No one knows who you are at EVO.

Something that a dear friend of mine said recently was that “No one knows who I am at EVO”. This friend is very skilled in Melee, his name is known among a lot of people from the area he competes in, and can compete with people as skilled as he is. But no one knows who he is at EVO. No one knows who I am at EVO, and no one knows who you are at EVO as well. Unless you’re Armada, unless you’re Mango, unless you’re Leffen, unless you’ve got a real foundation, unless you’re competing in a place where everyone’s eyes (and I mean everyone’s) are going to be looking, which is Top 8, of tournaments everyone’s eyes will watch (again, everyone), no one really knows you. If your goal is to be the #1 best player in the world, if that’s who you think you are right now, why are you getting so sad when the #1 best player in the world doesn’t win? 

Because you’re not who you want to be yet. When did Armada become the best player in the world? When he won Genesis 2. Did he have more patience than anyone in the smash community has ever had? Yes. Did he force the opportunities to show how much he believed he was the best, start his own Genesis, because he wanted to be the best player in the world so desperately enough that he couldn’t wait any longer, and then make a complete fool out of himself if he had lost? Hell no. He waited. Key word, waited. Why do you think you can even be the best player in your region tomorrow? Why do you even need to be the best player in your region tomorrow? What the hell are you even doing today that’s going to make that a reality anyways? Are you practicing for tomorrow, or are you practicing just to “win” for today? It just doesn’t matter if you’re “winning” the practice today. It’s how patient you really are, if the things you want really matter.

Think about the legacy that takes place there, and think about the times that people remember when Armada or Mango lost. Everyone remembers those times. Everyone remembers when Armada lost to Hungrybox at EVO 2016. No one, and I mean literally no one, remembers the time you lost at Weekly Local #45. No one remembers when Armada lost at Weekly Local #45, and no one actually remembers when you lost in Losers-Quarter Finals in Pool #A200 at EVO 2017. The eyes aren’t there. If you want to be remembered, look at where you’re playing. Look at where you’re winning and look at where you’re losing. Are you losing when everyone in the smash community wants to be watching, to see who places 9th, 5th, 4th, 3rd, 1st at a super national? Or, are you losing at a place where no one really cares who’s going to get 129th?

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The single most important set of Melee I’ve played.

This is a set of mine that I played back when I lived in Temecula. To give some context, this was super early into me starting out in Smash. I was basically a total scrub, a total noob, and I had no idea what I was actually doing. I could only do really basic stuff that I had heard of, like wavedashing and moving left and right. I was trash, but I thought I was really really good. What’s important is that I cannot stress enough how important this set is to me. (For those unfamiliar, I play Marth).

And the last 30 seconds here:

(Shoutouts to Kony, who still competes to this day, and also went from being as bad as he was back then to where he is now, and Temecula Melee for giving me the opportunity back then to compete).

I really am obsessed with this set. It speaks for itself. I’m a total TOTAL scrub. White Marth, super cliche. Hilarious. Look how bad I am here! And I love it. I LOVE seeing how bad I am here, I LOVE comparing myself NOW to who I was back then, and comparing my future self to where I’m at today. I really do wish I had lost the set though. Because if I had lost this set, and I had the mindset that I have now, it would have instantly fueled me more to keep going instead of fuck around for the next 3 years. I think it all comes down to perspective though. Because I had won, I naively thought I was pretty dang good. But look, watch the set and you can clearly see that I wasn’t! If you’re just starting out in Melee, or if you feel you’ve been stuck in a rut, chances are you’re just as good at the game as I am here or something. I’ve been there. I WAS that guy. I WAS the cocky White Marth player who wanted to be the next coolest Marth on the planet. I was the Forward Smash spammer, the roller, you name an attribute of a noob, and I had it. I lived it. I get it. I understand it. I’ve been a complete noob at Melee longer than not being one. And the most important thing I’ve learned from being there for so long is that there is an “escape” or “way out” to “being better”. There really is. But it’s not “hope”. It’s not “I hope I…”. It’s not that. It’s going to be different for everyone, and for me it was eventually not being content with where I was in terms of skill.

This video is 100% PROOF, and I mean legit PROOF, that a complete nobody, can improve. And you can sure as HELL do it quicker than I did! Absolutely! The fact that I’m at where I am NOW is proof of this as well. I want this video to inspire at least ONE of you out there. Even just ONE. Just ONE person, to realize that you can go from absolute garbage to basically any higher level of skill if you’ve got the right kind of focus for it. For some people maybe it takes longer to find it, for some it won’t take as long. I’ve seen it happen way shorter for some than for how long it took me. Everyone has different DNA, so I can’t speak for everyone. You hear it time, and time, and time, and time again, from just about every great player, that everyone starts out somewhere. Again, it sounds cliche, but sometimes the cliche stuff is the most true.

So please, please stop using your “badness” at Melee as an excuse as to why you can’t improve, if you really care about improving!

No expert by any means.