Monday, March 05, 2012

Kusoru wins UMVC3 at Final Round XV

So I didn't go this year.
Plane ticket to Atlanta cost a lot plus I was feeling out of motivation for fighting games in general and all.
But man oh man was it amazing to streammonster.

First off, any "anime" fighting game player worth his salt knows who Kusoru is.
If you've got the five gods of fighting games in Japan, you also have the five kusoge (shitty games) gods as their dark mirror.
Kusoru is one, the common joke is he is the weakest member.
His SBO resume is full of shitty game achievements:
SBO08 Hokuto no Ken qualifier
SBO09 Tatsunoko vs Capcom champion
SBO10 Sengoku Basara X Top 8

Kusoru got his start in Guilty Gear, a decidedly not kuso (according to Japan anyway) game where he refused to play seriously.
Or rather, he had extremely strong game sense to the point where he would just abuse it to make you play at his trollish nonsensical rhythm.
Things like constant inefficient RCs off the weirdest moves, wake up supers, using bad supers in general, that kind of thing.
His name came from the combination of kuso (shit) and Soru (sol), which he admitted himself was his level in the game.
"I am not good at Guilty Gear in Japan."
That's more or less Kusoru and Guilty Gear.
While he didn't find much tournament success, he built up a name for himself as being a masterful troll who could sometimes rob top players of wins by being a complete clownface.

Kusoru and Marvel vs Capcom 3.

This might sound harsh, but one of the things about the kusoge gods is that they refuse to play what the Japanese consider legitimate fighting games.
Or rather, they refuse to play them seriously.
Instead, they devote all their effort to playing really shitty broken games at the highest levels for fun.
Games like Hokuto no Ken, where you can combo into Instant Kills or literally bounce your opponents across the stage to absurd heights by hitting them enough times.
Games like Fate Unlimited Codes, where full screen instant overheads and completely ambiguous camera cross-ups are the norm.
This is why Tokido, while playing tons of fighters, even what some Americans dub "anime" fighters such as Blaz Blue, is viewed as a legitimate fighting game god and not a kusoge god.
Even when he played Vanilla Marvel 3, he played it his way, and the same way he plays almost all his games, finding the most efficient and cheapest shit he knew, and abusing the hell out of it.
He basically played MVC3 from an American's point of view at an American level.
Let's get this straight right away, Marvel vs Capcom 3 and its upgrade Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 are not viewed as good fighters in Japan.
They fall squarely into the kusoge camp.
The same was true for MVC2, which was pretty much dead empty when I visited Japan (everyone was on CVS2).
However, there are quite a few differences between the backgrounds for the games, and they lead to very different outcomes in Japan's scene.

MVC2 was solely developed by Capcom.
A pretty lazy Capcom JP, but Capcom nonetheless, with literally no balance attempts made, nothing thought over, a gigantic mishmash stew of ideas and characters thrown together.
Japan was not willing to forge this mess into anything, but the USA scene was perfectly willing to beat on this game until it became something worth showing to others.
Let's face it, no one was interested in 3rd Strike back then, KOF and GG were fringe, and 3D fighters were another universe to 2D players.
The only other game that had interest was CVS2, which required a different skillset and mindset.
MVC2's tech and gameplay is something wholly American and unique, and while the community was not as insular as say Smash, the game had pretty high walls to scale on entry.
The tech evolved so far that it actually looped back upon itself, unfortunately its insular nature was also its bane.
Everyone loved watching Marvel, but it was actually losing entrants.
However it probably could have ran on fumes in America for a long long time...until Capcom woke up and made Street Fighter 4.

MVC3 is quite a different beast.
First, it was developed by Capcom and Eighting.
Eighting developed previous games for Capcom before, including the decidedly kusoge Fate Unlimited Codes and Tatsunoko vs Capcom, which was kusoge to the Japanese cause it was broken as shit, and was kusoge to the Americans because it wasn't named Marvel vs Capcom.
However, there is no way Capcom could make Marvel vs Capcom 3 the same way as they made Marvel vs Capcom 2.
Marvel vs Capcom 2 wasn't thought out at all, was made 10+ years ago by throwing tons of character ideas into a blender, beating it with a hammer by Americans for a lot more years while getting rid of all the impurities (all the useless characters) and forged into a sword.
Marvel vs Capcom 3 was a very calculated move, more or less Capcom brought in a developer known for making broken games, and asked them to try to make a plastic replica copy of that 10 year old sword.
Whether they did an ok job or failed miserably is still up for debate.

