2022 Summer / Fall SFL: Pro-JP

Table of Contents

2022 Summer / Fall Street Fighter League: Pro-JP

I’ll keep some notes about the JP SFL as I watch it here. I don’t intend to take in-depth notes, but focus mostly on the human interactions.

The Capcom Street Fighter League Results page has links to all of the YouTube videos, it is a super great site.

1 2022-09-06 JP SFL Section 1 Day 1

1.1 Street Fighter League Warm-up

The idea it to make it easy for even new people to watch SFL. Last year, they had a post-game show that was similar.

Aru and Hameko introduce us to the teams. They take some footage from the previous 1on1 tournament (on a pay service) showing the players in the games coming up. It was very brief – only a few seconds for some players, longer for others. They called out Crusher as having done well in the 1on1 tournament, and noted that Mizuha used to use Kolin but is using Luke and Cody now. Moke picked up Falke too. Nemo is using Urien, Falke, and Gill now. This was a super quick introduction to the teams and players which would be hard for someone new to SFL to follow, but does give a flavor of the players. I think they spoiled the 1on1 tournament ending showing Fuudo winning it (I haven’t seen that yet – it is still on Zaiko).

The next segment is Hameko’s Choice. Early on, Aru said that they were doing this show a bit casually, and with the announcement of “Hameko’s Choice” Hameko said that this was a bit too casual – he wouldn’t have chosen the word “choice” himself – they just say the material earlier in the day apparently. He uses this segment to introduce the teams that are playing today.

Hiroshima Team iXA: First time in JP SFL, led by Storm Kubo, has Gunfight, Inaba, and Crusher. Storm Kubo was in SFL in 2020, took part in 2018 and 2019 drafts, and was super mad to not be chosen in the draft. (I remember that, he really was bummed out, there were some tough streams then.) They felt like he had a lot of talent, and now he’s joining as a team leader. The team has a lot of rare characters, you might even say low tier, and you can enjoy watching by seeing how hard ther develop their game as the underdog.

The second team is Gyogun: This is one of the few teams that didn’t change at all from last year. Mago, Machabo-, Mizuha, and Moke. Mago is using Luke, Machabo- has returned to Necali, Mizuha has changed from Kolin to Cody and Luke, and Moke is using Rashid, Falke, and possibly some Luke.

The third team is Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom: Akira, Umehara, Fuudo, and Narikun. The leader is from Naogya OJA BODY STAR last year, Akira, and with the Mildom Beast team’s dissolution picked up Daigo and Fuudo, and got Narikun in the draft. Fuudo has been very impressive lately, and is probably the person most teams are worried about in the league. Narikun was picked up in the draft and according to rumors has really improved since then.

The fourth team is Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto: Looks a lot like last year, picked up Higuchi who graduated from Shinobism, and YHC-Mochi who was on Mildom Beast previously. The team has an interesting selection of characters, and players who are very offensive. Their leader’s nickname is “Violence Nemo” (jokingly), and the team really fits with the red color uniforms.

Even though the tournament hasn’t started, two teams already have points: Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom (20) and Good 8 Squad (20) from ties in the 1on1 tournament. Good 8 Squad had a whopping 3 players in the Top 8. They present the schedule – most Tuesdays and Fridays in September and October with some variation.

1.2 Introduction

The intro movie is nice – they ground each of the teams in the local area they represent, which is nice.

The scoring is the same as last season, with home and away teams. The away team specifies the player and character for the first, second, and third slots (one player does not play). The home team has a chance to look at that pre-determined order, and choose which player and character goes up after each set. They also changed the name of the player that doesn’t play from “reserve” to “stand-by”. The first (Vanguard) and second (Center) matches are worth 10 points, the last match (Captain) worth 20. New this season, if there is a tie after that in points, there is an overtime FT1 match worth 5 points. You can choose any of the 4 team members for that match.

1.3 Team iXA vs. Gyogun

Away team introduced first.

Storm Kubo’s Abigail impression is great, and Crusher eating a doughnut tracks.

It looks to me like this is happening live, but remote since we get all the players in a green screen windowed setup.

Gyogun sends up Mago Luke, Machabo- Necali, and Moke Rashid with Mizuha on stand-by. Storm Kubo says that this is what they expected, and they send up Gunfight Oro to take on Mago’s Luke. I’m not going to write about the matches – you can catch those on the archive – so I’ll just talk about interesting stuff that goes on around the match.

They ask Mago his thoughts heading into the match, and he expected to fight Crusher, but he’s prepped for Gunfight too, and (DAMN) that while he’s lost to Gunfight in many things in the realm of life, he’ll beat him in the game. Moving to Gunfight: he’s nervous because this is the true opening game, but will do his best. If he gets good rocks, he can win.

Watch the matches, they are good, but Mago wins.

Up in the center slot is Crusher’s Birdie, going against Machabo’s Necali. Machabo said that Mago had great neutral play and he wants to continue that to win. Crusher says that he’s been putting in the work to prepare for this and wants to get the results that show it.

Storm Kubo puts up Inaba Dictator in the Captain slot, up against Moke’s Rashid. Moke says that there’s a lot of pressure since they won the first two matches, and if he loses they throw that away. He’ll do his best. Inaba says he’s prepared for Moke, and will do his best.

Surprisingly, on the first set of the season, there is a best of 1 overtime game. Gyogun puts up Machabo Necali, and Team iXA puts up Gunfight Oro (they had some discussion, didn’t seem super sure who was best.) They asked Machabo for some words, his volume was so low I’m not even going to try. They ask Gunfight for some words, and he had put his headset away already, but says that he’ll pray to the God of Rocks.

Also, definitely check the tapes. Team iXA had the luck of the rocks with them, and got the win. I’m sure as the home team that wasn’t the way they wanted things to go, but they do come out ahead in points.

Team iXA: Aru asked if Gunfight tried to CA at the end of his rock combo, and he did, but it didn’t come out. He got lucky though. He was nervous and dropped the combo. They ask Storm Kubo what he thought, and he said they were able to win with the power of the rocks. They were weak with the rest, but won with the rocks. Hameko says that Inaba was able to save them from losing all 40 points, and Inaba says that he thought the other team was nervous too. Hameko thought it was impressive to continue to pressure even when he was down on match point, and Inaba says it was tough, he wanted it to get easier end too. Crusher says that he didn’t play well, and is grateful for his teammates. He’ll do better next time. Aru asked Storm Kubo about the team order, and he said that they were practicing recently for Gyogun, and maybe it didn’t work out as they planned but thanked the people they practiced with. Their next match is away, and Storm Kubo thinks that is tough for them so they will take some time to prepare to get a better result than this time.

1.4 Nagoya OJA BODY STARS Mildom vs. Shunsaikan Sol Kumamoto

Saishunkan Sol puts up Nemo Falke, Higuchi Guile, and YHC-Mochi Dhalsim.

Nagoya OJA BODY START Mildom puts up Daigo Guile against Nemo Falke.

Nemo said that he expected to face Daigo’s Guile, since he’s played a lot against Falke. But since they’ve also got Higuchi on his team, he’s thoroughly prepared for Guile. When asked for his feelings, Daigo said in a very happy voice “I’m going to contribute to the team!”. He did just that.

Next up is Narikun Akira against Higuchi Guile. Higuchi says that Narikun has fought a lot of Guiles, and gotten stronger, so he won’t go easy on him and wants to win. Narikun says that first of all, he’s going to show them just whose Guile it is that he’s been playing against. Of course Narikun would have Akira take off the blazer in the first match, that totally fits with his style.

Next up is Fuudo Mika vs. YHC-Mochi. He says that he’s up against a Fuudo who is playing really well, and thinks it is a tough match-up, but not impossible. He’s going to put in all his effort and do his best. Fuudo says they were on the same team, and was very happy about that, and wants to have a good match. Fuudo takes it.

On the winner’s side, Daigo says that it was a good start, especially since they were able to go up 20 points. Aru asked Daigo what he thought of YHC-Mochi’s match, who says it was a bit different from what he expected but luck was with them. Narikun is sad that he lost, but happy for the team. Hameko says that he thinks Narikun has developed enough that other teams are starting to look out for him, to which Narikun replies he has played a lot of external matches. Fuudo said he was very nervous and he actually didn’t do that last V-reversal, but it luckily hit. Akira says he really can depend on his teammates, and Narikun had good movement at the start. Aru asks about his strategy for this match, actually he had decided who to put up depending on the other team’s order, but actually they were discussing it right up until the start, and everyone had prepared well so it worked out. Their next match is away and should be tough but he hopes they can all work hard and win.

2 2022-09-09 JP SFL Section 1 Day 2

2.1 Warmup

Hameko and Yamato are on commentary this time. They talk about the teams that will play tonight.

On Hameko’s Choice, he talks about v6 Plus FAV gaming, who picked up Torimeshi Dhalsim while Ryusei is on a medical break. This team is likely Luke, Luke, Luke, Dhalsim.

Comyufa Detonation has Itazan who has picked up G. Nauman is using Sakura and Luke, while John Takeuchi plays Cody and has been doing very well. Uryo plays Rose, and that means all their opponents really have to prepare for Rose.

Shinobism Gaming hasn’t changed too much. They used to have Higuchi, but now have Yamaguchi and Johnny. Fujimura was using Cammy but is using Luke. There are maybe 10 people using Luke, but Fujimura really plays him in a way that nobody else does. Johnny plays G and Karin.

The last team is Good 8 Squad. (As a side-note, on Friday Tachikawa announced that he has signed a contract as a Good 8 Squad sparring partner, which is interesting.) They picked up Dictator whose Vega is a good fit.

2.2 vPlus FAV Gaming vs. Comyufa Detonation

Comyufa Detonation puts up Nauman’s Luke, Itazan’s G, and Takeuchi John’s Cody.

sako puts up Torimeshi Dhalsim first. Nauman says he’s super excited for things to get started, and wants to kick things off with a good start for Comyufa Detonation. Torimeshi says this is his first time in SFL, and he has to go up in the first match. He’s nervous but will do his best to play like he normally does.

Itabashi Zangief says that Nauman did a great job, and he really expects that to continue with Uryo (?). Bon-chan says he’s practiced in order to beat Itazan, and will do his best.

Takeuchi John with his stylish glasses: Since the team let me take the Captain’s slot, I expected that I would face Tokido. I think it will be a really entertaining match if I win so I’ll do my best! Tokido says that he wants to treat this first match of the season with the reverence that it deserves, and since they won the whole thing last season, he’ll go into the match with that confidence and play his best.

After that victory, they ask Takeuchi John how he feels after a 3-0 sweep in his first match (pretty good, I suspect.) He’s super happy that they got the 3-0 as the away team, he’s really going nuts. They ask Nauman how he feels after taking the first game. He says he thinks the first match is really important, it sets the tone, and he really prepared a lot for it. They ask Uryo (the stand-by player) how he feels after seeing this strong play, he says they had long strategy meetings about this match-up, and really went through all possible ways to send people up, and he feels really like they have a strong team feeling since they were able to get this win. He’s really happy about it. They ask Itazan about how important this win is, and he says it’s really impressive that they were able to get this win against the Championship team as the away team, even though he lost, it went according to plan. Yamato asks him about what that plan was. He said that their team really has a lot of different variations and patterns that they can throw at you. He thought maybe it would start with Nauman and Torimeshi, and probably Tokido would face John, but it could have been different. This is what really makes Street Fighter League interesting. Finally they ask him about their next match. He says that he really feels like last season was unfortunate, and he really wants to do well in the first part of the season, going into Day 3 and Day 4. Please continue to support us!

2.3 Shinobism vs. Good 8 Squad

The away team Good 8 Squad puts up Dogura (Dictator), Kawano (Kolin), and Gachi-kun (Rashid). Yamaguchi Luke is up first for Shinobism.

Dogura says that even though it is the first match and they are the away team, he’s facing Luke, who he’s completely prepared for, so he’ll give it his all. Yamaguchi says he is prepared for Dogura’s Dictator and thinks he will win.

Johnny G will go up against Kawano’s Kolin. Yamato asks Kawano what he thinks of going up against Johnny’s G, and Kawano is really at a loss for words. “Um, yes.” big pause. Scratches head. “G? I’ll do my blurst – best”. (He literally messed up Ganbarimasu.) He said as they were cutting to Johnny that he just couldn’t think of anything. Johnny says that his oppoenent is the King that won Evo, but that doesn’t have anything to do with anything. He’ll do his best.

For the Captain slot Shinobism puts up Fujimura Luke. Gachi-kun says that if they can get 30 points as the away team, he’s happy with that. As the captain he will win and get those 30 points. Fujimura says that Shinobism gaming is famous for getting off to a bad start in the first match of the season, but he’s going to win and get them off to a good start this time.

After the win, Yamato asks Gachi-kun about the match with Fujimura. He says that ever since Luke came out, he’s been putting a lot of time into that match-up, and he really put his heart into this opening match, and was glad he could play well. They asks Gachi-kun if Pugera was on stand-by as part of their strategy against Shinobism gaming, and he said that originally Pugerea was going to take the Captain slot, but they were worried about having to match up with Cody, so in the end Gachi-kun went up. They ask Dogura how he feels about winning as the away team, and he’s happy. He also faced Luke, and Yamaguchi’s Luke has been very good lately, but he and Gachi-kun had been practicing for Luke constantly and their practiced showed. Kawano is really happy that the team won, but his character is a bit weaker. If there are matches where people think it’s tough for them, Kawano will play it. He’ll at least bring it to 50/50. And in this case, he just lost that 50/50. They ask Pugera what he thought of this opening match. Pugera says that like Gachi-kun said before, they were really thinking about the order until just minutes before the match, and I left it up to them, but watching the matches I’m I glad I did. We’ve got a good team, of course, I’m sad because I really wanted to play, but I’ll contribute next time. Gachi-kun says that their team is super strong, and they won’t let anyone down next time and will win.

3 2022-09-13 JP SFL Section 2 Day 1

This week I realized that Capcom Fighters in English is streaming the JP SFL like they did last year, which is excellent. I had watched the previous two days in Japanese. I was able to watch this day live, which I did on the English stream, so now I’m going back to watch the warm-up and take some notes on the interview segments. The English stream does have some unnamed hero providing the commentary team with information so they have things to say about the interviews and other Japanese information, which is great.

Some people might find my notes and translations – and be aware that I do this for fun, as a hobby, so I’m not putting any sort of professional guarantee behind these translations – useful, so I’ll keep doing this to the extent that I find it entertaining.

Note that due to Tokyo Game Show on Thursday through Sunday this week (that’s the broad assumption anyway) that there is only one day of SFL this week.

3.1 Warmup

The warmup gives a summary of the previous matches, and even went back to some of the Week 1 Day 1 matches. They talked a bit about Team iXA’s play, and if you haven’t seen GunFight’s videos on the behind-the-scenes JP SFL (in English!) you are missing out. Definitely watch those.

In the Hameko’s Choice segment, Hameko highlighted the best match from the previous two sessions. He selected Nari-kun vs. Higuchi and explained the sequence in the first game first round when Higuchi was losing to Nari-kun, and Nari-kun was about to use V-Trigger to call Daigo. They played the sequence in slow motion and explained it (Nari-kun plus after activating, etc.) how Nari-kun would want to throw, but is worried about EX flashkick, so moves forward to threaten the throw, then crouches to bait the flashkick, but Higuchi actually walked forward for the throw even though Daigo is jumping in. Hameko also talked about how Daigo really first showed this kind of offensive action in this situation and others Guiles have integrated that. Hameko also said maybe Nari-kun was looking for Higuchi to chip him out, so they checked out that option in training mode and showed that straight CA wouldn’t have done it, but flashkick to CA cancel would, but Daigo then beats that out and kills Guile for the win before the chip happens. Interesting analysis!

3.2 Komyufa Detonation Gaming vs. Nagoya OJA Body Stars

First up is Itazan G vs. Daigo Guile. When asked about the match, Daigo says “I’ll do it!” (I always have trouble translating Daigo, he’s got a real personality. Maybe also “I’ll take it”, or “Sounds good”, he had a bit of smile, didn’t seem too concerned, and looked pretty happy. He also adds quickly at the end when everyone’s laughing that he has no choice and has to do it anyway) Itazan, when Hameko asks his response to Daigo’s “I’ll take it”, said that he’s the same age as Ume-chan (Umehara, calling him Ume-chan shows a sense of familiarity and friendship – or in some contexts can be belittling, but that’s not the case here) and views him as a hostile rival.

Next up is Nauman Luke vs. Akira Cammy. Akira says that last year he played Nauman and lost to him (I don’t know where though) and feels like he has a chance now to pay him back for that, and will go full strength in this battle. Nauman says he practiced super hard for this, and will do his best, for himself and for Itazan.

The captain match is Takeuchi Jon’s Cody vs. Fuudo. Fuudo says that as the away team they’ve already won two matches, and his palms are already super sweaty with how nervous he is. But that’s really reduced a lot now. Aru asks if it will get worse again if they have to go into the tiebreaker game, but Fuudo says no no no no no no no, they’ve already won two games, and it’s really important for the future that they get this last game, and he thinks he can do it. Takeuchi John says he obviously thinks it is important for him to win, and the tiebreaker set is in the future, and he feels the pressure of trying to win this to move on, and he hasn’t yet faced Fuudo and wants to take on that challenge.

Nagoya OJA Body Star won handily, so Aru and Hameko talk with them. Fuudo said it was great that he was able win; Takeuchi John pressured well during their set. It was key that he won quickly initially. They said that his corner play was really good, and referring to one time when he didn’t kill with a combo Fuudo said he thought there might have been a kill combo there, and he should have tried harder. They said he should be happy since his teammates won too, and they got all the points, but Fuudo points out that it is much to early to celebrate yet, it’s just the second week. Next they ask Daigo about his match and how he was able to “do it”. He said there was really a lot of jumping that worked well, and things went back and forth, and really it shouldn’t have been like that, but in the end luck was with him. Aru asks if he expected G, and he said that he thought that was a likely match-up, 70% chance or so. Aru said his team got all 40 points, and Daigo said he thinks there is a chance their team can go all the way this year. Aru asks how Nari-kun feels, and Nari-kun said that it’s great, his teammates are all super strong. Finally, Akira says he’s super happy, and he’s a bit embarrassed that he was smiling so much during the match. He’s really practiced the Luke match a lot this year and he’s glad that practice paid off. Aru said it’s important that he showed their team could fight Luke, but also that they got 40 points, and Akira thinks it’s amazing that they were able to get 40 points in their first away match. It’s a great start, and they’ll keep getting points. Asked about the next match, Akira says that they won’t stop this momentum. He said something interesting about how they have either the strongest Mercenary Guile on their team (傭兵 Guile team) or, a homonym that makes sense, a team with tactics centered around Guile (用兵 Guile team). I think probably it’s the mercenary interpretation though. I think that because next he says that he and Nari-kun want to continue to develop and grow their strength so that they aren’t just being carried but that they can help carry the team too.

3.3 Gyogun vs. vPlus FAV Gaming

Before choosing Mizhua, Mago seemed to freeze – I thought it was his video, but he was just trolling. He called out Mizuha Cody vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido said that he’ll do his best! He lost earlier, didn’t even get a round, so he’ll start with taking a round. Mizuha says he’s gotten good at the Cody vs. Luke matchup, and will do his best.

Mago made a bit of a show saying that they only have one choice, it’s up to Moke! He didn’t say what character, and Moke quickly said he’s using Rashid – you could hear Mago in the background getting after him for answering. sako said that he lost in the winner’s side to Moke that just recently happened, so he wants to get the run back. They asked how he felt about playing against Rashid, and he said “it’s ok.” They went back to Moke, who said he is confident. He also said that he recently lost (maybe he’s talking about SFL) and he wants to be able to contribute not just individually (referencing the World Warrior event) but to the team as well.

For the Captain slot Mago Luke went up again Bon-chan Luke. Bon-chan said that since Luke’s both their strongest character he expected a mirror match, and Aru asked about that (how he knew that Mago said it was his strongest character.) Bon-chan said that he heard that, and that also apparently it’s from someone who isn’t married, so he wanted to try the mirror match. I think there’s some referencing to things I’m not really aware of (Mago’s well known to be a single and living with his family still, I’m not sure the point of this kind of joking around, but it is amusing.) They went back to Mago and asking him if he has confidence in the Luke mirror match. He said he has done a lot of prep for this and is confident. He actually thought he would be facing Tokido, and their order really surprised him, and he was really thrown for a loop. Aru asks if that’s why he froze up earlier, and he said yeah, their order (battle formation 布陣 – strange word choice) really is surprising. But he says as the Captain he’s still facing Luke and it doesn’t really change, he’s confident in his ground game, and he wants to make his stand here.

For the tie-breaker they ask sako who they want to put up, and he asks for more time to debate. Tokido said that if he (Bon-chan) wants to go up he’s prepared for that or would volunteer. Bon-chan says if it’s ok for him to go up, he wants to. sako says since Bon-chan wants to play, he should, and puts up Bon-chan Luke. Mago then has to decide who to put up, and Mago is like “Bon-chan!?” and thinks it should be Mizuha or him. When he says he’ll go up, Machabo- encourages him. So Mago goes up. Bon-chan says it was shameful that he didn’t get 20 points, but he’ll get the tie-breaker. When they turn to Mago he says, I can understand why Bon-chan would want to face me again, and so I’ll give it to him. He can face me again (implying he’s doing a favor.) And he stares intently at the camera.

After Gyogun wins, Aru asks Mizuha how he feels after going up first. He said he wasn’t able to implement many of the things that he had practiced, and that it all ended before he knew it. He feels like he was too weak mentally, and he’d like to reflect on that, and take it as his next challenge. He didn’t feel physical pressure, but in the Cody Luke matchup he didn’t feel like he was able to do things that he wanted to. The interview seemed a bit tough and Mizuha sounded a bit depressed, but Aru did at the end say “with that, the team did win in the end” to try to cheer him up a bit. Moke says that he’s really happy that Gyogun got the win but he’s unhappy with his performance. Aru says that it is a team battle, and Moke says that he really wants to be able to focus on the next battle. Aru asks Machabo what he thinks as he watched it, and Machabo says he feels like he was cheering on people just like the audience, but he’s sat out two battles in a row. But he’s happy that Mago won this time, and he wants to make a contribution to the team next time. Aru turns to Mago and says that in this situation Mago’s probably entitled to say whatever he wants, but how does he feel? Mago says that their opponents are truly tough, and that their daily practice really showed through, but he wants to be able to say one selfish thing. “I did it!” (Everyone laughs.) Aru says that he thinks that’s a message that will reach all the other teams, but in two matches both of them have gone to the tie-breaker match, and did he feel any pressure? Mago says his movement was really bad at the start, and he lost two rounds quickly, but over time he was able to move the pace more towards what he wanted to do. Originally he had planned for Tokido, and he was really doubting why Tokido didn’t turn up. He’s glad it was a Luke mirror though since he had prepared for that. He thought if Bon-chan had used Sagat it would have been really tough, but he was glad it was Luke and it was a lot of fun. Asked about the next match, Mago said that they got the tie-breaking win in this one, and looking forward he doesn’t want to go to the tie-breaker again. He doesn’t think this was a good result for the Home team though and wants to reflect on that.

4 2022-09-20 JP SFL Section 2 Day 2

4.1 Warmup

Today we have Yamato as the MC with Hameko as the analyst. Yamato does some Street Fighter stuff, I think he’s more of a professional commentary guy that does other e-Sports stuff, but he’s in the Capcom JP rotation. I’m more familiar with people like Nanai and Sasa who came from the local community, but Yamato is easy to understand and does a good job.

After a preview of the teams that we’ll see, Hameko’s choice focuses on the scramble ending from Section 1 Day 1 with Gunfight Oro vs. Machabo Necali in the tie-breaker FT1 match. It was a close match that came down to final round, both players with full CA meter, and Gunfight was in a rock combo that could end in CA for the kill. He dropped it though. At the start of the sequence, Hameko talked about how he was trying to re-create it, and he tried for 30 minutes to get the same collection of rocks that Gunfight had but it never came up so he finally just gave up. So the damage was a bit lower than what Gunfight was doing, but it was still enough to kill. When he dropped it, Machabo had been mashing out his own CA, and that came out, but Gunfight was able to block and win. Fun and interesting breakdown.

4.2 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Shinobism Gaming

The first match was Shuto Urien vs. Yamaguchi Luke. Yamato asked Yamaguchi for his thoughts on the match, and he said that since he lost in the previous session he wants to get a win for his team this time around. Shuto said that since last year he’s been able to break through his weakness, and really improved on a lot of things, so he guarantees 100% a victory. Check the tapes to see how that worked out.

The second match was Higuchi Guile vs. Fujimura Luke. Fujimura said that he came up against Higuchi in a tournament recently, and lost so he’s been thinking about strategies against Higuchi since then. He’s looking forward to trying them out. Higuchi says that he’s familiar with Shinobism since he used to be part of the team, and because of that he really wants to win. Fujimura really was important to the team last year, but he wants to beat him so that he can avoid a lecture [from Nemo], and will do his best.

The final match was YHC-Mochi Dhalsim vs. Momochi Cody. Momochi said he’s prepared for Dhalsim, and while people say that Dhalsim is a bad match-up for Cody, he wants to win and invigorate his team. YHC-Mochi says that he wants to play at a distance and not fall into Cody’s explosive up close damage. He thinks he can win, and he’ll do his best.

Shinobism won overall, so they interviewed the team. The first thing Momochi said was “that was great.” He called out his Dhalsim sparring partners (Kona-san and Jijuju-san (?)) and they helped him play a whole bunch. He thought it was still pretty tough up until yesterday, but somehow was able to get a handle on it in time. He also said that last year he didn’t win once when he was in the final Captain’s position, and he thinks he really let the team down because of that. So winning here was important for him. They asked Fujimura about his match with Higuchi, and he said that he really thought that he was well prepared with his adaptations, but in the up close scramble he was too complacent, and Higuchi was able to win. Yamaguchi said that first of all, he wants to apologize to Momochi for how he started out in the first match (he lost). As for this match, it was a really close one, and he’s happy he was able to contribute to the team getting 30 points overall, he’s feeling good about it. Finally they ask Johnny (the reserve player) what he thought, and he says it was huge getting 30 points as the away team. He really thought that watching Cody was a lot of fun with how explosive and damaging that character can be. He says he’s never had a feeling like this of cheering for and supporting people from his heart as much as this before. Momochi says “hey, you were on our team two years ago!” Everyone laughs, and Johnny says “yeah, putting that aside”, he’s really happy with how they won. It’s super fun to watch. Lots of chatter with Yamato and Hameko about how this is his second time around and so on.

The ask Momochi about his thoughts on the next match – Momochi says it is against Gyogun who is their rival team, and he thinks they are the only ones that can stop Mago (or perhaps, he is, Japanese is full of ambiguities when you say stuff like Uchi). That definitely should be a fun one, and I expect Mago to be in full Showman Mode. Also, it’s September.

4.3 Good 8 Squad vs. Team iXA

The first match is Dogura Dictator vs. Crusher Birdie. Crusher said that he lost to Dogura in a 1 on 1 match (probably the recent World Warrior JP event) and he’s looking forward to running it back. Dogura says that their opponent has a strong line-up, but today he’s prepared with a lemon scented (candle? thing?) and will power up with that. This is a reference to previous discussions with Dogura where he talked about how he’s into scents now – I don’t remember where I came across that, but I specifically remember him talking about a citrus scent that he liked, and the commentary team having a surprisingly in-depth conversation about that.

Next up is Gachi-kun Rashid vs. Gunfight Oro. Gunfight said that he had expected Gachi-kun, and he’ll do his best to win. Gachi-kun said he has prepared for the characters that Gunfight uses (Oro and Alex) and he wants to win.

The Captain match is Pugera Boxer vs. Inaba Dictator. Inaba says that this is the second time in a row that his team has let him take the Captain position, so he’ll do his best. He’ll also pray to the Rock God (a reference to previous interviews with Gunfight who always says he prays to the Rock God when playing Oro. Seems like that has influenced the whole team.)

Good 8 Squad won, so the commentary team interviewed them. They said that Dogura got them off to a good start, and asked for his review. He said that he didn’t like how the match went, and even though he won, he feels like he lost. Hameko said that Dogura took over in the second game and that led to victory, but Dogura said that Crusher’s use of Trigger I resources (wow, if you didn’t know this game, I doubt you could figure out what he was saying here – took me a couple of listens) was better than he expected, and he had mostly prepared for Trigger 2, but Crusher wasn’t using that. He thought Crusher was really good, and should have won, but he was able to somehow win. Hameko said that they were surprised in the second game as well as commentators, but the important thing is to get the win.

