StarSlay3r's Gaming Blog

Just me writing about my love of gaming and gaming related experiences.

Well I had fun in Mexico but I'm glad to be back home. Competing in Mexico was an all new experience that really made me appreciate how good we have it here in the U.S. You thought games were expensive here? You complain about having to pay $300 for an Xbox but what if you had to pay over $550 for the system and $100 for each game? That's right... in Mexico gaming is probably one of the most expensive professions you can have. With technology being outrageously overpriced the gamers in Mexico take every gaming tournament VERY seriously because they have some serious money to make up for all of the money they've invested into pursuing gaming as a career. Just wanted to touch base on this probably unknown fact and say that I appreciate the dedication of Mexico's players and highly respect all of them. And now... for details on my trip!

Sept 11th 8:30 am Los Angeles, CA LAX Airport

I'm at the airport. It's sooo early! Time to leave for mexico. I thought I'd be able to sleep on the flight but I found out I had to fill out a bunch of paperwork explaining my purpose to the country and such. This was my first time flying out of the country so I was completely oblivious to how everything worked. I was pretty happy I decided not to bring my xbox at this point in time since I saw how much of a hassle it was getting electronic devices on the flight.

12:00 noon Jalisco, Guadalajara, Guadalajara Airport

I push the button and it turns green *phew* I can pass into Mexico! I walk through the long walkway filled with people holding signs for their loved ones. Somehow I pass the guy holding the WCG sign without knowing it and was heading for the doors to outside when all of a sudden I hear "CIJI!!!" I look around and see none other than WCG Ultimate Gamer's Jamal "Zophar321" Nickens! He told me that he was there to fill in for Robert "Prod1gy X" Paz for Halo3. I had no idea he was coming so this was a pleasant surprise. Jamal is definitely one of the most fun of the group to hang out with. I noticed that there was extra baggage next to Jamal... Mark "applesauce" Smith had arrived with Jamal but was away at the moment. I checked in with the man in charge, Laurent, and we awaited Geoff "iNcoNtrol" Robinson. I greeted Geoff with a huge hug and was extremely happy that I was with my friends again. TEAM USA! we said... this is it! We left for our hotel and talked about the gaming community and what we've been up to since the show.

Later that night we stopped by the venue to check out the setup and check in on the progress of the Mexican country finals. We were all pretty impressed with Mexico's skilled players and all admitted that we probably underestimated our competition. A lot of people came up to us (the ultimate gamers) and asked where we're from. "USA" we respond, and the guys talk about which game they are there to play. This next part... it happened literally 6 or 7 times... The person then turns to me and says "...and you're here to cheer them on?". I chuckle and point to my badge... "I'm here to compete in Guitar Hero" to which almost all of them responded "Oh my gosh I'm so sorry... I mean... I didn't mean that like... " they then stumbled on their words. "It's ok" I responded. The USA Team leader jokes around and says "It's cuz you're a girl (lol)". "I've never seen a female competitor at WCG before is all." they say. I was amazed how many times they said this. I'm hoping that in the future there are more females at these events, and not just to watch. This shouldn't be unusual to people...

Geoff, Jamal and I take some time to do some Ultimate Gamer Rock Band 2. We choose Paramore's song "That's What You Get" since that was a song that Swoozie kind of helped to make our Ultimate Gamer official Rock Band 2 song on the show. :D We missed ya Swoozie! That song was dedicated to you!

We go back to the hotel after grabbing some food and I immediately work out an agreement to practice Guitar Hero with the Canadian GH player Dan. Luckily Mark brought his Xbox and I had my guitar and the Dan just happened to have a copy of GH: World Tour even though he had no xbox with him. (It's crazy how that worked out!) We played together and he told me which songs he thought would be in the competition. After practicing for a while I had beaten him on some songs but he still always beat me on points for nearly every song. This guy was good... I looked at it as HE was going to be the guy to beat here in Mexico.

Sept 12th Guadalajara, Guadalajara Convention Center

We arrive at the convention center and prepare for the flag ceremony practice run. Jamal had requested to be the flag carrier the day before so he was carrying the US flag. 13 countries chose the best players to represent their countries for each game. Mexico had the major upper hand in the competition since each country was allowed to have up to 3 people representing their country for each game but most countries couldn't afford to fly that many players out, Mexico was the only country to have multiple people representing their country for each game. It was at this point we realized our Virtua Fighter 5 player never showed up so we had no representation in that game. We played some games while we waited for the opening ceremony to begin.

Once the opening ceremony was finished we all ran to our perspective games to prepare to compete. I was upset to find that the Guitar Hero World Tour setup was on a huge tv and not just that... they had a sound system hooked up to it. Why is this an issue you ask? Well Guitar Hero is a game based on timing. With huge LCD, Plasma, etc tv's there is some video lag. When you add a 5 speaker sound system to the mix and have no audio coming out of the tv you then add the element of audio lag. We attempted to calibrate the tv the best possible and even fixed the xbox settings and in game settings to make up for the fact that it was not even set to HDTV when we arrived. No matter what we did there was no fixing the lag... this tournament would end up being determined by who can adjust to the lag best. Mexico, again, had the upper hand since they had been practicing on this setup for the past couple days.

Around 2pm I did an interview with a news station from Brazil called GlobalTV about my style and gaming/ competing. I have to find that interview and post it on here for you guys to check out! It was short, but they interviewed a lot of competitors so I'm curious to learn more about them and their thoughts on the event.

As the day goes on our Halo team loses. Unfortunately they do not move onto day 2, but they ended up placing 5th. I am not adjusting to the lag well, and the matches are somewhat close, but I was not performing anything close to how I was playing the night before in the hotel room when practicing with the Canadian Guitar Hero player. After some matches I was done for the day and had to wait for Sunday for the rest of my matches, so I moved over to the Rock Band area to practice for the tournament they were doing. At this point our Fifa player was out of the competition and Geoff was struggling not to be eliminated.

As the event came to an end StarCraft matches were still going on. Geoff finally won a match which gave him a chance for a tiebreaker match. He won his first match, lost the second then won the third. One more time Geoff! We sat by his side all night as he fought... then he finally did it. Geoff moved onto top 3 and moves on to finals the next day! YAY!

Sept 13th 10:00pm Guadalajara, Dubai Night Club

WCG set up a VIP party for the players at Dubai. This club was AMAZING! I'm not a big party person but I went because I figured this was a once in a lifetime opportunity to bond with some amazing gamers and it was really the ONLY time that Geoff, Mark, Jamal and I would would have hang out together outside of the tv show. (with the only exception being that I hung out with Jamal a little bit at E3) Team USA, Team Canada and Team Mexico along with some of Team Brazil showed up to the event and we all got to know each other and learned more about how gaming is in other countries. We had a ton of fun dancing and chatting it up in the VIP area and then headed back to the hotel at about 3am.

10:00am Guadalajara, Guadalajara Convention Center

Well it's the day of finals. Guitar Hero is wrapping up. I have had enough of the lag... it's even worse today not to mention literally 10feet away from our area are two HUGE speakers blaring the WCG theme song. I love that song and all... but after listening to it for 4 hours straight I had grown tired of it. They had to turn the sound up for the game so loud that it blew out the speakers making it hard to hear the songs and making it even worse to play on. I'm done with World Tour so I run over to the Rock Band 2 area and sign ups were closed for the tournament. I ask the people running the tournament if they can squeeze me in. I had come late due to the GH tournament but they let me enter so I was last to go and wouldn't have a chance to practice any more. Many of the GH players that were competing in World Tour entered along with Mexico's top GH players from the Mexican national finals from the first day so I had some tough competition. Luckily when I stopped playing World Tour earlier this year I had grown super fond of and played a LOT of RB2.

