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Gameplay & Matchmaking

Discussing MK Gameplay, Strategies, Tournaments and Online Matchmaking.
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Mick-LuciferPosted: 06/03/2011 10:29 PMStatus ::
Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

With a list of accolades that would put any 'achievement hound' to shame; Justin Wong has been world champion of some of the genre's most competitive fighting games. Having claimed titles at the highest level in games like Marvel vs Capcom 2 and Street Fighter IV, the accomplished competitor set his sights on Mortal Kombat last month, when Performance Design Products staged their first US National Tournament, in Las Vegas, Nevada!

From a field of almost two hundred kombatants fighting for a winning prize purse of $10,000 -- "Jwonggg" emerged victorious in Sin City to add his first US National Mortal Kombat Championship to the list!

Keen to speak with one of Earthrealm's chosen fighters, Mortal Kombat Online probed the Supreme Kombat Champion [pictured in mortal form, right] for his thoughts on the burgeoning MK tournament scene, and what he has observed from the revamped gameplay engine.

[MKO]: What was your first introduction to MK as a series?
[Justin Wong]: I think my first MK introduction is probably on the SNES with Mortal Kombat 2. I definitely did not know what I was doing at all at the time, and I picked Sub-Zero because my favorite color was blue.

What are some of the high and low points you've observed as the series has evolved?
I didn't think much of it when I was young at all, but ever since MK9 came out, I took it as a new game and just had to figure out the mechanics and try to use my experience in fighting games to adapt.

What do you think about the Mortal Kombat tournament scene so far?
I think its still growing and it eventually will keep getting bigger and bigger due to the offline/online community, and player awareness.

In your list of achievements, how does winning the National Tournament rank?
It is definitely a big one just because it was labeled as a National Tournament. And it just feels good to win at new games because I feel like I am doing something right.

With the MK Arcade Kollection announced [full story], do you think the MK scene can branch out?
I will always believe that UMK3 will be in tournaments just because there is still a scene for it. Maybe I will get into it especially if the MK [Arcade] Kollection is coming out. I am a sucker for fighting games and especially ones with a scene in it.

Kung Lao featured heavily in the PDP National Tournament. What do you think makes him such a popular and effective character?
He definitely was a popular character choice. I think since top players were using him, everyone else realized that he is probably the best character in the game, and he could do a lot of things that characters cannot do that easily, like anti air, for example.

Which MK9 character(s) do you expect to really take it to Kung Lao over time? Will he remain a dominant favourite?
I do think Kung Lao will stay dominant as of now and for the future. But I think a good character that can [contend] with Kung Lao is probably Shang Tsung, just because I believe that Shang is a viable character and he can turn into Kung Lao and dish out more damage than the actual Kung Lao.

What's your personal Mortal Kombat [2011] tier list?
I really don't have one just because I am a "tier whore" in the game, but judging from my experience with the scene I can say that the best chars [in my opinion] are; Kung Lao, Raiden, Ermac, Cage, Cyrax, [and] Shang [Tsung] (in the future). [...] Everyone else I do not have a good rank.


"... I believe Shang Tsung is a viable character..."

There's been a lot of talk about Cyrax' bomb trap. Do you have any good tips to add depth to Cyrax' game, or on the flipside, to combat the trap?
Well the bomb trap is [definitely] super cheap, but that is what makes him really good. I believe that Cyrax players should not just focus on the bomb trap and focus more on his ex net which takes away the opponent's meter. The best way to fight against the trap is to either get lucky with breaking the throw, or save your meter to break out of the trap and also use super armor moves, or Raiden teleport to get out of the trap.

What do you think the key differences are between MK and games like Street Fighter IV and Marvel vs Capcom?
Obviously the main difference is the block functions but MK9 and SFIV are pretty similar [in my opinion]. It's just that MK is more offensive than SSIV. You can never compare Marvel to MK9, even with the tag combos. if you want to think about that, MK9 is pretty similar to the Tekken Tag series.

What can MK learn from other fighting games and what do you think they're doing right to stand apart from the crowd? Does MK2011 successfully carve a niche in the genre?
The only thing that MK players can learn from other games are footsies. The spacing of player's moves aren't as fluid as SF players. MK players are pretty offensive, but they don't have little tricks to trick the opponent for block strings or pressure strings. I do believe that MK9 is more exciting to watch than SF games and I would like MK9 to be successful in the competitive aspect.

How do you think MK can best improve, moving forward?
I think MK9 doesn't need to nerf characters but just buff up the lower tier, under used characters. Also, the game has only been out for a month, it's way too soon to say that 'this' char is unplayable, etc. In order [for] MK to move forward, it all depends on the community, and right now MK9 has to piggyback off the SFIV/MVC3 tournaments.

Do you think MK can hang with the competition in the longterm as a tournament fighter and have the longevity of titles like Street Fighter and MVC?
I believe that if MK9 keeps getting patches, it definitely will be longterm for fighting tournaments and I will always be supporting competitive fighting games.