The use of Eighting made Marvel vs Capcom 3 feel way closer to Japanese "anime" combo based fighters than ever before.
Even with the lower execution, imported systems from MvC2, and English-focused release, the game always felt like a Japanese localization of MVC2.
Japan more or less agreed.
Because of all the silly systems, the game was still relegated to kusoge, but not kusoge of the untouchable kind such as MVC2 or Smash.
Instead, it attained the status of regular old kusoge, and with that title, came the kusoge gods.

Kusoge players don't play to win.
There I said it, the great anti-Sirlin line.
Or rather they do, but there is almost nothing at stake for them besides their own love of the game.
If you beat them, you have proven yourself a more devoted fan of shitty games than they have, and they will actually be happy for you and with you.
I sincerely believe Kusoru loves Marvel vs Capcom 3 precisely because it is at its heart, a fun but bad game.
I also sincerely believe he loves Sengoku Basara X, the game he flashed on stream after defeating Flip Champ, for the exact same reasons, although that game hurts me to think about it.
He plays for something completely different than most of the people he beat at Final Round.
Of course there's pride but it's a different sort of pride than the traditional "popping off" pride of Marvel, like that of a B-movie fanatic or a campy comic collector, he plays purely out of a love of terrible games.

This mentality is 100% in opposition to most of the American Marvel scene and unfortunately leads to the obvious conclusion:
Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 is a terrible game.
Not only that, it is a terrible "anime" game, because we are somehow losing not to a legitimate player like Tokido fighting on our terms with our tech, but an illegitimate player like Kusoru fighting on his own terms with his own tech.
Speaking of tech, I found it pretty convenient that everyone forgot Kusoru was the first person to discover the DHC glitch back in Vanilla.
But Kusoru's tech at FR (and all the hilarious wrong things people did against it) is a wall of text for another day.
Until then, I guess take a lesson from Kusoru.

Play for the love of the game.
Or get log trapped.


Uberpr0 said...


Anonymous said...

Japanese people do not think MvC3 or UMvC3 are kusoge...just because it's not popular does not make the game shitty. You're the first person I've ever heard refer to them as kusoge.

Anonymous said...

I hope we can see Kusoru's beautiful display start a movement in the fighting game community. A movement that brings a new breed of fighter to the table in tournaments, one that takes a character into the spotlight, and gives it love, rather than taking a top-tier character loadout into countless money-matches and chest-beating competitions. I am sick of what the American fighting game scene has become, and I hope Kusoru is the catalyst for the change we need.

Anonymous said...

Huh so you're saying Kusoru was the only one playing because he liked the game? Interesting. The hundreds/thousands of hours that so many american Marvel players put into the game is out of...#esports?

Oh man. The 50+ marvel players in my local scene are going to be so sad when I tell them that they don't really love the game because they don't behave the way some Japanese players do. And even sadder when I tell them that marvel is a shitty game because the Japanese don't play it!

Anonymous said...

You guys are reading some interesting sentiments into the article.

And if you read 2ch at all, you'll see a ton of people referring to marvel as a kusoge. Tons.

Anonymous said...

Whether it's terrible or not is a matter of opinion. I love marvel =]

But I do think that Kusoru exposed usa not as bad players but definitely not as willing to explore and put work into underused characters, both playing as and against.

That being said it's hard to argue with using high powered and easy tech since tournaments are high stakes and the best path should generally be the easiest.

Anonymous said...

It's not a matter of opinion, have you never seen how many glitches Marvel games have? The Evil Dead looked like shit next to the bigger budget horror films of its time, but people still find enjoyment in it and think its campiness is charming. It's the same thing here - jokes like HNK is the official video game of the NBA is a reflection of people who still enjoy these badly designed/programmed video games

Anonymous said...

>And even sadder when I tell them that marvel is a shitty game because the Japanese don't play it!