The tournament was set up by the organizers picking the song and the players each had to do their best on the song to score the most points possible. This style of competition is usually called SCORE ATTACK. I was super nervous because Mexico was currently in the lead with the most points. The final song: Testament "Souls of Black". I'm watching people fail at the solo thinking to myself... "oh gosh please just make it through the solo without needing overdrive!" The lag on the tv's is minimal so I'm ok. I get 93% on the solo and I'm missing a couple hammer ons here and there because I'm still used to the wider note hit window of GH but I start fixing my mistakes pretty fast. I'm nearing the end of the song and notice I'm still about 13k below the highest scorers points... I save up overdrive hoping for just one more to fill it up and deploy on the final set of double notes to surpass the highest score by near 20k and the crowd went wild. It was awesome to have the crowd cheer for me once I won. I got a lot of handshakes and "congrats" after I collected my prizes. :D


The competitions are over. In the end USA had not performed as well as we had hoped. The only person placing top 3 was Geoff who pulled out an amazing win after a bad losing streak in the beginning. We watched a video which showed the past 2 days of competition at the Pan American Championships and I was excited to see that they showed me in the video for Guitar Hero about 1 min 50 sec in. (see below) The medals were awarded and we showered Geoff with praise for his great accomplishment.

Team USA results:
Halo 3- Mark/Jamal 5th
Guitar Hero World Tour- Ciji 7th
Virtua Fighter 5- Unknown No show
Fifa- Unknown Unknown
StarCraft- Geoff 2nd

Side tourney:
Rock Band 2- Ciji 1st

After everyone collected their checks and the event was closing up I got SWAMPED for photos. From magazines like UrBeat to the other competitors. I had never experienced something quite to this extent before. In Mexico I was treated with so much respect and got a lot of praise for what I'm accomplishing and hoping to accomplish in the gaming industry. I did an interview with Joseph from GAME ON! a Costa Rican company that sells games/ accessories and such but also runs events and keeps the gamers up to date on events and gaming news. I had a great time talking to him about the event, what I'm hoping to accomplish in the gaming community and even was asked to come out to Costa Rica to go to one of their events! It was a great end to the event and I was a bit bummed that I had to leave the next day.

After all the photo ops were done and the interview was completed the USA crew headed back to the hotel. We took some time to bond again by playing some Street Fighter 4 in the hotel lobby since we decided to pull an all niter before catching the shuttle early in the morning to the airport. I was really happy I got to spend that time in Mexico with everyone... it was truly a learning experience for me and it was also an amazing opportunity for me to meet some GREAT competitors and amazing people.

Thank you WCG for making this happen! But I do have one thing to say... Samsung... please bring some CRTs to the US National Finals... I promise you the finalists will love you FOREVER if you do! Thanks again!

Well guys, I had a meeting with Coffin Case today and we're going to start kicking promotions into high gear! First step, we want you guys to spread the word about Coffin Case on twitter! What's the reward? Well I'm going to track all of you guys who tweet about Coffin Case (don't forget to @reply me so I know who you are!) and I'm going to pick one of you at random to give one of these awesome Guitar Hero Coffin Case bags to and someone will also get a Coffin Case shirt! 2 winners this week and more to come! Basically I want to see how many people we can get to follow Coffin Case in just 3 days! So come on... a simple @CoffinCase and a link to can win you a FREE Coffin Case shirt or bag... what more can you ask for? :D

Think of this like a raffle, you can get more than one chance at this if you tweet every day through Saturday but you get only one point per day (max 4 points total) so if you remember to tweet every day about Coffin Case telling your friends to follow them as well is going to increase your chance of winning! Note: The Coffin Case shirt is a size small (just letting you know in advance) The Coffin Case bag fits both Guitar Hero and Rock Band Guitars.

Coffin Case Guitar Controller Bag
The Coffin Case gig bag for Rock Band and Guitar Hero guitars. It features a heavy nylon exterior with a red satin interior. Also featured is the licensed images of KISS, Ozzy, Motley Crue, and The Adicts.
Ask for these at your local music store.

I will also be giving away a bag at each of my upcoming events to the person who does the best against me in a Guitar Hero: Metallica challenge so stay tuned for more details on that!

As you guys may or may not have known, I've been competitively gaming for about 10 years now. In the past ten years I've watched the gaming industry get larger and larger and watched the rise and fall of many gaming leagues and have noticed many things, some that are good and some that are bad. I've decided to write a blog dedicated to bringing some issues to your attention and write about how things could be improved.

Internet Hate:

For the past 10 years there's always been trash talk... I don't think that's anything new. It seems like more and more however, as the gaming industry gets larger and professional gaming and gamers get more attention the spotlight becomes a target and the jealousy of other gamers often turns into hate. 10 years ago trash talk was pretty limited to some online forums or chat rooms/ lobbies on servers for particular games. Now the fact that pro gamers are so easily accessible through youtube, myspace, blog sites like this, xbox live, email, aim and other online gaming communities it makes it much easier for people to express their disliking anonymously online to a bigger crowd. Unfortunately it's things like this that can ruin peoples reputation since rumors and hearsay are repeated as truth and people assume "if I read it online it MUST be true" rather then talk to the person themselves.

I've asked many pro gamers how they deal with the internet hate and most say the same thing. "I just ignore it. They're usually some 13/14 year old kid ranting because they can hide behind the computer screen." While this is mostly true, it's evolved into much more then that now when elitists that are on teams will create blogs dedicating to their disliking for players or will chat in irc or forums about their disliking of a player potentially ruining their reputation. In instances like this it all comes down to who has the most fans as to who will be the good guy and who will be the bad guy in these situations. (Just look at Mike Watson vs gootecks in the SF4 community for example)

Unfortunatelydue to more and more companies realizing how big the gaming industry is, more and more gamers are gaining fame and are therefore gaining haters. When gamers are featured on Dr.Pepper bottles, in commercials and on TV shows, the jealousy comes out and the hate rages on. It's things like this that are driving up and coming pro gamers away from gaming communities and promoting more underground environments since players feel more safe competing in those situations.


Before there didn't use to be so many teams, and the teams that were around were more underground with a small few that stood out and gained attention due to sponsorship. Now with sponsors helping out teams big AND small more and more teams exist such as the PMS Clan, VvV, MoB, and all of the CGS teams that are all pretty much done for now. While there were some teams that were considered more "elite" than others due to the number of professional gamers and top place players they had on the team, it always seemed as though the members on the teams would have the mentality that they are better than other teams. Unfortunately not every gamer can be a paid team member as most teams like the PMS/H2O clans have HUNDREDS of members and only up to about 5 sponsors covering just a few people to go to events. The fact that clans like PMS make promises to send team members to events and also have rules that you have to let other teams belittle you and not say anything is something that really turned me off to the idea of joining a team.

Giving gamers a chance:

This kind of relates to the teams subject... but something I've noticed is that more and more now gamers that are called "the best" at a particular game seem to be under the most pressure to stay on top. While gamers like Fatal1ty find this feat to be easy, some gamers are dealing with criticism if they ever lose a match for any reason. I have witnessed the #2 player in the nation go 0-2 in a match before due to equipment failure and no one says squat about that, but yet if the player that does something like this is one that's in a spotlight, then all of a sudden if they lose a match they've lost their game and they are torn apart by the community, and no, not by 14 year olds, but other pro gamers.

It's a shame to see that this is how pro gamers are treating other pro gamers right now. I remember watching pro gamer Stermy go from being one of the bottom Fifa players (yeah he specialized in FPS games and is one of the top in that genre) to being given a chance by Kat to turn his game around and then became of the top Fifa players in the nation and a part of the 2nd place team in the World. It's things like this that can help the gaming community. Just because a gamer specializes in one genre doesn't mean that they don't have talent elseware, and if gaming communities like CGS should arise in the future I think they'll keep finding the nations best players by giving them a chance to prove that dedication and hard work can lead to a player accomplishing anything they set their mind to.

