May 10, 2019

JP 2019 Fall Street Fighter League: Pro-JP

Fall 2019 SFL College Arcade banner

On Thursday, 2019-05-09 (as far as I can tell) Capcom released details about the upcoming Fall 2019 JP Street Fighter League.

This is all a bit confusing, but I believe the proper name for this is now "Street Fighter League: Pro-JP", as it says on the main streetfighterleague.capcom-s.com site.

It has some changes from the Japan Capcom Street Fighter League Powered by RAGE that ran from January 26th to March 21st in 2019 (or from December 4th, 2018, if you include the Beginner Class Auditions). If you hadn't heard of these events, I wrote extensively about them on my personal blog, which as a personal blog for a random dude just writing about hobby stuff, rightly should not be read by many people. It was a really interesting and fun series that followed on in the footsteps of the 2018 RAGE All Star League Powered by Capcom (note the intentionally different naming) and was a pre-cursor to the currently running Capcom Street Fighter League currently running in America. I couldn't find an official link for that, which shocks me, but read this cool article about Toi by Ginni Lou.

1 2019 JP SFL Fall Overivew

SFL 2019 Overview

The copy on Capcom's Street Fighter League website talks about building a system that helps players move into the Pro League. There are three leagues that feed into a tryout event and draft for the 2019 JP Pro Street Fighter League. Each League has its own rules.

  • Rookie Caravan: an individual format, travelling around to different locations in Japan, culminating in a 3 person team representing Eastern Japan and one for Western Japan to join the draft pool.
  • College League: Online locked character winner stays on 3 on 3 tournament. Limited to college, technical college, or graduate college students. The winning team joins the draft pool.
  • Arcade League: 3 on 3 winner stays on tournament with no repeating characters on a team. 30 arcades across the country pick a representative team, and a tournement decides the three teams that join the draft pool.
Date Event Stream Comments Winners
2019-06-15 (Sat.) SFL College JP 2019 Day 1 Twitch Capcomfightersjp archive Organization is done via a Discord server which has detailed rules. Enter by May 31st. Starts at 13:00 JST. N/A
2019-06-22 (Sat.) SFL College JP 2019 Day 2 Twitch Capcomfightersjp archive Organization is done via a Discord server which has detailed rules. Enter by May 31st. Starts at 15:00 JST. The Uncle Suppression Squad. Mottchan (F.A.N.G. - was on Itazan's Winning JP SFL Season 1 team), Yasu (Rashid), Yu-ji (Chun-Li).
2019-07-28 (Sun.) SFL Arcade JP 2019 Finals Twitch Capcomfightersjp archive Representative teams from 30 Arcades will be decided from May 25th to July 21st. HiFight's compilation of Haku's FANG. See the arcade section below, but the people are AFG, Haku, O.R.C., Neoparu, Storm Kubo, Talon Densis, YOG Machabo, Fudoh Fujimura, Fudoh Johnny
2019-07-13 (Sat.) Rookie's Caravan Hokkaidou Top 8   Fujiwara (Akuma)
2019-07-21 (Sun.) Rookie's Caravan Iwate-ken Top 8   JGK Miu (Ibuki)
2019-07-27 (Sun.) Rookie's Caravan Saitama Top 8 Yuzuponzu had been putting in some work at NLBC too. Wonder how that happened. Yuzuponzu (Dicatator)
2019-08-03 (Sat.) Rookie's Caravan Hiroshima Top 8   Sosuke (Claw)
2019-08-10 (Sat.) Rookie's Caravan Osaka      
2019-08-12 (Mon.) Rookie's Caravan Kumamoto      
2019-07-24 (Wed.) Pro Battle Day 1 YouTube Day 1 Note that these player go into the draft directly, the players above go into the tryouts from which 18 people make it into the draft  
2019-07-25 (Thu.) Pro Battle Day 2 YouTube Day 2 Dogura, Moke, Kichi-palm, Gachi-kun, Bon-chan, Takeuchi John  

The winning team of Street Fighter League Pro JP 2019 will then face off against the winning team of Street Fighter League Pro-US.

