DS: Do you have any match-ups that you particularly dread facing in Mortal Kombat?
Perfect Legend: There are no match ups that I dread or fear in Mortal Kombat 9.The only thing that concerns me is inexperience with new technology. That puts me in a situation to having to learn the match up right then and there. If I’m not at the top of my game then I’m in danger.
DS: What do you think makes Mortal Kombat special in the FGC, compared with other games like the Capcom fighters?
Perfect Legend: Mortal Kombat was the franchise that held up next to Street Fighter back in the days and rightfully so. The game has come a long way to take its place next to Street Fighter as an alternative franchise. The characters, their moves and their controls are all unique and do not follow the traditional Street Fighter engine. In comparison to the other games, nothing can compare to Mortal Kombat’s character design and story.
It is in my opinion that MK is by far the best in the genre.
DS: Would you say that you have any major rivalries with any players?
Perfect Legend: To be honest with you, I don’t have any rivalries. Though I have lost to a few people: my teammate Tom Brady, the People's Champion CD Jr., Reo who is widely considered the best in terms of the entire Mortal Kombat franchise, Curbo, a rookie with alot of talent, Random’s in Denzel but at the end of the day, I am still the Two Time Defending World Evo Champion in Mortal Kombat. Ed Boon said it best.
Who better than to know who's the best than the creator of Mortal Kombat?
DS: What is your favorite way of discovering new techniques to use in competitive play?
Perfect Legend: I like to use every tool my character has. If it is move, I want to know what it is for, what are the frames on it, plus or minus on, block, whiff or hit. From there I can start to engineer what to use itfor. This is standard though throughout most fighting games and it is a system that most of us use in the Empire, especially the Gods Arc, which is EMP’s HQ in New York.
DS: In your opinion, why does the FGC have a problem with the eSports movement?
Perfect Legend: To be honest I think they just fear what they cannot understand. A lot of gamers are not educated when it comes to business. They hear about these corporations that have all this money that they want to balloon into the scene but cannot understand why. Naturally they become wary of that and that anxiety turns to fear which they then react accordingly by speaking out against it.
I welcome eSports with open arms. I always thought this was what we were playing for. When you take eSports seriously, the first thing you do is try to learn as much as you can about the scene and the nature to it. I’ve learned in EMP which is a part of my development in terms of education that competitive gaming is really the “Umbrella” that houses eSports. It is but one of many forms of competitive gaming throughout many different genres of gaming which have multiple institutions that each houses their own circuit, league, community etc.
If only the FGC as a whole could comprehend this, our scene would evolve quicker than what it is doing now. Despite the slow growth it is good to know that nothing will stop eSports from entering the competitive gaming scene of Fighting Games. We’ll all have to just adapt to the changing environment and realize that change is for the good.
DS: What do you think the FGC has to do to stack up with other eSports titles like League of Legends or StarCraft II?
Perfect Legend: I don’t think there is much that we can do as gamers other than support the scene by showing up and participating. I think that is in the hands of the publishers, producers, designers, league owners, administrators etc. In a word…the “Suits”. In the end they are going to be the ones that set up the infrastructure that we’ll be involved with. So far organizations like MLG are making big plans for the future of professional gamers and they are doing a great job so far. Other entities will follow suit like IPL with their games and the competition between all these leagues will breed good business which in turn will inflate the money being made so that it can trickle down to us… the gamers.
DS: What advice would you give prospective players looking to compete and get known in the FGC?
Perfect Legend: Read this article very carefully and study the answers I wrote. Itook the time to really think about the best way to write these answers out hoping that it will be informative to its readers. Don’t just play aimlessly, create long terms goals and do more than just competing.
DS: Do you have any shoutouts or anything you’d like to say to your fans?
Perfect Legend: I would like to thank my parent gaming organization Empire Arcadia for everything that it has done for me. I would like to also give thanks to our newly acquired US Sponsor Duxter which you can find athttp://duxter.com/r/2203 and finally I would like to thank our International Caribbean Sponsor out in St. Maarten, The Video X Games (VXG) please visit them for more information about VXG 2013 at http://www.thevideoxgames.com/
Dustin Steiner is GameZone's eSports Correspondent! Follow him on Twitter @VGHC_Deitis and check out Video Gaming Hard Corps, where he is a local tournament organizer for the S. FL. Fighting Game Community.
