Tuesday, May 11, 2010

More Saitama Quals and More New Teammates

When I went to Mikado Friday night, I had only one teammate setup for both Saturday (ASA Potemkin) and Sunday (Kunihiro). Both of them could only go one day, so I needed to find someone to fill the gap.

After playing for a bit, Nanase showed up and started talking to me. I asked him earlier in the week if he could team with me but he said he had plans. I told him I was still looking for one more person. He thought about it a bit and then said he would team with me for Saturday after all! So, now I just needed one more person for Sunday.

I played this one PO player a bunch of times. He was really good and was beating me quite a bit. After a few more games I played him again and won 3 in a row on him. After that, he suddenly came over to me and asked me in English where I was from. Then I started talking with him in Japanese for a bit about various things. I asked him if he ever enters tougeki tournaments and he said he doesnt because he doesnt really have any friends that play GG and wants to find teammates. Perfect! So I asked him if he wanted to join my team for Sunday and he said he would love to. His name is Akinori, and he goes by the player name "Heavenly" because heavenly pot buster is his favorite move in the game lol. He says he pretty much always has weekends off of work so he said he is pretty much willing to team with me every time, which is very good. In addition, hes also into a lot of awsome metal bands that I like as well, especially Dream Theater and Sonata Arctica. He also wants to study English more so I told him I would try to talk with him in English so that he could practice. His English is pretty decent anyway. Also, he says hes into white girls.

We played for a few more games and stayed till closing. After that, he said he had no plans and I told him I was going to go drinking at Current so he said he wanted to come along. I took him there and he really liked the place. Rob, the ex JET guy who works for Square was also there and we talked for a bit. Also, Mai was there and was telling me how her, Yoshie, and Ayami would be working at some girls bar at design festa next weekend and invited me to come see them. I told her maybe, but chances are I wont be going since theres more quals next weekend heh. I tried to take it a bit easy on the drinking today though because my ulcer is still in not so good condition right now. Also, I wanted to get a good amount of sleep for tomorrow's tournament so I left Current at around 3 am. I went to the manga kissa, and Akinori went too cuz he was killing time waiting for the first train and I guess he didnt wanna drink there alone or whatever so he just went there to read manga. I went to sleep.

I woke up the next day and Akinori left me a note saying thanks for showing him the bar and inviting him on my team for Sunday.

I headed to Kawagoe in Saitama where today's tournament would be held. This one was bigger than the last one and had 16 teams enter. They had 3 cabinets there too so I got a good amount of casuals in before the tournament. I talked with ASA for a bit. He just got a new job but said he would try to enter quals when he has the time.

Udei was there and i asked him who won the other qualfiers on Mon, Tue, and Wed of last week since I didnt go. He said that his team won on Monday (Udei, Hase, a Robo-Ky I dont know) and he was just there to watch, so I congratulated him. Tuesdays tournament was won by Kuni's team (Kuni, footies Ky, pink May), and Wednesdays tournament was won by Ko1, Haken, Ka2.

I was surprised that FAB/Inoue/Machaboo didnt win any of those. They were at this one ready to play again though. There were lots of good teams and players at this tournament. You can see the full signup sheets for all teams here and here. (you can enlarge it to read the names better if you click on the larger size option. Also, if you cant read Japanese I can translate names if you ask but im too lazy to just do all of them)

For our first match, we had to play against Ain's team. The team was Ain(KY)/Karisuma(FA)/Kojirou(TE). Ain is the guy who looks like a Japanese version of the Street Fighter player, Floe.

First was Nanase vs Ain. Ain beat Nanse, killing him with an IK in the 3rd round after 3 knockdowns in moroha mode.

Next ASA beat Ain in a close fight. Then ASA lost Karisuma's Faust. I went next and beat both Kurisama and Koirou's TE for the win!

For our next match, we had to play the same team I lost to last week again, Machaboo/FAB/Inoue. Once again, they put Machaboo first. I went first this time and lost to Machaboo but I did much better against him than I did last week and it was pretty close and went down to the 3rd round. Then Nanase lost to him too. Then, ASA just BEASTED and he beat Machaboo's TE, then he beat FAB in a PO mirror match! Finally he had to play Inoue's HOS. He took it to the very last round and was ONE HIT AWAY from beating Inoue but he got hit first and lost...

It was so close and ASA really played well. Too bad.

As for the rest of the tournament, FAB's team played against Domi's team and beat them. It went like this...

FAB beats Domi (AN)
FAB beats JT (MI)
FAB loses to Basara (aka Ogiwara) (SL)
Machaboo loses to Basara
Inoue beats Basara for the win

Also, Maruken OCVed Osaka B's team (Osaka B (FA), Ruka (AB), SHO (MA))

The finals were Maruken's team (Maruken (BA)/TEN (IN)/ Satou (JO))
vs
Inoue/FAB/Machaboo

It went down like this...

Machaboo beats Satou
Ten beats Machaboo
Inoue beats TEN
Maruken beats Inoue
Maruken beats FAB

So, Maruken's team won. Too bad for Machaboo's team once again. Maybe I will get a 3rd crack at beating them heh.

After the tournament, I thanked my team and they said they both would be willing to team up again sometime in the future at an unspecified time.

I went back to Mikado and played casuals till about 8:30. From there, I agreed to meet up with Emmet at an Izakaya near Current. I wasnt planning on really drinking tonight and couldnt stay out late but I hadnt eaten dinner yet so I figured I would go for some food. He was meeting some girls there that he met a long time ago at an international party. I drank with the girls and him and ended up having a few beers. We left there at around 11 and now that I had a few beers in me, I felt like having more. The girls wanted to go to Roppongi but Emmet was low on cash so he didnt go with them, so I went with him to Current.