Ensuring the integrity of E-sports:

I've noticed a couple people in the community that claim they are doing things a certain way for the "betterment of e-sports" but I wonder if they even know what the heck they're talking about. I am all for protecting the integrity of e-sports... but I've noticed that top players are calling out the players asking referees and people running tournaments to modify brackets to do match ups that would appeal to the crowd or boost someones ego. I'm sorry, but last time I checked randomized brackets are how things are done and asking to manipulate brackets for ones own benefit doesn't seem like keeping the integrity of a game or e-sports in general. There were instances of this that happened at Devastation for multiple games and this caused a huge dilemna that was not necessary especially with SF4.

Esports in general:

While I see gamers talking about how they care about helping e-sports and want to contribute, the only person I've really seen doing anything that matters is Fatal1ty. He's started a gaming school where people can come from all over the nation to his Fatality "camp" and learn how to play FPS games professional as well as giving tips on how to be a successful gamer. While I have not talked to anyone who has attended these classes personally I think the idea is a great one that will encourage gamers to pursue their goals to go pro in a safe environment where there are no negative thoughts affecting the player.


Back when I played Quake 1 I remember there were always hackers that would somehow modify their character to do things like shoot rockets out of their ass. If you were ever wondering why someone was just annihilating the competition and it WASN'T Fatal1ty, it was usually some hacker praying on innocent victims that just wanted to up their game or have fun playing.

Now thanks to Microsoft Xbox and other companies there are programs in place to help prevent cheating. Mods are often detected and prevented from being used or accounts suspended to prevent that player from playing online against other players. The new thing to come up is that companies are taking pride in developing products with software that is undetectable by systems and that promote cheating. One of these companies is Evil Controllers. Here's their quote

"Throughout the video game history, there has always been one constant error, HUMANS. Evil Controller LLC develops controllers that finally eliminate the human error in video games. These controllers help you be the best video gamer possible. From a hand gun that shoots like a machine gun or an automatic reload in Gears of War, Evil can provide you with the controller that best fits these video games.Some people believe that these controllers take the spirit away from these games. At Evil we think that increases the fun and excitement in these games. Once you pick up a rapid fire controller for Call of Duty 4, you will NEVER be able to play the game in its normal speed. We are constantly pushing the gaming limits; imagine perfect swings in Tiger Woods or a dual rapid fire in Call of Duty. The lists go on and on from controllers that are specified for Lefties and n awesome Guitar Hero mod. As the industry evolves we are determined to evolve just as fast. "

So basically... do you suck at shooting in COD or Halo 3? Do you want to make it so that all you need to do is get your aim right and you can kill someone with a pistol? Seriously, rapid fire was banned for a reason... do we really want to see these controllers showing up in MLG tournaments? Evil Controllers isn't taking away human error, they're taking away talent so that anyone that can aim at a guy can kill them with one push of a trigger button. Reading further they are talking about some "awesome guitar hero mod" which is probably one of the things I'm most strongly against. I've seen computer programs that are combined with a small unit that can fit discretely inside of a guitar hero guitar to automatically hit all of the notes in a song for the player. What the hell is the point of this? Can we not PLAY games anymore? It's sad that big name gamers are jumping on board to promote a company that prides itself on cheating.

What do I want to see happening?:

Basically I want to see less of these random teams that are all over the place making promises to help gamers go pro but not delivering and more teams that are serious about competing and want teammates that are both talented at their game but also personable. We don't need anymore arrogant elitists in the industry... really, there are plenty to go around. Having teams promotes more companies to team up and sponsor them therefore increasing money flow to the gaming industry.

I would like to see more events like WCG, WSVG, CPL, and such. These leagues and events help to grow the gaming industry and increase money flow into the industry as well as increase the number of people involved of gaming by giving the no name players a chance to show what they've got and be picked up by teams.

WWFOG disappear and ECA gaining more attention. Lets not give gamers any MORE false hopes or make promises that will be broken. If you want to help the gaming community join ECA and make your voice heard.

I recently talked to a kid that was writing a paper on adding a "pro gaming class" to high schools and collages. Basically something along the lines of Fatal1ty's boot camp but more accessible and something that would be a part of the regular persons schedule in school. This is probably one of the best ideas I've ever heard and something I hope will be seriously considered in the near future. By making pro gaming a part of everyone's daily schedule it will become more common and acceptable and will be considered as a "normal job" one day. They take this kind of thing seriously in Korea, why can't they do it here in America?

*I am open to hear what you guys have to say. Is there something I missed? Something that you would like to add? You disagree on something? Post a comment. :D Thanks!

Well I get a ton of "WHO DO YOU USE?" questions for all the games I play so I thought I'd break it down for you. (Still adding characters as the day goes on)

Noel Vermillion

Guitar Hero Series:
Judy Nails (or custom character "Star")

Soul Calibur 2:
Kilik (in SC4 I use a custom female that has Kilik's moves)

TEKKEN 5 & 6:
Christie Montero


Virtua Fighter 5:
Pai Chan

Burnout Revenge:
Nixon Special

Well guys, it's been a while since I've done game reviews. As some of you know I used to be a game reviewer for and then I worked for GamePlay HD doing game reviews as well. I was the rhythm game specialist for both companies and now I'm back writing game reviews but going solo this time. :D

I received an email asking to review a new game that's coming out this Thursday. The game: Suguri. It's a game straight from Tokyo, Japan. It's hard for me to really say much about the game right now since all that I've read is in Japanese text and little gameplay.

From what I gather this has both single player and multiplayer abilities. Single player mode looks like it functions kind of like BlazBlue as far as health/barrier are concerned but you fly through levels able to move full screen as if you are a ship destroying other ships/ characters.

The Multiplayer function looks almost exactly like BlazBlue as far as health meter/ barrier/ heat goes but with the exception of having the ability to move around the entire screen in any direction since you are flying in the sky and the fact that you, again, are more like a ship that can spew out lasers, missiles, bombs, etc. Some matches I've seen are VERY confusing and I noticed your counter is determined by health damage not combos like other games. This game is VERY fast passed. I hope it's easy to learn!

I'll be attending the Rockin Android "Suguri" release party this Thursday to see the game first hand and give it a review. I will also be video taping and taking pics at the event to post. :D I'm pretty excited to see how this game works first hand! Stay tuned for more info!

Oh my gosh. So you guys have been noticing that basically since Mike bought me BlazBlue it hasn't really come out of my xbox right? Well I'm totally OBSESSING over this game. After being told "BlazBlue is stupid, don't waste your time or money" and "Street Fighter is WAY better don't get BlazBlue" and so on I decided I'd just get it anyways. After a few days of putting it off Mike came over and said "I have a surprise for you!" He showed me what it was... and it was BlazBlue for the 360. Pronounced "BLAZE BLUE" this game is a 2D Anime style fighting game with a GREAT story line, a combo based fighting system and great characters... the game is absolutely beautiful to look at and amazing and fun to play.
I really suck at describing this game... nothing I can say will do it justice so I'll just include a video to show you a bit of the game so you can see what I'm talking about before I start my rant on the game and why you should be playing it.

First video: The characters of BlazBlue

I play as NOEL. Here's a vid showing why I love to use her!

Ok now that you've seen a bit of the game now I'll start my rant of why I love this game. Here's some of the many great features.

- If you love anime you'll love this! Anime style characters and storyline FTW!

- If you like Street Fighter you'll love that this is another 2D game. No sidestepping here!

- If you are a combo whore you'll love this game... While combos aren't necessary they definitely are a big factor in this game

- Player matches are set up like a virtual arcade. You can do a private match with a friend or join a room in progress and watch matches while waiting your turn in a virtual line... wait your turn to face the ranking champion... can you stop their win streak by learning from others mistakes?

