Getting You on Their Level: A GOML 2017 Preview

After a very successful introduction to the Get On My Level series in 2016, Smash 64 will make its return to Canada’s largest major in 2017. While this year’s iteration may be missing some pieces from the previous year’s captivating story lines, it has more top players, more international talent and more wildcard potential.

Top 8

What’s New

Half of the projected Top 8 for this years Singles tournament are making their debut in Canada.

The Smash community fan-favorite, Isai, will be making his way to Mississauga, and although his results in recent years have fallen, some die-hard fans still believe he has the talent to fill the hole left by the absence of SuPeRbOoMfAn. While his Fox ran into trouble recently at SNOSA, Canada has plenty reason to be terrified of his presence. They surely have not forgotten Beast 7, where Isai’s Link came back from Loser’s bracket, and dissected Revan’s Kirby in Grand Finals with surgical precision. If Revan can fend off a red-hot Zero, and Isai can avoid another early upset, which everyone has become quite familiar with recently, the two may run back the instant classic two-set Grand Finals. If Isai has his way, he’ll find himself up against a contender from the States’ other neighbor.

Mariguas will also make his way into the Greater Toronto Area this weekend, coming off an exhilarating performance at SNOSA III in Santa Ana. Early on it seemed he would be left in the wake of ïXï | Zero’s magnificent run. However, following his loss to Zero, he dominated Gyaki, swept Dext3r and the rematch against Zero, and also reset the bracket on Fukurou in Grand Finals. Mariguas has outplaced Isai at the events they’ve both attended in 2017, yet they have not faced off this year. After narrowly missing out on his first ever major victory at SNOSA III, Mexico’s top talent will be anxious to mow down his competition and vanquish his demons, the biggest of which may lie at the end of his bracket.

This pursuit may be aided by the fact that Mariguas will likely find himself on the opposite side of the bracket from Zero. Although he was unable to finish the job on loser’s side at SNOSA III, Zero surely left his mark, striking fear into the heart of Mexico, showing he can go mano a mano with their finest. Taking his next step towards being a true top level threat, Zero will be looking for any opportunity to build on his unreal resumé. He may even earn himself rematches against Isai and Mariguas, however, he will likely encounter Revan first. In 2017, Zero has tumbled with Fukurou, HandsomeTom, and Mariguas’s Kirby secondary, and while he has struggled against high-level Kirbys, it would be no surprise to see the young Falcon/Pikachu main come back from the lab ready for the challenge.

Also making Mississauga one of his many stops on an international tour is Brazil’s Kort, fresh off of several weeks of practice in the United States’ Midwest. On his most recent trip to North America, Kort scored a big upset against tacos at SSC 2016. In the past year, he has overtaken Banze for #1 in Brazil, and has fully developed his Pikachu, Captain Falcon and Yoshi to complement his notorious Link. Kort also trekked into the heart of the Peruvian Mecca of Smash 64 and most stacked city in the world, Tacna, and earned an impressive 7th place at Tacna All-Stars 2017. Over the past few weeks the outspoken captain of the CAFIL crew has won Masters of Midwest Smash, and placed 2nd at Called Out!, only behind SuPeRbOoMfAn. Kort now has his sights set on the rest of Canada in Boom’s absence.

Returning Threats

SSBMTL | TR3GTheZ made huge waves last year, notoriously bringing back his set against Derek, down 1-2 in games, and 1-4 in stocks against Derek in the Pikachu ditto. His monumental comeback fueled a run of his own, taking down fellow Canadian Revan, earning a rare win over long-time nemesis KeroKeroppi, and showing flashes of next-level potential as Fox against SuPeRbOoMfAn. This year he finds himself faced with a new set of players to overcome if he wants to keep the Cup in Canada. While he has yet to face Isai in bracket, Montreal’s leader has worked his way closer to victory over Mariguas in their recent meetings, coming one stock short of victory in a thrilling, tight set at Genesis 4. If TR3GTheZ can build upon strong performances over the past year, he may stand a chance of defending the homeland.

