Daigo Umehara's Event Schedule 2015

- Canada Cup's Master Series [January 9-11]
- 5th Niconico Shotenkaigi [January 18]
- Yonpahi radio show [January 23]
- 6th Niconico Shotenkaigi [January 25]
- Taipei Game Show [Jan 31]
- Tokaigi 2015 [Feb 1]

Friday, March 29, 2013

Umehara appears on employment website for university students

Rikunabi, an employment website for university students, posted an article about Daigo Umehara and his pro gamer job on November 28 last year but we just have time to finish this post.

Quick summary

First part
- When Umehara was a junior high school student, all he did was playing games. His father used to say "Find the thing you like and go for it." He couldn't think of anything else. However, his father didn't stop him even though he wasn't pleased. Umehara himself also worried because everyone else chose studying or sports.
- He thought "If I'm only interested in gaming, then just do it."
- Since after 7th grade, he always took a train to game center. There were a lot of delinquents at the game center and there were threats (hitting cabinet or coming to see his face) but he vowed to never let that make him down, even there's no adult to rely on.
- He was the type that "If other players play 100 hours, I'll just play 300 hours." in order to gain more experiences.
- He thought he would take a part-time job at some restaurant and spend that money on gaming after high school graduation. But 5 years after the graduation, that kind of living didn't happen. Even winning (the past) Evo, he felt nothing had changed. And since gaming wasn't an occupation, he decided to quit gaming at age 23, to become a pro mahjong player.

Second part
- Umehara chose mahjong because it's man vs. man like fighting games.
- He spent 3 years studying mahjong while working at a mahjong club.
- He then took nurse job because his father was working in hospital, and his mother was a nurse. He also studied to become a certified home helper. The job was tougher than he thought as it requires physical strength and studying. However, he was happy to see the feedbacks from the people whom he took care of.
- His friends dragged him to the game center again, after 3 years and a half. The friends said he's still good at it so he began to go to the game centers again after work.
- He quitted the nurse job that he was doing for a year and a half when he signed the Mad Catz's contract.
- He said, in game world, there's no clear line between pros and amateurs. Sometimes the gap between them is short. But he wants to impress people by his gameplay as a pro. This's how he differentiate himself from amateurs. He may struggle but he's not giving up. He wants to give some inspiration to the viewers. Something like 'I'm going to continue to try my best, too."
- He said motivation is important. You can't just repeat the same thing everyday. Always assign yourself a task of what you can improve. If this part isn't good, then work to correct it. If people can do this faster, then find a way to do it faster, too. This way of thinking will eventually turn "duty" into "job."

Umehara appears in sports magazine

It's revealed on the official Twitter account that Daigo Umehara appeared in an article about Street Fighter and game center in 90's on a Japanese sports magazine "Sports Graphic Number" that was released on March 7.

Umehara to attend New York University event

It's announced just now that Daigo Umehara will attend Spring Fighter 2013 in New York. The event is organized by New York University Game Center. It will be held on April 13 (10am to midnight).

Umehara and Seth Killian will have a talk session about "life in and outside the Street Fighter scene."

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Tougeki suspended indefinitely

The organizer of Tougeki announced today via the official site that the fighting game tournament Tougeki or Super Battle Opera will be suspended indefinitely.

The news come out only just hours after we posted about Arcadia going bimonthly. As you probably know Tougeki is run by Arcadia staff. If Arcadia is in serious trouble then it must also affect Tougeki.

This thing was actually hinted by the organizer since last year when they announced Tougeki 2012. A message was posted in Japanese on the official site saying that Tougeki 2012 may be the last.

The nightmare that is called Tougeki 2012

It is a shame though that Tougeki has to end with a bad memory. We already have a post about (some of) this. In order to make more money, Tougeki was held together with a game festival so they can sell expensive tickets. The "festival" was held in a remote open area and attendances had to suffer the heat. The sunlight made it hard to see the game monitor and the staff had to hold sunscreen behind the player at some point. There were also reports about malfunctions of some game machines. It was clear that most people were there because of Tougeki and an Idolm@ster concert. Other stage shows did not receive much attention. In the last day after Tougeki finals was over, the last talk show (as scheduled) on the stage was cancelled, probably because people did not want to be in the middle of nowhere in the dark for nothing.

Photos showed that there were a lot of empty seats, so we highly doubt that the event was even a success commercially.

Who to blame?

