Theory Fighter

A lot of people have been talking about what they would change in Monster and potential adjustments to the game/characters. Personally that kind of makes me sad because I really like the game how it is right now, and who knows how it would play with all these little adjustments. It is kind of fun to debate theory for a little while though. I wish other people were enjoying the game as much as I am. Then again, I try to focus on the positive stuff instead of the negative stuff.

That said, I guess I felt I should write some about what people have been suggesting. Mostly because they are just suggestions.

Naturally everyone has suggestions about the network. I'm sure that's getting improved and I think everyone just needs to chill, but whatever. Some things people have to say:
- Chat function in network
- Delay counter (which works like "Push Latency", if you're familiar with that).
- Allow players to change the ports that are used
- Don't freeze/lock the game when trying to access "Busy" player
- Show lag before connecting with players
- Allow a spectator mode

I don't know if I like all of these suggestions myself. The chat function would be nice, but I don't think a spectator mode is even remotely necessary. If there was a spectator mode I'd probably hate it -- I'd definitely want the ability to not allow spectators. That's what replays are for anyway.

Speaking of disabling though, I think if a delay counter was added then it should be customizable rather than automatic. I'd prefer the ability to toggle it or adjust it manually, rather than having it be automatic.

One simple suggestion I had was to fix how replays were unable to save if the player's name included an invalid filename character. For example, windows can not save files names with the following characters:
/ \ : ? " * > < |

That means if any of those characters are in the player's name, the replay will not save. Also regarding replays, I've noticed the game sometimes randomly crashes when trying to load very long filenames. Replays that have too many underscores (_ marks) for example will just randomly crash. I've gotten into the habit of auto-renaming all my replay files by numerical order now because of this.

Another suggestion that I actually agree with is to tone down back-dashing. On the one hand it's definitely a necessary tool for escaping certain really bad situations, like being anywhere near Delga for example. On the other hand they are sort of too good right now. Wake-up back-dashing reminds me of ground tech rolls in SF3:3S in a sort of way, except wake-up back-dashes are actually better than ground techs. It kind of makes the wake-up game a little dumbed down, since really all they do is extend your invulnerability time and move you backwards, which is exactly like tech-rolling when you think about it. But the big difference -- and also what makes them better -- is that you can't see the back-dash coming in advance. The fact that you have no idea if the opponent will wake-up back-dash or not makes it fairly difficult to plant any kind of meaty attack. In order to do a meaty you have to dash forward a bit and do the attack later than you normally would, but if you guess wrong you'll eat a wake-up 2A. And even if you guess right the opponent can still block while coming out of the back-dash, meaning it's not technically punishable. Some people might argue that you can punish a back-dash with the right tools, but that's not a luxury that all characters have. For example, F-Maya, F-Ryougen, F-Orju, and Aleksander are pretty good at countering wake-up back-dashes with the ability to quickly get on the other side of the opponent, which makes them dash the wrong way instead of backdashing -- and in the case of Aleksander, he can time his attacks a special way as to connect with the opponent as their invulnerability ends, and they aren't able to do anything about it other than eat it.

Although, I don't know how you would really fix it. I personally kind of like the idea of having recovery frames to back-dashes, which would at least make them punishable. But I'm not sure, theory fighting isn't really my forte.

Another thing that's been suggested is to implement a trip guard function, like the one in the Street Fighter series. Basically in the SF series you have recovery frames when landing from a jump. However, when you're landing from a jump you are able to instantly block as soon as you connect with the ground, this is called trip guarding because you're able to block low against sweeps (back before trip guards were implemented, sweeps were commonly used as anti-air). In the SF series though, Trip Guard is disabled when you attack while airborne. What that means is, if you attack in the air you will not be able to block a sweep the moment you land -- but you are able to block it if you don't attack. Monster doesn't seem to have this functionality as you're pretty much always able to block right when you land.

