So I've been playing more and more lately, I'm not all that good yet so I have been trying to think of ways in which to beat players who are better than me. By better i mean a combination of 2 things which are really pretty different from each other.
Faster players: Some players are simply faster than me (I'm about 120 at best), but are not better at making combos than me. Of course this is a sliding scale. some faster players are a little worse at making combos and others are much worse (at least in any given moment, we all vary depending on who we are playing at the moment) In this I tend to follow a strategy of building the 2 wide about 3/4 high on the screen then comboing and returning garbage effectively and it works quite well a lot of the time. I can usually beat players who are 20 bpm faster than me so long as they are not also equal on comboing.
Better combo and Faster: this is where its hard, and of course i rarely win but i sometimes can if i do things just right. I usually build about half high and combo then need to rely on returning garbage to create the best combos i can. This only works against people who are reasonably within my realm. I basically never win against players who are faster, and can downstack intelligently AND can do the spins, which just widens the breadth of options for downstacking. but what i can do using this idea is get a higher place in a room full of people all of whom who are much better than me.
i guess i don't really know what I'm saying so its more a question than a real strategy. But how do you all play differently when you play against people who are better than you? Do you have strategies that work?
I can tell this will be a fun thread; I do find sometimes when playing in a room full of people that are generally faster then me its best to mitigate damages from the first combo blast rather then going for a high combo right away. Which means usually you can get away with a 7 or 8 combo at first, and hopefully work with a lower board then some of the consistently faster opponents, who sometimes go for the high combo right of the bat, putting the value of the combo over stack stability.
Also , in starting your combo with a lower stable stack against faster opponents, if you start your combo after they start theirs, you’ll usually end up with some garbage to clear which will (if you play your cards right) help yield an extra line or 2 in your combo. If memory serves me correctly it only takes 1 line to block a single line sent, so if you start your combo a moment after you start receiving lines you should end up sending more lines then an opponent with an equal combo. This probably isnt viable against a room full of skilled players that are blasting you with the first combo, but in a one on one situation it is definitely food for thought.
During this tournament (http://www.twitch.tv/harddrop/b/319564594) at about 5.10 there’s a good example of the waiting strategy being implemented.
Also in reading a bit further about combos the longer the round goes on, the more lines that are sent for the same combo, another reason to mitigate damages, and strike while the irons hot.
If any of this is factually wrong someone please correct me, I need all the help I can get :)
Unfortunately you're not quite right. Yes, the amount of sent lines gets higher the longer the game goes on. But it depends on YOUR lines sent. Which means, if you start with a high combo, you already have a slight advantage. Blocking the incoming lines does NOT count as sent lines.
However, in rooms with a lot of people, you can get to a good rank with a defensive strategy. But I think you will rarely be able to win (only if the other better players screw up). Because there are people who send tons of lines, and the amount increases for them over time - they just send more and more...
I think making your combo skills to an advantage is a good strategy. If the room is quite full, the lines sent are distributed a bit more and big starting combos won't hurt you as much. Therefore, you should be able to play a bit more risky at the beginning. Try to get a combo as big as possible, it will boost your #lines sent later on. Afterwards, stay defensive until you have some time to stack up again. Don't stack too high after the first combo - start your combo when you receive your first line. If your first combo is only blocking and not sending anything, you're usually in a disadvantage.
I usually play with the following rules:
- Start with a big combo (Depending on how good the other players starting combos are, wait for them to send first. But i prefer to start mine before them.)
- Clear garbage until I have no lines incoming
- Stack up until ~4 pending lines
- Start comboing again
Another thing to consider: the amount of time for your combo depends on how many lines you cleared with your first (to a certain extent 2nd) piece of the combo. So even when downstacking garbage it's really good to pause after a combo and try to at least clear 2 lines at once. You can do 8+ combos while downstacking. Of course it's easier if you are a faster player, but I think those things should be considered.
I'm so frustrated with this game because I don't know how to win consistently.
that moment when you are usually-dead-but-now-find-yourself-still-alive...ATTACK!
somebody fucked up. don't be defensive/passive and give them a chance to recover.