We sit down with the legend, Ryan Hart in this exclusive interview. The multi award winning esports player from Tekken and Street Figher is not even scratching the surface on what Ryan has accomplished.
GS: First of all, thanks Ryan for agreeing to do this with us. How have you been? Especially in these unprecedented times.
RH: Hi, thanks for having me, yes indeed, quite a difficult situation for everyone right now. Just trying to adapt to the new rhythm of life.
GS: So lets begin, what made you get into videogames?
RH: Loneliness probably. Despite going out to play a lot, I didn’t have many friends when I was 10 years old. Then when I found a mini cab station with some arcades in it, I started going there quite often. I had a commodore 16 at home and later a Sega Master System but finding the arcade was when gaming started to have a bigger presence both inside and outside the house.
GS: If I do recall (did my research haha) in 94, wasn’t there was a tournament in central London? Was this the tournament which pretty much started you to go on this journey to where you are today?
RH: Yes, it was the Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo National Tournament sponsored by KISS FM. This was the first fighting game tournament I had ever heard of and has to be one of the first of all time if not the first. Despite losing badly, and I mean really badly hahaha, this is inevitably what started my tournament roller coaster.
GS: Of all the tournaments you have entered and won. Which tournament win really sticks out for you and why?
RH: There are a lot of standouts for me so its always a hard question. I think winning Final Round 17, the first ever Capcom Pro Tour Premier event was a good one. I became the first European player to win a Major on US soil, which also helped the European scene to be more confident when travelling abroad.
GS: You have had some fierce rivalries over the years. Who would you say was the toughest opponent you have come up against, plus did you learn something new which stays in your game today perhaps?
RH: I usually feel that if I play my absolute best, nobody has a chance but I’m also aware of my own vulnerability as well. So, I’d say it’s always a battle against myself to be honest. Being able to bring my absolute A game is always the biggest challenge I have. To that end, I’m probably my own biggest rival. There are lots of good players out there, and I feel like these opponents have helped me learn to develop different areas of my style and different forms of expression.
GS: What’s the best advice would you give to current and new players into fighting games?
RH: There are tons of fighting games out there, so take time to find the one you enjoy the most, fighting games take time to get good at, so its best to pick the one that gives you the most fun. Once that’s done, try and join your local community that play your game and meet people to increase your community circle. Play as much as possible, the more you play, the more you can learn, this is really important.
GS: Fighting sticks. I have a cheap one myself known as Venom, and its pretty good too and not breaking the bank either. Which fighting sticks do you recommend?
RH: Right now, I’m using the Razer Panthera, I enjoy using this stick for both 2D and 3D games.
GS: The UK scene, can it be better? I feel we are miles behind of that of the US, Japan for example.
RH: That is just a misconception, US and Europe are both very strong. Japan are still the best country on the planet on Street Fighter, but Europe aren’t behind NA on Street Fighter and Tekken in my opinion. NA just has more eyes on it and they have more events than Europe but there definitely isn’t a massive gap.
GS: Do you like commentating? How was the transition. Do you feel more pressured than you would playing?
RH: Commentary is fun, it is a loose form of playing, you can still exercise your mind about the match details and talk as if you were thinking in the match yourself. I enjoy the opening to share my thoughts with a learning audience, I’m very happy to share while making the match exciting through commentary.
GS: With new consoles coming soon and obviously the fans probably be wanting news on the new tekken and street fighter etc. How did you feel when both Namco and Capcom revealed more content for their retrospect game?
RH: I for one wasn’t exactly surprised but also glad, hyped that we are getting more content. For me its strange people already want a new game when they haven’t even maximised themselves on the current game. A new game comes out and before long they want a new one again. The main problem is some players don’t know what they want, so no game is ever enough. People also don’t realise they probably won’t get the game they are expecting anyway, so may as well enjoy what we have now. New does not mean good, or that you will like it, people often forget that.
GS: Lastly, what projects have you got going and what is install for Ryan Hart in the future?
Nothing I can share right now, but there are some fun plans in the pipeline so stay tuned to my social media.
We hope you enjoyed the interview with Ryan Hart. You can follow Ryan here on twitter.
We greatly appreciate Ryan for agreeing to doing this interview.