Could New FGC Rule Prove To Be A Lose-Lose?

[dropcap style=”4″ text=”In”]an article posted on a couple of days ago, a clear message was sent to players who might be throwing matches and not putting in their 110%. You get caught and you are DQ’ed. In a time in which the FGC is growing both in membership and viewership, this seems like a way to make sure everyone involved is putting their best foot forward and representing the community to the best of its ability. After some hearing some thoughts from members of the community and some reflection, here is why I think this rule might need some more time in the oven.

The article here states that:


Let’s dig a little deeper into this and ask some of the important questions.

  • What actually constitutes collusion?
  • Who gets to determine those rules? How will you get to enforce the language of the law versus the real world execution?
  • Would a governing body be created? Would you need Referees at every tournament?
  • Many players coach each other pre/post match, would that be considered collusion as well?

There are tons of other questions that can arise from such a broad rule. What seemingly stemmed from two competitors not using their “best teams” in Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 has turned into a possible problem for the organizers and the community overall. It leaves the players in a position in which they’ll either have to give up many of the strategic mindgames (counterpicking, using new tech or just messing with an opponent’s head) for the sake of reinforcing the idea that they are giving their all, or they will be forced to only play their main character teams for fear of being disqualified.The Tournament Operators (TO’s) on the other hand will have to implement massive rule changes to their tourney’s that might be more trouble than they are worth. Would they have to implement a rule in which players would have to tell the TO what team they would be using from the beginning? Would they be able to change their team mid tournament? What if players saw a flaw in an opponent’s game but used a character that many people didn’t consider top-tier like Justin Wong did with his Storm this past Evo? Could they lose based on lack of “Competitive Spirit”?

The number of scenarios that complicate this subject is mind-bogglingly huge and this is just the tip of the iceberg. To me, it feels like a possibly unnecessary overreach that might alienate many of the FGC’s top tier talent. There are already a couple of top players who have expressed both disappointment in the rule and grievances with some of the standards and practices they’ve experienced during tournaments over the years.

I personally can see valid complaints from both sides of the fence. TO’s and sponsors, I’m sure, dole out lots of funds to both run and promote these events, so lackluster performances can lead to a loss of both viewership and community interest. You’ve put together a great show, spent the money on a space and equipment just to have folks “tank” in the finals. That can’t be a good feeling. On the other hand the players are your and the community’s lifeblood. Without them your tournament and scene may suffer (at least from gaining a mainstream foothold). If you alienate enough of them with unquantifiable rules you might lose more than you gain.

Honestly, unless TO’s can come up with specific guidelines in this realm it will prove to be a lose-lose situation for everyone involved. The burden of proof might be too high.

I do think that if representatives from both sides of the situation can come together and iron some things out, there can be some standardization that can result in everyone being happy. That consensus might prove to be the result of what started out as a possible breaking of the fighting game honor code. If that comes to pass I think players, operators, and fans will all reap the benefits.

Kahlief Adams

Kahlief was born and raised in the Bronx, New York. As an avid technophile and lover of all things video games. He set his career path in the direction of a life making games until he found out his arch nemesis, “Math,” had other plans in store. So instead of making the next Tetris he found himself writing and talking about games on his website The Spawn Point Blog and Spawn On Me. Check out what I'm blabbering about over @kahjahkins on Twitter. PSN = KAHJAH1 XBL=KAHJAHKINS

  • This has always been a very important topic. I’ve streamed so many tournaments in my past and I’ve seen so many players throw their matches to split the pot. This is a very old trick. This kind of acts may cause the community to not be taken seriously. The video game community is a multi-billion dollar industry, These self fish act’s hurts everyone. Good job on bringing this topic to the surface.

    August 8, 2013 at 9:18 am

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