- RUB IT IN! Yeah once you beat someone you get a few extra seconds to unleash hell on their dead ass... I mean come on... I got an achievement for doing a 20 hit combo after the guy was dead... they encourage it, it's not mean!

- Ranked matches can be sorted to local area or all areas making it so that if you put "LOCAL" you have a higher chance to play against your friends or that guy that whooped your ass at the arcade the other day. Can you say revenge?

- User friendly buttons. There's only 4, A, B, C, and D. The moves are all pretty basic and go from Forward A to Fireball motions and A, B, C etc. The Distortion Drive moves are basically two Street Fighter Fireball motions and the D button for many characters. No move is incredibly hard... but using the right combination is Key!

- BARRIERS! YES! Not only can you block by holding back, but you have a Barrier to help protect you in the air and from devastating combos, although be careful.... it DOES run out! The best thing about the barrier is that it can be Burst so if you're getting beat down you can hit all 4 buttons, do a barrier burst and push your opponent to the other side of the screen giving you time to strategize and make a comeback.

- All ranked and player matches have the option to save the match after. This helps to learn from your mistakes, gives you an idea of how the top players use their character (since their top matches are automatically saved and viewable from the leaderboards) and it makes for better quality uploads to youtube so you don't hear all the button mashing and screaming "JUST DIE ALREADY!" in the background. :D

- Amazing Distortion Drive Finishes. Basically these moves are much like Ultras in SF4. Some characters DD finishes are much like Zangiefs and can take off over 2/5's of your opponents life, leveling the playing field or potentially saving your ass from death. Basically you use it if it's the 3rd round and your opponent has less than 20% health to assure your victory. They look AMAZING! Here's some vids of Astral Heat Finishes.

Well... I think I've pled my case enough. Basically in just a few days of having the game I've been so addicted I've played over 50 matches and am a level 17 with over 500k points. Think you can take me? Come bring it! You can find me online every night leveling up my Noel and learning how all the characters work. If you want a player match I will do first to 5 or first to 10 matches. :D I may be a noob to this game... but I am no scrub! :D I am willing to help anyone who wants to learn the Noel match up vs your character. I use her pretty well and will give you tips on how to beat her if you ask nicely. :D And YES, if I beat you badly and you want to take it out on me in Street Fighter 4 then I will play a few matches if it makes you feel better. :D

As you read in my blog a while back I ended LOSF's Street Fighter 4 tournament in 4th place.I made quite a few crucial mistakes that left me open for hits from her Bison making me lose on rounds when I was far ahead at first.

This was my second Street Fighter tournament ever, and while I normally wait 1 year after playing a game to enter any tournaments for the game I decided to start competing after only a couple months of play time.

As most of you know I'm new to Street Fighter in general so Street Fighter 4 is my first SF game and I'm trying hard to learn this game. There's a lot of aspects to this game I haven't even touched base on yet but I'm still happy with my performance in LOSF overall. I'm still happy with this match since Stacy is a long time Street Fighter player and is at the arcade practicing every day and she used Bison which is one of the characters I've been having problems with lately since no one really uses that character so I don't get to practice the match up much.

I'm not going to youtube anymore to read messages on this video since I now have access to the video through my blog, so any comments pertaining to tips to help me with this match up should be sent to @StarSlay3rGames on twitter. Thank you for those who sent me tips on helping with this match as well as general Street Fighter tips... I appreciate the help.

Well, as you all read... I officially retired from Guitar Hero for Street Fighter. Well... can I take it back? lol Guess I'm coming OUT of retirement. Yeah I know that was fast. I'm waiting for all of you to go "I knew it! I knew you couldn't give it up!" And also, some smart ass comments about how I must be picking it up cuz I suck at Street Fighter or something.

Well, the reason why I'm picking it back up is this. And... it's possibly only temporary. Well first why I wanted to quit...I didn't want to compete this year on Guitar Hero because that's all people seem to think I can do. I wanted to show I have talent in other genres. I also wanted to spend time on SF4 and see how well I do with it. Now... why I changed my mind... Recently I got a text from inControl (WCG Ultimate gamer competitor and WCG Starcraft champ) asking if I was going to the World Cyber Games US Invitational. I told him I got an invite but was going to Michigan that weekend. (which the trip to Mi got rescheduled to the week after now) Well after talking to him a bit about how I quit Guitar Hero and all that he was like "you GOTTA GO!" yeah well I thought about it and I want to go...

I basically have a few shots left to qualify for a spot for WCG team USA and I am going to try. I will also attend the WCG US Invitationals if I get sponsorship help. (crossing fingers) and have already been confirmed to go compete in Mexico next month. I'm not really able to invest the time into researching Star Paths so I'm going to just have to see how far I can make it with just pure raw skill and hope I mess up less than the other players. heh

I'll keep my account updated with all of my upcoming events. Since the site is down for a bit I'll have viewable through

So yeah, you guys will see me at 2 more Guitar Hero tournaments this year... we'll see about more MAYBE in the future. :D

Gootecks is not and has NEVER trained me... he basically didn't like the fact I sought help from other people and has since told people to stop helping me so I am not associating myself with him anymore.

I AM being trained by Combo Jack and Mike Ross... they are where I get the strength to keep playing... I owe them both A LOT. Thank you guys for being so awesome... you are TRUE gamers with TRUE skill and a passion for this game. It's nice to get helped by someone who truly loves the game and isn't just looking to get popular off it. :D

I'll keep everyone updated on how my progress goes with these two. They've already been playing matches with me online and teaching me what they know one step at a time and I'm just taking it all in and doing Championship mode online as much as possible. I want to play online ranked matches to get those damn achievements (win 50 win 100 etc) but I want to do well in Championship mode as well and think that's more important. :D

I've only played about 15 championship matches online so far and am a G3-C BLAH! I don't remember how many GP points exactly right now but have about1200 cp points (for now until my next match lol) But I'm beating people with over 1000+ GP which I think is saying a lot. I also am noticing these people have 100+ to 500+ Wins in their achievements. I'm trying not to base anything off the achievements however because you can easily do player matches with a friend to get the 100 wins or whatever. :p LAME! I want all my wins to be legit when I get those achievements!

Well yeah I'm practicing a lot. My first Street Fighter IV tournament is at SCG's Ironman of Gaming although I will be attending other gaming events like EVO to support Justin Wong, Mike Ross, Combo Jack and others. :D

I was very excited when I checked my inbox today. I saw a message from a DM at Starlight. I hope they're ok with me posting this... I was (still am) Very excited about the email and wanted to share it. I'm glad that they appreciate my help and I hope that I can help them in a much bigger way in the future. If you haven't already heard about what I'm currently up to with starlight please read my previous blog. Thank you!

Dear Ciji,

I wanted to take some time to introduce myself to you as I am new at Starlight Children’s Foundation. I was looking over all of our wonderful FirstGiving volunteer fundraisers and am simply astonished that so many wonderful people like you have volunteered to help!

I see that you started your page on 4/28/2009 and have set an ambitious goal of $5,000! AND you have already raised an impressive amount of donations! And may I just say that your page is fantastic. I love how you speak about Starlight. Your passion for the project really comes through; it is inspiring even for those of us who work here!

Thank you for volunteering for an organization as worthwhile as Starlight Children’s Foundation, your work truly makes an indelible impact on the lives of seriously ill children and their families.

Looking forward to working with you in the future…..

As you all know I've been talking about how Starlight is my favorite charity... well, I'm trying to help them out right now and I need your help! My goal is to raise $5,000 for the Starlight Childrens foundation to help ensure that they can keep providing the children with things like "fun centers" and to help more children's wishes to come true!