Last summer, Revan looked poised to ascend to the next level of players, as he made a name for himself taking down top level Yoshis, and earning a Top 8 spot at the largest Smash 64 tournament ever. 2017 has not treated him well, as the cerebral Kirby main from Ottawa struggled in his limited major appearances. The fierce young competitor is fully expected to bounce back to his winning ways, aided by the comfort of his home turf. While he’s gotten closer to defeating his rival, TR3GTheZ, with each set, he’d rather not have to fight a fellow Canadian early in bracket. He’ll likely face Zero early on, but it’s no secret Revan will be eyeing a rematch with Isai, daring him to bring out the Link once more.

Although he started off the year strong, BarkSanchez has tapered off a bit in recent months. In the past he has proven capable of taking sets off of top level players, he has also seen himself surpassed by up and coming players such as Dtan, Zero and Joshi. Bark’s element of volatility could add to an interesting bracket, where he is likely to face unfamiliar opponents, such as Mariguas and Kort in Top 8. Bark has missed Top 8 two of the past three majors, but after being cut short by Derek in bracket last year, he intends to make up the difference with a strong performance deep into bracket this time around.

Although the unexpected presence of Derek cut Fireblaster’s bracket short last year, Connecticut’s father of Smash 64 and resident Yoshi main should have a more clear path to top 8 this year. One of 2016’s most frequent travelers, he has made his appearances less often in 2017 but has had strong major placements this year. Despite being the victim of a few upsets, and has not quite made as much ground on those ahead of him as he’d like, he has strong wins over ranked players sHEERmADNESS and NTA, as well as hot rising talents KD3, HAMMERHEART, and Yobolight. A very driven player, Fire will not pause at the opportunity to break the status quo and shake up the bracket.

The Wildcards

What’s New

While Isai has cemented his status as Smash 64’s ultimate element of unpredictability, ïXï | Fray has taken Derek’s place this year as GOML’s wildcard. With years of netplay experience under his belt, his level of talent is no mystery to followers of the online Smash 64 scene. Fray’s high level Ness play has drawn comparisons to long-time veteran Firo, with some believing the netplay warrior may have even surpassed him. While that has yet to be proven, Fray will have an opportunity to state his case in his first console tournament against a stacked roster of competitors.

Returning Threats

While the Smash 64 community both inside and outside Canada are familiar with Snorlax, most cannot predict what he will do at GOML 2017. In the true spirit of a wildcard, the Kirby/Pikachu main character locked to Donkey Kong at GOML 2016, throwing the entire venue in a loop. A capable player of the entire cast, the Toronto native could potentially sneak into the Top 8 with his most proficient characters, or perhaps snag a few upsets with the bevy of options at his disposal.

The Sleepers

What’s New

Accompanying Kort in his voyage north is fellow CAFIL member, the barefoot Brazilian Lorenzo. Following his breakout performance at Boss Battle 2 where he earned 7th place, the solo-DK main has continued to build his resumé. The nomad from Brazil earned 13th at Tacna All-Stars 2017 and 4th at Called Out!, unfortunately being eliminated by Kort at both events. The first solo-DK main to make Top 8 in a North American Major will be eager to toss around some Canucks this weekend if he can avoid running into his fellow Brazilian yet again.

Even Matchup Gaming’s lone Smash 64 representative, EMG | Darkhorse, will be making his first trip north beyond the wall. Baltimore’s resident Falcon/Puff main, a perennial sleeper, can be a terrifying presence when he finds his zone. Darkhorse is coming fresh off of a dominant performance in bracket at MVP3, with clean sweeps against Yobolight and Robert, and a bracket reset in Grand Finals against BarkSanchez. The bearded Baltimorean will surely be hunting for a soul-crushing Falcon Punch-combo, one that is worthy of his Clip of the Week videos.

Returning Threats

It may seem crazy to call YBOMBB a sleeper, but the veteran puff main needs to pull off an upset if he wants to return to Top 8 again this year. In recent years he has also added a Falcon and Yoshi to his arsenal of characters, which he may need if he hopes to contest Fireblaster or BarkSanchez for a spot in Top 8. Despite his long periods of absence from the major tournament scene, anyone caught sleeping on the Toronto veteran will surely be punished.

