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Interview with Ari "Floe" Weintraub Discussing Killer Instinct, Injustice, MLG Anaheim, and more

Eric The Scruffy

Premium
Premium Supporter
People who are complaining about the patch frequency in the game should keep in mind something Tom Brady pointed out on one of the various podcasts: often times things that are patched in the days following the release of a game are things that NRS already had planned out but were not implemented for one reason or another.
If you know how game development works you understand there's usually a certification process things like this have to go through and often the primary goal as the deadline to ship looms is not to ensure balance, but rather just to ensure that everything works and major obvious bugs that 90% of users would encounter are nonexistent.
In general I didn't really think the frequency of injustice patching was that bad. Some people almost make it sound like they were patching the game so quickly that you had one version of the game in the morning and another version in the evening every day.

I didn't just beat Justin Wong, I beat Justin Wong with Jade <3
.....where can I see this?
 

Slips

Feared by dragons. Desired by virgins.
Premium Supporter
Each fighting game caters to a different skill set. Some games cater to how fast a player can play. Some games cater to high execution. Some games cater to having good fundamentals. Some games cater to having the most knowledge of the game. Some games cater to having great spacing.

And some games cater to combinations of all the above and then some. I have a friend who is one of the best Guilty Gear players in the country. I was one of the best Tekken players in the country. When I played Guitly Gear, I got stomped. When he played Tekken, he got stomped. If we played a neutral game it usually depended on if it was high execution based or high fundamental based as to who did better. To me, it seems like we are mostly products of the first fighting game we REALLY took seriously and went all in hardcore.

There are occasional freaks like Justin and Chris G. To them you just gotta tip your had and acknowledge they have a unique talent. And for the record, Chris G easily was one of the quickest...if not the quickest to pick up Injustice and just start playing at a high level. I've witnessed his freakish talent first-hand, and it was pretty awesome to watch.
 
It's hard to do with the type of games they like to make. The target is "out of control, over the top, crazy/insane". It does well for their target audience because that's what MK was based on in the first place.

However, there are so many variables in a game like that that it's hard to get everything right and iron them all out 'in the lab'. There's just too much going on, and things are too crazy. Plus you're talking about a brand new game -- it's not like SF2/Super/Turbo ended up perfectly balanced when it came out. The formula has been refined over years.

If they stick with the Injustice core and just improve on it heading into new games, it'll be a little easier to balance going forward. But a new experimental game with new constraints, moves, movement, play styles, type of blocking etc. is extremely hard to nail on the first shot.
true, but either way, they have to find a way to patch their games differently so characters who have no business getting nerfed (ermac, ares, etc.) can stay how they are and thus causing the game's balance to be more favorable. How they patch things, our community will just find the next best thing to attack and get nerfed. I really hope MK10 isn't like this, but it is bound to happen.
 

CrimsonShadow

Administrator and Community Engineer
Administrator
true, but either way, they have to find a way to patch their games differently so characters who have no business getting nerfed (ermac, ares, etc.) can stay how they are and thus causing the game's balance to be more favorable. How they patch things, our community will just find the next best thing to attack and get nerfed. I really hope MK10 isn't like this, but it is bound to happen.
Can you really say they did a bad job patching injustice though? Most of the things that were fixed, were things that needed to be fixed. You can always point out something in every game that's questionable (including in versions of SF) but 90% of the IGAU changes have helped and the game is much stronger now because of it.
 
