I am aware that some of you may not be up to date with the news in the fighting game community, so let me brief you a bit on this topic before I go into further detail.
EVO is the biggest fighting game tournament of the year. The best fighting game players come in from all over the world to compete for big money. And depending on the game, the prize pool could range up to $25,000. This year they decided to let the fans decide which would be the eighth and final game allowed into the tournament (the number of games at EVO 2013 would then be raised to nine with the release Injustice: Gods Among Us) The way the tournament organizers would decide this was by having gamers donate money in the name of each game. Then, the money would in the end be given to Breast Cancer Research Foundation. So if you wanted game X to be added into the tournament, you’d donate money towards that game and in the end, the game with the most money donated towards it would be added to EVO 2013. They had numerous games up to donate towards, such as Guilty Gear XX Accent Core +R, Capcom vs. SNK 2, SFIII Third Strike, Online Edition, Skull Girls and both Super Smash Brothers Brawl and Melee. The game that ended up accumulating the most donations was Super Smash Brothers Melee at $94,683, with $225,744 all together. Needless to say, the fact that the fighting game community raised nearly a quarter of a million dollars for breast cancer research is absolutely awesome.
Year in and year out they broadcast this event online, in 2011 over 2.2 million people watched the event. It goes without saying that this an enormous event, which gets millions of eyes on fighting games and the fighting game community which in the end are the people who are most crucial to a fighting game — they are the people who are going to play it and keep it alive after its release. It’s a testament to how strong the fighting game community can be. I mean, who would have thought that Super Smash Brothers, a 12-year-old game would’ve won?
This was all announced a few months before Nintendo made the decision to start taking down all “Let’s Play” videos of their content on Youtube. So with the event coming this Sunday, what does Nintendo decide to do? They decide that it wasn’t okay for them to stream Super Smash Brothers Melee at EVO. Let that sink in for a bit, they decided that even though Super Smash Brother Melee, a 12 year old game garnered $94,683 to be played at the worlds biggest fighting game tournament, that it should not be allowed to be broadcast to the public.
Fortunately after mass complaints from fans, Nintendo has done a 180 faster than Microsoft did on it’s 24-hour, online check-in and DRM stance. Luckily for the people that donated, the participants and fans of Evo in general they decided to allow their product to be viewed by more fans than their entire E3 Nintendo Direct conference.
This all points to a more pressing issue with Nintendo. Why would they think taking down Let’s Play videos and not allowing Super Smash Brothers Melee to be streamed at EVO would be a good idea in the first place? This speaks to how out of touch Nintendo is with reality and technology in 2013. From the Wii having one of the worst online interfaces ever, seriously friend codes were so awful, to them launching the Wii U with their biggest game being New Super Mario Bros-U. Listen, I love New Super Mario Bros-U, but the fact of the matter is: it’s nothing new (despite the title). The same game was essentially released on both the 3DS and the Wii before.
This is all besides the point, let’s all look at the bright side, we are going to be able to watch elite level Super Smash Brothers Melee this weekend and it’s going to be awesome. We’re glad Nintendo didn’t blow it.