Howdy. I've been playing quite some time now and so my alternate picking is pretty solid, but I've stumbled upon an area I seem to have overlooked: downpicking alone.

Basically, after learning load of string skipping songs from bands like Protest the Hero and BtBaM and such, I've come back to learning some less super technical songs like Master of Puppets and some Trivium stuff. Thing is, I've watched how these songs are played and it's looking like a downpicking affair, but at a speed equal to alternate picking..? This kind've thing:


Basically, I can play these songs alternately picked (which occasionally becomes sloppy), but if I try to play them as they're supposed to be played I'm only about half the speed I usually am. So, would it be good practice to exercise my downpicking until it's up to speed with alternate? Surely that'd benefit my alternate speed in the long run too right?

Yo Homes, To Belair
Well, honestly there isn't the 'right way' to play it, you know? If you're used to alternate picking and it sounds good, then do it. I mean, if someone could down pick as fast as other people alternate pick I wouldn't tell him to change anything either.
Tonight, we stagger out from the basement...

I'm sick of not having the courage to be an absolute nobody.

...Or fall to our deaths from above
How is your up picking? At one point while working on my alternate picking I decided to isolate up picking and downpicking. My downpicking was ok, but my up picking was absolutely terrible. I felt like someone who was just starting out on guitar. So I decided to work on my up picking a little bit every day. It really helped my alternate picking a lot. You might want to check that out. As for downpicking, I was getting enough practice from playing songs (metal, punk, etc), but straight up picking is something you wouldn't naturally do, unless your name is Paul Gilbert.
...half the speed I usually am. So, would it be good practice to exercise my downpicking until it's up to speed with alternate?

No, it isn't really possible to. Alternate picking is just about twice as efficient, so it's twice as fast. Do by all means practice downpicking, but don't expect it to be as fast as alt picking. Ever.
In the video you linked - Surely they are alternate picking on those riffs? I dont even know if it is possible to downpick that. I always though gallops etc were alt picking only for example is it possible for anyone to play metallicas battery strictly downpicking?
that trivium video is all alt/galloping

i gallop using \/ \/ /\ \/ strokes, but pure alt is fine if you can do it.

check out 'when all light dies' or 'like light to flies' if you want some trivium downpicking stuff