The commentary team said that looking back it seemed like the match was pretty lopsided for Gachi-kun, but Gachi-kun said that he thought Gunfight was very patient in his offense and did that well, and he wasn’t able to adapt to that and lost at first. His team had advice for him, and he was able to adapt based on that. They asked Pugera about his match, and he said he’s close with Inaba (Inaba-chan he calls him) but this was the first time they fought in this season, it’s been a long time since they’ve played. He felt like they both understand some of each other’s tendencies, and Inaba uses a lot of plus frame situations in his offense and has really developed there. So he was expected that sometimes he would just have to block a lot and couldn’t do anything in those situations, and since he was expecting it he wasn’t panicked, and was able to calmly wait for an opening and take advantage.

They asked the reserve player, Kawano, what he thought. He said “Well, you know I never thought about it before, but just maybe there’s a chance that our team is strong.” The commentary team gets after him a bit – “You just now figured that out?” – well, you know we got 40 just now, etc. They ask Gachi-kun about their next match, he says that they are doing good with points now, but we are chasing after Nagoya Oja, and now we’ve pulled up even with them, and now we can put some pressure on them. We’ll do our best with the DNG team.

5 2022-09-22 JP SFL Section 3 Day 1

5.1 Warmup

Aru is the MC and Hameko the analyst, so back to the standard setup. They did their standard preview of the teams coming up looking at past matches. Then Hameko’s Choice theme is a “Deep Dissection of the SF League”. He says that SF League is getting popular, and it is a good chance to explain things to people who might not know a lot about Fighting Games. So they look at the Street Fighter League website, and explain the info available there – it’s a really good page with links to YouTube videos for all the matches, the results, info on the teams, etc. There’s a button you can click to support the team you want, and stuff like that.

5.2 Shinobism Gaming vs. Gyogun

Fujimura Luke vs. Moke Falke. Moke said he expected this, and he chose Falke for the purpose of beating Luke, and he wants to win (though I would translate it as “expect to win” if I was being loose.) Fujimura says that he came up playing all sorts of games with Moke, and he’s seen all the cards he holds in his hand. He says he will absolutely win, Moke can just try his best and he’d better prepare himself (for the loss).

Next up is Yamaguchi Luke vs. Mago Luke. Aru asks Mago what he thinks of another Luke Mirror match. Mago says he expected to face Momochi, and wonders if Momochi is scared of him. He’s heard that Yamaguchi is good at the mirror match, but he thinks he’s going to keep up his streak of winning in the mirror match this time (with a wicked smile.) Yamaguchi says that he gets a lot of practice in the Luke mirror with Fujimura, and wants to show off that practice with a win.

The final match is Momochi Cody vs. Mizuha Cody. Mizuha said that he practiced the Cody mirror, and he thinks it’s a waste for Momochi to use the mirror match against him because his Luke is so good. Momochi says he thinks this is the first time he’s ever faced Mizuha’s Cody, and he’s looking forward to that. He wants to get the win for his team.

Shinobism was the winning team, so they got the post-game interview. Fujimura said that while he lost, his team is very strong and dependable. He feels bad about losing, will reflect on his loss, get better, and do better in his next match. Yamaguchi said that even though Fujimura lost this time, the team has great confidence in him, and the reason that he was able to beat Mago is because of Fujimura. (Shades of Tokido’s “I have Mago” EVO speech.) They will continue to do their best in the future. They asked Johnny, the reserve player what he thought. He said the day before he wasn’t feeling confident, and so became the reserve, but as a team they keep asking Fujimura to take hard matches, and he wants to be able to go up himself instead.

Aru says that Momochi put himself into the Captain slot the last two times and won both times. He says that they prepared a lot after the match with Saishunkan, and got good results from that. Aru asks about what he thought of the Cody mirror match, and Momochi says that Cody is weak on defense and he was confidence that he could take advantage of that to win. Someone on his team told him to stop lying, and everyone laughed. Hameko asks which Cody has bad defense in the mirror match, Aru says both I guess, neither really believing that Cody has bad defense. Aru asks Momochi about defeating the Shinobism traditional rival team Gyogun, and Momochi says that it was really tough to lose to Gyogun in the SFL finals last year. They definitely will beat Gyogun this year, and the whole team has the same conviction, they all pulled together to beat their rival. Asked about their next match, Momochi says their next opponent is Nagoya OJA Body Stars, and there is quite a point gap between the two and they are the most important team to beat to get to the top. They’ll practice hard to make sure they can do that.

5.3 Nagoya OJA Body Stars vs. v6 Plus FAV Gaming

First up is Fuudo Mika vs. sako Menat. sako says that his opponent is very strong, but he’ll do his best. Fuudo said he was surprised when he say that Torimeshi was practicing so much for Mika, but now he understands (v6 Plus FAV Gaming put Torimeshi Dhalsim in the Captain slot). He says that he’ll win now, and leave beating Torimeshi up to someone else on the team.

Next up is Nari-kun Akira vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido says that he’s practiced a lot since they are the away team, and he’s going to show off all that work. Nari-kun says that Tokido is a strong player that everyone knows is strong, and that everyone thinks he is weak. But he’s going to win here and announce the start of a new era. You could hear Fuudo laughing a bit at the end there. (Nari-kun has always been a bit of a troll.)

The Captain’s match is Akira Cammy vs. Torimeshi Dhalsim. Torimeshi spoke a bit about his previous Captain match against Gyogun and how he’s reflected on that, but he did expect to face Akira and thinks he’ll probably be ok (not said in a super confident way.) Akira says that he’s really happen to even be able to take the Captain’s seat on this team, and he’s going to enjoy it. He’s played the most Dhalsim vs. Cammy matches in all of Japan, and will do his best.

v6 Plus FAV Gaming won so they got the post-game interview. sako said that he was surprised with their opponent’s strategy (they expected Fuudo Mika vs. Torimeshi Dhalsim) but they won as a team, and he’s happy with that. He wants to win his match next time. Aru asks whether Fuudo Mika vs. sako was unexpected, and sako said he didn’t expect Fuudo to face him if he went up in the first slot. They thought he would face Torimeshi. Aru and Hameko said that it looked like he was prepared for Mika though. sako says that Fuudo’s pressure in the latter half was really impressive, and he cracked. They asked Tokido about his match, and he said that he had heard that Nari-kun was very confident in the Luke matchup, and wanted to challenge him. He wasn’t worried though. He wanted to make him feel that people improve and grow on a big stage like this.

Torimeshi said that their plan was to lure Fuudo Mika into a battle with him, and get that 20 points for the win. He practiced the Mika matchup a lot. He did think maybe Akira would go up, and did some practice for Cammy, and that really helped out. They asked Bon-chan how he felt that his team won, and he said “My team won when I didn’t play! Thank you!” with a big laugh. He said their team really is great. He said they put a lot of pressure on Torimeshi, and they practice a lot to make sure everyone on the team is high quality and can potentially be in that Captain slot. He says there aren’t that many opportunities to feel the pressure of that must-win scenario, and when people catch up to you, of course you will feel pressure, but when Torimeshi was up in the opening he responded well and Bon-chan thought we can depend on him. We can depend on him in the future.

They ask sako about their next match, and he says since they were able to win in this away match they want to continue that momentum.

6 2022-09-27 JP SFL Section 3 Day 2

6.1 Warmup

In Hameko’s Choice, he highlights the part in the intro where Storm Kubo screams. And he wonders “What is he screaming about?” So they go to an interview with Team iXA (each team did a Twitter Spaces chat prior to the first day starting, this is an excerpt from one of those) where Storm Kubo said of all the players, he really wants to beat Nemo. And that pose in the intro was his “I’m going to beat you, Nemo!” hype-up routine. Of course, his team is like “wow, really!? Is Nemo listening to this!?” and Storm Kubo says that he’s really indebted to Nemo in a lot of ways, and Nemo has helped him a lot, so it’s more like he wants to show that the student can now beat the master type of thing. He’s chided a bit there for the 180 degree turn-around.

So what he is yelling in that opening scene is “Naoki!” (Nemo’s given name.) Hameko then introduces Nemo’s book. I have a copy and have been reading it for fun – I’m not going to translate or take any notes, but maybe I’ll write someone once I’m through it (no time soon.) Next Hameko introduces some of Nemo and Storm Kubo’s history.

  • 2018 He was on Nemo’s team for the RAGE STREET FIGHTER V All-star League powered by CAPCOM (hey someone has detailed notes about that. Nice.)
  • 2019 He was passed over in the SFL:Pro-JP Operated by RAGE. He was on Nemo’s short list in the interview phase (I wrote a bit about the High Class member selection where Storm Kubo was passed over). I also have detailed notes on the SFL:Pro-JP Operated by RAGE season.
  • 2021 In the draft he faced Moruto in a Dan mirror match, and lost. He wasn’t picked up for that season. See my notes on the 2021 SFL:Pro-JP season here. During the draft and throughout the process Nemo pestered / teased / joked with Storm Kubo a bunch, but in the end didn’t draft him. (Not to joke about it – it was a big let down for Storm Kubo, he was not happy, and I’m really glad he’s repping a team now.)
  • 2022 He’s leading Hiroshima Team iXA.

Then they talked about the Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Hiroshima Team iXA matchup and how they think that might go.

They also talk about the Good 8 Squad vs. Komyufa Detonation Gaming match. I like these pre-analysis breakdowns, talking about which characters are good against whom, and who they think the teams might pick.

6.2 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Hiroshima Team iXA

First up is Shuuto Nemo vs. Inaba Dictator. Inaba says that since he used to use Urien, he’s familiar with the match-up, and thinks he will do well. Shuuto says he’ll win. (Short and to the point.)

Second is Nemo Urien vs. Storm Kubo Alex. The commentary team tells Storm Kubo that his oponent is Nemo – “Naoki” they add – since he had his earphones out. He says that he has a connection – past history – with Nemo, but now that he’s part of the SFL, he just doesn’t have the time to pay attention to Nemo. He’s just looking at this for the points, and looks forward to beating him to get those points. Nemo says that he wants to get this win and contribute that power to his team. He says that he has absolutely no memory of who this Storm Kubo person is. My writing probably doesn’t convey it, but I feel like this is a very funny, and in some way friendly antagonistic interaction.

Interestingly, in the second match we saw the first instance of the Away team changing their character after a loss – Storm Kubo changed to Dan. So that away team disadvantage of having your character declared first is there, but if you have multiple characters you can change.

The final match is Higuchi Guile vs. Gunfight Oro. Gunfight says that, as he expected, he will face Higuchi Guile. As long as his prayers reach the Rock God, he will win. (This running gag is pretty good, the commentary team gets a kick out of it too.) Higuchi says that the Captain slot is very important, and he hasn’t won yet, so he wants to win here and bring that momentum into the next match. He’ll do his best!

Higuchi won, so Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto gets the interview. Higuchi says that he traiend a lot for Oro and was glad he was able to show off some of that work, and while this first win came a bit late, he wants to build on that going forward, and there is still a long road ahead. He’s really happy. While the team won, Shuuto didn’t win his match. They ask him about how it went. He said he really broke down a bit, but Higuchi and Nemo really saved the day. It’s a team battle so there are things that are tough about that, but Higuchi is now Higuchi-san, and he’s still Shuto-kun, so he wants to do better. Higuchi says that isn’t the case (lots of laughs.) YHC-Mochi says he wasn’t able to play, but his teammates did a good job, and it’s their first win and that’s what is important. Nemo says he’s super happy to be surrounded by amazing teammates (this gets lots of laughter from the commentary team.) He doesn’t know what happened in past SFLs (where he was the “Black President” – note that in Japan “Black” companies are ones with really terrible work/life balance, bad pay, employee abuse, and so on) and two years ago Storm Kubo was supposed to be on a team with “him” (Itazan in this case – referred to as “white” to counter Nemo), and he was concerned that he made “him” feel bad. Hameko says that actually, Nemo was the one that was wronged. Nemo says he really has a broken heart.

Nemo says that in their next match they are away, but they want to take this win, and do well there too.

6.3 Good 8 Squad vs. Komyufa Detonation Gaming

Gachi-kun Rashid vs. Itabashi Zangief G. Itabashi says that Gachi-kun is really good on defence, but he’s got the God of Command Grabs backing him up, so he’ll be ok. Gachi-kun says that he’s bumped into Itabashi Zangief a bunch, and they have some bad blood between them, but he’s prepared for it and will have a good match.

Next up is Pugera Bison vs. Nauman Luke. Nauman says that he thinks the time has gone for the God of Command Throws. Pugera says that when practicing with his teammates, they said things like “I can’t believe you play such an shameless character like Boxer”, or “are you really ok playing like that?”, or “Shut up, I just got distracted, I can’t believe that in one small moment of carelessness my entire life was stolen”, they just kept saying that crap over and over. I am absolutely besides myself with anger (literally: my anger is at an ecstatic peak), but if I win, they will buy me some juice so I want to show you all that it isn’t like that. (Note: middle school kids buying each other drinks when they win at games is a common thing.) In the background if you watch Dogura he’s absolutely dying of laughter, and Kawano is having a tough time keeping it together too. Gachi-kun is a jpg (great Infexious impression.)

Second character change of the day, Nauman switched to Laura.

Last up is Dogura Dictator vs. Takeuchi John Cody. Takeuchi John says that he’s also praying to the God of Command Grabs. Dogura says the first two matches were really good, but that Nauman is a dirty cheap, that’s exactly like him, a dirty cheat to counter-pick with Laura. Pugera was able to take care of him. He wants to take care of Takeuchi John, and repeats what Pugera said earlier “Are you really ok playing like that?” Looks like their team is having a lot of fun.

Good 8 Squad gets the win, so they get the interview. They say that Dogura player very well, and ask for his thoughts. He says they decided that if John Cody was in the lineup, he would face him, so he prepared for that. He’s glad he was able to get a good result. Pugera said that he heard Nauman might play Laura, so he prepared a bit for that, and he really thought the first match was important because of that. If there was a character change, he didn’t want it to go that route where it was tied. He said it is a tough matchup, but to be real, he played like a monk (Hameko is like wut? – me too! I might be off on this) and I was able to get good damage with EX meter to win. (Hameko just keeps laughing.)

They ask Kawano for his observations and he said that everyone played well, and even in his loss Gachi-kun played well. Pugera beating Laura was nice. The commentary team asks Kawano what’s up, since he isn’t looking at the camera and seems a bit bashful (I guess?) and he says that he was the one that chose the order, so he’s being a bit humble. Gachi-kun says something that I can’t make out about Kawano – either he said “yatta!” when the won, or he said he would play at first, I just can’t make it out. That’s what you get for free. Gachi-kun goes on to say that he lost, but he’s got a strong dependable team that was able to win, he’s really happy about that. He says they all should say and do what they want. Next up is FAV Gaming Away so there’s a lot more to go.

7 2022-09-30 JP SFL Section 4 Day 1

7.1 Warmup

We’re back with the reliable duo of Aru and Hameko. Aru says that today each team is broadcasting from their Stadium – and first is the Gyogun “Fish Squad Aquarium”. Cute. Hameko’s choice today is Deep Dive Number 3: looking into other Street Fighter tournaments. They talked about the Capcom Pro Tour and SFL primarily. Hameko talked a bit about September Mago and his success in September and October, and how that came from Vicious and James Chen (with an excerpt of the ALL DAYS Mago interview with them.) Hameko is impressed that in an interview with foreigners that Mago is able to come up with such witty replies. Since today is the last day of September, we’re expecting good things from Mago.

Then they transition from Hameko’s choice (nice to see James and Vicious pop up there!) to a preview of the two matchups for today.

7.2 Gyogun vs. Saishunkan Sol Marmot

When asked who would go up against Nemo Urien, Mago made a funny face and spoke in an evil character type of voice “Well, if it’s Nemo’s Urien, then his opponent has to be YOU. Moke Rashid!” and then quickly switched to a normal voice “hey Moke, it’s Rashid right?” which Moke confirmed. Hameko was like, what you didn’t confirm the character in this eventuality? Nemo says that he expected Rashid, but since in the previous session Storm Kubo was talking about Naoki (Nemo’s first name) this and Naoki that all the time, he really wants to win this for Storm Kubo’s sake.

Aru says that Moke is also a Naoki (that’s news to me) so what does he have to say? He wants to show who is the real Naoki. Aru says “So it’s a mirror match of Naokis to decide the winner?” to which Moke replies “Right, we don’t need two Naokis”.

Mago puts his Cammy up for the middle match against Shuto Urien. Shuto says that while the previous match was a mirror match of Naokis, this is also a mirror match (I’m not sure how that is – Shuto’s real name is Matsumoto Shuto, while Mago is Hayshi Kenryou. Also, apparently Mago’s tag was initially “Ago” (chin) because that’s a prominent feature and calls back to the famous Japanese wrester Antonio Inoki, but a magazine misprinted “Ago” as “Mago” and he got famous from that.) He goes on to say that last year when he was not in a good spot, he talked a lot with Mago who advised him, and because of that he has a copy of Mago living within him, a small Mago. And that’s why he was able to win the Topanga Charity Cup and CPT events last year, so he wants to show between those two Magos which is the stronger one. Aru turns to Mago and says that they have a Mago too! Mago says he couldn’t hear what Shuto was saying, but it sounded like a lot of nonsense. Aru summarizes: “He respects you, and from all you taught him last year, he’s got a small Mago inside him so it’s a Mago Mirror”. That cracks Mago up, and he just laughs and says “I’ll do my best”. Which amusingly makes me wonder which Mago will do their best?

Aru says that the small Mago beat the real one at the end of their match! Heh.

Mizuha Cody goes up against Higuchi Guile (this is what Hameko predicted in the preview.) Higuchi says that it’s the Captain match and he wants to do his best, but in the first two matches, there were mirror matches and he thought about whether he had one too, but the more he thought about it was the exact opposite and he hopes that the viewers can enjoy that kind of match too. Mizuha says he has practiced a lot for this match, more than others, and he wants to win.

Higuchi wins, so the away team Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto gets the interview. Nemo was worried when he lost to Rashid, but his teammates came through for the win, so he can sleep soundly tonight. Aru asks “so who is the real Naoki?” Nemo says of course it’s him, since his team won. Shuto says he’s glad he was finally able to show people his strength. And it wasn’t just his win, he talked a lot with the team about strategy, and the win is because of the team. And also the small Mago inside of him. Aru asks whether his small Mago is a teammate, and Shuto says yes, that’s case, and he’s going to continue to continue to win with all 5 of his teammates. Aru asks whether beating teh real Mago is a big deal, and Shuto says that he usually plays based on his own advice, actually that’s Mago’s voice he hears, so he does feel indebted to Mago for that win. They ask YHC-Mochi his thoughts, and he said that while he wasn’t able to play again today, he’ll keep repeating that SFL is a team event, and the team winning is what is important, and our young players pulled it out, so he’ll continue to support from the sidelines. Higuchi says he was somehow able to win, and for lunch he ate fish, and so it feels like he’s doubling up here, but he was able to eat everything, and feels great. He cleaned his plate. Aru says that winning in an away position is big, Nemo replies that he’s happy, and now he has to take Higuchi out for Sushi (they all talk about fish against – Higuchi says he want steak please!) Their next match is away, and since they won today they rose a lot, and he wants to chase after FAV Gaming to get to 2 or 3. Aru says that Shuto’s win was a big contribution to the team, and Nemo says that he thought Shuto had lost confidence, but today’s Shuto looked really strong, and was glad to see that Strong Shuto again.

7.3 Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. Komyufa Detonation Gaming

First up is Crusher Birdie vs. Nauman Luke. Nauman says he’ll do his best to avoid getting Crushed. Heh. Crusher says he’s practiced the Luke matchup a lot, and wants to show that off. This was what Hameko predicted in the Warmup as well.

Second is Inaba Dictator vs. Takeuchi John Cody. Takeuchi John says that since he just lost to Dogura’s Dictator, and it’s a tough match-up for Cody, he really thought a lot about this, and came to a conclusion: now he thinks that Cody is favored in the matchup. Inaba says in response to hearing that Cody in favored in the matchup, he also watched that Dogura – Takeuchi John match, since he expected to face him as well. Now he knows everything about John-kun.

The Captain match is Storm Kubo Abigail vs. Itazan Abigail. Itazan says when he first started to use Abigail he practiced and learned a lot from his old master (Storm Kubo) and he wants to show just how much his already big Abigail has grown. When Aru confirms that, Itazan says his Abigail is still continuing to grow. In response to that (Aru prompts him with Itazan’s Abigail growing bigger and bigger) Storm Kubo says it’s a bit of a tangent, but being called his “old master” feels like an insult, and he’s going to stop Itazan who only came rushing to him for help when Abigail was strong, he’ll show him who the true Abigail is. Aru says that he’ll show him the strength of someone who only uses Abigail? Storm Kubo says, well, I don’t know about only using Abigail (lots of laughs) but he’s going to do his best.

Itazan won, so it goes to the FT1 tie-breaker. Itazan puts up his own Abigail, Storm Kubo puts up Inaba Dictator. He said he really wanted to do his Abigail, but laughing … Itazan said that he prepared for Inaba Dictator in a previous World Warrior event, and thought it might come down to Inaba Dictator for the tiebreaker. He says he knows Everything about Inaba, so he’ll win in a FT1. Inaba says he also wanted to see a leader mirror match, but he’s prepared and wants to win.

Itazan won, so they get the post-game interview. Nauman says that he has many things to reflect on from the match, but Itazan was able to cover for him and he wants to pay back the favor. Takeuchi John says that it’s pretty rough for him to lose when he said his character has the advantage, and he feels really bad but their Captain was able to win, and then win the tie-breaker and really carry them to the win. And he wants to be able to do that too. Thank you Itazan! Uryo thanks Itazan, and while he wasn’t able to play, things went according to plan and he’s fine with that. He’ll do his best to contribute in October. Itazan says he thought “oh I see” when Nauman and Takeuchi John lost, and honestly the match with his ex-Master wasn’t one he was looking forward to. The Abigail mirror is a bitter match, and he was worried about it, but was able to win in the end. And then in the FT1 reminded him of the difficult Sengoku Period of wars in Japan (either a historical reference, or an arcade reference, take your pick) thank you for the FT1 match, and he was able to play how he wanted. Today. He can sleep well tonight. Aru asks about winning in the Away match by shouldering the responsibility for the team as the leader. (Itazan says a lot of stuff yeah, just looking at the opponent in front of us, guess it can look like that if you phrase it that way, etc.) as the leader I was able to pull through. Asked about the next match, they have a week, he says in September they (mumble mumbler) and SFL is long, they have October coming up. (Something like that.)

8 2022-10-04 JP SFL Section 4 Day 2

8.1 Warmup

We have Yamato and Hameko on commentary today.

Hameko’s Choice talked about the Grand Final for the previous SFL: Pro-JP with Good 8 Squad vs. v6 Plus FAV Gaming (coincidentally – or more likely completely intentionally) the matchup today.

They talked through some of the matches – particularly talked about how Ryusei’s win over Pugera with Urien (who Tokido on Ryusei’s team also played) was important for them getting points to bring it to a draw as the away team. In the climax Tokido Urien beat Gachi-kun Rashid for the win. Then they talked about today’s matchup with the same two teams, how they are both highly ranked.

Then they went into a preview of the matchup, talked about who might go up against whom and so on. They repeated that for the second match of the night, Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Shinobism Gaming.

8.2 v6 Plus FAV Gaming vs. Good 8 Squad

First up is sako Menat vs. Kawano Kolin. They asked Kawano for his thoughts, and he said that Dogura was supposed to go first, but actually decided that it wasn’t smelling good for him (referring back to his past discussion of all his different scents he uses to get hype) and so he is up instead. sako says that this might just be the only favorable matchup for Menat against their opponent’s team, so he’ll do his best.

The second match is Tokido Luke vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun says that since he lost to Tokido in the previous SFL Grand final, he’s of course been paying a lot of attention to him, so he wants to decisively win here. Tokido says that he’s extremely well prepared for Rashid, with the help from his Rashid training partners.

The final match is Bon-chan Luke vs. Pugera Boxer. Pugera says that this is a very difficult match for his team in the away position, and he’s been allowed to take the important final position. He lost to Bon-chan last year (I think he means in the previous SFL Pro-JP Grand Final).

Then things get strange and hard to understand. I honestly didn’t understand what he said. Something like: 昔からあれをしているはいほうをスクリーンじょら掛け声があるそれを反芻しながら – here Aru breaks in and says “I’m sorry, I can’t understand what you are saying”. I’ve been over this a bunch, I really don’t know what is going on, but I think he’s talking about since a long time ago (that loss) he had some image (projected / screenshot / poster) of that, and he sits down in the lotus position maybe screaming and reflecting on that loss. Not sure what “haihou” – possibly the pulmonary alveoli – is doing in there. He basically repeats the same thing, and Yamato says something like “I can’t believe what this guy says before the match and then it’s just over” – Hameko says “Well, it would be really bad if he loses now” – kind of speaking over Pugera who continues “reflecting on that as I win.” (more literally “want to win” but “as I win” fits a lot better with the vibe.)

I wouldn’t be unhappy if Good 8 Squad stopped Pugera from doing interviews, but he’s super amusing so I doubt it will happen.

Bon-chan says (after all that) I don’t think we’ll lose at home twice in a row. I’ll win and get 20 points. No, I’ll get 25 points because I’ll win the Captain slot and the tie breaker.

At least Hameko repeats that he didn’t know what Pugera was talking about either, so I’m not alone. (Though he certainly has a much better idea than I do.)

Good 8 Squad wins, so they get the interview. They first ask Kawano about his win, he says that he really wasn’t expecting to play today, but in the morning Gachi-kun messaged him and said that he thinks Kawano should play. So I woke up and was depressed, but I did prepare, and I’m glad that preparation paid off. (Someone said, wait aren’t you the manager?) to which Kawano and everyone else laughed. Someone said you must have been very nervous. Kawano replied that it has been a long time that he joined as a player, and he apologizes for doing so as their star player in the opening bout.

Gachi-kun says that, like Kawano said, in the morning he messaged him, and he’s really relieved now that Kawano won. Tokido is the player that he most wants to beat in this game, and did a lot of prep that he’s glad for. They ask how he feels getting the sweep against v6 Plus FAV Gaming who is their main rival. Of course he’s super happy about it, especially because they lost to them in the Grand Finals, so this win here is great, but he wants to feel that joy again when they win in the Grand Finals.

They ask how Pugera feels and he says something from that word salad he had before (something screen jyora). He thought that since he’s lost in multiple tournaments to Tokido Urien, that would be really tough, and because of that maybe he couldn’t be the Captain, but even with that concern, he had to go up in that slot. That was tough for him, but they started from the position that if he is up last and they think he’s waiting for Urien, maybe it wouldn’t go like that. It didn’t come up this time, but I did a lot of preparation and I was confident about it. I really wanted to redeem myself after the loss in the Grand Finals, and show that I’ve progressed. (Then he said “Hai”, “Hoi”, “Dosukoi”, and “Enjyooorrrrraaa” with rolling Rs.)

Dogura says that the reason Kawano went up is because he has a really terrible feel for the Dhalsim matchup, and he’s sorry about that but talking with the team everyone thought it was best for Dogura to sit out in the back seat. Since they were able to get 40 points in the Away slot, he really thinks their team is the best.

Gachi-kun says this week they have FAV and Nagoya, and they are coming up, so they are going to do their best to beat them.

8.3 Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Shinobism Gaming

First up is Akira Cammy going up against Yamaguchi Luke, who says he wants to win so that the people coming after him can play with confidence and more easily win themselves. Akira says that he thinks Yamaguchi’s forgotten the Cammy matchup and he wants to remind him of it once again.

The second match is Daigo Guile against Fujimura Luke. They cut over to Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom for the pick, and Daigo was saying “There’s not mistake about it” – whatever the conversation was, probably deciding who to put up. He sounded very confident. Fujimura says he expected Guile and prepared heavily for this. The production team cuts to Daigo, who looks around for a bit, says “hm?” they ask if Daigo can hear them, he just looks around, purses his lips a bit, looks pretty nonchalant. Akira says he doesn’t hear them, commentary says maybe he’s just concentrating too hard, then all of a sudden Daigo points at himself and says “what, me?” They say that they want some comments from him before the match, and he’s like “oh! I practiced a lot, and want to win!” He could hear the whole time but was just spaced out.