MK is heading to Evo in July [learn more]. Do you think you'll get to play?
I am excited for EVO overall, and I believe that MK9 will have a strong turn out at EVO. I will be participating in it of course.

Is there anyone you'd like to thank, or send a shoutout?
I want to thank Intel, SteelSeries, Monster Energy, Kingston HyperX, Six Pool Gaming, Intel Extreme Boards, and Bigfoot Networks.

You can find Justin Wong on the web at Jwonggg.com, or on Twitter, @Jwonggg. Mortal Kombat Online would like to thank Justin for his time! We've got more Q&A sessions coming soon! Get updates wherever you are by following @MK_Online!

Reptile_ZPosted: 06/03/2011 11:02 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::814
Nationality::Ireland
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

that was an awesome read, thanks Mick-Lucifer.

its cool to see one of the top competitive players in fighting games take an interest in this game, originally i thought he was just in for the money in the PDP tourny but was pleasantly surprised that he said he'd continue playing this game along with Marvel vs Capcom 3 (MvC2 being his fav game for the last 10 years).

with players like Jwongg taking MK9 seriously, the fighting game community will finally start showing the respect MK9 deserves instead of the constant bashing it recieves from other fighting game fans *cough street fighter fan boys cough*

i cant wait to see this game evolve within the next few years to see what kind of strategies top players come up with as they did with SSF4, Tekken etc.

cant wait for future tournys for some epic matchs because serioulsy, high level MK9 is entertaining to watch but to also level up my own game.

yautjaredPosted: 06/03/2011 11:18 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::2544
Nationality::New Zealand
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Very nice, Justin Wong supporting MK 2011 is a great thing, that will help A LOT to promote the gameplay of this game as a true competitive game, and increase the fan base for MK 2011.

Skarlet : Kunoichi warrior, Kodachi master, Kunai expert.
ironman357thegodPosted: 06/03/2011 11:24 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::483
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

i agree with everything he said except about all ppl need buffs because

lui's b3,2,1 combo needs to go away
nerf kanos knife and ball
nerf ermac (clearly) and sektors damage, also kung too

as for blockstrings, mk has them but its different from sf i call them unnofficials where i just find a certain chain then add a special that can set up options for me

jwong is a beast though

bad kids, bad kids, whatcha gonna do sequel doesn't know what to do when he gets straight up shited by you.
Mojo6Posted: 06/04/2011 02:15 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::5150
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Love seeing the big name pro's taking an interest in the game. Nice article Mick.

One thing though, didn't Wong's Kung Lao lose to Tom Brady's Sub-Zero in an unofficial match as Brady was banned from the tournament?

TortureLegendPosted: 06/04/2011 02:54 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::839
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

ironman357thegod Wrote:
i agree with everything he said except about all ppl need buffs because



lui's b3,2,1 combo needs to go away

nerf kanos knife and ball

nerf ermac (clearly) and sektors damage, also kung too



as for blockstrings, mk has them but its different from sf i call them unnofficials where i just find a certain chain then add a special that can set up options for me



jwong is a beast though


A typical response expected from MKO. While they're at it might ad well take Kano, Ermac, and Kung Lao out of the game completely *jack off motion*

XBLGT: Canvas of Souls Photobucket
LucaTurilliPosted: 06/04/2011 03:46 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::2785
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Reptile_Z Wrote:


with players like Jwongg taking MK9 seriously, the fighting game community will finally start showing the respect MK9 deserves instead of the constant bashing it recieves from other fighting game fans *cough street fighter fan boys cough*


Justin has supported this game since the demo came out. I really don't know where you're hearing all this "bashing" from. This game has been given incredible support, and nearly ALL the top American Street Fighter players are playing it at all the tournaments.

We have Alex Valle, Floejisan, Mike Ross, Big Marcus, Arturo Sanchez, Nerd Josh and more all playing MK9.

NephritePosted: 06/04/2011 06:29 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::3779
Nationality::Croatia
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Great read!


MK9 has really got me into watching tournament streams and offline footage as well. I've seen plenty of Justin's Kung Lao and I've seen him play Raiden recently as well, probably his back up character. Guy is amazing and I love watching him play.

I love him saying that MK9 tournament matches are more fun to watch than SFIV :p. I've seen some of those as well, enjoyed them, but MK is in my heart so that was really nice to hear.

Hopefully other characters will become more prominent in future tournaments and I'll definitely be there to watch them. I know Combofiend played with Kitana early on and I know he's a very good player, but I haven't seen him recently, hopefully he shows up again. REO has a great Kabal, Cyber Sub-Zero and Kung Lao (as his main I think). Tom Brady can rock any character, but he mostly goes for Sub-Zero.

Looking forward to future tournaments!


jpetrunakPosted: 06/04/2011 10:19 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::3472
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Fuck jwong ... He trashed MK until 10k got put in his pocket. If he would have lost that tournament he would have said the game is broken and no good.

