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Playing to Win: Becoming the Champion
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Playing to Win: Becoming the Champion

3.81  ·  Rating Details ·  204 Ratings  ·  22 Reviews
Winning at competitive games requires a results-oriented mindset that many players are simply not willing to adopt. This book walks players through the entire process: how to choose a game and learn basic proficiency, how to break through the mental barriers that hold most players back, and how to handle the issues that top players face. It also includes a complete analysi ...more
Paperback, 142 pages
Published April 24th 2006 by (first published October 31st 2005)
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Laura Marx
Aug 01, 2016 Laura Marx rated it really liked it
It's not quite a self-help book, but not quite a strategy guide either. It's about developing the correct approach to playing competitive fighting games, building the right mindset and approaching play with the right headspace.

With a title like PLAYING TO WIN: BECOMING THE CHAMPION you'd think it was some kind of Machiavelian, Stirnerist, manly pep talk kind of thing, but its exactly the opposite. The mindset you need to develop is, more or less, humbleness. Getting good at fighting games - and,
Ian Stewart
Aug 31, 2016 Ian Stewart rated it it was amazing
This very short book about playing games like Street Fighter, Chess, and Magic the Gathering, at the highest tournament levels is one of the best books I've read in at least a year. It's weirdly entertaining. Especially interesting were the bits about mindreading, or as the author calls it, Yomi, the comparison of chess masters to street fighter players, and learning the somewhat terrible jargon of "scrubs" who decry "cheap" moves. Not recommended to people who didn't grow up playing fighting ga ...more
Jake Forbes
Aug 23, 2012 Jake Forbes rated it liked it
I was introduced to David Sirlin as a game designer, not as a championship Streetfighter player. While the views he compiles in this book have a powerful influence on his design sensibilities, Sirlin isn't speaking to designers with this book. He's speaking to players. Sirlin is articulate, but still has the voice of the arcade -- kind of a douche if you're not in the club. Your mileage will vary based on your interest in his anecdotes. Still, it's refreshing seeing competitive video games treat ...more
Ilya Cherkasov
Feb 20, 2015 Ilya Cherkasov rated it liked it

Самая замечательная мысль -- не быть scrub-ом, когда играешь на победу.

Scrub это такой чувак, который в довесок к правилам игры придумывает себе какие-то чисто свои ментальные ограничения, ведомый может каким чувством благородства (или просто слабоумия). Такие люди как правило проигрывают, а потом переживают, что их обыграли нечестно.

Интерпретация Сунь-Цзы (занимает несколько глав книжки) так же очень понравилась.
Martin Stoev
Jan 11, 2015 Martin Stoev rated it it was amazing
An amazing book that breaks down games to their core, namely systems with rules which you can bend and abuse to win. I leaned a great deal about competitive behavior and what it means to have the goal in mind.

It uses a lot of anecdotes from different competitive games (e.g. computer games, game shows etc.) to get the point across. Even if you do not know them it is still a good read.
Stefan Krätschmer
Jun 02, 2016 Stefan Krätschmer rated it it was amazing
I read this after 1CThe Inner Game of Tennis 1D, and just like 1CThe Inner Game of Tennis 1D is not about tennis, I would say 1CPlaying to Win 1D is not about Street Fighter, but about general winning attitude and philosophy, especially considering many 1CSun Tzu 1D quotes and a quick research of a winning character.
Jun 09, 2013 Anton rated it it was amazing
As a new player, you walk into a tournament usually looking to have fun and have a good experience. Very few players actually attempt to take the little intricacies they have learned and ultimately use it to play to win.. Let's be real now. The usual player is a guy who looks at the box, sees this frivolous karate fighter and the large thighed female Chinese cop on the box art and is automatically enticed.

The game is much deeper than that. In the end it doesn't matter how you won and that's what
John Rinyu
Jan 11, 2016 John Rinyu rated it it was amazing
This book helped my game tremendously. I placed higher in tournaments and learned many things about how to play against an opponent. Recommend this to anyone who plays games competitively.
Mark Sloan
Oct 25, 2014 Mark Sloan rated it liked it
A pretty good book about competitive gaming and what it takes to succeed at the highest levels.
Jun 28, 2012 Cristian rated it really liked it
Amazing book for anybody that wants to reach the top in a game, and even for those that are arguably already there, it can server as a good revision of the things you should take into consideration when playing, and the mentality you should carry if you really want to win.
Apart from that, the author has some pretty interesting anecdotes about his gaming career (centered around fighting games), of other people he has gotten to know with the years, and even about chess champions.
Highly recommend i
Davis Kingsley
Dec 13, 2014 Davis Kingsley rated it it was amazing
A classic.
Feb 06, 2007 Mike rated it liked it
This book is an almost TOO dorky dissection of winning strategies for competitive video gaming. Sirlin goes as far as using quotes from Sun Tzu to support his tacital recommendations.

The author is a competitive Street Fighter player and professional game designer. Playing to Win is a book about just that, how to play not to have fun or be entertained, but to dismantle opponents.

Very short, off the wall different kinda book. If you are gamer looking for some bathroom material, have a look.
Duncan Hendrick
May 24, 2015 Duncan Hendrick rated it liked it
This is more than a book about competitive gaming, but a great resource for game designers as well. The traits and skills Sirlin outlines here should be taken into account when designing/developing a new game to ensure those traits/skills can flourish in your game.
Jun 27, 2014 Weston rated it really liked it
A logical progression of strategies focused on winning. I think everyone in Generation Y needs to some how comprehend that implementing boring but winning strategies is valuable.
Apr 04, 2011 Joshua rated it liked it
This guy's attitude towards winning is why playing competitive games with strangers is generally not very fun.
Juan Bosco
Jul 07, 2010 Juan Bosco rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
El manual para ser un despiadado y eficiente competidor no sólo en juegos, sino en general.
Apr 27, 2016 Stijn rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not sure what I was thinking when wanting to read this. Just No.
Oct 28, 2011 Justin rated it really liked it
An extremely unique perspective on the nature of competition.
Mar 07, 2013 GhostHardware rated it it was amazing
Not just a book on winning at games, but a book on life itself.
Dec 31, 2012 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Avid competitive gamer? Read it.
Nov 07, 2009 Chris rated it it was amazing
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Michał Drawc rated it it was amazing
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Matthew Crews rated it it was amazing
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