Behind The Stick: An Interview with Regi

I had the chance to talk to Regi, arguably the premier Game & Watch player in Smash. In this interview we discussed: His history with fighting games, the Mexican scene, his crowning achievement, his plans for the future, and more.

Q: Hey Regi, I appreciate you taking the time to do an interview with me. This is going to be my first time delving into the world of Smash and I’m excited. But before we get started, how are you today?

Regi: Hi Frail, I’m good, been quite busy these days with work and an upcoming Smash national in Guadalajara Mexico, my city. First and foremost, thanks for taking your time at interviewing me. It’s an honor to be your first Smash player interviewed.

Q: Happy to have you man! So for those who are unaware of who you are could you give us a brief history of your career in fighting games?

Regi: Of course. I’ve been playing video games all my life. Smash Bros. is the 1st competitive game that brought me into the world of eSports, by being sponsored thanks to Smash for Wii U. I also was part of several teams for League and Overwatch, but ultimately, my main game is Smash, continuing on my career with the latest entry, Smash Bros. Ultimate.

I tried playing other fighting games, specially SF IV and BlazBlue, but I found myself enjoying more the non-traditional fighting game that is Smash Bros., aside from the fact that I like Nintendo, so I like the roster a lot.

As for placings, since my debut with Smash Brawl, I placed top 32 in ladder season for All is Brawl, won most tourneys in my region. With Smash 4, I had more chance to travel, getting top 13 and 17 at EVO 2016 and 2017, several top placings in national tourneys in Mexico, top placings at internationals in the US and won most of the tourneys in my region. I even got considered as the best Mr. Game & Watch in Smash 4. For Ultimate, my first international was at Genesis 6, getting 35th out of almost 2k entrants, top 4’s in all mexican nationals and so far, I’m 1st in my region’s PR.

Q: So the Mexican fighting game scene is one that I, and I’m sure many others, are unfamiliar with. How is the health of the scene? Is there a lot of people there? Is it just a close tight knit scene? How do you think the scene compares to others worldwide?

Regi: The Mexican scene regarding fighting games is quite healthy, having people active in games like Dragon Ball FighterZ, Super Smash Bros. Melee and Ultimate and, before dying, UMvC 3. In a sense, it’s still small compared to the more mainstream places like the US, but it’s quite strong, with notable players like MKLeo, being one of the best, if not the best, Smash 4 player and actually, top 3 in Ultimate, along with strong UMvC 3 Mexican players and many more Smash Ultimate players. So, it’s safe to say, Smash 4 was Mexico’s best FG and Ultimate is continuing that trend. Most notable Mexican players have the capacity to be top 50 worldwide.

Q: So you’re pretty well known for your Mr. Game & Watch. What was it that made you want to play him? He seems like a rather under picked character from my limited knowledge of the game.

Regi: When Melee was the new game, I played it a lot, but very casually. More than a year later, I got the “New Challenger Approaching” message. I was like “Woah, I still have characters to unlock?” Once I saw G&W, it kind of was love at first sight. I liked how he looked completely different to the entire Smash world and still fit in quite well. I started using him and I was having so much fun with the character that I dropped all characters I mained in Melee. Since then, I have been a G&W main in every Smash iteration.

Q: When you look back at your career over the years who do you think were some of the people that had the biggest impact on you and why?

Regi: To be quite honest, I feel I have been really on my own in every competitive game I’ve played. Yes, my parents supported me, economically, but they never really care(d) what I did or how I did in every tourney, big or small, heck they don’t even know the name of “Smash Brothers”. My actual girlfriend, and these last few years, my sister, have been the ones truly supporting me the most. Feels kind of bad to have this support in what I could feel is not my biggest moment in competitive gaming, due to the fact that today I’m dealing more with adult matters that concentrating on gaming isn’t my top priority.

Q: You don’t have to answer this one but I think it’s an interesting topic to follow up with. Do you think your parents would be more supportive if it were financial feasible to compete more or were they the type who disapproved of the idea from the start and had no plans to change?

