This interview was conducted at the lobby of the Rydges, so please forgive us for the elevator music in the background.
Thanks to Dave for another great banner, and the Melbourne community for contributing questions. And thanks to Gamerbee for sitting down with us despite being very tired.
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Our guest for the introduction to the Gamerbee interview is EXC355UM of Shadowloo.com, the main man behind Shadowloo Showdown.
Don’t be a Scrub Podcast Episode 6 Introduction- EXC355UM
Spidercarnage: Hi everyone, this is episode six of the Don’t be a Scrub Podcast. We are outside in the Box Hill area. And today we have one of the organisers of Shadowloo Showdown with us. It’s Ali (EXC355UM).
EXC355UM: Hey what’s up guys.
S: So we’re just doing a bit of an intro here. Just to see…So why don’t you tell a little bit about how Shadowloo Showdown started and what was your highlight of the weekend.
E: Well, my brothers (Sol and Just-S/Bosslogic) came up to me and they’re like; “Ai, let’s invite some international guests”.
But BAM just happened already. So when are you gonna invite them? And they’re like, “Let’s just start our own thing.” And at first I thought they were crazy but if they’re gonna do this they might as well do it with me. Since I’m the only sane one.
So we started getting to work on that, trying to invite some people. A lot of them were hesitant at first because we’ve never had a tournament in our name, Shadowloo’s name. And a lot of these guys have never been to Australia so it was a bit hard convincing them. But eventually, they all came around.
And the other hard part was trying to find the venue in such a short time during Christmas. We were lucky to find the venue that we used, and everyone was happy with it. Plus it had everything we needed. Internet especially, the wired [connection] so we can stream it.
Yeah, I think it turned out really successful. We got a decent amount of players come down, and 3,000 I think at one point [for] streaming. It’s a new record for an Australian stream. And for our first event, I feel like we did…it was pretty successful.
S: Definitely. I mean, when you think about it. Me and Mutton was talking about it: this was basically the first international Street Fighter tournament in Australia. Okay, you have EVO APAC, but that’s again [a] EVO qualifier, so we don’t really count that. So congrats.
Muttonhead: Don’t salt Sydney.
S: I’m not salting Sydney. I’m just sayin’. It’s not an official tournament where people showed up because it’s more of a qualifier for the bigger tournament. So.
E: I see, I see what you’re saying. Technically in that way, yeah. It’s the first official tournament where people have to come to here, not…you know, you’re here to go somewhere else. So I see where you’re coming from.
S: So what was your highlight of Shadowloo Showdown? Besides all the driving?
E: I think it was…oh man. The driving.
I think it was meeting them (Tokido, Gamerbee and Mago) in person. Because I wasn’t sure what they’d be like. You know, you see them on the stream and stuff.
S: A lot shorter.
M: Don’t salt the Asians.
E: Mago looked taller than I’d thought he would be. But no, they turned out to be really cool. Mago speaks more English than I thought he would. Same with Gamerbee and Tokido. And I was really…because we can talk to them, we interacted with them a lot more.
Daigo was a really cool dude, and especially when I interviewed him he seemed like a really nice guy.
But it was very hard to connect with him. Because of the language barrier.
But these guys, they were fucking around, trash talking with us and we were trash talking them. I think we felt like…they had a bit more fun because they understood us and we understood them.
And a lot of people are saying; you don’t see Mago [being] very happy when he goes to foreign countries, like he doesn’t interact too much [with other people]. People say that, but I don’t know what they’re talking about because he seemed like he had an awesome time.
S: Especially on Saturday night.
E: Yeah, Saturday night.
M: The Beast…is unleashed. With alcohol.
E: That’s a whole another episode right there.
It was just meeting him and becoming friends with him. And also, you wonder if it’s just friendship while they’re here. But you know, Tokido’s gone back and he’s already started a blog and mentioned us already. So we must’ve left a pretty good impression with them not just forgetting about us as soon as they go overseas.
S: I’ll tell you one thing man. I am so looking forward to EVO Japan. Just to see them on their home turf.
