This weekend started out with casuals at Akihabara on Friday night as most weekends often do. Ogawa and some other top players were there and I got some good games in. Nothing too noteworthy happened. After casuals I headed to Current. A few regulars were there but it wasn't anything out of the ordinary. At about 4:00 am I headed to GODZ for a beer but it was dead as hell. They played a few Symphony X songs for me which was cool. After that I left and went to sleep.
Saturday I headed back to Akihabara since there would be a 3 on 3 there today. As usual, I had no team in advance so I began going around and asking various people if they needed a team mate. After asking several people I finally found a HOS player named riri-burasuto (Lily-blast?) that had no team. Our 3rd team member was randomly assigned to us among the left over people by the Akihabara staff, he was an I-no player named Sesanichiko. There were tons of top players at this tournament so I knew it wasnt going to be easy. There were 14 teams total. I checked the brackets and our first match was against Osaka B's team. I dont know who the people on his team were since I think they were randomly placed with him but one was an Anji player and the other was a Slayer player. First match was I-no vs Anji, I-no wins. Next I-no loses to Slayer. Then HOS goes and beats Slayer. Next, HOS loses to Osaka B's Faust. I was assigned the position of anchor so I went last vs Osaka B. Things started off great. I took the first round and was playing well. 2nd and 3rd round were close but I made a few stupid execution mistakes and lost by a little bit. I played casuals for the rest of the time there. The winning team was Isa 012 and Machaboo. I stayed at Akihabara pretty late and played casuals. Ogawa showed up after the tourny was over and said hi. I only played him one time cuz I had a streak on the cabinet next to him for a while so I didnt really have much time to play him, he won. One notable victory I had was against Hakkutsoryuu's Faust. He had a 40 something win streak and I managed to end it. Eventually it got late so I left and headed back to Shinjuku.
That night at current was packed. There were a few guest DJs and lots of new people there as well as a few regulars. Anti (the guy from Finland) came with some of his friends and as he often does, offered me some tabacco that comes in a little pouch that you stick between your lip and gums (sorry, I dont know exactly what this is called, its not chew though). That stuff gives you a crazy buzz. He ended up giving me a whole pack of it since he had a bunch so I had like 3 of them and was buzzing pretty hard. I had a lot of beer and talked to various people. At the end of the night, Masami (one of the bar tenders) was cleaning up and someone had left a pack of cigarettes on the table and it was almost completely full. He offered it to me so I took it since lately ive been smoking a few here and there when I drink on the weekends. The cigarretes were called "Peter Jackson" which I found rather amusing. They were from Australia and the packaging was rather interesting. Appearently, in addition to the surgeon general warning that always appears on packs, in Australia they have a giant ugly picture of a pair of infected lungs with a warning message against lung cancer. Not very appealing at all. Throughout the rest of the weekend I still smoked the whole pack anyway though haha.
The next day I had a choice of either going to a tournament in Yokohama, or a 5 on5 at Shinjuku Sportsland. I sorta wanted to go to Yokohama since I had never been there, but Sportsland was a 5 minute walk from where I slept so I just said fuck it and went there. Plus I had never played in a 5 on 5 in Japan before so I wanted to see how that went. Before I had headed to Sportsland I went to Vegas first since its even closer to where I sleep and cheaper for pre tournament casuals, so there are often a good ammount of people at Vegas before Sportsland tournys. I played there for a good while and ended up getting like a 14 win streak until I eventually lost in a close match to an I-no player. I think I pretty much beat everyone in there at least once during my streak. I asked around a little to try and see if I could get a team going. There was a May player named Suumei who was playing on the cab next to me and I asked him if he needed a team mate. He said he had no team so we agreed to team up. Everyone else who was in there already had teams. Eventually in the middle of my streak the May player said he was going to Mikado to play (which is 1 minute walk from Vegas.... I heard from Chip that Mikado is closing down soon btw which is sad, it has a long history of good street fighter tournaments). After I lost my streak I headed over to Mikado to see what was up. I played against Suumay a few times and the most of the people that were at Vegas showed up at Mikado and I played a bit against them. Then after a while it was getting late so we all started to walk over to Sportsland together. On the way there, a few of the players were giving me props saying my Faust was strong and stuff and were asking about where I was from and everything. I humbly denied my Faust being strong and told them I was from Chicago and that Chicago had a lot of strong players. As usual they were very surprised to hear that the U.S. has barely any arcades and that we play on PS2 most of the time. Upon arriving at Sportsland the place was very packed. The tournament was pretty huge and there ended up being 13 teams (65 players) and just about every top player in Tokyo was there. I certainly picked the right tournament. During signups me and Suumay registered that we would be on the same team and the rest of our team was assigned by the staff among the leftovers. I dont remember all of their names but in addition to myself and May, our team consisted of Eddie, Johhny, and Baiken. I dont know who the people were that we fought, but our first match went like this. Eddie goes first against Axl and loses. Then May beats Axl. Then May loses to Potemkin. Then I go and lose to Potemkin as well. I suffered a brain fart and just got owned in the corner and just basically couldnt do anything. This Potemkin player was pretty solid and ended up beating the rest of our team by himself, I dont even know what other characters were on their team. I played casuals throughout the tournament occasionally watching a match here and there on the big screen. The finals were Isa's team vs Nemo's team. The finals were hype as hell, everyone was yelling all loud and shit, it felt like a fucking US Marvel tournament or something. Isa had Maruken and Zero on his team, I forgot who the others were. Nemo had this really great Chipp player on his team that ended up beaing most of Isa's team by himself but he lost to Isa and the final match was Isa vs Nemo with Isa coming out ahead for the win. So at this point Isa was 2 for 2 this weekend and was at the top of his game. I played casuals there for a bit longer and evetually was hungry so I went to get some food.