Can you really say they did a bad job patching injustice though? Most of the things that were fixed, were things that needed to be fixed. You can always point out something in every game that's questionable (including in versions of SF) but 90% of the IGAU changes have helped and the game is much stronger now because of it.
I can say some bad patching they did:
*DS (completely exaggerated how good he was and made him seem top 3 or something, was not the case but hey he is still good)
*MMH( got buffed in the last patch...........)
*Superman (first time he got patched his f2 was still quite the same and he could still do his thing essentially)
*Scorpion (didn't mind the nerf, but they nerfed him to the ground and now he is just meh)
*Ares (why would they nerf his reset when he already has trouble landing big damage on characters that give him trouble, reminds me of when they nerfed sub zero's ground freeze reset in mk9)
*Green Arrow ( correct me if i'm wrong, but they nerfed some of his strings and what not, dnt know why though)
that is just a few changes that have happened that just dnt cut it, I could pull more out but the point i'm making is that we seriously need to consider what characters we want nerfed because as seen by mk9, (Kabal, Kenshi, Sonya, etc. were left in the clear after NRS stopped doing patches and that was that).
 

CrimsonShadow

Administrator and Community Engineer
Administrator
I can say some bad patching they did:
*DS (completely exaggerated how good he was and made him seem top 3 or something, was not the case but hey he is still good)
*MMH( got buffed in the last patch...........)
*Superman (first time he got patched his f2 was still quite the same and he could still do his thing essentially)
*Scorpion (didn't mind the nerf, but they nerfed him to the ground and now he is just meh)
*Ares (why would they nerf his reset when he already has trouble landing big damage on characters that give him trouble, reminds me of when they nerfed sub zero's ground freeze reset in mk9)
*Green Arrow ( correct me if i'm wrong, but they nerfed some of his strings and what not, dnt know why though)
that is just a few changes that have happened that just dnt cut it, I could pull more out but the point i'm making is that we seriously need to consider what characters we want nerfed because as seen by mk9, (Kabal, Kenshi, Sonya, etc. were left in the clear after NRS stopped doing patches and that was that).
Yeah, but we can also take SF4 and for each version talk about characters that were hit too hard, characters that weren't buffed enough, the fact that there are still some low tier/struggling characters after 3 rounds of major balance adjustments etc.

The moral of the story is, not every balance adjustment will be perfect, no matter what game it is. It's easy to pick out the couple of things you don't like when the other 90% were actually perfectly valid/fine.
 
Yeah, but we can also take SF4 and for each version talk about characters that were hit too hard, characters that weren't buffed enough, the fact that there are still some low tier/struggling characters after 3 rounds of major balance adjustments etc.

The moral of the story is, not every balance adjustment will be perfect, no matter what game it is. It's easy to pick out the couple of things you don't like when the other 90% were actually perfectly valid/fine.
I mean it is all speculation at the end of it all, some are more fine with what patches brought while others aren't that content with it. I just feel it'd help NRS games out a lot if they would just implement a huge patch that could last a year and only do hotfixes for glitches/ infinites that weren't intended.
 
also to anyone saying capcom has high execution barriers




lern2plink
I don't own an arcade stick.

The easy answer would be universal 2 or 3 frame input buffer.

The burden shouldn't be put on the player: "hey, adapt to our crappy controls", "buy an arcade stick", "learn to plink", "play a character that doesn't rely on difficult combos"

Its the developers job to do that. We hold NRS accountable for input bugs, yet Capcom gets away with "oh, but u need 1 frame links cuz depth"
 

coolwhip

Noob
I dont think number of patches was the problem, more the frequency of patches. NRS does all of its patches in 6 months or so, meaning there is a new patch every one or two months. SF usually doesnt get "patched" until a year or two after the last. This gives people time to explore the newly patched versions before another patch hits.
Different games though. Imagine if the first version of Injustice was allowed to live for 2 years...or the first version of MK for that matter (Cyrax: d4, command grab, ggs).
 

coolwhip

Noob
Each fighting game caters to a different skill set. Some games cater to how fast a player can play. Some games cater to high execution. Some games cater to having good fundamentals. Some games cater to having the most knowledge of the game. Some games cater to having great spacing.

And some games cater to combinations of all the above and then some. I have a friend who is one of the best Guilty Gear players in the country. I was one of the best Tekken players in the country. When I played Guitly Gear, I got stomped. When he played Tekken, he got stomped. If we played a neutral game it usually depended on if it was high execution based or high fundamental based as to who did better. To me, it seems like we are mostly products of the first fighting game we REALLY took seriously and went all in hardcore.

