El Tigre (@Benjuil) wins #SavageSeries Week 2!

Results for the second week of our SFV Savage Series are in! The Week 1 champion, DNL Chris Tatarian, returns to defend his title against UrbanFlow and OrangeMan, along with five other new faces making their debut in this Top 8. Read on to get hype about what transpired!

UrbanFlow’s Karin has to run it back with Laura, only instead of Wolfkrone it’s Strike El Tigre controlling the Brazilian brawler. Both players abuse their medium buttons to defend their territory against one another, until eventually the scales tip into the favor of UrbanFlow who is constantly clipping El Tigre’s legs with shimmy set-ups. After five rounds of annihilation, El Tigre finally breaks the streak by punishing UrbanFlow’s reckless use of the EX Ressenha, tying up the set at 2-2. But it seems as if the set was already won, because with a Perfect K.O. opening the fifth game, UrbanFlow’s composure has been shattered beyond repair. El Tigre finishes it off 3-2 to advance to Winner’s Finals!

From watching the last set, you would expect most to describe it as a reverse blow-out, but that doesn’t compare to the course this next set would take. Week 1’s champion, DNL Chris Tatarian, would start this Top 8 with the same opening match from last week…against OrangeMan (Rashid). The matches are mostly dominated by dashes into buttons, but Chris manages to pick the right spots to regulate OrangeMan’s rushdown and eventually starts picking up combos off of his overhead Thunder Kicks. However, in spite of his wake-up Critical Art getting blocked right as Chris recovers from a whiff, OrangeMan retaliates with his V-Trigger into an Eagle Spike to punish a mis-played fireball. Unfortunately for him, his chance at redemption ends due to a failure to anti-air Chris’s neutral jump, and from there it snowballs into an explosive 3-0 victory for Mr. Tatarian!

As the tournament transitions to the Loser’s Bracket, Veloc 1Raptor and WinterFox’s 801 Strider take to the arena for a Necalli vs. Laura match-up. The match begins quickly with Strider overwhelming his prey right at the start, capitalizing on all hit-confirms. Realizing that his defensive decisions are leaving him open to K.O.s from command grabs, Veloc 1Raptor begins jumping and backdashing after Strider’s restands to steal back control of the match, only to be intimidated into blocking again. In Game 3, the rage of Necalli is finally unleashed, and his player matches Strider’s command grabs with his own after a game-winning check with a standing short. His Crush Counter roundhouses for trip-guards and the neutral game add to his chances, but Veloc 1Raptor finally hesitates in abusing his command grabs, thereby giving Strider an opening to escape defeat. After one final command dash into a low forward, Veloc 1Raptor is eliminated from the Savage Series!

Ultra Arcade’s TakuyaSugi takes on an uphill battle in the shape of CommanderJesse’s Dhalsim. With the recent buffs to Dhalsim’s hit advantage, opponents are forced to play a bit more conservatively when approaching this character, a factor that takes on more importance in a match-up such as this. Alex’s only ways in are all unsafe, but Takuya is careful to pick the best moments to bust them out and steal control of the match from Jesse in a mind-blowing fashion! However, Takuya experiences some difficulty in checking Jesse’s teleports. This allows Jesse to play incredibly mobile, much to Takuya’s frustration, but he stays solid and gets his first win after being down two losses. With no meter in the final round, a crucial clothesline allows Takuya to grab for a ray of hope, but Jesse’s composure remains as steely as his defense and he snuffs out the pixel of life! CommanderJesse advances 3-1 while TakuyaSugi takes home a 7th place finish from the Savage Series!

The Loser’s Bracket continues into its quarterfinals with WF 801 Strider vs UrbanFlow, a match which serves as a continuation of UrbanFlow’s tiring battles against Laura players (seriously, has he fought any other character since his Week 1 match?). It is from this set that UrbanFlow finally understands his loss of momentum from his desperate EX Ressenhas, so he keeps it to a minimum while sticking to his strategy of backing up before clipping their legs with his low forward. Strider’s haste in closing the distance costs him health almost every time, but he makes up for it with well-timed anti-airs and mind-blowing conversions. As the set crawls to a final game, it becomes a race as to who can initiate their offense first, and this time it’s UrbanFlow who crosses the finish line! This victory not only advances him to the Top 4, but also ends his struggle at the hands of Laura!

Commander Jesse takes charge of the tournament again, and he’s got OrangeMan in his sights. This battle is shaded with Call of Duty vibes as Dhalsim plays the role of the sniper while OrangeMan has to close the distance, but while Rashid’s mobility aids in his cause, Dhalsim has ways to play the game from up-close and full-screen. OrangeMan makes all of his openings count with a solid damage output, even going so far as to score a perfect K.O. to force a change in Jesse’s strategy. A clever use in Dhalsim’s fireball actually puts a stop to OrangeMan’s recklessness, allowing Jesse the chance to bring it all the way back and take the set 3-2!

Winner’s Finals unfolds with DNL Chris Tatarian going to town on Strike El Tigre’s Laura, almost scoring a perfect in the second round! But Tigre denies him and fights back, yet is unable to prevent Chris’s first win. However he takes the second game after a three-round exchange of V-skill dashes into grabs from both characters. Crucial Crush Counters opened the door to game-winning damage for El Tigre, but he tragically drops them as well as the matches. To add insult to injury, Chris decides to take a page from the book of Ryu players…by whiff punishing with a standing short for the win. El Tigre is sent to Loser’s Finals while Chris stands on the verge of beginning a streak of tournament wins in the Savage Series, with savage gameplay to match!