You're interpreting it wrong. Japanese don't play UMvC3 because it's a shitty game, not the other way around (other than by kusoge players, thus, the topic of the post). He never even suggested Kusoru as the only one who likes UMvC3 playing, in fact he specifically wrote that kusoge players are happy when they lose because it means the player who won likes the game more than they do, for the love of God read before you make a comment. Or better yet go back to stream monstering.

Anonymous said...

Sorry but even with any glitches the whole terrible-or-not dilemma is still a matter of opinion!

Don't really wanna argue that so anyway Kusoro is a great player and he did great things at FR.

Thank you for the insight mr blogger u have a new follower.

However, I will most likely pass on allowing Japan, the USA, or any other party's individual viewpoint on a game color my enjoyment of it, competitive or otherwise.

Anonymous said...

"You're interpreting it wrong. Japanese don't play UMvC3 because it's a shitty game, not the other way around (other than by kusoge players, thus, the topic of the post)"
And here's the thing about kusoge players, it screams of hipster to me. If you play a game for hundreds of hours and have fun playing it then it is a good game. This whole "I ironically play this because it's bad." thing is hilarious to me because here in the US we call those people tools. You are a tool if you think this whole "kusoge" shtick has any merit whatsoever.

"He never even suggested Kusoru as the only one who likes UMvC3 playing"

"Play for the love of the game.
Or get log trapped.".

The last two lines are a jab at pretty much every American marvel player at FR. Insinuating that players lost because they play for something other than the love of the game is both insulting and at the same time fucking hilarious because it speaks volumes about how little the author knows of the players and the scene. As do you.

" in fact he specifically wrote that kusoge players are happy when they lose because it means the player who won likes the game more than they do, for the love of God read before you make a comment. Or better yet go back to stream monstering."

"Kusoge" players are also tools who ironically play games they think are shit because they find it amusing. This whole blog post was a really awkward way of saying "this game is shit because Japanese gaming hipsters say so". And it's funny you mentioned stream monsters because the summed up version of this blog post is something I would expect to find on a stream chat.

It's you, you are the stream monster!

onReload said...

No, no, no..."Hipster" is the wrong word for it. Hipsters don't actually like the things they wear/talk about/etc.

These guys LOVE these games and enjoy them, but know they're badly designed. I like a lot of games that are obviously badly designed, or have stupid elements, but if I had to say what a "good" fighting game is in terms of design for most people...No, I don't think I would nominate my favorite, which is 3rd Strike.

So he likes MvC3 and is not making fun of it by winning, or making fun of Americans for liking it. He just knows it's not the classic that GG or ST is.

Anonymous said...

i want to defend the kusoge players they're not tools they are not the only ones who think the game is shit they play the game because they're having fun even though they know it's a crap game they dont really care about opinions and shit...they play those games with no goals doesn't really care if they win or not..look at Kusoru's matches he was always smiling and having one even said MVC3 and UMVC3 are a crap game but i must say kusoru proved that in mvc3 Tier Lists are useless.....for the guy who's bashing the author, you're just a bitter stream monster.

Fuzzy Bunny said...

I didn't know where all these new readers came from, and then I saw you were on the front page of SRK. Good shit.

Anonymous said...

Kusoge players are far from hipsters and tools, you need to implement some shades of grey to your game man. Me and a couple of buddies also like playing stupidly broken fighting games. We don't do it because we want to be unique or different, we do it because they're so fucking broken it's hilarious to fuck around in them. Landing sick combos on each other and laugh hysterically. Having a good time instead of being salty pretentious faggots.

Anonymous said...

"no one even said MVC3 and UMVC3 are a crap game"

did you read the same article i did?

Anonymous said...

you insinuated that it's a crap game because it is being played by kusoge players and it's not as popular there........your trolling wont work pal go troll in the srk stream

Anonymous said...

Reading these comments is making me lose faith in the fgc, how can people think this game is good with the overwhelming evidence against it that it's bad?

For my sake, I'll just hope you're all retarded or trolls, and hope to god that you all don't actually think the only reason insinuated in this article for the game being bad is that the japanese don't play it. In fact, the game is so obviously kusoge on its own it's laughable to even debate such a thing, when xfactor and the sort clearly exist.

Good read, though.

Anonymous said...