2 College League

The College League information site is set up by it looks like "Japan eSports Student Federation" and "eSports Communications limited liability corporation". Entry is open until May 31st, and students at Universities, Graduate Schools, and Technical Colleges are eligible. It is an online 3 on 3 winner stays on, locked character pokemon style team battle. You can change player order with each match. There are more detailed rules here. There was nothing particularly interesting there, except that this is an online tournament and they made no mention about valid stages. I wonder if Super Joe Monday has any opinion at all whatsoever if online tournaments should be specific about using Training Stage. Probably not.

The teams do not need to have members from the same university. Teams can all be from the same location, but it isn't necessary. I've already seen that Okumura Mami (SFV Beginner Class member on Nemo's team, Blanka player now) is joining up with Kawano and Anman's team.

If you are on a College team, you can not be on any other teams that have an entry point into the Street Fighter League: Tryout stage. So you can't join this, and one of the Rookie's Caravan events, or the Arcade Version event. If it somehow happens that the winner was also a representative of an Arcade Shop's team, then the second place team will proceed on to the Tryout stage.

Only a single winning team will advance into the Tryout stage.

Summary

You can see the tournament brackets on Challonge. I posted links up above in the Overview section to the archive. One team, three players move on to the pool for the Tryout stage.

Top 4:

  1. The Uncle Suppression Squad. Mottchan, Nagoya University (F.A.N.G. - was on Itazan's Winning JP SFL Season 1 team), Yasu, Komazawa University (Rashid), Yu-ji, Tokyo University (Chun-Li).
  2. We love Mung Bean Sprouts. Kawano, Ritsumeikan University (Kolin - was on JP SFL Season 1), Shuto, Chiba Commercial College (Urien, also known previously as Anman, was on Nemo's 2nd place JP SFL Season 1 team), Okumura Mami, Japan Women's University (Blanka, was on Nemo's 2nd place JP SFL Season 1 team).
  3. 20 soldiers (卒?). Amano, Chuo University (Nash, a regular at the FCA Akihabara weekly), Kinoko Boxer, Tama Art University (Boxer, a regular at the FCA Akihabara weekly), Tsudayu, Nagaoku Technical College (Alex).

3 Arcade League

The official name for this league is the Street Fighter League Arcade 2019 powered by Taito.

The format is a single elimination 3 on 3 team tournament. It is running at 30 arcades across Japan, which participate in the qualification round. Each arcade will determine a representative team for their arcade from 2019-05-25 to 2019-07-21. The playoffs will run on 2019-07-28 from 10:00 to 19:00 at Taito Megarage, Map. Each arcade has a specific day and time that they run their tournament to determine the winner for their shop.

Some format specifics:

  • FT2 for a win
  • Winner stays on in the team battle
  • Teams are not allowed to have duplicate characters on them
  • Every game, you can change your character (but not during a match)
  • V-Trigger can be selected before the match, but can't be changed during a match
  • Stages are set to random (the machines will be in Event mode, which is always random)
  • Rainbow Mika's cheerleader outfit is banned
  • You can use your own controller (but they have some rules around what happens if your controller isn't properly recognized)
  • If buttons on the cabinet don't work, you can stop the match and the staff will investigate. If they find no issues, you lose that match (not the game).

Taito announced the location of the arcades that are participating 2019-05-14, with a complete list of the 30 shops here. The first tournament is May 25th, in Saga-ken, and the last is July 21st in Saitama. I counted 7 arcades in Tokyo (Plaza Capcom Kichijoji, Hey, Taito Station Takadanobaba, Shinjuku Sportsland, Taito Station South Gate Game World, Gamespot Versus, and Taito Station Tachikawa), and otherwise spread out all over the country. You need to register for the tournament at least 15 minutes before the tournament starts in person at the arcade, but can probably register in advance before that. Swing by your local arcade and see what they say.

Updated 2019-06-19

The various arcade tournaments to elect a winning team for each arcade have begun. Taito has been posting the winning teams. I'll keep a list of the teams here, and a few comments.

