You had to be there

This clip is infamous in the gaming niche that is the fighting game community. In a nutshell, two combatants in the loser’s bracket, one of which has been annoying players with a consistently-defensive playing style, and the other one down on their luck and staring right into the jaws of defeat. The cautious one, Justin Wong, throws out a “Super Art” move (these deal a lot of damage); every hit of which is knocked aside by fellow loser Daigo Umehara with precision timing using a high-skill technique known as ‘parrying’ (which requires hitting forward; the opposite of blocking an attack; mere frames before an attack is to hit — and this is to be done repeatedly for multi-hit attacks), launching into a combination attack that decides the fight. In front of probably hundreds of people, cheering for The Other Guy™.

Well, since my partner and I finally decided to take the plunge and put our XBox 360 online, I acquired Street Fighter III: Online Edition, which has as a parrying challenge the infamous Evo Moment #37.

Long story cut short, I did it.
Long story cut short, I did it.

This is actually one of my favourite moments in competitive gaming, despite probably being one of the best-known. It’s a wonderful show of grace under pressure, expert execution and good old-fashioned showboating; all of which are pretty much the task is included (and named thus, as “Evo Moment #37”) in this latest version of the game, as a celebration of its impact. And although I wasn’t in a tournament setting versus a more popular player with a huge crowd behind me, executing this (after many retries, I admit) and feeling that adrenaline rush was an amazing feeling, and a profound reminder of why I love videogames as a form.

It doesn’t sound exciting, I know, beating a challenge mode in the single-player portion of an online game. I guess you had to be there.


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