Fuudo takes the Anchor spot against Momochi. Momochi says he was a bit nervous that maybe they’d send Nari-kun against him, but it’s Fuudo Poison. (I vaguely remember Momochi trying to talk up in streams and tweets that he was worried about Nari-kun, and nobody believing him since they thought he was just trying to get a favorable match.) They are of the same age, and Fuudo has better results than he does now, he’s a very strong player, and Momochi thinks of him as a rival. He wants to win for his team, and for himself. Fuudo says that when he won Topanga League, he thought that then Cody had the advantage in the Cody – Poison matchup, but this time he’s had a lot of time, and with that he can bring it up to at least 5-5. So he wants to show that it’s a doable matchup now.

Fuudo takes it, so Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom gets the final interview. They say that they think that anchor match was tough, but want to hear Fuudo’s thoughts. Fuudo thinks he made a few mistakes here and there that he needs to reflect on, but with the Pipe v-trigger, Momochi kept going for the command grab, and he could really read that from Momochi. There’s no way he would get caught by that. He thought it was great that he was able to get that read.

They ask Akira about his win in the first match, and he said when he lost once, he thought going back to the Christmas costume moved the match-up back to his favor. (lol) It was a way to get a fresh start, and he really practiced the Luke matchup, so he’s happy about it.

Aru asks whether Daigo can hear him this time, to which he promptly replied that he can. They ask about his match with Fujimura even though he lost, and he says yeah, Fujimura was really strong, but it made him want to play the match more. He thought he put up a good fight, it’s not like he just wants to do it to win, but he wants to play more to practice more and that motivation reminds him of how he used to be, so he really thought it was a good match. The commentary agrees, and says he’s likely to run into more Lukes (didn’t mention how US SFL is almost entirely Lukes.)

They ask Nari-kun what he thought, and he brings out a bag of Baby Star Ramen snack (a snack made from dried Ramen noodles that the corporate company Nagoya OJA is well known for) and says that since they won, he really thinks the Baby Star tastes great (taking a mouthful, then a big gulp of Red Bull.) Thank you!

Finally they ask Akira about the next match – he barely had time to pull himself together since he was cracking up at Nari-kun’s antics. He says that they Mascot Nari-kun is hyping them all up, so they are going to take that spirit into their next match and do their best.

9 2022-10-07 JP SFL Section 5 Day 1

9.1 Warmup

Today we get Aru as the MC, and Nanai on analysis. Hameko was scheduled, but he wasn’t feeling well, so Nanai subbed in. Nanai has been around for a while – he has been doing e-Sports stuff as his main job two or three years back, and has has a YouTube Channel with a V-tuber avatar. He was doing commentary at the tournaments at Akihabara e-Sports Square at the weekly SFV events back when they started up – at least for as long as I’ve been going, so like back in 2016 at least. He’s a nice guy, I’m really happy to see him when he’s on the mic, and he’s been getting more stuff in fighting games and outside of them too. Definitely an insider.

I thought I’d pay a bit more attention to the warm-up today, since Viscous was interested in what the predictions were for the wild Dhalsim mirror we get. I’ll often watch the English stream live or first, and then go back to watch the Japanese stream because I enjoy the English commentary, makes it more fun and easy. I love the insight from the Japanese interviews and commentary too though, so I go back to watch that. Or do it the other way around.

The initial part of the Warmup this week started with some banter about Hameko’s choice – Nanai has seen them all and said they were “extremely popular” to which Aru was a bit credulous. I wonder; the Warmup is aimed at people that are new to fighting games and street fighter, and my guess is that people watching SFL are pretty invested already. I think having an entry point for people new to the scene is great though, and not a bad idea.

They also talk about how they are broadcasting from FAV ZONE (one of the home teams) and I only just now got that it’s kind of a joke because they are talking about the virtual stage which is definitely somewhere in Tokyo, even though Aru said it “smells like Tokorozawa” (FAV’s home territory.)

They introduce “Nanai’s Choice” even though the graphics are Hameko’s choice. In this case, Nanai says he will do the best to analyze 3 scenes that Hameko chose. 3rd best is sako Menat vs. Moke Rashid, with a subtitle of “Is it even possible to prepare for sako’s Menat?” It’s supposed to be a tough match for Menat (I don’t know enough about it myself.) They have the audio for both teams on a bit – this comes from the SFL: ReActions short pieces that are up on YouTube and twitter, so they also subtitle who’s saying what, they are very nice. sako’s team talked about how he did a great job escaping the corner, and a few other points. People are saying that sako’s strong this season. The 2nd was Dogura Dictator vs. Takeuchi John. John’s been really strong lately, in the interviews from that game Dogura was talking about how his team was teasing him for using Dictator, but Gachi-kun afterwards said that he’s got the green light to play as dirty as he likes. Nanai is also a Dictator main, and they talk about how he doesn’t have any really bad matchups, and is key for some teams (Dogura, Inaba) and is a reliable character to anchor with. As an extra before #1 they show a clip from Nemo vs. Storm Kubo, talking about their relationship – I wrote about that in the episode it showed up in. The best bout was Fuudo vs. YHC-Mochi, and talked about a point where YHC-Mochi did CA, but Fuudo v-reversal’d it. He actually didn’t think that would work, and thought he got hit, but by chance it happened to connect before the CA hit him – he it happened he screamed out “sorry!” and he apologized for making everyone on his team nervous with that. Then they talked about Fuudo’s strong performance.

In today’s match we have v6 Plus FAV gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto, and the first thing Nanai calls out is that both teams have a Dhalsim. They also point out FAV’s two Lukes, and heard Tokido was polishing up the Guile match, so they expect him to face Higuchi, or Aru thinks Menat maybe. They call out Nemo’s Falke and how that works well against Luke, but Bon-chan has been playing against Uriens and Falkes so that might happen. Nanai thinks they might see the Dhalsim mirror.

The second match is Good 8 Squad vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom. They expect Kawano to take on Akira Cammy or Nari-kun Akira, and expect Nari-kun to come out first since that is a bit better against Kolin. They expect Dogura vs. Fuudo. Pugera Boxer probably will go up against Daigo Guile.

That’s it! Pretty good guesses actually.

9.2 v6 Plus FAV Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto

Tokido Luke vs. Higuchi Guile is up first. Higuchi said that he expected Tokido, and has prepared for anything that Tokido throws at him. He wants to continue his winning streak. Tokido says that they lost 0-40 previously and he wants to decisively win here and turn things around.

sako sends up Torimeshi Dhalsim against YHC-Mochi Dhalsim. Wild. YHC-Mochi says that he expected this, and while Torimeshi is really good at the mirror match, he’s not going to give up easily, and has prepared as well. He’ll do his best. Aru asks Torimeshi about the mirror, and he says that he thinks YHC-Mochi prepped for Luke, while the Dhalsim mirror match is 5-5, he’s played a lot of it and thinks he has the advantage. He wants to blow him up for thinking about Luke and win.

The anchor match is sako Menat vs. Nemo Urien. Nemo says he really expected Bon-chan. He says he’s confident in the Menat match though, and wants to win here to get 30 points. sako says that back in a previous SFL he when he was on Umehara Gold he played Menat against Nemo’s Urien (on Nemo Aurora) and he should remember that (sako won 2-0 based on my notes from back then). He’s practiced a lot this time, and will win (and he did, 3-0 this time.)

Aru asks Tokido what he thought, and Tokido says (in an exaggerated manner) “That was super exciting!” He says he got caught up in the spirit of things cheering on his team. Looking back, he screwed up (broke a nail) but the others on his team had good matches, and he’s thankful for that. When they ask Torimeshi for his thoughts, he said that they had decided way in advance that he would take on YHC-Mochi, and he asked other Dhalsims for practice and got lots of responses. Since he hadn’t played YHC-Mochi himself though, he was still a bit uncertain, but he was able to win and instantly cleared up all that uncertainty and feels great about it. He goes on to say that the Dhalsim that gets ahead on damage really has the upper hand, so he really went in hard on the offensive and sometimes went too far (and lost some rounds). He was able to win quickly in the end though (with a perfect.)

Aru asks Bon-chan what he thought as the stand-by player, and Bon-chan makes a super happy grin saying “we won, right? We won!” Sure, he wasn’t able to play this time, but that was the strategy. He just sometimes by complete and total chance doesn’t play, and the people that do did their jobs, and they got the win. sako says that he got really good advice from his training partner Hajime-chan (Tokido). When asks about getting the 30 point win, sako says well they just did their jobs (they’re the home team) and they want to keep winning from here. Aru says that he thinks that sako’s Menat is just looking too strong, and is he working too hard at it? sako says he really is putting a lot of time and effort into it, but also maybe people have forgotten how to handle Menat. Apparently “sako” made it up #8 on twitter trends.

9.3 Good 8 Squad vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom

The first match is Pugera Boxer vs. Daigo Guile. Daigo says he practiced a lot, and wants to have a good match. Aru asks if Daigo is going to shift into a higher gear for this match, and Daigo asks “What’s a Gear?” (laughs all around.) I think he did that intentionally, he’s got a knowing smile on, but it is hard to tell with Daigo. I always feel like he’s a little bit out of it, or focusing on something normal people wouldn’t notice. Pugera says that he had lots of chances to face Diago last year, and towards the end he was losing. He wants to keep on challenging (himself? Daigo? who knows!) until he wins. Nanai and Aru talked about how Boxer is probably a bit favored in the match, but Daigo was able to beat him lately in tournaments. Daigo takes the win.

The middle match is Dogura Dictator vs. Akira Cammy. Akira says that he’s always been a Dogura fanboy (literally that choice of words!) and last year I was almost shoegazing super hard he was able to help me so much and I am eternally grateful for that (Akira was on Dogura’s team last year) but now I just want to walk all over him. A real sudden turn in how he changed his intonation to be all dismissive quickly. In response Dogura says that last year he really thought that he and Akira were good friends that went through hell and high water together (my translation of 苦楽を共にする a neat expression I just learned) and since we are on different teams now, I think we should both put our best into having a good match that neither of us will regret.

Nanai says even though Dictator has the advantage he really expected Kawano to take it, so maybe they really are going for points. Dogura takes it (Akira did get one game though, which does count for something in this setup – game wins is a tie-breaker.)

Kawano Lucia is up against Fuudo Poison. They cut in and the team was talking – they seemed surprised by Lucia, and Fuudo said he didn’t expect Lucia. He said maybe he might lose actually, but he’s looking forward to it – Aru asks if he’s intrigued by the choice, and he says he’s interested in it. Daigo says “Maybe you should go back to character select with each game, use it to collect some information.” Daigo says he’ll investigate some stuff at the same time too. I’m not sure if the team knew that was the interview section, but Aru swaps over to Kawano. He says that Kawano’s chance has finally come, and Kawano says it’s been a long time, and he wants to “stop being human”. That’s a little hard for me to understand, because that’s usually something people say when they want to give up, quit, or commit suicide. I think this is in reference to people saying that Kawano’s reactions and punishes are inhuman though, so I’ll go with that. As a reminder, I’m not a translator, this is just a hobby, you can only trust what I write for as far as you can throw me (and I’m fat.)

I’m curious what Nanai and Aru say about the Lucia choice, it was a surprise when I watched it the first time. Nanai says that nobody expected that, and even Fuudo would find it interesting if he does lose (and boy, he got washed.) Nanai also says that the “I want to stop being human” was probably a reference to his whiff punishes (I got one right!) They do say that Lucia can put on good pressure, especially when in V-trigger, and can carry you from corner to corner. After that first game, they really thought Kawano brought our Lucia’s strengths. The chat is saying things like “He gave up his humanity!” Lots of talk on commentary around frame data – guess they have FAT open. Nanai is shocked, and wonders who could have predicted this. Aru does mention that Tachikawa is an exclusive Good 8 Squad sparring partner (I thought I tweeted about that when he announced that he was signed as an exclusive Good8Squad sparring partner – but I couldn’t find it. Tachikawa is also good friends with Kawano, and he mains Poison now.) Kawano really whupped Fuudo there, it was almost a complete shut-out. Aru and Nanai both seem shocked, particularly since apparently all that anti-Poison training was done offline so nobody saw any of it on CFN.

Since Good 8 Squad won, they get the interview. First Aru asks Pugera about his match (that he lost). He said that there were some things he did well, and things he did poorly, and particularly off of his misses he started to get a bit panicked, and you could see the gap between him and Daigo in that last round. He still has some things to work on. He thinks he will have another chance with Daigo, and he’ll practice for that opportunity. Aru asks if he means more specific anti-Guile tech? It looked like Pugera would say something, then he backed off “nothing, nothing”. (It wasn’t clear if Aru was repeating and clarifying what he said or asking a question – I wasn’t sure myself.) Apologies, and they go to Dogura.

Dogura is wearing some granny glasses – look like reading glasses with that chain to retain them, but he has the chain hanging straight down, not around his neck. Dogura says that he was thinking back to all the practice games they played, and while he was able to win in the end, it was a hearty battle full of emotion. Aru asks “there were lots of things to think about while playing?” Dogura says, right, it went about how he expected, but the one thing he wants to say is that the next time he sees Fuudo he’s sure he’ll hear something about that Lucia pick (I think, typically as with Japanese the subject isn’t mentioned – just that Fuudo will give him some crap, and I suspect it is about that.) Nanai asks if they decided in advance whether Dogura would face Akira’s Cammy if that came up, and Dogura said no, last night and this morning that he thought he had a good handle on the Cammy match, and they talked about it as a team. Dogura makes a funny mustache with the glasses chain. Dogura says that he bought that glasses chain recently, and shows how that really, it is supposed to go back around his neck, but he said that’s kind of annoying so he just lets it hang down in front of his face.

Aru asks Gachi-kun whether this is the first time he didn’t play, and Gachi-kun says last year he played each time, so this is the first time. Actually, it seems even more nerve-wracking this way, but the team decided that Pugera should face Guile, Dogura Cammy, and they’ll probably talk to Kawano next but he was putting in work on Poison for a very very long time, and since they went that way, they were able to get this win. Anyway, he wants to do whatever it takes to win.

Turning to Kawano, Aru says that he really made a big splash in SFL. Kawano laughs and says he expects teams to prepare for Lucia moving forward. Aru says “well, you think they should prepare for Lucia, but you have other characters too” and Kawano says “well yeah I have others – ” and Gachi-kun breaks in “that’s enough, stop right there!” Pugera says that anyway Lucia has the “green light”. Kawano says that he played a lot of matches with Tachikawa and Pugera (who also has a Poison), but actually the amount of time they can spend is limited, so he also played a lot against the CPU to figure out what combo routes to use. He thinks it was a good result for today. Aru says that it is rare to see such a clean and clear victory in fighting games, and Nanai says a big win like that is important in a long-running league battle like this. Kawano says that it started about a month ago, but really his main character Kolin is hard to use (there was an exchange with him and MenaRD on twitter (or perhaps they were talking about it at eXeField Akiba when he was out there, I was around and vaguely remember hearing that discussion) that Mena was saying he thinks Kolin can win a tournament, but is hard to rely on exclusively in SFL, which Kawano agreed with. Kawano goes on to say that in an open tournament or FT2 he can use Kolin but it is hard here. He also thinks that Fuudo is one of the strongest people in SFL, and he worked on Lucia because of that.

Turning back to Gachi-kun, he says that this week they have FAV Gaming and Nagoya which are both high placed teams that they want to beat. He’s really happy they were able to end in the positive side for the week. In two weeks they have Gyogun and Saishunkan which ends out the first half of the season. They’ll prepare for those to end out the season on a strong note.

Aru and Nanai chat a bit about the FGC, and the lengths someone will go to defeat one person.

10 2022-10-11 JP SFL Section 5 Day 2

10.1 Warmup

Aru is subbing in for Hameko on the analysts’ seat (Hameko tested positive for CORONA and is out for a bit – he’s doing better but had a cough so bad he couldn’t sleep. He said the SF6 beta was a real help there) with Yamato as the MC.

For “Aru’s Choice” he wanted to highlight the best battles from last time, but there were so many great ones. He talked about the Dhalsim mirror, and how much Torimeshi’s dive kicks were on point, and then just how good sako’s Menat was prepared for Nemo’s Urien to get a 3-0 win. Aru think sako’s Menat is just looking super practiced and good. Aru talked about how much Pugera was prepped for Guile, but then Daigo really was able to adapt and slowly chip away at Pugera. For Dogura Dictator against Akira Cammy, who is super great at approaching from the air, Dogura was really able to handle that well, he’s a real pillar for their team. They talked about Kawano and how he hasn’t played much but he really popped as the surprise pick with Lucia to take out Fuudo’s strong Poison. Now people are going to have to pay attention to that Lucia, and they really liked how he was able to get so good at that match without people noticing.

For the match-up predictions, they expect Shinobism to put up Luke, Luke, Cody as the away team, and not have G come up. They expect either Crusher or GunFight to go up against Luke. Or maybe Storm Kubo’s Alex, in the WW he went up against Momochi’s Luke. For Cody, they expect Inaba Dictator to take that. While Momochi has been the anchor often, they think it will probably be one of the Lukes this time.

In Match 2 with DNG vs. Gyogun, based on Machabo’s CFN Aru thinks he’s prepared for any characters. Mizuha probably won’t go up because of Itabashi, and Cody doesn’t have a good match up with G. Probably either Mago or Moke will be the Anchor, but probably Moke with Falke because Nauman’s Luke will have trouble with that. So probably Nauman and Machabo. But Uryo Rose might show up – Itazan G can take out Rashid, so they aren’t sure what will happen with Uryo. And breaking news: Momochi has been practicing Akira so maybe he will be the anchor with Akira.

10.2 Hiroshima Team iXA vs. Shinobism

The first match is Fujimura Luke vs. Gunfight Oro. Fujimura says that the opposing team has some really rare characters, and it was hard for him to prepare for them, but he thoroughly did so, and will do his best. Gunfight said that he did as much prep as humanely possible for Luke, and will do his best with Oro. He punctuates that with the now-traditional Team iXA prayer to the Rock Gods hand sign.

The second match is Crusher Birdie vs. Yamaguchi Luke. Yamaguchi says he practiced the Birdie matchup a lot, is very confident about it, and will win here, and leave the rest up to Momochi in the Anchor position. Crusher counters with (an echo heavy) saying that it has been a while since he’s played Yamaguchi, and is looking forward to it. He’s practiced a lot and will do his best.

The Anchor match is Inaba Dictator vs. Momochi Cody. Momochi says that he’s gunning for 40 points since the previous two players carried the baton for him to get 20. If I win, we’ll get all 40 points so I’m very motivated. So far in SFL JP Dictator has won in Dictator – Cody matches (Dogura and Inaba), so he wants to show what he can do with Cody. Inaba says that he won before against Takeuchi John’s Cody, and thinks he’s ok against Cody. He’ll do his best.

Shinobism got the win (convincingly with the full 40 point sweep.)

Yamato and Aru talk a little bit about how Momochi won even if Team iXA tried to counter with Dictator. Aru said that even though Inaba had great anti-airs, he wasn’t able to win. Asked about the win, Momochi said it was a really important one, especially since in the match against Nagoya OJA Body Stars he lost in the Anchor position, and they didn’t do well overall. Even with that, the team let me take the Anchor spot tonight, and I really wanted to (restore that faith to) my teammates. Today Fujimura and Yamaguchi both won, and I wanted to continue that inertia, so it was really good to win.

Turning to Fujimura, he says that lately whether he’s asleep or awake, he’s playing Street Fighter, everyone on this team. Everyone’s working really hard, and this is paying off. Yamaguchi says that he lost previously to Akira Cammy playing Nagoya OJA Body Stars, and so he really wanted to win this time. He got a lot of Birdie info from Shiftne (a young – 17 or 18 now? Birdie player) and he was able to execute on the things he practiced. They ask Johnny what he thought from the sidelines, and says it wasn’t clear up until last night whether he or Yamaguchi would play, but in the end he didn’t have the confidence and so Yamaguchi went up. Everyone played really well, and I’m happy they got the 40 points, but he feels bad that he’s a burden on the team since he hasn’t played for a month. He wants to contribute himself soon too.

Finally they go back to Momochi to ask about the next match, against FAV Gaming, he thinks they got a lot of motivation from this match and want to defeat FAV gaming next.

10.3 Komyufa Detonation Gaming vs. Gyogun

The first match is Takeuchi John Cody vs. Mago Luke. Mago says something that I can’t follow. Sounds like he mispronounced something when he was trying to talk in a real tough voice rolling his Rs, and everyone laughs a bit (what? wasn’t I calm? he replied) and then in a more normal manner that Machabo is the anchor, and he thinks that will surprise everyone watching, but after thinking about things a lot, he really thinks this is a good order. He’ll go out with an energetic first game to get the win. Takeuchi John says he couldn’t understand what Mago said something about biting or not biting, but whatever he’s going to do his best to win.

Aru does say that Machabo as the anchor is a bit of a surprise, but first thing is to get this first match done. Mago gets the win.

Next up is Uryo Rose vs. Moke Falke. Moke said that he did practice thinking that Uryo might come up, and he’ll do his best. Uryo said he got a lot of help from lots of different Falke players, and he’ll do his best. In the end, Moke brought it back with his Rashid after losing with Falke for the win.

The Anchor match is Nauman Luke vs. Machabo Necali. Machabo says that he got lots of practice with his teammates and had lots of fun, and is looking forward to winning in a sweep. Nauman says that not much good has happened for him after his personal win in the first game they played, so he wants to win here and build up confidence for the rest of the league battles. It came down to the final match, final round, and Nauman could have won with a CA chip-out, but for some reason did an EX DP instead of CA. Man that must be heart-breaking.

Gyogun got the 40 point win (and as the away team!), so they get the final interview. They talk with Machabo first, and he says he can’t believe that he won. This was their 2nd win as a team, but they haven’t won much lately, so getting 40 points as an away team is amazing. When they ask Mago he says “Well, I thought we would win” (he’s talking strange again – trying to do an impression of someone) and the commentary team asks who is he trying to imitate? Mago sheepishly replies that it was an impression of Itabashi Zangief (maybe – maybe I can see it a little if you say so, but not really.) Lots of laughs. He’s happy that they won, and everyone worked hard, of course they totally could have lost, and it comes down to the team. 40 points is really important, but we could have got 0 points. Having Machabo go last was risky, but he was able to win, and since he won he thinks that bodes well for him in the future.

They ask Moke about Uryo Rose. He says during the match he was so nervous that his body temperature started to drop, but fate was with him and they won. He just really loves Machabo right now! He thought that was amazing, he’s super happy for the team, it’s a great day today. They ask Mizuha his thoughts, and he wasn’t sure what they would do against their opponent but their strategy worked out, and he’s really grateful for his teammates.

Finally they go back to Mago who says it has been tough up until now, but getting 40 points as the away team is great motivation. Their next team is supposed to be pretty strong, but they want to win.

11 2022-10-14 JP SFL Section 6 Day 1

11.1 Warmup

Today we have Aru and Nanai. This time they have a “Nanai’s Choice” logo graphic, so there’s what a week will get you. Production for JP SFL has been great overall. Today’s “Nanai’s Choice” is about players that have a past history. The first up is Nemo and Itazan. They talk a bit about their personality differences, and have a roll of well-known handshakes. They’ve got 17 years of experience which is pretty amazing when you think of it. They also talk about Nemo hatred of grapplers, and how Itazan is really good at just smiling and taking that grappler hate as an easygoing guy, but he’s super serious when playing. They talk about the SFL last year when Nemo was up, and Itazan said he didn’t want to do it, but he put himself up against Nemo (SFL: Pro-JP 2021 Section 4 Day 2) and Nemo won, then had quite the performative pop-off with his antics on the webcam (shows cuts to Itazan on his webcam.) So while they are both pros, they also have a performative aspect.

In the preview of the two teams, they expect Johnny’s G to go up against Dhalsim, likely in the Anchor spot. Tokido’s Luke and Bon-chan’s Luke are both dependable, but sako has been on a roll lately. Tokido also has Urien that can deal with Cody well, so they expect Tokido Momochi.

The second match is Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Komyufa DetonationN, where they think Uryo won’t play since DNG is away and Dhalsim could handle that match well. They expect Cody, Luke, and G to show up for DNG, perhaps YHC-Mochi would take Nauman’s Luke, and Higuchi would go after Itazan’s G. Shuto has also beaten Takeuchi John in the past so that might happen too, and most likely that would be the Anchor. Nanai and Aru are looking forward to seeing Uryo Rose, even though that might not happen today.

11.2 Shinobism Gaming vs. v6 Plus FAV gaming

First up is Yamaguchi Luke vs. Bon-chan Sagat. Bon-chan says that he’s got wings (RedBull gives you wings). He wanted to play last week, but his opponent didn’t play so he didn’t play, so this week as the away team he wants to go wild. Yamaguchi says that truthfully he doesn’t like playing against Sagat, but that’s on him, and he’s going to do his best to win. Yamaguchi wins.

The middle match is Momochi Cody vs. Tokido Urien. Tokido says that even as away, he prepared a lot for Cody and wants to show us some new stuff there. Aru says that Tokido looks prepared for Cody, to which Momochi replies that last time he was beaten by Tokido’s Urien, and since then he’s really practiced for this matchup. If he can execute his strategy he thinks he can win. Momochi was able to do just that.

The Anchor match is Johnny G against Torimeshi Dhalsim. Torimeshi is glad he’s able to play and in the Anchor match at that. He was preparing for Momochi Cody or Johnny G, and would have preferred Cody, but as expected it’s the G. G’s is a bit tough, and he doesn’t really want to do it, but he’ll show us what he has practiced. Johnny says since Yamaguchi and Momochi already got him 20 points, he’s a bit nervous but recently he’s had the same recurring dream: it’s just like a normal dream’s contents, but for some reason everyone in it has stretchy arms and legs. That’s how much he’s been training. It paid off, he won 3-0.

Since Shinobism got the sweep, they get the final interview. They start with Yamaguchi, who says he wasn’t sure if he would play today right up to the end, and thought about asking Fujimura to go in, but Fujimura said he could do it. That calmed him down, and he played, but he did not expect Sagat at all, and was worried about that, but was able to win. He was really impressed with Johnny’s win, and appreciates that.

Momochi says that watching the matches today he was really moved, Johnny’s play against Dhalsim was great. He had confidence in his team, and thought that Torimeshi would be in the Anchor slot, and Johnny initially said he wasn’t comfortable in the final spot, but as they worked at it he got more confident. It went better than Momochi expected. Aru said that Momochi looked confident in his match too, and he said since he lost to Tokido before and he did really poorly, disappointed the fans that were cheering for him, he absolutely did not want to repeat that. So he played a lot of the Urien matchup, and was able to execute.

They ask Fujimura what he thought. He said that Yamaguchi really was nervous right up to the end, but if he played as well as he had in practice and still lost, that’s fine. He’s really happy that he did well. Johnny was also amazing, he thought they had a good order, but everyone played perfectly. Momochi interjects: “You even said ‘who is that guy’ while they were playing!” (Commentary: there’s someone on your team that you haven’t seen before!) I didn’t think he would be able to play that well, and I really have faith in him.

Going to Johnny, he says he hadn’t played for a month, and he’s asked a lot of people for practice. He’s been practicing Dhalsim for about a month, and he’s really happy he was able to do so well. He thanks Kona-san and Jyujyujyu-san, and people that he invited late at night all of sudden. He was able to win from all that practice. Aru says that he can stop having those dreams of people with stretchy limbs, and Johnny laughs and says he hopes so. Aru asks Johnny for a comment to his fans since he hasn’t played in so long, he says he hasn’t been able to stream from all the practice, and thanks people. He’s also been doing his best to diet lately, but he thinks he might eat well tomorrow.

Finally they go back to Momochi and ask about their next match since they just picked up 40 points. He says that they were able to get 40 points from iXA last time, and 40 points from FAV this time without dropping a set, so they’re really motivated. DetonatioN is next, and thinks they are a rival, and their team looks a lot like theirs with G, Cody, Luke, so he really doesn’t want to lose and is aiming for 40 more points.

Nanai was impressed that everyone they talked to spoke highly of Johnny. Aru says it seems like the whole team has gotten stronger.

11.3 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Komyufa DetonatioN

The first match is Higuchi Guile vs. Nauman Luke. Nauman said that since they are the away team, he practiced as much as he could, but Higuchi is a really strong opponent but if he gets stomped here he still really wants to keep on doing his best. Higuchi says this is an unexpected order, but he’s going to calmly play things out and go for the win. It was close, but Higuchi got the win.