Please, read about the foundation I'm supporting and, if you can, donate to this great cause. If you can't donate please help spread the word about this page to your friends/family. Together we can help these children get their wishes and ensure that things like the fun centers remain readily available for the kids in their time of need!

About Starlight: When a child or teenager has a serious medical condition, everyone in the family is affected. For nearly 25 years, Starlight Starbright Children’s Foundation has dedicated itself to helping seriously ill children and their families cope with their pain, fear and isolation through entertainment, education and family activities. Starlight’s programs have been proven to distract children from their pain, help them better understand and manage their illnesses, and connect families facing similar challenges so that no one feels alone. Through a network of more than 30 offices, Starlight provides ongoing support to children, parents and siblings in all U.S. states and Canadian provinces with an array of outpatient, hospital-based and Web offerings. Programs are also delivered internationally through affiliates in Australia, Japan and the United Kingdom.

Why am I asking the gaming community to help Starlight? Because gaming is one of the many ways that we can help distract these children from their pain. Games distract you when you're in a bad mood or just need to relax and have fun right? Well help these kids experience that too! Companies like Nintendo and Harmonix have already teamed up in an effort to help this great cause by donating.

Starlight Starbright Children's Foundation partnered with Nintendo of America more than 15 years ago to create Fun Center mobile entertainment units. Including a flat-screen TV, video game console and DVD player, each Fun Center can be rolled right up to the side of young patient's beds or anywhere in a hospital setting. For children who may be anticipating surgery, enduring long outpatient treatments, waiting in the emergency room, or fighting loneliness after visiting hours have ended, Fun Centers provide a welcome respite.

Harmonix and MTV games announced that they would be donating a $50,000 gift to Starlight Children's Foundation. Paul DeGooyer, Senior Vice President of Electronic Games and Music for MTV Networks Music & Logo Group, added: “We’re very excited to be part of a program enabling Starlight kids and their families to rock out a bit through our placement of games in hospitals and at family events, facilitating once-in-a lifetime getaways, and donations. It truly is a privilege to help Starlight and its mission.”

GAMERS UNITE! Together we can reach the $5,000 goal I've set and then some! Much love! Thank you all for your continued support! <3

To donate please go to: you can also go to to view more information about the group. Thank you and please help spread the word!

Ciji "StarSlay3r" Thornton

Well, money is tight this year since I haven't competed in Guitar Hero for a while. :p This year I'm trying to attend the Iron Man of Gaming amongst many events. Screw attack just posted a video of their event so I figured I'd show you all what exactly the Iron Man of Gaming Is.

If you haven't already learned this about me... I AM an all around gamer. While I excel and am known for Guitar Hero I have always and will always play all different types of games both for fun and for competition.

If you've seen me on Xbox live playing Dig Dug and on youtube watching Mega Man runs... now you know why! haha Yes this is the REAL test to find the Ultimate Gamer! I hope to see you all at the Iron Man of Gaming this year! I'm going to keep on busting my ass on SFIV and keep trying to attend events that will enable me to show off my other gaming skills and see if I can keep up with the big dogs like Jamal from our show who placed 3rd overall at Iron Man last year!

I'm extremely excited with everything that's been happening lately. After a big let down from finding out gootecks isn't really that motivated to help me do well anymore (he's too busy doing his own things it's ok) I have a lot of support from the nations top players keeping me motivated to keep going.

I noticed that more and more lately because of this tv show people are coming from all over the place challenging me. On my youtube I get comments "I could take you!" and all this. The only game I really played competitively lately was Guitar Hero. DDR I play for fun so... yeah if you can get AAA on Expert... that's awesome! I play once a week or so! haha I mean really, you guys are taking the fun out of the game. WCG Ultimate Gamer is just a tv show... and while I'm a competitive person I play 90% of the games that I do FOR FUN, but I just happen to be at a high level for them.

Moving on... The SRK guys seem to be my biggest haters. While I regret posting my original message to them (thinking they'd welcome me) it seems as though they ALL focus on things that I say and turn them around to make it out like I'm just "another girl looking for attention" when in fact I'm just "another player looking for help and guidance from the more advanced players". Luckily the people that matter (the people who actually play SFIV and WIN) have been keeping in touch with me offering their help, so it's not an entire loss.

Encouraging words:

When I first met Mike Ross at Arcade Infinity: "Are you that Star girl? I read about your progress, you go girl! Ignore the SRK guys, you go for it, you make top 8... you do what you gotta do!" Also "I'm glad we got to link up too because I really want you to excel in SFIV :)" Thanks for the support Mike... I'm amazed at your talent and I'll continue to watch and support you! You rock!

Justin Wong after I told him I'm trying to get good at Street Fighter IV and saying he should stop by AI if he's in LA: "I been to arcade infinity before. haha sf4 is the best game ever. maybe ill show u a thing or two online if nething if you like " Thanks for offering me some help Justin! You're definitely someone I'd LOVE to get a few tips from!!!

Jack aka Jack Daniels: "Once I train with you and combine everything I know with the knowledge of the other 2 top Sagat players you will be one sick ass Sagat player. You will be the 4th Sagat player of SoCal!" After seeing Jack play and dominate at AI I know that he can help me with my character!

Many of the players at Arcade Infinity are also saying things along the lines of "We want to help you be great at this game... we can see you're serious about this and it's awesome!"

From ALLDAY: "Hey Ciji. My friends and I run the 3rd largest Fighting game Tourney in the US. Lets get you trained up so you can kick some ass. Your friends list if full as is mine, so I've deleted a space for you. We are serious here about helping you become the first world class female SF player."

:D Thanks to all the friends who are helping. I know I need all the help I can get... but I'm going to keep practicing, keep training, and keep on attending events like last nights tournament to see how you guys do it!

Last night, by the way... WAS AMAZING! By last night I mean the Street Fighter IV tournament at Nucleus (above) in Alhambra. I told Joel Gourdin (the host of WCG Ultimate Gamer) about the show and he stopped by and checked it out. Luckily I actually got a pic WITH him (right) this time instead OF him. hehe yay!

Going back to the actual event though...Oh my gosh! I twittered about it the whole time but I wish I could have written an article on it or something. Unfortunately Mike Ross got knocked out his 3rd match by Mike Watson. (left) Combofiend came in third, the well known Mike Watson came in 2nd and Kai came in 1st. The battle between Kai's El Fuerte and Mike Watson's Chun-Li (right) was amazing... back and forth back and forth 1-1 2-2 3-3 then FINALLY it was the final match... literally (---) health left and all it'd take is a two hit combo from either player. Mike Watson messed up and Kai took advantage of it winning... the crowd went WILD and the energy in Nucleus was just awesome. I really love the energy at Street Fighter Events... I just hope that one day I'll have people screaming like that for me. I know I have a long way to go... but I'm going to keep practicing my ass off to get there!

The artwork at Nucleus was also bad ass. There was a lot of amazing pieces that I wish I could have got my hands on but I unfortunately was in no situation to dish out that kind of cash. $$$ I need to save up that money for tournaments and events this year! There was also a cosplay contest of which I have no Idea who won going on. I think the best costume however was a girl who dressed up as C.Viper (left).. she had the most accurate outfit/accessories/overall look. There were WAAAAY too many Chun-Lis walking around. I think she is BY FAR the most cosplayed character of any video game. heh
It was good to see some guys getting into the Cosplay too! I saw most of the male characters from SFIV represented even El Fuerte! No cooking hat though, just the normal luchadore mask.

I started this blog writing about a certain SF4 forum online but have decided just to delete any reference to them since it's not really helping my situation at all. :-p Here's what's up with SF4.

