Tuesday, March 11, 2008

No One Came

This one starts out as usual. I took the train after work to Akihabara and played casuals like I always do. I saw Basara there among some other top players like Ogawa. I asked Basara when the first qualifier for SBO will be. He says it will be in Tokyo in Nakano at TRF game center on 4/6. However, he said that he and Domi will not be able to enter that qualifier due to Domi having other business to attend to. As far as I can tell they still plan to team up with me for future tournaments but im not sure. I played for a bit and got a few small streaks. Didnt get around to playing Ogawa or anything. Eventually it started to die so I went to Shinjuku. The night at Current was pretty typical with nothing really noteworthy to mention.

The next day there was a tournament schedule at Las Vegas in Shinjuku which is conveniently located across the street from where I sleep. I woke up, got some food, and started playing casuals. There was a good Zappa player sitting at the cab next to me. I had played him before at Akihabara last weekend and went back and forth with him. He had a nice win streak so I asked him if he wanted to team up with me. At first he said he wasnt sure yet. Eventually I guess he must have been watching me play and saw me beat some good people so he said he would team up with me after all. His handle is Mitsurugi. This was a 2 on 2 tournament so all that was left now was to wait till it started. We signed up under the name the Dr/patient team since its Faust and Zappa. After signups it ended up as being a round robin tourny with 2 pools of 5 teams with the top 2 teams playing in the finals. Our first match was against a team of 2 Sol players (they allowed same character teams). These Sols were both extremely unorthadox and just played very off the wall and non conventional. You can tell they were friends and played together often because they pretty much used a lot of the same tricks. Lots of stuff dealing with momentum from FRCd special moves involving mobility tactics and extended dust loop type stuff. I went first and my match was very close but I lost. I had beat both of the Sols in casuals before the tourny but then I lost to one of them right before the tourny started. Mitsurugi went next and managed to beat both Sols. Up next we had to fight a team of 2 girls. One was the Dizzy player who won the all girls tournament that I accidently went to about a month ago. The other was this really hot Zappa player who I often see around. I went first against Dizzy and lost in a close game. Mitsurugi proceeded to beat both of them. Up next was a team of Pochio (Slayer) and Abagen (Po). I went first vs Slayer. I won the first round but lost the 2nd round. The 3rd round started with Slayer doing a gold burst which hit me and he got full meter. I wasnt expecting this at all and no one really ever uses this strategy but it worked well since Slayer with a full bar has so much potential to just rape you in the ass. I ended up losing. Unfortunately Mitsurugi also lost to Slayer but im not surprised given how bad a mathup that is for Zappa. The last match of our pool was vs a duel Dizzy team. One was a girl and I think she was the girlfriend of the other guy on the team. I went first against the girl and beat her pretty easily. Then I lost in a very close match to the other guy. Mitsurugi also lost to he male Dizzy. With our record at 2 and 2, we didnt advance out of our pool. In the end the Abagen/Pochio team won the whole tournament. I didnt feel like I played exceptional in the tournament matches and was doing much better in casuals after the tourny. I stayed and played for several hours and managed to beat everyone I lost to in the tournament but it was too little too late. I was determined to do better at the Game Newton singles tournament that was schedule for the next day. Gin was there and had also played in the tournament with a Potemkin player but was in the other pool. I played against him in casuals and was beating him pretty hard. He went out of his way tot tell me that ive gotten a lot better since last time we played. He still has no team for SBO so I could team with him most likely if it comes down to it but I dunno. After the tournament a lot more top players just randomly showed up like Zero and H.H. among others. I asked H.H. who his SBO team was out of curiosity and he said he didnt have one yet. I told him that Basara and Domi is most likely going to be my team but that theres a chance they may not be able to make it to a lot of tournaments. I asked H.H. if he would like to team up with me if they cant play. He said he would be willing to do it so we exchanged email. I played him about 3 times and beat him one, the other 2 games were extremely close. One of the unorthadox Sol players managed to beat H.H. too. I ended the night with playing a shit ton of games vs one of the Sols and went back and forth with him. Then I got a message from my friend Liz.

Liz was around since she had gone to a concert in Saitama. She had to return back to her home fairly early on Sunday morning so she wouldnt be able to get a hotel room and sleep late so she decided she wanted to go drinking with me all night and just take the first train home. She emailed me when she arrived at Shinjuku station and I went to go find her. She got lost a hell and after lots of email tag and wondering around I told her to just stay put and eventually found her. Once I found her though everything was cool. We stopped at First Kitchen and got some food. I had a fish sandwich and a beer.

