Toxic is as Toxic Does
This past weekend at EVO 2018 Super SMash Brothers for Wii U appeared for what is likely to be the last time on that stage. While there was plenty of good to talk about, there is also plenty of bad. The crowds at EVO went through two stages of being a great crowd and a horrible crowd. This is all due to one character, Bayonetta. This character on her own turned a spirited, intense crowd, into an angry mob that overall left a very embarrassing look on the community overall.
Moths before EVO happened it was announced that this would likely be the last time that Smash 4 would be showcased. It was well known that with a new game on the way this current game wouldn’t last long. Many times through the tournament it felt like a celebration of a great game. Close matches and big upsets paved the way for a fun and exciting final. Which it was, until it wasn’t. The grand finals was a total disaster. Crowds booing and chanting obscenities plagued the finals. It was a real embarrassing look for those who care most about this video game. Up until the Bayonettas outlasting everyone else the crowd was awesome. During Panda Global’s MVD’s match there were opposing chants that blended into one, essetially becoming a call and response for both players. Moments like those elevated the competition and made the match significant for not only the players, but those watching.
Where things went wrong though was the grand finals. I’ll admit, I turned off the stream after MVD lost his match because I had a feeling that it was going to be a Bayonetta final. I was just as disappointed with the end result as the rest of the crowd. However, the crowd crossed the line with chants like “Fuck Bayo” this is the biggest fighting game event of the year and the smash community made their game look bad. Booing a competitor for their character choice is also wrong, this was this game’s last chance at looking great and the finals washed all of it away. I wasn’t happy about seeing the same character for every match of the grand finals, but there are better ways to go about expressing one’s displeasure about a certain character.
Looking forward, the most encouraging tweet I saw from this weekend came from Rivals of Aether creator Dan Fornace who said, “…I’d bet a lot of money the Smash Ultimate development team was talking about Bayonetta all morning.” This is more than likely very true. While making the statement in the worst way possible, it was effective in getting the point across that Bayonetta is strong enough to the point that she is hurting the overall popularity of the game.
There was no better stage to shit the bed than EVO 2018, and boy did the Smash Community shit the bed on this one. Hopefully this message has been received and Bayonetta’s power will be a little more in check for the next game. Nintendo is reluctant to go all in on Esports but they have been showing more signs of listening to their audience. This was a huge statement made by many people all at once, and there is going to be no better example of the displeasure than this past EVO, lets hope both the game balance works out better, and the fans deal with their displeasure better. Also, serious congratulations to Lima, your 2018 EVO champion. Those are just my thoughts though. What are yours? Did you enjoy EVO? Are you okay with the booing? What do you think is going to be revealed in today’s direct? Let me know in the comments down below!