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Doomkid

So, what exactly IS a "pro"?

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I've seen the term thrown around a lot, and it sort of got me thinking, what exactly constitutes someong being a Doom pro, or a pro at anything at all, for that matter?

I'd say the general consensus is, someone who wins basically every deathmatch or duel they're in. But what about the singleplayer "pro's", do they count? What if someone couldn't get a frag to save their life, but never dies in SP? (this is unlikely, but you know what I mean.)

How about if someone absolutely sucks at the game, but is an amazing mapper, or could recite any bit of Doom trivia from memory - are they a pro, or is that something else entirely? What if they ping 400, and the other player pings 50, and they win by only a slim margin. Is that a sign of a 'pro', in a way?

It gets into so many ridiculous levels if you start splitting hairs. What if someone using a 360 controller absolutely creams someone using mouse+keyboard? Where do speedrunners fit into all this?

Obviously all of this stuff boils down to opinion, but I'm really curious to hear other Doomer's thoughts on what constitutes a "Doom pro" in your own eyes.

(On a side note, a good example to use is Street Fighter II. Some people are hailed as "pro's", but if you take away Ryu/Ken and give them a controller/joystick that isn't to their liking, they are absolutely fucked. Regarding SF2, my thoughts are, a player who can kick your ass with any controller, with any character on any [acceptably accurate] platform is a real Street Fighter pro.)

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Doomkid92 said:

I'm really curious to hear other Doomer's thoughts on what constitutes a "Doom pro" in your own eyes.

Dictionary.com said:

pro [proh]
adjective
1. professional.
noun
2. professional.
3. the pros, the professional athletic leagues, as of football, baseball, or basketball: He's sure to be signed by the pros.

Origin: 1840–50; shortened form

A "Doom pro" must be someone who gets paid to play Doom, or whose income is dependent on Doom in some other way. Everyone else is just a hobbyist ;)

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Yeah, pro almost always means professional. But i cant imagine there is money in Doom competition. There would need to be spectators. I'm sure in Doom's case it is used to separate an elite group of players from normal hobbiests

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Aside from the literal definition, I'd consider any one on this or this list to be a "pro," though I think it's a really silly word to use in this context.

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Pro means skilled person. It's arbitrary but I'd say anyone who can get through singleplayer on UV or NM are pro enough and in multiplayer anyone who consistently wins deathmatches or scores highly above the average player is a pro.

"Professional" CAN simply mean an expert amateur (who doesn’t earn money) and does not necessarily mean someone who does it for a living and that's by far the most prevalent usage today.

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Archy said:

Aside from the literal definition, I'd consider any one on this or this list to be a "pro," though I think it's a really silly word to use in this context.

hey, I can do 0:05 on map01 too!

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j4rio said:

Being me, duh.

...and SAV88, and Ancalagon. Those guys are fucking crazy! Rizera's pretty good too.

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DoomCollector said:

"Professional" CAN simply mean an expert amateur (who doesn’t earn money) and does not necessarily mean someone who does it for a living and that's by far the most prevalent usage today.

Its an American anachronism, most likely a direct result of their abbreviating the word and then using it out of context.

R.I.P the English language - sodomised to death by American pop culture.

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DoomCollector said:

I'd say anyone who can get through singleplayer on UV or NM are pro enough.

I'd say anyone who could get through the whole game on NM would be more master than pro.

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Archy said:

...and SAV88, and Ancalagon. Those guys are fucking crazy! Rizera's pretty good too.

Don't forget Kyle McAwesome, Dew, Gusta, Tatsurd and 1ntru, but I would agree with SAV88 and Ancalagon into the list, those guys are stunning to watch.

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I'd say Adam Hegyi is far better than everyone you just listed, just less known due to his activity. J4rio, SAV88 and Ancalagon are the only players I feel could challenge the old COMPET-N gods, especially SAV88. He optimizes his UV-MAX/FAST runs like Adam Williamson optimizes his UV/NM-speedruns. MAX runs are hard to optimize, but SAV88 does it.

