By killacam 9 Comments
I'm not exactly a newb when it comes to fighting games. I can make Ryu hadouken AT LEAST 75% of the time. And if you're going to try to take me down when I've got my Sub-Zero threads on, bring some hot chocolate and a sweater. But even with this wealth of dedication and experience under my belt, playing Skullgirls is an ordeal, man. After dozens upon dozens of minutes spent helplessly crouched and blocking, breaking only for the occasional panicked "combo", my foray into Skullgirls has suddenly reached both a new high and a self-image-shattering low: "Waiting for a Tier 1 Opponent".
My first online match was a jaw-droppingly abrupt "battle" spent among the gods of Tier 4, followed by a similarly instantaneous game with a Tier 3 fighter. I could almost feel my opponent's gratitude for having his climb to the summit of Skullgirls' Mount Olympus made effortless by the likes of me. But I refused to give up! Onwards and downwards I trudged, hoping to soon reach a comfortable level at which I could learn alongside other learners. I dreamed of a day when as one we would rise to the top of the Skullgirls hierarchy, demolishing all who stood before us with gorgeously fluid combos. Instead, I was greeted with the emotional hills and far-more-frequent valleys of Tier 2.
At first glance, I thought I may actually be able to hold my own against these opponents. I wasn't entirely wrong. Now I could survive for more than 5 seconds! And, through what I can only assume to be luck, I even took down a couple opponents, most of whom I'm fairly sure were either mentally unstable or infants. Likely both. These occasional victories bred within me a bliss that would last only until the next battle started, and kept me prisoner to Tier 2's purgatory much longer than my skill alone would dictate. But hey, at least I wasn't being knocked from one side of my screen to the other for the entire round. Maybe now I could take these few micromoments of control and try out some of those chains that worked so well against a lifeless training dummy, maybe top it off with a special or, dare I dream, a blockbuster. It's only fair that I too get to put into action whatever the tutorial was trying to teach that was apparently so practical and relevant for everyone else, right?!
Maybe I should've just gone through the tutorial a third time. I must keep skipping through the lesson that begins with "but all this is useless unless you...". Who knows. But now I'm finally where I should be, and it is here among the lowest of the low where I will carve my own way through this sexy cartoon world. Button Mashers of the First Tier beware, I'm coming for you.. One sluggishly executed combo at a time.