A promising young talent from Ottawa, Janco has been steadily improving over the years under the tutelage of Revan. Janco’s best tournament yet unfortunately came at the expense of his mentor, as Janco sent Revan to losers en route to an impressive 9th place finish at Lets Go! Although expecting him to take down Mariguas in winners side might be a bit much, he may see some familiar faces in a potential losers run if he can pick up from where he left off in Baltimore.

The Other Guys

What’s New

Michigan will be making the short trip across the border with a solid core group to visit their neighbors in Toronto. While they are without their captain, Scoback, and their outspoken region representative, Rocket, they aren’t pulling any punches. They will be led by Andykins and EG, both of whom have recently surpassed their captain following years of dominance. Andykins made Division 1 at Lets Go! and scored a big upset against Darkhorse, while EG has steadily made a name for himself as a top threat in the Midwest. Both players are expected to face off against the wildcard, Fray, and with years of Ness experience under their belts, they will take full advantage if he happens to falter. Jsmirk has been gaining ground in the Midwest as well recently, and with Velocity Jones, Cracker Jones and Hack among the crew, Michigan hopes to make a mark in their neighbor’s yard.

Returning Threats

Most of Eastern Canada showed up in force the previous year, and they plan to do so again in 2017.

Fck Vwls was the catalyst for Derek’s losers run in 2016, pulling off the big upset that knocked him out of winners bracket early. Like most of Eastern Canada, he’s maintained a fairly quiet 2017, although he’s made trips to Florida and Michigan to show he’s still dangerous. JOKER, formerly known as B link, has gone on somewhat frequent hiatuses over the past few years. Despite this, he’s still one of the top threats in a stacked Toronto crew, an impressive feat. Preston has been faced with some tough brackets recently, but snagged a strong win against one of the Midwest’s best, Dogs_Johnson, at Called Out!, giving him reason to feel good coming back to his home turf. Sextc and Captain Fabulous, formidable foes from Ottawa and Montreal respectively, could sneak in an upset or two as well if they don’t go down styling.

64 Free For All: Get On My Level 2017

By: James “JAMJAR” Jacobs

The 64 Free For All is a question session with some of the biggest names in Smash 64. 6 questions, 4 top personalities. Today we have four major names from the host country of this event. The rising star who took names at Let’s Go!: Janco. The creative mind behind some of the best video content in 64: Preston. Possibly the most dynamic player in Canada: TR3GTheZ. The TO of the event with an unorthodox character: NessKhalifa.

1. This will be the first console major for online legend Fray. How do you expect he will perform at this event?

Justin “Janco” Cahoon: I personally hope Fray does well, but I’m not overly certain if he will play as well as he does online. I believe he uses an XBox controller, which from personal experience isn’t the worst thing to adapt from. If he has the adapter and has been getting used to the differences between console and online, I think he could do quite well, and definitely make Top 8.

Preston “Preston” Kwan: Although a performance like Derek’s at last year’s GOML would be  crazy, Fray might fall short of that just because he plays Ness. With that being said, I think he’ll do well as long as he’s used to the movement on console, which he said he was practicing. I would be surprised if he didn’t get Top 16 and he has the potential to make Top 8.

Marco “TR3GTheZ” Jardak: Fray is very good. I don’t know how he will do though, seeing as he plays with an XBox controller online and this will be his first console event.

Vincent “NessKhalifa” Polsinelli: I think he will do quite well. I think it will be similar to what Derek did last year. He’ll be this online warrior showing up for the first time and will stumble at first. Maybe not do too well out the gates but he’ll shake off the struggeles, get some of that pressure alleviated and have a really strong finish. Looking at his bracket, I predict he will get 9th or 5th depending on how he does against Kort!

2. GOML has positioned itself in a rather unique way, as it is a rare major that will be hosting all 4 mainline Smash games. What do you think of this move? Is it smart or unwise?

Janco: I like the fact that all the games are there, as it allows people that would normally only play Melee or Smash 4 to try the other games, and vice versa. I think it benefits all the games to be at the same tournament, and could help the growth of each game.

Preston: I’m indifferent on whether it’s a smart or unwise decision. GOML is allowing all 4 Smash games to get the spotlight and I commend them for doing so.