Next up is Shuto Urien vs. Takeuchi John Cody. Takeuchi John says that Momochi was able to beat Urien earlier (just earlier in the first match!) and since we have a repeat of that match-up, he’d like to do the same. He’ll do his best. Shuto says in response to Cody beating Urien that he was practicing with Momochi up until yesterday, and Momochi was able to win because of that. He also wants to win. Momochi is the best Cody, and he is the best Urien. That is all. (Hm! Interesting stuff. I can see why practicing with someone on another team to help them can actually help yourself as well.) The commentary team seems a bit surprised – Momochi is his ally in this case!? Shuto won, so it looks like he was right in that case.

The Anchor match is YHC-Mochi Dhalsim vs. Uryo Rose. Uryo said that since his teammates were gracious enough to let him have the Anchor position, he will win. YHC-Mochi says that he played Uryo 10 or 12 years ago in a FT10 at a big tournament, and this is the first time since then that they’ve played on a big stage. He’s really happy about that. He thinks that he’s learned how to handle the Rose matchup and can win, so he’ll do his best. Uryo was right – he won.

That leads into an overtime FT1, Itazan puts up Uryo Rose again. The home team puts up Shuto Urien. Uryo says he worked really hard on the Dhalsim match, and he’s glad he was able to deliver. He says in this FT1 he will do anything it takes to win. Shuto says that this is a real man’s FT1, and he doesn’t have anything to say. His team cheers him on in the background. Aru talks a bit about how a FT1 is the real deal from the arcade. Aru was expecting Nemo vs. Itazan, but with how Uryo was playing Nanai thought the had to go up. Uryo did whatever he needed to for the win – including a risky CA after a blocked jump-in attack.

Since DNG won, they get the final interview. Nauman says that while he said before the match that he practiced extensively, he wasn’t able execute on everything, and unfortunately he lost. But Uryo really worked hard and did great, and he’s inspired by that to work harder and be more of a man like Uryo. Aru says something about how he’s already practiced so much, but Nauman replies that he still has a way to go to be able to deliver on that practice, and will try harder. Takeuchi John says that in SFL it really goes on for a long time, and you have to think about how you respond and what you do, what the different scenarios are, how to adapt, and how you lose. While watching Uryo while preparation is important, being able to have fire fighting ability (?? I believe he’s talking about dynamic adaptability) is really important, and that’s probably the biggest reason that he has been losing. He’ll work harder, and thank you! (Uryo is in the background nodding sagely.)

They ask Itazan about the win as the manager. Itazan says that when he saw that they had to play Saishunkan he was super depressed – Aru: there’s a lot of history there – but now that it’s over Uryo Rose was just amazing, he’s just so moved he think he might throw up. You know, it’s really rare that you think that you just might have to throw up like that. Aru says “isn’t that what you expected when you picked him up in the draft?” and Itazan replies yes, of course! Nanai asks whether it’s a really gutsy move to put Uryo up when they are the away team, and did they decide as a team? Yes, they decided as a team, and it was a bit tough, and there was some concern about the order, but looking back it was the right thing. Uryo’s Rose was key for them.

Aru asks if they should call this Uryo’s day for all the contributions he made? Uryo first wants to thank all the Dhalsims that helped him, and he’s really thankful for that. Thanks to all that he started to think that he can win, and thought somehow he had a handle on it, then if he felt like that, the team said well you should try that “something” in the tournament. He’s really grateful that the team trusted him in the Anchor spot. In the FT1 he said he would do anything and once he had the CA stocked, he thought he’s shoot it off, and he was able to win off of that hit. No matter what he was going to use that CA. (Everyone’s laughing at that.) Aru says that he had a combo but didn’t use it then, and instead used it later? Uryo says that Rose doesn’t have good invincible options, people can throw her (out of EX drill) so CA is her only real option. Aru says that Uryo wanted to play before this but it was hard for him to find a good spot, but today he took on a lot of responsibility, is that what he wanted? Of course he wanted that, but (speaking to everyone) you don’t want to go into a FT2 with Rose do you? I want to show that she can do it.

Looking forward to the next match Itazan says that they owe a lot to Uryo’s Rose, next up is Shinobism, and man Shinobism, Shinobism. Their team composition is similar to ours. That’s going to be the key. It going to come down to the power of Teamwork. Yoroshiku onegaishimasu.

12 2022-10-18 JP SFL Section 6 Day 2

12.1 Warmup

Today’s warmup is Yamato with the return of Hameko. They talk a bit about how Hameko was out, and he said it was fun to watch from home for the first time, gives his thanks to Nanai, etc.

Back to Hameko’s Choice. It’s “Hameko’s back, memorial best bout!” They first highly Kawano Lucia vs. Fuudo Poison. Kawano spent a month preparing just to defeat Fuudo with Pugera and Good 8 Squad exclusive training partner Tachikawa for that match. It was really amazing that they kept that hidden, and then in the live match he just really steamrolled Fuudo. Even though you can think of strategies for certain characters and prepare for them, actually doing it in the real live situation is very hard, so he was impressed by that. Kawano used a technique he’s great with Kolin at – walking and blocking – to get up close, then punish Fuudo’s attacks on whiff and sometimes block. Hameko investigated and Lucia’s crouching heavy kick is further than Kolin’s, and that is key against Poison. Seeing Kawano go that deep is something that we just wouldn’t see outside of Street Fighter League. He thinks we might see Kawano’s Lucia more in the future, and there might be other cases out there like that.

Looking forward to the match predictions, for Gyogun vs. Good 8 Squad Hameko wants to pay attention to Gachi-kun Rashid. Pugera Boxer will likely be countered with Mizuha Cody due to crime sway. Mago Luke will probably face Gachi-kun Rashid, but Gachi-kun has been taking down Lukes in JP SFL this season. Since Machabo Necali did a lot of work last time, he might take on Dogura’s Dictator. It will be hard for Kawano to bring out Lucia as the away team. Moke also sees Gachi-kun as a rival, so you might see a Rashid mirror, or Moke’s Falke against Gachi-kun.

Match two with Hiroshima Team iXA home and Nagoya OJA Body Star Mildom away. Hameko thinks Fuudo Poison will be the Anchor, and probably Inaba Dictator will go against him. Fuudo can also switch to Mika so he makes a good Anchor. But there is a chance that Gunfight brings out his Lucia, who he played a lot a while back, even though we haven’t seen his Lucia lately. Crusher Birdie might go against Daigo’s Guile. In the JP World Warrior they met and Crusher won. Akira Cammy and Nari-kun Akira are had to predict. Storm Kubo’s Abigail might go against Akira Cammy, or Gunfight Oro against Nari-kun Akira. There lots of different ways this could go.

12.2 Gyogun vs. Good 8 Squad

First up on the away side is Kawano Kolin. They ask Mago who will go up, and he says “hm, well just like I expected they have Pugera Boxer as Anchor. Kawano huh… Well, I guess I’ve got no choice but to go up myself!” The whole time he’s stroking his chin, and talking a bit funny – he’s always putting on a show. Mago Luke vs. Kawano Kolin. Kawano says “I might lose to Mago in the looks department, but I’ll win in the game.” The more I hear from Kawano the more I like him. Mago says that he wasn’t sure if we would see Kolin or Lucia, but one thing is for sure, I’ll do it. (He didn’t – Kawano won.)

The middle match is Machabo Necali vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun said that since Kawano won, the pressure is off. Since he lost to Machabo in the Topanga Charity Cup he wants to run it back here. Machabo says that last year when he was using Cammy he lost to Gachi-kun, and he also wants to play him again. Gachi-kun wins.

The Anchor match is Mizuha Cody vs. Pugera Boxer. Pugera says this is not what he expected, but he thinks as long as Mizuha’s Cody doesn’t go in 100% full effort he will win. Mizuha says that he’s been playing Boxer non-stop for the past week and finally he’s been able to (I really can’t follow this – I think he’s saying 純マッシング – pure mashing – but it might also be some sort of blister) do something that he wasn’t able to do before, and he if can do that, then probably he can win. (Just a reminder: if you need really good translations, get someone who does it professionally.) Mizuha won.

That means there will be an overtime FT1 match. The away team chooses Gachi-kun Rashid, and Home Mago says they have no choice but to send up Mizuha Cody. Gachi-kun says this is his first overtime, so he’s excited. Mizuha says since it came this far, he wants to end it on a win, and he’ll do his best. It wasn’t enough though, and Gachi-kun wins for the team win.

They ask Gachi-kun about his thoughts, and he said he wasn’t sure what order to put up because Gyogun has a lot of characters in their arsenal. They started with Kawano this time, and it worked out for them he thinks. Yamato asks what Gachi-kun thinks about their first overtime FT1 since Pugera lost to Mizuha, and he replies that it was really fun. They already got 20 points, so he wasn’t too nervous, and it was a good feeling.

They ask Kawano his thoughts, and he says that while lots of people are having trouble with the Luke matchup in the current version and previous patch, he recommends if you just whiff punishing Luke’s mid and long-range attacks, stopping him from dashing in, anti-airing all of his jump-ins, block every time you see him throw a fireball, and hit confirm every attack then it’s not too hard, that was his strategy. (Sounds like an easy plan.) Hameko says, oh, I see. Good advice. Moving to Pugera, he says stuff that is hard to interpret. When he first went up, people were telling him that his hair was covering his eye and hiding it, so he tried to brush it out. Now, he said (I think) “I shouldn’t have uncovered my eye”. Hameko asks if it was better with hair covering his eye, and he responds “well, now I think having just a little bit is probably best”. Then he covers both eyes up, that’s how he’ll play next time.

Dogura says that the players did really well. The team says “hey, are you our manager now or something!?” He says that this was their first overtime, and they were able to win thanks to Gachi-kun, and they have some tough fights coming up, but their team will pull together as one to win it. Note: he said 一丸となって (pull together as one) which is a homophone with 一眼となって (have one eye) and if that isn’t a poke at Pugera (who now has both eyes completely covered) I’ll be sorely disappointed. Given Gachi-kun’s reaction (face palm, looks like he just tasted something awful) and Dogura’s super self-satified look on his face, I’m pretty sure it is a bad dad-level pun.

Gachi-kun says that their next match is against Kumamoto, and will end out the first half, so they want to win all their first half matches. They’ll do their best (I need to find more ways to translate 頑張ります。)

12.3 Hiroshima Team iXA vs. Nagoya OJA Body Stars Mildom

The first match is Inaba Dictator vs. Akira Cammy. Akira says that he just saw Inaba last week in Hiroshima, and they are friendly. When they meet in tournaments Inaba lets him win (well, not quite – he receives the pleasure of being able to win, he wins, but in some way is receiving that from Inaba) so he also wants to get the win here too. Inaba says he practiced for Cammy, watched lots of Akira’s replays on CFN, and knows Akira. He’ll do his best. He didn’t study Akira’s replays enough because Akira won.

The middle match is Storm Kubo Alex vs. Fuudo Poison. Fuudo says he thought he might see Gunfight’s Alex (prior to that Daigo said “it’s been all Oro” – guess they were talking about Gunfight) but also prepped for Storm Kubo with Abigail, Honda, and Dan. Storm Kubo says that his time has come. There’s nothing else to say. I thought Storm Kubo had it – he was on game point, but Fuudo clutches it out.

The last match is Crusher Birdie vs. Daigo Guile. Daigo says that since he lost to Crusher previously in the WW tournament, he expected to see him here. So he really practiced up for Birdie. Crusher says that he never had a chance to play Daigo in Street Fighter Alpha 3 (Crusher played a mean Sodom in that game) so he’s looking forward to a Best of Five 5 here. This is also important for the team and he wants to win to send it to overtime. Daigo won 3-1 so no overtime unfortunately.

Since Nagoya won 40-0, they get the final interview. They start with Daigo who says that he has Fuudo, a strong Birdie on his team, and he just recently (today! then goes back on it to “a bit before”) got to his current playstyle. He was getting advice up to the last second to get to where he is. So this really was a team victory. They turn to Akira, who is super happy about the win. He lost to Dogura’s Dictator prior to this, so he worked a lot on Dictator, and got good advice from Fuudo and Daigo. He thought he was able to execute well, so he won the game, and had good luck as well (to be on the team I read that as.) Fuudo expected Alex, and that’s a hard match, he’s really glad he practiced it. You also have to know how to read the other person. Storm Kubo had really good adjustments, so he’s happy to win. Finally they ask Nari-kun, who is very satisfied. He thinks he needs to work harder himself. When he lost in the 3rd Section against Tokido, Daigo told him he would go on administrative leave for 10 sessions, and he is appealing now for an early release from his prison. (People laughing all around – Daigo said that!? 10 times? Aru says that would end the season!)

Finally they go to Akira to hear about their upcoming match. He says since they got 40 points they are really catching up to Good 8 Squad on Friday they have Gyogun and they want to win that and put a scare into Good 8 Squad.

13 2022-10-21 JP SFL Section 7 Day 1

13.1 Warmup

Hameko and Aru, the reliable pair, are back in action. They start the warm-up off talking about Crusher Birdie vs. Daigo Guile, and a very close last second win that he pulled out of a time-out. Hameko analyzer frame by frame how he pulled that off, with some in-depth discussion about frame advantage. He also looked at some other options that could have played out.

Expectation is that Mago Luke will play with Daigo Guile facing him, if we see Mizuha Cody they expect Fuudo Poison to take that matchup, and they expect Nari-kun Akira to match up with Moke’s Rashid. If Moke uses Falke, probably Akira Cammy will likely face him.

For DNG vs Shinobism, they expect Itazan to face Momochi’s Cody if he goes up. Probably Takeuchi John would take Yamaguchi’s Luke, and based on JP WW results Uryo Rose might try for Fujimura’s Luke.

13.2 Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Gyogun

Akira puts up Fuudo Poison vs. Machabo’s Necali. Machabo says that he has prepared, and wants to show us how well by winning. Fuudo says he doesn’t think Necali is a good character, but in a FT1 could be tough. He wants to watch out for Machabo’s “optimizations” (he’s been called “Mr. Optimization”.) Machabo pulled out a surprise Lucia, though Hameko said he’s been playing a lot of her. Looks like that’s paid off; Machabo got the win after going down one set.

The second match is Akira Cammy vs. Mizuha Cody. Mizuha says that since they are the away team, he prepared well and will win. Akira says he’s been playing Cody so much he’s been seeing it in his dreams, but this morning he was pretty worried and that’s been going on for hours now. He just wants to win and get rid of this foreboding feeling. Aru asks whether he’ll stop worrying if he wins, and he says that if he wins he thinks it will be time for a big smile. I don’t think Akira will be smiling tonight though, he lost 1-2.

Nari-kun Akira faces Mago Luke. Mago says that he did prepare, but he really wasn’t expecting Nari-kun. He did think he would be pivotal in their match against Nagoya, so he did a lot of prep. But he’s surprised to face Nari-kun’s Akira. Still, that said, he’s definitely going to win. When it’s Nari-kun’s turn to talk, someone else on the team says “hey, he was surprised! he was surprised!” while Nari-kun has is eyes closed and is meditating. The commentary team asks him a few times if he’s ok (he’s putting on a show of meditating) and someone else on the team (Akira?) says that he’s completely concentrating on the match and can’t do anything else.

Hameko comments that he heard Nari-kun was supposed to be in jail for 10 more rounds. He should have stayed there maybe, he lost 1-3 giving Gyogun the 40 point win as the away team.

Since Gyogun had the oppressive win, they get the final interview. First they talk with Machabo, asking about the choice of Necali. He says that it wasn’t just about using Necali, but seeing who would come face him, and since Fuudo came with Poison, Lucia made the most sense. He saw that Lucia was a good choice against Poison, and when the team asked if he thought he could win with her, he said he could and brought her out. He says that Lucia is good at stopping what Poison wants to do, while on the opposite hand Necali has a tough time with her. The neutral is tough, and Fuudo’s defense is so good you can’t break him, so he had to do something, and Lucia was it.

They ask Mizuha about Cammy vs. Cody, and he says he only had about three days, so he practiced as much as he could. He’s really happy that paid off. They ask Moke what he thought, and he’s super happy that they got 40 points off Nagoya OJA. He really left the hard work to his teammates these last two weeks, and he thinks his teammates are great.

Mago is also super happy about 40 points, especially against such a strong team. He’s being a bit of a goof. Aru says that Nari-kun had a good ground game. Since Nari-kun went up against Tokido’s Luke previously, he thought that Nari-kun was confident in the matchup, so he prepared for that, and also looked at Nari-kun’s playstyle a lot. Analyzing how Nari-kun played was a key part of winning. (Starts talking about 40 points again and laughing.) Mago says his team has been able to bring out everyone’s potential, and Machabo’s contributions have been huge for the team. Necali isn’t a character people think is too good, but he was able to use his sub-character Lucia, and he’s moved from a weak chink in the team to a strong member. (Machabo thanks him.) Aru says that Gyogun has made a good turn-around, but Mago says it really depends on Shinobism, but they are shooting for 3rd place. (On the fade out Mago keeps talking about 40 points, mumbling stuff.)

Aru says they had to cut him off because of that. heh.

13.3 Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Shinobism Gaming

Uryo Rose vs. Fujimura Luke is up first, following along with some of the Warm Up predictions. Fujimura says that he predicted this, and has practiced for it. Shinobism has really been on a roll lately, and he wants to make sure that doesn’t stop. Uryo says he lost to Fujimura in a FT2 previously, and is looking forward to running it back. Uryo wins convincingly.

Itabashi Abigail vs. Yamaguchi Luke. Yamaguchi says that he lost to Itazan in the last JP WW so he’s looking to win in the run-back. Itazan says something like, I want to show this young one how tough us old guys can be. It was super close, but the young Yamaguchi won.

It will be John Takeuchi Cody vs. Momochi Cody for the anchor match. Momochi says he didn’t expect the Cody mirror. He expected Uryo or Itazan, and once they played maybe Nauman Luke, but he didn’t expect a mirror. He’s really good at the mirror though, so he’ll always take those. Takeuchi John says he doesn’t think Momochi has prepared enough for the mirror and he has some strategies prepared. Even though he has lost a bunch until now, he’s prepared well and is confident. His confidence paid off, Momochi won.

Shinobism gets the final interview. Fujimura says his teammates are really strong. Yamaguchi says he feels like he won against Itazan not because of his preparation but that it just came down to his fighting spirit. Hameko says that he was able to overcome that grouchy old man. Yamaguchi is really happy he won, he thought in that final match final round he wasn’t playing that well, but somehow was able to win. Johnny says at first Takeuchi John looked really good, but then Momochi was able to duplicate Takeuchi John’s approach and win. He thinks that a Ninja’s copy power there.

Momochi says he thought Takeuchi John prepared really well, and their order really threw them off. He thought things didn’t go well at first when he went down 0-2, and he thought of changing his character when he was down. He was thinking of changing to Akira, but when he said that Yamaguchi said he should stick with Cody and believe in himself. So I really wanted to change to Akira, but when I heard that from Yamaguchi I decided to stick with it, and I’m glad I did. Aru asks whether he was intentionally taking some of Takeuchi John’s strategies while playing. Momochi said he had a bunch of mistakes in the first two games, and particularly felt like he was losing to EX Zonk. The Flow in fighting games is really important, and he was getting swept up in that, which is why he wanted to change his character. I didn’t really change my tactics as much as take the confidence from my teammates telling me to play like I normally do. Aru says they were able to get the win and it doesn’t look like they are slowing down, what do they think looking forward? Their next match is Good 8, and they are in 2nd place, so they want to win and take over 1st place in the second half of the season.

14 2022-10-25 JP SFL Section 7 Day 2

14.1 Warmup

Aru and Hameko on handling communication today. For Hameko’s Choice Hameko selects some battles from the 7th Section to talk about. The Cody mirror match from DetonatioN Gaming vs. Shinobism with Takeuchi John and Momochi. John came out with a fast 2 game lead, but Momochi came back for the win. He focuses on the first round in the 3rd game, with 12 seconds left. John had one EX gauge, Momochi had none, so it looked like he might get the win since John had EX Zonk Knuckle and he was aiming for a time over win. Momochi didn’t have any EX gauge or V-meter so didn’t have a good way to counter EX Zonk Knuckle. Hameko freezes on an empty medium kick and with inputs on shows that John punches too in order to charge up Zonk Knuckle. Since Momochi knows he wants to EX Zonk, Momochi approached and put some grey life on him, jumped back, and then jumped forward because he knew Cody was charging EX Zonk and wouldn’t have access to his anti-air button, then put on more grey life (which is counted as no life for time up) so by the time John could do his Zonk Knuckle, Momochi won from the grey life.

For the team previews, they expect surprisingly that Torimeshi Dhalsim might take on Inaba’s Dictator. Drill kick could play a big role, and they talked about some other aspects of the matchup. Crusher’s Birdie might be hard to use in this away matchup, sako’s Menat would be a good counter. Bon-chan Sagat would be good against Storm Kubo’s Alex, Tokido Luke is likely to take on Gunfight Oro.

Nemo Falke will definitely counter Gachi-kun Rashid if he is up. Shuto will likely face Pugera’s Boxer in that match (he just beat him in Grand Finals of JP WW #3 I believe) and again we might see YHC-Mochi Dhalsim vs. Dogura Dictator. Higuchi would likely take on Kawano since he can deal well with projectiles from either Kolin or Lucia. If Gachi-kun is in the Anchor slot though, based on past performance Higuchi is likely to confront him instead of Kawano.

14.2 v6 Plus FAV Gaming vs. Gyogun

sako sends up his Menat vs. Crusher Birdie (as predicted in the Warmup.) Crusher says this is a tough matchup, and he’s sure that sako prepared, but he was to beat him senseless. sako says he wants to with this first match to contribute to the team. It was closer than I thought it would be, but sako won.

Bon-chan Sagat vs. Storm Kubo Abigail. Storm Kubo expected that, and prepared. He wants to show what real SFV looks like. Bon-chan says he wasn’t sure if he would play, but since Storm Kubo is up, he is up. He’s prepared for the match. Bon-chan was more prepared though as he got the 2-0 win.

Torimeshi Dhalsim vs Inaba Dictator, again as predicted on the warm-up show. Inaba says it is tough coming around the second time as the away team, and he doesn’t like the Dhalsim match but they also have a hermit on the island (reference to Torimeshi being called the Mountain Monk) and he thinks he can win it. They go to Torimeshi for a comment, and sako is saying something like “if you win or lose, you’re still welcome here”. Aru prompts Torimeshi with the comment about Hiroshima having their own hermit, and he says that he practiced a lot with other Dictators along with Bon-chan, (says something about a reference to a tragic love story – perhaps relating to something about hermits) and for the sake of the Dictator they practiced with he will win. Which he did.

v6 Plus FAV Gaming got the 40 point sweep. They start with sako, who says it has been a while since he’s played against Crusher, who has really good offense. He was a bit scared, but somehow was able to get the win and is happy about that. Moving to Bon-chan, who is really happy that the team was able to win while he was playing. They joke about that a bit but he says it’s something he is concerned about, that they didn’t win when he played. He thought that he could win with Sagat, and is glad he was able to deliver. Aru says it was nice seeing Bon-chan play after all this time, and Bon-chan makes a wild face saying “Oh yeah, I really want to play more!” appealing to sako directly. They ask Tokido his thoughts, who says their team is very dependable / strong. Bon-chan won well, and he wants to see more of that. Then he says something about how he wanted to have the “handsome guy face-off” but his opponent didn’t come so he couldn’t play. Aru expects he’ll have that chance later in the season (Tokido is covering his “pretty face” while they are talking.)

Torimeshi says he used to play Obi-san’s Dictator a bit going way back, so he was confident about Dictator since he asked many people to practice with him. Some number of them might have gotten sick or in bad spirits, but since he won, so please forgive him. Aru asks whether he “broke” a bunch of Dictator players, and he says well, maybe one or two. Aru says that while Torimeshi was picked up in the draft, he’s really been in the Anchor spot for the team a lot, and does he feel that pressure? He says that sometimes he’s the anchor based on the character matchup, but doesn’t really feel too pressured by it. Well, he won’t talk too specifically about it.

Asked about the next match, sako says in the second half of the season they want to win.

14.3 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Good 8 Squad

Shuto Urien vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun says that Shuto and Higuchi are a real force on Saishunkan Sol, and he wants to stop that force in its tracks as the leader of the shock troops first on the front line. (Lots of military type terms here.) Aru tells Shuto that he’s facing Gachi-kun, the leader of the frontline shock troops. Shuto said that he was hoping for Pugera-san (he just beat him in JP WW #3 Grand Finals IIRC), but of course he predicted that Pugera would dodge that. He thought the first time around when he was preparing for Gachi-kun that it was super tough, and Urien couldn’t win, but lately with more practice he thinks it’s up to 5-5, and he wants to show us that it isn’t a foregone conclusion. Gachi-kun won in a close match.

Nemo Urien vs. Dogura Dictator. Dogura expected either YHC-Mochi or Nemo, but Urien isn’t the type of character that will make you sick or break you, so he thinks he will be ok. Aru says that Urien isn’t the type of character to make people sick, to which Nemo responds that he got pretty sick watching that previous Urien vs. Rashid match (ooh that’s rough, you ok Shuto?) Nemo is not smiling at all, which Aru comments on and asks about Dogura. He says that he’s prepared and confident, so will do his best. Dogura wins 2-0.

Higuchi Guile vs. Kawano Kolin. Kawano says that looking at the results for the recent JP WW #3 the young kids Higuchi (21 or so?) and Shuto (24 years old) are both doing really well, and he really wants to play them. He’s looking forward to it. Higuchi says Kawano’s strong, one of the strongest, the world champion, but he’s the Japan champion so he can’t lose. Also, while it’s a bit hard to say in front of Shuto, it’s the battle of the two strongest (Shuto says – hey shut up!) and he’ll do his best. Higuchi won 3-1.

That means it is a tie, so we have an overtime FT1. The Away team puts up Dogura Dictator, and the home team puts up Higuchi Guile. Dogura says “Uuh, well, it’s a FT1 so I’m going to do it.” Higuchi says “well, after the battle of the two strongest young players (Hey! says Shuto), next is – well, Dogura’s won all his overtime matches, right?” Aru says that Higuchi really follows the data. So now it’s a battle of the people that haven’t lost (the overtime matches.) Dogura won it.

Good 8 Squad gets the interview. He said this is probably the hardest team for them as the away team, they really were worrying for a long time about how they would set up their order. I expected Higuchi, but I got Shuto, even though I said as the shock trooper it was the most important battle, I was really nervous. My hands were going numb. He said it was really tough, Shuto’s really been doing well lately, he’s strong, his neutral is really good. They turn to Kawano (who lost the Anchor match) and he said that right after this interview he’s going to go get some tea or something, and he doesn’t have anything to say except “cheers”. Well, but it was great that Dogura won the middle match and overtime, and he also wants to thank both Dogura and Hameko. Aru says Dogura didn’t win because of Hameko. (Biased commentary!) They ask Pugera what he thought, he was sat as the director this time, and asks Aru about what he thought of Pugera’s management skills. Aru says the important thing is that they won in the end. Pugera says that because he lost to Higuchi and Shuto in JP WW #3 just a bit ago, it was clear that he should sit out. Aru asks if that was because of the recent results, and a reflection of that. So he’s really sacrificing for the team here.

They turn to Dogura and asked if he was nervous about the FT1. He quoted something that I don’t know – a quote from the manga Garoden: “I showed you all you need to see. I won’t show you anything more.” Aru asked “Hey, are you ok to end the interview here then?” And Dogura breaks character. sorry sorry! It’s a FT1 and a long time ago this is what we used to bet our lives on, it was tough back then. Dogura says that young kids are good now, but sometimes they can’t win, and you just need the old man power, the FT1 power, and they just don’t have it. Higuchi and Kawano are really top class though, and them and other youg players they should keep on working hard to get stronger, and while you might have lost to some old dudes in the past, there really isn’t anything to the FT1 power, and other stuff, just keep on practicing. There was some other stuff there with people on his team saying that’s not like him, Aru saying that is nice to say, Dogura said he wanted to say that in September, but …

Turning to Gachi-kun, he repeats that he thought they might have gone 0-40, so it’s great to get this win and bodes well for the second half. Gachi-kun says the teammates will go and take on hard challenges, and if the first two players can win, it helps, they’ve got a good team.

