Well, I must say that in my 12 years competing in tournaments of all genres, this was the worst tournament (Evolution 2005) I’ve ever experienced!
Even the time Geoff, Ed and I drove up to Vegas in the Summer for a Second Impact tourney to this shit hole-in-the-wall arcade with no A/C, where it was 120 degree heat (no exageration), the arcade was narrower than a hallway so nobody could move in or out, sweaty and smelly as fuck, and the 64 man tournament was being run on ONE arcade cabinet. Even then, Evo was worse.
Even the time where I drove with my friends: Dan, Josh and Amanda from Tucson to Colorado NONSTOP to compete in a Tekken Tag Tournament the very next day. I got insanely sick while driving there for 20 hours straight. We got there an hour before the tournament started, so I had to sleep and vomit between every match because I was so sick and tired. The people had to wake me up for my matches because I was knocked out from sleeping/puking in the corner of the arcade. Even then, I still consider Evo to be worse.
For starters, Evo was supposed to start at 9AM but did not get under way till about 11AM. Even then, you had to wait in this ridiculously long, Disneyland line just to see what pool you were in which took another 90 minutes. Come to find out that I wasn’t even signed up for one of the tournaments, and the other tournament (Super Turbo) I was pooled up with one of my best friends (Neil, who basically taught me how to play the game) and Mike Watson who is also a friend of mine and also considered to be one of the best ST players in North America. (And also is from LA like I am. Nice!) So that tournament is a lost cause. Now I need to find out why I am not in the other tournament 3rd Strike.
I wait in this other line (the “we fucked you over line”) for another hour and tell them that we (me and my roommate) are not in the 3S tournament. They put us in the last pools and everything is fixed. (pools 66 and 67. At this time I do not know who is in my pool but I’m sure it will be shitty)
ST: 10 and a half hours later, my ST pool comes up but I’m not caring that much since I already know that I’m going to get slaughtered. The pool was: Me, Mike Watts (firend), Neil (friend), unknown player, and a no show. So I got to play three matches and obviously didn’t qualify but it’s fine since I was more interested in 3S. To recap: So far I’ve played 3 matches and 2 of them were friends of mine.
3S: The next day was my pool for 3S and the wonderful fantastic news that the tournament rules were changed from best 2 out of 3 matches to 1 match. (Fucking bullshit!) So any random shit could happen. I come to find out that my pool consisted of Ken-I who is a member of the US Third Strike team and someone who plays at the same exact arcade that I play/practice at. YAY! The pool was: Me, Ken-I, 2 scrubs and a no show. I qualified on the losers side and was advanced to the semi-finals. To recap: So far I’ve played 6 matches and 3 have been against people that I know.
3S SEMIS: The semi-final brackets were posted and low and behold, they have me playing against MY ROOMMATE 1st round! Fucking fantastic! My roommate graciously forfeits the match so that I may move on and I lose to a random Yun that I shouldn’t have lost to. (my bad.) So in total I played a grand 8 matches in which 4 of them were against my friends/people I play against all the time.
I find it really hard to believe that I entered an international tournament with over 1000 entrants from East Coast, Japan, Canada, Korea only to fight against people that I play with on a daily basis. This truly was the most ridiculous tournament I’ve ever been to and I sorely/regretably remember why I dropped out of the tournament scene to begin with. I just wish I would’ve come to that realization before I went.
Taking two days off work to attend EVO - $310.00
Paying for gas, food and hotel rooms - $286. 63
Standing in line to pay your entry fees - $45.00
Competing in a international tournament of 1000 entries to only fight against your friends - PRICELESS