Tatsurd and Kimo though are very good Doomers, and are approaching god-like status. 1ntru has a lot of potential but I wouldn't rank him up there yet.

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In many ways I think Kimo was better than Tatsurd, though their categories (speed vs max) are not very comparable.

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DaniJ said:

R.I.P the English language - sodomised to death by American pop culture.

QFT!

A pro earns a living doing what others consider a leisure activity.

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I think the whole idea that "pro" means someone who is skilled at something comes from the common saying that goes something like "Dude! You are a pro! Way to go!". But that is still only a way of comparing someone's skills to the real professionals. When I was a kid and someone did something cool on a skateboard then someone might tell him he is a "pro" but everyone (at least back then) pretty much knew it was only a form of flattery and was not an actual title that had been magically bestowed upon them. I think this is where the misconception comes from and where some of us might have a hard time defining what a "pro" is.

If we are having a discussion about a pro baseball player there should be no confusion that we are talking about a professional player who makes money by playing the sport and not some 15 year old who can hit a home-run. In this case skill might be required to be a pro but skill does not automatically make one a pro. The same goes for pro gamers. Usually professional gamers compete in front of spectators and there is some kind of monetary reward for playing and an extra reward for winning (possibly only for winning). Starcraft and starcraft 2 are the best examples of this right now. They are real pros. There are enough spectators for marketing and commercials to fund events which trickles down to the players.

That all being said, I think it is okay to call a skilled gamer of any niche game, who plays in organized events, who also has any number of spectators could potentially be considered a "pro". Perhaps their payment is an ego boost? I would personally never call a Doom gamer a pro until it became their profession to play it but it looks like a lot of us would. So, *shrugs*

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Professional Doomers usually can play Max runs and speedruns of all kinds of Doom maps in a fast time, no matter it's easy or hard. Here are some of the professional Doomers:

Tatsurdcacacaco: Also known as "Doom god", he's a very famous Doomer among Doomworld, also one of the very few Asian Doomers.
Kimo Xvirus: He usually do speedruns, but his time is incredibly fast!
Okuplok90: Another Doomer who's very good at movements, whether he's cheating or not, no one cares.
Nevan(Megasonic023): Nice!
Ancalagoon: A pro on slaughter maps.
j4rio(Armane15): A pro on huge maps and slaughter maps.
Qaatar: Perhaps the best Doomer I ever seen, he's Chinese actually.
Evocalvin: Very good at movements, but we missed him. :(
SAV88: Crazy as hell, very good movements as well.
Memfis: Very nice Doomer, I really appreciate his Max run on Skepland Map02, that map is hard and terrible as hell.

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In French, pro or professionel is defined as either someone who has a paying job *or* someone skilled at something, and quick googling seems to suggest this is also the case in English.* Why is this even a debate? Dictionary definitions and common usage trump etymology.

It's not like this is arbitrary either. On average, a professional is more skilled at his job than an amateur. It makes sense to tie the idea of greater quality to the concept.

*On that note, DoomUK, you've just outprintzed printz. When a definition for a word directly points you to another word, you are meant to look up that other word's definition, and understand it as the definition of your first word. It should be especially obvious when your first word is an abbreviation of the second word.

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The OP asked what being a "Doom pro" meant to the individual. I chose to go down the etymological route. Just because the word "professional" has taken on a silly alternative definition doesn't mean we have to adhere to it. A pro/professional will always be someone who does something for a living, to me, and I don't give a damn what the dictionary says.*

*Speaking of qualms with the English language, internet vernacular doesn't belong anywhere near dictionaries, while many great words have senselessly fell into disuse over time. I can't speak for the French language or its dictionary, being a monolingual oaf, but I imagine the same kind of fate has befell your native tongue's tome of reference.

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One post ago, you seemed to believe online dictionaries were relevant, what with quoting one directly. Of course, back then your misinterpretation of the way dictionaries work made it seem like its definition fitted your preconception.

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Phml said:

In French, pro or professionel is defined as either someone who has a paying job *or* someone skilled at something, and quick googling seems to suggest this is also the case in English.* Why is this even a debate? Dictionary definitions and common usage trump etymology.