A big fighting game tournament is a great way to stimulate the arcade scene so magazine can sell. The problem comes when the tournament itself needs money. Tougeki is organized by Arcadia staff with supports from mother company Enterbrain. Enterbrain is a big media publisher that also has the famous gaming magazine Famitsu under its roof. But while Arcadia has become weak, Famitsu is still going strong. Without fear of losing magazine buyers, Famitsu has the latest news on its website and now has a weekly show on Niconico. It suggests that there was some mismanagement going on in Arcadia division. Arcadia and Tougeki were led by the same person – Masashi Sawatari. He appeared a lot last year to promote Tougeki, that was when we learnt about his characteristic. He did not look convincing and he did not sound so sure about the things he said. He did not know much about KVO, a tournament that Tougeki gave quota for the finals. In short, you will never want to let this guy manage your properties.

The guy left Enterbrain three months after Tougeki 2012.

Tougeki replacement

Quick question, what do we have now? Quick answer, nothing. You need some huge funding in order to organize a true national tournament. Tougeki had qualifiers in all regions in Japan and not just one title. And since Tougeki was arcade tournament, the national qualifiers can be done with the supports of game centers. If Tougeki replacement is console tournament then you need to rent places around the country for the qualifiers. This is not to mention the rent of a place big and good enough for the finals.

Regional qualifiers are important as some players do not spend ten of thousands yen to travel to Tokyo unless they are guaranteed to be in the finals. Because at that point, they can at least get their names or faces recognized.

Anyway, it is funny though that now the Street Fighter players have no national tournament to attend while there is still national tournament for BlazBlue, Persona 4 The Ultimate in Mayonaka Arena, Melty Blood, and even Under Night In-Birth. These game are back by their respective publishers. Will Capcom jump in now for a yearly national tournament? It is hard to tell when they are not promoting something. Capcom Japan never gave prize money (or anything worthwhile except certificates) even Street Fighter IV is the most popular fighting game. Last year, Capcom also "celebrated" Street Fighter's 25th anniversary with pay-per-view tournament.

Arcadia magazine going bimonthly

It's announced yesterday that the Japanese arcade gaming magazine Arcadia will change from releasing monthly to bimonthly, starting from April 30 (June issue). They explained that the change is due to the growth of arcade gaming in Japan and they want to cover more games, more genres. The magazine is expected to have 60,000 copies printed.

The porting of the popular fighting games to the home consoles is always a big problem but game companies like Sega and Square Enix, who also own game centers, are there to make sure the business doesn't go down. Square Enix had come up with arcade games that literally can't be played on consoles, such as Lord of Vermillion and Gunslinger Stratos. Lord of Vermillion is a trading card game that plays like action game – players have to move their physical cards on the sensor board to move their characters on the screen. Gunslinger Stratos is a 4 on 4 light-gun third-person shooter where in-game weapons change accordingly to how the guns (two guns per player) are handled.

However, Arcadia going bimonthly (once every 2 months) suggests that the magazine has had poor sales, because the price will still be the same, meaning the number of pages will probably be the same. It looks like they'll focus more on Arcadia Extra (guidebook dedicated to one game).

Arcadia was launched in 1999. E-book version (via bookwalker.jp) was launched in 2011. Daigo Umehara is one of the columnists since 2009 and the compilation of his column was released in February this year.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Introduction to Ougon Musou Kyoku Cross

We had an Introduction to Ougon Musou Kyoku before (in 2011) but that post is outdated and we feel that we can add a lot of things so here's the 2nd version.

Reasons why you should play Ougon Musou Kyoku
  • It has no comeback mechanics. (Example: Deal massive/extra damage when having less HP or dying)
  • It's a fighting game for competitive play that actually needs skills to win. (Not a party game)
  • Strong art direction.
  • Story is based on a novel, not a filler like most fighting games.
  • 19 playable characters.
  • Long combos are either "burstable" or interruptable.
  • Not a game of "airdashers."
  • Generally no air-blocking.
  • Metaworld system lets you add frame advantage to your actions.
  • No true aerial combo.
  • Projectiles are not overpowered nor useless.
  • There's Guard Crush like Street Fighter Zero. (This encourages offensive playstyles)
  • A normal move also deals chip damage when blocked. (This encourages offensive playstyles)
  • It requires more strategies than other fighting games.
  • Tag system eliminates bad matchups of characters.
  • The tag system prevents a one-character show.
  • Great camera work.
  • It's alright if you can't even do a Hadoken or Shoryuken. It has Princess Mode!
  • "The best fighting game of all time" - Beast Note

Umineko no Naku Koro ni: Ougon Musou Kyoku (うみねこのなく頃に「黄金夢想曲」) is a fighting game spin-off from a popular novel game that was later made into a 26-episode anime and 45+ volumes of manga.