There are occasional freaks like Justin and Chris G. To them you just gotta tip your had and acknowledge they have a unique talent. And for the record, Chris G easily was one of the quickest...if not the quickest to pick up Injustice and just start playing at a high level. I've witnessed his freakish talent first-hand, and it was pretty awesome to watch.
I liked this post before reading it.
 

xInfra Deadx

The laws of the universe mean nothing.
*Green Arrow ( correct me if i'm wrong, but they nerfed some of his strings and what not, dnt know why though)
that is just a few changes that have happened that just dnt cut it, I could pull more out but the point i'm making is that we seriously need to consider what characters we want nerfed because as seen by mk9, (Kabal, Kenshi, Sonya, etc. were left in the clear after NRS stopped doing patches and that was that).
The reason why GA's strings got nerfed is the huge cancel advantage led to guaranteed supers on block. B2,3 had its block advantage shortened up to +3 from +15.
 
The reason why GA's strings got nerfed is the huge cancel advantage led to guaranteed supers on block. B2,3 had its block advantage shortened up to +3 from +15.
Doesnt change the fact that he could benefit from that. Just like Ares could benefit from his old reset. You have to look at what nerfs do in the long run to a character. If u just look at the here and now, u are not looking at how a nerf affected a character that is just decent at best. (For example of course sub zero and ermac getting nerf hurt em bad in the long run).
 

RM Jonnitti

Hot Dog
I don't own an arcade stick.

The easy answer would be universal 2 or 3 frame input buffer.

The burden shouldn't be put on the player: "hey, adapt to our crappy controls", "buy an arcade stick", "learn to plink", "play a character that doesn't rely on difficult combos"

Its the developers job to do that. We hold NRS accountable for input bugs, yet Capcom gets away with "oh, but u need 1 frame links cuz depth"
you're honestly (soap bar in my mouth). the depth of the game has nothing to do with its execution and nobody ever said it did. having link does open a lot of doors for combos to happen though, so yeah the combo system does have more depth because not everything has to be a juggle
 
you're honestly (soap bar in my mouth). the depth of the game has nothing to do with its execution and nobody ever said it did. having link does open a lot of doors for combos to happen though, so yeah the combo system does have more depth because not everything has to be a juggle
Yeah, but you can still have a link system with 3 frame input buffer. There's zero reason to not have it.

3 frame input buffer. It would fix everything. Why SFIV players are so against it only prove the point- the game uses execution as a barrier to keep would-be good players from learning the game's meta and strategy.

You can't hit confirm if you are unsure you're going to make a link. What's the point of using s.mp, cr.lp, cr.lp to hit confirm into a Super, if you can't even be sure the last cr.lp will successfully hit so your unsafe ultra won't be blocked?

Things like punishes- when you can't do links, your punishes hurt waaaaay less. It takes away the risk/reward factor that is present at high level play.

QCF x 2 : makes it extremely hard to cancel quick moves into this successfully. In this case, it's not a link where you need to get the time right, it's being able to do all the inputs in time. It's ridiculously hard to do this on a regular pad, especially if you're trying to cancel El Fuerte's cr.Lk into his super.

So yeah: all these are things you can't access if you can't get around the game's huge execution. It has alot to do with SFIV's image as a high execution game that is superior to others. You can't even START to get into the deep meta-game and strategy until you either get an arcade stick, or spend a month learning links.
 

RM Jonnitti

Hot Dog
Yeah, but you can still have a link system with 3 frame input buffer. There's zero reason to not have it.

3 frame input buffer. It would fix everything. Why SFIV players are so against it only prove the point- the game uses execution as a barrier to keep would-be good players from learning the game's meta and strategy.

You can't hit confirm if you are unsure you're going to make a link. What's the point of using s.mp, cr.lp, cr.lp to hit confirm into a Super, if you can't even be sure the last cr.lp will successfully hit so your unsafe ultra won't be blocked?

