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'I don't mind playing top tier, but don't like them in UMvC3' - Justin Wong talks EVO win, top 5 characters, and more in EventHubs exclusive interview

Posted by Nicholas 'MajinTenshinhan' Taylor • July 18, 2014 at 2:30 p.m. PDT

EVO 2014 has wrapped up, and finally, the crowd favourite EG|Justin Wong has won 1st place in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3.

While Justin has taken several tournaments in the game with his signature team of Wolverine, Storm and Akuma, that EVO title has always been just out of reach for the veteran fighting game master.

We caught up with Justin in the wake of EVO 2014, and asked him a few questions about what it feels like to be the champ. Here's a snippet to get you started.

MajinTenshinhan: Last year, you did an amazing run through top 8 of Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, but fell short in the end against RG|Flocker, who took home the gold. Since then, people have been very vocal about you bringing the hype to Marvel, so all eyes were definitely on you this year, even moreso given your prestigious history with the game's predecessor. How does it feel playing on the big stage, knowing that you have so many people out there rooting specifically for you?

EG|Justin Wong: It felt really good, just because making it back on the stage for top 8 of a Marvel vs. Capcom game gave me hope, and hope for everyone else. I wanted to win really bad, and I didn't want to let people down again.

You can find the rest of Justin's answers below.

MajinTenshinhan: Your team in Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 seems to be a huge reason why people root for you. I haven't seen many people place Wolverine within the top 5 characters, and I've never seen anyone place Storm or Akuma within the top 10. This underdog quality has its positives, like huge fan support, but it also naturally has its drawbacks.

I'm sure you've had moments where you feel as if your team is holding you back, but you've stuck with it for most of Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3's lifetime and finally took home the biggest tournament of the year with it. What's the feeling, using a team that is based more on synergy and your own playstyle than individual character strengths, and finally bringing home this huge victory with it?

EG|Justin Wong: Well, the thing about it is, I have no problem with playing top tier characters. I just don't like how the Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 top tiers work. Because of that, I want to play the characters that fit my style perfectly, which Wolverine and Storm do. And then, I needed to add Akuma for Wolverine and Storm's benefit.

I have had moments, but Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is so creative that there's always an answer, in my opinion. But because of that, I am so happy to win with what I want to win with.

MajinTenshinhan: Considering your longtime success across so many different titles throughout the years, you may very well be the overall most consistent fighting game player in the world. What is it that allows you to succeed in so many different titles, often simultaneously, and also keep that strong drive alive?

EG|Justin Wong: Well, I'd have to give credit to my upbringing in Chinatown Fair. The people who played with me in Capcom vs. SNK 2, Street Fighter 3: 3rd Strike, Super Turbo, Tekken 5, Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Marvel vs. Capcom 1 and everything else made me always want to compete in many different games competitively. I think that's what helped me to be able to play so many games.

MajinTenshinhan: You've shown strong support on Twitter for the Super Smash Bros. scene, and had many kind words to say about their community, their dedication and their high level of performance. Is there any chance we might see EG|Justin Wong up in the results section for Super Smash Bros. tournaments in the future?

EG|Justin Wong: I love Smash Bros. Who doesn't? Even if you don't understand it competitively, it's so freaking fun to watch. I never really played Melee, I got 2nd in a Brawl tournament when the game first came out at Final Round, but that was it.

I will probably try Smash 4, and I do have a GameCube on the side chilling, but no matter what, I will always have popcorn ready to watch EG|PPMD, C9|Mango, EMP|Armada and EMP|Mew2King play it out.

MajinTenshinhan: With your pedigree as a fighting game player, Marvel vs. Capcom 2 being the title you've had the most success in, I think a lot of people would be interested to hear the answer to this next question. What do you consider your favourite fighting game of all time?

EG|Justin Wong:: My favorite fighting game of all time is Marvel vs. Capcom 2. It's my favorite pretty much just because I played so much of it. I can pretty much explain everything that happens in the game, and I still both watch videos and play it casually.

MajinTenshinhan: As the current Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 champion, who do you consider to be the best Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 players besides yourself? Also, what characters do you consider to be the top 5 strongest overall characters in the game?

EG|Justin Wong: The best players, besides myself, are obviously the consistent GG|NYChrisG, RG|Filipino Champ and RG|Flocker. The 4 of us have been in the EVO spotlight since the beginning of the game's debut at EVO.

But there are up-and-comers who are trying to get there too, like CTRL|RayRay, MMG|ApologyMan, BE|KaneBlueRiver and others. Also, the top 5 strongest characters in my opinion are Zero, Morrigan, Vergil, Magneto and Nova.

MajinTenshinhan: Thank you so much for agreeing to do this interview, and massive congratulations to your EVO 2014 victory!

