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Issues with dexterity

Kirbymeister

Smash Cadet
Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
52
Location
Australia
NNID
hazzahbazzah
3DS FC
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Hey all!
So recently I've tried getting into competitive smash, and even though I can't really attend any events at my age, I still find it fun to just try teching, DI'ing, L-Cancelling, and the lot against CPUs.
However, while performing these moves in SSB64, Brawl and 4 are fine, I'm having major dexerity issues in Melee. Maybe it's because of my young age, perhaps it's related to the minor changes that the PAL version has in relation to the NTSC version, but I find it incredibly difficult to perform them in Melee. Movement feels stiff, Wavedashing is so hard I can't find a major use for it, landing lag feels like forever, L-Cancelling is hard to nail, SHFFLing is flat-out impossible, using the C-Stick is just off...
I've tried other characters, as opposed to my usuals Kirby/Capt. Falcon, yet no matter what the issue still occurs. As such, I've chalked it up to lack of finger dexterity.
Any advice for improving?
 

necroTaxonomist

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Oct 13, 2014
Messages
127
Location
Georgia
Well as far as Melee goes, stiff movement, long landing lag, and difficulty shffling are all common symptoms of playing Kirby.

But seriously, if you've only been playing for a small amount of time, don't expect to suddenly be able to do all the cool stuff that the guys have been playing for years are doing. Eventually it gets easier.
 
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Dolla Pills

Smash Ace
Joined
Mar 9, 2015
Messages
894
Location
Connecticut
I'm confused because brawl and 64 only have like two of the techniques you listed. And anyway different games are gonna feel different, you'll get used to it eventually and will probably be questioning how you ever thought Melee movement felt stiff compared to Brawl
 
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Kirbymeister

Smash Cadet
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Dec 25, 2014
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52
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Australia
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hazzahbazzah
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I'm confused because brawl and 64 only have like two of the techniques you listed. And anyway different games are gonna feel different, you'll get used to it eventually and will probably be questioning how you ever thought Melee movement felt stiff compared to Brawl
thanks for the info.
might have mis-spoken earlier: I didn't mean I thought Melee was slow compared to Brawl, (It's faster as a given: *everything's* faster than Brawl), but rather that I thought Melee was slow compared to how I had seen it being played competitively.
Even fox felt a little off, and that was pretty surprising.
Will continue practicing today, see if I can get any better.
are there any techniques you guys think I should try learning first? Even teching feels rough in Melee, and I can pull it off with ease in all other Smash games...
 

Dolla Pills

Smash Ace
Joined
Mar 9, 2015
Messages
894
Location
Connecticut
First I would work on L cancelling as you just really need that, then wavedashing so you don't get stuck in your shield all the time, then dash dancing and other practical forms of movement. JC grab is another simple yet very important technique with most characters
 

Wreckarooni

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Jun 15, 2015
Messages
197
Location
Midwest
Melee very difficult at first. Probably the most difficult out of the popular FGC games, and it definitely takes the longest to master because of the stages and emergent variable nature of the combos, techs and MUs.

There is a process that I went through when first picking this game up seriously -

Month 1-2
Having fun but am frustrated with getting L cancel timing when there is hitlag, timing the FF and knowing when I can act. A lot of the spacies stuff is very hard and overwhelming.

Month 3-4
SHFFL is frustrating on 3 frame jump characters. Really hate how the turn dash work in Melee, you get stuck in slow turn if you take more than 1 frame to cross the analog threshhold. I start feeling overwhelmed thinking about having to learn all the differrent stages; movement between platforms, combos and tech chasing between platforms, randall timing, shield dropping, etc. Thinking about quitting because my controller now has a bad drifty analog stick that is making learning tech and movement even more impossible to learn or use...

Month 4-5
I get a new controller and I experiment with all characters, I find that some are just way more natural and I can do all the standard tech with them like its second nature. Floaty characters or characters with slow FF speeds or long SH times are just way harder to SHFFL and L cancel with. Wavedashes finally are just muscle memory, I just do them whenever I need to (any jump slower than the 4:6 still feels wonky to WD with though)

Around month 6 I have a breakthrough from out of nowhere. Everything becomes so natural to me even for characters and tech I had trouble with before, I start seeing the game metaphorically slow down for me meaning I can notice and predict/react to things faster. I'm getiting so consistent at everything that the game reaches the point where its just super fun because it feels like I have the tools and skills to do all the fast/fun stuff I want to do whenever I want to. Finally can beat better players or at least be competent and not just a waste of time.