Ougon Musou Kyoku first started off as a "doujin" (self-published work sold in events or specific shops) PC game. (late December 2010) A game with "doujin quality" usually has low production value, and is cheap. But this game, while being doujin work, has higher production value than many other games released on consoles. It delivers quality gameplay. It has Training Mode, Replay Mode, and simple Online Mode. They even hired all the famous voice actors/actresses from the anime.

Ougon Musou Kyoku Cross append disc was released in late 2011. It adds 8 new characters and applies big changes to the game.

What you need to play Ougon Musou Kyoku Cross

Game modes
  • Arcade - Story mode, you can unlock pictures in gallery and system voices here
  • Versus - Local match (offline player vs. player), CPU match, online match, watch replay
  • Training - Training mode, you can display input and record dummy
  • Option - Rules and system config, gallery mode, your stats (clear time, character usages, max combo, max damage)

Things you probably want to know
  • This PC game doesn't have auto-matching for online play. To play online, you need to enter IP address of your partner to connect or give away yours. (However, you can train while waiting.)
  • A cheap CPU with decent graphics card will run this game fine. (Make sure DirectX is properly installed.)
  • Your PC should be able to display Japanese language (Just change system locale to Japanese.) for installation and configuration (such as button mapping).
  • This game supports controller.

Where and how to buy
These online shops below sell the products but they won't ship outside Japan. You'll need to find a way to import yourself if you're outside Japan.
Amiami has international shipping but they don't have OMK and OMK Cross in stock anymore. You may try to contact them asking for restock.

Gameplay and systems


1. Your Meta Gauge (You can declare Meta Sekai only when it glows red.)
2. SP Gauge of on-screen character
3. Break Gauge (Full = Guard Break)
4. SP Gauge of off-screen character
5. Touch Gauge (Change = Tag OK, Wait = Can't tag)
6. This circle indicates that the character is currently under effect of an ability.
7. This crown icon means the player is playing in Princess Mode.
8. Round Count (This won't show if your settings is one round a game.)

Touch System (Tag System)
Ougon Musou Kyoku is a tag team fighting game, but the tag system is not just a gimmick. Because of how you gain SP, you'll need to learn when to tag and when/how to spend your SP gauges.

Two characters you choose share the same health bar, but have separated SP gauges. They must work together as on-screen character doesn't gain SP for its actions and anything you do will give SP to off-screen character instead. Switching or "Touch" (as the game calls) between two characters also helps you continue a combo or escape a combo.

There're 5 kinds of Touch
  • Normal Touch = Just press the Touch button. This's the "Raw Tag." It can restore "recoverable health."
  • Attack Touch = Press Touch button when you hit the opponent. The character that jumps in can continue a combo. It also works as an overhead attack (must block standing).
  • Guard Touch = Press Touch button when blocking an attack. Cost 1 SP gauge from the partner. It also helps you escape from a block string AND gives you frame advantage.
  • Damage Touch = Press Touch button when taking damage. Cost 2 SP gauges from the partner. It can break opponent's combo and also pushes him away ("Burst").
  • Assault Touch = 236 (Hadoken)+Touch button. Cost 2 SP gauges from the partner. Your character is invincible while charging toward the opponent.
After a Touch you'll need to wait for a while until you can do it again. The cooldown will be showed via the Touch Gauge. The type of Touch you use will determine how long you'll wait. Normal Touch is risky but gives the shortest cooldown, only around 2.5 seconds. Attack Touch gives around 5.5 seconds. Guard Touch gives around 8.5 seconds. Damage Touch gives around 15.5 seconds. Assault Touch gives around 14.5 seconds.

    Meta Sekai (Metaworld)
    One SP gauge is required to declare Meta Sekai. Meta Declaration is done by pressing all 3 attack buttons (ABC) at the same time. There're so many benefits if you can enter your world.
    • You gain frame advantage the moment you enter.
    • You can cancel recovery frame of the move you do before your Meta Sekai.
    • You can use Meta exclusive move "Meta Special" as many times as you like.
    • Two of your abilities are activated at the same time. 
    Furthermore, your opponent can't declare his Meta Sekai in yours, so this will also delay his progress.

