Evo 2005 was my tournament debut, and events conspired against me at nearly every turn. That said, I ultimately had an okay time and wanted to offer feedback.
MrWizard, MarkMan, the Cannons, James Chen, Seth Killian, etc. (basically, all Evo staff): I know what a HELL running an event of this scope can be. While there were some problems, I appreciate what you did and generally had fun.
Sponsors: Were a big help, as far as I can determine, in various ways. And hey, I had fun buying a few new controllers while I was there; I’ve been wanting a decent wireless pad for my XBox; thanks Pelican.
The event room itself: Whoever had the idea of setting up water and mints, THANK YOU. I personally feel much better having a little mint to occupy my mind with between matches, so that was very nice. The water was a huge help too. I liked this a lot!
3rd Strike: As my main stick got gutted and I had no spare on me (no space in luggage), I was forced to primarily borrow others. Finally got a good US-style stick and made it to the semi-finals in 3S, not bad for my tournament debut, I figure.
Super Turbo: Still fun a decade later. Pretty much my first time facing humans, and I was playing on a Hori stick (which handles VERY differently from an American style one), so I had a handicap right there. Was fun playing though, and the big-screen matches for this were absolutely fantastic!
Tekken 5: I did okay for someone with maybe 1 hour’s experience with the game. Even had a few people awe-struck by how well my Asuka did in light of that. I’m just glad to see Tekken really has competitive depth.
Glitch Videos: Entertained the hell out of me, I laughed until I cried. Wish I could get a copy of them, especially the SF2 one! Anyone have these by chance, and if so, PM me please?
MLG/Smash Bros: I had fun playing in this, and it’s my understanding the MLG was a big help on the logistics end of having a place to run Evo at.
Vegas: Good venue choice. Moving this to Vegas was what literally let me attend! Please consider doing this again next year, Evo staff.
SFA Generations: Horrible movie. Blake’s Blood, that movie was friggin’ awful! It’s like they TRIED to make it worse than the last SFAlpha anime, and succeeded! I cried until I laughed. You may wonder why this is listed as a ‘Pro’; well, I LOVE stuff that sucks, see. So this was a real treat to me!
Cons/Suggestions for Improvement:
Major Disorganization: I understand, I really do understand, that any level of service provided to a group where the number of service providers exceed the number of service users…is going to have some errors. I sympathize with that. But I personally was afflicted by at least 6 Evo-staff errors (including incorrect info on the CvS2 pools; I got D-d-d-d-DISQUALIFIED for going by what I was told by staff…), and others I spoke to were mis-handled almost as badly.
Now, I’ll take the blame on two of those. Due to schedule conflicts, I withdrew from MvC2 (which I entered on a dare anyway) and GGXX on the night signups were being done. Evo refunded me on the spot (very nice), but still booked me for matches in those two games. Easily sorted out and those two damn well were MY fault, so I’ll say I was honestly only affected by about 4 errors. Still a pretty high count, and I wasn’t the only one. The errors really need to come down in future tournaments.
I believe handling as much as possible before the tournament is ideal. Mail badges out early (I’d be willing to pay an extra $5 on my registration to compensate Evo staff for this expense), etc. This alone would’ve freed up a good, what, 3-4 hours right there? That’s significant.
Paranoid Environment: After a while, I realized I pretty much had to stick around the Evo room for nearly the whole time, for risk of being out of the room too long and getting D-d-d-d-DISQUALIFIED. I have to admit I don’t know how to resolve this, but I feel it’s a significant issue alongside the errors above. It was a major stress factor to me – though I’m full well aware that running Evo is a ‘stress factor’ to you guys one-thousand-fold. Some sort of notification system, or even a reliable schedule, may help here.
Event Room: Yes, this is being listed in both segments. There needs to be some way to seperate competitors from spectators. I had someone bump me during a match, and in the crowd bustle I also got bumped INTO a competitor while spectating; I felt horrible about that. Also, a chair was dropped on my foot during one match. Ow, and moreso ‘ow’ since I wear sandals. Please, we need some way to keep the crowd away from those playing.
Green Valley Ranch: Too damn expensive. For 100+ dollars a night, I damn well expect a TV with AV hookups and some decent soap in my bathroom! What’s with this RF hookup crap? If I wanted that, I’d have brought MY old-ass TV! And for 100 a night, could GVR’s food court PLEASE quit price-gouging me? Thanks, you greedy bastards. Suggestion – Can we move Evo to a cheaper hotel in Vegas? Like, Circus Circus or something? Saving a couple hundred dollars on a cheaper hotel room and tournament venue would be nice. Some might say it’s a loss of luxury/environment quality, but guess what? Due to Paranoid Environment, I didn’t have time to enjoy the fine atmosphere of the GVR. I’d rather have saved the money since I didn’t get to use the atmosphere at all.
3rd Strike finals: About as exciting as watching AI Goenitz fight. In fact, Goenitz vs. Goenitz would’ve differed from 3S finals only in what move was repeated over and over. Crouching Forward into Chun’s SA2 or people went for the kara-throw instead. Yawn. People need to learn something new.
MvC2, CvS2 finals: See above, but replace Chun vs. Chun with complaints about MSP and minor variations thereof for MvC2, and A-Sakura/Bison (Psycho Crusher)/Blanka or minor variants thereof. Yawn, yawn, yawn.
People boo’ing Halo/MLG: Get over it. The MLG was a big help in having a venue at all, and being confrontational asses about it ensure that fighting gamers look like jerks. To those of you who kept quiet, you’ve my thanks. To those of you who boo’ed, grow up. You’re only hurting our hobby, which might I remind you is basically on life support? Think about that.
I had more, but forgot. All in all, I really did enjoy Evo 2005; my first tournament left me with an overall good feeling, despite some severe issues. I hope Evo 2006 will be even better, and I certainly do plan on attending; let that be a testament to how much I appreciate Evo-staff’s efforts this year.