15 2022-10-28 JP SFL Section 8 Day 1

15.1 Warmup

Hameko and Aru are the commentary team today. For Hameko’s Choice they go over The SFL Re:Action clip with Kawano about his “secret” Lucia pick where he “quit being human” against Fuudo’s Poison. It’s a good clip, it shows how surprised Nagoya OJA Body Stars were, shows some of the talk between the team members on both sides (it would be nice for someone to subtitle that, I don’t plan to.) They also look at the SFL Re:Action clip for Uryo’s Rose. Aru says that back in SF4 Uryo was in the A-League for Topanga League, and talks about how Nuki screamed out once “Uryo’s free!” and everyone’s remembered that since then. Something about how it was a big win for him, they expect him to play a bigger role in the second half of the season. They also had the clip of Johnny talking about having dreams with people that have stretchy limbs and then going on to dominate Torimeshi Dhalsim with G. The talk about the Momochi – Takeuchi John Cody mirror and how Momochi really thought about changing characters before coming back for the win. Particularly talked about how Yamaguchi convinced him to stick with Cody, and how that team aspect is really important in SFL.

They look at how many points each player has scored – Higuchi, Fuudo, Momochi up at the top (100, 100, 90) continuing with Gachi-kun, Dogura, Mago, and Pugera (70, 70, 65, 60).

For the predictions around who will play in the Good 8 Squad vs. Shinobism Gaming match, Hameko is interested in who will take on Momochi Cody. Possibly Dogura Dictator, since he did well against Takeuchi John, but Momochi also has Akira, and Momochi has been trying to bait Dogura into playing him. They think Momochi will take the Anchor spot. They expect Pugera’s Bison to take on Fujimura or Yamaguchi Luke. Johnny beat Kawano previously, so if he goes up probably Gachi-kun’s Rashid will go up since Johnny has talked about how he doesn’t like Rashid – G. He could switch to Karin if necessary though.

For Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom they expect YHC-Mochi to take on Nari-kun’s Akira if he is, but it isn’t likely. They might see Nemo Gil vs. Akira Cammy since Gil’s parry is very useful there. Shuto Urien is likely to take on Fuudo, he’s been practicing for that, Fuudo might bring out Birdie. Higuchi vs. Daigo in the Guile mirror is likely.

15.2 Good 8 Squad vs. Shinobism Gaming

Gachi-kun Rashid vs. Johnny G. As predicted. Johnny says that Gachi-kun and he have a history, and so they likely each prepared for the other. He certainly did, and he knows everything about Gachi-kun now. Aru says “so you are the mongoose in this case”, referring to Gachi-kun trying to get people to call him the Hiroshima Anaconda for the longest time. Johnny says sure, that’s right. Gachi-kun has a wry smile, Aru prompts him by saying that Johnny knows everything about him. Gachi-kun says that he knows everything about Johnny too, and he asks if Johnny knows when his birthday is? (Sounds like he was trying to do an impression, possibly of some movie or something I don’t know.) During the match Aru and Hameko were talking about Birthdays, and when he won called Johnny Shinobi’s Mongoose.

Pugera Boxer vs. Fujimura Luke (as predicted). Fujimura says that he expected Pugera to come, so he’s prepared for that. Since Johnny won for them, he’d like to continue that. Pugera says that this battle is for humanity and justice (仁義 – also the Yakuza moral code, but could possibly be 神器 – a temple’s sacred treasure) and that they are both Atsushi – he’s Final Atsushi (his CFN name) and Fujimura is the first Atsushi – no, Ikeru Atsushi. I have no idea who he is talking about (I’d guess they are famous yakuza or other historical figures? Simple searches didn’t help.) Which Atsushi will win? Aru proclaims it the battle of the Atsushis! Pugera was the winner of the Atsushi battle.

Dogura Dictator vs. Momochi Cody. Momochi says that Dogura and Johnny both are at 100% win rates, and those are the only two players in SFL JP with 100% win rates. So he wants to win for Johnny to tank Dogura’s win rate. Dogura responds with “The time has come. That is all.” That is a reference to pro-wrestler Hashimoto Shinya and Chyouno Masahiro when they were in a tag-team battle against Antonio Inoki (recently deceased, famous enough that I know him) and Sakaguchi Seiji. Hashimoto said that in their pre-interview match, and Chyouno couldn’t stop laughing, which made the line famous. When asked why he couldn’t stop laughing, Chyouno said it was because he had expected a super long, drawn-out speech and on and on, but it was just a super simple phrase and he couldn’t get over it. This was from a match in 1990, and Aru and Hameko both seemed to appreciate the reference (I didn’t; I had to do some research for that.)

Momochi won, so they get the final interview. Aru starts with Johnny. He said that he played a lot with Takeuchi John’s Rashid offline, and actually he lost so much with G he was thinking of using Karin, but he was somehow able to win. He was playing well and in the flow. Aru asks Johnny when Gachi-kun’s birthday is (he’s supposed to know everything) and he said he has no idea at all. Fujimura says that his opposing Atsushi was super strong, and he did prepare for Boxer but he wasn’t able to use that technology well. Fujimura says something about eating a lot of damage off of jump-ins, and he’ll have to review that, but the next time they meet it will be at home, and he’ll continue to work hard. They ask Yamaguchi his thoughts as an observer, he said it was his first time in that role. Fujimura’s play was good even if he lost, he shouldn’t worry about that, in the end they won.

Momochi said this was for Johnny, and he was able to preserve that win rate. They’ve been winning well as a team and that is important. Aru asks about the importance of defeating Good 8 Squad. Everyone thinks Good 8 Squad and maybe all teams feel like they can’t do much to keep them out of first place, and we felt like that, but now they only have their sights set on being number one so the win was big.

We get a 3000 JPY off coupon for Nosh – a food prep service, and Aru and Hameko get to sample a new dish coming out in October. Looks pretty good, and Hameko gets to eat it. I’m actually surprised we haven’t seen more ads for things like the food that Nagoya OJA BODY STAR sells. Aru says he uses the service – and is impressed with the half boiled egg for a frozen food.

15.3 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom

Both of the teams gathered in one place (so each team is in the same physical location, though the two teams are in different places) – Saishunkan Sol in Kumamoto, Nagoya OJA in the Shibuya e-Stadium (except for Nari-kun). They were going to join from Nagoya e-Stadium but for various reasons had to use the Shibuya one instead.

First up is Nemo Gil vs. Akira Cammy, as Hameko predicted. He says that two days ago he really started practicing hard for Nemo Gil (and he’s almost laughing saying this, with his hands in a prayer position) and he was really, really worried about it (really laughing now) and he prays that he was able to get up to speed in time. He really wants to win, and he hopes he has the power to win because he just read the book “The Power to Believe” (written by Nemo. He’s also still laughing.) Aru asks Nemo if he’s nervous broadcasting in front of people from Kumamoto. Nemo says he is, and Aru says it’s a chance to show the people of Kumamoto what they are about. He will do his best. Nemo dominated 2-0.

Higuchi Guile vs. Daigo Guile, again right in line with Hameko’s predictions. (Again, they cut to Daigo for comments and he’s talking to people off screen, can’t hear the commentary team – kind of funny this is the second time that has happened, and always with Daigo.) When they ask if Daigo can hear them, Akira says he can hear them, but maybe Daigo can’t. So they switch to Higuchi, who can hear them. Aru prompts him with the Guile mirror (Shuto is leaning over in the background to get into the shot) Higuchi says he thought this would be the optimal choice so he prepared thoroughly. Since Nemo won he wants to continue that, and he has two other objectives: 1) because it is now the second half of SFL and things are starting to settle down and I want to heat things up again with this team battle. 2) I want to show everyone whose Guile is stronger. Aru comments on Shuto hanging out and cheering in the background as well. They go back to Daigo, who is talking now. He’s hanging out out of frame though. Daigo said that Higuchi was talking like a young kid, and that’s good. He’ll do his best not to lose. Daigo convincingly beat the younger Higuchi 2-0. Nice to see the older men putting in some work.

Shuto Urien vs. Fuudo Poison, also as Hameko predicted. Fuudo says that he expected that, especially because he lost recently to him in a tournament, but he said he hadn’t really been looking too closely at Shuto up to now. He really looked at him closely for this though. (Aru asked what that “maji maji miteiru” was about, and he just repeated watching him closely.) Shuto says that even if he has watched him he’s still lost, and Shuto’s been paying close attention to Fuudo even before SFL started, and no matter what he thought he would take on Fuudo. He was born to beat Fuudo, and he really wants to win today. In response to Aru asking about that he said he learned about that fate recently. Aru comments that he must have been raised that way recently. Shuto wins 3-2, giving Saishunkan Sol the victory.

Nemo is called on for the first post-game interview. He says that they have a Cammy player on their team as well, so he was able to get really good practice here in Kumamoto. Nemo thought starting last year that Gil was pretty good against Cammy, and that practice last year and the more recent practice was important. Higuchi says that he unfortunately lost, but the team won. He was able to win in the first half, and he’s been carried a bit after that, and he really likes SFL (the team aspect). It’s great when the whole team can get points. I’m super happy, thank you (patting Shuto on the back.) YHC-Mochi says he was really shaking, Shuto said he was confident against Fuudo and he’s glad he won that.

They ask Shuto about how he feels as someone who was born to defeat Fuudo, having just done that. He’s happy he was born. He really feels like he’s gotten used to things, and delivered good results lately. The advice from his teammates is on point, and doesn’t think he’ll lose in the second half. He think he’s better in the FT3 than FT2, but has been good in the FT3 spot. Turning to Nemo they ask about streaming from Kumamoto. He says it’s really nice to play in an offline setting with people cheering them on. He’d like to see more of that. Aru asks if the crowd is into it, and Nemo says they could hear people cheering, it was invigorating. He also says the food in Kumamoto is great, and he looks forward to playing more there.

16 2022-11-01 JP SFL Section 8 Day 2

16.1 Warmup

Today we have Yamato and Hameko. Since it is the start of the second half of the season, Hameko wants to look back at things that stood out to him from the first half. One of those things is that Luke is the most used character so far (Tokido, Bon-chan, Fujimura, Yamaguchi, Mago, Nauman). Still not as prevelant as SFL US though. They talk a bit about why Luke is used so much, really good neutral with standing punch target combos, standing medium kick, and sandblast. He’s also really strong when he has people cornered. His V-Trigger 1 also has a unique property in that it regenerates, and is an easy one button useful move. The look at success rates with Luke (Tokido, Yamaguchi, Mago, Fujimura, Bon-chan, Nauman) and highlight different stats from their usage, and show some highlights.

For the match predictions for DNG vs FAV, Hameko says Torimeshi is key to FAV. If Torimeshi goes up, they expect Itazan G to face him since last time Johnny’s G really messed up Torimeshi. Takeuchi John’s Cody has had success against Luke, and might face any Luke that FAV puts up, but Tokido could switch to Urien in that case, so maybe he will be the Anchor match. Uryo Rose could take on Luke, but according to rumors Bon-chan’s Luke is really good against Rose, so maybe DNG would switch up Uryo and Takeuchi John in that case.

For Gyogun vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA Hameko expects Inaba Dictator to be important. Probably Mago Luke or Machabo Necali would face Inaba in that case. For Crusher Birdie it would likely be Moke Rashid or maybe even Falke for the zoning. It’s a bit hard to tell who would go up between Storm Kubo or Gunfight, but Mizuha Cody would like face Storm Kubo and Mago Luke would take Gunfight.

16.2 Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. v6 Plus FAV gaming

Itazan G vs. Torimeshi Dhalsim, as predicted. Torimeshi says that he predicted this would happen, and it makes strategic sense, but he’s prepared for it and can win. Itazan says that he’s played a lot of the Dhalsim matchup with Torimeshi, and he’s not worried. He wants to show the power of his matchup based on what he’s learned with Torimeshi. He showed that well, winning 2-0.

Uryo Rose vs. sako Menat. sako expected Itazan to come after him, but is surprised to see Uryo, who is also from Kansai like him. It’s been a long time since they fought, so he’s looking forward to it. Uryo repeats that, saying it’s been a long time since he’s played sako and is also looking forward to it. Also, since Menat is Rose’s disciple, he can’t let her win. (The commentary team is also like “oh yeah!”). Uryo keeps order in the universe as the teacher wins 2-0.

Takeuchi John Code vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido says that last time he lost, and he wants to rebound from that especially since he’s being targeted this time. Takeuchi John says that for this first match in the second half, while he didn’t do too well in the first half, he’s going to win well, and get their team off to a good start. Unfortunately, he wasn’t able to do it, and lost to Tokido Luke 2-3.

That means we have an overtime FT1 match. FAV puts up Tokido Luke. Itazan puts up another serving of Takeuchi John. Tokido says given their match, he honestly didn’t think John would face him again, and doesn’t much else to say. Takeuchi John says he thought he played well, and when you lose even though you think you play well, that’s because he made some mistakes. For this FT1 it’s really about how much damage you can deal to your opponent and that’s something that will likely be important for him going forwards. So he wants to win here, and take back that important thing (the concept / learning) for himself. It was super close, but Tokido won it.

Since they won the overtime set, v6 Plus FAV Gaming gets the final interview. They ask Tokido how he feels after two wins, and he says wow, I barely feel like I’m living, I’m just hanging on to life by a thread here. Yamato said that he played and prepared well. Tokido says he expected to fight John so he played with a lot of Cody players (Kitsuke-san, Persona-kun, Yoshi-chan) and wanted to feel confident. He felt like he was able to show off some new stuff that Takeuchi John wasn’t able to adapt to or keep up with. He hasn’t won much in SFL and lost more than he expected. If that continues he really will get weaker, so he wants to run it back (in the second half and win.) Everyone, please keep high expectations from here on out.

They ask Torimeshi about the team win. He says that he plays a lot with Itazan in battle lounges, sometimes wins and sometimes loses, but it’s lots of fun. In a tournament like this though, he just gets murdered with Itazan’s dumb grin on his face and when he lost his expression just went slack. But Tokido and John had a really great back to back match and so I feel like I’ve got to step up my game.

They ask Bon-chan his thoughts, and he says one reason he didn’t play today was because of John’s Cody. He expected John to take on Tokido’s Luke, and he was just relegated to the cheerleading squad. Tokido was able to bring out some new things and was really confident, and used 70% of the new stuff, he’s really polished that Cody match. Bon-chan says that he’ll use it as reference.

sako-san says that as the away getting 25 points as the away team is really big, and they will do their best again Gyogun next.

16.3 Gyogun vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA

Machabo Necali vs. Inaba Dictator. Mago’s hamming it up again, “Machabo, Omae da”. Inaba says that he expected Machabo, and is prepared for that. There’s a rumor that if Machabo gets angry it’s a real problem so he wants to finish it off before that happens. Machabo says this is exactly what he expected for their first match of the second half, so he thinks it will go well, he’s get results, and they will ride that wave. Machabo wins 2-1.

Mizuha Cody vs. Gunfight Alex. Gunfight expected this, and prepared. He wants to – will win – this time. Mizuha says this is as expected, he put in so much training you might say he became a mountain hermit, and he wants to win things in the second half of the league. Mizuha took it 2-0.

Moke Rashid vs. Storm Kubo Alex. Storm Kubo says “Alex is the strongest!”. Moke says he says this reminds him of the first match, where he was anchor and lost 20 points. He wants to fix that here and get the win. He goes on to say that in the introduction every time he sees Storm Kubo yelling something, and he doesn’t know what it might be, maybe he’s heard rumors it’s some other person’s name (Moke shares the same first name as Nemo) and he thinks it would be nice if he could make Storm Kubo yell at him too. Moke wins 3-0, so maybe he will yell at Moke next time.

Gyogun gets the 40-0 win, so they get the interview. They ask Moke his thoughts since he just win, and he said he was worried about taking the Anchor spot, but he was able to do it. He says it was a tough fought battle with each interaction breaking different ways, and he was worried about it the whole time but managed to win. Mago said it was great! Machabo said he was a bit stiff, but in the end was able to calm down and win. He’s looking forward to the next battle. Mizuha says there aren’t many people using Alex, so it is hard to practice for, but he played a lot with Kichipa and was able to prepare.

Asking Mago about the next match he starts going on about getting 40 points again (like last time.) Leaving Moke for the Anchor, they planned which person to match up against, and so when it came to him he was in the final spot, and Mago didn’t think about it as the same as when they were away. Moke says that’s why he wasn’t able to say anything up until this match. Mago says he was able to win even with that weight on his back, and now they have jumped up to 3rd place, and can start to see 1st from there. He says Good 8 Squad is a really boring team, and he wants to overtake them, but Shinobism is next.

Moke yells something out but I can’t understand it. Looks super happy though!

17 2022-11-04 JP SFL Section 9 Day 1

17.1 Warmup

Back to Aru and Hameko as our hosts. They talk about a twitter campaign where you can get some Amazon gift cards by tweeting your support with specific hashtags (Nov. 1 to 4th) and then just right into the pre-match discussion because they will cover 4 matches tonight including Day 2.

v6 Plus FAV Gaming vs. Gyogun. Hameko is sure Mago will be the Anchor match because he’s good at the Luke mirror (Bon-chan, Tokido) If Torimeshi comes at him, he can change to Cammy. Torimeshi may instead opt to go for Mizuha’s Cody since that is a favorable matchup for Dhalsim. Hameko expects Machabo to sit out since Necali is vulnerable to Luke, so the question is what to do about Moke. Bon-chan Sagat might be interesting against Moke’s Falke, but Falke does have tools to get around fireballs with EX gauge. Hameko also thinks Tokido might try to take down Mago.

Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming. In their past meeting when Nagoya was away, they got 40 points, but Uryo’s Rose has been on a roll, so he might play this time. If that happens, Akira Cammy will likely take on Uryo’s Rose since she’s good at getting around fireballs and has high damage output. Daigo will likely take on Itazan’s G since he won that last time, and Fuudo Poison will likely face Takeuchi John’s Cody. Since Daigo has been on a roll lately, he might take on anyone in the Anchor spot, except for Rose which is a bit tough, so for that reason having Uryo Rose as the Anchor might be interesting.

Day 2.

Hiroshima Team iXA vs. Good 8 Squad. Crusher Birdie will likely face Pugera Bison, since he won in the JP WW last time. Dogura will likely be the Anchor since Alex or Oro would have a tough time against his Dictator, so at worst it would be a mirror match. Inaba Dictator would be good against Gachi-kun’s Rashid, but that Anchor spot is very important for points so it’s a tough decision. Gunfight Oro might face Kawano’s Kolin, but Kawano uses Oro too.

Shinobism Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto. Johnny’s G is likely to take on YHC-Mochi since he had all those dreams of stretchy limbs. Momochi Cody is likely to face Higuchi’s Guile. Probably Nemo or Shuto will be the Anchor, and Shuto won JP WW #3, and also beat a lot of Lukes to get there so Shuto is more likely to be the Anchor. In that case, Johnny’s G might take him on. Nemo has a Falke for Lukes that come to face him.

They then segment into predicting the wins, and Hameko thinks FAV gets the 25-20 win, Nagoya gets the 30-10 win, Good 8 Squad gets a 30-10 win, and Shinobism gets a 30-10 win. Aru has his own predictions, which are completely opposite, with 10-30 for Gyogun, 20-25 for Detonation, 30-10 for Team iXA, and 30-10 for Saishunkan Sol. Between the two of them they’ve got at least the right winner for every match. They show some stats of what readers have predicted for the wins, which is interesting to see – live stats from Twitter or similar might be fun to start pulling into broadcasts.

17.2 v6 Plus FAV Gaming vs. Gyogun

Bon-chan Luke vs. Moke Falke. Moke says that as the away team they want to cover lots of options by sending up his Falke, and he thinks facing Bon-chan is great. Aru says that he finally got a Luke to fight with his Falke, and Moke says “yeah, I think I’ve got a cheeky one here” – in the background you can hear Mago saying, yeah you’re right. Moke continues, saying that his opponent is really noisy and talks a lot, so he wants to shut him up. (Big smiles.) Aru asks for Bon-chan’s response when his opponent is calling him a cheeky boastfull fellow, but he says he thinks he’s quite honorable, and he’s never heard of someone talking so much trash in his life. There’s a bit more and Bon-chan confirms “did he really say that?” and Aru confirms it, so Bon-chan makes a great face and says “I will execute him!” This was one of the more interesting interchanges – nobody is ganbaruing here! Moke looked really good in the 2-0 win.

Torimeshi Dhalsim vs. Mizuha Cody. Mizuha says he doesn’t have a strong opinion about the Dhalsim matchup, but did expect to face Torimeshi, so he thought about what is important in that match-up. He thinks it’s important to come to spiritual enlightenment. Why do we live? What were we born for? I want to show you the answers to those questions in our match today. (Moke and Mago are laughing – Aru and Hameko were surprised too, they verified his “spiritual enlightenment” statement when he said it. I think he’s riffing on YHC-Mochi – the other Dhalsim player – often referred to as the aesthetic mountain monk for which this line of commentary would make sense. To me, that makes it an even better joke.) Hameko says that’s deep, and is impressed we get to this point on SFL, Aru says that since we’re entering the second half of the season he thinks everyone’s perspective is getting really strange. Aru turns to Torimeshi and says that his opponent is seeking spiritual enlightenment. He says that for Cody, he expects enlightenment to involved EX Zonks. He does say that he talks about samasara (the concept of birth and death and cyclical nature of life and existence, and also Dhalsim V-Trigger 2 Yoga Sansara) but there aren’t many characters in Street Fighter that you can fight with that, but he can with Cody so he’s going to use that. Torimeshi made good use of Sansara and took it 2-0.

Tokido Luke vs. Mago Luke. Tokido put on his (often written with Mago’s name on it) headband (video quality it too low for me to tell what is written there.) Mago said that Tokido finally came after him. He’s been practicing so that he could surpass Tokido, which was really tough work. Particularly because people can look at CFN to see who he’s been playing with. FAV has many different characters, and he felt like if you don’t prepare for all of them, one of those characters you’ve been slacking off on will come. So he’s prepared for all characters in order to surpass Tokido. Aru asks if this is exactly what Mago wanted? He thought Tokido didn’t have a choice and would need to face him. He’s prepared for Luke, for Urien, and everyone that Tokido can play. Aru asks Tokido what he thinks about Mago’s calm demeanor and saying that he was able to bait Tokido out. Tokido says “Oh wait, was he serious?” Tokido says well, the winner is the only one that can talk, and the next time Mago will be able to talk is only on his own personal stream. Tokido is the one that will do the talking. He brushes his hair out of the way of his headband, which says stuff that I can’t read at this quality level. Probably “Beat Mago” with his real name. Tokido took it 3-1.

v6 Plus FAV gets the win and the final interview. Aru ask Bon-chan how it went. Bon-chan says that when you are the home team, you really are supposed to fight like Tokido and Torimeshi (who both won their matches, unlike Bon-chan – who all season had has running gags about either not playing or losing when he plays. I don’t know Bon-chan, he seems like a great guy – his wife is certainly super awesome and always great when I see her at events.) Aru asks Bon-chan about finally facing a Falke – who on JP SFL has been talked about as the Luke-killer though we haven’t seen much of it. Bon-chan said in the morning he thought he would take on Moke, and didn’t have a problem facing him. He told his teammates that he’d be ok fighting him, and so that’s how it ended up that way. He’ll reflect on his actions. Aru reassures him that they still got the home victory.

Torimeshi says that the team thought he should either take Mizuha or Mago, and he practiced with some super strong Cody players (doesn’t specify who) and while he lost sometimes, he really built up his confidence and thought he had no choice but to take Mizuha. He’s happy he got the win. Aru said that his use of Sansara was very impressive. Torimeshi said he had some even better stuff in the corner but wasn’t able to bring it out. They ask sako his thoughts, and he thinks his team is strong. Asked about team spirit, he says it’s never been bad, but they won so that helps. Of course when you keep losing that hurts, but they have good team spirits, and the next match is home too, so they want to win that.

Finally on to Tokido. He’s got his headband back on, and making sure his hair isn’t covering it. You’re going to need a native speaker to read that thick marker kanji – I can just make out 良 as the final character. He said he was nervous, and bets Mago was too. He thinks it was tough for Mago, but he had to prep for Luke and Cammy too. He hasn’t really been listening to Mago though, and he’s sure that on his stream Mago is just talking trash constantly. Aru asks Tokido what he thinks Mago is saying about him, and he says that probably Mago builds him up to some level, and then after that it’s all up to how Mago feels. Aru asks how Tokido is feeling after now winning in the Anchor spot twice in a row, he said that early on he won in matches that were good for him, but lost in the tough ones. In these last two he was able to win in tough matches, and he’s happy about that. The advice from his teammates has been really good, and Bon-chan’s advice has been great (they cut to Bon-chan’s camera, and he’s got his Red Bull cap pulled down over his eyes so you can’t see him).

17.3 Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming

Takeuchi John is apparently feeling unwell so isn’t taking part today. The first match is Daigo Guile vs. Nauman Luke. Nauman says he’s going to run into him at full speed and win. Daigo says he’s prepared a lot and will do his best. Prep time Daigo is a strong Daigo, and wins 2-0.

Fuudo Poison vs. Itazan G. Itazan says he expected Mika, but it’s Poison. Aru asks if that is a problem, and Itazan says it’s not particularly an issue. He wants to make Fuudo’s spirit a sacrifice to John (who is out sick). Aru tells Hameko that he’s making a sacrifice, and he said it so casually too, Hameko says he’s more concerned about what condition Takeuchi John is in that he would need a sacrifice. Aru asks Fuudo how he feels about having his soul be sacrificed, and he asks whether John’s dead already or not. Fuudo said that he spent all his time practicing for John’s Cody, but he’s got some whiff punishing juice left over from his Cody practice, and will run full strength into Itazan instead and use that. The juice was good, and Fuudo won 2-0.

Akira Cammy vs. Uryo Rose. Aru asks Uryo about Akira Cammy and being in the position where he needs to save his team. (Again). He says since they lost the previous two matches, he’ll win here and send it to overtime. He’ll do his best. Akira says he’s really happy and nervous to play against Uryo but he’s really prepared for this. Last time he said that he’s played the most Cammy vs. Dhalsim in the world when he faced Torimeshi but this time he’s certain that he’s played the most Cammy vs. Rose in the world. He will win this time for sure. Akira must have played the most in the world, he wins 3-1.

Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom gets the 40-0 sweep, so they get the final interview. Aru starts with Daigo. He says that he practices the Luke match every day whether he’s going to face one in SFL or not, and thinks he’s really good at that matchup now. He’s glad he won. Aru asks about how he’s feeling, and he says that teams have been gunning for Fuudo so that has made it a lot easier for him. He’s only getting 10 points each time though, and would like to contribute more points to the team in the Anchor match. Aru asks Fuudo about his nice win with Poison instead of Mike. He was prepared to go with Mika, but it’s a bit dangerous in the FT2 so it glad he was able to win with Poison at the start. Aru says that Fuudo’s been their Anchor frequently, but this time with Akira there they got 40 points. They talked about that, and Fuudo encouraged him to take the Anchor spot. It’s not about me, it’s about the team, and he’s really happy about the win. They ask Nari-kun his thoughts, Nari-kun said he wasn’t able to play because of team composition but everyone on the team did well and he’s happy for it. Halfway through Daigo busts in and says he’s speaking too softly – Aru says, not it’s fine – Daigo is like ah, that’s just my personal feeling then hah hah. (Daigo is hilarious – he’s never as professional as the others, sometimes isn’t listening for his queues, and just seems really laid back and unconcerned.)

Finally they speak with Akira, Aru asks about his match with Rose. He says there were more things he wanted to do in the match, but even now his hands are shaking and he’s not sure whether he can speak or not. He’s glad he was able to win, and like Fuudo said he asked him about going up last, and everyone said he should do it. He almost feels like crying, he’s so happy he won. Aru asks about how important this win is for the team. Akira agrees, saying they fell down to 4th place last time, and getting 40 points here means they are still within sight of 1st place.

18 2022-11-08 JP SFL Section 9 Day 2

18.1 Warmup

Today we have Yamato and Hameko on commentary.

Hameko’s Choice is another Best Bout highlight of 2 matches. Shuto vs Fuudo in the Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Anchor match is up first. Shuto won 3-2, Hameko wanted to highlight gauge management. At one point Fuudo had about 2.5 EX Gauge and about half life left, so decided to eat two throws to gain close to full bar and full VT gauge. Stun was getting to be a problem so he activated into V-Trigger into CA. So look for when you can manage your gauge to get an advantage.

The second match is the anchor match between DNG vs. FAV Gaming with Takeuchi John Cody and Tokido Luke. Tokido was able to use standing light punch well (something new in the Cody match). Hameko highlighted a time when Cody wanted to EX Zonk (or face a timeout) looking at inputs he was using light and heavy punch. Cody couldn’t retaliate to blocked light punch because he was charging Zonk (and needs light punch for that.) John changed from light punch to medium punch, but was too slow. Tokido won with a trade on Zonk – John didn’t have time to charge the EX Zonk. Hameko found that interaction really interesting.