EG|Justin Wong: Thanks for the support!!!

Once again, the whole team here at EventHubs would like to extend huge congratulations to EG|Justin Wong for taking home the Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 championship and making Top 8 in Killer Instinct as well, and huge thanks to him for agreeing to this interview with us. Let us know your thoughts on this piece in the comments section.

Image courtesy of Karaface.


akaisora said on July 18, 2014 at 2:35 p.m.

Russian Mafia.

CodeSerial said on July 18, 2014 at 2:39 p.m.

Damn, it seems PR Rog has been cut from the list lol he's still up there imo

HooliganComboFTW said on July 18, 2014 at 2:40 p.m.

Good job resisting to join the Vergil Legion.

Kijui said on July 18, 2014 at 2:44 p.m.

Not top 5 characters, but top 5 players, you might want to change the wording of that, I looked everywhere for "1. Felicia"

MisguidedAngel said on July 18, 2014 at 2:49 p.m.

He also gave his top 5 characters. Did you read the interview?

Madenka said on July 18, 2014 at 2:51 p.m.

He makes lists for both.

OverlordJC said on July 18, 2014 at 2:54 p.m.

Great job for your well deserved win Justin, as well as not succumbing to the urge to join the god forsaken Doom legion LOL. I have seen enough of that character to last me a life time.

synce said on July 18, 2014 at 3 p.m.

Justin was great. I always root for the guy not using Zero or Vergil

umeshoryu89 said on July 18, 2014 at 3:03 p.m.

Congratulations on the win Justin. That was definitely the best Marvel Grand Finals that I have witnessed.

DaveNotti said on July 18, 2014 at 3:08 p.m.

Long Live CTF.
New York City, New York.

Rawiswar said on July 18, 2014 at 3:15 p.m.

I get that Justin Wong is the greatest fighting game player of all time, but no Doom in the top 5 characters? You crazy, J.

DRain said on July 18, 2014 at 3:19 p.m.

Wolverine not in the top 10 best characters...are we talking about the same game here? I can see him not being top 5, but when 2 of the top 5 players have him on their team...

Sweet_Violence said on July 18, 2014 at 3:27 p.m.

"What's the feeling, using a team that is based more on synergy and your own playstyle than individual character strengths, and finally bringing home this huge victory with it?"

Aren't all good Umvc3 teams based on team synergy? Isn't that why there are popular pairings? Because of the synergy between characters.
Justin's team has synergy, sure. But I think him winning with his team speaks more about his fundamentals more than anything. He's just an extremely solid player!

LightSpdAeon said on July 18, 2014 at 3:29 p.m.


MCHAWKING said on July 18, 2014 at 3:35 p.m.

Pretty sure that is a typo, supposed to be "akuma and storm not in the top 10", otherwise the previous sentence about wolverine not in top 5 is redundant.

MetroCityPub said on July 18, 2014 at 3:36 p.m.

Long deserved. I'm also glad ChrisG showed extreme support for the skill of his opponent after the finals were over and I'm not one of his biggest fans.

yes4me said on July 18, 2014 at 3:38 p.m.

Disappointed he was not asked where he practiced to ROFL =D

BumbleBrady said on July 18, 2014 at 3:57 p.m.

You know, many people played Vergil before he was top tier. Some people actually like DMC.

Ruuku said on July 18, 2014 at 3:59 p.m.

Wolverine is definitely not top tier and not extremely popular. Kappa

Kijui said on July 18, 2014 at 4:02 p.m.

Oh, it was AFTER that... Oopsie,my bad, please don't downvote me,I really did look everywhere

MajinTenshinhan said on July 18, 2014 at 4:12 p.m.

Yep, typo. Sorry. Fixed. Thanks.

BaroqueObama said on July 18, 2014 at 4:25 p.m.

Justin played a sub Vergil team for close to a year. Props for resisting Zero imo

EagleBirdMan said on July 18, 2014 at 4:27 p.m.

This is true. Unfortunately it's hard to tell who plays Vergil based on love of the character from DMC3 or if they just wanna win using the best characters. Or both. ):

xBMxSage said on July 18, 2014 at 4:55 p.m.

This is what I like about Justin, while I HATE fighting Wolverine, he's playing characters he likes and that fit his style. I respect that. Same goes for Angelic for having a unique Wolvie team.

Books said on July 18, 2014 at 5:01 p.m.

J's top 5 is good, but you gotta trade Mags for Doom.

HyperGadoken said on July 18, 2014 at 5:05 p.m.

Respect for Justin bringing a true UMVC3 championship to the fgc. These last years with gimmicky teams made the game look like a X-factor spam fest.
Viscant was the first using a phoenix team and relying on Vanilla Phoenix.
Filipino Champ could have taken the title if he didn't use a Phoenix for his harder match ups which i hated.
Flocker used Zero May Cry so you know the problem there.

