How do you balance developing your own playstyle, yet adhering to "proper" character use?

Irrefutably, there is a “right” way to play a character. There are safe pokes, defined approaches to zoning, mixups, etc.

Yet, unless you’re picking on pure tier superiority (which I’ve been told is a completely asinine way to play a fighting game), you picked your character because you can “connect” with them. Eventually, you’ll start finding your own niches with the character and formulate your own approach to a fight.

You could say that your style is developed around proper character use, but then why do no two players play the same?

Because, if the game is deep enough, the “proper” way to play a character keeps developing and changing, so that’s where your own “personal style” comes in.

“How do you balance developing your own playstyle, yet adhering to “proper” character use?”

With enough time and and patience, this will happen naturally.

Let me tell you how you balance it. You balance it by winning and losing. No matter what you learn; if you keep doing it and keep losing, you’re going to stop doing it or you’re going to be a loser forever. No matter what a guide or group of players says. So that’s how you do it. There is no other goal except beating people, there isn’t any other ideal to achieve.

nothing wrong with that though…

I always feel that it depends on the character you play. The better in tune with that character you are, the better you can play how you want and reach that balance.

You just use your brain to play to win, don’t develop a style in mind. Eventually, people will take note of how you like making people jump in or whatever, and word will spread that you’re the type of player who has great defense. That’s only if you’re really good though. No one talks about people who suck, that’s just the sad fact, and the sad fact is that most of us fit this category.