For the matchup predictions for Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs Good 8 Squad, last time they presented what they thought the matchup might be but now thinks Crusher might target Kawano Kolin. Gunfight Alex might target Pugera Boxer. Storm Kubo will likely face Dogura in the Anchor match.

For Shinobism Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto Johnny G will target YHC-Mochi. Momochi Cody might go for Shuto Urien in the Anchor spot.

18.2 Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. Good 8 Squad

Storm Kubo Abigail vs. Dogura Dictator is up first. Dogura says he thought he might run into Storm Kubo, and prepared for all his characters. It’s been a while since he’s played him in tournament, and will do his best. Storm Kubo says “I’m going!” He didn’t go well though, and lost 0-2.

Inaba Dictator vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun says that he’s after points in the away situation, and he’s played a lot of Dictator with Dogura and others, so he wants to show the fruits of that labor. Inaba says they decided early he’d face Rashid, so he practiced hard for it. He wants to win this for his team, and for Naoki (Storm Kubo’s first name). Also Naoki has been a topic lately, with Nemo sharing the name. Super close, but Inaba won it 2-1.

Crusher Birdie vs. Pugera Boxer. Pugera (who always says the hardest things to translate) says that he knows how Crusher moves down to the level of each of his individual joints, and there’s no way that Crusher can even respond in any way against him. Yamato says “Oh, I see” and someone laughs (on Good 8 Squad) “What do you mean you understand?” They joke around saying well it should be a good match, what’s the best way to respond to that, etc. Crusher is more standard, says that Inaba did a great job getting them some points, and he wants to continue that momentum with a win. Pugera won it 3-0.

Good 8 Squad gets the win. They start the interview with Pugera. He talked about his previous loss and how that hurt the team, and he was thinking about how to improve on that. They recently had their Good 8 Squad Caravan (events Capcom has been putting on where each team goes to their home base and they do stuff with fans, have a tournament, exhibitions, etc.) and lots of people were cheering him on. He thought if he could win then he would get back to 0 overall points (turning himself into a big Japanese Daikon radish, maybe like saying a donut in basketball terms). Hameko repeats Daikon and busts out laughing. Says he doesn’t know how to respond to that.

They move on to Kawano, who didn’t play. He says that iXA has Oro and Alex, and those characters are hard to prepare for as there aren’t many people playing them. He says that their team has two “strange people” that play those characters (I know Kawano has an Oro) so they didn’t have a concern there. Hameko wonders whether he isn’t insulting Oro and Alex mains by calling them all weirdos. They ask Dogura about his win. He says that they all were preparing against characters that they don’t usually play lately, but he feels like the more you play against those rare characters the harder it is for your opponent. That’s why people are happy to see them win under FT2 rules in a tournament.

Finally they turn to Gachi-kun asking about the next match. He says that he wished he had won to get the full 40 points, but the team win is what is important. Next is DNG and they are away. If they can get some points as away they are looking pretty good in the rankings, so they will do their best.

18.3 Shinobism Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto

Yamaguchi Luke vs. Higuchi Guile. Higuchi says that he’s known Yamaguchi a long time, they are friends, and they are also the same age, and he’s looking forward to fighting him on this big stage. He doesn’t think it’s possible for him to lose, he’s going to do his best and win. Hameko comments that he thinks Higuchi is playing mind games by not adding an honorific to Yamaguchi’s name (e.g., san, kun). Yamaguchi responds that there probably aren’t many chances remaining to play Higuchi-kun in SFV on a big stage like this, so he will enjoy it and win. Yamaguchi-kun won it pretty convincingly 2-0.

Johnny G vs. YHC-Mochi as predicted. YHC-Mochi says the match with G is a hot one, and he’s practiced so that he can win it. Johnny says the team and his individual matches have been going very well, and he thinks he has been matched up with people well. He prepared notes on YHC-Mochi (he showed it to the camera) and will do his best. YHC-Mochi wins 2-0.

Momochi Cody vs. Shuto Urien. Shuto says that YHC-Mochi got them the points, so there won’t be an overtime match, so he’s really hot now (continuing a theme from YHC-Mochi’s interview lining up with Dhalsim). He thinks a lot of the people watching expect Momochi to win, but if he can win, it will lead to a new self and be important for him and showing his growth (calling back a bit to his talk of having a “small Mago” inside himself). I want to overcome this obstacle and beat Momochi so I can evolve myself. If there is anything you don’t understand – here Yamato breaks in (Shuto was talking pretty quickly the whole time) and thanks him. Momochi says he expected Shuto in the Anchor spot, so he’s prepared. If he just plays as normal he will win. Shuto won 3-2.

They ask Shuto how he feels about the win, and he says he’s happy but feels like they still need to win a lot more in the second half. This was also the toughest match he’s had so far, and thinks they can get to 1st place. The ask Nemo about the win, and he says that Higuchi has really saved them, and he’s really happy to see people other than Higuchi stepping up. Nemo also helped YHC-Mochi prepare, and is really happy to see him win. YHC-Mochi said he expected Johnny G, and he said “I have Yanai” (call back to the famous Tokido “I have Mago” EVO quote). Yanai is a well-known G player. He was able to train with him, and got good advice from Nemo. Finally they turn to Higuchi, who is unhappy he lost. He thought he was good at the Luke match, but Yamaguchi has some particular ways to his play. He wants to do better in the second half.

Nemo says that getting 30 points as the away team they can see a way to the top, and he thinks Shuto won’t lose (his team is like wow!)

19 2022-11-11 JP SFL Section 10 Day 1

19.1 Warmup

We have our dependable duo of Hameko and Aru on commentary.

Today’s Hameko’s Choice is a best bout about Yamaguchi Luke vs. Higuchi Guile. Originally Higuchi was also on Shinobism gaming, so he came up with Yamaguchi under Momochi’s tutelage, and they are the same age. They talked a bit about how Higuchi didn’t use an honorific for Yamaguchi (the so-called “yobi-sute”) – Higuchi “graduated” first and went on to be a Pro with Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto. Hameko wants to highlight how top players think and focuses on the first third round of the first game when Yamaguchi corned Higuchi at 74 seconds. Yamaguchi uses Luke’s chasing heavy kick after throwing Higuchi (which is apparently hard from a timing point of view? I don’t know Luke at all.) He’s +1 on block, Guile has a 4 frame crouching jab, so Luke can frametrap. Yamaguchi uses standing jab, and is at -4, so Guile can get out a crouching light punch. Yamaguchi keeps a distance where that whiffs though, and Yamaguchi had already put out forward medium punch, and gets a counter punch. Hameko talks a bit about Guile’s risk reward for crouching light kick which has longer range. Top players research all this stuff.

Hameko continued talking about Mago’s choices with Luke and other risk/reward counter options.

Predictions for Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Good 8 Squad are that Uryo Rose will likely face Kawano Kolin. Pugera Boxer might be in tough spot with hard matchups with G and Laura (Nauman) so they don’t think he will be in the Anchor spot even though he’s really been contributing lately. Nauman Luke would likely target Dogura’s Dictator. Either Itazan or Takeuchi John would likely face Gachi-kun.

Predictions for Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto are that Dhalsim has a tough match with Alex, so YHC-Mochi likely won’t play. Inaba Dictator is likely to target Higuchi Guile since he can deal with projectiles, Gunfight Oro is likely to face Shuto Urien, with Storm Kubo Dan vs. Nemo Urien (again, a battle of Naokis).

19.2 Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Good 8 Squad

They talked a bit about lag that happened with Momochi vs. Shuto, and announce that since they only heard about the lag after the match, the match results stand as they are. If the players let the organizers know about lag, they will reset routers and battle lounges and so on to try to address it (there may be additional delays as this happens) but the goal is to have the best play environment for players so please as viewers keep that in mind and forgive any impact that may have on the stream / broadcast.

First up is Itazan G vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun says that last time he had a really bad experience with Itazan and Johnny’s G and lost twice. He watched the matches again yesterday and he got really pissed off at how much Itazan was grinning and smiling, so he really wants to win this time. Aru prompts Itazan by saying that Gachi-kun really is unhappy with G now, and he wants to wipe out those bad memories. Itazan says that he understands how he feels and that it’s gotten that bad for him. He wants to make sure that Gachi-kun keeps that bitter taste in his mouth after their battle. Gachi-kun wins 2-1.

Takeuchi John Cody vs. Kawano Kolin. Kawano says that he thinks it will be a tough fight, but he’ll do his best. Takeuchi John says that he knows Kawano has been doing secret training with Tachikawa (he signed an “exclusive training partner” deal with Good 8 Squad before the season started) so thinks he might know a lot about the match, but he’s prepared to do what it takes to win. He did, and won 2-0.

Uryo Rose vs. Dogura Dictator. Dogura says that the last time he faced Uryo-kun in a tournament was 10 years ago, and he lost. He doesn’t really remember, but he wants revenge for that loss 10 or 15 years ago now. Uryo says that he really respects Dogura-kun as an Osaka player (like him) that does a lot, but that has nothing to do with this current competition where he wants to show just how strong Rose is. Super close, and Dogura takes it 3-2. I really enjoy watching Rose, don’t get to see a lot of her at high level.

Since Good 8 Squad won, they get the final interview. They start with Gachi-kun, who doesn’t sound too happy that he lost. He says that Itazan is really aware, and he played a lot with Yanai and other Gs, but in the end he lost and couldn’t turn things around from the first half. But they did get the team win and that’s super important now. He said he got a taste of some good soup today. He also said this was the first time he used the command to take off clothes from the costume, and it has a ring and piercing on it, which was great, on Rashid’s costume – the one that only he can use.

They turn to Kawano who says this is his second loss in a row, and it’s really tough. The level in this league is just super high. When Aru tells him that they got the team win, he says his teammates are super strong, and he’s got to reflect on that himself because they are so strong and he’s been losing. He wants to contribute more and will keep practicing. They ask Pugera his thoughts as the bench player, he says this is the 3rd time he’s been the reserve this year, and now he’s realized that he’s more nervous in that position than when he’s playing. You can really concentrate when you play, but you feel like a parent when you are watching, so he’s really happy they have strong players that can win even under difficult situations. He’s going to work hard so he can appear in all the rest of their matches from here on out.

They ask Dogura about his Anchor match. He said that when he won in the overtime match when he was in that, he said “I showed you everything you need to see” (and nothing more – a reference to a famous manga panel from Garoden) and today it wasn’t that but (he says something that sounds like a reference or set phrase 搾りかすはでまへん – which sounds to me like I can’t squeeze more blood from this stone. Using his Osaka accent too.) He thought it was really tough up to the final round, and Uryo’s Rose (even though it is Rose) was really strong. When he was able to get a set or a round he could see out of the corner of his eye his teammates faces on the screen, and they were all clapping super hard when he won and Kawano was especially super happy (Kawano says No!) and I wanted to make them even more happy so I tried even harder. Kawano says that he was the most uneasy / nervous while watching. Pugera said something I couldn’t catch either. But he was able to win out in the end, so it was good, and he won’t say anything else.

19.3 Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto

First up is Gunfight Oro vs. Nemo Urien. Nemo makes a funny face and talks in a funny voice when Aru says that he will face Gunfight: Oh no, they’ve got me, I expected Storm Kubo so those are the only characters I practiced for! (I really can’t tell if he is serious or joking. He also was almost positively doing a bad Mago impression.) But I still think I’ll beat Gunfight. Aru says that Nemo looks like he’s revved up, and Gunfight speaks a bunch of French. Aru and Hameko play along “Uh huh, I see, right” and finish with a Merci. I have no idea what Gunfight said. Looks like he got a nice haircut though. After it’s all done Hameko screams out “I didn’t understand any of it!!” Nemo won it 2-0.

Crusher Birdie vs. Shuto Urien. He says that he’s been friends with Crusher for a long time, views him as a senpai and while he’s excited to play him on this large stage, he also knows how Crusher plays more than anyone else. He prepared, and wants to thoroughly destroy him. Aru prompts Crusher telling him that Shuto says he knows more about how Crusher plays than anyone else, and he says that Shuto has been winning in tournaments a lot lately, but he thinks it would really be good for their team’s motivation if he can stop him here. It was a real close time-out, but Shuto won 2-1.

Inaba Dictator vs. Higuchi Guile. Higuchi says he’s practiced up for Dictator, and since his teammates got two wins already he’s aiming for all 40 points. Inaba says when he was prepping for Dhalsim he practiced with YHC-Mochi, but this time since he knew he would face Higuchi, he prepared with Kami (which could be a handle, or could be his way of saying he prepped with divinity.) Higuchi won 3-1.

Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto gets the sweep and 40 points, so they get the final interview. Aru asks questions in the order that they played, starting with Nemo. He’s really happy to get the 40 points, and it brings them closer to the top, and as they get more points they see the value in practice, and the team spirit is really in a good state right now. Nemo says that he also used to use Oro, so he was confident in the match, and wasn’t too worried about having to prepare for it. Shuto says that their team is strong. And in fact they haven’t lost since they had the Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto caravan in Kumamoto. He’s happy that he won, but Higuchi is really strong. He’s thinking about that himself, just how strong is Higuchi, and how can he reflect on that, and win more in the future himself. YHC-Mochi says that the iXA team is a tough one for him with the characters that they play, and people that he doesn’t want to play, but since it is a team battle and they have strong team members he can rely on he’s grateful. This is also a consecutive win and he’s looking forward to more of those.

Higuchi says that he’s been losing since Section 7, three times, so he really wanted to win. Since he thought he would face Dictator, he asked the devil (the Ikoma Devil I believe, aka Dogura) and he was able to win with the spirit of the devil.

20 2022-11-15 JP SFL Section 10 Day 2

20.1 Warmup

We’ve got Yamato and Hameko today.

Hameko does a kind of highlight and summary of the first half of the league.

Hameko opens showing a graph with Good 8 Squad’s points and their very nice performance, he talks about how everyone on the team can win points, and that in a League where everyone is talking about Luke and Cody their team doesn’t have any Lukes or Codys. Kawano’s been on fire, particularly with his secret Lucia over Fuudo’s poison.

Then he highlights Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto, and the contribution of their young players Higuchi and Shuto. FAV Gaming lost in the first half, but has started to pick things up with contributions from Tokido Luke. In the 5th Section Shinobism Gaming’s younger players (Yamaguchi) got some wins, and Momochi got the anchor win. Cody is seen as a disadvantage when away because he can be counter-picked, but Momochi still won against Dictator and Dhalsim. Gyogun had trouble getting points early on, but once Machabo’s Necali was able to play things went better, and maybe he has some other hidden characters like Lucia.

Predictions for vPlus FAV Gaming vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom. Last time FAV got 30 points as the away team. Akira Cammy should target Bon-chan Luke, it’s likely that Fuudo will be Anchor with two characters. Daigo would probably be handled with Tokido Luke or Torimeshi Dhalsim, but Torimeshi could also target Fuudo Poison (who may pull out Mika). Maybe Daigo would be Anchor with his high win rate too though. sako Menta would target Nari-kun Akira.

For Gyogun vs. Shinobism Gaming. Moke Falke might target Momochi Cody (last time Mizuha lost in the mirror.) Mago Luke would probably take on a Luke, or maybe Moke. Hameko thinks maybe Machabo might find something for Momochi.

20.2 vPlus FAV Gaming vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom

Torimeshi Dhalsim vs. Daigo Guile. Daigo says that he doesn’t have a great record against Torimeshi, but this is a really important match and he can’t afford to lose it. Torimeshi (strangely!) says that this order is a little bit messed up, but he’s also trained up on the Guile match and wants to make a contribution to the team with a win. (I’m pretty sure this is because Fuudo went last with Mika instead of Poison, throwing FAV’s plans out of whack.) Hameko makes similar comments. Wow, Torimeshi put on a show, winning 2-0.

Bon-chan Luke vs. Akira Cammy. Akira expected Bon-chan, and so has been playing the Luke match endlessly for the past two weeks. He’s been playing Luke so much and with so much intensity that when he has a Luke match he starts laughing, and he looks forward to showing off his great progress. (Or, as a homonym, his new Frame of Mind for the match – the great progress one is more likely but less colorful.) Bon-chan answers with a forceful “hai!” and in exaggerated movements declares “I’ll do some work!” with a wild guts pose. He’s always a character. Bon-chan did indeed do the work, winning 2-0.

Tokido Luke vs. Fuudo Mika. Fuudo says that they’ve done a good job of being driven into a corner, but he thinks that today Mika vs. Luke is in Mika’s favor. (People on his team say “just today”, and Fuudo repeats it, just today.) He’ll do his best. Tokido (almost positively imitating Mago – everyone loves doing that) says “That was a really good win. Bon-chan finally put on some heat, so I’m going to explode!” Hameko comments that it sounds like Tokido is trying to rile up his teammates. Bon-chan was making Viscous Bald Eagle of commentary flying poses the whole time Tokido was talking him up. Fuudo switched to Poison after the first loss, but lost 2-3 overall.

FAV gets the big 40 point win. Bon-chan looks super happy. They start with Tokido and ask him about the 40 point win. He said it was really important, and they had a lot of time to prepare (2 weeks), they plotted their strategy, watched what their opponents were doing from the shadows, had some really intense conversations, and decided on their approach. He thought that was borne out in the very end with this result. Asked about his match, Torimeshi says that he prepared for Guile, Poison, and Luke, and he was supposed to face Fuudo if he used Poison. He wondered what they should do if starts with Mika though and they talked about it the day before and decided to go the way they went with him taking on Daigo. He’s really glad it worked out. Yamato asks Bon-chan about his match that he seemed super psyched to win, and he says that he was finally able to do his job. At a home game. He’s really happy, excited for the 40 points, particularly since it is Nagoya. They really put in the work to reach #1. They have another match soon on Friday so he’ll do his best again.

Finally they turn to sako, who was the bench player. He’s super happy his team got 40 points, even though he expected that. (Everyone laughs.) They play Good 8 Squad next and get to numb- (someone on the team – Torimeshi? – interrupts and says “Use G”) and sako says he’ll use G (Gachi-kun has been having trouble with G lately). Lost more laughing, something Bon-chan says I can’t make out.

20.3 Gyogun vs. Shinobism Gaming

Mago Luke vs. Yamaguchi Luke. Mago rolled his L (doing an impression of himself?) and had to repeat it since the commentary couldn’t make him out due to his noise cancelling system. Yamaguchi says he’s played the mirror match a lot with Fujimura, so he’ll do his best. Mago says that their opponents battle formation is exactly what he expected, but he did lost to Yamaguchi once before, and he wants to make up for that. He’ll win! Mago got his revenge 2-0.

Mizuha Cody vs. Fujimura Luke. Fujimura says that there are two really loud and annoying people in Gyogun (no disrespect meant to Mizuha) so he wants to win [to shut them up]. Hameko prompts Mizuha with that, Mago laughs, and Moke says in a really loud voice HEY HEY HEY WHAT WAS THAT? Mago is making noise, the commentary team tells them to calm down, etc. Mago blames Machabo (who is very quiet). Commentary asks for Mizuha’s comments again. Mizuha tells the others to shut up, and apologizes to Fujimura for them, and says he’ll do his best. Hameko and Yamato talk about how Moke and Mago have a pretty good comedy routine down with Mizuha acting the straight man. Fujimura wins 2-1.

Machabo Dictator vs. Cody Momochi. Momochi says that when he peeked at Machabo’s CFN, he had played about 100 matches of Dictator vs. Cody, and he thought that maybe he’s putting on a show of hard work (with the implication that Machabo’s old) and this might be a mis-direction. But he thinks Machabo is a strong player, and can use lots of characters. This is his first time playing against his Dictator though, and he hopes to put on a good show. Hameko also said he thought it was a trap too. Machabo says that he did a lot of work for this match, and he thinks personally that Momochi is the strongest player in Japan right now. It’s a real honor to fight with him here. That’s neither here nor there though, and he wants to win. Momochi wins 3-0.

Shinobism gets the Away team win 30-10, so they get the final interview. Yamato asks Yamaguchi about his match, even though he lost. Everyone wanted to win that first game, and he played to win, but lost in the end. Fujimura and Momochi both had great games and won though, so he wants to thank them. Fujimura says that he got great advice from the team in real time, and practical stuff like “do a neutral jump now” and that really led to the win. He wants to thank the team for the win. Yamato asks Momochi about Machabo’s Dictator, and he says that he really likes Machabo as a player, and thinks Machabo’s playstyle is very similar to his own. Momochi thinks that Dictator is actually a hard character for someone like Machabo to use who has very high standards, and the skill to do anything. Momochi also used Dictator for a while but he wasn’t able to bring out the demon like Dogura can, and he thought Machabo would have trouble with that too. He thinks it’s a real reflection of himself, and he was able to think how he would play, and based his strategy on that line of thinking. [Very interesting stuff.]

They ask Johnny what he thought as the reserve player, and he thinks getting 30 points was critical. Next week is Nagoya, and those points are really critical too. They turn to Momochi and he said that Johnny really sounds like their leader. Johnny said he thought he should bring things to a close. Momochi says that it’s just like Johnny said, if they win their next one they are in a good place to take the lead, and last time they lost to Nagoya, so it’s a chance for revenge as well.

21 2022-11-18 JP SFL Section 11 Day 1

21.1 Warmup

We’ve got Aru and Hameko on commentary today.

The tickets for the SFL JP Playoffs apparently went on sale, so they are going to look back at the previous playoffs. 5000 JPY for the playoffs and grand finals. The grand finals also has in-person tickets (January 21st Saturday from 1pm) with 6000 JPY tickets for preferred seating or 5000 for general seating.

They have some fun clips of Mago talking about Bon-chan, and Bon-chan making silly faces. They have some of the interview discussion, etc.

Match-up predictions for Shinobism Gaming vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom Hameko expects Fuudo to be the Anchor with Momochi facing him. They expect Daigo’s Guile to show up, and Yamaguchi Guile to face him. They aren’t sure whether Nari-kun or Akira will show up, but in either case they think Fujimura will take them on, and in the case of Cammy he might revive his Chun-Li.

Match-up predictions for Good 8 Squad and v6 Plus FAV gaming. Hameko thinks it is hard to predict what will happen here, and says there is a chance that sako brings out his G, since Kawano and Gachi-kun have both had trouble with G. Dogura Dictator is likely to face sako in that case. Pugera’s Boxer has been strong against Luke and will likely face Bon-chan if he shows up since he destroyed him previously. Tokido might show up as the Anchor since he can change to Urien, and perhaps Gachi-kun would take him on. If Torimeshi Dhalsim comes out, Pugera will likely face him.

21.2 Shinobism vs. Nagoya OJA BODY STAR

Momochi Cody vs. Fuudo Poison. This was as predicted, but not in the Anchor slot! Fuudo says that their strategy was to draw out Momochi in the first match, so they succeeded in calling him out there. Fuudo’s confident he will win this match, and the ones after it. Aru asks Momochi what he thinks about “being drawn out”, and he says that this is going exactly according to their plan – they predicted the exact players, characters, and order. He is prepared to take Fuudo on in the first match. He did lose to Fuudo when they met for the first time but he will get his revenge. Fuudo won 2-0.

Fujimura Luke vs. Nari-kun Akira. Nari-kun said he didn’t hear who his opponent is (I guess they don’t have the video feed?) and once they told him he said that is going according to plan. He’ll do his best to keep his team from getting into a tight spot. Aru said that this is what he’s been waiting for (a Luke) and he says he’ll go all out to win. Fujimura says he heard that Nari-kun has been putting in a lot of work for the Luke matchup, so he’s a bit scared, but he’s also put in a lot of work and is looking forward to the match. Fujimura won 2-0.

Yamaguchi Luke vs. Daigo Guile. Aru prompts Daigo by saying that Yamaguchi, who beat Higuchi, is his opponent. Daigo says that he plays the Luke match every day, and he’s been assigned this important Anchor match so he can’t lose. There’s some pressure from that, but he’s going to win to make a big contribution to the team. Aru says that Yamaguchi is under pressure in this match too, and he agrees, but says that the reason he started playing Fighting games is because of Daigo, and he really wants to surpass him. He’s going to play with pride and do his best. Daigo won 3-1.

Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom gets the 30-10 win, and they get the final interview. Aru asks Fuudo what he thinks, and he says after watching that Anchor battle, he’s glad that he went up first. Aru asked if things went according to plan – since Fuudo said they wanted to call out Momochi first, and he said that’s right, it would have been the sequence they wanted if they were the home team. Aru asks Nari-kun about his thoughts, and he puts on a bit of a show running his hands through his hair saying “I’m terrible, I’m no good” etc. He’ll do his best from here. Then he laughs a bit, and it looked like Aru was going to move on, but then he says “No wait, should I push him a bit?” and continues the conversation. Nari-kun says that they have their Caravan show coming up, and if he doesn’t start showing some results Daigo’s fanbois are going to really work him over, so he’ll do his best. Aru asks Akira for comments, and he says he just doesn’t know what to say looking at those results. They were good matches, and he’s grateful to have such a reliable team.

Aru says that Daigo played a good Anchor match, and he hadn’t been in that position before. Daigo says he’s happy, and probably he’s put the most work into the Luke match of any other. No matter how much you prepare though, there are innumerable ways to lose, so all you can do is gather experience. So he tried to think about how Yama(guchi) would play and prepared that way. Aru asks him if this was a match that he put a lot of effort into, and he said yes, but really he had Fuudo behind him, throwing high speed rocks (people are starting to laugh at this image) and he thought he really needed to take the Anchor spot pretty soon. Aru doesn’t think it could have been that bad! He felt some pressure but put a lot of spirit and fight into it. It was an important match so he really practiced a lot for it. Aru says they don’t have that many matches left, and it looks like Daigo will really help carry the team. Daigo says that it looks like Nari-kun hasn’t flipped his switch yet, and he expects pretty soon he’ll start (production cuts to a wide show of all 4 people and Nari-kun is nodding along, looks like he’s really feeling the pressure and apologizing.)

21.3 Good 8 Squad and v6 Plus FAV gaming

Pugera Boxer vs. Bon-chan Luke. Bon-chan says, “huh. I see” when Aru says that he will face Pugera. He thinks he’ll do ok. Aru says that Bon-chan thinks he’ll do ok against Pugera, and he responds he thinks the same thing. He feels the same way. He says this is the second time he’ll face Bon-chan in SFL, and in the SFL you can’t use the same techniques twice, that’s just common sense.

Of course he was referencing something – in this case Saint Seiya, which I know nothing about. You can watch this six minute nico nico douga video that should have the scene in there. I don’t know enough about the characters / setting / anime to try to get through it, but I’m confident he’s referencing Saint Seiya. That didn’t help him though, Bon-chan won 2-0.

Gachi-kun Rashid vs. Torimeshi Dhalsim. Aru asks Torimeshi about facing Gachi-kun, but people are talking and I can’t hear anything. Aru says “Hey everybody, Torimeshi is talking now!” to get them to shut up. Torimeshi says that most people say that Rashid has the advantage in the match-up, but actually it’s true. But even then, if he can stop every Rashid jump, every wall-cling, and every whirlwind, he can win. Gachi-kun says he has prepared well, and it’s his turn now. He’ll show us his good style. His style was good, Gachi-kun won 2-0.

Kawano Kolin vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido says that he’s gotten confident with Luke lately, and he’s looking forward to the match (more specifically tasting it.) Aru asks if he expected Kawano, and Tokido says that he prepared for him. Aru says that Tokido thinks Luke can handle Kolin, and Kawano says that he’s worked hard enough at this match that he’s given up being human. Aru notes that when Kawano says that he usually wins. That wasn’t true this time; Tokido won 3-1.

v6 Plus FAV Gaming got the 30-10 win, so they get the final interview (Whew, dodged another Pugera mystery.) Aru tells Bon-chan that his opponent said he couldn’t win using the same tactics (that Saint Seiya thing) but Bon-chan did win. He said something about having watched the scene where they lost before, but he didn’t feel like they really lost. Aru thanks him for the explanation that is easy enough for everyone to understand. He says that Pugera has been a Luke killer, and he practiced a lot, and he’s really satisfied now with the win. Torimeshi said after that loss to Gachi-kun’s Rashid he wants to play a whole bunch more Rashid matches in a lounge, but the FAV team members are all really strong, and he feels like his usefulness to the team is done. Aru says that Torimeshi was able to call Gachi-kun out to face him though, which is itself a contribution. Torimeshi says well maybe he’s just here to be second-place (or something like that, assuming 2位役 is the right interpretation.) Aru asks sako his thoughts, and he says that the team is really strong. He thought the first match with Pugera and Bon-chan was really tough, but Bon-chan pulled out the win. Aru asked whether sako has a G, but sako said it wasn’t good enough to bring out. Aru says that the Grand Finals and Playoffs are coming so there might be a chance.