I've been practicing hard since I started last week and have made significant progress. I still have YET to play with gootecks in person, we have only talked on the phone a bit and via aim and text. He's been too busy to really do much w/me yet. A few days ago I got some rounds in with the person who got 7th place at AI at the tourney last Saturday and I kept him on his toes. His quote: "Holy crap! You're good! I seriously think that if you put the time in you will be better then me." Yeah, now he took it easy on me at first as he underestimated me then he had to step his game up it went from us back and forth 2-1 then him 3-0. Once he unleashed hell on my ass I was happy if I could even get 1 round out of the best of 3. haha I also had a chance to practice with Joel Gourdin who has an 80% win rate for total online ranked matches... this guy is GOOD! I had a tough time with him on best of 5 matches and he definitely taught me some good techniques vs Dhalsim (his character of choice). With Dhalsim I lost every time... I could only keep up when he played other characters, even then I only got one round ... maybe 2 tops I think once? for best of 5.

Dhalsim is a character I've been having a hard time with... while he's easily hurt, it's hard to get close to him. I've learned the hard way about his damn knee (no jumping at him :p) slow fireballs and annoying ass Ultra. GRRRRRR! I've found that the EX-Tiger Knee Crush is def. my best friend when against most opponents, but I'm trying not to over use it so it doesn't get predictable. I just like how that particular move voids out a lot of other character's attacks.

Progress: I've played well over 120 or so matches now... not a whole lot for a week but I'll do more as the weeks go on. This saturday is yet another SF4 tourney at Nucleus in Alhambra. I will not be competing but will be attending, watching, and learning from the pros. I have found that watching videos and attending tournaments is another way of learning how people play with the characters, what moves are most commen, and what moves a player can use to counter attacks as well as learning which moves can enable a character to pass through fireballs or stop a characters Ultra from connecting. Today I basically got bitch smacked by Dhalism by Joel and it totally stopped my Ultra and I just stood there like WTF was THAT?!?! We both laughed about it and Joel said he had never seen anything like that before. Glitch or not, that was weird, and something new that I learned to watch out for.

I think gootecks' forum is probably my best bet for getting hardcore SF4 players that are actually nice. And because some people keep TROLLING MY BLOG Trolls to post random comments on my blog. To my friends, feel free to post, I will approve all comments that have helpful tips or have something kind to say.

UPDATE: 4/24/09 10:06am

My SFIV regular edition Madcatz stick is supposed to arrive today. I hope that they deliver it even though there's no one home to accept the package. :p I originally wanted to go home, play with the new fight stick and see how different it is, then go to Arcade Infinity and meet up with the guys for some SFIV action... but now I'm deciding to stop by, pick up the package then go to Arcade Infinity immediately after. I won't be able to head out there til around 7:30ish so I want to make sure I can still catch Jack and them there. :D Jack has agreed to help me with Sagat since he's one of the best Sagat players there. I'm pretty excited because all I know how to do is all the basic moves, supers and Ultras... I can do EVERY move he has but don't know how to string them together for deadly combos yet... that is why I need help from someone who is familiar with the character.

Well... back to work I go. Break isn't over yet but I want to get to answering some emails! Thanks to everyone for asking me advice on all your gaming needs and for all the fan mail about the WCG Ultimate Gamer show. Yeah it sucked to lose on episode 6 but I'm still proud of myself. Mark being in first place and me being last in NBA Live and only having maybe 8 full hours of practice time and running a 14-20 game... I think that's pretty damn bad ass especially since it was REALLY 14-17 and he threw a 3 pt shot from half court last second (yeah I keep talking about that because it was an amazing final shot that seemed impossible). The fact that I picked up a game I NEVER played before and learned it well enough in 8 hours to compete against someone who had been playing since the game was released and actually keep him on his toes until the 4th quarter. It's things like this that make me believe I can do this with SFIV. Dedication+Time+Skill= pure pwnage... Can't wait to learn some moves from the guys!

Oh and events I'll be attending this year so far: Evo (workin on it) E3, E For All, PAX 09, QuakeCon and the Iron Man of Gaming. I will also be attending a WCG event or two if they're local, but not to compete as I stated earlier... I left the GH competitive scene. :D See you all this Summer/Fall!

Ok guys, you wanted to know so here it is... THIS is how serious I am about this whole SF4 thing...

I am OFFICIALLY retiring from Guitar Hero. I may play for fun here and there but I WILL NOT be competing anymore. I will NOT be competing in the World Cyber Games for 2009 (I will forfeit every match for the 5 weeks I signed up) and I WILL NOT be attending any tournaments exclusively for this game. I WILL NOT be practicing for this year as I am dedicating all of my free time to getting better at Street Fighter IV.

Gootecks ( has a dream and I want to be there to help him with it. I really believe that I have to potential to go really far with this game and I hope that you all will stand by my side as I go from Scrub status to Pro status. I don't care how long it takes, I will play 40+hours a week every week until I am ranking top 8 locally then I want to go into overdrive mode playing 60+hours a week.

To help make this happen I am getting rid of my Guitar Hero items to help so I can get some top of the line Street Fighter equipment and to help get me to Evo this year. I will be selling my GH3 wireless les paul, my Guitar Hero 3 Wired Les paul (rare find) with the Gamespot rocktacular tournament skin from my 3rd place victory on their Tournament TV show, some StarSlay3r skinned Explorer wired controller as well as my Astro Guitar Hero case (holds 2 guitars), my soft guitar hero coffin case bag, and lastly... my guitar hero HARD coffin case. YES I'm selling it all, if you want it autographed or want an autographed picture with it I can do that. :D I have posted some pics in my twit pic album if you want to see my Gamespot Rocktacular guitar and Coffin Case along with the Astro case.

I hope to show the world that I am VERY serious about this... I hope to gain enough attention to actually get some supporters and companies to have my back on this. I NEED to get good at this game... well not good but REALLY GOOD. I mean seriously I've got to catch up to guys who already have over 500+ hours logged and have completed over 1000 online matches. I have a LOT of catching up to do, and I KNOW I can do this. I have faith in myself and gootecks has faith in me. He is helping me train and is taking the time out of his busy schedule for me which should show you all that he knows I have potential. My goal is 6 months to start being the top female as well as ranking high with males as well. This is just a goal, but I think it's a reasonable one.

Goodbye Guitar Hero... Hello Street Fighter IV. "Street Fighter Will Change Your Life" he said... is he right? It was destiny that gootecks and I met that day... and I am forever in your debt gootecks... I will make you proud... I will practice my ass off... and I WILL be whooping ass in Street Fighter IV before you know it!

Today I went to a Street Fighter IV tournament at Arcade Infinity (not my first) but I started comparing GH tournies to SF tournies and I'm amazed at the differences. SF4 is very underground and guitar hero is so mainstream... the people that exceed in guitar hero get very little respect and no one is chanting out their name at tournaments or screaming for them when they hit a star phrase or nail a solo... because no one really cares. Street Fighter IV is a game of skill, mind games, and the crowd LOVES IT! I have never seen people watching a game get so into the match that they screamed, yelled, swore, jumped around, high fived and the like... it was amazing to see people get so pumped up. I really think that Street Fighter is THE game that should make everyone drop whatever they're doing and play... this game is amazing. Click HERE to see/ hear what a Street Fighter Tournament is like... AMAZING I tell you!

I just hope that in the end this is the right choice. I trust gootecks entirely and leave my gaming career in his hands... I will do everything in my power to succeed at this but ultimately I need his help and support in this... so please ... don't let me down boy, and I promise the same.

This is a common problem... Since SO MANY of you are having this problem I have turned this from a response to a blog. I will add more tips daily as you guys ask more questions. If you have a question on how to do something post on here and I will comment back in a new blog. :D

The question:

Sean said...

I just started getting into GH/RB and I can't seem to get Orange Fretting down, I think my hands are stupid. Any advice before I go lefty?

The answer:

Learn this NEW hand position...

