SPIF x LOCUS / by Alex Nguyen



A Look Into the Mind of a Fighter



Locus, a top Smash Bros. player, has always been a player who brings the heat and packs a punch. Predominantly known for his Ryu, Locus continually strives to push himself and become more knowledgeable about his craft. In the time that we've known him, it's been pretty crazy to see how he has grown both as a player and a person, and his genuine love for the game is apparent. Always armed with a smile and a good attitude, it was an absolute honor to be able to sit down with him for an interview and collaborate with him on an exclusive design for SPIF. Check it all out below!  


Photo by  Ferofotos

Photo by Ferofotos

Hey Locus, how's it been going? Thanks for doing this interview with us.

It’s going great! Life’s been treating me very well. Thanks so much for having me!


That's good to hear man, we haven't talked in a while. What've you been up to?

I’ve been doing a good amount of traveling, being in Chicago and Indiana in March, and then Oakland for the start of April, and currently I’m spending time in New York, competing at weeklies and regionals here in the tristate area.


Living the life! You've been spending so much time in the U.S. (shoutouts to smash community housing), how do you balance your time between Canada and the U.S.? There are certain restrictions on the amount of time you can spend abroad if you're not a citizen right?

Honestly, the restrictions aren’t that stringent. From what I understand, I can stay in the states for a maximum of 6 months at a time, and I have to not be trying to make this my permanent residence basically. I spent the month of March in British Columbia when I wasn’t traveling to events, and I’m still paying rent in Vancouver, so that’s still where I’m technically living still!


Do you feel like moving to the U.S. or obtaining dual citizenship is anything you'd ever pursue?

Yeah, definitely in the future. It’s something that’s just a little bit out of reach currently but it’s definitely something I’m looking towards eventually


Nice! Speaking of goals, we're kind of in a weird transitional period for smash, don't you think? A lot of players are kind of waiting to see what's up with Smash Switch before deciding what they're going to do. What are the goals you're currently focusing on in your career both in and out of the game?

I’m trying to get as good as I can with the game as it is. There’s a lot we don’t know about the new game and I hate the idea of taking my foot off the gas when there’s so much up in the air. My goals right now are just to iron out some of the little matchup issues I have and try and focus on concepts that will work in smash games in general, like reaction time and edge coverage.


That's awesome man. I remember first seeing you (and I think this goes for a lot of people) at ZeRo Saga in December of 2016, and it's crazy to see your journey since then. What do you think has changed between then and now, and how do you feel about the game and your own personal growth in general?

I think I’ve come such a long way since then. I played really well at zero saga and I’m so glad I was able to hold my own against such talented players, but I honestly wasn’t even that strong of a player at that point. However, now, through practicing with such amazing players and having the privilege of traveling so much, I am extremely proud of my play. I also feel like my confidence has gotten a lot higher since then, and I’m just a much happier person as well.


Locus upsets Mr. R at 2GGT: ZeRo Saga, 2016 (photo by  2GG Lakitu )

Locus upsets Mr. R at 2GGT: ZeRo Saga, 2016 (photo by 2GG Lakitu)


Yeah definitely. I think you hella stepped up your game since then. Right now you're playing Ryu and Bayo, are you using any other characters for certain matchups or mostly focusing on those two?

Nah, I’m just using them two. I play other characters in friendlies and stuff but nothing but them two in tourney


What inspired you to play these characters specifically? Because obviously you were playing the game before these DLC characters came out. Can you talk a little about how these characters fit with your gameplay and any inspirations from other players you've watched that have influenced your style?

I’ve always been the type of guy that likes explosive characters, that may have a little bit of trouble getting in. I played falcon and ness originally, and as the game progressed moved to those two dlc characters as they’re both better at blowing up people’s stocks with minimal interactions won, provided my reaction time and execution are on point

As far as players that have inspired me, I kinda picked up ryu before really being interested in the highest level play so I didn’t really have any huge influences on him to begin with, but I like thinking I took influences from almost all of the top ryus like Trela, 9B, Darkshad, Takera, and Chanshu. My bayo was shaped from watching a lot of different top players, but I’d say I’ve taken the most from Lima and Mistake as they’ve both helped me a lot with her.


Locus at 2GGC: Civil War (photo by 2GG Lakitu)

Locus at 2GGC: Civil War (photo by 2GG Lakitu)


It's really great that you've been able to use both these characters at such a high level. Your team and sponsors made a good choice. Can we talk a little about them?

Thank you so much, and of course! Circa has been absolutely amazing to me, helping me get to basically anything I wanted to go to this past half a year. It’s really unfortunate that they’re closing shop after Evo.


That's super unfortunate, it's great that they're riding it out to the end and have been continuing to help you attend events. Is that what you're mainly looking for in a sponsor? The ability to travel?

Yeah, I’m honestly not asking for too much at this point. I absolutely love being able to travel and play this game the way I have been, and I just want something that will be able to allow me to do that. I’ve always been frugal with how I travel, and that lets me ask less of orgs too! I just want to be able to keep playing the game.


Alright let's get into this collab. This design is specifically tailored around you as both a player and a person. Obviously the shoryu and the "SPIF" on the back are inspired by Ryu/SF which is the character you're known for but there is also detailing around the fist that has significant meaning as well. Can you explain that to our readers?

I received a necklace as a gift from my mom when I was pretty young, and it’s something that’s become something of a good luck charm for me, and it’s stuck with me for a long time. The charm on the necklace is apparently a symbol of power, and it’s meaning is “to rule the world”, which kind of keeps me aimed towards the top. The area around the fist is inspired by that charm!



Yeah I'm really glad we were able to work that in. And for the people who don't know, what's the origin/meaning of your gamertag?

It’s a reference to locus of control which is a concept in psychology. If you have an external locus of control, you believe that outside forces control your life, life is predetermined, destiny, etc. And internal is the opposite, where everything that happens is a result of your own actions. My tag is a reminder to me to have an internal locus of control and know that I can do anything if I put my mind to it.


Honestly one of the coolest gamertag origins I know. Well thank you for taking the time to do this interview with us, and keep killing it. Is there any social media or other places you'd like for people to follow?

If you’re looking to keep up with me, my twitch and twitter are probably the best places to find me, and they’re both LocusSK. Thanks so much for the opportunity and for the interview!


Be sure to check out our limited edition SPIF x Locus collab in our shop, running from 5/21 - 6/4. Shirt orders will ONLY be available during this two week period, after which all shirts will be made and shipped out. Half of ALL profits from these shirts go directly to Locus himself, helping with travel and competition expenses.