UrbanFlow takes another step towards Grand Finals by taking on CommanderJesse for a spot in Loser’s Finals. Like with Rashid, Karin’s movement mixed into her rushdown game forces Jesse to stay on edge in the neutral. UrbanFlow’s conversion rate proves highly exceptional and lends him leeway to control both the air and the ground, but each misstep allows Jesse to answer back with some nasty oki set-ups consisting of a Yoga Fire and his teleport. UrbanFlow makes up for it with commendable defense while quickly navigating back to his most effective range for his V-skill. V-reversals run amok as both players are determined to prevent each other’s pressure game. Jesse demonstrated a strong anti-air game throughout the set, but it does not hold out against the one jump-in by UrbanFlow that ends the entire set! The Kanzuki representative makes it to Loser’s Finals to run it back with Strike El Tigre!

Contrary to the back-and-forth nature of their previous encounter, the set takes a one-sided direction: El Tigre lays the Brazilian smackdown while UrbanFlow is trapped on the defensive with no idea on how to mount a counter. It takes three games until UrbanFlow finally begins to even the odds, but he is now faced with the challenge of running it back three games in a row while having no more room for error. UrbanFlow becomes cautious to press the neutral in the face of Laura’s offensive options, but this only allows El Tigre to play the game that suits him the most. With the pressure mounting high, the chink in Urban’s armor – EX Ressenha – appears once more, and like before it does not save him from the bulldozer that is El Tigre. The set concludes in El Tigre’s victory, setting the stage for the Savage Series Week 2 Grand Finals!

The viewers were ready to see the return of the Ken vs. Laura match-up, but a shocker from Chris Tatarian graces the screen instead…it is not Ken we see on the versus screen, but Guile! Chris has either abandoned character loyalty or is willing to use his set advantage to experiment with options against El Tigre’s playstyle, and he certainly keeps it competitive with his Guile by jumping out of the majority of Laura’s set-ups while punishing all of El Tigre’s missteps. However, El Tigre alters his strategy to one of suffocating pressure that in turn penalizes Chris for his boldness. As El Tigre rises to a 2-1 lead, Chris throws the audience for a loop yet again with another pocket character: Vega! Whatever his reason for this character change, it doesn’t appear to have solidarity as El Tigre dismantles his Vega as well, forcing a bracket reset for the Grand Finals!

This time, Chris Tatarian returns to his roots and the long-awaited confrontation between their trademark characters comes to be! El Tigre must contend with an annoying fireball game once again, although admittedly not one as suffocating as Guile’s, but annoying nonetheless. Chris’s hit-confirms off his command normals allow him to check his opponent for mis-timed button presses while netting himself a healthy lead. The first game looks to be heading towards a victory for Chris, but El Tigre defends his final pixel long enough to seize a miracle win after falling behind by a whole life bar! Obviously shaken by the outcome, Chris still answers back to win the second game, but also with little health just like his opponent. Then his jump-ins start to haunt him in the worst way possible, as each anti-air from El Tigre leads to an ambiguous set-up off a flip-out that Chris simply cannot block against at all. This development coupled with Laura’s godly damage output results in a decisive victory for Strike El Tigre!

Congratulations to El Tigre for dethroning DNL Chris Tatarian to become the Savage Series Week 2 champion!

Tournament Placings
1st Place – Strike El Tigre (Laura)
2nd Place – DNL Chris Tatarian (Ken)
3rd Place – UrbanFlow (Karin)
4th Place – CommanderJesse (Dhalsim)
5th Place Tie – WF 801 Strider (Laura) and OrangeMan (Rashid)
7th Place Tie – Veloc 1Raptor (Necalli) and UA TakuyaSugi (Alex)

Match Log
Winner’s Semifinals
Strike El Tigre (Laura): 3 vs. UrbanFlow (Karin): 2
DNL Chris Tatarian (Ken): 3 vs. OrangeMan (Rashid): 0
Loser’s Bracket
Veloc 1raptor (Necalli): 1 vs. WF 801 Strider (Laura): 3
CommanderJesse (Dhalsim): 3 vs. UA TakuyaSugi (Alex): 1
Loser’s Quarterfinals
WF 801 Strider (Laura): 2 vs. UrbanFlow (Karin): 3
OrangeMan (Rashid): 2 vs. CommanderJesse (Dhalsim): 3
Winner’s Finals
Strike EL Tigre (Laura): 1 vs. DNL Chris Tatarian (Ken): 3
Loser’s Semifinals
UrbanFlow (Karin): 3 vs. CommanderJesse (Dhalsim): 1
Loser’s Finals
Strike El Tigre (Laura): 3 vs. UrbanFlow (Karin): 1
Grand Finals Set 1
DNL Chris Tatarian (Guile and Vega): 1 vs. Strike El Tigre (Laura): 3
Grand Finals Set 2
DNL Chris Tatarian (Ken): 1 vs. Strike El Tigre (Laura): 3

Only the second week and the crown has been passed to a new champion! As the player standings expand to include more names, the race to the ultimate prize becomes closer! Savage Series enters its halfway point next weekend, so if you play Street Fighter V and haven’t yet entered our tournaments, you’ll want to consider it!

Player standings are updated with Week 2’s results and can be found here. To sign up for Week 3, visit this page!

Our thanks go out once again to the entertaining duo that is SFV_Vicious and Reepal for providing us with their gift of commentary! We’re looking forward to their return next Monday, as we are looking forward to yours as well!

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