Updated 2019-07-09

Added more arcade results. Also added information about the finals location Taito Megarage, Map held on Sunday July 28th.

Updated 2019-07-17

Added more arcade results. People are really travelling around to get these wins.

Arcade Team Name Members Comments
Maxim Hero Kaburagi Children Kaburagi, Fujiwara, Kimi  
Taito Station Sendai Schrodinger's Cat Yu-sama, Yo-da, Sugar  
Plaza Capcom Ishinomaki Oushyuu Invaders Pipin, Takehara, Amule  
Plaza Capcom Koufuten Rank Up Ticket Uosuke, Toshi, Kuro  
Bypass Leisureland Fujie Sara Zanmai Dzuma, Chancie, Reoreo  
Game Paddok +1 Koga Iori Channel Takeuchi John, Kosaku, Unsu Damn, Takeuchi John traveled out to Ibaraki? That's like 2 hours by train from Tokyo.
Lucky Central Shop Felicidad Kichijoji Capcom Plaza Crew anton, Mega Kacho, Mohamed Some FCA regulars here.
Gameland Tsudanuma We are a Solid Hit Whirlwind Fujii, Willy, Minowa In their notes: "You see this, Kichijyoji crew?". Fujii and Willy are FCA regulars.
Houston Nishi Kawaguchi The power of 1,100,000LP Urashima, Xenocchi, TRASHBOX TRASHBOX has a lot of those LPs.
Plaza Capcom Yokosuka Hell Screen Mizuha, Pugera, inaba Strong team, name taken from an old short story.
HEY Daboyu (W?) Dusk, Bonbi-, Yukimayu Yukimayu a rare JP Laura
Taito Station Bigbox Takadanobaba Muscle Steak Yuzupon, Narikun, JoJo Tarou  
Shinjuku Sportsland Arcade (VOD) Yesterday's Enemies are Today's friends Majorboy, Noguchi, aiai This looks like a strong team, all three sometimes show up at FCA
Taito Station Shinjuku South All thanks to Kagecchi-san Doramon, Serikawa, Suika Kagecchi runs the Wed. night FCA local.
Gamespot Versus (VOD) Character Love! Yossan (Juri), Kichi-palm (Zangief), Nishikin (Blanka) I'm really happy to see Kichi-Palm in there with his Zangief. Juli, Zangief, and Blanka on their team.
Plaza Capcom Kichijyoji 1985 Daibunjin, P-suke, Crusher Crusher's also a FCA regular, and I've seen P-suke around too.
Taito Station Tachikawa We love Mung Bean Sprouts Kawano, shuto, Okumura Mami This team tried to win a spot in the College qualifier, but didn't make it. They traveled out to Tachikawa and took a spot there.
Gameland Okusaki Take your hat off on the 16th Floor Makinomaki, Ogunee, Oarinbu  
Taito Station Phoedra Osu We plan to take over the world M.O.V., Vanao, Powell MOV and Vanao travel out to Nagoya to join up with Powell. "Next we take over the country!" they say.
Amuse Factory Tokonamae Greedy Vases Sousuke, Toriha, Shiba D  
Gameland Asakusa Demon Sauzan Kenpi, Ken, Poiful  
Fantasy Star Akira 100% Ryukichi, Hikarin, Akira Their comments are funny: Ryukichi "I'll do my best" Hikarin (the same) Akira: You 2 need to try harder.
a-cho World Treasure Himeji Castle Matoon, G.Y.R.O., Tomeyan  
Game Point Chateu EX French Beef Bowl Tooth tooth rock rock, Mysterious Chanko shop, Koropipi  
Sega Naniwa Abion AHO AFG, Haku, O.R.C.  
Taito Station Fukuoka Tenjin Ex-Yankis Jyaji, The 2nd Pi-chan, Student dog  
The last $5 Patchwork Knee Patch, Watch Godzilla, Rushing Cook  
Plaza Capcom Ooita Jump and do a XX kick like you wanna come down NICO, Hot latte Sugita, Ria  
Round One Ginowan Influenza Beer Jay, Mizanin, Coffee All the way out in Okinawa

The winning team from each arcade will go on to the playoffs on July 28th, and three teams will advance to the tryout stage for the JP Street Fighter League.