TR3GTheZ: I don’t want to talk poop about Brawl but I think it’s objectively bad. Bad game.

NessKhalifa: It has its pros and cons. I think sometimes when SSB64 is a part of majors like this it can get forgotten and not get the attention it truly deserves. It all depends on the major and how much focus they want to give us as an event. If the SSB64 tournament is done right at a multi-game major of this size it does great things for exposure. Melee, Brawl and Wii U players may enter a 64 event or catch top 8 on stream or in person and may fall in love with it like we all have.

3. Despite having a ton of top talent, Canada’s only major for 64 has been GOML for the past 2 years. Do you think this is enough of a showcase for the country’s up and coming talent? Or should something different be done to foster the scene?

Janco: I don’t mind having only one big tournament, since Canada’s population is severely lower than the States, but is about the same size. It also makes sure that everyone attending brings their A-game, as it’s the only big tournament a lot of Canadian players attend. I would have liked to see more players from the states attend, however.

Preston: Having GOML as Canada’s only major for 64 is enough to showcase our talent. However, I think another major would help us grow as a country even more. I can see either Montreal or Vancouver having the best chance at having the most success hosting a major for 64. Whether it be a 64 exclusive major or a multi-game major (Battle of BC maybe?) is another question.

TR3GTheZ: Idk man. Now that Boom is in Toronto, there isn’t any relevant competition outside Ontario/Quebec NO OFFENSE!

NessKhalifa: It’s rough up here for a Smasher. The scene is almost non-existent out west and even worse on the east coast. Only notable scenes are from Toronto, Ottawa and Montreal. All these scenes have strong weeklies and Toronto has a strong monthly getting occasional visits from Montreal and especially Ottawa. But when it comes to majors the numbers just aren’t there. A lot of US players either don’t have passports or can’t be bothered to come up here. I don’t blame them though as Canada doesn’t come down to the US as often as I think we should. GOML is the only multi-major in Canada for 64 to leech onto, but keep your eyes open for a potential 64 exclusive coming early next year for Canada.

4. Last year’s GOML saw Derek have an epic run through losers, taking out quite a few notable players on his way to 5th after a close loss to TR3GTheZ. Who is positioned to break out this year in another impressive way?

Janco: Derek is an absolute beast, so I don’t think we will get such an impressive run of that caliber for a bit from a relatively unheard of player. In terms of people I think could break into that next level, I’ve always thought Cwic-beam, a Yoshi from Ottawa, has had the potential to start doing really well and make a few upsets, so that would have to be my best bet.

Preston: In terms of being a relatively unknown player and having a breakout performance, I can see Fray or Janco having the potential to replicate Derek’s run from last year. I also see Lorenzo and Darkhorse making impressive runs.

TR3GTheZ: Fray.

NessKhalifa: Well I already mentioned Fray above, but Janco is going to turn some heads at GOML. He got 13th last year and an impressive 9th at Let’s Go! Dude is only 19 and is getting good at a fast rate. This is the tournament where everyone knows his name.

5. What will be the Top 8?

Janco: My top 8 would probably be 1. Isai 2. Mariguas 3. Z 4. Revan, 5. Zero 5. Bark 7. Fireblaster 7. Janco

Preston: 1. Isai 2. Mariguas 3. Zero 4. TR3GTheZ 5. Revan 5. BarkSanchez 7. Kort 7. Fireblaster

TR3GTheZ: Winner will be Isai or myself.

NessKhalifa: 1. Isai 2.Mariguas 3. Zero 4. TR3GTheZ 5. Revan 5. Fray 7. Fireblaster 7. BarkSanchez

6. Why is Canada better than the USA?

Janco: Canada is only better if you look at our top 5-8. Anything past that and it sorta just falls apart. The USA has far more diversity in terms of good players. If you look at the top 50 in both countries, Canada would get washed. We need to step up our game when it comes to our depth.

Preston: We have mounties and they’re basically centaurs.

TR3GTheZ: USA should stick to Melee.

NessKhalifa: We got ketchup chips, Coffee Crisp, poutine and better quality strip clubs and weed.