    Meta Challenge
    Meta Declaration can be negated by Meta Objection which requires 2 SP gauges. However, Meta Objection itself can also be continued by Meta Redeclaration for 2 SP gauges. The challenge ends when one side doesn't have enough SP to perform the action or simply chooses to let it go.

    If your Objection is successful, the opponent won't be able to declare a new one for a while (on cooldown). Though the failed Objection won't be useless. Each Objection will reduce the Meta clock by 25% each time.

    In case both players have 5 SP, the situation will be like this.
    1. You declare Meta. (5-1=4) *If successful you get 100% Meta clock
    2. He objects. (5-2=3)
    3. You redeclare. (4-2=2) *If successful you get 75% Meta clock
    4. He objects again. (3-2=1)
    5. You redeclare. (2-2=0) *If successful you get 50% Meta clock
    6. He can't object now because he only has 1 SP left.
    The Meta Objection is also done by pressing all 3 attack buttons (ABC) at the same time during your opponent's Meta Declaration.
    Think wisely before you object a Meta. If you think your opponent is not going to do massive damage from it then let it go. In the same way, you can declare a Meta just to bait out opponent's SP.

    SP Gauge
    This gauge is filled by both doing and taking damage. You choose to spend the SP for Meta Declaration/Objection or doing SP moves. Similar to Street Fighter's EX moves, SP moves are the stronger version of the special moves. You do it by just pressing two buttons at the same time (AB) instead of one. If you see SP Button in the command list, it means pressing Light (A) and Medium (B) at the same time.

    Example: Battler's Blue Truth (236+A or B or C) is a projectile that only goes half screen. But SP Blue Truth (236+AB) can go fullscreen and do more damage.

    There's also a unique kind of SP moves in every characters nicknamed "Ranbu." All Ranbu is done by the same command which is 236236+C. Ranbu is costly as it requires 2 SP gauges but it's useful in certain situations. George's Ranbu can reset opponent's Touch Gauge, making the opponent unable to "burst" out of his combo, for example.

    You can activate a character's ability by using Normal Touch, Assault Touch, or Meta Sekai.
    1. If Character A does a Normal Touch with Character B, Character B who jumps in will get the effect of Character A's ability.
    2. If Character A does an Assault Touch with Character B, Character B who jumps in will get the effect of Character A's ability.
    3. Character who declares a Meta Sekai will get the effects of his own ability AND his partner's ability.

    Effect wears off when the magic circle under the character disappears. How long the effect will last varies. The effect given by Bernkastel's Normal Touch lasts 15 seconds, Beatrice's is 10 seconds, Ronove's is 7 seconds, for example.

    Each character has a unique ability
    • Battler [Resurrection] = Gradually increase health.
    • Beatrice [Infinity SP] = One time only, an SP special move doesn't cost SP gauge.
    • Ange [Stun Boost] = Your attack does more Stun damage, making opponent dizzy easier.
    • Lucifer [Attack Touch] = One time only, you can do an Attack Touch without cost or waiting.
    • Shannon [Auto guard] = Auto-guard when possible.
    • Kanon [Silent Attack] = Opponent gains less SP from your attacks.
    • Virgilia [Brimful] = Gradually increase SP of both of your characters.
    • Ronove [Counter Boost] = Increase counter-attack damage.
    • Eva Beatrice [Berserk] = Increase attack power.
    • Chiester 410 [Break Boost] = Your attacks fill your opponent's Break Gauge faster.
    • Jessica [Shave Boost] = Increase chip damage.
    • George [Patience] = Your (on-screen) character gain SP every time you block an attack. 
    • Rosa [Detachment] = Make your attack reset your opponent's Touch Gauge upon hitting. This makes your opponent unable to tag for a while.
    • Erika [Force Counter] = The first hit to connect opponent will always be a counter hit.
    • Dlanor [Armor Boost] = Increase defense powers. (Opponent does less damage.)
    • Willard [SP Cancel] = One time only, special moves can be cancelled into special moves in higher tiers.
    • Lambdadelta [Ultra PER] = Instantly reset Break Gauge to zero.
    • Bernkastel [Meta Boost] = Your Meta Sekai lasts longer and the cooldown between a declaration is also shorten.
    • Black Battler [Massacre] = You gain life from doing damage.