-
ironman357thegodPosted: 06/04/2011 10:30 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::483
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

TortureLegend Wrote:
ironman357thegod Wrote:
i agree with everything he said except about all ppl need buffs because





lui's b3,2,1 combo needs to go away


nerf kanos knife and ball


nerf ermac (clearly) and sektors damage, also kung too





as for blockstrings, mk has them but its different from sf i call them unnofficials where i just find a certain chain then add a special that can set up options for me





jwong is a beast though




A typical response expected from MKO. While they're at it might ad well take Kano, Ermac, and Kung Lao out of the game completely *jack off motion*


Umm logic? MKO really is the worst

bad kids, bad kids, whatcha gonna do sequel doesn't know what to do when he gets straight up shited by you.
Spider804Posted: 06/04/2011 10:59 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::6938
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

The game is broken and no good. Nah, jk.
Quite frankly, I give a shit what J Wong thinks, doesn't mean I'll deny that he's got mad skills, and if him saying good stuff about MK will get more people to play it, then really, what's the BFP.

Reptile_ZPosted: 06/04/2011 01:04 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::814
Nationality::Ireland
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

LucaTurilli :- "Justin has supported this game since the demo came out. I really don't know where you're hearing all this "bashing" from. This game has been given incredible support, and nearly ALL the top American Street Fighter players are playing it at all the tournaments.

We have Alex Valle, Floejisan, Mike Ross, Big Marcus, Arturo Sanchez, Nerd Josh and more all playing MK9"


when i said "Street Fighter Fan boys" i meant the street fighter players that appear on MK streams just to bash it or on street fighter fan sites, i didnt mean top players such as Mike Ross, Floe, Big Marcus etc. in the end the fighting game community is ONE community so i think its awesome to see big names enjoy the game.

you have no idea how many times ive heard or read about how "MK has no hype due to combo breakers", "Street Fighter has mind games while MK is just spamming" etc

Spider804Posted: 06/04/2011 01:08 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::6938
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Damn right they have mind games, they haven't changed at all in 20 years.
Just look at Ryu. jk

NephritePosted: 06/04/2011 03:48 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::3779
Nationality::Croatia
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Reptile_Z Wrote:
when i said "Street Fighter Fan boys" i meant the street fighter players that appear on MK streams just to bash it or on street fighter fan sites, i didnt mean top players such as Mike Ross, Floe, Big Marcus etc. in the end the fighting game community is ONE community so i think its awesome to see big names enjoy the game.



you have no idea how many times ive heard or read about how "MK has no hype due to combo breakers", "Street Fighter has mind games while MK is just spamming" etc



To be honest, those kind of people are troll-people and you'll find them everywhere, not just among SF fanboys/girls, but in any other community as well. Just look at some of the threads where SF has been mentioned here at MKO, every third or fourth user who posted would talk mindless troll $hit about SF. Just because they have a troll soul.

Spoilers: (Highlight to reveal)
One day Shang Tsung will find them all. One day...


Generally, I think the reception for the new MK has been really positive among the high-level players and all the other non-troll people from various other communities.


SubMan799Posted: 06/04/2011 04:58 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::15224
Nationality::Vatican City
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Great interview. $10,000....goddamn

mkdfanPosted: 06/04/2011 07:35 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::8536
Nationality::England
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Congrats to him!

OptimusGrimePosted: 06/04/2011 08:22 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::1397
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Justin Wong is asian?

TemperaryUserNamePosted: 06/04/2011 09:23 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::6084
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Great stuff. Justin Wong has done a lot of great things for the communities. I smiled very brightly when I saw his name on the MKO news page.

New sig on the way
DMAN3431Posted: 06/05/2011 12:32 AMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::44
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

wow how does this guy not like Scorpion. i love Scorpion. hes one of the best fighters on here.

SaddamPosted: 06/06/2011 03:04 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::195
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

i think im a top Scorp and i cant do damage like cyrax lui kang and ermac

_JRF_Posted: 06/06/2011 04:31 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::9919
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

Justin has an OK Kung Lao. If you've seen Perfect Legend play,...his Lao is god-like. I also think TomBrady is an overall better player and it sucks he couldnt enter.

VertigoPrincePosted: 06/06/2011 05:32 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::132
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

_JRF_ Wrote:
Justin has an OK Kung Lao. If you've seen Perfect Legend play,...his Lao is god-like. I also think TomBrady is an overall better player and it sucks he couldnt enter.

I agree. PerfectLengend's Kung Lao pwns all.

TemperaryUserNamePosted: 06/06/2011 08:51 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::6084
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

_JRF_ Wrote:
Justin has an OK Kung Lao. If you've seen Perfect Legend play,...his Lao is god-like. I also think TomBrady is an overall better player and it sucks he couldnt enter.

Yet Justin beat Perfect in the PDP tournament. Sure, Legend got him back later on during the Resurrection tournament, but you can't call the third-place contender's Kung Lao "okay."

New sig on the way
PaletteSwappedPosted: 06/06/2011 11:09 PMStatus ::


Rank ::
Visits::111
Nationality::United States
RE: Mortal Spotlight: MKO Q&A with National Champion Justin Wong!

He did it for the money. Tom won the side tournament there.

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