SPG Chris was there and we drank with him at the bar mostly. I had a couple more drinks but I only stayed till about 1:30 cuz I had to get up early tomorrow. Tomorrow's tournament was a bit far and had an early registration time of 10 am with a 16 team limit.

Instead of going to my usual cheap manga kissa (which is kinda ghetto) I found a good Moopa manga kissa that I never noticed before right across from Sportsland. They had mat rooms avaliable and it was only like 1700 yen for 8 hours which is a good price, so I slept there and stayed for like 7 hours. I think sleeping on my stomach laying down is better for my ulcer so I am going to try to do this as much as possable. Laying on my back causes lots of stomach acid to go up into my esophagus while im sleeping (espessially after drinking all night) so hopefully this strategy will help me out. Only problem is its hard to get those nice mat rooms.

Anyway, I woke up the next day and headed to Hanuki station, which I have never heard of and was on some weird private train line from Omiya called New Shuttle. I got to the station and took a bus cuz the game center was a bit far. After getting off the bus, the map I printed was wrong so I had to ask some random guy on the street where the place was. He said the map was wrong but since it had an address on the sheet he knew where it was so he pointed me in the right direction and I found it after that.

The arcade, Game Moai, was pretty nice. They had 2 cabs going. A few players were there already like Osaka B's team. I got a win streak of like 10 wins at first which was nice. This arcade used tokens instead of regular money which is something extremely rare in Japan. It was 2 credits for 1 token which costs 100 yen but you get more tokens the more money you put into the token machine at once (like 1000 yen gets you 14 tokens). I got there at around 11 am but there was only like 4 teams signed up at that time. I figured it wouldnt fill up that fast.

Akinori and Kunihiro both had trouble finding the place too but both of them eventually made it.

There ended up being a total of 10 teams signed up. You can see the whole signup sheet here.
Surprisingly enough, FAB's team did not come today! I guess they had to work or something.

Before the tournament started, I asked one of the staff members if I could buy a start button off of them because the one on my stick at home broke. They were nice enough to just give me it for free so I got a brand new free start button! If you ever need some parts and you are in Japan, just ask an arcade and they might hook you up!

Also, the guy who was running the tournament today was a Slayer player that knows Rod (Honnou)! He met me before and recognized me, though I forgot his name.

Anyway, the tournament started and we got a bye first round.

Our first match was vs the team of 2HS (JO) / 5k (MI) / 2BC天地 (SO)

Kunihiro loses to SO
Akinori beats SO
Akinori loses to MI
I beat MI and JO for the win!

Up next, we had to fight a team of ZA/IN/DI

I was playing the IN and DI in casuals a lot before the tournament and beating them almost every time. The ZA was giving me trouble though. I didnt know who he was cuz their names on the signup sheet were weird fake names. They are the 3rd team listed on the signup sheet (ちょなんざん。com).

First, Akinori lost to DI
then I went and I beat DI
Then, I lost to the ZA player
Finally, Kunihiro also lost to the ZA.

(this was already the semi finals)

I checked afterwords and it turns out the ZA was Chonari, the Zappa who got 2nd place at SBO last year and lost to N-男 in the grand finals after almost reverse OCVing his team. I guess that explains why he gave me trouble heh... I feel I could have played better against him though. I wasnt really happy with my performance on that one. I let the dog rough me up too much and wasnt being patient enough.

Anyway, both Osaka B's team and Ain's team lost already so the finals was Chonari's team vs team あああ (the 5th team listed on the signup sheet) consisting of IN/DI/ED. This is the same team that beat Ain's team and Osaka B's team. IMO, the IN on this team was much better than the IN on Chonari's team. Heres how it went down...

IN (chonari team) beats DI and then ED(あああ)
IN (chonari team) loses to IN (あああ)
DI (chonari team) beats IN (あああ).

So Chonari's team won and Chonari didnt even need to play in the finals! I was shocked considering how well I was doing vs the IN and DI in casuals but I guess thats just how it goes.

After that, they set up the cabs on free play. We stayed for a few hours and played casuals. Kunihiro left first. Around 8, I was getting really really tired and I have no idea why. My ulcer was really bothering me. That might have had something to do with it. I started playing really bad and just wanted to go home, so I told Akinori I was leaving and headed out.

I walked all the way back to the station this time cuz there were no buses coming soon, but it turns out it didnt take all that long... maybe 20 or 30 mins. Somehow, right before I got the station, Akinori caught up with me. I guess he walks pretty fast or something. So we rode the train back to Omiya together and then split up (he lives in Tokorozawa in Saitama). I made it home and went to sleep.

So as of now, there are 6 teams qualified for the B-1 block finals. Next week there are 2 more tournaments for the B-1 block, including the grand finals in Omiya on Sunday. That means, that this block finals will have 8 teams! That is almost as many as some of the prelims... and all of the teams are looking pretty beastly so far! Im gonna enter next Sunday again with Kunihiro and Akinori again. As for Saturday, Kunihiro has work. Akinori can enter but I have to find one more person. I wouldnt mind teaming with ASA again considering how beastly he was playing but him and Akinori play the same character so Ill have to see how things work out. In any case, I should be able to come up with a team in the very least. Im glad to have a Potemkin on my team all the time though because having a good zoning character and a grappler on the same team helps to cover a lot of bad matchups.

Anyway... full brackets for both tournaments can be seen on my flickr page. Go ahead and take a look if you give a shit.

Until next time...

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