Justin really did it with a good team with great assists and THC

pandaman64 said on July 18, 2014 at 5:32 p.m.

No doom in top 5? Interesting. Would be neat to hear more from justin on that.

darthvenom said on July 18, 2014 at 6:26 p.m.
(This comment was hidden because it was down voted. You can view it by clicking here.)

I don't love Smash Justin. I don't.

nunoelectric said on July 18, 2014 at 6:44 p.m.

Dont like top tiers. Plays Wolverine

joecee25 said on July 18, 2014 at 6:54 p.m.


"Well, the thing about it is, I have no problem with playing top tier characters. I just don't like how the Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 top tiers work."

Never said he hates playing top tier characters. Reading comprehension is your friend.

ponyz said on July 18, 2014 at 7:37 p.m.

zero may hawkeye
he never uses dante in tournaments

BigFleccs said on July 18, 2014 at 9:35 p.m.

I don't even play marvel any more but I liked Virgil since day one. I will pick top tiers etc but he's just fun to play.

BigFleccs said on July 18, 2014 at 9:36 p.m.

Congrats Justin!

edrigo said on July 18, 2014 at 10:55 p.m.

still want to see him rock more iron fist but the mans run at evo was amazing that's two consecutcive amazing runs to gf. At evo. wow

GoldenTrophy said on July 18, 2014 at 11:01 p.m.

Uhh he used Zero May Cry at Evo vs several opponents and previous tournaments, especially vs Chris G

sdstig said on July 18, 2014 at 11:03 p.m.

I'm actually with you on that too. I still like it, but I think it's a bit overrated. I'm excited for Smash 4 but at the same time, I'm not dying to play it.

And the competitive side of it doesn't really interest me either. I mean, I've watched competitive SF4, MvC3, SF3 3S, SFA3, SFA2, MvC2, ST, Injustice, MK9, UMK3, SC5, SFxT, TTT2, and KI and have been entertained to varying degrees by all of those. But Melee? More like "Meh"lee! Ha! Dumb jokes! But in all seriousness, I don't see what the big deal is. I was at first astounded by the skill and all of the crazy things the players could do, but once that wore off, like it does with all games, it's just not all that entertaining to me. But the other games, even after the "Wow! These guy's can do some crazy stuff!" factor wore off, still did/do.

But what do I know? I'm just another idiot on the Internet like the rest of you!

Coocoopaper said on July 19, 2014 at 12:59 a.m.

(This user was banned.)

Eternal_Flame said on July 19, 2014 at 1:10 a.m.

Quick , but nice interview. I guess that Justin's new top 5. Goes against his thoughts from last year, Where he ranked Doom, Phoenix, Wolverine,Spencer and Viper higher than Nova.

His old tier list.

but its been more than a year so things change.

XxAngelChunLixX said on July 19, 2014 at 1:47 a.m.

Props to him. I feel he deserved it last year too, but I'm not taking anything from Flocker, he earned it too.

But Nova top 5? That's
The first time I've seen that. I feel that Doom, Viper, Spencer, and I'm sure a few others are over him. And as much as I love Morrigan, I don't feel she's top 5, I just don't. I guess I'm just not seeing what everyone else is.

darthvenom said on July 19, 2014 at 6:26 a.m.

I agree with everything you just said. I recognize the immense amount of skill it takes to play Smash effectively in a tournament, and I even watched most of the EVO coverage, but it wasn't for me. I feel like Smash has such a rabid fanbase that any time someone says something different, they get murdered. But at least I'm not the only one :)

I play Smash occasionally with friends either way. I hope in Smash 4 Donkey Kong is better.

Smorgasboard said on July 19, 2014 at 8:16 a.m.

Shout out to PR Rog cause Justin isn't giving him any. Barrel roll.

xShonuffx said on July 19, 2014 at 5:46 p.m.

Ain't gonna lie, this makes me want to jump back into UMvC3 but I can't do it online anymore not with the duplicates and hacks now. I know they can't touch the game but I really wish they fix that at least.

Luckily there is a scene I can go to, might see whats up.

XBOX720P said on July 19, 2014 at 9:24 p.m.

(This user was banned.)

Teags said on July 21, 2014 at 6:32 a.m.

Damn left out his own teammate PR ROG? Who most consider one of the 5 Marvel 3 'gods' daaaang.

yomaaaahval said on July 26, 2014 at 9:23 a.m.

Rog and marn have that daywalker factor to them that makes them dangerous when their risks pay off. The 2 don't strike me as marvel players in the sense that apologyman and rayray are marvel players. Still really good but not into it as much as others, which is prob why justin didn't mention rog even though he's capable of beating the best.


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