Regi: They’re more focused on traditional success plans, study, have a “normal” job, be productive and yeah. The idea of me “working” around playing video games was never a topic they really liked. They even told me every now and then to “stop wasting my time”.

Q: A very familiar concept. You’ve been fairly successful so it surprises me slightly that they are not more supportive. Speaking of your success what do you think is your crowning achievement so far in Smash?

Regi: My crowning achievement I would feel was being the best G&W player in the world in Smash 4. It felt great, made me smile, being able to carry the title with enjoyment and accomplishment after several great placings at very big tournaments.

Q: For sure! So obviously you’ve been playing Ultimate. How do you feel about the game? How do you feel about the community and it’s growth. Do you think the game will enjoy long term success or no?

Regi: The game’s great! I enjoyed Smash 4 a lot due to the way how it got mechanics from past Smash games into 1 and added others that mostly were great. Ultimate seems to show 2 things, 1, Smash games after Smash 4 will most likely use Smash 4 as base from now on, so we can get to see a standard and 2, almost every mechanic was buffed/nerfed and that was a great thing. Buffer system is still an issue but still the game feels great overall. As for the community, Ultimate’s seems to be the healthiest it has been and the largest, which shows it will last in the long term run and that’s also a great thing.

Q: So let’s talk about you outside the game. Why did you end up going with the name Regi over something else?

Regi: I’ve always been someone who plays video games, mostly, Nintendo ones. Pokemon is one of the games I play the most, and I never had the “need” to create a tag in those days till online arrived to Pokemon in the DS games. I needed a username for the forums and whatnot, so I went with “Regi”, which I took from the 3rd gen legendary trio (which, are my favorite legendaries). People even called me like that without me telling me their tag due to me using those guys in matches and whatnot, so it kinda worked. The “Shikimi” one, was later added just to help differentiate the “Regi” one, since it’s a kinda simple tag and it wouldn’t surprise me to see another “Regi” around, and which name I also got from Pokemon, lol.

Q: So as you’ve stated you’re a fan of quite a few other games. What are some of your other hobbies and what sort of things do you enjoy doing?

Regi: Watching anime, and long ago, playing soccer are my hobbies. I enjoy being with my girlfriend, doing basically anything, as long as she is happy, then that makes me happy. Also, helping around my scene in whatever way I can, running tourneys, giving out advice both in and out of the game and overall just being nice to people are things I truly enjoy doing.

Q: And what about in terms of your career? I know you’re a Computer Systems Engineer? Was that just always something you were passionate about? How did you get into that?

Regi: It wasn’t really something for which I have a big passion, though I like it. It was between that or graphic designer and since being a designer is kinda bloated in Mexico and IT isn’t, I went more for it, due to it also being a great career in the long run. I enjoyed it during college, and I have been inside the professional world just recently since when graduating, I wanted to try if I would get some kind of wealth from gaming first before getting caught up in front a computer.

Q: I feel you. Gotta put food on the table. So what are your plans for the future? Do you plan to compete more or do you have other things in mind?

Regi: These days, I have been having the goal to leave home and start life with whom I hope will be my SO. We’re in process of buying a small house, so I’ve been kind of busy lately with that. I do plan in competing still, having several tournaments around Mexico between May and June, but I still want to take it easy. Things have been going smoothly so far, which I appreciate so much. Hopefully it will stay like that.

Q: That’s all I have for you my man! Before I let you go is there anyone you would like to give a shout out to and where can people find you on social media?

Regi: I’d like to give a shout out to my girlfriend who’s been the biggest support I have right now and thank her for all she has done for me. You all can find me in Facebook and Twitter as Regi_Shikimi. Thank you very much Frail for this interview, I greatly appreciate it.

Be sure to follow Regi on Twitter @Regi_Shikimi

And as always you can follow me on Twitter @itsfrail

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