    Health and Stun
    Although your team share the same HP bar, each character has different amount of HP and dizzy resistance.

    For example:
    Black Battler has lowest HP.
    Lucifer, Eva, Bernkastel have lowest dizzy resistance.

    • This game has 3 attack buttons: Light (A), Medium (B), Strong (C).
    • You can dash forward and back dash.
    • High Jump = Crouch and jump immediately.
    • Touch button for switching character.
    • Appeal button slightly increases health.
    • Throw = Press BC at the same time. (Can also use to escape a throw)
    • SP button = Press AB at the same time. Used for doing SP moves.
    • Meta Declaration/Objection = Press ABC at the same time.
    • Ukemi (Safe Fall) = Press any attack button in the air while falling.
    • Dash Cancel = Dash after standing C attack connected. (Used to continue combo.)

    Special status
    • Stun (or dizzy) = Unable to move or attack or defend or tag in partner.
    • Nullify = Two moves from both players can sometimes push each other if the hitboxes connect.
    • Counter Hit = A counter attack deals more damage than usual.
    • Guard Break = When your Break Gauge is full, you can't block for a second.

    Other game mechanics
    • Taking several hits in short period of time can cause dizzy. You're unable to do anything when dizzy, except denying a throw.
    • It's possible to attack opponent while he's lying on the floor in the first few frames after a knockdown. This's called Down Attack. The attack won't do full damage, however.
    • A normal move deals chip damage when blocked.
    • There is Damage Scaling. (Longer combo means less damage.)
    • In some situation, you can attack twice in the air in one jump.
    • At character select screen, you can choose between 2 control types - Normal Mode and Princess Mode. Princess Mode lets you do special moves by pressing only one button or so. It's basically Easy Mode.

    Option and settings
    • Japanese players normally play under this settings: 3 life bars, 180 seconds, 1 round.
    • You can change System Voice (same as match announcer) here.
    • You can unlock user-submitted pictures in gallery by just seeing loading screen. The pictures you see are what you unlocked. You can also choose not to display these pictures.
    • You can turn off Normal Mode or Princess Mode so it never ask you to choose again at character select screen.
    • Replay options: Autosave all, Ask each time, Never save.

    Screen mode and button mapping
    You can access this in Bootup.exe in the game folder. Note that if you choose Window mode you can resize using mouse scroll.

    This game only needs 4 buttons to play: Light, Medium, Strong, Touch. But you also need a Start button to pause the game.

          Future development
          It looks like 07 Expansion, the game developer, has no intention to continue Ougon Musou Kyoku project. But this may change if a lot of people ask about it. You love the game? You want to see it on PlayStation Network? You want to buy download version? You want to see a sequel? You want it localized? Let them know at 07 Expansion's official Twitter.

          Sunday, March 24, 2013

          James Chen writes about Unblockable, suggests how to fix

          James Chen wrote a very interesting article about unblockable cross-up issue in Street Fighter IV, including suggestions of how to fix it.

          - Chen explains how some Unblockable is actually unblockable, not just blocking the wrong direction.
          - He explains that moving forward can cause character's "center" to move back slightly (which is a flaw of system). This can be a serious problem when dealing with cross-up okizeme (wake-up game) because you have too little time to move your center out of danger zone. If you hold back, you will block wrong direction. If you hold forward, your character won't block because your opponent is still TECHNICALLY in front of you.
          - He points out that fixing this to the core will probably be too tough.
          - One of his suggestions: Players should have more ways to rise from a knockdown (normal, quick rise, slow rise) to deal with well-timed okizeme.
          - One of his suggestions: Blocking should stay legit both directions a few frames after Block Stun or rise.
          - One of his suggestions: If the centers (of 2 characters) are too close, you should be able to block both directions.

          [Video] Official Under Night In-birth tournament finals

          - Official Under Night In-birth tournament announced


          Part 2

          In case you wonder, Kubo (unofficial national UNI champ) didn't participate because the qualifiers only took place in Tokyo and he lives in Nagoya.

          Saturday, March 23, 2013

          Official Under Night In-birth tournament is starting

          The official Under Night In-Birth tournament finals is starting soon!

          Capcom prepares for SF4 update, looking for suggestions

          It's announced that Capcom is planning to update Street Fighter IV once again, and they're looking for suggestions about character balancing, starting now.