Everyone has their OWN tastes. Just because YOU may think something is bad doesn't mean it is. I bet most of you saying the game is bad are ugly but you're mothers would disagree. Kusoge that bitch.

Anonymous said...

Can someone post a link to the original DHC Vanilla MVC3 post where Kusoru is credited?

Anonymous said...

Author obviously never went to a FG major and has no interest in going to one, because he isn't appreciating the fact that thousands of dollars was spent by the FR organizers for Kusoru to body USA. And those who travel to majors spent hundreds of dollars out of their own pockets to get bodied by the best players. That's how the FGC works, and if everyone had the same attitude Kusoru had you can be sure the FGC wouldn't be as big as it is currently.

If Kusoru gets sponsored to a trip to EVO he will have the responsibility to body more USA fools just like he did for FR. And he just doesn't want that responsibility.

d3v said...

Wouldn't it be more accurate to say that, with as game as young as UMvC3, most folks simply didn't know about that Racoon tech?

Anonymous said...

The whole kusoge term is .... kusoge ;) When i see kusoru playing, i see a guy who spent many hours playing and training, thinking about setups (anty phoenix) i don't give a shit on his opinion on the game because its a lie. He loves the game, you can see it. umvc gives him option to troll with his unique team, that's why this game is so cool. It's the game for tournament pros, combo creators, casual gameing and even kusoge players.

Sibby said...

Man I wrote this at 4AM before work while half asleep and then fubar blows me up.

Anyway, to address whatever:
How popular a game is has nothing to do with whether it is kusoge or not.
Kusoge can be a term of endearment, and it can be a term of insult, it works both ways.

I live in NJ (used to be NY). I've gone to EVO since 2009. I went to FRXIII. I've been to pretty much every NEC. Most tournaments I've gone to have not been for a big stage game, but I totally enjoy playing the games I go for, kusoge or no kusoge. My own personal sliding scale of "legitimacy" is irrelevant to anyone else's scale, but I'm pretty confident about Marvel being viewed as kusoge in Japan.

To d3v, this is true.
No one knew about log trap.
Quite honestly I thought kusoru would get blown up in the USA, though I was rooting for him.
And teams seemed to confirm it, as we saw ranmasama OCV team Japan handily.
I don't mean to imply that USA lost because they didn't love the game more.
This post (please don't call it an article it feels bad) was more an attempt to explain where kusoru comes from, and why he plays.
It was more in response to the reports that he was dodging MMs.
With all the MM seekers who wanted matches to "prove" something or "get revenge" for something it probably came off as a contrast to what he was expecting, that is MMs "for fun."
He has as much pride as our best players, but it's just a different sort of pride.
Like if you watched Final Round's streams of not Marvel games, lots of people spamming why their game is "better" or whatever.
To kusoru, it honestly doesn't matter.
He doesn't care if Marvel is "better as a game" than AE 2012, Tekken, SC5, etc.
He just loves the game for what it is.

The last two lines are the result of my personal bias, and me struggling to find some way to end this post. If I wanted to feed you some garbage I would say that I feel they totally apply to SFXT's release, and all the people playing it for pop off reasons or staged rivalry reasons or esports reasons. But really it was me being tired and wanting to close this shit out.

spankminister said...

The US absolutely has a kusoge scene: look at the attitude of the XvsSF scene. It's a niche community that plays for the love of the game. The people who are the faces of that scene generally have a pretty general, fun-loving outlook, there's far less salt and egos on the line.

I don't see this as a US vs. Japan attitude issue so much as the most serious competitive people in each country gravitate to different games, and kusoge attracts people who don't want that high stakes rivalry atmosphere. It isn't that people get salty when they lose, they're happy to see someone else do some absurd combo to them because the game is totally busted.

Given the size of the Marvel scene in this country, I don't think we'll ever see that sort of niche crowd gain prominence.

Anonymous said...

I used to think Marvel was a bad game until I played rreally goos players. Cheap strategies are usually gimmicks and can be beaten by solid play. game knowledge is really important in this game since there are some silly strategies. You need good reaction time and very fast decision making to be good at this game. I don't think it's bad. I just think it's really hard to be solid in.

