CouchWarriors AUSFGC Primer #1: Dragon Ball FighterZ

Ever get so emotional in a match you felt like powering up? Hype is the sign of a great fighting game, and few games can get players on their feet – and screaming – like Dragon Ball FighterZ

2018 was a huge year for the game culminating in the Dragon Ball FighterZ Saga event at CouchWarriors Crossup. Before the World Finals at the end of January, lets take a look at what the game is all about, then learn about the top players, and how to get into the local scene.

Building on the winning gameplay formula of “VS” games, Dragon Ball FighterZ (DBFZ) features lengthy juggle combos, high-speed aerial combat and frequently-used, powerful super moves. This combination makes matches feel like the clashes between godlike beings you would expect from the Dragon Ball anime. Getting to pick your dream-team of 3 Z Fighters or assorted alien menaces adds to the feeling that each match is some new, crazy episode of the beloved saga.

The natural combination of Dragon Ball and fighting games has produced other titles over the years, although none of them play similarly to DBFZ. Starting with the popular Budokai series in the early 2000’s, most of them feature 3D combat with a focus on movement and scale rather than traditional fighter mechanics.

But since DBFZ was developed by Guilty Gear & BlazBlue creators ArcSys, they chose to depart from that formula in favour of their usual movement-focused 2D gameplay. Now more accessible to fans of other fighters, and with mainstream appeal from the Dragon Ball cast and setting, DBFZ has fast become one of the world’s most played fighting games.

That global popularity has also translated into strong local scenes all around AU/NZ. High level DBFZ competition is available at regular tournaments anywhere those events are held! Our region has its own official online tournaments as well – like the 2018 Dragon Radar qualifier won by top Melbourne player Zed.

 

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The popularity of the Dragon Ball franchise is bringing in a lot of fresh fighting game players to try this new game. Fortunately, behind fast pace and dizzying combo potential DBFZ has a number of thoughtful touches to help you train up.

Firstly, the idea of “auto-combo” attacks have been developed to be more of a complete playstyle. As with some other fighters, mashing light attack will dial up a full combo which would normally take complicated inputs to perform, getting you some good damage. But DBFZ also lets you perform auto-combos with the other attack buttons, each of which has different tactical advantages.

 

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There are a few other essential options, each performed with one or two buttons. Every character can do an anti-air move as their opponent flies/falls towards them with down+heavy. If your opponent is just blocking everything, you can catch them with an overhead (forward+medium) or a Dragon Rush (light+medium attack). If you can’t get close – maybe they’re throwing Ki Blasts – try a Super Dash (special+heavy) or Vanish behind them (medium+heavy).

The final step in gameplay is to work out Assists. The characters you aren’t currently controlling can jump in from the sidelines to add a specific attack to your combo, give your opponent something extra to block or zone them out while you power up for meter (light+special). Different characters have their own Assist moves, so you have to work out what each of yours is good for – or build a team that has the ones you want.

While learning harder combos and setups will let you kill opponents in fewer hits, understanding how to land hits and defend yourself in the first place should be the priority. In high level play, pressure strings can be oppressive and many combos will be lethal. But the default mixup options of Vanish and Super Dash can be punished, and having the read on these attacks will reward you across every game of DBFZ.

 

 

For experienced FGC members the most significant mechanic of DBFZ is the Tag system. Like the VS. series, Skullgirls and other similar games, you need to understand the potential of your character’s assists and maintain a gameplan throughout each match. It’s essential both to have your team order worked out AND to know what each of your characters can do with meter and Sparking should they end up as your anchor.

While there are definitely top tier standouts among the cast, very few are considered unplayable. The examples set by top players show that it’s usually better to find a team that suits your playstyle – whether that’s big-bodied grapplers, those with high-damage combos, the best rushdown game, or anything else. If you have one character who is the apple of your eye, just fill out the team with consistent high-tiers who provide good assists, like Gotenks or Vegeta. Compared to some other tag-based games, the metagame here is still wide open.

If you’re looking for top players to follow, a good place to start is the game’s first EVO champion and multi-game superstar SonicFox, of team EchoFox. Moving over from dominating Netherrealm Studios games, he displays the same incredible knack for reading his opponents in DBFZ. A host of Japanese players are constantly challenging him, led by rushdown king and Adult Gohan master GGP|Kazunoko and the popular CAG|GO1 (go-ichi), famous for his impenetrable defense.

 

TOP PLAYERS IN AUSTRALIA

In Australia, there are standout players from around the country: the aforementioned Zed, BAM10 champion Baxter, Kanga|DAILOU and our top finisher at EVO, Perth player SaltyParis. In addition to monthly tournaments like Sydney’s York Street Battles and CouchWarriors ranbats in VIC/QLD, DBFZ has been a feature game at every recent major tournament. You can safely assume that if an event isn’t specifically for a different game, you’ll find Dragon Ball there.

The premiere international competition is the official DBFZ WORLD TOUR, where champions of each tournament stop are awarded one of the seven Dragon Balls! Not only are these some of the coolest trophies in the FGC, they qualify their owners to the eventual World Finals.


