The last two weeks have been kind of a roller coaster from positive to negative. I’ve been grinding out games of both Dota and Street Fighter on stream, and with varying degrees of success.
Last night I started off the stream in a bad place, as I was playing Dota and quickly fed two kills in my lane. The game seemed unwinnable, and despite the classic “Dota is always winnable, especially when the other team makes a mistake,” it quickly turned into a situation where that wasn’t true.
Later, I had marked a position to play and picked first, which is usually an indicator that other people will have to adapt around you; in my head, if you have the initiative to let your team know as early as possible (especially if they won’t pick themselves), it’s reasonable to assume that it will all balance out.
It didn’t, and again left me in a really tilted situation. Our last pick picked something for my position after not talking the entire pre-game, and insisted he was either going to take the role or hold the game hostage by putting two people where only one can thrive. I hate when this happens because, again, it’s a negotiating with terrorists situation; you feel like you’re rewarding someone else’s desire to be a dick by capitulating, but at the same time it’s better than 45 minutes of pure pain.
This kind of problem is what discourages me sometimes, mostly because it favors that disruptor so much: I could just as easily hold that game hostage from someone else, as wasting everyone’s time in a definite loss is more painful than just giving the idiot what they want. Essentially, the rule of “be adaptable in order to win” only applies to the people not willing to destroy their teammates’ experience when they don’t get what they want.
And I’m not going to do that, because let’s be real, that 45 minutes of pain and the reports entailed with it probably isn’t worth the time.
Obviously this is a bit different in Street Fighter, but getting my new stick meant a period of adjustment.
I was mostly flustered getting used to it because I had spent a lot of time with another stick that was a bit more forgiving in how imprecise it was. It led me to develop bad habits and not think carefully about what I was doing, which meant when I finally used some good hardware it meant a period of adjustment.
Coupling that with a relatively lackluster streak of Dota it was easy to feel that I wasn’t good at anything, despite knowing why things weren’t working, and what I needed to work on. This is like, the crux of what I’m trying to work on: minimizing the dwelling that I do on weird times and weird moods.
Maybe that’s just “that thing” that I have to work on a little bit more than other people. Sometimes people struggle with execution more than others and need to make up for it, and mentality (or well, resiliency) seems to be mine.
Matt Demers writes about video games, culture and the Internet. You can find him on Twitter and watch him stream on Twitch. Subscribe to his e-mail newsletter to get a weekly digest of the new things he posts.