Operation Desert Smash II Preview: Hostility in Havasu

By Jamie “JAMJAR” Jacobs

Operation Desert Smash II (ODSII) has returned to the desert shores of Lake Havasu City, Arizona. In 2015, Cody “Daniels” Daniels made a big move for this small Arizona scene, inviting a number of top players out to his house for a Super Smash Bros. 64 retreat weekend. Daniels flew all attendees out and planned a slew of activities. This groundbreaking event spurred on the massive recent growth of Havasu Smash 64, allowing a paradise of Smash to sprout up in the desert. This year, the event has been expanded greatly, as more than 50 Smashers are congregating on this sprawling lake town for a weekend of both fun and competition. Throughout the weekend, there will be the standard events of a doubles and singles bracket, as well as more interesting side events such as a YOLO bracket, low-tier tournament and Salty Suite.

The Tournament

The amount of talent attending ODSII is absolutely incredible. Among the headlining players are Dan “SuPeRbOoMfAn” Hoyt, Eduardo “Tacos” Tovar, Joey “KeroKeroppi” Speziale and more. Both serious brackets are sure to be filled with high quality Smash. SuPeRbOoMfAn looks to continue an incredible run in 2016. After losing the first major of the year in Genesis 3, the Canadian legend has gone undefeated the rest of the way, including winning the largest Smash 64 tournament of all time: Super Smash Con 2016. Tacos will be looking to finally take him down. People have been questioning his resolve in his sets against the No. 1 player, as he seems to lose his will to play after losing a game. Despite this, he looked strong against SuPeRbOoMfAn at Shine a couple weeks back, though he did end up dropping the set after losing his serious attitude. KeroKeroppi has had a bit of a down year after his meteoric rise, losing sets to multiple players he has defeated in the past. However, he promises to take those losses and learn from them, in order to become a stronger player.

Also attending are fan favorites Josh “BarkSanchez” Brody, Thomas “Revan” Dykes and Derek “Derek” Bancarz. BarkSanchez is perhaps the most traveled player in Smash 64 this year, making frequent trips all across the country and to Canada. His voyages have even taken him to Havasu for a weekend tournament, funded by Daniels in order to allow his scene to train and learn from a high-level player. Bark has had some trouble against a few of the top players attending ODSII and needs to rebound from a couple of disappointing finishes at majors. Revan has been on the rise recently, earning a Top 8 finish at Super Smash Con 2016. This Canadian Kirby main has been working tirelessly to prove the little puff ball is still a force to be reckoned with, as many in the community have been claiming Kirby is on the decline. Derek looks to have another impressive performance at his second major ever. At GOML 2016, the formerly online-exclusive player made a legendary losers bracket run. After falling early in the pools round, Derek tore a path through the losers bracket, defeating such players as Michael “Nintendude” Brancato, Javier “Fireblaster” Romero and BarkSanchez. This performance has earned him much praise in the scene, though some are hesitant to crown him before he proves it at a second major.

The Fun

ODSII will also include many side events, some planned and others improvised. One such planned event is the Smash 64 favorite: the YOLO bracket. In a YOLO tournament, all stages are legal and items are turned on high. The players choose random characters and stage, then proceed to play a one stock, one game set. This form of bracket has long been popular at Smash 64 events, as the moments created in them are completely unique to this format. Another event that should be happening is the low-tier tournament. In this format, the players that are seeded highly for the standard tournament are required to use one of the five lower tier characters. Other than this caveat, this bracket runs normally, though it is fun for lower seeded players to have a chance against their elite opponents. The Salty Suite, occurring Saturday night, will include many salty clashes. A couple of these highly anticipated matchups are Derek vs. BarkSanchez and Daniels vs. Eric “Smurf” Clapp. Derek and Bark will be having a rematch of their epic set at GOML, a set which Bark is sure he should have won. Keep an eye on this one, as Pikachu dittos are often the most nerve-wracking matchup in Smash 64. Daniels and Clapp have long had a beef on the internet, as Smurf has talked down about Daniels’s Havasu scene. This score was supposed to be settled at SNOSA II in June, but due to mitigating circumstances, they rescheduled for this weekend. On the line will be $500 and Daniels’s prized white fedora. Other matches will surely be streamed, as rumor has it David “Shears” Shears will be challenging all comers to Luigi dittos.