E: It’s just going to be interesting though. EVO seems to be still going with Super Street Fighter  and not Arcade [Edition]. So if we do go to Japan, we’re going to be playing that. And if we’ve only been playing Arcade Edition the whole time, it’s going to be very interesting.
S: So out of the three (guests) who was your favourite.
E: Ah. It’s too hard to pick. I’m not going to pick between them.
M: So, favourite moment of the guests.
E: I hate Tokido the most, though. He knows it. Me and him are rivals.
M: So you hate Tokido the most.
E: Yeah he knows it man. He’s fuckin’ J.R. Tokido.
Yeah no, it’s too hard to pick between them. Each one had their own special personality. Let’s say that.
M: “Special” personality.
S: I think Mutton pointed out, when we walking back from the airport after we picked up Gamerbee, he basically like pointed at Tokido and said; he’s the scholar. Mago like’s the…
M: The more streetwise dude.
S: And then you have like Gamerbee…what was Gamerbee?
M: I have no idea what was Gamerbee.
S: The wise old man.
E: Don’t call him an old man, he gets upset.
M: Gamerbee is the dirty old man.
E: Dirty old man, he’s fuckin’…what’s his name from Dragonball Z. Master Roshi. I’m gonna call fuckin’ Gamerbee Master Roshi now.
S: Yeah explain to people why you call him Gamerfish.
E: Because he’s got a memory of a fucking goldfish! He doesn’t remember shit!
I’m surprised if he even remembers who’s talking now.
What’s Shadowloo Showdown? I don’t even know. That’s why he’s known as Gamerfish now.
S: He came, he saw, he conquered. He forgot.
E: And he forgot everything.
M: So what about Mago? You call him Mago Monkey right?
E: Oh, Monkey Mago. Because of the Zoo. He’s imitating all the monkeys in the Zoo, man. You should see some of the pictures we have. But then I found out, while listening to your interview, that he used to called Ago. So I’ll just call him Ago now. I like Ago. Sounds cool. A bit more fierce than Mago.
M: Reminds me of Iago (actually it is Iolaus), is it that sidekick of Hercules?
And Tokido will always be known as J.R. Tokido. And rival/business partner. /guy I know.
S: Awesome player I know.
E: He’s alright. He’s not bad.
M: What are your plans for next year’s Shadowloo Showdown?
E: ah, we got a lot of plans. First things first, try to make up some of the finances we lost because of the venue and the T-shirt guy kind of screwed us in the face. I don’t want to go into it, but if it wasn’t for that…the whole event was successful. Financially wise, it could have been better. Hopefully we won’t make the same mistakes next year, that’s the first step.
And the other hard part is gonna be wondering who we’re gonna invite. ‘Cos I wanna invite the same people because they were awesome. But I also want to meet Momochi and Kindevu and all those guys. And hopefully a lot of US players who are contracted will come down on their own so we don’t have to worry about that.
And hopefully Tokido will come down on Traveling Circus’ sponsorship. We’ll see, we’ll see. We’re gonna be in talks with them. And we’re gonna be working on sponsors from now. So we can have…
S: A whole year to prepare.
E: Some awesome prizes, and maybe some prize money. We’ll see what happens. We got a lot planned. A lot of the things we wanted to do for this one that we couldn’t do, we’ll be doing it for the next one.
M: Awesome. So any last thoughts or shoutouts.
E: Shoutouts to everyone who actually came. And everyone that tuned in. And all the websites and all the people that spread the news about Shadowloo Showdown. And hopefully a lot of you guys that couldn’t make it this year will be there next year because it’s hopefully gonna blow this one out of the water.
I don’t know how we’re gonna do it, but I got some ideas. We’ll see.
S: I think we all have a few ideas.
M: How could you forget the Red Bull girls!?!?!
E: We’ll specifically call them for you next year.
M: Awesome, awesome.
S: Call them for Gamerbee next year. Returning champ!
E: Congratulations to Gamerbee, first Shadowloo Showdown champion ever. That’s something.
S: In style.
S: So today we’re gonna be doing the Gamerbee interview. This was done basically on Monday, after the Zoo trip. This was after the whole tournament. Gamerbee won it, and we did an interview with him.