          Though only balancing is mentioned, it's likely that this update will add some new characters and even new system. Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition was released on console on June 30, 2011 (December 16, 2010, in arcades), and since then Capcom was unable to make real money out of the SF4 series (except $40 costume DLCs). The Version 2012 update was free and came after a lot of complaints about balances. For those reasons, this upcoming "update" isn't likely to be free either. (Yes, we're talking about a new $40 game.) Otherwise, Capcom will be spending resources for no real profit.

          Friday, March 22, 2013

          Mad Catz Unveiled summary

          Mago 1-5 Ryan Hart
          1. 1-2
          2. 2-1
          3. 1-2
          4. 1-2
          5. 0-2 *perfect in last round ending with angry charge tiger uppercut
          6. 0-2

          Tokido (Magneto, Doom, Phoenix) 4-7 Yipes (Magneto, Dante, Vergil)
          1. 1-0
          2. 0-1
          3. 1-0 *perfect
          4. 0-1
          5. 1-0 *Dark Phoenix to rescue
          6. 1-0 *Dark Phoenix to rescue but it was close
          7. 0-1 *Yipes changed to Spencer/Vergil/Hawkeye HE oneshot'd Dark Phoenix
          8. 0-1
          9. 0-1
          10. 0-1 *HE oneshot'd Dark Phoenix
          11. 0-1

          Umehara 5-3 Valle
          1. 1-2
          2. 2-1 *nice super in last round
          3. 2-1
          4. 2-0
          5. 0-2
          6. 2-0 *perfect in last round
          7. 0-2
          8. 2-1

          Thursday, March 21, 2013

          [Video] TOPANGA's game center tour in Nagoya

          This's video of TOPANGA's game center tour in Nagoya on February 23.

          - At the beginning, Mago, Fuudo, Bon-chan were at Nagoya Castle.
          - Momochi, who lives in Nagoya, joined them.
          - They went to Game Sky, a well-known game center in Nagoya.
          - In the car, Bon-chan asked Momochi what to do in Nagoya. Momochi replied "Hitsumabushi" (a type of rice with grilled eel).
          - Mago: "It seems there're a lot of Komeda (coffee shop) in Nagoya, around 50 branches?" (Bon said 143 branches.) Momochi: "It's hardly 20!" Fuudo: "Don't just kill conversation." (everyone laugh)
          - Mago started talking about World Cosplay Summit (world cosplay grand final in Nagoya). Bon then tried to make fun of his otaku-ness by asking in details. Mago: "Well, I don't know what characters they're cosplaying except Sailor Moon (roll eyes)."
          - (In the restaurant) Bon: "(TOPANGA) B league is surely strong, but what do I know I'm A league player!" Mago: "B is tough ....probably tougher than A. (roll eyes)" Mago: "I can feel it's tough even I'm yet to play! (laugh)"
          - They met the owner of Game Sky. Although he didn't have anything good about his place to say, he said everyone get along well.

          Wednesday, March 20, 2013

          Umehara confirmed for NorCal 2013

          The organizer John Choi announced that Daigo Umehara will participate Norcal Regionals 2013 which will take place between April 26-28. He also teased the possibility of (exhibition?) match between Umehara and Infiltration.

          A lot of things happened at Norcal 2011. We saw Umehara played Marvel vs. Capcom3 for the first time in a tournament, won Justin Wong in a MvC3 game, defeated Infiltration twice to win SSF4AE, etc. It'd be perfect if there wasn't the worst commentator and a cancer of FGC on the mic.

          Tuesday, March 19, 2013

          Mad Catz to sell new affordable fightstick in Japan

          Mad Catz announced that it will release Mad Catz Arcade Fightstick Pro for PlayStation 3 on March 28 and for Xbox 360 later in Japan. Mad Catz sticks in the market are currently between 16,800- 23,800 yen, but this new stick will be retailed at 12,800 yen.

          Most importantly, Umehara shows how popular he is in Japan as gaming news sites put his name in the headline. Niconico also picked this up and put it in the news feed that will be displayed on top of every user streams on the network. Umehara is famous on Niconico so the headline is just "The arcade controller used by Umehara"

          Mad Catz's arcade controller for pros "Arcade Fightstick Pro" for PS3 & Xbox 360 announced

          Mad Catz's arcade controller used by Umehara, Tokido, Mago "Arcade Fightstick Pro" releasing March 28

          "Arcade Fightstick Pro" used by Umehara, Tokido, Mago to be released
          Game Watch
          Mad Catz releasing "Arcade Fightstick Pro" - Arcade controller used by Umehara and pros.