Turning to Tokido in the Anchor match, he says he’s really happy with the Anchor win. Even though they were the away team, they had a lot of confidence in the character matches, and that was big for them. What he was worried most about is right before the match sako saying that he will take the Anchor spot with G, but he was glad that didn’t happen. Aru said that Kawano’s Kolin supposedly gave up being human, and wondered if Tokido noticed anything different about Kawano’s play? He said he thought Kawano kept a good distance for playing against Luke, and played well. It was hard to play at that distance and they used up a lot of time in the matches. Aru says that Bon-chan won well, and Tokido was strong in his win, and it looks like the defending champion team is getting into form. Tokido says they are confident, and even though Torimeshi lost he had a lot of confidence going into the match. (Torimeshi says thank you, thank you) and Tokido wants to thank the people that helped them practice (Noble, a strong Kolin) and everyone’s really gotten a lot stronger.

22 2022-11-22 JP SFL Section 11 Day 2

22.1 Warmup

Today we have Yamato and Hameko on commentary. Since tickets are on sale for the Grand Final / Playoffs (streaming service tickets – the show will streamed a week or two later for free also – and in-person Grand Final tickets) Hameko looks back at the previous Playoffs / Grand Final.

Hameko talks about the playoffs semi-finals when FAV Gaming faced Mildom Beast, and they were tied, so it came down to a FT1 between Daigo and Tokido, which Tokido won. Then Tokido was also in the last match with Gachi-kun for finals, and won that. So Tokido has had a big impact on SFL.

In the preview for Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA, and they expect Inaba to take the Anchor with Dictator. We might see Nauman Luke or Uryo Rose face him, or maybe Itazan G. Itazan Abigail will likely face Crusher Birdie. Alex Gunfight might come out, and Takeuchi John would likely face him. If Storm Kubo Abigail shows up, Uryo Rose would be a good match.

For Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Gyogun they expect YHC-Mochi to face Mizuha Cody since he beat him in the previous JP World Warrior event. Mago Luke will likely be handled by Shuto Urien, with Higuchi taking on Moke. Nemo might face Machabo, and YHC-Mochi also might take on Mago.

22.2 Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA

Itazan Abigail vs. Storm Kubo Alex, as predicted. He says that he wants to take the concern that he has around the opposing team coming to crush them and the incredible offensive power that he ran into last time, and smash that into Itazan head on. Itazan says that he did fight Storm Kubo in the first half in the Abigail mirror, but seeing that he’s coming with Alex, and that he can change characters if he loses, he’s not sure how it will go but looks forward to seeing it out. Storm Kubo gets his first win of the season, winning 2-1.

Uryo Rose vs. Crusher Birdie. Crusher says he expected Itazan. He says Rose’s long range and projectiles are hard to deal with, but if he can handle that he can will. Uryo says both characters have long reach, so he thinks the mid-range will be important. He will whiff punish in mid range and show us the strength of Rose. Uryo won 2-0.

Nauman Luke vs. Inaba Dictator. Inaba wants to continue their momentum and win. More interestingly, he said that Nauman apparently likes his TEAM iXA character (which is a female version of himself) so he wants to win and make Nauman into a female character. Nauman laughs a bit when Hameko explains that exchange to him, and he says that it seems like Inaba really put a lot of thought into how to dis him. Dictator is also known as an evil Demon, and so in this case he’s the hero and will win for justice. He was able to do that, and Nauman won 3-2.

Here’s the tweet where Nauman says he likes the looks of Nauman’s female character, and here’s the actual character. It cracks me up that in one of the comments I read, Fuudo’s wife, Kuramochi Yuka, says that the character has nice thighs. Yuka is, in general, great.

DNG gets the 30-10 win. Itazan says that he had some sloppy play on his part, but Uryo and Nauman had good matches and he was really moved. Uryo said that he was able to play like he wanted to, if Birdie doesn’t have any EX gauge the match is really hard, he’d get damage here and there and then win with the trigger. He’s happy about it. Nauman says he’s super happy, he finally got a win in the final game final round, making a contribution. Instead of thinking “ah, I was just a little bit short!” instead he thought he made some good decisions. He named three players he played a lot of Dictator matches with (couldn’t catch them – I wasn’t familiar) and thanked them for the matches. They ask Takeuchi John his thoughts, and he said that their opponent didn’t have many characters that were favorable for Cody, so he had to ask the others to go up, and everyone had good matches. He’s really happy to get the team win, and it really helps for his own motivation. He’ll do his best so he can play too.

Itazan in the final comment says DNG is going to keep on doing their best until the end.

22.3 Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto vs. Gyogun

YHC-Mochi Dhalsim vs. Mizuha Cody. Mizuha says that he thinks this will be the last Dhalsim match until the Grand Finals, so he put in a lot of practice. He wasn’t able to do well last time, but this time he’ll win! YHC-Mochi says he thinks this is a favorable matchup for Dhalsim, and he also has a good read on Mizuha, so he will win to set a good pace for the team. YHC-Mochi wins 2-0.

Nemo Urien vs. Machabo Necali. Machabo says that in this desperate battle for points, he really wants to win. He’s been friends with Nemo for a long time, but he still wants to win. Nemo says that he’s lived every day eating command grabs and his mentality has just been devastated, and today that will end. He’s going to win and not take any command grabs at all. Machabo won 2-1. Nemo almost went without taking any command grabs but in the last round he got hit by two in a row, and Yamato and Hameko went nuts when that happened. Nemo backdashed a final EX command throw, but lost in the end.

Shuto Urien vs. Mago Luke. Mago says this is the “big Mago” – a callback to when Shuto talked about how he has a “little Mago” inside himself giving him advice. He said he did teach Shuto a lot at one point, and he said this and that about a little Mago, but the Big Mago is super strong, and I’ll show that to you. Shuto responds that he doesn’t know what Mago is talking about, but it is important in this league to be able to beat Luke. So he’ll show his efforts preparing for Luke. This isn’t about beating Mago, he’s going to beat Luke. Shuto wins 3-1.

Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto gets the 30-10 win, so they have the final interview. YHC-Mochi says he doesn’t think Cody can win, and he practiced with a lot of people this time. If you just don’t get panicked by Cody’s high damage output and play a solid neutral game you should win. Of course, it was close, but he still won 2-0, and thought it was a good match. Nemo says that he absolutely hates command grabs, and Machabo sent a few his way. Hameko says that there were three in a row at the end, and Nemo says yeah he tried to get out with an invincible move, but thankfully his teammates are strong and played well.

Shuto says up until now the characters that he fought he always thought that with enough preparation he had the advantage, but with Luke no matter how hard you work it won’t go above 50-50. He was really worried about that, and would cry at night, wasn’t able to sleep. Somehow he was able to win with what he found though, and he’s super happy about it. He once again thought that it is super hard to beat a Pro. (Then he says – how’s that for bringing things to a close? Pretty good, right?) His team cheers him on.

Yamato asked Nemo for thoughts on the upcoming match, when everyone said “what about Higuchi?” So they turned to him. He says it was the first time he was the reserve, and since he plays Guile there were many cases where he might go up. He believes in his team, and is very happy for the win. He also practiced a lot so they would believe in him, and he’s ready for the next time.

Nemo says the upcoming games are very important for the playoffs, and he might make Shuto cry every night, but the Luke matches are going to be very important coming up.

23 2022-11-25 JP SFL Section 12 Day 1

23.1 Warmup

Aru and Hameko are on commentary today. On Hameko’s Choice they highlight some “best bouts” from Section 10. The first match is the Day 1 Anchor match between DNG and Good 8 Squad, Uryo Rose vs. Dogura Dictator. Uryo went up 2-0, but Dogura brought it back with an EX Devil’s Reverse in the final game, final round. He explains the final sequence where Rose was cornered with high stun, and how Dogura was attacking. The final sequence they go frame by frame, and talk about why the EX Soul Bind didn’t hit – EX Devil’s Reverse was able to avoid it but head press would not have.

Hameko predicts what the line ups might look like for Gyogun vs. Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming. Last time they met Gyogun got 40 points as the away team. Mago’s Luke would likely take on Itazan’s G. Mizuha Cody would target Nauman’s Luke. Machabo Dictator would go after Takeuchi John’s Cody. Moke Rashid would likely face Uryo Rose. If Machabo doesn’t use his Dictator, Mago might take his Luke against Nauman’s, and Mizuha’s Cody would face Takeuchi John’s Cody, and Machabo’s Necali would face Itazan G.

For Shinobism Gaming vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA, where Shinobism also got 40 points as the away team, Hameko expects Inaba Dictator as the Anchor with Fujimura Luke going after him since he’s been practicing that a lot. Johnny G would perhaps face Crusher’s Birdie, but maybe Momochi Cody as well. Johnny G might face Alex or Oro as well. Yamaguchi Luke could face Storm Kubo.

23.2 Gyogun vs. Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming

Mago Luke vs. Nauman Luke is up first. Mago was all like “If there’s a Luke, I’ve got to go and get ’em.” Aru says that Mago was looking for the mirror match, to which Nauman says that Mago’s really been shooting for the Luke mirror match. This will be his first time in that position, but he expected it would happen eventually. He’s been secretly practicing for it, and has a secret weapon that he finally gets a chance to use. He’s looking forward to it. In response to Nauman having a secret weapon, Mago responds that it’s probably suppressor or VT2, but he doesn’t think there can be many secret weapons in this matchup. Mago says that he’ll use his true power to wrestle down Nauman’s Luke and win. (Said in a way that he’s doing Nauman the favor of actually going all out and not holding back.) It was a close match (and Nauman did use VS2 and Suppressor) but Mago won 2-1.

Next up is Machabo Necali vs. Itazan G, who Mago calls “the Ultimate anti-Itazan weapon”. In response to Machabo being an ultimate anti-Itazan weapon, Itazan says well, I guess Masahiro from Bounty has come for him. Bounty Masahiro is a reference to a series TOPANGA ran – the Bounty Masahiro series – where if you beat Machabo in a FT10 you would win 100,000 JPY. There were 8 of those, and Machabo won 6 of them. Itazan says that he made multiple sacrifices in preparation (which makes Aru laugh – you made [human / animal / religious] sacrifices?) Yes, he did! Looking forward to a good match, etc. Everyone laughs a bit as Aru summarizes the discussion about sacrifices (Hameko says it must have been Gero-san, perhaps a Necali main) Machabo says that once a year in this league he … (his mike is not great, lots of plosives and I can’t make out what he’s saying) Aru says that he’ll do things like normal? Yes, that’s the case Machabo says. (I didn’t get much out of his side of the interview. Hameko says that the impression he has is that Machabo has won in these face-to-face machups with Itazan.) Machabo keeps true to his namesake and wins 2-0.

Mizuha Cody vs. Takeuchi John Cody. Takeuchi John says that he practiced with Nauman to defeat Momochi in the Cody mirror (aside: how the hell is Momochi so good – who is he playing with?) and felt that they really bonded over that shared goal of beating Momochi, so he’s really sad about facing him here. So he also wants to make Gyogun feel sad as well. In response, Mizuha says that this is a team battle strategy, so personally he – Mago breaks in “HEY! What are you talking about? Are you saying I’m the bad guy here?” Mizuha says oh no no no, – the whole team is laughing. Mizuha continues – it was recently Moke’s birthday, and he was thinking (here, Moke says “that’s so kind!” and Mago says “oh no, could he really mean!?”) he would win 20 SFL points for him (Moke and Mago are all like, oh my gosh! wow! that’s great! they look like they will fake cry in happiness!) Mago tells Moke it’s too soon to cry yet. (Also, Mizuha, Moke, Takeuchi John were all on the fighting game idol group the Unknown Heroes so they have a history together.) Takeuchi John made the Gyogun team sad, winning 3-0.

That means it’s a tie, so we go into a FT1 tiebreaker match. Takeuchi John is up for DNG, and Mizuha is up again for Gyogun. So we get a short run-back. Takeuchi John says that he thought he played well so he’s surprised that they put up Mizuha again, but he’s really strong in challenges, so he wants to make sure he doesn’t under-estimate him and will fight at full strength. Aru asks Mizuha if this is his application for revenge, Mizuha says he didn’t think it was that bad, and he lost on reads. If you play 4 times he’s sure he’ll win at least once. It will just be a 5 point present. Moke says that he knows Mizuha is trying really hard, and he’s cheering for him. Takeuchi John wins.

DNG gets the 20-25 win, so they get the final interview. They start with Nauman, who lost in the mirror. He’s unhappy about the personal loss, but he was able to bring out some things he practiced which was nice. He’s grateful to John for getting the team win. Itazan says that his sacrifices were completely ignored, and Masahiro got the win. Aru says he thinks that’s a bad player matchup, and Itazan initially denies it, but then says well when people keep saying that maybe it’s true. Now he feels a bit like they don’t get along well too. Aru apologizes. Itazan is happy that John won though so that he had a chance to speak at the end. Uryo says he really wanted to see that – John’s really strong. He felt really relaxed just watching, assured of victory, and feels like he doesn’t have anything he can say. He didn’t play this time, but will do his best next time when he plays.

Finally Aru turns to Takeuchi John saying he had a great win, and single-handedly brought the team to victory. He feels good, thought it was a good win, and really wants to get back to wins like this.

Before the break they have another commercial with Nosh (a frozen pre-packaged food service) so Aru and Hameko have some dinner. I hope Jeremy and Saint Cola are eating good. At ungodly hours.

23.3 Shinobism Gaming vs. Hiroshima TEAM iXA

Johnny G vs. Gunfight Alex. Gunfight says this is as expected after looking at CFN, and he’s had lots of practice with Yanai. He wants to show good play since he’s overcome his nervousness. Johnny says “Leave it to me”. And doesn’t look like he wants to continue the conversation so here we go. Gunfight wins 2-0.

Momochi Cody vs. Crusher Birdie. Crusher says he thought he’d face Momochi a few days ago after checking his activity, so he’s prepped for the Cody match. He also thinks this is the first time he’s faced Momochi in SFV in a tournament battle, so he’ll do his best. Momochi says he thinks they fought in Season 2, back in the Master and Apprentice Cup (man, that’s a long time ago!) and Crusher really busted up the apprentices. He holds a grudge from that (they were his apprentices) and wants to win. Momochi wins 2-0.

Fujimura Luke vs. Inaba Dictator. Inaba says that he’s faced Fujimura a lot in online tournaments, and lost, but today he’s going to break him. Fujimura says he has a good friend Obiheart (??) that plays Dictator and he practiced every day without anything to do with SFL to beat that guy as his daily quest. Aru asks if he’s really a good friend, and Fujimura says of course! He’s going to make use of that experience to win. Fujimura won 3-2, giving Shinobism the victory.

Aru starts the post-game interview with Johnny. Johnny said he hadn’t seen a set where he cheered as hard that last one. It was really important to get that last 20 points. As for his personal match, he didn’t play very well, and needs to practice harder so he can show us better matches. Momochi says Fujimura is a real entertainer, making his teammates get so worked up like that. Inaba played really well, and while he believed in Fujimura making a comeback, but in the end the margin of victory was razor thin, and their team was just going nuts at the end. It was great for the team though. Momochi also did well in his match, he played a lot with Shokamo-san (??) and practiced a lot. Also, ROF from Australia a very strong Birdie player was in Japan, and they all played a lot at Studio Sky and that was very useful. He thinks he played well and is very satisfied. (ROF getting the call-out!)

Yamaguchi says that last match with Fujimura was really good, and he was super nervous during that. He thought that last play was really good for Luke. Fujimura says he doesn’t think the match was good enough for them to ask him how he thought it went (since he was down before making the comeback). Aru asks him if he isn’t being too hard on himself. He’s happy he was able to show the strength of Luke and win in the end somehow. Inaba played really well, and he actually feels like he lost, and he doesn’t really know why he won. Momochi jumps in saying that final EX sand blaster (??) (two times for the win!) was great. Aru asks him about his “daily quest” and he says “it really came in handy – if I see you again I’ll play every day. Thank you!”

24 2022-11-29 JP SFL Section 12 Day 2

24.1 Warmup

Yamato and Hameko are on commentary today.

For Hameko’s Choice he walked through an example with Shinobism Gaming Fujimura vs. Inaba that went to a timeout and why/how that happened.

Predictions time. For Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Good 8 Squad, Nari-kun Akira may face Gachi-kun Rashid. If that happens, then it might be hard for Kawano since Daigo can fight either Kolin or Lucia well. Fuudo Mika might go for Dogura Dictator, and Daigo Guile might go up against Pugera Boxer if that comes up. Hameko thinks there might be another pattern though, where Gachi-kun is in the Anchor spot, in which case Nagoya OJA might not want to put Nari-kun to face him. Hameko says that SFL is a league of momentum, and it might be hard to put that much pressure on Nari-kun, so Daigo would face him in that case. Fuudo Poison would then match up with Pugera Boxer even though it is a tough matchup (but Fuudo has been doing well against him.) Akira Cammy would face Dogura Dictor, or maybe Nari-kun.

Saishunkan Sol Kuamamoto vs. v6 Plus FAV gaming. Hameko thinks it will be hard for sako Menat to play, since YHC-Mochi Dhalsim covers that well. Since YHC-Mochi lost in the mirror last time to Torimeshi Dhalsim, Nemo Gill might take that since his parry is useful in the match. Shuto Urien beat Bon-chan Luke in the previous JP World Warrior event so that might be the case. If Tokido is Anchor, Shuto might face him there though since he’s been playing well lately against Luke. Higuchi Guile will also likely take on one of the Lukes.

24.2 Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Good 8 Squad

Interesting, the line-up was according to pattern 2 that Hameko identified.

Fuudo Mika vs. Dogura Dictator. Dogura says this is an important match for them in the away position, he wants to set a positive tone with a win against Fuudo. He actually sounded really positive and happy when he said all that. Fuudo says “I don’t think many people have a high evaluation of Dogura, but I have a very high opinion of him and think he’s really strong.” I was hoping for this match, and I will win. And he did, 2-0.

Akira Cammy vs. Pugera Boxer. Pugera says that last time when they were the home team he faced Daigo and lost, and this time I want to make Akira’s Cammy … (I believe he said Ikasete – to let live – but that doesn’t make sense to me. I can think of one other thing it might mean, but I’d prefer to believe that isn’t the intent.) He’ll do his best. I don’t feel so bad because some other people mumbled they didn’t get it either. Akira says that Pugera and he are the same age, and usually get along together extremely well, so much so that they talk on discord about stuff, and as a player he really respects him, but he wants to crush him. Pugera won 2-1.

Daigo Guile vs. Gachi-kun Rashid. Gachi-kun says that he’s almost 100% for preparation against every Nagoya player’s characters, and with Daigo’s Guile he’ll put forward 1100%. Daigo says he feels like he hasn’t won much against Gachi-kun in tournament, but this is important for the team so he’s full of team spirit and will do his best. [He honestly didn’t sound very confident. Kind of funny – like he doesn’t know why his team wants him up there, but he’ll do it.] Daigo wins 3-1.

Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom gets the 30-10 win. First up is Fuudo, who says up until the end they were trying to figure out who should take the Anchor spot, but said that Daigo was very confident (his pre-match interview did not sound that way!) so Fuudo said he’d chase after the good matchup, and they got a lot of points from that. Akira said he’s feeling bad about losing, but he’s had a bad percentage against Good 8 Squad and in the end they won. Daigo says that was exhausting. Yamato asks what kind of prep he did, and Daigo said he just put all his effort into preparation. Yamato asks if he was satisfied with the match, and Daigo answers that he thinks he was able to execute on what he prepared for different situations if Gachi-kun did this he’d do that, etc. He also says luck was with him as well. It was a battle of spirit. Yamato asks Nari-kun for his comments. He says “Bravo, Bravo, Bravo!” Looks very elegant sitting up straight to do it.

Akira says this gets them to 290 points, they can see the playoffs, and they beat Good 8 Squad, he’ll do his best to improve so he can contribute as well.

24.3 Saishunkan Sol Kuamamoto vs. v6 Plus FAV gaming

Nemo Gil vs. Bon-chan Luke. Bon-chan says that Higuchi has been taking Luke matches, so he expected to face him, but right before this he thought there might be a change and prepped a lot for Gil. He thinks he’ll be fine, and he’ll play like he usually does. Nemo says he’s thoroughly studied the Gil Luke match and wants to clash with Bon-chan at full force. He’ll go hard to win any way he can. Bon-chan took it 2-0.

Higuchi Guile vs. sako Menat. sako says that since Bon-chan won the first match, he really wants to play this game in a relaxed manner, but he’s going to hard at it. Higuchi says that sako is the oldest pro gamer, so this is a battle between the youngest and oldest pro gamers, and interesting from that point. Since YHC-Mochi is taking a break today, he wants to win and make a contribution to his team (he does a Yoga-style pose.) Higuchi won 2-1.

Shuto Urien vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido says he is totally prepared for Luke and will win. Shuto says “wasn’t that a short interview?” Shuto has been looking forward to this match with Tokido, and he expected to play when he saw Tokido in the Anchor match. And while he thinks Tokido chose that position because he expects to beat Shuto, Shuto’s excited about the match. If he can beat Tokido he will be one step closer to being the Strongest Street Fighter, so he’ll put his all into beating Tokido. Shuto convincingly wins 3-0 giving Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto the 30-10 win.

The interview starts with Nemo, who says that once they learned YHC-Mochi would be absent today he thought they got the best order for themselves, and that is reflected in the score. Watching Shuto’s Urien though he just so emotionally moved he really feels like he’s got to work harder himself. (Higuchi tells him to ganbaru!) Higuchi says he’s happy that he won of course, but he’s almost happier for Shuto’s win, he couldn’t believe that it could go so well. Shuto said that Higuchi did a good job too. Since YHC-Mochi wasn’t able to be here today they were worried about what to do, and things had to be decided suddenly, but he played with the spirit of YHC-Mochi’s mountain hermit, and will do his best.

Shuto said that in the pre-interview he was talking things up, but actually he thought it was going to be a really tough match. He can hardly believe the result himself. He thought Tokido had a higher chance of winning, so he’s just shocked with his surprise and happiness. Yamato asks how he felt when he was up 2-0, and he responds he just doesn’t think about the game at all, and this year hasn’t been worried about the points, just focuses on the game. So he thinks about how Tokido was moving, what he was doing and how he should respond, and then the match was over.

Finally, they as Nemo for his final thoughts. He says that these two young players (Shuto, Higuchi) are just so strong, he’s really shocked. He says something about first place and then Shuto and Higuchi start talking over him about aiming for first place. Nemo says “Next we’ll totally destroy that mad crazy spinning jerk and do our best!”

25 2022-12-02 JP SFL Section 13 Day 1

25.1 Warmup

On commentary today we have Yamato and Hameko.

Today’s Hameko’s Choice is the “Road to the Playoffs”. Hameko explains that the number of games won is important (it factors into tiebreaking) but if a team wins with an overtime match it is possible for them to be negative on the battle points. Then they look at points and battle points, and game out some scenarios. There is a case where if Good8Squad gets 0 points in the next 2 rounds, you could possibly end up with three teams tied at 330 (Good 8 Squad, Shnobism, Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom) and 6th place (Shinobism would advance.)

For Komyufa Detonation Gaming to advance, they would have to get 40 points in the next two sections, and if FAV gets 0 points, and Gyogun gets 10, DNG could get in on battle points (in an unlikely scenario.) In another scenario FAV and Gyogun could end up tied for the last playoff spot (6th place). Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom can’t rest easy, since Hameko finds a scenario where they fall to 6th place. Team iXA is out of the playoff run.

This leads to a new segment, Yamato’s Choice. Even though Team iXA is out of the playoffs, they are in 1st place in another ranking: the battle costume sales for individual sales. Huh, that’s cool. I bought iXA and DNG. Or the pass for all of them. I forget.

Predictions are up next. For Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Hiroshima Team iXA, Nagoya OJA got 40 points last time. Hameko expects Fuudo Mika to face Inaba Dictator, or Crusher Birdei with a preference for Inaba if he is again the Anchor. Daigo will likely take on Storm Kubo with good matchups against Alex and Abigail. Akira Cammy will likely face Gunfight Alex. If Nari-kun plays, he would probably face Crusher Birdie.

Good 8 Squad vs. Gyogun. Dogura Dictator would probably face Mizuha Cody, even though Momochi Cody beat him. Pugera Boxer would face Mago Luke. Machabo Dictator might show up, and maybe Gachi-kun Rashid would face that. Dogura Dictator might face Moke Rashid, it’s an interesting match because both teams have good practice for that one.

25.2 Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Hiroshima Team iXA

Akira Cammy vs. Gunfight Alex. Gunfight says this is what he expected, and he’s prepared thanks to Orgun-san and Spa (I might have those names wrong). He will do his best to give us a good fight. Akira says he’s been playing for two weeks with Kichi-pa and Don-pachi, and again at least in the game he wants to beat Gunfight. (In the past he’s said that he can’t compare to Gunfight – tri-lingual, good looking, smart, etc. etc., and stressed that at least he can win in the game.) Gunfight is certainly a cool dude, and I’m sure Akira is too, but I’ve got to cheer for Gunfight in this one. Akira wins 2-1.

Fuudo Mika vs. Inaba Dictator. Inaba says he’s a bit worried because Dogura was just beat the other day, but he thinks he can beat Fuudo. Fuudo says that since he beat Dogura in what he thought was a nice way last time, now he’s a concerned. So he’s trying to think that he stole it, because the way Mika plays is very unpredictable and has high variance (this is how I’m reading into 荒れる – stormy). And that’s the one point he’s worried about. Fuudo won 2-0.

Daigo Guile vs. Storm Kubo Abigail. Storm Kubo said he didn’t expect to face Daigo, and instead thought it would be Dogura. There’s only a few days left though, and today especially he will do his best. Daigo says if he wins, then his team will advance to the playoffs, so it’s a very important match. However, Storm Kubo can use a lot of characters, so he had to split his time to prep for all of that, which worries him a bit. He did what he could though, and he wants to win. Daigo won 3-2.

Nagoya got the 40 points they were shooting for, and the final interview. Yamato asks Akira about his impressions, and he said it was probably the match he was most nervous about this year. Especially losing the first match in 40 seconds, he couldn’t look his teammates in the eye after that. He’s grateful to Kichi-pa and Don-pachi. Fuudo says he thought he played well in his win, but that last match really had him excited about whether Daigo would win or not. There’s just one more day left, and he wants to win. Daigo says he was nervous for the first time in a while. His team told him he was a bit stiff, and needed to approach more. In the end the result was good. Nari-kun says “hey, can I do it?” Yamato says go ahead. Nari-kun says he’s say it quietly, but he shouts “BRAVO“!

Looking forward Akira says it has been a long time, but they will win the last one to get into the playoffs and do their best.

Before the break they talk about Hiroshima Team iXA’s t-shirts, and I like that they are doing those a lot with their own characters that they had drawn up. Not sure why other teams aren’t doing more merchandising. They talk about the Beta (I applied, hope I get in this time) and the playoff tickets.

25.3 Good 8 Squad vs. Gyogun

Kawano Kolin vs. Luke Mago. Mago said he thought it would be either Pugera or Kawano, and Kawano showed up. Mago thinks he’s got the advantage in the character matchup, but he thinks Kawano is coming after him because Kawano thinks he can win. Certainly he hasn’t won when the meet in tournaments much, but this time he’ll win! Kawano says something that I can’t quite make out – it sounds like he’s quoting something but I couldn’t find anything. Something like he thinks he can win but I really think I can do and I’m going crazy over it. Maybe. Mago won 2-0.

Dogura Dictator vs. Mizuha Cody. Mizuha says “What a great question!” (Yamato had asked him how he feels about the upcoming match.) He says that he came prepared to face Gachi-kun in the overtime match, but Gachi-kun decided he should face Dogura, so he took off his glasses and said “You’ll do just fine too.” Hameko tells Dogura that Mizuha was waiting for Gachi-kun, but said that Dogura would do just fine too. Dogura says it sounds like Mizuha is fine with that. He and Gachi-kun were debating up until the end which of them should go up, and he’ll win with these mis-matched expectations. Dogura wins 2-1.

Pugera Boxer vs. Machabo Dictator. Machabo says he practiced the Boxer matchup a massive amount, last time he wasn’t able to win vs. Dictator, but this time he will win and make a contribution to the team. Pugera says since the start of SFL, he’s been improving bit by bit, and has really improved up to today. Regarding Machabo, he ran long FT10 sets domestically (BOUNTY MASAHIRO, Machabo won 6 of 8 of the events, Pugera won his 6-10) he won. So he’ll do his best. Pugera wins 3-0.