Another benefit of being the current top game, those searching for
DBFZ content and communities are spoilt for choice right now. Many fantastic players both locally and internationally are streaming their gameplay, in addition to the availability of full tournament VODs.

For those looking to join a broader community for discussion, check out the Facebook pages run by local TOs, and the “Australian Anime FGC” Discord server. There’s plenty of people out there at all levels of experience to help you find practice partners and improve your game.

 

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Baxter holding aloft the BAM10 trophy for DBFZ

 

AUSTRALIAN RESULTS

Results from AU/NZ Majors

TOP STREAMERS

Nakkiel (USA)twitch.tv/nakkiel_pnw  

Tatsunical (USA)  – twitch.tv/tatsunical  

HookgangGod (USA)twitch.tv/eduardo_hook

CAG|GO1 [and others] (JAP) twitch.tv/cyclops_osaka  

SaltyParis (WA)twitch.tv/saltyparis  

Athletico|Raptr (QLD)twitch.tv/raptr_au

DS|Baxter (QLD)twitch.tv/ham_baxter  

 

TOURNAMENT STREAMS

CouchWarriors Ranbat (VIC/QLD)twitch.tv/couchwarriors

NewGamePlusTV (VIC) twitch.tv/newgameplustv  

York Street Battles (NSW)twitch.tv/ozhadou

DBFZ World Tour Events – twitch.tv/dragonballfighterz

 

COMMUNITIES

Australian FGC FB – facebook.com/groups/1498441930379893/
New Zealand FGC FB – facebook.com/groups/standingfierce/

Aus Anime FGC Discord – discord.gg/ZUA8Ww5

CouchWarriors July 2018 Ranking Battle Results

The end of July sees the return of our monthly Ranking Battle events, with one slight change to the schedule. All of our Smash games are now being held under one roof, taking place on the 4th Saturday of each month alongside Rivals of Aether and Pokken!

Not only does our Smash scene benefit from joining together, this means our FGC RanBat will be packing in even more of your favourite games and events, with our TO’s hosting a free Tekken 3v3 tourney this month to start things off. If you are interested in running a bracket for any game for future events, please feel free to let us know and volunteer!

View the full brackets on Smash GG for FGC here and Smash Bros. + ROA here.

See below for the current year rankings to date. Read on after the break for this month’s winners.
(Smash + RoA results and RanBat points will be added after the event takes place)

SF5 Points Tekken 7 Points DOA5LR Points GGXrd Points
Somniac 38 Chand NY 40 Berzerk 32 Ashzu 48
Rupps 24 Lee Min Ho 32 AlexMD 32 Javi 36
syo 22 Aken 24 Ebabil 20 Feri 20
Burnoutfighter & Cadzow_ 18 Bboy Phoenix 20 ROBDAWGG619 14 Rindows & popo 12
DBFZ Points Sm4sh Points Melee Points Project M Points
DaBeast 20 Extra 58 Dekar 46 Tyler 52
Zed 16 Duon 28 Fess 34 Microsoft J 32
MajinBeng 14 Ignis 21 DonB 22 Dekar 23
TANA93 14 Ghost 20 Sora 16 Bubby 23
UNIST Points Injustice 2 Points ROA Points Pokken DX Points
Haiku 54 Zprime 28 OSU 32 AntWerp 48
Tomo009 36 Hazzles 25 SNC 26 Dan Dandy 28
Spoony 28 95leo 20 MAST 18 Sir Banana 24
Julian 19 GooGie 18 Neeson & Stutter 14 Techless 24

Read more

Community: The Australian FGC Ep11: Anthony “A1Major” Majarian – BAM special!

Community: The Australian FGC is a series of player profiles from our local scene. In each episode we ask our guest who they are, where they come from, what/who they play, and what is it about fighting games and the FGC that keeps them around.

This episode features Anthony “A1Major” Majarian, a prominent KOF player from South Australia. He tells us about his history in the SA arcade scene, the rise of the modern SA console tournament scene, what he loves about arcades, life+fighting game philosophy and why he keeps coming back to Battle Arena Melbourne (BAM).

This episode comes out just in time for BAM7 and was actually filmed last year at BAM6. This episode offers a no-holds barred glimpse into the raucous fun that goes on at BAM, and all the colourful characters and hype moments that happen. So if you want more fighting game action be sure to check BAM7 out in the Melbourne CBD, May 22-24!

BAM7 Facebook event:
https://www.facebook.com/events/680544222054295/
Venue: Event Room #2: CQ, 123 Queen Street, Melbourne
Registration:
http://couchwarriors.org/wp/battle-arena-melbourne-7/bam7-registration/

Stream:

If you can’t make the event check out our stream at http://www.twitch.tv/newgameplustv

 

Community: The Australian FGC Ep 10 Pt 1: Youssef “FaYd” Faddoul and David “Kyokugen” Lee

Dusty Cartridge has shut down, RIP DC! But the show must go on…

This episode filmed at Sydney major OHN12 features two pillars of the Sydney FGC. You have Youssef “FaYd” Faddoul, a huge community driver of Tekken and a former SBO competitor, and David “Kyokugen” Lee who is pushing the Sydney KOF and ST scene forward. Both guys are key organisers of the Sydney monthly YSB and put in huge amounts of work at events like OHN12.

