By Woolie Madden;
On weekend of June 4th and 5th, East Coast Canada’s strongest came out to clash at Montreal Annual Tournament VIII, a long running major in the Canadian Street Fighter scene and the north-most event participating in the Evo 2011 Tournament Season. The rivalry between Canadian scenes continued as players in attendance included Montreal’s own Chi-Rithy, Snafoo and Freddy Loco, while Ontario brought JS Master and Eric Hai. They were not alone however, as fierce opposition came from across the border: Empire Arcadia’s EMP_Jago, EMP_Dieminion, Team Spooky’s TS_Sabin and TS_Nerdjosh, illWill and precision pad player Wolfkrone arrived, hungry not only for victory – but for the highly coveted Evolution 2011 Seeding points, awarded only to the strongest players at select events in North America. The players were set. The battleground: Super Street Fighter IV, Marvel vs Capcom 3 and Mortal Kombat. Would Canada be able to defend the realm from the American threat?
The 2 day event brought together not only players of the 3 major titles, but from other scenes as well. Side tournaments included BlazBlue Continuum Shift, Guilty Gear Accent Core, Super Street Fighter 2 HD Remix, Arcana Heart 3, and Tekken 6. No matter what fighters you were skilled at, tournament level competition was waiting for you. On deck to record and stream the event was the E-Sports Championship crew, working together with MTLSF.
As the 83-man bracket of Super Street Fighter IV unfolded, some battles proved that some legends never die, as 15-year Street Fighter veteran and the only Canadian member of Empire Arcadia, EMP_Prez, fought his way into the top 8, going toe-to-toe with the new generation of champions. Empire allegiances can only go so far however as fellow members EMP_Jago and EMP_Dieminion also sliced their way through to the top 8. Rematches of days past were relived, as Chi-Rithy managed to defeat TS_Sabin and secure his place in the top 4. The room erupted when Snafoo defeated EMP_Dieminion in an amazing test of patience and zoning ability from both players in the Dhalsim vs. Guile matchup. However the beast of the night was none other than Detroit’s own Wolfkrone, cutting through all competition up to the top, taking home 64 Evolution 2011 Seed Points to join his collection. Meanwhile, not far off, New York’s TS_Sabin secures victory as well by defeating Montreal’s Kr3wman for 1st place in Mortal Kombat.
On the hyper side, Marvel vs Capcom 3 delivered some appropriately over-the-top moments such as Ontario player familyman taking a number of notable victories, including one over TS_NerdJosh, and making sure everyone within a 3 block radius knew about it. The battle for the fate of two worlds was an epic one, but ultimately it came down to Canadian player Akumamatata vs. EMP_Jago in a struggle that won’t soon be forgotten. The match early on came down to Akumamatata’s team decimated to only Phoenix, but stocked with 5 super bars, meaning that K.Oing her would result in a resurrection to Dark Phoenix, the most powerful character in the game. EMP_Jago, knowing this and still intact with a full team, had to take the gamble of not damaging his opponent at all, and instead run out the game clock, hoping that a time over victory via remaining life would seal the deal. But that meant playing defensively for 40 seconds, and Akumamatata wasn’t going to sit idle while that happened. Coming back from near loss, Akumamatata managed to outmanoeuvre and assault EMP_Jago’s team all the way down to one character, then activate healing and K.O. him before the time was up. The room again exploded in excitement as Montreal was able to defend the home turf in MvC3, as this was the first time East Coast Canada was going up against foreign players in MvC3.
After all was said and done, hearty congratulations are given out to the players in each game, earning their rightful positioning when Evolution 2011 begins! The players are off for a night on the town to enjoy Montreal’s famous dish, Poutine!
Final top 8 positioning:
Marvel vs Capcom 2
64 Points | Song Taing (Akumamatata)
32 Points | Andre James Lambert (EMP_Jago)
16 Points | Edwin Lui (Mr Trite)
8 Points | Nick Camilleri (Nick C)
4 Points | Quan Dao (QuanDizzle)
4 Points | Brian Tobar (Smokey)
2 Points | Yang Sun (Familyman)
2 Points | Jack Liang (White r)
Super Street Fighter 4
64 Points | Joshua Philpot (Wolfkrone)
32 Points | Kevin Landon (EMP_Dieminion)
16 Points | Richard Tuok (Snafoo)
8 Points | Henri Oung (chi-rithy)
4 Points | Arturo Sanchez (TS_Sabin)
4 Points | Shaheen Maghami (Shine)
2 Points | Reynaldo Guibao Jr. (RPGv2)
2 Points | Raegan Phillip (EMP_Prez)