Updated 2019-08-04

The Street Fighter Pro League archive is up on Twitch. The results are:

  1. AHO, Sega Naniwa Abion, AFG, Haku, O.R.C..
  2. Hugo-ses Honda, they advanced from the day of tournament, Neoparu, Storm Kubo, Talon|Densis
  3. EXDP, also advanced from the day of tournament, YOG|Machabo, Fudoh|Fujimura, Fudoh|Johnny

4 Rookie Caravan

In July and August of 2018 Capcom ran their Rookie Caravan events, which was basically a road show around Japan in different locations (usually Aeon Malls, but one occurred at Kumamoto Castle) with a Pro SFV player representative and one representative usually from the entertainment world. Each region got a regional winner, and they got support from Capcom to attend the Japan Premiere at Tokyo Game Show that year.

Details haven't been announced for this part of the event yet, but it will be an individual tournament, not a team tournament. Their graphic shows six teams coming out of the series of Rookies Caravan events (I assume it will be regional as the previous run was) so I'm not sure how they are going to form the teams. Those feed into a tournament to decide the Eastern Japan and Western Japan representatives, two teams total, so I'm assuming one from each region.

Update 2019-06-24 Capcom has announced more information about the Rookie's Caravan 2019.

There will be six regional Rookie Caravan events. All of these run from 10:00 to 18:00. You need to register beforehand. If you attend, they have some nice SFV Arcade Edition buttons for fight sticks that you can get.

Date Location Smash Link Guests Top 8 Winner
2019-07-13 Sat. Hokkaidou, Sapporo, Aeon Qaulite Prix, Shin Sapporo, Map Smash by 7/5 Gachi-kun, Kitsune-san (comedians) Top 8 Grand Finals Fujiwara (Akuma)
2019-07-21 Sun. Iwate-ken, Morioka, Aeon Mall Morioka, Map Smash by 7/12 Hatsume, Takeue Shinichiro (comedian from Nagreboshi, also on first JP SFL tryouts) Top 8 JGK Miu (Ibuki)
2019-07-27 Sun. Saitama-ken, Koshigawa, Aeon Lake Town Kaze, Map Smash by 7/19 Dogura, Okumura Mami (JP SFL Beginner on Nemo Aurora). Top 8 Grand Finals Yuzuponzu (Dictator)
2019-08-03 Sat. Hiroshima, The Outlets Hiroshima, Map Smash by 7/26 Okumura Mami, Kitsune-san Top 8 Grand Finals Sosuke (Claw)
2019-08-10 Sat. Osaka, Aeon Mall Sakai Teppocho, Map Smash by 8/2 Jyobin (Ex MMA Necali Yoshimoto Gaming), Kuro-chan (tv talent) Top 8 Grand Finals Shuto (Urien)
2019-08-12 Mon. Hiroshima, Aeon Mall Kumamoto Event Space, Map Smash by 8/2 Nemo, Takeue Shinichiro Top 8 Naooonn (Akuma)

Yamato will be on commentary for all events, with Yoshizumi Erika (an idol, voice actress, and talent) as the MC.

Capcom is soliciting submissions of artwork on the theme of Street Fighter. I'm not going to read through all the fine print, but my guess is that you have to give up your rights to the work and won't get paid for it. They will run a single elimination tournament at each event. Top 8 for each one will switch to double elimination. The top three from each event will move on to represent their region as a three person team and take place in a Japan East Vs. West team competition. Two teams from that will move on to 2019 JP SFL Tryouts.

5 Street Fighter League Pro Player Selection Battle

I haven't seen anything about the pro player yet. At the Hokkaidou Rookie's Caravan on July 13th, Ono-san talked a bit about the draft and said that there will be two nights of competition between JeSU Licensed Pro Players (no Momochi I guess) competing on July 24th and 25th. Yamato and Sasa will be the commentary team on the stream. Six pros will make it into the draft pool. There isn't any word on who the six team leaders will be.