ODSII is more than just a Smash 64 tournament. This is great opportunity for new and upcoming players to learn from the best in a more intimate environment. Without the time constraints and hectic venue of a major, players can more easily discuss and learn the intricacies of the game. Make sure to tune-in to twitch.tv/havasusmash all weekend long, as the stream will be running practically 24/7.

Super Smash Con Preview

By: Jamie “JAMJAR” Jacobs

Super Smash Con has returned, bigger and better than ever. This year’s event marks another milestone for the Super Smash Bros. 64 community, as it has eclipsed 300 entrants for the first time in its history. Elite competitors have traveled to Chantilly, VA to battle in the first game of the series. As last year’s event was the beginning of the recent rise in popularity of this old game, many view this year’s edition as another watershed moment. Tournament organizer’s are giving Smash 64 a chance in the limelight, as the singles bracket has been given a prime time slot for Saturday afternoon. Here is everything you need to know going into what will be an epic event.

The American Defenders

Isai “Isai” Alverado has recently emerged from his own self-imposed retirement, as he will be competing in his third major of the year. Isai has not yet looked like his old self, though he has promised to play high tier character against his biggest rivals, perhaps hinting at a return to form for the legendary player. Eduardo “Tacos” Tovar has been extremely impressive of late, pushing Isai to the limit at Genesis 3 and even defeating him at SNOSA II. However, he has had trouble against his most consistent opponent: Dan “SuPeRbOoMfAn” Hoyt. He has yet to defeat the top player in North America, failing even to force him to a Game 5. Joey “KeroKeroppi” Spezoli has seemingly taken a step back in recent times. He has still failed to defeat the two men he has been striving for: SuPeRbOoMfAn and Isai. Also, despite his claims to never lose to someone who he has previously beaten, Tacos has beaten him twice this year. A few other competitors also seem to be closing the gap, including Justin “Wizzrobe” Hallett, who has repeatedly pushed KeroKeroppi to the brink. Wizzrobe has been on quite a tear this year, as he forced SuPeRbOoMfAn to a Game 5 at Pound 2016 and easily won a fairly large tournament in Smash’N’Splash 2. The young master of the entire Smash series may be the one to break through and win a major with his dynamic Yoshi.

KeroKeroppi is not the only elite member of the Spezoli family, as his brother Tommy “Stranded” Spezoli is often cited as having the best tech skill in Smash 64. The fast and relentless master of the entire cast has often failed to convert that superb skill to results, though this may have changed. He won Apex 2016 in dominant fashion, hopefully signaling his braggadocious attitude will begin to be backed up by results. Two local favorites will also be in attendance, as LD “Fox” (real name omitted) and Josh “BarkSanchez” Brody will be looking to defend their home turf. Fox’s combo-heavy Fox broke onto the scene in force last year after a number of years dominating the online scene. However, his dependence on a finicky Xbox 360 controller adapter has often lead to his downfall, as the hardware can fail him at key moments. Despite this, he has been adapting quickly to console play and its unique properties. BarkSanchez has had a very active, traveling all across North America to train with the various growing scenes. His year has been marked by various highs and lows, with great finishes at Pound 2016 and SNOSA II, but also had a disappointing finish at Get On My Level.

The North American Foreigners

SuPeRbOoMfAn looks to continue his run of dominance, as he has only lost sets to foreign challengers in the last few years. Besides Genesis 3, where he lost two sets to Wario, the Canadian has won every tournament he has attended in North America since Apex 2014. Having finally put the debate over who is best in North America to rest with a manhandling of Isai at SNOSA II, SuPeRbOoMfAn can now set his eyes on the title of Best in The World. A dominant victory at Super Smash Con could push him over the edge. Fellow Canadian Thomas “Revan” Dykes is coming off a strong victory at Summit 2016 in Toronto. As he overcame a tough matchup in defeat BarkSanchez’s Pikachu twice with his Kirby, Revan looks to prove that Kirby is still strong in today’s meta. Arturo “Mariguas” Hernandez has also had an impressive year, with strong finished at Genesis 3 and SNOSA II. He pushed Isai to the limit at both events, despite falling short both times. This man from Mexico looks at this weekend’s event as an opportunity to truly breakthrough and prove his worth. Jaime “JaimeHR” Rodriguez will surely make a splash this year, as he will be teaming with SuPeRbOoMfAn in doubles, likely continuing the dominant run of the best team the game has ever seen. Team Mejor will have some strong competitors, but they have shown in the past that strong competition has failed to challenge their dominance.