Move your hand down so your pinky is sitting on orange and your index on red. It's easier to stretch your index to green than it is to stress out that poor pinky. Once you are comfortable with this position the next step is to learn to transition from the index on red/ pinky on orange to the index on green/ pinky on blue positions when necessary so that you can use your two strongest fingers (index/middle) to hit whatever notes are more prominent during that section. If you see a lot of green/reds approaching move your hand to the first position (g/b) and if you see a lot of yellows blues and oranges move it to the second (red to orange) The goal is to use your pinky as little as possible however shifting your hand around as needed to try to hit a majority of the buttons using only your index, middle and ring fingers.

Trills (a series of back and forth notes) that consist of Oranges and blues should be hit using your index/middle or middle/ring fingers since they're stronger and easier to control, however it's tricky to shift your hand down that fast then repositioning it to the red-orange position without missing notes.

Another method is to learn "tapping" videos can be found on youtube. This technique is when you strum with your right hand then bring that hand up to the frets using it to tap on the blue/orange buttons during hammer on/ pull off and slider sections. This is especially useful for songs like "Spiderwebs" on GH: World Tour, "Our Truth" on GH: World Tour, and "Through the Fire and the Flames" GH3 as well as other songs of the like.

I want to make a youtube "HANDS" video for you on a song that you have trouble with so you can see what I'm talking about. I'll try to do a picture in picture if possible so you can see how I shift my hand. Please send me a message with a song you'd like me to show you the technique for. :D

I hope this helped. If not or if you need further explanation let me know. :D

April 1, 2009

Bad sport of the week (episode 4)

Ep4_bad_sport.jpgWhat the heck was Ciji thinking? For the first time on the show, one of the contestants considered gaming the overall competition instead of whatever was in front of her nose. Up to this point, everyone has been focusing on the game of the moment, competing only at the current task rather than the big picture.

In this past episode, Ciji finally shows a little forward thinking with a way to drop herself into the elimination challenge against someone who would be a threat later. Robert? Dante? Even poor Jamal? And in the process, she would keep Geoff around, who she could probably beat later on. She puts forth an excellent plan to throw the isolation challenge and then reneges on it.

The moment she started moving her feet in time to the beat, I knew two things: 1) Geoff was going to lose that episode, and 2) Ciji wasn't going to make it to the end. Yet for some strange reason only she is privvy to, she had to play out the song.

For me one of the most lasting images of the show will be the picture above, after Ciji finished the song in the isolation challenge. She figuratively and literally turns her back on the competition as a whole. Ah, Ciji...

Posted by Tom Chick at 4:01 PM

Oh Tom... if you only knew. Hell MANY of you are saying the same thing. "I can't believe Ciji did that" Let me clue you in.

Geoff and I had a NICE LONG discussion... as did Jamal and I, Swoozie and I and Rob and I. Rob and Swoozie say "I won't promise to put Dante against you..." Rob says "I want Jamal out" as is made clear watching the episode. Jamal of course promises to put Dante against me if I lose. Jamal also says "if Rob or Swoozie wins it might be me VS you... don't risk it". Geoff says "I'd owe you big time if you did it, but I wouldn't risk it... it's MY TIME. I knew this would happen."

Did you not see the tears in my eyes as Joel called out his name? What you didn't hear were the words "I'm sorry Geoff" as he called his name. My statement "I did what I needed to do" was to tell Geoff I didn't drop out, and to make Dante THINK I did... it was to give everyone the impression I did WHAT I SAID I'D DO, but Geoff knew.

Dislike my decision all you want... you say I should have kept him around to easily eliminate him later... how dare you. I love Geoff... he's a GREAT friend, I'd never intentionally keep him around for "easy pickings"... he's a fighter and since Amy has been posting all over the Frag Doll forums this info I'll post it too... Amy failed, so did Mark. That's 3 Failures... Geoff just had to last a bit longer than them.... I had faith he could stay out of last on his own so screw what you say... I'm not a poor sport... I'm a good friend. The decision to play was a tough one... but once I started doing it the thoughts of the $100k and my daughter gave me motivation to keep going. Like the episode showed... I actually half assed the beginning thinking... "should I fail now... risk it all... or keep going?" After all the fighting I was thinking of throwing it still based off my disliking for Dante.

In the end... I did what I NEEDED to do. I am still in touch with Geoff and he's not mad at me for my decision... he's the one who helped me make it.

To Geoff... You did great... See you at the World Cyber Games this summer.

Well... it's that time of year again. The World Cyber Games qualification rounds begin at the end of this month I believe. I have signed up for a few of the west coast dates but am giving myself 1 month to prepare.

I haven't honestly played Guitar Hero World Tour for more than a total of maybe 10-15 hours since I came back from the reality show. Having Rock Band as our first challenge meant that we had Rock Band around the longest and since I REALLY hate the Rock Band guitar I played the drums a lot. Once I left the house I was already up to Expert level and with a 2 week break off work I worked my way up to Expert level on Guitar Hero World Tour with their drum set as well. Ever since Metallica came out I have been playing Expert+ on that having a BLAST! I really LOVE drumming and want to show off my skills. I'm not JUST good at guitar, my skills translate into other games and instruments as well... Every rhythm game I play I can play on Expert difficulty. :D Well... getting back to my point... I recently have been practicing World Tour on Guitar again for WCG. I am SOOOO bored! Really I can 100% about 60 or so songs I think? Something like that... and I am not having fun. Why? Because it's getting too technical now. Yeah I can 100% the songs but now I have to memorize star paths of my own or go on youtube and scorehero and research star paths on there. It's a pain in the ass... I play GH for fun, and while I love to compete, this is the shitty part of it. I am stressing out trying to memorize too much at once...

On top of GH I really wanted to enter the WCG for Virtua Fighter. While I didn't fair so well on the show, I am actually really good at the game when it comes to person vs person instead of person vs ai. I will have to see if I can borrow an arcade stick or get a cheap one for the qualifiers and if I make it to nationals get a nicer one.

Yeah... so this is my schedule for the next month or so. Work M-F 8:30 to 5:30 and I usually get home around 8pm (stupid traffic) Mondays I watch Heroes so I practice around that, Tuesdays I watch the show at 7pm so I rush home ASAP to watch it and start practicing from 8:30 to 11 or so, Wed-Fri Practice from 8:30 to 11 or so and Sat/Sun Practice as much as possible around errands and such. Somewhere in that schedule I have to make time to visit either the arcade by my house to practice DDR or to Arcade Infinity to practice Beatmania, Drummania, Guitar Freaks, DDR, Para Para Paradise, DJ MAX Technika and Pop n' Music.

I really want to get my name spreading around the Arcade scene again. Everyone used to know me at Gameworks in MI because I was always there KILLING on DDR and Indy 500. I couldn't be beat at Indy 500 (except one guy who worked there cuz he practiced every day to beat And was in the top 30 for DDR players in MI (which isn't saying TOO much but I was still kinda proud of it) I just hated not getting at least top 10 in the DDR tournaments there... people are SOO good at that game! But yeah, I definitely want to show off my skills at Arcade Infinity more, it's a shame it's so far away.

If only I didn't have to work so much. I think right now my job sets me back the most in pro gaming. If I didn't have to work 40-60 hours a week I could practice 60-80 hours a week (like I do when I'm on vacation from work) and could REALLY get on top of those leaderboards!

Well... break time is over. :sigh: I'll write more later.

