The struggle for professional Super Smash Bros players in 2019 continues with news this week from another multi-game FGC (fighting game community) tournament that fans and players alike are dismayed about. CEO 2019, which ironically stands for Community Effort Orlando, has chosen to run best-of three for Smash Bros Ultimate not just until top-eight, but in all matches until the top three are decided.
The reasoning given was somewhat logical, although with Smash Ultimate having been out more than six months there is a wealth of data available to sift through if you really wanted to run it as god intended, with best-of five. However, it does highlight the lack of facility these events have to actually accommodate every game and community without annoying any of them, which is a product of the lack of revenue the FGC generates.
Injury to insult
On the other hand, it could be argued that if you're going to run a competitive event, it would be logical to give the most competitive conditions, or accept that you don’t have capacity. The likes of Blast Pro in CSGO have faced backlash for their casual, non-competitive formats, and BO3 until top three would be considered a joke at most locals, let alone a supermajor.
This news comes on the back of the revelation that Super Smash Bros Melee would not be appearing at Evo 2019, despite regularly being one of the most watched games year on year at that event. Again, this is down to the reality of space at Evo, and the fact other developers, and even Nintendo, are willing to pay to be at Evo and support their game in a way that has never been true for Melee.
Sadly, these stories are a continued result of certain scenes, and Melee in particular, being unwilling to adapt and change to fit the modern world of esports. While the likes of Dota, CSGO and League thrive, Smash is being outdone by games like Rocket League and even Farm Simulator for how the esports scene is run and supported, and risks becoming an anachronism in the brave new world where everyone else gets rich.