Worldwide Invaders

With an epic funding effort by the Smash 64 community, top players will be attending from four non-North American countries. Some of the best from Japan, Chile, Brazil and Peru will be in attendance.Wangera (real name omitted) appears to be the best of the bunch. This master of little seen Jigglypuff was very impressive at Genesis 3 as he double-eliminated Isai. However, he struggled against SuPeRbOoMfAn, even being 5 stocked in the Top 8. This quiet Japanese assassin will certainly impressive the crowd again, as he further adjusts to the differences in the American version of the game. Legendary combo master Prince (real name omitted) has come out of retirement for this great tournament. His combo videos are among the greatest any game has ever seen, forcing players to analyze their own gameplay and push themselves and the game to their limits. Bonobono (real name omitted) is likely the greatest Yoshi player in the world. This character has seen a recent rise in the meta, as new avenues of play are being explored. In his first trip to America, Bonobono will likely show us just how far Yoshi can be pushed.

Andre “Banze” Luiz Almeida has traveled from Brazil to once again compete in America. Banze is likely the best player in Brazil, sporting a highly impressive Pikachu that can compete with the best our country has to offer. With the weight of his country on his shoulder, Banze needs a better showing than his 13th place finish at Genesis 3 to prove that Peru is not the only dominant force in South America. The combo-heavy red Link of fellow Brazilian Thomas “Kort” Keselik will also be in attendance. Though some question if his style of play can translate to success in larger events, Kort feels confident that he will impress the crowds. For the first time ever, a Peruvian player will be competing on American soil. Alvin “Alvin” Leon Haro, the best player South America has to offer, will finally have the opportunity to clash with all the top players in the world in one room. With perhaps the fastest reactions of anyone in Smash 64, Alvin is one of the favorites to take the entire tournament. If anyone can upset SuPeRbOoMfAn, Alvin may be the one. With the attendance of both Japan and Peru, Super Smash Con marks the first time these two countries will ever get to play each other.

Super Smash Con’s Smash 64 event will be the most epic ever seen. Competitors from all across the globe have come together for what can be a true jumping off point to help the scene explode in popularity. Though only one player can win it all, many strive for that difficult to reach first place finish. Tune in to twitch.tv/vgbootcamp on Friday and Saturday afternoon to catch all of the action.

Super Smash Con: Vendor Highlights

By: Jamie “JAMJAR” Jacobs

Super Smash Con will be a rare opportunity for Smashers of all varieties to experience the many facets of Smash outside of the games themselves. Fans of Smash 64 will have the chance to buy many unique items ranging from posters to overclocked consoles, to listen to the prominent members of the premier 64 podcast, or to replenish their stock of high quality controllers.

The Super Smash Bros. League has commissioned three pieces of art for this historic tournament. Chris “Studstill” Studstill will be on site selling these custom made posters by the head of SSBL Art and Design, Sandy “Tangerine” Tang. “Ready to Fight?” depicts the classic imagery of Dreamland, the primary legal stage across the entirety of 64. “Legalize” is an image of Hyrule Castle, the highly controversial stage that some players wish to see legalized for competition once again. “Champions, SSC Commemorative” depicts the top 4 seeds of this legendary tournament and their main character. These well-crafted pieces of art will be sold at $15, $15 and $20 respectively, or $40 for all three. SSBL members get $5 off. Poster holders will be on hand, while the vendors hope to have a few options for frames. Studstill notes, “It’s not about the sale, or profit. These are at cost. What it’s about is bettering the experience for all players of SSB64.” Tangerine also has a series of websites hosting her other art: FacebookThe Seventh StationInstagram and Tumblr.

