Beginning Friday morning and running through Sunday evening, the annual EVO championship series (short for Evolution) will be held in Las Vegas, Nevada. EVO is an umbrella event that covers all of the major and some of the not-so-major fighting games, giving each game its own tournament or exhibition. This year, EVO will consist of nine sub-tournaments, one for each of the following: Injustice: Gods Among Us, Mortal Kombat, Persona 4 Arena, Street Fighter x Tekken ver. 2013, Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Street Fighter IV: Arcade Edition ver. 2012, Tekken Tag Tournament 2, The King of Fighters XIII, and Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3. In addition to all of these games, there will also be exhibitions for indie fighting games Divekick and Skullgirls, as well as a demonstration of the upcoming box One fighting game, Killer Instinct.
As someone who has very little experience with fighting games, I still find EVO to be a blast to watch. While I might not know the ins and outs of the gameplay and some of the nuances certainly go over my head, I know can still appreciate moments like my favorite video game comeback of all time from a 2005 Street Fighter EVO tournament between Daigo Umehara, who is widely considered to be the greatest Street Fighter player of all time, and Justin Wong, another contender for the position.
There will be three streams via Twitch bringing EVO’s content to you live on the srkevo1, srkevo2, and srkevo3 channels. Viewers will be able to switch between the three of them from Twitch’s EVO 2013 hub. Each stream will have two commentators who know the intricacies of the games and will be able to translate for viewers who aren’t as familiar with fighting games. While the main streams are free, it is possible to purchase a $12 HD ticket to view the streams in HD. All proceeds will go toward a scholarship fund at NYU Game Center for aspiring game makers within the fighting game community.
There was some contention yesterday, when Nintendo announced that they would not allow Super Smash Bros. Melee to be streamed from the competition, despite a fan movement that raised $94,000 for charity in order to bring Melee to the venerable EVO event. After about five hours of massive outrage, Nintendo reversed its stance, allowing the fighting game to be streamed.
The full streaming schedule for EVO 2013 can be found here.
For a more in-depth look at EVO including players to watch and fighting game jargon, be sure to check out this excellent viewing guide over on Shoryuken.
Below you can find my favorite match-up from EVO 2012.
For any of you fighting game fans out there, who are you rooting for this EVO? Personally, I’m hoping to see Daigo sweep Street Fighter IV.