Instead of going back to Sportsland after eating I went to Vegas instead, predicting that most people would be doing the same due to lower prices. I was indeed correct and Vegas was packed. I played there for a while, there were lots of good players there. There was a really solid ABA player there that was beating a lot of good players. Kazuki lost to him a couple times. I lost to him a few times in very close matches but I eventually ended his win streak. I hate fighting ABA as I often feel so helpless against her. ABA combos seriously have to do the most damage in the whole game. Eventually at around 9:30 I decided I was going to head to Ikebukuro and try to go to this other rock bar called Paradise City that Chip was telling me about. Current is awsome but I felt like going somewhere new to mix it up a bit. As I was leaving, Osaka B left right after me and caught up with me and we walked to the train station together and had a good chat. He said he was going home. We talked about various things. He told me that my Faust was really strong and stuff but I told him I'm still not very strong yet. I asked him what matchups he has the most trouble with and he surprisingly said Slayer and Testament. While these characters are both extremely powerful, it seems (at least to me) that Faust has worse matchups. I told him I have the hardest time with May and Millia. I also asked him about his SBO team and as FAB had said, they are teaming up, but the Millia player on their team is actually Nakamura afterall.... so that team is gonna be pretty broken. I told him I didnt have a team yet but its cool cuz its still early. Eventually we got to the train platform and he started reaching in his bag and busted out a bag with a box of Japanese pound cake in it. He gave it to me as a gift for absoloutly no reason at all. Osaka B is a totally cool guy. I asked him if he wanted to go to the bar with me for some beers but he said he didnt drink alchohal and was tired and wanted to go home. When the train got to Ikebukuro I got off and said bye to Osaka B and told him id see him tomorrow at the Shinjuku Club Sega 3 on 3.
When I got to Ikebukuro I followed Chip's instructions on how to get to Paradise City. He said it was about a 5 minute walk from the west exit of the station. I walked around for a bit but couldnt find it. I emailed Chip on my phone to ask him how to get there. He called me back and gave me more details. After about a minute later he called me back again and told me he checked the bar's website and that they were closed tonight due to it being a holiday the next day. I thanked Chip and told him id see him in a few weeks since he would be leaving for San Fransisco for a few weeks for a business trip. Having wasted time walking around Ikebukuro I felt like playing more Guilty so I headed back to Shinjuku to play more at Vegas. There were less people there now but a few good players like Nakamura and FAB were still there playing. I got some more games in against various people and eventually everyone pretty much left so it was time to go drinking. I headed to Current since it was pretty much the best bet at this point.