When I started playing good people a lot I felt like quitting again because I wasn't thinking about the mental aspect of the game reading, conditioning, and high level tech chasing. But that came with time, now Melee is the most fun thing ever and the time flies way too fast when I'm playing matches or just practicing solo.

I would suggest trying Luigi, Fox, Puff, Young Link, Falcon, Peach, Sheik, Yoshi, Ganon, Samus, Pikachu, and Marth (maybe ICs)

Those will give you a full scope of the unique types of play styles and you're bound to find a character type you prefer from there.
 
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Stride

Smash Ace
Joined
Feb 22, 2014
Messages
680
Location
North-west England (near Manchester/Liverpool)
Movement feels stiff
I thought Melee was slow compared to how I had seen it being played competitively
The pace of the game and the techskill barrier to being able to control your character competently contribute to giving this impression; if you can't L-cancel then landing lag is going to seem bad, if you can't wavedash then movement is going to seem restrictive, etc.

A lot of the people who say that Melee's movement feels "stiff" or "clunky" or "unresponsive" are used to playing with the generous input buffers that Brawl or Smash 4 have. Melee has no universal input buffer (though certain things are buffered, to various extents, such as smash inputs with the control stick) so you have to be more familiar with the timings for everything and more precise in your execution.

Another possible contributing factor is your controller being new. If that's the case, then things will get better as it's broken in and you get used to it more.

perhaps it's related to the minor changes that the PAL version has in relation to the NTSC version
The verison differences don't affect any of these things. However, if you're running the PAL version in 50Hz (which you shouldn't be doing) then it will look terrible and probably throw you off, so that might be a factor.

Wavedashing is so hard I can't find a major use for it
Even mid-level players can do it really consistently, so the difficultly virtually doesn't factor in to its applications.

landing lag feels like forever, L-Cancelling is hard to nail
Melee's landing lag is more than 64's (basically nonexistent) landing lag, and less than Brawl's and Smash 4's. While the window is a generous 7 frames, L-cancelling is dependent on knowing several other properties of the character (fall speed, jump height, hitlag of the relevant move) and the timing with which the move connects with the opponent (if at all), so it can be somewhat hard to learn when you're not familiar enough with the game in general.

SHFFLing is flat-out impossible,
As above, except with more factors to consider since it's a combination of several techniques.

using the C-Stick is just off...
The input mapping is different than it is in other games, so your inputs won't be read in exactly the way you're familiar with.

I've tried other characters, as opposed to my usuals Kirby/Capt. Falcon, yet no matter what the issue still occurs. As such, I've chalked it up to lack of finger dexterity
Your physical dexterity is most certainly good enough. You just need to build the muscle memory, as with any other task like this, such as playing an instrument or writing.

are there any techniques you guys think I should try learning first? Even teching feels rough in Melee, and I can pull it off with ease in all other Smash games...
If you're reasonably comfortable with the really basic things like distinguishing tilt/smash inputs and short hops/full hops, then work on L-cancelling and wavedashing. L-cancelling especially, since it makes your aerials better with no downsides, and you never have to worry about when to use it so you can always apply it, which make it easier to implement. So many things are restricted without being able to do those techniques, and that drastically changes the way you have to play, so the sooner you learn them the better.
 
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-ACE-

Gotem City Vigilante
Joined
Sep 25, 2007
Messages
11,534
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The back country, GA
In melee, you have much better options out if of dash than you do out of run. By wavedashing, you can dash closer to your opponent. Wavedash is a commitment, so you want to do it usually when your opponent is in stun/about to tech (creating offensive options) or in landing lag (creating defensive options) when they hit your shield behind you. You can pivot/backdash at will out of dash very quickly, as well as shield and stop your momentum in one frame. You can't do either out of run.
 

Kirbymeister

Smash Cadet
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tried Melee again today: even when I'm just playing for fun, it still feels a little off...
I think it's due to my inexperience with the controller: I'll try it for a few weeks and see how it goes.
In the meantime, I've also decided to try and use Fox for a bit. He seems a bit more fluid than the other characters, though regardless of character choice I still find it tough to nail L-cancels, short hops and the like...guess that's more due to my lack of experience than anything else.
 

ChivalRuse

Smash Hero
Joined
Jun 13, 2007
Messages
8,413
Location
College Park, MD
Well as far as Melee goes, stiff movement, long landing lag, and difficulty shffling are all common symptoms of playing Kirby.
None of those things are true for Kirby. He has quite a fast wavedash, and his dash speed is reasonable. He actually has very low landing lag on all of his aerials when l-cancelled. SHFFLing is fast for him with his 3-frame jumpsquat.

His problems are his weight, overall weak hitboxes, and poor recovery options.
 

