Top Tier

The Japanese gamers had their first official Monster tournament yesterday (the 10th), and they were kind enough to share some of the replay files with us. It's unfortunate that we didn't get all of the replays, but at least it was enough to see proof of what we had suspected all along.

First of all, some of the Japanese players are still ahead of us in skill and experience by a noticeable margin (but not all of them), which comes as no surprise. Second, they are tier whores just like the rest of us.

Othello was by far the most picked character in their tournament, and it's really not hard to see why. A lot of western players have naturally gravitated to this character as well, but there's really only a few players I've run across that really use him on the same level the Japanese do. I suppose it's only a matter of time before we catch up to where they are now, and footage of them playing certainly helps in that department.

Othello is definitely the best character in the game at the moment (1.0d), followed by Ryougen (who I'll talk about later). His main strengths are his poke range, speed, damage, priority and fast 50/50 traps. His combos are easy, he moves all over the place very quickly, he has awesome hitboxes which give him great pokes and anti-airs, and his damage is definitely a tad over the top. But what really sets him apart from the rest of the group is his ability to hit either high or low almost instantly, and the moves he uses to do this have a very long reach. His instant double jumps are also wonderful for meaty guessing games or cross-ups. It's easy for Othello to confirm off of these 50/50 traps or meaties into a Shift cancel, which lets him go into his B-n-B for absolutely retarded damage (6k), which only costs him the Shift and one stock of super.

Othello doesn't have any bad match-ups, either. One might think that he'd have a hard time dealing with rushdown due to the lack of a reversal, but alas he does not even need one to get through most match-ups easily. The odd thing is that every character can at least fight him decently, but they're just fighting a losing battle due to his overall advantages.

Ryougen is clearly the second best in the game at the moment (1.0d) and worlds apart from the rest of the cast. His standing A attack is something most characters wish they had; it's fast, big range for an A, and it's hitbox extends much further than it's hittable box. It also leads to his B-n-B which yields 3K+ very easily (stupid easy execution) that doesn't even cost meter. He's also the only character in the game that has a parry-like function -- but actually it would not be as strong if it actually were a parry. Instead, he has a counter move which is a directional plus attack input that has instant start-up and will parry almost all attacks; low, high, mid, and even some projectiles such as Maya's forward and ground portals, which is stupid good. If that wasn't enough, he also comes equipped with a catch move (like Geese's catch moves) which will grab overhead attacks and automatically counter with a move that sets up his high damage B-n-B combo. And to add insult to injury they decided to give him a forward-moving command throw that can also set up his B-n-B. In Freedom mode this command throw becomes a very fast moving command dash that can also ground cross, which is retardedly good for throw trapping and left/right 50/50 traps. And to top it all off he has an outstanding zone game with his air attacks, which have absurd range and decent priority.

Overall, Ryougen would probably be the best character in the game if not for Othello being able to beat Ryougen. Ryougen simply flat out destroys a lot of the lower tier characters and is simply overpowered in comparison to the mid tiers and he's able to beat Katze. This definitely seals his current position in the top of the list.

So far I've been sticking with Orju and Maya, but I recently took it upon myself to pick up Ryougen just so I could get the perspective of playing Ryougen, rather than getting stomped by him. And so far it's been like going from CvS2 Vice to CvS2 Sagat -- or 3S Ibuki to 3S Chun-Li -- or MvC2 Venom to MvC2 Sentinel (actually probably the best comparison) -- or GG Chipp to GG Dizzy. He simply has better tools, better damage output, and has to work a lot less hard than the rest of the cast to take wins.

So, my tier list has actually only changed slightly since I last posted it, but I'll post it again to reflect my new minor changes:

S: Othello, Ryougen
A: Katze
B: Maya
C: Orju, Rail
D: Delga
E: Aleksander, Siely
F: Efleet

On a side note, regarding my last post on throw trapping -- Katze definitely has the best throw traps and tick throws in the game.

I've also updated my YouTube with 12 new videos, most of which depicting just how overpowered Ryougen can be.


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