Good 8 Squad gets the 30-10 win, so they have the final interview. They start with Kawano, who says he’s now lost 4 times in a row, and he hasn’t ever had that experience in the league or other tournaments. After his 3rd consecutive loss, he started practicing 2x as long, but even with that he couldn’t win, so he really needs to figure out what he needs to do to win. Dogura is next, he says it went really poorly at first and he thought he might lose, but at some point he really started to calm down. He started to think that Mizuha really overreached, and his teammates said Mizuha was going on the defensive so once he started to play a bit more defensively he was able to get the come from behind win. He also says that while Kawano said he hasn’t lost 4 in a row before, in a previous CPT Dogura did just that. Kawano chimes in “4 years ago, right?” Lots of laughs. Pugera is rocking back and forth, making the noise of dodging punches. He said he expected Dictator, and he really wants to go back and look at how Machabo was able to train up a new character over the course of SFL enough that he could use him here. He was able to win by playing lots of Dogura and other Dictators (said in a strange way.)

Finally they ask Gachi-kun for his thoughts. Since the team had lost twice consecutively they really had to win here. They will definitely win next time against Saishunkan.

26 2022-12-06 JP SFL Section 13 Day 2

26.1 Warmup

Aru and Hameko are on commentary. They talk about the match between Shuto Urien and Tokido Luke that Shuto won 3-0 and walk through some of those plays.

Predictions for Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto. A bit of amusing banter about Itazan (that madly whirling bastard as Nemo called him) and the True Naoki. Takeuchi John Cody or Uryo Rose might target Higuchi Guile, which makes Hameko think Shuto might be in the Anchor position. Itazan G might face him there. He might also want to go after YHC-Mochi Dhalsim though. Nauman Luke might face Nemo Falke.

For v6 Plus FAV gaming vs. Shinobism Gaming, Hameko expects Momochi Cody to be the Anchor, and Torimeshi Dhalsim might go after him (again – he lost the previous time he tried that). Tokido or Bon-chan Luke might go after Fujimura or Yamaguchi Luke, but sako’s Menat might go after them too.

26.2 Komyufa DetonatioN Gaming vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto

Uryo Rose vs. YHC-Mochi. YHC-Mochi says that last time he lost to Uryo’s Rose, but things are different now and he wants to show us that difference (by doing his best.) Uryo says he wasn’t thinking of playing the way that he did last time anyway, and he also spent time looking into the Dhalsim matchup. He’ll ganbaru as well. Torimeshi won 2-1.

Itazan G vs. Shuto Urien. Shuto says that G is a matchup where he’s likely to smile, and if Itazan smiles like that and his team leader sees it, his team leader makes a disgusted face. So he will end things before Itazan gets even a single chance to smile. Aru chimes in “A no-smile finish?” That’s right, please watch Itazan’s feed Shuto says. Aru prompts Itazan by saying that Shuto won’t let him show his smile even once, to which Itazan laughs a bit. He says that he really thinks Shuto has improved a lot lately, so he put a lot of practice into the Urien match, and while there are lots of other Urien players, he’s come to beat the best one (一刀流? Maybe that’s what he means, also very likely I misheard). Hameko talks a bit about “other Uriens?” It was a close one, but Shuto won 2-1.

Takuechi John Cody vs. Higuchi Guile. Higuchi says they already got 20 points so they are in the playoffs, and the rest is setting them up for good position so there 20 points are important. He’ll play loose and aim for the points. Takeuchi John says he’s going to win and asks for Nemo to show up in the overtime session. He started off saying “Why isn’t Nemo playing?” Higuchi wins 3-1, getting the full 40 points for Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto.

They start with YHC-Mochi, who says he played without thinking too much and just going by his body’s muscle memory. Whether that’s good or not he’s not sure, but it worked out well. Shuto asks if Itazan smiled. Aru and Hameko say that he was grinning in the first match but not after that. Shuto well, that’s good. Aru said he made quite the face after the game, and Shuto says he’ll check it out later. Nemo says he really did not expect things to turn out this well. His team is really strong. Aru asks if the order was tough to decide, and Nemo says that while he might have let some people down, but if John had won – he thinks maybe there is trouble on John’s team, does he want to talk about it with Nemo?

Turning to Higuchi Aru says that the first match was really played at John’s pace, but he made a great adjustment and won after that. The medium kick to overhead was working, and in fighting games being able to instantly read the situation is super important. He thought he played a good match. Aru asks about getting 40 points as the away team, and he said he faced it as prep for the playoffs, he really wants to make it to the Grand Finals and will do his best.

Hameko comments that with these points, they are in first place (with the tie-breaker over Good 8 Squad).

26.3 v6 Plus FAV gaming vs. Shinobism Gaming

It looks like sako is not available today because he’s not feeling well. So they ask the “sub-leader” who will go up, and there is an awkward silence. Bon-chan calls him the “sub” and he speaks up finally.

Torimeshi Dhalsim vs. Fujimura Luke. Fujimura expected Torimeshi or sako, so he’s done his homework. He wants to set the pace with a win in the first match. Torimeshi says he’s got great practice for Luke with Bon-chan and Tokido, and he started to get worried because they’re so good (implication here: he’s losing!) He’ll do his best. Torimeshi wins 2-1.

Bon-chan Sagat vs. Yamaguchi Luke. Yamaguchi says that personally he would have preferred Luke to Sagat, but he thinks he can win if he tries hard enough (and he somehow won last time). Bon-chan says last time he thought he would have a crushing victory, but ended in complete defeat, so he’s really built up some stress over that. Aru says “so you’re at max gauge now?” And he says he is. So he’s going to SHOW US Sagat, it’s TIME FOR AN EXECUTION! Man, Bon-chan is always good for an amusing interview. Bon-chan wins 2-0.

Tokido Luke vs. Momochi Cody. Momochi says their team (FAV I think) is confronted with a crisis. He’s been entrusted to the Anchor spot for all their away games (his teammates believe in him) so he wants to live up to that trust and get 25 points. Tokido says that last time they lost 0-40, and he wants to return the favor. Tokido wins 3-1.

Torimeshi starts the interview says it was a tough fight the whole time. If it wasn’t for Tokido and Bon-chan he never would have won. Aru says he didn’t see Torimeshi smile even once, and that stuck with him. Torimeshi says normally he talks while he plays, but the Luke match is super rough and he doesn’t have anything to spare. Aru says that The Tiger finally came out, and Bon-chan says I told you I was going to have an execution! Since their leader isn’t here he doesn’t want the team to feel down, and thinks sako-san is really relieved right now. Aru says 40-0 is really important at this timing. Bon-chan says they’re just dishing it back! It happened to them first. This year is also tough though. Finally they talk to Tokido and Aru says it was a hard fought match. Tokido says that his opponent is his opponent as always, but lately he’s begun to think that Luke has the advantage against Cody and he enjoys it. He didn’t play Momochi though, but there were lots of people he could play. Based on that he thought he could beat Momochi, and his practice really contributed to that as well as good luck. He says that they are aiming to get above top 3 so that is their goal.

27 2022-12-09 JP SFL Section 14 Day 1

27.1 Warmup

Yamato and Hameko are on commentary today. For Hameko’s Choice they look at some statistics from this year’s league. Points by player (Higuchi, Mommochi, Fuudo lead the pack). Then win percentage (Dogura, Daigo, Higuchi). Then split it out by home / away. Anti-air percentage ranking (Mago, Nari-kun, Akira). The bottom two on that list (Dogura, Inaba) both use Dictator. Invincible reversal rankings with a weight between success percentage and attempts (Machabo, Higuchi, Daigo). Throw break rankings (Nari-kun, Momochi, Kawano). EX Gauge usage ranking (broken out to EX / CA.) V-gauge usage ranking and usage (VS, VT, VR). Then stats by character, starting with Luke usage (Tokido gets the most points with him, then Mago, Yamaguchi / Bon-chan / Fujimura). Cody (Momochi, Takeuchi John, Mizuha) – Momochi is really running away with this with 95 more points than second place. Dictator (Dogura, Machabo, Inaba). Higuchi is leading Daigo by 20 points for Guile, the other stats they look at are very similar across the two though.

Time for predictions. For Good 8 Squad vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto, Hameko expects either Gachi-kun or Pugera to take on YHC-Mochi. Pugera Boxer is more likely to face Higuchi if he plays though, and Gachi-kun Rashid Shuto Urien. Dogura Dictator might take on Nemo.

For Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. v6 Plus FAV Gaming Alex might face either of the two Lukes. Torimeshi Dhalsim is good against Alex, so he might play. If Bon-chan plays Sagat Inaba Dictator is likely to attack him, and Crusher Birdie might target Tokido. Storm Kubo might face sako Menat.

That said, I’m watching this the day after it happened, and I saw that Akiki tweeted that sako still had a fever, and was just pretending to be healthy so Hiroshima Team iXA would have to worry about him being in their lineup. So I doubt if he actually played.

27.2 Good 8 Squad vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto

Pugera Boxer vs. Higuchi Guile. Higuchi says this is their last match, it’s really important. Even if they get 40 points, they won’t overtake 1st place, but he wants to win here and pass it off to the middle and anchor players. Pugera also says it’s the last one, and he’s been preparing a lot every day up until now for the playoffs, and now finally that is within reach. Pugera wins 2-0.

Gachi-kun Rashid vs. YHC-Mochi Dhalsim. YHC-Mochi says he knows it’s a pretty tough match-up, but that doesn’t mean he has no chance. He’s got a strong heart, and will win. Gachi-kun says he’s practiced a lot with his team through to today, and will beat YHC-Mochi.

Kawano Kolin vs. Shuto Urien. Shuto says if they win this that should guarantee them at least top 3 seeding, so it’s really important. He views Kawano as his rival since they started at the same time, and really thinks this will be a fierce battle. He’s going to win and let Kawano know he’s the survivor. Kawano says he’s going to go all out. Shuto wins 3-2.

For the overtime match, Nemo calls on “Shuto-san” then corrects himself to “Shuto-sama”. Good 8 Squad puts up Kawano Kolin. Shuto says he will win. Kawano says he has some more stuff that he hasn’t shown us yet, and will do his best. Shuto wins the overtime match, getting Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto the 25-20 win from the Away position.

They start the interviews with Higuchi, who says he played a bit stiff, and was nervous but in the league this year he feels like he’s won. In the end Shuto won, and got them at least 2nd or 3rd seeding. He’ll continue to try his best so he can contribute to the team. YHC-Mochi says his match with Gachi-kun he doesn’t have a big impression coming out of it – usually he feels like he wins half the time. He’s unhappy he lost, but looking forward he’ll look for other strategies since they may face each other again. Since they got 2nd or 3rd in the playoffs he’ll keep looking for tactics to use.

Turning to Shuto, he apologizes for the lag in the 4th match, there was something going on with his computer. He’d like to apologize to Kawano for that. He won in the overtime match and won overall, and will practice more for the Grand Final. Nemo says he’s lucky to have these team members; last year he wasn’t even able to make it to the playoffs. Please continue to support Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto!

Looks like Capcom has a collaboration with Epos for a credit card? No yearly fee? Hm, I’m tempted, but I’ve got enough cards already. More ads for Nosh frozen dinner service, and you can get a little clear file with SFL branding. Looks like Hameko and Yamato get some dinner as well. They also announce the sales date for SF6 – I don’t know if that would have been before the Game Awards?

27.3 Hiroshima TEAM iXA vs. v6 Plus FAV Gaming

sako sits out for v6 Plus FAV Gaming – he actually was quite sick and was just there to make Hiroshima Team iXA think about him, and not give away their order. Akiki tweeted about that the next day after the matches. He’s apparently doing better, and resting now (a day later). Hope he recovers soon, but look at the tactics that come into play with this weekly league!

Inaba Dictator vs. Bon-chan Luke. Bon-chan says something about getting 40 points. Inaba says he’s been playing the Luke matches for days on end, and has a strategy against him. He also says that he was shocked that not only did they have anti-air stats, but he was last in it (Hameko laughs) he’ll do his best. As the cut away from the interview, Yamato says they weren’t trying to put pressure on anyone. Hameko also comments on how Bon-chan’s noise canceling cut in and they couldn’t make out what he was saying (whew, not just me!) Inaba won 2-1.

Gunfight Alex vs. Torimeshi Dhalsim. Storm Kubo actually said Alex, Gunfight, which got a laugh out of people. Torimeshi says that he hasn’t played the Alex matchup much, but yesterday he played a lot with Kichi-pa-san and Suzuya-san, and got used to the matchup. He felt that since the Shinobism match his body got lighter and he’s been feeling good, so he has a good feeling about this match and will show us the Sansara. Gunfight says he’s prepared for the Dhalsim matchup, and will continue the win from Inaba. (Then he and Storm Kubo try to do a virtual handshake thing but some of it gets green-screened out.) Gunfight won 2-0.

Crusher Birdie vs. Tokido Luke. Tokido says he expected Crusher, and has prepared for Birdie, and thinks he can show us some high quality play. Please watch. Crusher says that he’s played this match a lot, and thinks Birdie can handle the neutral game, but Luke has high return on his hits. He’ll try to look for gaps and opportunities and push forward for the win. He’ll do his best. Tokido wins in a close 3-2.

That means there will be an overtime match. FAV puts up Tokido Luke. Storm Kubo really seems in a bind as to what to do – Gunfight says they should do rock paper scissors to decide. In the end he picks himself, Storm Kubo Abigail. Tokido verifies that it’s Storm Kubo’s Abigail, and says that’s ok, he’ll take care of it in the FT1. Storm Kubo makes quite the face and apologizes for the two weeks that Crusher’s been putting into the match, but in the end he wants to play too, will win. Tokido wins.

That means FAV gaming gets the final interview with the 25-20 win. They start with Bon-chan, who says they really needed at least 30 points, but he never thought it would turn out like this. He’s got to reflect on the loss. It’s unfortunate. (He’s doing all the apologizing head motions.) Torimeshi said he played a lot, and thinking back he wasn’t on the offensive enough, and was waiting way too much. He was a bit panicked, and Gunfight really played well. We have the playoffs though, so he’ll continue to train (and rent out training partners). Tokido says he thought Crusher could have gotten the win there, he had a lot of time to prepare, and up until the very end either one of them could have won. That’s a fun match-up.

They ask sako what he thought, and he says that from last week he’s had Corona, and has been sleeping the whole time. He’s sorry for causing trouble for his teammates. Looking forward to the playoffs, he’s going to practice a lot, and please look forward to it. Hameko comments that sako’s voice sounds sick still (it does.) Hameko also praises for Team iXA.

28 2022-12-13 JP SFL Section 14 Day 2

28.1 Warmup

Today we have Aru and Hameko, the dependable duo, back on commentary. Hameko’s choice is the “Road to the Playoffs the final battle!” or something like that. For Shinobism to make it to the playoffs they need to get at least 10 points (otherwise, possibly Gyogun could pass them.) If they get 40 points and Nagoya OJA Body Star Mildom gets 3, they can move up to 3rd place. Gyogun needs 40 points and Shinobism needs 0 points for them to make the playoffs.

Aru gets a “breaking news” note about DNG getting 1st place in some ranking – and it’s the individual costume sales ranking.

For the predictions, Hameko thinks that if Takeuchi John is the Anchor, Momochi would face him since he won last time. Yamaguchi Luke would face Nauman Luke since he won the match previously, and Itazan would probably be faced by Fujimura Luke. Hameko thinks it would be interesting if Johnny G faces Takeuchi John Cody, but that is unlikely. If Uryo Rose plays, who would face him would be key.

For Gyogun vs. Nagoya OJA Body Stars Mildom, Hameko expects Machabo to face Fuudo both with their multitude of characters. Mizuha Cody would likely face Umehara Guile, and Mago would face Akira Cammy or Nari-kun Akira. Moke Rashid might face Daigo Guile.

28.2 Shinobism vs. DetonatioN Gaming

Yamaguchi Luke vs. Nauman Luke. Nauman said that Yamaguchi is super good at the mirror match, and he expected to face him, but he’s practiced to beat him and needs to do that today. He also says that there is a rumor that if he’s able to beat Yamaguchi he’s heard that there’s a Momochi-san even stronger than Momochi inside of Yamaguchi, and if he beats him it will do real damage to Momochi. Aru prompts Yamaguchi saying that Nauman plans to damage both him and Momochi, he says that when they started playing 1:1, he first ran into Nauman’s Luke, and now he’s going to face Nauman’s Luke as the last match too. He’s lost 3 times in a row though, so wants to win here, get 10 points, and clinch their berth in the playoffs. He didn’t though, Nauman won 2-0.

Fujimura Luke vs. Itazan G. Aru starts by saying that Nauman got them 10 points. Itazan says this is the last dance, and since Nauman moved them forward, he’d like to take up that baton, and get to the next base (mixing metaphors with 進塁 and just 塁 as far as I can tell). Aru says that with 10 points they can clinch their playoff berth, to which Fujimura replies that if they get 30 points they have a chance to move up in the rankings for better seeding position. He really wants to win, and has prepared to do just that. Itazan wins 2-1.

Momochi Cody vs. Takeuchi John Cody. John says he has a lot of confidence in this match, and the fate of Itazan and Nauman rests in his hands, he wants to raise up Gyogun’s hopes of making it into the playoffs. Itazan and Nauman are laughing in the background. Momochi says last time they lost 0-40 to FAV, but this is the final game, and as a team he doesn’t want them to lose, he’s going to win. And he does, Momochi wins 3-1.

That leads to a FT1 tiebreaker. DNG puts up Uryo Rose – one of the first times we have seen all four players on a team play – and Shinobism puts up Yamaguchi (who I guess practiced for the match – I was kind of hoping for Johnny G.) Uryo says he’s happy that it’s his turn to shine, it came down to the very end, and will do his best to win. Yamaguchi says he’s lost 4 in a row now, but he wants to send them into the playoffs on a positive note. The match he practiced the most was for Rose, so he wants to show us what he can do. Yamaguchi wins 1-0.

Shinobism makes it into the playoffs, and gets the final interview. Aru congratulates them on their win. He starts with Yamaguchi, asking him about the overtime win. He says that he really wanted to win the first match, but he’s grateful he had the chance to win in the final match, and it’s a much better feeling to win that final FT1 than to finish the day on a loss. He’ll do his best in the playoffs. Fujimura says he prepared a lot and was confident but Itazan was just too strong and he lost. He wanted to be the one to finish Gyogun off, and that’s what he feels the worst about, that he wasn’t able to crush Gyogun. His teammates are really strong and he’s super happy for that. Johnny says he wanted to play in the overtime, but he’s not feeling well right now, so he asked Yamaguchi to do it. Yama closed things out really well though moving into the playoffs.

Momochi says he’s happy that he was able to save the team, and this was the same as the situation with FAV where if he won they could move up in the rankings. He lost that time, and in this case if he lost their playoff hopes would be over so he feels like he’s really got to step up his game too. His teammates all played their roles really well, and they got this far because of their team, even if they did just barely make it in, they are in.

28.3 Gyogun vs. Nagoya OJA Body Stars Mildom

Mago says there are lots of things he wants to talk about, but first up is Machabo Necali vs. Akira Cammy. Akira says this is a bit unexpected, but it’s rare to get a chance to play against Machabo so, and he’s lost to him before, so he wants to win to end things well. Machabo says he forgot what he was going to say. It won’t change their position, but he just straight up doesn’t like losing so he’ll go to win. Machabo wins 2-0.

Mago says that Macho’s doing great, and they are going to blame everything on Momochi.

Moke Rashid vs. Daigo Guile. Daigo says that wasn’t what he expected. He’ll do his best. Aru says that he has faced Moke in the past, and Daigo says, right, that’s why I didn’t expect it. Moke says he’s had a lot of practice in the Guile matchup, and he expects to bury him. Then Mago asks him “can you do it? can you do it?” and he responds with something that is definitely a reference to some anime or manga that I don’t know: “Umehara will die!” Daigo wins 2-1.

Mago Luke vs. Fuudo Poison. Mago of course, talks it up, the final battle, “It’s going to be me, Mago Luke” in a strange voice. Fuudo says that he expected Mago, but he prepared so that he could fight everyone on the whole team. Mago says he’s the one that has to close things out. He’s won a lot against Fuudo, and likes playing against him. It’s all been left up to him, so he’ll do it. Fuudo wins 3-1.

Nagoya OJA Body Stars got 30 points, and the win so they get the final interview. Akira laughs that he has never been able to beat Machabo, but Daigo and Fuudo won, so they were able to get to seeding position 2. He’ll do his best so that he is able to win. Daigo says that they have his name as Nemo, which production quickly changes. Daigo said he didn’t think Moke Rashid would face him since he beat Gachi-kun Rashid previously, he was thinking about Cody. He got a bit worried when he lost the first game, so he went back to player select and asked himself whether he had forgotten something. He felt like he forgot something, and his teammates told him <couldn’t make it out – you used to win more with 阪卒?) and I’m glad they told me that. Aru says that they are in 2nd place in the seeding now, and Daigo says that is unexpected. He thought that looking at the teams expecting to get to 2nd place would be too high hopes. He thinks they really worked hard to get there. Daigo has the highest win rate percentage. He thanks them for that info. He feels like Fuudo performed very well at the start, and he felt like he needed to start contributing too or it wouldn’t be possible for them to do well. Fuudo’s level was just so high they all had to chase after him.

They turn to Nari-kun who didn’t play, and he seems really down talking about how he didn’t win any matches (Aru encourages him saying the playoffs are still coming) he’ll do his best to make sure he can win in the playoffs. He’ll also be at the Caravan event on the weekend.

Fuudo says it’s tough to win against Gyogun, but they were really motivated. He was really looking forward to being called out by Mago. Aru says that Fuudo was really impactful in the SFL, he says that he did lose in the middle a bunch, but is happy they are in 2nd place. He really wants to make it to the Grand Finals.

29 Playoff seeding

Match 1 is Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom vs. Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto. The winner advances to the Grand Finals playoff spot. The loser goes to round 2 of the playoffs.
Match 2 is v6 Plus FAV gaming vs. Shinobism, the loser is out, the winner advances to round 2. The winner of round 2 advances to the Grand Finals playoff spot against the winner of Match 1. The winner of that faces Good 8 Squad in the true Grand Finals.

30 Comments from team captains in the playoffs

Momochi is up first for Shinobism Gaming. (On a side-note, I’m curious where he did this from, since he did go to Akihabara that night after playing in the first match. He very well could be at the Shinobism Live Viewing venue at this point – but he would not have had time to return to either his home or Studio Sky.) He says that last year they were in the playoffs as well, and their young players Higuchi and Ohtani were in a tough position. This time Yamaguchi and Johnny helped the team, though they stalled a bit in the latter half of the season. Fujimura really helped them out then. This is a really tough league, and that just hammered the point home. He thought they might be able to move up in the rankings, but they just barely made it in. Our veteran players and young players will reflect on this experience looking forward to the challenge of the playoffs. Aru asks if there is room to grow still – Momochi with his win today, and Yamaguchi with a win in the overtime session. He says that each person on the team has their own role, what they have to do now is deliver results and do their best, aiming for the win.

sako for v6 Plus FAV Gaming Rohto-Z! They had tough matches at the start of the season, but Tokido and Bon-chan started to get into shape and the team started to relax more and win. Aru asks if they think they have a mark on their back from winning last year. He thinks so, and the skill level is very high, it would be hard for them to practice as much as they did last year, so they will try new things.

Nemo for 3rd place Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto. This year Shuto and Higuchi joined the team, Higuchi really contributed a lot, and in the second half Shuto was very strong. They really felt like a team, and he can make orders that depend on them. Aru says he feels like they won in every match they lost in the first half, and does he think that will benefit them in the playoffs? Nemo is quick to say that they don’t know that yet. They practice together as a team, and things are good, so they want to go into the playoffs with that attitude.

Akira for 2nd place Nagoya OJA BODY STAR Mildom. He last year they were in 6th place, and he cried like a baby, but this year he’s super happy. He can’t just sit there and be happy though, a lot depended on the work of Daigo and Fuudo, and he and Nari-kun both need to work hard as well. Aru says their Caravan is coming up and they are in a good position for that. Akira is excited to smile in front of everyone, and thank their supporters.

Gachi-kun for Good 8 Squad sitting pretty in 1st place. He says that it wasn’t like last year where there was jockeying for position going on until the very last minute. Aru asks about their team composition which doesn’t have a Luke or Cody, but they still got to 1st place. He says that their team of course thinks about those two characters a lot, and they have answers for those characters. Aru says that they had a tough time losing in the Grand Finals last year. Gachi-kun says that he thought they had a good order against FAV last year, but they lost. They will prepare for all the teams in the playoffs to make sure they are ready for anything, and win.

31 Open discussion with team captains

Aru then said that they would like to have some open cross talk with the captains of the teams. Hameko says that in the last playoffs the away teams got more points on average than the home team. So he wants to hear what the teams think about seeding and the team matchup. First up is Momochi, what does he think about the away matchup with FAV?

Momochi says that based on today’s play, they fell from 3rd place to 6th place, and of course they would prefer 3rd place. But between 4th and 5th place, it doesn’t really matter. It depends on the teams, last times the away teams won more, he feels like there isn’t much difference between home and away.

Hameko says that FAV won more points in the home position, and sako replies you have a bit of an advantage so you can plan a bit more. Nemo says the lost in the away slot to Nagoya and they’ve climbed into position to face them again and it isn’t the best matchup for them. But there is plenty of time, so they will prepare and overcome the away disadvantage and win. Hameko asks Akira about being on the Home side (against Saishunkan Sol Kumamoto) and he says it’s not like a rule that home wins and away loses, he’s super happy they have 2nd place, and they are able to prepare for the other team’s characters, and having that 2nd place is very important.

They open the floor for general questions, but nobody jumps in with anything to ask. So Aru asks them once more for their thoughts and words for fans going into the playoffs.

Momochi starts off and says that he is streaming from a different location than normal – a public viewing session where fans came to watch. (I thought so! Man, I should have stuck around to see Momochi live.) He says he expects to see fans at the Grand Final again, and please support them there! Last year they lost, and couldn’t make it there, but this year they will be at the Grand Finals. Aru says that the playoffs are offline. Hamko talks about how in fighting games we traditionally have played in front of each other, and that’s part of the enjoyment.

sako says last year FAV won, and wants to continue that. First up is Shinobism, and they are home, so they want to win that and face their next unknown opponent with clear preparation.

Nemo says Saishunkan was able to make it this far due to the support of their fans. They also had a chance to play Nagoya OJA BODY STARS Mildom offline once and the fan support there was really great, so he wants to advance to the Grand Finals with the support of their fans.

Akira for Nagoya OJA BODY STARS says last year the comments from fans on twitter and other places were important for them getting as far as they have, and he really wants to thank fans for their support. On a personal note, he started playing SFV because he saw strong players in video and thought that he wanted to play against them, and being able to come to this large stage and play with these famous players, getting to the Grand Finals would realize the dream for him again.

Gachi-kun for Good 8 Squad says different from last year, this year they have Tachikawa as an exclusive team Sparring Partner (I tweeted about this – he was signed to Good 8 Squad for that, and was instrumental in them developing their Kawano Lucia anti-Poison strategy, he also plays Dictator and Dhalsim) and he gives them lots of advice, and we’ll bring him to the Grand Finals. We don’t have any holes. We’ll win the Grand Finals and the World.

They close with an overview of the Playoffs schedule. The first team to get 50 points win, so you have at least one turn where home and away changes. Playoffs start Dec. 29th, and will be offline, with tickets sold through Zaiko.io (5000 JPY for playoffs and grand finals together, or just 3000 JPY for the playoffs.) There’s also a pre-game show with Nanai andn No-Motion starting at 12:30 on the 29th. The Grand Finals are are January 21st, it will be offline with spectators, tickets are 5000 JPY or 6000 JPY, but they are already done selling (oops, I missed it.) They will open up sales again later though on Jan. 10th so maybe I can get tickets.



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3 responses to “2022 Summer / Fall SFL: Pro-JP”

  1. Anonymous Avatar

    Thank you as always!

  2. Anonymous Avatar

    Pugera is often quoting other games or JP internet memes during his interviews. He quoted FFX (or was it FFXI?), KOF Kyo, Melty Blood during CPT, etc. It’s really hard to understand or translate him, because it takes some time to get the references. Thanks for the translations!

  3. Hassun Avatar

    Gracias, Mr fugutabetai!

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