          Inside Games 
          Mad Catz's "Arcade Fightstick Pro" used by Umehara announced for Japan

          Mad Catz's "Arcade Fightstick Pro" used by Umehara announced for Japan

          Sunday, March 17, 2013

          Umehara vs. Alex Valle exhibition planned for Mad Catz Unveiled

          Mad Catz's MarkMan revealed that an exhibition match between Daigo Umehara and Alex Valle is planned for Mad Catz Unveiled event in Boston on March 21.

          Three exhibition matches are now confirmed.
          - Umehara vs. Valle (SSF4AE2012)
          - Tokido vs. Yipes (UMvC3)
          - Mago vs. Ryan Hart (SSF4AE2012)

          There'll be streaming at twitch.tv/madcatz.

          Umehara and Valle met each other for the first time in 1998 at Street Fighter Zero 3 international grand final in California.

          (During ReveLAtions 2011. Photo by Nekohashi (@u1yutty))

          Statistics for SF4
          - [SSF4 launch party exhibition] Umehara (Guile) 2-1 Valle (Ryu)
          - [Socal Regionals 2010] Umehara (Ryu) 2-0 Valle (Ryu)
          - [Norcal Regionals 2010] Umehara (Ryu) 2-0 Valle (Ryu)
          - [Evo 2011] Umehara (Yun) 2-1 Valle (Ryu)

          Saturday, March 16, 2013

          Capcom to hold all-night Vampire Resurrection stream on Nico

          Nuki revealed tonight that Capcom will hold an all-night Vampire Resurrection stream on Niconico on March 19 (next Tuesday) starting from 11 PM JST. In the show, players such as Nuki will come to have online match against users from home. Capcom producer Ayano will also participate.

          Friday, March 15, 2013

          Kakugeibu! vol.1 releasing today (Umehara, Tokido, Mago are junior highschool girls!)

          Tip from Akiki-san (Sako's wife). The first volume of Kakugeibu!, the manga that has Daigo Umehara, Tokido, and Mago turn into a small girl is being released today in Japan.

          Kakugeibu! (Kaku Game Bukatsu! or KGB or Fighting Game Club!) is the story about junior highschool girls in Kakugeibu (Fighting Art Club, same sound but different meaning), a school club of fighting games. As seen below, these characters are based on real players.
          • Ume (green hair) is the club's ace player. She's less than 140 cm. and her real name is Koume (can mean "Little Ume"). Her personality sounds exactly like Umehara.
          • Tokito (purple hair) is rich and is the head of the club. She's a daughter of president of a small game company, almost anything in the club belong to her.
          • Mako is in charge of machine maintenance but is also an amateur model. She's Tokito's childhood friend.

          Kakugeibu! is a "yonkoma" (4-panel comic) that was first serialized in Arcadia Magazine since last year. Many of yonkoma were later turn into anime and became a hit (like Lucky Star and K-ON!), will this one make it?!

          As usual, you can buy this manga from Amazon Japan.

          Umehara joining Mad Catz Unveiled in Boston next week

          Daigo Umehara will be joining Mad Catz Unveiled event in Boston next week on March 21. The event is a product preview and hands-on event held just before PAX East event (March 22-24, also in Boston). Mago and Tokido will also be there and there'll also be some exhibition matches.

          Note that this will be the second time for Umehara in East Coast, the first time was in Orlando, Florida.

          Exhibition (planned)
          - Tokido vs. Yipes in UMvC3
          - Mago vs. Ryan Hart in SSF4AE2012

          Tuesday, March 12, 2013

          Gunslinger Stratos mook to come with Umehara's gameplay video

          It's revealed that the mook (magazine+book) of Gunslinger Stratos which will be released on April 2 will come with a bonus DVD featuring match footages of Daigo Umehara's gameplay video from the official national tournament in January.

          Saturday, March 9, 2013

          Nero-tan vs Sentos FT5 result (Sentos Carnival III Final)


          This's the final of Sentos Carnival III from February 28. It's match between well-known female player Nero-tan and Sentos, the organizer himself. Sentos doesn't play competitive but managed to stay at 4000 PP playing random select on Xbox Live. He even beat Nuki (Seth) on the way here.

          Sentos Carnival is an online tournament where online players between amateur to just-below-top-class are invited to compete in. It's for fun and for the hype.