When I got there there were a few people, a group of the Cirque guys, and a few others. I chatted with the Cirque guys and they eventually left, and then I spend most of the rest of the night talked with this girl named Mai and Mogi and Sushi (Curent staff). I decided to share the cake that Osaka B gave to me with everyone and it was good shit, they all enjoyed it. There were also these random Australians there on vacation. They were trying to take a group picture with the staff and I offered to take the picture for them so they could all be in it. Their camera was all messed up and the memory was full and the flash settings were all screwed up so it came out semi blurry. Then they were trying to take another picture later and I offered to to it again but one of the guys made a rude comment along the lines of "thats ok we want it to come out clear this time". Jerk off. When they were ready to leave, the girlfriend of the jerkoff dude wanted to keep drinking. She was pretty wasted and it took a lot of convicing by her boyfriend that it was time to leave. Eventually after a lot of bitching from the girl and negative comments and pouting towards her boyfriend they managed leave. Sushi seemed releaved when they left haha. After that... me, Sushi, Mogi, and Mai were the only ones there. We talked for a bit and Sushi told me that tomorrow they would be closed for the first time in a while. I asked him what he would do with his day off. He said to me in English, "I will wake up, then I will fucking alone. Then I will make breakfast.... and then fucking alone. Then I will watch TV... and then fucking alone. Then I will go shopping and then come home and... fucking alone. Then before sleep I will fucking alone". Each time he said fucking alone, he made the up down motion with his fist hahah. I guess he doesnt know the word "masturbate." It was the funniest shit ever. He was just joking and said how he actually had real plans that day with his father who was coming to visit, but he said he would probably "fucking alone" anyway haha. Eventually it was time to go, they thanked me for always drinking there and I said goodbye to them all and headed out. Got some drunken curry and went to sleep.
The next day I woke up and went to Club Sega Shinjuku for the 3 on 3. When I arrived there werent many people there yet. I played a game of casuals against this one Dizzy player. I beat him 3 rounds in a row and the last round was a perfect ended by me dizzying him and taunting into a forward HS. After that he played me again and I proceeded to beat him 3 rounds again ending it with another perfect. This guy wasnt that bad but I was just in his head. After losing the 2nd time he SLAMMED the cabinet really fucking hard and stormed off. He didnt stay for the tournament hah. Eventually more people arrived and it got pretty packed. MIU was there working as I knew he would be. I had no team once again so I signed up on the extra person list. I thanked Osaka B again for the cake and told him I shared it with some friends and it was tasty. After playing casuals for a bit, MIU called over all the people who needed teams. There was a 2 person team consisting of a Millia player named R-1 and Basara the Slayer player. MIU asked R-1 to choose their 3rd person among the list of extras and much to my surprise he chose me. I guess either the rest of the players were shitty or he actually recognized me as being a good player. MIU then asked me to make a team name. I couldnt think of anything, but all weekend I was getting lots of posative reactions towards the Street Fighter II hoodie I was wearing (even when I was at Current everyone kept getting all excited when they saw the shirt and were acting out random SF specials moves haha) and MIU and R-1 thought it was pretty awsome so they named our team something along the lines of "this shirt is great." I was pretty excited about this team because both of those guys were solid players. Once again this tournament was packed with top players. There were 14 teams. Our first match was against a team of Anji, Testament, May. I dont know who they were but the May player was a purple May who I see around often and Im pretty sure hes one of the top Mays from SBO. We lost RPS so we had to choose our first player. R-1 and Basara elected me to go first. I went first against Anji and won. Then I went against Testament and won again. Up next was May. I was doing surprisingly well since I fuckin hate May and this guy was really good. I won the first round. 2nd round was close but I lost. 3rd round I almost won... he had about 5% health left but I went down unfortunately. I was pretty posative that my team mates would be able to beat May but much to my dissapointment, both Basara and R-1 lost to May as well resulting in what was one hit away from being an OCV by me turning into a reverse OCV by May. I was pretty bummed since I had expected this team to do better but I guess thats how it goes. There were some pretty broken teams at this tournament, including Osaka B, Nakamura, FAB (their SBO team), as well as Isa, Nemo, Imo. I thought for sure that Isa, Nemo, Imo would win it after I saw them win against Osaka B's team, but in the end they actually lost to Haaken's team (I dont remember who else was on it) in the finals. I played casuals for a while after the tourny but was starting to feel pretty tired but did alright for the most part. I managed to beat Zero's HOS which was cool. One thing I found surprising was Basara was playing Sol in casuals and his Sol was really good. It actually reminded me of Juicy G's Sol, probably the most similar to it out of any Japanese Sol's ive played. He beat the same May player with his Sol pretty easily, but seemed to have trouble with his Slayer. In addition I was beating his Slayer easier than his Sol... and I know the Sol matchup probably the best in the whole game. I wonder why he just doesnt play Sol instead of Slayer. Eventually it was time to go so I headed out and played some DS on the train ride home. When transfering trains at Takasaki I ran into Amy, one of the other ALTs who lives in my town. We had a chat for a bit about skiiing and other various things.
Thats about it for this week. It was a lot of fun and the competition was fierce as hell all weekend. Next weekend I will go to AOU to try out SFIV and BlazBlue followed by an Iron Maiden concert in Chiba. Sunday I will most likely play in a Guilty Gear tournament... maybe the one at Game Chariot or something.