Squire

Smash Apprentice
Joined
Sep 5, 2014
Messages
130
Location
MD/VA
Honestly, it takes a while to get the flow of movement in Melee. At least it did for me. I could wavedash early on, but didn't know how to use it, and it was difficult to do consistently. Wavelanding, wavedashing, dash-dancing, DI, teching, etc, didn't feel useful for me when I first started, and I didn't know how to implement them. It's not the game, or you, it's just a time thing.

One thing I did to improve was do as much hand-warmers style tech stuff as I could between stocks when playing against friends. Eventually you'll get into the habit of doing it during the fight, and it'll slowly become second nature. You'll get better at it, and it'll become much smoother and more natural.

Also, I'm no Kirby expert, but maybe it's a speed/weight issue you're having with the character himself. He's on the low end of the tier list, and movement probably has something to do with that in comparison to other characters. I'm not a Kirby main, nor familiar with the Kirby match-up, and there seems to be some debate in the comments above about whether or not it's a Kirby issue.

As far as nailing L-cancels and short hops, the timing takes a while to get down when you first start. Don't sweat it if you're not getting it right away. It's better to become intimately familiar with the character's moves (not just what they are, but their hitboxes and speed and priority and uses) first so that when you short hop/L-cancel/wavedash/etc, you know why you're doing it, and you can visualize how you want to follow that particular tech up.

Hope this helped. Keep trying! We can always use more melee players.
 

Jebus244

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Dec 6, 2014
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Jacksonville, Florida
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NOHANDLEB4RZ
Work on dash dancing. If you can dash dance and use it tactically, you'll see your speed shoot up. I have not learned a more important tech than dash dancing, it's not even hard. Especially if you're playing Falcon, my god, that should be the first thing you get down pat. Put on a lvl 9 cpu Marth and just bait. Make the computer whiff grabs and dash attacks and go in for jump canceled grabs and learn shield stops. Once you do that, then learn l-cancel, then wavedashing, and learn how to incorporate wavedashing in your dash dancing. Then wavelanding. If you can get all that down, then you can focus with the more niche techniques. Once you get down dashing dancing, you'll play brawl and smash 4 falcon and it will just feel like garbage. It is so important for neutral.

As far as stiff movement, you have to realize that you cannot buffer many movements in melee, everything has to be timed very precisely. Players can play smash 4 and brawl and feel frame perfect, but then come to melee and feel like they get locked in movements, but they're just not used to having to be so precise.
 
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Red Ninja

Smash Rookie
Joined
Feb 4, 2016
Messages
9
Location
Melbourne
What setup are you using? As in CRT/new TV , what controller are you using, disc/dolphin emulator - as these all could effect input lag/clunkiness
 

FoxE

Smash Cadet
Joined
Apr 19, 2015
Messages
58
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San Jose, California
Oh it's not your age or something like that. It's all practice. I'm 15 and I can get almost every down consistently. Just get on once a day and practice practice.
 

Kirbymeister

Smash Cadet
Joined
Dec 25, 2014
Messages
52
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Australia
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hazzahbazzah
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What setup are you using? As in CRT/new TV , what controller are you using, disc/dolphin emulator - as these all could effect input lag/clunkiness
I'm using an LCD Flat Screen TV, on a physical gamecube with first-party controller.
I'm not too sure if there'd be a setup better than that.
Oh it's not your age or something like that. It's all practice. I'm 15 and I can get almost every down consistently. Just get on once a day and practice practice.
well, kudos to you, and thanks for the advice.
I'll try and see if I can get on Melee some time today...
 

2 +

Smash Cadet
Joined
Aug 3, 2014
Messages
41
Location
Victoria
I'm using an LCD Flat Screen TV.
This is a problem. Lcd flatscreens need to do a significant amount of image upscale and post processing before displaying the image and this causes significant display delay. Switch to a CRT as they have effectively no display lag. You will notice the improvement as soon as you reach the character select screen and this will make all tech feel much more natural. You won't want to go back. There are numerous threads with more information on this topic.
 
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Maza Nomains

Smash Rookie
Joined
Aug 28, 2016
Messages
11
I'm using an LCD Flat Screen TV
I think I found your main problem. Definitely find a CRT asap. Other than that, it just takes time. It took me probably a year of Project M and 6 months of Melee, grinding tech skill almost every day, to git gud. And all I have is consistent tech skill, I still get completely destroyed by most more experienced players (assuming they also have decent tech skill). If you're really into it, you'll get consistent eventually just by virtue of playing a lot. There's no trick to it, most tech skill is just muscle memory, you only get it through loads and loads of repetition.
 
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