The Tao of Street Fighter

 February 23, 2009         2 Comments

If you’ll forgive the shit title, this is a quick one about the first of a series of poems done by Ross Sutherland, one of The Mercy People – as I call them.

The Mercy People are all into poetry and digital art and mash-ups and other stuff I don’t understand, all of which is intriguing or amusing in some form or another.

Between them and their satellite groups they do, or have done, Mercy, Ping Pong, Disted Twisco, Fiction and Those Things In The Church. They once gave me an award for bravery, which I treasure to this day.

Anyway this poem is one of a set about Street Fighter, the second iteration of which used up a frightening amount of time in my youth.

Many’s the occasion I whooped my mates, who would also play as Ken or Ryu, with Chun Li’s infuriating (and easy to pull off) Spinning Bird Kick or Blanka’s equally annoying (and even easier) Bartender Punch.

I’m fairly sure it wasn’t called a Bartender Punch in the game, but that was the name we gave it and it was frequently responsible for a control pad being hurled across the room as Blanka glowed in victory.

Zangief, Edmund Honda and Dhalsim were never used, as they were universally rubbish. Vega, a preening whinnying ladyboy was the worst of all; virtually impossible to kill and possessed of a rage-inducing mocking laugh.

Anyway, Ross has done a series of poems on these characters, the first of which is Ryu. I particularly enjoyed this couplet on the propensity of less-skilled gamers to simply bash buttons into oblivion:

No noble fighter’d do it constantly,

on every single fucking bout he fought.

I urge you to tune in to Nick Holloway’s Mercy Recommends blog. I’m hoping for one that slates Vega, the little shit.


  1. I used to enjoy the Blanka electrocution trick. You had to crouch down and then press a stupid combination of buttons. Oddly it would have a glue-like effect on your opponent, rather than flinging them across the opposite side of the screen. Which is what you’d think would happen in the event of high voltage electrocution. Clearly, I’ve given this far too much thought.

  2. Not so Dave, your knowledge of electrocution is sadly lacking.

    I once had a conversation with a man who worked the railways as a traffic cop. He described how people would ‘stick’ to the high-voltage rails if they touched them, while I looked for another seat.

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