As Evo approaches, more and more interesting developments are taking place. Evo is both the largest, and longest running major fighting game tournament in the world. If a game is primed for innovation or if records are to be broken, this is the event where it will happen. The world of competitive fighters has always had a strong fan base. 2016 Evo seems to be the event where everyone agreed it’s our time in the spotlight.
The announcement that Evo would be held in Las Vegas at the Mandalay Bay Events Center left many excited. It also left just as many fighting game fans nervous. Sure, games like League of Legends and Dota 2 can pack arenas. Yes, we know we are obviously not alone in our love for 1-on-1 virtual mayhem. However, packing an arena as big as the Mandalay Bay is a huge undertaking.
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Tickets for all preferred areas quickly sold out. With a record number of entrants for several high-profile games, filling Mandalay Bay doesn’t seem to have warranted the worry many fans were initially feeling.
EVO, MEET ESPN
As reported last week, ESPN signed on to broadcast the finals of Evo’s Street Fighter V tournament. The giant network will be showing the matches both on TV via ESPN2, and on WatchESPN (their live streaming app).
ESPN has been dipping their toes into the esport world for the last several years broadcasting Heroes of the Storm and Dota 2 tournaments in the past. They also have opened a new esports vertical on their site. Adding fighting games to the list of games broadcast opens the possibility of new fans and more advertisers. Both things that the fighting game community could use in the fight for legitimacy.
CAPCOM PANEL, “EXCITING NEWS”
The most recent of these big Evo announcements is that Capcom is going to be holding a panel during the Evo event. The event will be held on Friday, July 15th 10:00 AM at the Las Vegas Convention Center – Central Hall N101. This is for those who are going to be in attendance at the actual event. No confirmation has been given on whether or not the event will be viewable via stream. I mean, this is Evo. I would guess it will be streamed somewhere. If a live stream is not available, I have no doubt the panel will be up on YouTube ASAP.
So what is on the docket for this panel? Street Fighter V has been seeing staggering growth. Many major tournaments are experiencing record-breaking attendance and entries. According to Capcom, the panel will feature: Street Fighter V content updates, developer updates, a Capcom Pro Tour discussion, and a Q&A session.
Unfortunately, all other information is minimal. Who is the Q&A session with? What updates can we expect to hear about? Who will be included in the Pro Tour discussion? All of these questions are still answerless. Seeing as the event is less than a week away, I have a feeling none of the questions will be answered between now and the panel.
The only information Capcom gave us other than the location and time, is that there is going to be “exciting news.” All gamers have heard that term before. Typically “exciting news” turns out to be a mediocre announcement or an official announcement of info we already knew. Hopefully the exciting news is more than “Street Fighter is still doing great!”