2019-07-22 Update with info on the Pro Player Selection Battle.

Capcom announced that the Pro JeSU license holding players will compete over two days at Red Bull Gaming Sphere Tokyo. It will be streamed from 7pm JST from the announcement page. The pro players will be broken up into three groups, with two people from each group moving on to the draft. The player groupings and also team captains will be announced at this event.

Date Full Stream
2019-07-24 YouTube Day 1
2019-07-25 YouTube Day 2
Group Members Advance
A Johhny, Jyobin, Crusher, Machabo Dogura, Moke
B Fujimura, sako, Ryusei, Powell Kichi-palm, Gachi-kun
C Haitani, Trashbox, Storm Kubo, Tachikawa Bon-chan, Takeuchi John

6 Tryouts

I haven't seen any information about Tryouts yet. I'll update this when I see something.

7 JP Pro League

Update 2019-08-09 Added some information about the Street Fighter League: Pro-JP schedule.

The Pro JP 2019 Street Fighter League will consist of 6 teams, each with a team captain that holds a JeSU Pro License. The other members of the team will come from the 24 person draft pool of 6 JeSU Pro license holders, 3 people from the Street Fighter League College JP 2019 winning team, 6 people from the East and West winning team of the Rookie's Caravan 2019 league, and 9 people from 3 teams from SFL Arcade 2019 League.

Specific details about the 3 on 3 team format haven't yet been announced, but one thing that has been announced is that there will be a Character Ban that operates the same as in the Street Fighter League US. That rule is only for the JP Pro League, and specifically is not used in the Arcade or College leagues.

The Chigesoku blog has a brief write-up of the recording schedule for the Street Fighter League: Pro-JP, and lots of JP Twitter people are complaining that the schedule really isn't realistic for anyone other than students, pros, or people without real jobs. In essence, the shooting will be held in Tokyo, on the following schedule:

Date Session Comments
2019-09-17 10:00 - 18:00 1 Tuesday  
2019-09-20 10:00 - 18:00 2 Friday  
2019-09-24 10:00 - 18:00 3 Tuesday  
2019-09-25 10:00 - 18:00 4 Wednesday  
2019-10-05 10:00 - 18:00 5 Saturday  
2019-12-01 10:00 - 18:00 Grand Final offline Sunday Pro-JP Top 3 teams
2019-12-13 - 2019-12-15 Winning team to LA to play US team At Capcom Cup

People who are involved in the Draft were told that the above is the schedule, and if they are not able to commit to making that, they would need to withdraw from the competition. They also note that the schedule may change. Having four sessions that are on weekdays from 10am to 6pm means that it would be really tough for people with jobs and those that live far away to take part in the entire schedule. Nishikin, Haku, Deshiken, a bunch of people have some tweets quoted on the blog talking about how this would be difficult.

7.1 My thoughts on the character ban rule

So far I've really enjoyed the different incarnations of team battles that I've watched in Japan and the US. The character ban changes what is important in evaulating player capability. It adds an aspect of generality over being a character specialist. I think that is fine, although I'm personally more interested in seeing players play to the best of their capability. Since Capcom is involved in this, it seems that they are setting the precendent in valuing a player's ability to play multiple characters.

One thing I have enjoyed seeing are the different focuses different seasons have had. The most recent JP Street Fighter League powered by RAGE had an interesting focus on players at different skill levels, and I thought it was very interesting to watch the Beginner class player improve over time. In the US Street Fighter League I've enjoyed watching character specialists play with secondaries and improve over time, although I would prefer to see more high level play. At a very high level I think players should have the ability to quickly pick up characters, at least faster than casual players would, but generally I don't think the character ban has introduced much strategy into the choice of who to ban. I don't think it has done much to improve diversity of characters played either, if that was the intent.

Still, I'm interested in seeing experimentation, so I'm not too worried about things.




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