Things like punishes- when you can't do links, your punishes hurt waaaaay less. It takes away the risk/reward factor that is present at high level play.

QCF x 2 : makes it extremely hard to cancel quick moves into this successfully. In this case, it's not a link where you need to get the time right, it's being able to do all the inputs in time. It's ridiculously hard to do this on a regular pad, especially if you're trying to cancel El Fuerte's cr.Lk into his super.

So yeah: all these are things you can't access if you can't get around the game's huge execution. It has alot to do with SFIV's image as a high execution game that is superior to others. You can't even START to get into the deep meta-game and strategy until you either get an arcade stick, or spend a month learning links.
dude it really just sounds like you arent a fan of any sort of execution learning urve. its really not that high and within a few hours you should be getting your links down. there are PLENTY of successful players who use pad. you should also be able to plink on pad by sliding if im not mistaken
 
dude it really just sounds like you arent a fan of any sort of execution learning urve. its really not that high and within a few hours you should be getting your links down. there are PLENTY of successful players who use pad. you should also be able to plink on pad by sliding if im not mistaken
Im not a fan of an unnecessary execution learning curve. It shouldn't lock casuals like myself out from enjoying the rest of the game.

Plinking turns 1 frame links into 2 frame links. So it only makes me wonder even more why they just don't just allow input buffer at the last frame of any move to give all links 1 additional frame of leniency.

Plinking is possible, but extremely difficult on pad. Sliding fast enough is hard. You end up having to angle your thumb slightly, and press down so it hits one right after the other. And there's no way they can be learned in an hour. Ive been playing AE for 6 months, and I get Roses 1-framers about 50 percent of the time.
 

Zoidberg747

My blades will find your heart
Im not a fan of an unnecessary execution learning curve. It shouldn't lock casuals like myself out from enjoying the rest of the game.

Plinking turns 1 frame links into 2 frame links. So it only makes me wonder even more why they just don't just allow input buffer at the last frame of any move to give all links 1 additional frame of leniency.

Plinking is possible, but extremely difficult on pad. Sliding fast enough is hard. You end up having to angle your thumb slightly, and press down so it hits one right after the other. And there's no way they can be learned in an hour. Ive been playing AE for 6 months, and I get Roses 1-framers about 50 percent of the time.
Just play a character that doesnt require high execution. You can get by without 1 frame links if you have good enough fundamentals.
 
Just play a character that doesnt require high execution. You can get by without 1 frame links if you have good enough fundamentals.
This is kinda my issue. Execution is literally cutting off a chunk of the game by making certain characters unviable for me.

Cr. Lk, cr. Mp.

I mean, thats such a small thing to stand between me and a perfectly playable character. Maybe I'll have it down in another month, but it is still such an unnecessary barrier.
 
Basically, Mr. Sirlin sums up how I feel:

http://www.sirlin.net/blog/2012/7/16/execution-in-fighting-games.html

"Making a game such that bread-and-butter combos require 1-frame linking is another great example of reducing the importance of strategy. In a recent stream, Chen himself said that in SF4, if you can't do Sakura's 1-frame link combo, you shouldn't be playing Sakura. I agree! That goes to show how strongly execution is favored over correct decision making / strategy in the case of SF4 Sakura.


We should really be striving to reduce execution requirements as much as possible while keeping the nature of the game intact.
That is, making all dragon punches a single button press would reduce execution, but it would also actually ruin a bunch of strategy stuff by making them too reactive and not predictive enough, so we shouldn't do that. That's not a case where reducing execution helps, so I'm not talking about things like that. I am talking about sequences or moves that are hard apart from any strategic consideration. Like Sakura having 1-frame links as a critical thing, instead of being a character anyone could play. (You don't even need to change the power level of the character or reduce any strategy here, it's just a matter of being more inclusive as to how many players get to participate in that strategy.)

I know there's a lot of execution fetishism going around, and that's unfortunate for a genre that many would like to point to as a strategy genre that happens to have a dexterity requirement to play."

