Recently I got a wonderful opportunity to get an exclusive interview with Tap, otherwise known as eyeheartlovetap. Michigan’s best Project M Yoshi and one of the best PM players overall. Ranked 9th in the state, Tap is clearly a force to be reckoned with.
As with most text interviews, I will be represented in BOLD. If you like this and want to see more interviews, make sure to bookmark this site and tell your friends because Melee Mania is THE site for exclusive MI Smash content. Enjoy 🙂
COLESLAW: Being a top PM player in Michigan, what went through your head reading the statement recently made by the PM development team?
Tap: Well, when Dirtboy shared it with me in the chat he kept saying “This isn’t a joke”, but I still just didn’t believe it. It seemed so sudden. Then he shared a whole bunch of other things like the website being down and such. I think that was everyone’s reaction at first. It happened so fast. For a couple hours I was just thinking about what’s going to happen to my game. Did I just lose everything I worked so hard on? Am I going to lose all my best friends, even if it isn’t immediately? Do I move to Melee? I was really lost for a bit. I felt like the game was dead. Then I wasn’t so worried about that, and I was really focused on why it happened. I was really curious as to what happened. I think the way the PMDT [Project M Development Team] came out with it, it was rushed and too “secretive” and not collected, and that’s why everyone was freaking out the way they were. But then as more time passed, I started thinking, “Why does it have to die? I have my Wii, I have my SD card, Nintendo can’t stop me from playing it unless they literally take these things away.”
So I relaxed a bit. I was still going to play PM. And I think everyone kind of came to that conclusion as well. I don’t think we lost too many people, and Melee players are excited to play with no updates. So it didn’t end up hurting our community too badly, I think. The only thing that still kind of gets to me now is there are some characters that still need balancing, but, Melee is obviously a little unbalanced and it’s been fine, so again, I’m not too worried. The statement was just a bump in the road for our strong community.
Well said, I think the main thing that has kept the PM community together throughout this whole venture is the passion for the game. Like you said, Melee hasn’t had any updates since PAL’s release so I think PM will be fine.
I wanted to get your thoughts on how PM is being treated by TO’s. With Nintendo’s recent involvement in the scene, what do you think will happen to PM being featured at Nationals?
I think that so long as Nintendo and Juggleguy aren’t a part of it, PM has a good chance of appearing alongside Melee. PM has it’s own stuff though, or at least it feels that way to me. Like Smash and Splash felt very PM based, along with Show Me Your Moves 16, and I feel like it’s staying that way.
There are are definitely a lot of PM focused tournaments still thriving. What would you say makes the PM community different than Melee’s?
I think the PM community has a more open mind in general. And I think that we are a bit more patient and a bit more understanding. We have 40 matchups to learn. Melee only has a few that are necessary to learn, like the top 12 probably. So we just kind of accept that we have that challenge of learning our own characters, all the different stages, all the Brawl tech, and then all the matchups. And when I see a Melee player come to PM, the USUAL response I get is “that’s jank”. Which, sometimes they’re not really WRONG, but they act like there’s no answer to a lot of things. I also get a lot of “autocombo” and “free” and “there’s nothing I can do” which is very strange to me. But this must come from not caring about the game, otherwise they’d put some thought into what actually happened and think of a solution. However there are some fantastic Melee PM players, like Lucky, Kels, Hungrybox, Plup, etc. They’re all very open minded and kind to the community. I think they like the challenge of learning new matchups and such. So yeah, I think that PM is more open minded, and that’s what makes us the most different.
I know for a lot of them they just like the extra cash. And really I don’t blame them. They usually have to earn it, and at least learn something, adapt, whatever. So I love that. Some just enjoy both games, and that’s great. I think the main switch now is because of no updates.
Money is something that doesn’t come easy with Smash. Lately, Smash as an eSport has been growing exponentially as players and tournaments are getting sponsored. Do you feel that PM players could get sponsored more in the future as well?
Probably not, due to legal issues I guess. I’d love if I were wrong though. PM will always be grassroots, I believe.
When you first started out, did you cycle through Mains? What made you decide to stick with Yoshi?
Well in the beginning I was going to play Young Link in Melee. I always played him as a kid and I just really love his tools, even today. Then I watched aMSa play, and I just wanted to play Yoshi so bad. A friend of mine showed me Project M and I had no idea what it was. It felt kind of like, wrong to me. I felt bad that I liked it more than Melee, maybe because Yoshi is (or, was) better in PM, I’m not too sure. But once I saw aMSa do this crazy parry technique I just thought it was the coolest thing in all of Smash, so I picked him up, and never dropped him.
I’m glad you mention aMSa because he is my favorite player actually! Are there things he does to influence your play or do you have your own unique style?
When I played Melee I was obsessed with the parry, because I knew that’s what aMSa was using to win, mostly. But that wasn’t working out too well and the parry was different and is now nonexistent, so really I was forced to play differently just because of PM. So no he doesn’t influence my play too much
Where would you say Yoshi would fit on a 2016 hypothetical PM tier list?
Ehh it’s hard to say, maybe like right in the middle? He can compete with some of the high tiers but loses to low tiers, it’s weird. Weird matchups for a weird character. So yeah, like 25 probably.
Have you encountered any other good Yoshi’s in Michigan? How about Nationally?
I’ve played Tombo and Zubat on netplay, we go about even. The Yoshi ditto is super dumb. Right now I have the best results undisputed though. Really those two are the only other Yoshi’s I respect.
One thing that makes aMSa such a polarizing player is not only his success with such a historically overlooked character, but his personality. To a lot of fans, he IS Smash . His expressions, pop-offs, and smiley attitude make him a wonderful person that many look up to. Do you think there is anyone similar to him in the PM community?
Actually, no, not that I can think of. I don’t think I know a single person with that sort of attitude. He really is one of a kind.
I think this will be our last question, what is something you’d like to accomplish by the end of 2016?
I want to be #1 in Michigan, and a well respected player by everyone. I want to be Junebug level.