Tuesday, April 5, 2016

JJROCKETS' Weekly Wrap Up - 03/28/16 - 04/03/16

I haven't written anything on here in a long while, but I wanted to get back into it. I decided I would start a weekly wrap up series where I cover how I did at every tournament I went to that week and talk about the tournaments for a bit. Hopefully I can stay consistent in writing these! Comment if you like these and want to see more or if you have anything else you'd like to see me write about!

Tuesday at Poplar Creek Bowl – Hoffman Estates, IL:
1st/10 in doubles with Big_Mak
2nd/34 in singles

Doubles at Poplar Creek was interesting on Tuesday. Originally I had planned on teaming with Dan, but he decided not to go at the last minute so I had to find another teammate. Luckily Big_Mak was available so we decided to team for the first time. Our synergy was surprisingly not bad and we managed to get a lot of follow ups from each other’s throws. On top of that our individual 1v1 play was better than any of the other teams, and because of that we won the tournament pretty convincingly.
In singles my bracket was fairly easy until I made it winner’s semi where I had to play against Big_Mak. This was our first time playing since the new patch and Sheik nerfs. In our last encounter he beat me 3-1 after some sloppy play from the both of us. I was pretty confident that he would struggle because of the nerfs to Sheik and I think that Diddy now does a lot better in the match up. However, he was playing on point. Until he got pinappled on Dreamland game 2 that is. Without that SD I think he would’ve taken the set 2-0, but instead I was able to barely squeak out a win.
In Winner’s finals I got to play Ned, who was the first seed of the tournament. He has recently been beating me solidly with his Cloud, and this time was no exception. I put up a strong first two games to get an early 2-0 lead, but he eventually caught on to my patterns and I wasn’t able to close out the set.
Loser’s finals was a rematch against Big_Mak, but this time he wasn’t playing nearly as well as in our winner’s bracket match. Because of that I took the set pretty clean 3-0 and earned a rematch against Ned in grands. Ned’s momentum that he had from the end of the first set was able to carry over, and unfortunately for me he was able to take the set 3-0.

Wednesday at Ignition - Chicago, IL:
2nd/58 in singles

Wednesday morning I watched over all my matches against Big_Mak and Ned and took some notes on the match up to try to apply this time. I was really hungry for the rematch with Ned because I thought I could definitely take him this time now that I had a better feeling for the match up in my head at least.  However, Ignition is almost always the hardest weekly in Chicagoland, and tonight had a ton of great players. I would have to play hard to earn my rematch against Ned.
Due to some upsets on my side of the bracket, I was able to breeze through my first 3 rounds of winner’s bracket all the way to winner’s semi-finals. Here I had to play against my crew mate GGA.NiTe. Historically NiTe has always been one of my harder match ups. Rosalina does very well against Diddy and it can be a very frustrating match up to play. Just a few days ago he beat me 2-0 twice at the GGA weekly. I managed to take the first game of the set this time, but when NiTe answered back with a solid win game two on his counter pick we were put into an intense game three scenario. It was close with both of us on our last stocks at low percents, and he hit me with an up air string that killed me at only 40%. I had no idea how I ended up getting hit by it, but after rewatching the set it turns out I accidently did a neutral air for no reason and fell right into his second up air. Oops.
My next matches in loser’s would prove to be difficult. First I had to take on Sheen’s Sheik who was playing pretty well that night. I had a few missed inputs that almost killed me, but I was luckily able to survive and continue to put pressure on him. I kept being aggressive as to not let him keep a distance from me and it paid off and I was able to get the win.
In loser’s semi-finals I was now up against Naoto, the Lil Mac main who had beaten me in the two previous encounters. From thinking about those matches I felt like I had just played them too aggressively, so this time I tried to just stay back and keep my distance as much as I could. Game one he gave me a scare when he took my first stock early with a smash attack, but pretty quickly within respawning I found a grab to throw him offstage and get the down smash to end his stock. It ended up coming down to a close game three, but since I had a slight lead I was able to wait with a banana until he made a mistake and finish the set with a banana to forward smash.
Loser’s finals of this tournament was very interesting. It’s hard to explain exactly what went down so I’ll just leave a link to it. It was a rematch against NiTe and we both ended up playing pretty well and there were a ton of close games and come backs within this set. I ended up barely clutching it out game 5 when he air dodged to the ground unsafely on his last stock.
I did it! I was able to get my much desired rematch! I felt very much prepared for this match, and game one I proved it. I won with a convincing two stock. The only problem was that after that he just won the next 3 pretty solidly. I was happy with it though, there were definitely moments in my gameplay that showed that I was improving in the match up. I’d just have to go back to the lab even harder next time and try again.