Another suggestion that I've previously mentioned was one submitted by Xiii: have normal throws decrease the opponents points. I can see how this would actually be a good idea, in a way. The theory goes that if the opponent is turtling and racking up points by successfully blocking all your attacks, one option is to throw in order to "beat" their blocking spree. However, throws are only mildly rewarding. When you land a successful throw you have the option to shift cancel it and go for a combo -- or just go strait into a combo if your character has that ability (Rail/Siely). But at the same time you also reset your points for hitting, but the opponents points are unaffected, so they can still burst at the right time and powerbreak you, or just be patient and save their shift for the right time.

But, personally I don't think throwing should remove all points. I'm kind of partial to the idea of it just reducing the opponents points by either a specific set amount or perhaps by a percentage. Removing all points would make throws simply too good, in my opinion. Especially considering how many extremely good throw set-ups there are in Freedom mode with a lot of characters.

Turbovec has also submitted the idea that blocking not gains as many points as hitting. He believes it's too easy to turtle for points, then use the points aggressively for powerbreaking. His idea was to either put some sort of proration or scaling on the way you gain points from blocking. That would mean that you'd get less points the more you block.

Personally I think that if there was a proration on point building then it'd have to be a very small amount. In order to get points from blocking you're technically putting yourself at risk of getting hit. It's not a very good idea to simply let your opponent rush you down and try to counter all of their attacks by blocking, unless you're sure you can get away with it or you don't have much other choice. I've been accused of "abusing" powerbreaks, but what other people call "abuse" I call "proper use". When people start rushing me down with characters that have extremely good pressure games, or when people start running away all round long, I have little choice but to utilize the powerbreak system in order to gain momentum and damage. If the point system got nerfed then I could see certain characters getting too powerful. Honestly I think the people who have problems with the point/powerbreak system just don't utilize it properly, or allow themselves to be the victim of it too easily. Not to dog on anyone in particular though, I've been running over nearly everyone with PB's lately until they (some of them anyway) wise up. You guys either need to strengthen your offense or stop letting me take advantage of points (pay attention!).

A few of us think it'd be nice if Rail's projectiles were easier to powerbreak. A lot of characters only options for powerbreaking his spirits attacks is to use shift, it would seem. Or at least, we definitely haven't found other reliable ways to do it even when we have point advantage. Most character's don't have attacks that can connect with Rail's spam very well.

I kinda agree with this one as well. But personally I don't think it's entirely necessary. A run-away Rail is definitely a nuisance, but no where near unbeatable or broken. A lot of players are just too impatient against M-Rail, especially including myself in that statement. But then, it's not like it's exactly easy to do. I would suggest to anyone to try and pick up M-Rail and see how difficult it is to do properly against a good opponent.

Ryougen is probably the most obvious thing that needs to get changed somehow though. I think everyone pretty much agrees that Ryougen just has a little too much going for him and needs to either be tweaked or nerfed in some way.

I agree that Ryougen needs some fixing, but then I don't want his playstyle to change much because I think it's kind of fun playing him. I'd much prefer technical nerfs like damage reduction or scaling. Though his counter move and catch move are both definitely a bit powerful.

4649/Chibita suggested a color edit mode. Which of course we all thought was stupid, hehehe.

Overall, I really like the game as-is. I personally wouldn't want much changed except perhaps backdashing. I'd rather stuff be added instead of being changed or removed. Most of us have been happy with the way the game has turned out so far. A lot of the suggestions are simply coming from us wondering what's going to happen next. We're really just excited about the game and wondering what the next patch will bring. I think a lot of us are confident that the author will make good judgements. I hate to say it, but I really hope he doesn't listen to every suggestion that comes his way, he's obviously a lot better at designing a game than any of us, hahaha. :)

Phew, glad I got that out of the way. I really don't like talking about suggestions or changes. I much prefer playing and enjoying!

Also, in regards to my last entry regarding unblockables, T-Othello also seems to have an unblockable as well. His 236b bite can't be blocked when shifted, which lets him combo into super if it connects. Seems fairly risky though due to the recovery time on it. But I felt it might be worth mentioning since I was talking about unblockables.

On a completely random side-note, I just recently noticed that you get a damage bonus for getting hit out of the air. So basically when you see that thing white circle "explosion" for getting hit while jumping, that means you took a damage bonus. I don't know, just a little FYI.



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