If it isn't execution that is making Capcom players say they're better, than I'd like to see people push for getting rid of absurd execution in Street Fighter, and see if that claim still holds when more players are able to easily jump into their game.
 
Basically, Mr. Sirlin sums up how I feel:

http://www.sirlin.net/blog/2012/7/16/execution-in-fighting-games.html

"Making a game such that bread-and-butter combos require 1-frame linking is another great example of reducing the importance of strategy. In a recent stream, Chen himself said that in SF4, if you can't do Sakura's 1-frame link combo, you shouldn't be playing Sakura. I agree! That goes to show how strongly execution is favored over correct decision making / strategy in the case of SF4 Sakura.

We should really be striving to reduce execution requirements as much as possible while keeping the nature of the game intact.
That is, making all dragon punches a single button press would reduce execution, but it would also actually ruin a bunch of strategy stuff by making them too reactive and not predictive enough, so we shouldn't do that. That's not a case where reducing execution helps, so I'm not talking about things like that. I am talking about sequences or moves that are hard apart from any strategic consideration. Like Sakura having 1-frame links as a critical thing, instead of being a character anyone could play. (You don't even need to change the power level of the character or reduce any strategy here, it's just a matter of being more inclusive as to how many players get to participate in that strategy.)

I know there's a lot of execution fetishism going around, and that's unfortunate for a genre that many would like to point to as a strategy genre that happens to have a dexterity requirement to play."

If it isn't execution that is making Capcom players say they're better, than I'd like to see people push for getting rid of absurd execution in Street Fighter, and see if that claim still holds when more players are able to easily jump into their game.

This has kind of been my point. When I say the SF is harder than NRS games it's somewhat of an over generalization, but what I mean is that it's more difficult to learn in a lot of ways because the execution is so much more specific. By in large in NRS games you just dial a combo and call it a day. All of that said, that's not a bad thing! It makes the game more accessible which is great. Part of what makes KI so great is that the Combo system is so simple, which makes it easier for new players to pick it up and jump into more of the strategy and mind games. I don't think it's a sign of a good game when you need to spend hours in training just practicing execution before you can really start to even play the game.
 

Juggs

Lose without excuses
Lead Moderator
Lol, did people not read the interview, he said overall Capcom players are better players which is true.

I haven't seen a single NRS player succeed in other FGs beside Jr.

If Capcom can play games they "don't like" (NRS games), than NRS players can play games they don't like either, so don't say you don't play you don't play because you don't like it, it's just harder to compete in Capcom games.
What new Capcom game has come out that hasn't been around for over a decade? Most Capcom fighting game are incredibly similar, or are sequels from the same game so the same fundamentals are required.

Injustice was a game that was legitimately new. The bullshit of "MK players had an advantage going in" is just that, bullshit. And even if that WAS true, why would that still be true a year later? Injustice was the newest fighting game IP that isn't like MK or Capcom games but more of a combo with its own flavor. And is it nothing but Capcom players dominating Injustice? Of course not, just like Capcom players didn't dominate in MK9.

That's not to say Capcom players can't dominate in NRS games. But the same can be said for NRS players in Capcom games. It's not impossible, but it's not probable. People seem to think that since it's a fighting game, that's all that matters. If you're good at this fighting game, obviously you're good at that fighting game too, or hell all of them for that matter. And that's just not true when the games are fundamentally different from one another. It's even true within NRS games. There's very little consistency between games, that's why all the top oldschool MK players aren't all the top newschool MK players. A game like UMK3 is vastly different than MK9, so much so that the fundamentals are completely different... AND IT'S THE SAME DAMN IP!

F.Champ said before Injustice even came out that we'd see who the better players were. That Injustice was a completely new IP, and that this would really be the test for all communities on who is better. But I guess since Injustice isn't a carbon copy of Street Fighter or Marvel, that his comments are null and void and he didn't really mean it. Hmm, seems legit to me.