A few of you might remember my series of stick builder interviews from a while back. Issue number 4, the final issue of this series, is finally available right here on SRK. What I’m going to do for a second series is still under wraps for now.
1. Obligatory introductory, who are you and what do you do?
Aaron “Souji5” of Soujistiks.com a wood fabrication business specializing in custom arcade sticks and enclosures.
2. How did you get started as a stick builder?
I’ve always been a tinkerer when it comes to electronics, and fighting games are pretty much all I play so I initally stumbled upon the hobby while in the market for a new fightstick.
Outside of the old MAS sticks I’d never really given much thought to custom sticks; however after having found the SRK arcade stick thread (gotta love Tech Talk) that changed and it really inspired me to give it a go. Seeing the work put out by the top builders at the time really lit the match, so I went to work on my first arcade stick. After completing it and several others for a few friends it was suggested that I open a small customs shop.
3. With all the guys and gals now doing customs out there, what would you say separates yours from the rest?
Craftsmanship, and originality. From the 70’s carpet top stick to hand carved voodoo stick, I’d like to think there is an offbeat charm to each of the customs offered by soujistiks.
4. Out of all the sticks you’ve made, which one would you call your best work?
While I may have a favorite build or two I don’t know that I have a stick that I would call my best as all of the customs I’ve built were a representation of my personal best at that time.
5. Have you ever completed any sticks that, on hindsight you wish you could have done differently?
Yes, and that’s part of what makes the job interesting.
With every build you strive to go a bit further than the last custom, so you end up in constant competition with yourself trying how well you have incorporated those changes in
to your customs.
6. Future plans?
Tons! Custom wood balltops, themed enclosures and a few more I’m not quite ready to tip my hat about yet, there’s always something going on in the shop.
7. What would your dream custom stick be?
An ebony and zebrawood optical stick
8. Any advice for those who wish to start building their own customs.
Build what you like, and don’t be afraid to deviate from what’s poplar at the time (you may just end up setting the new trend in customs).
1. Japanese or American?
2. Favorite cabinet design?
The Sega Lindbergh
3. Favorite StreetFighter game?
4. 8 or 6?
6 all day!
5. If you had to choose from one SRK Tech Talk regular to have as your heterosexual life partner, who would it be?
6. Bats or balls?
7. Beer + soldering iron =?
Solving the world’s modding problems one gulp at a time.