Recording Personal/Team Gameplay
Recording gameplay is an important part of my team’s everyday practice routine. The ability to have multiple point of views is an important part for us identifying our own mistakes while determining the best counter-strategies to use against opponents. Identifying your own mistakes is also a great way to quickly improve your knowledge of a certain position and playing style. It becomes much easier to play a position after witnessing the most effective methods to play a position. I highly recommend ordering a capture card and recording your gameplay as soon as possible.
Watching Opponents Replays
VOD is a great way to directly see the different types of strategies and positions of your opposition. This includes a variety of different VoD sources ranging from YouTube “scrimmage” videos to MLG Pro Player VoD, all can be utilized to increase your chances of success against an opposing team.
Increasing your overall awareness can improve your knowledge and understanding of the general flow of a match. General knowledge and awareness of where your opponents are going to be and how they will likely react to a given situation can provide a strategic upper hand. It also improves your communication with teammates and how you can more effectively execute against the opposition.
Identifying Opponent’s Weakness
The easiest way to identify an opponent’s weakness is by locating where and how they die or lose. Their position on the map and the manner in which they died could point to signs that exploit a weakness. Some players may rush certain way to a power weapon or specific position that leaves them vulnerable to grenades, double teams, or a combination of different tactics on various other games. Knowing a team’s weakness may also help when selecting specific maps and gametypes during Major League Game Pro Circuit events. Possessing the knowledge that a team is not as good on a certain map or gametype can increase your chances for success against that specific opponent.
Learning New Techniques and Strategies
Sometimes watching VoD can lead to very beneficial personal improvements. Some players may use different tactics that you and your team have never seen that allow you to incorporate them into your gameplan. From personal experience, I have noticed that many teams seem to copy strategies from other teams without necessarily trying to differentiate or work in their own twist. I do not recommend directly attempting to mimick another strategy completely unless you and your team feel confident performing another team’s strategy “better” than the original team. There are bits and pieces that can be learned from every team and molded into something completely new and unique when taking the time and effort to properly watch VOD.
Break Down Brackets
My team’s methodology of practicing a wide variety of teams greatly helped us break down tournament brackets match by match. We would break down each match based on the probability of each team’s success based on our own experiences dealing with each team. In each of our team’s match ups we would give “if-then” statements and discuss what we needed to do against various opponents (ex. if Team X wins, then we play Team X in Round 2 of the WB). In my short example, my team would be in the process of discussing what strategies and weaknesses we would exploit against Team X.
After we broke down which opponents we had the highest chances of playing, we would see how much video footage we had of those teams. Each team had a certain number of strategies we would attempt to run as well as what maps we would select. We credit a lot of success to the preparation involved in many of our match-ups.
Exploit and Execute
Once you have properly game planned your opponent, it’s all about execution! Practice and repetition are the easiest ways to make sure you and your team are able to perform when it counts the most. It is a team effort to make sure each person is as mentally prepared as possible before each match to secure a victory.