As always, you can find the full transcript on Mutton’s blog. We hope you enjoy the interview!
S: This is Day 5 of Shadowloo Showdown, including Tokido’s Wednesday arrival. And we are in the Ridges’ lobby with one of our very special international guests; Mr. Gamerbee. So welcome.
Gamerbee: Hi everybody! I am Gamerbee.
1- M: Gamerbee, how did you get into fighting games?
G: When I was still young, I saw Street Fighter II for the first time. Maybe 9 or 10 [old]? Then I started to play fighting games all the time.
M: When did you get into your first tournament?
G: Oh the tournament? Actually back in Street Fighter II, I already joined [my] first tournament. It’s a small tournament, maybe just only 10 or 20 people. And the prize is a PC engine. Did you remember that?
It’s pretty alright.
M: So how old were you when that happened?
G: I think it was…fifth grade. I can’t remember, maybe [I was] 10, 11 [years old]?
M: So you’ve been playing fighting games competitively for twenty years? Wow.
G: Almost. About twenty years, yes I think.
2- M: That’s a long time. So what’s your favourite fighting game?
G: My favourite fighting game? I should say the most time I spent on fighting games is Virtua Fighter. Virtua Fighter 2 to Virtua Fighter 4 Evolution.
M: So Virtua Fighter’s your favourite fighting game. So what about your favourite non-fighting game?
G: Non-fighting game? I think…[there’s] a lot. Because I play a lot of…all kinds of games all the time. Action. Adventure. RPG. But I don’t like sport of racing [games].
M: So what’s your favourite right now?
G: Favourite right now is, besides Street Fighter 4, is League of Legends. For now.
3- M: So what is the most delicious thing that you’ve eaten in America?
G: You mean the food? Actually, it’s the Mexican food. The burritos and the tacos! They’re actually [very] good.
M: Oh! So that’s your favourite [munchies] in America. Awesome.
4- M: How are the changes in Adon’s wakeup timing in Arcade Edition or his other changes gonna affect his matchups?
G: I think it will affect the matchups, but I don’t know how much it will affect me. I will need to test it. And I will see how it goes.
M: If it’s too bad, will you consider switching your main in Arcade Edition?
G: Yes I will.
M: So what’s a likely candidate for your new main?
G: You mean what character I will [switch to]? I guess, because I kind of like characters who can rush[down]. So I was trying to use Dudley. But Dudley in this [game] is no good.
Maybe I will try Dudley again, or maybe the new characters like Yun or Yang.
M: Oh okay. Very interesting.
5- M: What is in your opinion, Adon’s worst matchups?
G: I think the pretty worst [matchup] I have had for now, is Tokido’s Akuma. But the Akuma matchup is not so hard for me. But since apparently he know a lot of things [about the match], it’s very hard to defeat or [defend]. I can block his option select setups…[but it’s] hard. He is the hardest matchup for me.
M: Do you think that’s going to just get harder in Arcade Edition? Because of the wakeup time?
G: Maybe. But I don’t know. Maybe they will do more fixes.
Because sometimes just seeing the data [is not enough]. Sometimes [there may be things] you can’t foresee.
6- M: So how strong are the players back in Taiwan? Are there any good players in Taiwan that you would like to talk about?
G: Yes, there are a few very good players in Taiwan. Like first, GiPie is the best Fuerte in Taiwan. He’s pretty good.
He’s almost caught up to Japanese level. He’s the best Fuerte I’ve even seen beside Japanese…
G: I should say TKD or Japanese players. And there’s a Dictator player called 藍弟 (Lan Di) lsy9983. He’s pretty good. Because I keep losing to him all the time. It’s a bad matchup for Adon. And there’s another one called RB. RB is the man who went to EVO with me. He used Rufus and switched to Guy right now. He’s pretty good. He got talent but he’s too young, 21. So he cannot focus on the game.
That’s his problem. He got talent…
M: He’s got talent, just needs focus.
G: And one more; Zalk. He uses Fei Long. He help me practice the Fei Long matchup a lot.