We then walked to Current. We stayed and drank there for a few hours. Eventually Chip showed up with a friend of his named Sawa. She is a friend of his from back in Osaka. She spoke perfect English and had a British accent since she studied in the UK. The 4 of us eventually went to Gravity. The dudes who work there were excited to see me since it had been a while. Right away they were asking me to sing songs on the mic while they played them on guitar. I figured why not. They asked me to sing a song by some and ive never heard before and I didnt know how it went so it wasnt so great. The next 2 songs I sang were Bark at the Moon by Ozzy and Rock and Roll by Zeppelin. I did good on both of those and Sawa complimented me on my singing (even though I think its pretty mediocre at best). After that we went back to Current for one more beer and then they closed. The first train back to Gunma didnt leave until after 6 so Liz had time to kill. I took her to PSY for some more drinking since they are open till 6. Nothing to eventfull happened there, we just had more drinks and talked about various things. Eventually they closed so I walked her near the station so she wouldnt get lost and went back to the Manga kissa for sleep.

The next day I woke up with some time to kill since the Tournament at Game Newton wasnt scheduled to start till 5. I went to Shinjuku station and stood in line to buy some overnight bus tickets for my spring break trip to Kansai. I was able to get roundtrip tickets for just under 10,000 yen, which is like 1/4 the price of a roundtrip shinkansen ticket. I will leave from Shinjuku and arrive in Osaka. Since the first SBO qual is the last weekend of spring break on Sunday I will leave Osaka Saturday night and return on Sunday morning. After buying the tickets I headed over to Oyama for the Game Newton tournament. I wanted to get there early so I could get lots of casuals in to warm up. Much to my dismay, when I arrived there were only 3 people in the whole arcade. One was the guy who worked there who seemed to be doing repair work on the main cab that would be used for the tourny. There was also some random guy just playing some Gundam game alone. The last guy was playing 3S. I had time to kill so I decided to play 3S for like the first time in forever. I was never good at the game to begin with because I never put any real effort into learning it but I almost beat the guy. He was using Q. Then I played him like 2 more times and got owned so I just said fuck it and went for a walk. After a while I returned to the arcade it and was still dead with no one playing GG. I went for another walk and came back. This time there was one guy playing AC against the computer. I got on the cab and played against his Sol, beat him without losing a round. Then he picked Johnny on me 2 times and I beat him both times without losing a round again. Then he gave up and left the arcade. At this point it was 5 minutes after 5:00 and I asked the guy who worked at the arcade what was going on. There was infact a tournament scheduled for today but no one showed up at all. It was kinda depressing and I really have no idea why. Game Newton isnt the biggest arcade and its not in the most convenient location, but I had been there twice before and they had good turnouts. I didnt feel like wasting any more of my day for the slight chance that maybe I could play in a 3 man tournament that would start an hour late so I just left and went back to Shinjuku.

During the time when I was walking around Oyama to kill time, I thought to email the girl who I am buying my X-Japan concert ticket from and ask her what time the show starts and ends, since it occured to me that my overnight bus trip that leaves after the show might be too early. She said it would be cutting it close but said I could get another ticket for Friday instead. I told her to check it out for me. Then I thought about it and if I did that id have to take an extra vacation day so I decided to change my bus ticket to a later time. I changed it to about an hour later and it costed about 3000 yen more but its worth it since the Friday ticket was more expensive anyway. I then told her I changed it and she seemed kinda upset that I didnt wait to tell her first but after a string of emails it seems its going to be fine and I can still go to the Sunday show. I then pretty much just played casuals for like the last 2 hours at Vegas. The hot Zappa chick was there and a few other people but nothing too noteworthy was going on.

On the way home on the train, I got an email from Basara. I had mailed him the day before telling him that if they couldnt team with me I would team with H.H. They said that since they couldnt make the 4/6 tournament to go ahead and team with him. They mentioned nothing about further tournaments but as far as I can tell its still fine to be on their team. I emailed H.H. to tell him about the 4/6 tourny but he still hasnt responded to my email. In addition to that I dont really know who else we will have on our team but I guess it wont be too hard to figure out.

Next week theres a 3 on 3 at Game Chariot in Goi that I will most likely go to. At least people will actually show up to this one. Lets just hope its not some all girls bullshit or posted as the wrong date :P

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