Saturday at House of Paign X – Champaign, IL:
2nd/15 in doubles with NiTe
2nd/43 in singles

After my disappointing performance at Outfoxx’d and seeing Tyroy do so well, I wanted to go down to House of Paign and get a chance to play him in bracket. This tournament had a $100 pot bonus for singles, so it would make the matches a little bit more interesting despite the only $5 entry fee here.
In doubles I was teaming with NiTe for the first time at a big event. We didn’t have too much synergy to begin with but as the day went on we definitely were improving in that department. In winner’s finals of doubles we brought Tyroy and Moniker to a very close game 5 where I ended up dying early to a Bayonetta combo on my last stock. RIP. In grands we changed up our plan a little bit to try to minimize the risk of being carried to the top by Bayonetta, and it worked for a while and we were able to get the bracket reset. In the first game of the second set, I died from a Bayonetta combo literally from 0%, and that kind of set the tone for the rest of the match. We went on a tilt a little bit after being killed so early so many times and they ended up with the win.
Singles bracket I was seeded third behind NiTe, but I requested to be the fourth seed to be on the other side of the bracket. This way I wouldn’t have to play my teammate and I would get a chance to fight Tyroy. In winner’s semi-finals we finally met for the first time since he picked up Bayonetta. My game plan was simple: play as lame as possible to avoid getting death combo’d. It worked fairly well and game one was really close but he clutched it out. The second game he went Sheik for some reason and I was able to win, but the third game he switched back to Bayonetta. This paid off for him and he won convincingly.
After that loss I was talking to Zinoto a bit about the match up because he was able to beat Tyroy the weekend before. After getting a few pointers, I really wanted to try them out but I had to get through loser’s finals and NiTe to do so. This actually ended up being easy because NiTe pretty much just conceded the match to me because he didn’t want to deal with Bayonetta gain. Thanks, NiTe.
Grands ended up being actually not that interesting. I won the first game using Zinoto’s tips, but I wasn’t able to keep my composure after he continually comboed me for ridiculous percents. He won 3-1 and I was kind of salty. I really hate Bayonetta as a character and I do honestly think she is going to start killing the game. Driving home that night I kept debating about whether or not I should just pick her up myself to get some easier wins, but decided I would just focus my efforts on improving in the game with Diddy against the other characters. I’m going to play with the assumption that she will either be banned or nerfed in the near future, and in that case investing any time into her would be a waste in the long run.

Sunday at Galloping Ghost Arcade’s Sunday Smash – Brookfield, IL:
2nd/6 in doubles with Demitus
1st/35 in singles

The best part about the smash scene right now is that if you get salty after an event, you don’t have to wait until the tourney next month to try again. You get to play the next day half the time LOL. So at this GGA the big names in bracket would once again be me, NiTe, and Ned. I was on NiTe’s side of the bracket, and we met in winner’s semis for the third time this week. I suppose that’s what happens when seeding is pretty much static.
Since reviewing my long five game set against NiTe at Ignition, I felt very comfortable fighting Rosalina for the first time in a while. I felt like I knew what I needed to do, and I was able to execute it pretty well. This was my most convincing win on NiTe in a long time, taking the set 2-0.
In winner’s finals I expected to play Ned, but he actually ended up losing earlier in the bracket to Bushi’s Bayonetta, so it looks like I’d get a second chance at this match up for the week. I played the same way I did against Tyroy, but probably even more patient this time. I noticed early in the set that he was having trouble chasing my upward DI when I was getting comboed and that he liked to shield a lot. I was able to capitalize on those things and win the set 3-1.
The upsets didn’t continue in loser’s finals, and I got the expected rematch against Ned. This set ended up being probably the sloppiest that either of us had played in a while. We both SDed a few too many times this set and flubbed way too many punishes. He got the bracket reset on me, and then got an early 2-1 lead on me in the second set. For my counterpick I didn’t want to go to Smashville which I had just lost on, so I asked if he would agree to play on Town and City, even though I had won game one of the set there (had he said no I would have gone to Duck Hunt). He agreed and it worked a lot better for me. It was very close but I barely won it. His counterpick for the fifth and final game of the set was to Duck Hunt, which I was okay with since it is kind of like Final Destination for most of the time. I got an early lead in percent but he got the first kill with a limit break. I was able to run it all the way back after that though, and when we were both at kill percents last stock he went for a limit side B and I somehow beat it out with my falling fair and quickly found an up smash after that to end the set. Despite how sloppy that entire set was for the two of us, I was really happy I managed to get a win against Ned’s Cloud under my belt. He had been very consistent against me recently and it was time I finally got him back.
Overall this week went very well for me. I started beating NiTe consistently again, and I won against Ned again. Between doing well at all these tournaments and watching Pound 2016 on stream I have renewed a drive to improve at this game. I’ve been putting in many more hours of practice this week than I normally do, and it already was showing in my results. I want to increase my training regimen soon and see how far I can go. I don’t want to stop at winning tournaments in Chicago. I’ve set my sights higher. I want to start winning out of state tournaments and be known as one of the best Diddy players. It’s going to be a long and difficult road but I know that I can do it, one step at a time.

Next week I’ll be attending We Livin’ 8 in Davenport, IA and Galloping Ghost Arcade’s Sunday Smash in Brookfield, IL.

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