Once upon a time, I was teaching a friend how to duel in Age of Wushu
. She was easily frustrated by things, and she expressed to me that she felt as if everyone had superhuman reflexes compared to her. Because she was a beginner, I couldn't just convey all the complexity of mind games to her. Explaining all the different options (beyond the basics
), weighting them, and explaining the opportunity costs of each was not really an option. She was having trouble even with slightly advanced stuff
(which is totally normal), but she also lacked some of the natural "killer instinct" that allows some of my other friends to duel.
At the same time, I had been fighting Zyden, one of the most skilled duelists in English-speaking Age of Wushu
. He actually does
have near-superhuman reflexes. Earlier that day, though, I had hit him with a very slow-animating feint that he normally interrupts with a stun. Normally, his reactions are superhuman, but there are some times when they aren't. It's not a matter of "off day," either. He just wasn't prepared for me to do what I did right at that moment.
I told my friend, "Outside of a moment, you can only react." Immediately afterwards, I realized just how important those words were.