Here's what I was up to the other day when I was online. I am mostly going back and trying to complete the World Tour on Expert Drums (I just started) and I'm playing the Guitar Hero Metallica Demo. I have only played each of these songs 1 time when I took these pics, I will update with new better scores soon. :D

Yes, I can play Expert Guitar, Bass AND Drums. I am working on Expert vocals but I suck at singing... I wont lie. heh I plan on mastering all 3 instruments on Metallica for tournaments to ensure that once I get a team assembled that we are able to interchange on songs for optimal performance. That way if my drummer is better at a certain song on guitar than me we can swap. This has worked well in prior tournaments for Rock Band. :D

I have also had the chance to try GH: Metallica on Expert drums and I'm proud to say I can complete songs with the double bass! I can't wait to show everyone how much I've improved. :D

Yes... again apparently people are claiming to be better than me. I don't mind if you think you're better, all I can say is can you back it up?

Funny how WCG Ultimate Gamer is a magnet to cocky gamers all over the world who say they can beat us, we suck, so on. I even read in a blog today where one person had the nerve to say "Jamal was even driving the wrong way on the 3rd lap!" Wow people!

FYI- Since PGR4 was this weeks game I'll briefly touch base on that. In ANY racing game where you're going for your best lap mistakes are crucial to your time. If you are ... lets say 2/4 laps in and in the final turn just before you cross the line for lap 3 you hit the wall. The correct thing to do is to STOP, TURN AROUND and drive in the wrong direction a ways back to build up your speed. Ideally you want to be going 80-100 mph depending which Racing game you're playing and what track you're on. By reversing you gain speed and cross the line starting fresh at 0 with an mph of 80-100 instead of spending the first 10th of the track gaining speed starting at 30-40mph after a massive hit. If YOU think you're good at racing games you should know this. "Burning laps" (for example) don't rank you based on if you're 1st 2nd 3rd etc crossing the line, but on your fastest lap time. In WCG Ultimate Gamer, fastest lap time is all that mattered. So again, you think you're better than us? Zophar321 and I openly challenge all competitors to Burnout, PGR4, NFS, and Forza 2. Don't talk unless you can back it up.

Someone recently also had the balls (figeratively of course) to say my gaming resume was "padded". I couldn't help but laugh. Here's why.

When I did wcg ultimate gamer I was ranked 5th. I was above 90% of the people until I came back from the show to find my ranking fell to 10th. STILL AWESOME. Anyways since then I had become really good at the drums and moved onto that. I still play guitar but got a sneak peek at GH: Metallica and was hooked. I've been practicing for that and am saving my time for that game. :D

Anywho, I have enough GH wins under my belt to where I could say I'm the best female GH player of all time if I want... but I don't because I'm not a b--- like that. I gladly challenge anyone who dares to say they're better than me to GH:Metallica straight out of the box. You pick ANY song you want on guitar. :D That's how confident I am. Activision was confident enough to bet consoles on me... How confident are you? I dare any GH pro to put something they actually care about on the line against me. See how confident you are then.

As far as rankings go. People think just cuz they're in the top of that they're the best. While there are top gamers on there (priest, wolfe, witwix, lo7) there are people on xbl that have #1 rankings that are "unkowns". XBL rankings mean more to me than rankings. When I play a song and see my name at 3rd on XBL and supposedly 20 ppl say they have a better score than me on I call B.S. score modifers. While I don't update my scores these days (It's called being smart! I'll explain why below) I still play, and am still 100%ing scores just like last year. :D My last national tournament I claimed 3rd and it was on gamespot tourament tv for verification. Don't be jealous because ppl are talking to me more than you about Guitar Hero, hell I'd rather NOT talk about it personally, It's more than about being #1 girl though. THAT'S not why they're interested in me. Soon you will stop taking this personally and realize it's personality they love.... not necessarily just my skill. Think about it... why don't we see more of witwix? He's a great guy, but people don't talk about him too much since it's hard to remember him. If you are just like everyone else, noone will remember you. Not trying to be mean, it's true. Why don't people remember JD on WCG Ultimate Gamer yet they remember "crazy eyes" aka Prod1gy? He's unique. :D

Also, I am not with a team. Why you ask? (I've been asked in many interviews) One... I don't care for teams too much since they discourage players from playing multiple teams and from being open minded and have free speech. I'd rather be without a team then signed to a team to be pro at one game then never win any tournaments for the game they signed me for and only win in other games, or be forced to focus on one game. Most ppl dont know I started competing on UT and Quake and competed in DDR tournies starting in 99. If I got signed for GH but only won DDR tournies, I'd like to think my team wouldn't be happy since they are spending money promoting me as the 'guitar hero master'. I like being on my own since I can manage my own schedule, gain my own sponsors and deal with press as I please.(except now press deals with sci fis pr team... thank you sci fi!) Teams like MoB have offered me a contract but want me exclusively for RB and Guitar Hero. While I love both games I play them FOR FUN. Yes... I'm good at the game (pretty damn good actually) I LOVE to rock out while playing. Showmanship tournies are my love. I love performing in front of a crowd and FOR them. Anyone can stare at a screen but do you have personality? I'm sick of GH and RB zombies. Who the hell wants to watch them both stare at a screen for 5-10 minutes? Really? Hell I hate to do it... so I compete when bored, or challenged, other then that it's entirely for fun.

Going back to why I don't update my scores. My cell phone, personal photobucket and email are FULL with over 200 pictures from rock band and score hero of my updated scores. I have all scores archived and saved in an easy to read list much like scorehero. Why don't I update my actual scorehero list? What WCG Ultimate Gamer has tought me is people like to do research. Last year I actually had WCG competitors ask me to wait on the song selection screen while they went and looked up my scorehero scores. Challengers would then pick the song I had the worst score on when compared to them. While this is stretegic, it's also kind of pathetic. I prefer heads up... true skill, not... "I'm going to pick Raining Blood cuz I'm better than you by 40k and I memorized the star path" because I'm going to go off and go "I'm picking One because I feel like it". In the real world it's all heads up... you can't call time out to go google someones name and skills. Yeah, so in order not to show my strengths and weaknesses in songs I'm keeping it all archived til WCG is over. :D Go ahead and try to base my skill off my old scores, you'll be surprised at my improvement in the past 3 months. After learning that the teammates in the house had done research on me before the show, I have learned to keep my achievements in gaming to myself to a certain extent. :)

Also, all my tournament wins have been acknowledged and confirmed. I have no reason to lie and can prove all my skills. I get attention for my personality and skill... my charity work and cosplay. All good reasons. I'm an ALL AROUND GAMER, not a Guitar Hero queen, hence why I actually try to steer away from talking about guitar hero too much. I am a master of RHYTHM games. 10 years experience and noone can take me out on drummania, beatmania, guitarfreaks, ddr, rock band, guitar hero, and Rock Revolution overall. You may beat me at a song here and there on one or two of those but overall I'll beat you over and over. I do not focus my skills on one region, because I have many skills that should thrive and not be confined. Last year my GH skills got me even MORE attention than I expected, which was cool, but people have lost sight with the fact that I'm a GAMER not a Guitar Hero. Please keep this in mind. WCG Ultimate Gamer was the beginning... next is SGC and Guinness world records with Prod1gyX. ;)

Next week on WCG Ultimate Gamer is DDR. To celebrate, I am going to throw out an open challenge to all gamers. You think you have game? Come challenge me at Arcade Infinity. There's over 10 different kind of rhythm games there from DDR to ParaPara Paradise to DJ MAX Technika and more and I will own you in all of them. Typing of the dead? No problem... in Japanese? Even better! House of the Dead, Initial D3... let me pull out my Initial D card! I will win in all of them... why? Because it's what I do. Arcade games are def. my strongest point. 1998-2006 I went to Gameworks Arcade in Auburn Hills 2-5 days a week. Ask THEM about my skills. :D

Not trying to be a cocky jerk, but when people who don't know me write big long blogs about how I am "padding" my resume. I just have to say this. "Where's your gamer resume?" shall we sit and compare? How about one step better... I'll just say this instead... "See all of you who dare to challenge me at SGC 2009. GAME ON!"