Before we get started today, I want to congratulate my teammates who had such an impressive showing at Defend the North 2015 this past weekend. Well done, boys... you did both your brothers-in-arms & your city very proud. Moving on, October has been an audacious month. After the jump, I'll elaborate further...
I don't know about anyone else, nor do I speak for anyone else, but I happen to believe in the concept of karmic balance. It's called the "middle path of enlightenment" for a reason, right? No one can normally ever be all good or all evil, it's just common sense. Every single day, we do what we can to maintain all of our own personal levels of good & evil. We try to be the hero, but also recognize that assuming the role of villain has its place. That being said, I feel that the same standard can (and should) be applied to the FGC at large. Collectively, we are a mass portrait of a slice of society and should also concern ourselves with trying to help keep that balance. Furthermore, all things considered, we should strive towards the positive. While that is, by & large, always the goal... we've been stumbling along the way. I'd like to address a few events of the closing month that I feel are worth highlighting.
Let's get some bad news out of the way first. I'm sure most of you are aware that DOA Xtreme 3 is currently in the works. Again, speaking only for myself, I can't help but feel as though this is a depressing step back for the series as a whole. One would assume that parting ways with the ever insufferable Itagaki & partnering with Koei would push things in the right direction... and, to be blunt, it has. Their partnership has been mutually beneficial. While the DOA community is (shockingly) toxic, the game itself has become solid. Yes, they implement sensualized outfits & poses during gameplay, but it isn't the focus. With the advent of women becoming more & more involved with gaming -AND- the 'hair trigger' everyone's common sensibilities have had in this year alone, one would assume that releasing a title that not only focuses almost primarily/singularly on the women's appearance, but actually makes it noted focus of a game, would be in somewhat poor tastes. And yes, I'm totally aware that sex sells... but it's one thing for it to be part of the advertising and something entirely different when it alone is the product.
On a brighter (and more personal) note, I am proud to announce that the recent fundraiser KPB has been supporting to bring over Japan's own SIG to compete at this year's NEC reached its goal of $1,200. With the help of the SG community as a whole, they banded together to make something incredible happen. To put this into some perspective, SIG's coming to Valley Forge in December wasn't done on the whim of a major sponsor or anything like that. The magnitude of this accomplishment & its success rests squarely on the shoulders of a community that wants nothing more than the best available competition. They didn't complain about not getting a "decent enough" pot bonus, nor did they bat an eyelash about streaming/stage placement. Just like the fundraiser, all of those things have come to pass this year organically. No petitions, no boycotts, no nothing... they've made their tournament presence known/felt all throughout 2015 across the country because, as Abraham Erskine once said: "A weak man knows the value of strength." I went on record earlier this year to say that I would do whatever was in my power to help Skullgirls get the shine it I feel it deserves and with SIG now confirmed for NEC 16, I can rest easy knowing that I kept my word.
Momentarily swinging the pendulum back into the negative, we've come to what I feel is a frightening low point for the FGC as a whole. It's no secret that Filipino Champ has made his opinions of Kane Blueriver painfully obvious and VERY public. I honestly don't care about whether the basis of his acidic hatred of Kane is justified or not because, at the end of the day, Kane won EVO 2015. It's as simple as that. Now if you want to be mad about how Kane carries himself as a champion, that's okay... but you have to acknowledge that he's the champion. The FGC practically worships the phrase "hold that L" until, apparently, it applies to them. That, my friend, is called hypocrisy. The fact that Champ has taken his angst to such a ludicrous extent, which includes a borderline slanderous hashtag campaign, is kind of saddening to me. Something that the FGC is salivating over is the prospect that we might break into that lucrative eSports category soon. I want to make something perfectly clear to anyone reading this piece: The FGC is to the competitive gaming industry as the "Take a Penny/Leave a Penny" dish is to a local deli. Whenever you find yourself bemoaning that fact, remember Champ's tantrum and how it makes the community look... that's why we can't have nice things.
Thankfully, though, there are moments -- few & far between -- that actually restore your faith in the people. At the very beginning of this column, I made mention of Defend the North. If you were in attendance over the weekend, you may have noticed someone missing. That someone was Yipes. For those who may still be unaware, Yipes had to skip DTN this year due to injury. You see, Yipes got hurt because he tried to save someone's life. A few days back, a commuter fell onto the subway tracks and Yipes, without much of a second thought, did what he could to help rescue them. In the process, he ended up falling onto the tracks himself, injuring his leg. As if by divine intervention, the oncoming train's conductor managed to see the two on the tracks and was able to decelerate in time. You have to appreciate moments like that if for no other reason that it proves we're all in this together. Young, old, rich, poor, gamer or not... we're all we have & we need to have each other's backs when things get serious.
Until next time... keep fighting the good fight, my friends.