Carl "PerfectLegend" White is arguably the best Mortal Kombat player in the world, after winning Evo in MK for the past two years. This isn't his only achievement either, as he's also won an Evo Championship in Dead or Alive 4 in 2006. Check out what he had to say to us as he heads into MLG Raleigh this weekend.
Dustin Steiner: How did you get involved in the FGC, specifically with playing Mortal Kombat competitively?
Carl “Perfect Legend” White: I got involved in the Fighting Game Community because I felt thatI could compete with the best players in the world. I wanted to experience fighting them and proving to myself that I could win a world championship.
After winning my first championship which was Dead or Alive 4 at Evolution 2006 the game slowly faded away in the competitive scene; both in the community and in the leagues. It wasn’t until 2011 when Mortal Kombat came out that I decided that I found a game that I liked in which I could rise to the top again.
My teammate MK Tom Brady who is also in Empire Arcadia helped me to understand the game. It wasn’t long before I got the hang of it on my own and from there I took the game by storm, winning two Evo World Championships back to back.
DS: How has working with your team Empire Arcadia (or EMP) helped you as a competitive player?
Perfect Legend: EMP is a development organization in gaming. It focuses on helping gamers to understand not only their value but how to market themselves.
Knowing how the industry of competitive gaming works and how you as a gamer can work in its system. This is from how we conduct our interviews; like the one I’m doing now, to how we conduct ourselves in interviews based on how we look to what information that we give out.
Finally, the brand has been around for a very long time and the accolades it has amassed over the last decade alone helps puts you out there. EMP has done its own clothing commercial on G4TV, its own Reality Show on MTV, been on the NBC news, it has its own documentary and the list goes on.
When you look at the way EMP put’s itself out there in terms of media you can’t deny the significance of this effort versus community entities that can only use social media networks such as YouTube and Twitch.tv. I see the benefits of what EMP can do for me in the long run and that is what attracts me to the organization.
If I just want a sponsor to pay my plane fare to just travel to tournaments to compete with no true outlook on my career as a professional then I would just join these other organization that really just get product sponsorships and semi financial sponsorship. Unfortunately I know for a fact that there is no future in that. It’s a good start point but not something that you spend too much time in. EMP has helped me to realize my true potential and for that I’m very grateful and happy to be a part of the organization for 6 years and going.
DS: Do you feel a lot of pressure being a two time Evolution Champion in heading into the 2013 Evo Season, as far as defending your title?
Perfect Legend: Actually I used to feel that pressure but then again I have learned a completely different perspective on the whole competitive scene and all the elements that go along with it. I’ve learned in that you can’t win forever and a lot of gamers go into the whole competition with this endless purpose. They just want to win but then when you win what then?
There is this J!NX commercial that we did (Empire Arcadia) where it has Justin Wong, Prod1gy and TriForce (leader of EMP) in it. TriForce says this line, “It’s not just about winning, it’s what you do with that win.”
That line made me think about what was the real goal that I’m setting for myself. I don’t want to just win and then when I’m done, go back to repeat the same thing over and over again. That’s pointless. That is when I decided I want to be a true professional gamer like Fatal1ty, where after I win and establish myself I can use that to win at the game that matters most in life, prosperity in money and success.
A lot of people say that I’m playing the wrong game but that’s the beauty of it. I want to be one of the big contributing factors that help bring fighting games to that level. Guys like Justin Wong is established and known for Marvel vs. Capcom and Daigo for Street Fighter 4; I’ve established myself for Mortal Kombat and Dead or Alive. In the end I will be one of the most prominent figures that became a house hold name to help establish fighting games into eSports; so when going into competitions, I have in mind that I need to do this to help bring gaming to the mainstreamnot just for myself but for the gaming community at large. That right there gives me the motivation I need to beat even the best.
DS: You didn’t get to go to a lot of tournaments this past year – what has gone into your preparations instead of local competition?
Perfect Legend: Understanding the engine of the game and the character that I play. I have a lot of Street Fighter experience so reacting and constantly adding pressure on my opponent is key to my strategy in many of my match ups. Every now and then I’ll change it up because I don’t want to be readlike a pattern. Spacing, anti-air’s, max damage combos are all the fundamentals that I need.
There are a lot of players that just play each other thinking that they are learning how to fight. The reality is they are learning how to fight the player. They learn each other’s bad habits and patterns. Then it comes down who knows who more. I don’t play anyone that much so you’ll have to learn about my bad habits and patterns on the fly while I’m just reacting. That means no matter what you do, I can react while you have to wait and that gives me a significant advantage.