It’s been a week and I’ve been practicing. Thought I’d outline the training process I went through and what my goals were.
I started with Challenge Mode. My intent was to see how far I could get with Yukiko, my chosen character. I was able to complete 22 of her challenges with relative ease, a few tricky ones taking me some extra tries. Some of the remaining challenges seem doable but didn’t seem like useful enough combos (especially for a newbie like myself) to bother learning. I wrote down the ones that seemed most useful like her bread-and-butter A,A,B,C,c.C, Agi combo. These combos were my focus when I moved on to Arcade mode.
Arcade Mode is where I chose to do most of my training. I know that AI is a poor substitute for a fighting a real player but I figured it would let me get the basics down like blocking and poking. For the most part, I felt like it was good practice. The AI does seem quite aggressive, even on characters that seem more defensive like Naoto. It didn’t give me many chances to practice using my Persona combos where she flies out behind the opponent. I did practice my basic combos and started to get a better feel for the timings and ranges of my moves.
I steadily increased the difficulty when I was comfortable and pushed it all the way to the hardest difficulty, Hell. As I pushed up the difficulty, I started to see the intricacies of the different characters better. For example, Yu has some pretty decent high-low mixup with his jumping sword strikes and his electric dash along the ground. I had some trouble figuring this out at first, learning where to block at the right times.
It really surprised me how decent Arcade Mode felt as a training tool for playing online. I’m sure I’m not as prepared as I think but I am at least comfortable with the way the game plays, enough so that I feel I can finally try some online. This week, I plan to stick entirely to lobby matches and save the ranked stuff for later on. If you want to give me a hand in learning to play, feel free to add me as a friend or invite me to a lobby when I’m on. My PSN ID is the same as my username here. Please don’t just invite me so you can beat my ass; I would prefer friendly players that are near my skill level, if at all possible.
Wish me luck!