M: So because of him, you can beat Mago today.
G: I think so.
M: Nice! So all you guys play online with the Japanese players?
7- So what salty words or swearing did Mike Ross teach you?
G: Mike Ross? He taught me one word: say Ass. ASSSSS! But I don’t really know why they use this word.
M: Because Mike Ross has a nice ass. So that’s why he says it.
G: (Laughs.) I see. Okay, I will tell him that. Because you got a nice ass.
M: Yes, yes. So what about in Australia? Have you learned any Australian slang or idioms?
G: It’s pretty hard! Because I don’t know…Fimbles? Fimbles is pretty good.
7- S: What are you more proud or; your performance at EVO, or your performance at Season’s Beatings?
M: Or your performance at Shadowloo Showdown where you beat Tokido and Mago?
G: I think the performance I have made should start at EVO. I was [then] a nobody to be[come] somebody. In that moment I think it [was] pretty important for me. Even I [can] make it so far for now, if not [for my performance] at EVO, I won’t be here. That’s why.
M: It’s your starting point, so it’s the most important for you.
8- S: You said that one big reason that you got so good at the game is because you played the top Japanese players online a lot. With the Arcade Edition coming out, and the Japanese players will most likely return to the arcades, do you think this will be a problem?
G: It will be [a] problem. But I dunno how much [of a] problem it will be. Because if the home video (console) version is released six months later, then everybody besides Japan will fall behind I think.
But before the home video (console version) is released, I think the tournaments in every country will still be Super SF4. So the tournament won’t be affected so much before the home video release, but after it is released, I think Japanese player will take over everything.
S: I think so too.
G: That’s reasonable, I mean the Japanese players taking over is very reasonable.
S: Do you think because America’s tournaments are so console focussed, do you think that we’re gonna lose a lot of players from the community? Because they’re playing an outdated version of the game?
G: I think it will. Because outside of Japan, if you don’t have the arcade. You depend on the [console] game. Everybody wants to play the newest game right?
So if I cannot play Arcade Edition and there’s no tournaments inviting me to it, I’ll probably just stop it.
G: That’s why.
M: That’s sad to hear.
S: I think we will lose in general, a lot of people, and a lot of casual people. It depends on when the home console version comes out. I think if it comes out in April next year (Gamerbee inhales sharply), I think we’ll be okay…Because Marvel will be out as well. There’ll be other competitive games coming out. So Street Fighter might take a sort of a backstep while Marvel sort of becomes bigger.
Then when Street Fighter comes back…
G: It might be the…if Marvel is doing well. If it is balanced, and it’s interesting, it’s good enough…Because you know, Americans love Marvel so much. So if Marvel releases first, it might take over Street Fighter 4’s place in America.
I think it’s bad for Street Fighter 4. For internationally, for every country.
9- S: With a lot of the new fighting games coming out, like Street Fighter x Tekken, Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Mortal Kombat. Are you excited to play any of these games?
G: I was switching [between] fighting games like Virtua Fighter Street Fighter and Tekken. Actually after Virtua Fighter 4: Evolution I switched to Tekken because I could [any Virtua Fighter in arcades]. So I played Tekken a lot. But until Street Fighter 4 home video version released, I started [playing it].
And it’s pretty good, so I can play at home and get better. So let’s say I play Street Fighter 4 right now? But I think Tekken is good. And Marvel maybe is good idea for the pros, it’s gonna be huge race [to the top].
10- S: Can you rank the following: we have Taiwanese bubble tea, American bubble tea, and Melbourne bubble tea. Which one do you think is the best?
M: So do you like that or?
G: I like it not too sweet.
10- S: So what do you think are your strengths and weaknesses are as a player?
G: As a player, my strengths are…I’m not from Japan. I’m from Taiwan, a small island. We don’t have much players. I try very, very hard and think a lot. More than Japanese, and maybe USA? So I can go outside from Taiwan, just myself, alone. It’s my strong…
S: So basically you’re hungry. To improve and to be the best.
