After looking at how to properly utilize projectiles on the last episode, Genex|Frabisaur examines another concept he feels is overlooked by players learning fighting games: the proper mentality for combos. Feeling that the beginner’s combo mentality is “only half correct,” Frabisaur looks to answer the questions of “How should I practice my combos?” and “What should the goal of my practice be?” We’ve all been there. You rush home from the store, fresh off of a brand-new fighting game purchase, pop it in, and proceed to hit up the Trial and Tutorial Modes–if available–to start learning basic combos for your character(s) of choice. Or you look them up online or in a strategy guide, before hitting the lab to meticulously grind them out, all for the sweet dose of satisfaction you get by landing them against another human opponent.
Obviously, combos are an exercise in repetition and building muscle memory. The two methods Frabisaur proposes for practicing them are either working to hit a combo a certain amount of times, and perhaps even on a certain side of the screen, or practicing a sequence until it’s impossible for you to drop it–which he recommends you aim for, particularly if you have a training partner to do it alongside.
After practicing 2-3 basic combos, Frabisaur advises you to move into “mindless mastery,” the point to where you don’t even have to think about the combo anymore once the first hit lands, as you’re landing it every time from built-up muscle memory, similar to a musician playing an instrument. Doing this will lead you into the most important part of combos: context, which he demonstrates with Nash.
Combos need to be mastered to the point that you can manipulate them at will, so that once you start your combo, you can shut off your focus on it, quickly scan the scenario, think of the context you’re in and the one you want to create on the next offensive opportunity, and then end your combo appropriately.
Don’t forget to tune into the first episode of The Fighter’s Dojo Live this Thursday, where Frabisaur will host a weekly open lobby for beginners, providing coaching and application opportunities against solid players of similar skill. Separate sessions will be held for Silver ranks and below (7:30 PM to 9:30 PM ET/4:30 PM to 6:30 PM PT), as well as Platinum to Gold (9:45 PM to 11:45 PM ET/6:45 PM to 8:45 PM PT) at http://www.twitch.tv/frabisaur. You can also follow him on Twitter for more details.