Its being debated because it is only in American-English where "pro" carries this alternative second meaning. It is however beginning to enter common usage in England and this rather irks me because we are being forced to accept a redefinition of our own language.

I fundamentally disagree with you that dictionary definitions/common usage trumps etymology because this means there is no true definition of any word in any language - it depends who you ask. Which by definition undermines the very concept of a commonly understood language.

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Everybody who has said a professional gets paid for their work, is correct. Everyone else will attend detention.

And no Breakfast Club shenanigans, either. I'm onto you.

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Daiyu_Xiaoxiang said:

Memfis: Very nice Doomer, I really appreciate his Max run on Skepland Map02, that map is hard and terrible as hell.

That run was made by skepticist, I just posted it. I thought I made it clear. :\

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Hehe, what an interesting discussion.. I found myself more amazed by the lost words than the original topic. I thought it was obvious given the "in your eyes" statement that I was using the term colloquially ;) Really this thread boils down to my own personal curiousity than anything else. On a side note, have there ever been large-scale paid tournaments for Doom, back in the day even? I remember hearing about them all the time, but never mention of pay for the winners, it would be something else to see a paid Doom tournament.

I'll also throw my own opinion out there, regardless of strict dictionary definition. If I ever meet a speedrunner, who's good in survival, deathmatch, duel, and who knows almost everything about doom, I'd definitely consider them a "pro". Thanks for the Compet-N lists by the way Archy!

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Honestly, I'm an american and have never confused the word "pro" to mean "skilled". It might have to do with the cultural region you grew up in so i can't really speak for every american but in my state I really don't think it is confused. This is a pretty large country though and cultures really do vary much more than you could recognize from watching american movies.

I don't mean this as an attack on anyone because I don't think it's a big deal (I honestly had no idea anyone thought "pro" actually meant skilled) but where I live I think you would seem uneducated or at least confused if you were to use the word "pro" in this way in a sincere conversation.

Edit: @Doomkid92: if there were enough spectators perhaps there could be a monetary reward for winning in some kind of Doom competition. I highly doubt it though.

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Phml said:

One post ago, you seemed to believe online dictionaries were relevant

Relevant yes, but not a final authority governing our dialogue.

Notice how the entry I quoted makes no mention of this alternative meaning of "pro", either, even if their definition of "professional" encompasses it. Heretics.

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Actually if I hear a "pro baseball player" I NATURALLY think of a career player.

I think pro has come to be more of a compliment or expert synonym in gaming specifically because until recently there hasn't really been any e-sporting or progaming.
And historically there are billions of baseball players and up until the 2000s the majority of people haven't been interested in gaming.

2011 in Sweden we had more computers than people in Swedish households and were spending 20 hours a week by computers on average, 88% of people above 12 have internet access, 69% of all people use internet daily, 50% of three-year olds use internet, 9 of 10 of children player any sort of videogames and 49% of all adults (in 2011, today it's higher), a third of young girls have their own blogs etc..

Nowadays StarCraft, StarCraft II, Street Fighter IV as well as the latest and most popular WarCraft mod (LoL/HoN etc), Call of Duty game and Halo game are actual sports that people can make a living on.

I read in the newspaper the other day that some guy made half a million crowns ($100'000) in 6 months of progaming... I think it was about a Swedish guy otherwise they wouldn't have mentoined it.

In gaming people say "you're pro" whereas in other sports people would say "you have pro skills" probably because of internet culture and abbreviations.

By the way I think the ADJECTIVE "professional" relates less to being a career professional than the subjective professional. The two words are the same though but I don't think the adjective is nearly as careery.

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"pro" in an informal competitive (or wish-it-was-competitive) context, such as those found in online games: usually a self-righteous, self-defining asshole with an insecure attitude, where bragging/dissing/flaming others usually is more important than any actual skills. Even better if skills are indeed above average, and frequent noob "pwning" occurs, but they never need to be put to the test against a real opponent, thus reassuring their manliness and e-shaft properties (length/girth).

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