Jim “$$$ Jim $$$” Orris is going to be heading up a panel for some of the prominent Smashers who have appeared on his well-known podcast: The Dream Land. The panelists will be $$$ Jim $$$ himself, Ben “Bacorn” Corn, Joey “KeroKeroppi” Spezoli, Stef “Pidgezero_one” Kischak and Jimmy “Jimmy Joe” McGurl. The goal of this panel will be to drum up interest in our scene as well as inform the masses about the context of some of the most intriguing rivalries. $$$ Jim $$$ wants you to know, “If you’ve ever been interested in watching 64 but don’t know where to start, we’ll help explain the utter insanity that is about to go down at Smash Con!” The panel will be held Friday, 8/12, at 10 A.M. EST.

Andy “Mr. Sir” Vargas, the founder of ENKKO, an initiative to create more sustainable stick parts for our controllers, will have a booth to show off and explain his work. This hard working entrepreneur will be set up near the Smash 64 section of the venue. Mr. Sir will have giveaways, an N64 and CRT to try out his prototypes, a list to pre-order parts and further info on his endeavor. “We are dedicated to providing the best replacement parts for the Nintendo 64 controller. After getting our Kickstarter funded, we were able to re-engineer the parts and replicate the original joystick. Soon we will have the bowl and the gears ready which will endure thorough endurance testing. We also have plans to help out the 64 scene with sponsorships and pot bonuses. All in the works.”

cksjlojuyaeu4fl
Prototype ENKKO stick. Photo credit: Andy “Mr. Sir” Vargasw

Kris Ianieri, wife of the man behind The Lab in Philadelphia, will be heading up a booth selling some interesting items. They will be offering both overclocked and HDMI modded consoles as well as tons of controllers. The Lab team will be promoting their stream and venue, as well as meeting their long time fans. Their booth is located in the main venue hall, not in the vendors hall. Also of note, The Lab team will be raffling off a high quality Audia Technica E70 earbuds, normally a $399 value, along with having multiple deals for a variety of other headphones or headsets. “We are so excited to meet our viewers in person and get a chance to socialize and play with smashers from all over! We are thrilled to be able to be a part of this and to spread our mission to bring people together through eSports!”

 

pcfn81pw
Multi-Shine Designs logo

Multi Shine Designs, headed up by Jason Kodiak, will be in attendance selling their multitude of wares. In regards to Smash 64, Multi-Shine Designs specializes in controllers of all colors. W
hile they have many controllers available, their stock will surely sell quickly due to the excitement surrounding this event. They will have a CRT and console to let potential customers try out their controllers, as each player has unique preferences in sticks. Here is a Google doc with a list of their extensive stock. “Multi-Shine Designs strives to change the way players purchase controllers. Our goal is to work with the customer to help them find what works best for them so they can perform to the best of their abilities.”

Dane “The Protagonist” Howard has recently begun a venture of creating uniquely overclocked consoles. Over the past month, he started a venture to create overclocked consoles that are easy to work as standard ones. Included in this set up are a light indicating when the console is in overclocked mode, a single switch to enable the feature and a fan. Consoles will be sold at $90 and in limited numbers, as many of his consoles are already preordered. While he will not have a booth, Protagonist will be around the venue with his wares at the ready, though he notes it is likely easier to hit him up on Facebook. He also encourages any Smasher to bring a broken overclocked console, as he will be repairing them over the weekend for $15. Protagonist is very serious about his endeavor, as he believes, “Operating an OC console should be as simple as a normal console.”

Resurrecting Super Smash Bros. 64

An interesting peek into the recent revival of Super Smash Bros.

Filthy Casual

Across the state of Oregon, groups are making their way to Salem on a rainy morning. Some are from universities and greater metropolitan areas around the state. One group even makes the four hour drive with five people in a sedan, loaded down with energy drinks and controllers. Through Facebook these individuals have connected and planned to meet at a regular looking house in a neighborhood of the state’s capitol.

In a garage lined with six televisions paired with six Nintendo 64s, they follow specific rules in a double elimination tournament to determine who is the best Super Smash Bros. player in the state. This is the Oregon Smash Community, a small, but dedicated group in the network around the country that still plays the oldest game of the Smash series competitively.

With billions of consumer dollars pouring in annually, the video game industry has evolved to a world of…

View original post 1,605 more words