A Southern California juggernaut in Versus games for over a decade, Jay “Viscant” Snyder stands apart from many of his era in that he has fully embraced the future. Generating notoriety online by sharing his vast knowledge of the games he enjoyed, he gained even more visibility with the release of Marvel vs. Capcom 3, catapulting to the top of the game’s online leaderboards.
If the online multiplayer in a game is decent, you can get a wide variety of matchup experience.
“I train a lot differently from other players, in that I use online play as a heavy part of how I prepare. If the online multiplayer in a game is decent, you can get a wide variety of matchup experience, and you can learn a lot about the game and what works and what doesn't very quickly. When you run a mix-up-heavy game plan, learning peoples’ tendencies is critical. If you have a mix-up and virtually everyone you encounter reacts in the exact same way, you can count on even experienced and professional level players reacting in a similar way if they aren't familiar with it. The Wesker/Iron Man and later Wesker/Haggar mix-up set0ups couldn't have been developed and perfected without literally thousands of online games to help me learn and try different variants.”
Some players may take a critical view of online gaming in the fighting world, arguing from the purist’s pulpit in favor of the arcade environment, but results are results. Viscant has dominated for years, but in 2011, he added a new jewel to his crown: Evolution Champion. In the only Marvel vs. Capcom 3 tournament Evolution had a chance to feature before the release of Ultimate Marvel 3, Viscant walked away the winner of the tournament that, until then, was the biggest Marvel tournament of all time.
Jay’s story is similar to hundreds of thousands of players all over America - feeding quarters into Street Fighter machines in mall arcades, convenience stores, and pizza joints. Ironically, Viscant’s appreciation of online training via console stands in contrast with the fact that he never owned a home console until the Playstation 2 was released in North America.
“Getting a couple hundred for winning a tournament felt like a huge deal at the time!”
For years, Viscant played exclusively on arcade machines. For Snyder, like many, Southern Hills Golfland, not his living room, was where he honed his skills, but Viscant had been building an impressive resume of wins all across the Southern California scene has he travelled from arcade to arcade competing in the inaugural Marvel vs. Capcom. “The first big tournament I won was a SHGL tournament for MvC, with Zangief and Jin,” he recalls. “Getting a couple hundred for winning a tournament felt like a huge deal at the time!”
Viscant’s success continued through the release of Marvel vs. Capcom 2, a time when he gained a reputation for his helpful walkthroughs posted through then-fledgling online communities like SRK. A competitor in all the games he enjoys, Viscant also added 9th place Evolution finishes in both Super Street Fighter II: Turbo and Capcom vs. SNK 2 to his list of victories.
As fighting games entered the modern age with the release of Street Fighter 4, Jay was there. “I've always enjoyed Street Fighter and Tekken, and I've played various versions of those games semi-seriously. I was very serious about Street Fighter 4 and Super Street Fighter 4 when those games were new. I think other than vanilla MvC3, I had my best results from SSF4, with a lot of wins in tournament over top level players,” says Viscant.
It was “vanilla” Marvel 3 that allowed Jay to earn the biggest notch in his belt in 2011. Though he, by his own admission, has been slower to adapt to the Ultimate version of Marvel 3, Jay’s performance has been picking up considerably in 2012. His goal for the year?
“. . . this year I'm coming for my vest!”
“Winning Marvel at Evo this year! Just like last year was the biggest Marvel tournament ever, this year probably will be the new biggest ever. It would mean a lot to me to hang onto the title. Plus, Tom Cannon told me that if I managed to get through the bracket and win it all this year, he'd get me a gold vest. So while the money and prestige would be great, this year I'm coming for my vest!”
That gold vest would go quite nice with Jay’s favorite BROKENTIER shirt. “The gold foil Tiger t-shirt is a classic. I love that one,” he says.
You can keep up to date on Viscant and all of Team BROKENTIER by following @BROKENTIER as they fight their way down the Road to Evolution!