Unknown said...

i don't know why people have such a hard time differentiating between popularity and status.

macdonalds is shit food. everyone knows it, yet it's eaten by BILLIONS every week. everyone knows it's shit, but it tastes good and people eat it.

same with shit games. 'everyone' knows marvel is a shit game, yet it's played by tons of players.

just because it's a shitty game, doesn't make it an un-fun game... and people like kusoru doesn't play a shitty game that's also not fun - otherwise they wouldn't be spending hours and hours trying to figure it out.

so stop being so defensive about trying to take marvel 'to the next level'. it's a shitty ass game and leave it at that, and have fun playing it if you love it.

it doesn't make someone a shitty person for playing a shitty game or having fun with it. but it does mean that people who are aware that it's a shitty game and still play it are 1. more objective and self-aware, 2. possibly have a more passionate drive than others.

i think that's what the original article was getting at instead of all the weird japan/US distinction some of you guys might have read too much into than needed.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Anon here again lol

Good points with that last post we really should avoid using anyone's personal views and attitude toward a game to validate or invalidate our enjoyment of said game, even if he did win a major.

It's mostly just people subconsciously trying to evangelize their own favorite games to others lol. I could jump on every blog and do the same thing with Virtua Fighter. So yeah take care guys lol!

Anonymous said...

I think "broken" is a better translation than "shitty."

Anonymous said...

I think the competitive FGC tends to forget that even though fighting games are fairly niche, they are a very small percentage of the people who buy them. That's true for any e-sport. From a developer stand-point you're going to make a game that's going to be appreciated by that larger percentage.

Arttronik said...

I loved this! I think more people here in the US should play for the love of games. The arrogance of the competitive fighting game community is a turn off. I continue to play the games I like with friends. I suppose I'm an American "kusoge" player.

I loved watching Kusoru at Final Round for this reason alone! Best of luck int the future!

Anonymous said...

"Tatsunoko vs Capcom, which was kusoge to the Japanese cause it was broken as shit, and was kusoge to the Americans because it wasn't named Marvel vs Capcom."

NO, wrong. It was kusoge to Americans because it was on the Wii.

Anonymous said...

"it is a terrible "anime" game, because we are somehow losing not to a legitimate player like Tokido fighting on our terms with our tech, but an illegitimate player like Kusoru fighting on his own terms with his own tech"

NO. also wrong. It is a GREAT game because you have so many levels of tech. Not just the...'this is how you win with Ryu' tech.

Anonymous said...

Such a fucking pretentious article and poster... it reminds me of Tim Rogers stuff... wait, are you Tim???

Anonymous said...

Kusoru isn't coming back, because hipsters are pussies.

I also agree with the guy who said you are a pretentious douche.

Anonymous said...

this writing is unbelievably horrific. buy a copy of strunk and white, some Flannery O'Connor letters, or a Sunday New York Times. And read it.

Anonymous said...

Sigh, ok OP, let me explain FRXV for you. Kusoru did not win based on skill. He won based on technicality. How many people play against good RR/Joe's/SOME Frank Wests?

If people actually played these guys, the results wouldn't have been so revealing.

Kusoru played a good game. I'll give him that. However, thinking that it wasn't primarily due to unknown tech is delusional. The cultural mumbo jumbo is just brain masturbation.

Anonymous said...

Wow, I have never read an article written by someone who had Japan's cock shoved so deep down their throat until now.

Anonymous said...

So much salt. Only people to blame are yourselves for putting so much nationalism on the line over a video game.

Anonymous said...

Jesus crhist dude, could you suck Japan's cock while jerking off to hentai anymore?

Anonymous said...

Jesus crhist dude, could you suck Japan's cock while jerking off to hentai anymore?

Anonymous said...

I don't think anyone denies MvC3 as not broken or ass, I think every top player has said it at least once. It's just America's favorite crazy as fuck past time. It's nearly a tradition, embedded in our culture.

You come off as weeaboo as fuck and after looking around your blog it just reassures that impression. I have no idea what your overall impression for American players or American people in general, but I'm getting an overall negative tone from your post. I think you need to get out more and I think you knew that when you wrote this or you wouldn't have to list your participation in majors and your '09er Evo status.

Step outside, but don't just stand there. Step outside and talk to people and not just to communicate about the topic on hand, but to get to know the person and share an understand. This is something so simple, yet has been practically loss for some people in this day and age.