G: (Yeah. But the weaknesses…I think. I don’t have a good place to practice. Unlike Japan, it is easy to find a good player to practice. But after I came from Taiwan, I get almost every resource in Taiwan, because the competition is not hard here, it didn’t spread to other Taiwanese players. But Japanese players, besides Daigo, their competition is getting harder and harder, so I got lucky even despite the less competition in Taiwan, and the weakness being not much players to practice with to get better. (Gamerbee edit.) But for playing I think it’s hard to find good training partners.
M: What about your playstyle. Your game. What are you trying to improve on right now?
G: I think I got lucky. Because Adon fits my playstyle. I don’t need too much technique or skill, but if you can move faster and think faster, it’s pretty easy to use and do pretty well. But when new version is released, I might not be able to do as good as now.
11- M: So who are your mentors or teachers when coming up in the fighting game scene?
G: You mean who is my mentor? I think [there are] a lot of people. Because I saw…the focus. Like Daigo or Mago. They practice like over ten hours a day. I never did that!
But I think, when I went to the U.S.A. I saw players that are not the best, but they have confidence. I think confidence is a good thing to learn. So I learn that everybody’s good.
M: So long as you have confidence in yourself.
G: I guess. If you can get a very big tournament, top 8 or top 5? When you join the next tournament, you will be more calm.
12- M: What do you do for a living?
G: I was a hotel manager.
M: Are you still doing that?
G: No. I quit my job before Ohio, Season’s Beatings. Because I go to U.S.A. for a month I could not take such a long period of leave.
M: So now you’re just playing Street Fighter full-time? No other jobs?
G: Yeah, because this is the time I can invited to a lot of countries. So I played for twenty years -fighting games. So I think this is my chance. I think I will use the one year or half year to enjoy this right now.
I think it will stop for me, maybe in half a year or one year. Then I will try to get back to my [old] lifestyle again.
S: Oh okay. So you’re going to France next week?
12- M: So what are your thoughts on sponsorship of Street Fighter players? Do you think fighting games can become as successful as Starcraft 2 in Korea?
G: I think not [there won’t be] so much higher prizes. But if you do it for a living, maybe.
S: So for travelling and things, it’s okay, but for a full-time job, it’s not really possible?
G: It’s not so…As you see the prize in SF4 is not so good. You cannot win just one tournament and live for six months.
S: Have you approached by any sponsors?
G: I don’t have a sponsor right now. Because I think everybody’s still looking. Because first of all, I’m not from Japan. And two, I’ve not been famous internationally for a long time. So, I might be not a stable [bet]. So I don’t have a sponsorship.
S: But Filipino Champ has a sponsorship but long has he…
G: But U.S.A. is different. Because they live in the U.S.A. and the tournaments…
S: And travelling within the U.S. is much cheaper.
13- M: So what do you like to do in your spare time, other than playing Street Fighter?
G: I still like to play games, but I like to hang out with my friends. Most of my good friends are from [playing] games. We go for movies, karaoke, and sometimes we play League of Legends or sometimes chat on Messenger. It’s good enough.
14- M: How are you able to speak such fluent Japanese? I also noticed that when you first went to America you required a English translator? But after you spent some time after Season’s Beatings you were able to speak English fluently after that. How did you learn English in three weeks?
G: I was playing some English games since I was young. But I don’t have a chance to speak it. I have some words in my mind but I’m not good at listening or speaking it. But I like to watch movies a lot, so I will try to learn the accent or speech. And when I got to the U.S.A., people around me were speaking English so I can learn from them too. And if I can understand what the words that were said, maybe only one word, I can guess the main…
M: The sentence.
G: Yeah. So I got better because I stayed in the U.S. for a month.
M: Yeah your English has improved so much. So what about your Japanese. How come you are able to speak such fluent Japanese?
G: When I was in high school, I took 3 years of Japanese [classes]. But it’s not good enough. After I got a hotel job, it’s almost [all] Japanese customers in the hotel. I got three years to practice.
I almost speak Japanese everyday. So it’s pretty good training.
S: Because you and Mago seem to…communicate with not too many problems.
M: Because of the hotel job, are there any other languages that you can speak?