          Previous posts (results and videos)
          - Karipaku vs. Nero-tan
          - Karipaku vs. KSK
          - Nero-tan vs. Kokujin

          Spoiler below

          Umehara to have book talk at bookstore

          It's announced that Daigo Umehara will have a book talk at B&B bookstore on March 29 (8PM-10PM). He and a famous blogger Chikirin will talk about Willpower to Keep Winning at the event. The entrance fee is 1,500 yen (get 1 free drink).

          It was Chikirin who mentioned about Umehara's book on her blog and helped sending the book back to top 10 of Amazon Japan chart in January. She wrote 3 books and her Twitter has more than 94,000 followers.

          Friday, March 8, 2013

          Umehara vs. Sako in Vampire Resurrection PV2

          As promised, the second part of Vampire Resurrection promotional video is posted today (first part here).

          Vampire/Darkstalkers Resurrection will be released on March 14.

          - Capcom producer Ayano and Nuki talk about screen styles that you can choose in the game: Over-the-Shoulder, Retro, Arcade Cabinet, Wide.
          - Although it says in the video that Sako is Vampire Savior national No.1, Sako had never won any major individual tournament. His best was top 4 in Tougeki 2004 (according to Famitsu). (He won pre-Tougeki 2004 5 on 5 tournament which is a team tournament.)
          - On the other hand, Nuki was actually Vampire Savior national No.2 at Gamest Cup (where he lost to Umehara in the final). (When Gamest Magazine stopped, many staff went with Arcadia Magazine that later organized Tougeki.)
          - Umehara and Sako has an online match. (This's to test online play.)
          - This's more like a PR match rather than a serious one since both players changed characters freely.
          - (Impression after the match) Umehara said "I didn't feel any lag. Because the game is speedy, no lag is good."
          - Famitsu has full page ads of this promotion.

          Friday, March 1, 2013

          Umehara and Sako in Vampire Resurrection promotion video

          Since the two are well-known Vampire/Darkstalkers players, everyone knows it's coming. Capcom today posted a promotional video of Vampire Resurrection featuring Daigo Umehara and Sako. This's only the first part and mainly has interviews which were done by Nuki, a well-known Vampire player himself. The second part which will focus on gameplay and matches between Umehara and Sako will be posted on March 8.

          - Umehara began the series at around 13 years old, Sako at around elementary school.
          - Umehara said that Vampire has more ways to approach the opponent. In Street Fighter II you can't jump. He also said that Guard Cancel can counter tick throw.
          - Umehara talked about the hype when Vampire Hunter/Darkstalkers 2 released.
          - Nuki asked about Umehara's 286 winstreak legend at Akihabara district. Due to system limitation, the counter stopped at 255 and reset, Umehara said it's sad you need a witness (laugh). (The competition was high in this district.)
          - Umehara's talked about his first time at (Vampire Hunter) national tournament. Umehara saw two players, Donovan player and Bishamon player, talking about Bishamon's ghost hand grab (Oni Kubihineri). "What do you think about this move?" "That move is dirty I'll never use it." "I think so, too." They seemed to be good friends until they played each other. Umehara saw the Bishamon player use that move and mashed like crazy (laugh). He then realized they're all opponents (laugh). (For this EX move, you can mash stick and buttons for additional hits.)
          - Sako was impressed and learnt about 1-hit Advancing Guard tech in Vampire Savior/Darkstalkers 3 by asking people.
          - Sako said the "Sako Special" was a result from practicing everyday all day on Sega Saturn. He said that the setup was good because it's still ok even when an attack is missed when in corner. (Sako Special is (Bulleta/B.B. Hood's) one-frame semi-infinite)
          - In the past, Sako, invited by Oboro (player), went to play Umehara who was already famous at the time. Sako won but he said he was happy enough just to be able to fight Umehara. Umehara said that at the time he was into Street Fighter Zero 3 and didn't play Vampire Savior much but still gave Sako a hard time. (Umehara lives in Tokyo while Sako and Oboro live in Kansai region.)
          - Sako talked about pre-Tougeki 2004 5 on 5 tournament where he won the strongest Bulleta player in Kantou region Kosho in mirror match in the final. (Kantou vs. Kansai rivalry is like East Coast vs. West Coast rivalry in America)
          - The video is narrated by Daisuke Ono, one of the most famous (male) voice actors in Japan.

          Nuki's Twitter already hinted that this video was made on January 28.