Youssef and Kyo are two sides of a coin personality wise. David is the more reserved and shy one, whereas Youssef is the opinionated, loud-mouthed bundle of energy – yet they’re both just as lovable in their own way and represent the exact same heart and passion when it comes to supporting our community. In Part 1 of this episode we discuss their origins, OHN, Melbourne vs Sydney and an intimate encounter with a certain Mr. Umehara.

Hope you guys enjoy the episode and come to our next major: Southern Cross Championship at Adelaide, December 6-7!

http://sxc.agongame.net/sxc
https://www.facebook.com/events/571204462992371/

Community: The Australian FGC E08 Episode 08: Adric “Falco” Middleton and Sam Baxter

samadric

http://dustycartridge.com/videos/community-the-australian-fgc-episode-08-adric-falco-middleton-sam-baxter/

The fourth episode filmed at the Queensland major Buttonsmash is a double special featuring Adric “Falco” Middleton from South Australia and Sam “The Ham” Baxter from Queensland. Both of them are young and relatively new to the scene, but are widely considered to be two of the best players in Australia.

Falco is known for his amazing Zangief in Street Fighter IV and for winning tournaments without even owning the game on console! He has taken his multi-game ability to another level by winning the KOFXIII tournament at Buttonsmash, breaking Colonov’s long and uninterrupted streak of Australian KOF titles.

Sam Baxter is only 19 years old, and is already an international-class Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 player, claiming fourth place at SEAM2013 in Singapore as well as multiple top 3 placings in Australia. In this episode the duo go on to talk about their love for fighting games, community and competition, their local scenes and how new and hungry players can get on their level. Hope you guys enjoy this episode!

Community: The Australian FGC Episode 07 – Dejan Stantic

dejan

http://dustycartridge.com/videos/community-the-australian-fgc-episode-07-dejan-stantic/

The third episode filmed at the Queensland major ButtonSmash features Dejan Stantic, an organiser from the beautiful Gold Coast and the founder of the fighting game group Gold Coast Fighters.

Here in Australia we have a small population spread over such a large land mass, so you see a lot of small regional communities pop up run by passionate dudes like Dejan. Props to every regional community organiser out there for their hard work, I hope to see everybody get together at the yearly majors and that we can work together to make our national scene even bigger.

In this episode Dejan talks about; the Gold Coast scene, how the different communities in Australia influence each other, Buttonsmash 2014, and the correlation between fighting game players and musicianship. Hope you guys like it!

Community: The Australian FGC Episode 05 Aaron “Tulf” Costello

http://dustycartridge.com/videos/community-australia-fgc-episode-05-aaron-tulf-costello/

I was just up in Queensland in March for their annual major- Buttonsmash and managed to film a few episodes there. The first Buttonsmash special features the man behind the entire event and the main Brisbane tournament organiser, Aaron “Tulf” Costello. Aaron entered the scene about two years ago, being mainly an Injustice player.

At the time, the scene in Brisbane needed a boost with long-time organisers like Slapper Joe and JBHewitt wanting to move onto other things. Aaron and his Keep ‘Et Classy organisation stepped to fill the void, and he’s a great example of how you don’t have to be an FGC veteran to have a huge impact on your scene, all you need is the passion for growing the scene, and Aaron has that in spades.

Thanks to all the Buttonsmash staff for a great major, I had a great time, and hope you guys enjoy this episode.

For Buttonsmash results and a recap click HERE – (videos will be up soon)

Community: The Australian FGC Episode 03 Michael “Cactus” Ashmore

cact

The third episode of Community features Michael “Cactus” Ashmore. A long time mainstay in the Melbourne FGC, the Golden Child is mild-mannered in demeanour but packs a nasty far standing fierce. He’s a strangely modest individual, scratching his beard when he beats your ass with his Dhalsim and giggling good-humouredly when you hit him with something stupid. We learn more about how he got into the scene, why he loves travelling for interstate FGC events and arcade tournaments, and how he’d knock you out with a right old left!

Hope you guys like it!

Also, if you’re in Queensland this weekend be sure to check out their major: Buttonsmash! http://www.button-smash.com/

Community: The Australian FGC E02 Dan “DisasterFX” Richards

danrichardsscreenshot

Hi guys, the second episode is up featuring Dan “DisasterFX” Richards. Formerly a Smash player, he’s become a champion of the lesser popular games in the scene such as Injustice and SFxTekken. He’s become a great guy to have on the CouchWarriors board, and proof that everyone can become a great and invaluable contributor to your local community if you step up to the challenge.

Hope you guys like this episode!

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