G: Nope. Not so far. I was thinking about [learning] Korean. But for now, I think that English will be more important for me.
15- M: So how do you deal with defeat?
G: When I was young, I cannot stand defeat. Because I think victory in tournament is so important. But because I’m over thirty years now, I was almost giving up. I won’t be able to play tournaments too huge [for much longer]. But after I got top 8 at EVO, the target, the goal? I already met it. The rest of it…the only thing I can do more? Will start some other day.
I can lose, I can win. If I win right now, I just enjoy [it] right now. But if I lose, I [feel] the same. Because I already think it’s over.
M: Oh I see. That’s a good way to think about it.
16-M: So what are your thoughts on your performance in Shadowloo Showdown. What were your thoughts when you went to the finals and faced Mago and Tokido. What did you think when Tokido kept doing Raging Demons against your Jaguar kicks.
S: Because you seemed very calm. Like nothing really affected you.
For example, Tokido was very animated. But you were very calm.
G: I try to be calm in tournaments. I think that thinking [while you play] is the only way to win. You cannot stop thinking. Even if you know this is a bad matchup, or this man’s too good for you. Even when everything’s wrong with you.
But you still have to give everything for it. So I will keep thinking, keep thinking, keep thinking, keep thinking. Is there any chance I can do [something]? It may be a little [thing]. Maybe my hands are just not fast enough. Or maybe my combos…[I] did something wrong.
But at least you know why. It also made think; you [had] a chance. You just didn’t catch it. But if you catch this chance, maybe next time you win.
So before I played with Mago and Tokido, I was playing with them on the internet. I was losing.
I was losing a lot!
But I still keep thinking [of] a way that I can beat them. Even just one round. Or two rounds. I just do my best. But after the tournament, I tried so hard. And you know, I got lucky.
Mago missed two Super combos.
And Tokido, he saw he got me. So he used the EX air fireball. I got a little lucky. But still, it was because I didn’t give up.
M: And you stayed calm.
S: Especially with the EX air fireballs, I was telling one of the other stream guys that Gamerbee has a very strong mental game. Because for some players when something bad luck happens, they completely fall apart because they were concentrating so hard and something bad luck happens. They just go…they lose. But you just kept powering through, it didn’t affect you at all. Which is very, very important.
G: As I said before, I don’t have [much time left]. This is my moment. After this…I think my age is too old for full-time playing games. But after this, it will stop. Somehow, someday. If I get weak. Or if the game are not popular anymore. It will stop. So I just keep catching each chance I could have.
17- M: So do you have anything to say about the Australian players you faced?
G: I think Australians are very nice, and everyone enjoys themselves in the game. It’s better than in U.S.A. Because in the U.S.A. they have too much aggression, and have too much anger than here. I think in [Australia] it’s pretty good because you got Arcade Edition and you got two cities (Melbourne and Sydney) that you can have a rivalry.
Rival scene…is good.
I think if there’s a chance, just like me, even if there’s not so many players in your country. You can still try very hard. You can still think like a Japanese to prove yourself, to get better. Maybe, maybe one day you can do it.
You can go to EVO and beat Justin Wong or Daigo. Just one time. It will make you famous. And it will make you better and better.
S: Fulfil that goal.
18- M: So who do you like better: Gootecks or Mike Ross?
G: I think I like them both!
Both guys are pretty good. Funny, they’re funny.
S: We’re pretty big fans of Gootecks and Mike Ross.
M: So if you were stuck on a desert island and you had to pick one of them, who would you take?
G: I think maybe Gootecks. Gootecks is pretty funny.
19- S: Any final thoughts or shoutouts you’d like to give out?
G: The [last] thing I just said. I think the most [important] thing in fighting game is to keep pushing yourself to a better level just like any sport. Any sport star. Even if they’re very good, they’re still pushing themself to another level.
And try to find your own fun in the game. It will help you a lot.
S: I think you’re right. I think some people tend to forget that this is just a game and if you’re not having fun playing it, you probably shouldn’t play it.
S & M: Thank you very much Gamerbee!
G: Thank you.