Your service has been disconnected.

Anonymous said...

everyone saying garbage like, "stop sucking JP's cock" and "your writing style sucks" sounds super butt-hurt with the ad hominem attacks. u mad ur game sucks and a kusoge god exposed you all. stay free.

Anonymous said...

Since everyone is anonymous, I'll have to quote the comment I want to directly respond to:

"Sigh, ok OP, let me explain FRXV for you. Kusoru did not win based on skill. He won based on technicality. How many people play against good RR/Joe's/SOME Frank Wests?"

A technicality, because Americans didn't know most of Kusoru's characters? Do you put an asterisk beside any tournament won where one player knew something that another player didn't?

The lack of knowledge, to me, is arguably indicative of a "play to win" attitude over "play to enjoy the game and have fun".

The American players didn't know what Rocket could do because they didn't have experience against good Rocket players. But why didn't they have experience against good Rocket players? Saying "they didn't have time to learn" is a bit of a cheat.

The implication is that they didn't have experience against good Rocket players because Rocket wasn't seen as a good enough character to win with. The implication is that the better American players were focused on winning over just having fun with the game. They weren't going to put the time into Rocket when there were surer and more accepted options. Of course, with no good player serious at learning Rocket, the other serious players didn't get experience playing good Rockets.

So America shot itself in the foot. When a good Rocket showed up, they didn't have the knowledge to deal with it at the time. Given time, they'd either figure out how to overcome it or to bring it into their play styles, but the point is why they didn't encounter it before the tournament.

Anonymous said...

Thinking about it, Kusoru's actually bringing a lot to the table by playing underused characters, and making for a better variety of fights.

However the guy who wrote this is a complete twat and needs to be punched in the face. What a weeaboo dickrider.

Anonymous said...

ha ha ha ha, angry video game virgins raging. Hilarious.

Anonymous said...

This blog sucks bahdd..,,,

William Greeson said...

Wow, is this ever troll city in here. Everyone is getting at everyone else, if your not trolling the OP by saying he's a Weeaboo and whatnot your trolling the people who took an article explaining a culture clash that just occurred too seriously due to some rather blatant text.

First point I felt needed to be mentioned, everyone at FR was pretty excited about Kusoru's presence. Although you could see the frustration of some of the players getting beat by an obvious strategy(a.k.a. Fire kick into Log Trap cross-over shenanigans are done multiple times to multiple players, and it just proved a little hard to ride around), they were happy to shake hands and be happy for the guy. PR balrog got nearly shoved out of his chair at the culminating match, and he was HAPPY to get up and shake the guys hand. He made a point to wait until his friends cheering died down to do it.

Players like Combofiend, Yipes, and PR Rog(just mentioning a few) obviously love this game, and push hard to be better at it. It excites such players to encounter new tech from unseen characters. That is why Yipes and Combofiend use Dr. Strange pretty awesome now. I would not be shocked if we see some more RR tech from what Kusoru dished out. He is an eye openning player, playing to odd strategies, avoiding aggressive pushes, and staying defensive.

It's an absolute fact that such overlooked characters can clean up in the tournament scene, but this is true across the board. I've watched some freaky Dan players get pretty far along in tournaments just because he's so goofy that people didn't expect him to blow up at them. I've seen Zappa win a local tournament because all the tournament GG players were busy practicing their Ky game.

Second point: I admire people who can take unproven characters and make them tournament grade. Those characters have the natural advantage of doing the unexpected, and the unexpected leads to wins, sometimes big majors. Kusoru is good enough to occasionally do that, and that is WHY he's a Kusoge God. He enjoys finding the nooks and crannies of the games he plays and showing off things he's discovered, and I love him for it. On the other hand I think it's pretty shitty to tauntingly throw that in the face of players who possibly love the game just as much. Do you think some top players don't occasionally get good with crappy characters? You don't think that one of the well knowns I brought up before doesn't play with Phoenix Wright in their spare time? There is a big difference between playing, and discovering, and you can play for a long time and not discover that cohesion. Kusoru sees such cohesion more naturally, and this is part of why he's so awesome.

Third point. I think everyone gets this is a game yes? no rabid foaming needs to happen here, yes?