Rod “Slasher” Breslau recently had a chance to talk to our very own Tom Cannon to pick his brain about the ridiculous amount of announcements that have been made in preparation for this year’s EVO tournament. While much of the information provided can be found here on Shoryuken’s front page, Cannon offers a bit more insight into the total number of competitors that will be making the trip to Las Vegas, marking the biggest jump in attendance in the tournament’s history.
“We will have over 3,500 competitors (actual human beings), which is a record for us,” Cannon said. “I estimate another 4,000-6,000 spectators, but it’s impossible to say accurately as it’s free to attend except Sunday.”
He also touches on the decision to implement a pay-per-view HD broadcast and chat for the tournament’s multiple streams, the entire revenue of which will go towards the $10,000 scholarship they’re offering to those looking to work in the games industry.
“Scholarships is something we’ve wanted to do for a long time. We just had to figure out the right way to pull it off,” said Cannon, who wants to do this every year. “We wanted to make a big statement that gaming communities can be positive experiences for young people, not a waste of time or negative as often portrayed in the media. It is a much stronger statement to say that 100 percent of the PPV goes to college scholarships, instead of saying, ‘Some goes, but some goes in our pockets.'”
As Cannon said, “EVO is fundamentally about competition and community. Players come from around the world to test their mettle against the best, but also to reconnect with old friends, make new friends, and share their passion for these games with their fellow gamers. I think this is a message that really resonates with gamers. Every year EVO gets bigger. This year, with our record prize pool and new scholarship, I’m glad that we’ve upped the ante in both the competitive and community aspects.”
Combine these figures and announcements with the overwhelming amount of support from both the community and game developers, and EVO 2012 is set to be one of the biggest fighting game events we’ve seen as well as the most attended competitive gaming event of all time. Be sure to head on over to Gamespot to read the entire article.