friday
May152009

EXAR KING OF FIGHTERS XII ARCADE STICK UP FOR PRE-ORDER

      

Still in need of an arcade stick for your PlayStation 3? Well, if you can wait until July, EXAR is releasing two new sticks for the King of Fighters XII and they are both up for pre-order via Play-Asia.com.

There are two versions: one is based on their other sticks like the Tatsunoko vs. Capcom stick with a CAPCOM style 6 button layout, and the other is based on the old school Neo Geo arcade stick with a traditional 4 button SNK layout.

It obviously makes a bit more sense to go with the one with the 6 button layout if you play a lot of fighters, but I'm sure it's safe to say the NeoGeo Stick 2 will be very hard to find as time goes on so you may want to pick one of those babies up for the resale value alone.

PRE-ORDER EXAR KING OF FIGHTERS XII ARCADE STICK

PRE-ORDER NEO GEO 2 ARCADE STICK


Wednesday
May132009

BLAZBLUE: Hima (Arakune) vs Kaqn (Ragna)

I've recently started playing BlazBlue and I have to say it's really addicting once you get the hang of it. So far Ragna the Bloodedge is my main and using him has really helped me grasp BlazBlue's gameplay mechanics. A lot of people who I talk to seem a little intimidated by all the bars and gauges but it's really a lot easier to understand than it looks (so far anyway!).

I'm posting a video of Hima playing Arakune (who I understand to be like S+ tier in this game) and Kaqn, who is a top Street Fighter 4 C. Viper player playing Ragna. Even with my limited knowledge of the game, some of the rounds are really entertaining to watch. (check out more BlazBlue videos on GatlingSmash's channel)

To give those of you who know nothing about BlazBlue a better idea of what all the meters mean, I'll break it down real quick. There are character specific meters (see under Arakune's profile picture) as well but we wont get into those this time and of course if you're an expert feel free to correct me if I'm wrong!

Lifebar: You lose this, you die! Yeah thats right!

Barrier: This meter located below the life bar depletes as you use your Barrier Guard which is BlazBlue's "push block" system that will help you get some breathing room between you and your opponent. It will regenerate over time, but if you use a Barrier Burst (c-c-c-combo breaker!) you will lose it for the rest of that round.

Guard Libra: This is the meter right under the timer that acts as a "guard crush" meter so pay attention to this one when on the defensive.  When you are blocking if it fills up completely with your opponents color (red or blue) you will experience a Barrier Crush and be unable to guard. If you aren't paying attention, the orbs next to the timer will light up when you are close to a Barrier Crush.

Heat Gauge: This is more or less your "Super Meter" in BlazBlue. Anytime you have two stocks (50%) you can perform either a Distortion Drive (Super) or Rapid Cancel (more or less what a Roman Cancel is in Guilty Gear or what an EX Focus Attack Dash Cancel is in Street Fighter 4.) You lose it all after the round is up so no need to feel guilty (no pun intended) about burning meter in this game!

   

Wednesday
May132009

STREET FIGHTER 4 TOURNAMENTS AND EVENTS FOR NORCAL IN MAY!

Picture by Matelandia at Deviant Art 

The month of May is going to a busy month. Here's the current schedule of events that I know of so far in my calendar:

May 15th - Keystone III Ranbat (Ranking Battle)

Formerly known as the Cannery Dojo, Joshua (Owner of Cannery Dojo) and Albert (Owner of Keystone II) have teamed up to create Keystone III, and are now holding weekly Ranbats for the community.

May 16th - UC Davis Muga Street Fighter 4 Tournament

Way out in UC Davis holds a monthly tournament featuring upcoming players such as Matt (Pieguy) and Sean H. (Coopa) who are hungry to take the throne and mark themselves as one of the top competitors in NorCal.

Click to read more ...

Tuesday
May122009

G4: SETH KILLIAN COMMUNITY UPDATE