It's been a couple weeks since CEO now, but I still want to take the time to get my thoughts down about it. I still want to post shield pressure stuff and vs. falco stuff, so both of those will probably happen within a week or so. For now though, CEO!
So I got there a few days early, which allowed me to attend the Tuesday local, as well as getting friendlies throughout the week with various players. The local went decently for me, but not great: I played a bunch of randoms until Eikelmann, beat him by pretty large margins, then lost to wizzy 2-1 and played pretty mediocre. I went to losers, played pretty mediocrely vs captain crunch and pengie...just couldn't play how I do in friendlies. I went up against gahtzu next and 3-1'd him, I think with two 3 stocks? The game he won he 3 stocked me though, and it got me featured in his 90 second combo video LOL: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8s9ox6Si6Tc
I played a bit better but it was still not great (though I have learned to not let this negatively affect me). I come up on wizzy next, and I beat him 3-2. I'm glad I beat him, but I know I can play far, far better. I sorta rushed through all that to get to talking about loser's finals with hbox. God I was *sooooooooooo* motivated after losing to him 3-0. I never want to lose to hungrybox again, period. Every game we played was totally in my grasp, then I would misjudge a situation, or have a small mental lapse and just die...that matchup is something I need to brainstorm more. I've watched plup play it, and honestly there's a lot of stuff he does that works vs hbox that I don't want to do. Soft actually does a ton of sick stuff that hbox doesn't do and it changes the matchup drastically. Namely, every single tilt and smash attack is punishable on shield by REST. Ftilt, dtilt, and dsmash are all punishable by WD rest and it's actually pretty insane. Plup plays a game where he seems to go either full defense, or full offense (when he has an advantage) and pressure hbox, but so much of that pressure comes from potentially unsafe things. Not to say that he's not amazing at the matchup, beating hbox consistently now, but still. I've thought so much about it, but I need to keep working on it; I need a way to keep pressure on puff without resorting to doing unsafe things on her shield. I'm confident sheik wins, but executing it is definitely non trivial...especially if I want to win in a way that I can be happy about (i.e. not by dsmashing puff's shield).
Moving on, I stayed with harriet and got to play him, plup, abate, and tai in decently extended sessions. Playing harriet was lots of fun, and I like to think all our practice helped him beat chillin in winners pretty convincingly, but he probably coulda done that anyway to be honest. Playing plup went about as expected: pretty even, and our games look a lot different than most people's games. We have a fairly similar approach to the game at a fundamental level, and anytime I get to play him I feel like I can *actually* play melee for once. Playing tai was also super fun since I haven't seen/played that guy in forever; he'd improved a lot, and he did a lot of both good and creative things. That said, I had been working a lot on marth vs. sheik (ever since losing to the moon) and I think it really showed in how our games went. I mostly played falcon against abate and that honestly was fairly easy; falcon is just sooooooo easy to play vs. luigi. Abate is definitely really good, but I'm starting to realize more and more that all the luigi players are far too used to doing extremely punishable things that work vs most people. When I played blea later with falcon it went pretty much the same; they're both amazing players, but it is too easy to just rely on CC'ing their jabs and unsafe nairs, or attacking out of shield between double aerials. Like if luigi does a rising fair/dair/bair on my shield, as falcon I just nair OoS before the second aerial comes out and potentially death combo him, its great. I'd like to see more players keep the good luigi players honest, and see how it helps them improve!
CEO itself also went pretty mediocre for me, but again, it happens. I played a terrible set with milkman in winners semi's of our pool...he just played so badly, and I know he's way better than that. I go to play s2j on stream, I'm in control the entire first game, but I just don't close out any of the edgeguards and I end up suiciding at literally 0% and lose a last stock last hit game. I proceed to play terribly game 2, likely as a result of what happened game 1, and he honestly just dominates me. He definitely deserved to beat me, but I would like to play him again without being a total buster; I think it's pretty unlikely that I'll lose unless he plays notably better. I play milkman in the runback in loser's finals, and he plays far better which I was happy about; we had a dead even game 1 that he probably should have won, but I stepped it up game 2 and won very solidly. First round of bracket (loser's, since I lost in pools and its fgc style) I fight porkchops. Ever since I played zhu, even though I beat him, I worked a lot on cleaning up my vs. falco game; I had the right idea, but there were some rough spots. I'm pretty happy with 3 and 2 stocking porkchops, although its definitely a matchup he's not very familiar with, I definitely feel like I played it cleanly. I played wizzy afterwards, and lost 2-0 in last stock games. Game 2 was a little unfortunate, since SFAT got up from the setup next to me and blocked the screen long enough for me to get stomped at 0 (this led to a death combo, since its wizzy). I wasn't really salty, since I didn't particularly feel like I deserved to win anyway.
Outside of actual tournament matches, I did a 0 dollar MM with laudandus (we just agreed to play seriously) and won pretty solidly with chaingrabs. I did real MMs with darkrain (3-0 win), gahtzu (3-1 win), arc (3-0 and 3-2 wins), and colbol (3-1 win). I also played arc in about an hour of friendlies, and as I said with playing tai, my work vs marth definitely showed. Fuck marth though, that matchup is even or marth's favor LOL. Anyway, also got to play $mike (definite improvement from last time, dude is mad good) and frootloop(rusty tucan, bring him back to form!) in a decent number of friendlies which went well.
The last set of games I want to talk about is a friendly set I played with armada, which I was pretty happy about. I sat down to play him, and beat him in peach sheik in a last hit match on dreamland. Peach is my probably my worst matchup (see me 3 stocking macd, then getting dsmashed for 2 games straight Kappa) so I was actually really happy that I was able to play well (I don't care that much about the actual win, just that I played the matchup decently). It was just supposed to be a single game, but it turned into a set; he beat me in game 2 on FD which also went to last stock lsat hit. Game 3 he switched to fox and we got dreamland, though I'm not sure if it's because he got tired of peach vs. sheik or just because he wanted to try out his fox. I took the first 2 stocks without gimps, taking only 6%, and ended up winning the game pretty solidly (JV 2, though I had the JV 3 and was a buster on the edgeguard and got shined lmao). He immediately goes back to peach, and I guess we play a 3/5 now? He wins a last stock last hit game on yoshi's game 4, and then wins game 5 on battlefield, last stock and around 50% on him (not quite last hit, but still close). It was just a friendly set, but it still gives me confidence that if I can at least do decently in my worst matchup vs. armada, then I really just need to keep focusing on my tournament mentality and maintaining composure and everything else will work out from there.
Now it's time for evo, where I'll do the best I can, and move on from there! I'm super excited ^__^