Another week, another Smash breakdown. This week, we dive into the impact of COVID-19 on Smash tournaments big & small.
Welcome to the twelfth edition of GGRecon’s weekly Super Smash Bros. breakdown! Tune in every Friday for a quick-and-dirty recap of all the news worth knowing in the competitive Smash scene. (By the way, apologies for missing last week’s update—I was on vacation.)
Unless you’re currently living under a rock, you’ve probably been swept up in the deluge of warnings and jokes about the 2019 novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19. Concerns over the spread of COVID-19 have led to the shutting down or delaying of many leagues and circuits in the worlds of both traditional sports and esports—including the NBA, MLB, NHL, CDL, and LCS—and Smash is no exception. Here’s a list of Smash events and circuits that have been cancelled, or postponed, because of the virus:
Regional or major tournaments:
Full Bloom 6, originally scheduled for the weekend of March 28
We'll be back
Emerald City 9, a Pacific Northwest regional scheduled for last weekend
- Pound 2020, along with all other Smash World Tour events scheduled for March and April (see below for more details about this)
Pound is cancelled, all registrations will be refunded
CEO Dreamland will not count for points on the tour
As a parent of 3 kids, someone with a wife with a weakened immune system, as a person myself with Asthma, and with many elderly relatives, this is the right call.
Although Alex Jebailey was unable to cancel CEO Dreamland, a Florida major, for economic reasons, many players pulled out of the event due to COVID-19. In order to avoid serious losses, Jebailey opened up a fundraiser for players who want to support the event without attending:
Weekly events or locals:
Hax’s Nightclub, the New York City weekly
i'm crying for the first time in years. paradise came and went
- Nimbus, a Southern California local
it is time for the melee high rollers, ballers, shot callers, and mogul movers to put together some wild high-stakes netplay tournies and showmatches
All Boston-area locals are also suspending activity after this week, with local events around the country sure to follow suit as COVID-19 reaches previously untouched areas in the United States
The Smash World Tour announced yesterday that it would be suspending all Platinum and Gold events during the months of March and April in order to fight the spread of COVID-19—though Silver opt-in events will still be occurring at their organisers’ discretion
Additionally, the Panda Global Rankings have officially frozen so as not to incentivise top players to travel during the pandemic.
Depending on the length of the freeze, this may lead to only one ranking at the end of the year.
As the pandemic continues to spread, it’s all but guaranteed that more tournaments organisers will make the decision to delay or cancel their events. The good news is that this gives regions an opportunity to experiment with netplay locals!
ZeRo has his own team now
Don’t worry, ZeRo fans—the Chilean streamer is still a member of Tempo Storm. But this week he announced a new venture: the formation of Team ZeRo, an organisation that the former pro will use to help underrepresented players travel to major events and show off their skills to larger sponsors.
The team will fund its sponsorships through the production of merchandise and content. Its first sponsee is WaDi:
The UK (well, most of it) bans wobbling
The suspension of the Smash World Tour may have taken some wind out of the sails of the wobbling-ban movement, but the movement scored another victory last week, with the tournament organisers of Britain voting to ban the Ice Climbers’ infinite technique.
To ban wobbling: 13 votes
To keep wobbling: 2 votes
Abstain: 3 votes
2 people voted to hold a public vote instead
The main reasoning was to align with a global standard ruleset.
Citing the standard ruleset of the Smash World Tour, 13 of the 18 organizers who voted on the poll did so in favour of a wobbling ban. Technically, no TOs from Scotland or Northern Ireland were involved in the vote—but wobbling was already banned in Scotland, and it’s likely that all tournaments in the UK will comply with this ruling going forward.
Believe it or not, there was only one roster change this week, with Hackoru leaving Mazer Gaming for free agency on Saturday.
Clips of the week
To round out this wrap-up, here are a few of the funniest and flashiest clips of the week for both Melee and Ultimate. Enjoy ‘em—and be sure to check in next week for the third edition of GGRecon’s weekly Smash breakdown!
Link for best doubles partner