Acting as the country’s biggest Super Smash Bros. for Wii U invitational, Tokaigi 2017 was the place for Japan to show off the national talent that may not be able to make it to out of country tournaments. While many lesser known Japanese players got their time in the sun, the USA reigned supreme with NRG|Nairo taking the crown.
For Nairo, it was revenge for his second place finish last year, where Abadango narrowly fought off the world’s best Zero Suit Samus to keep the Tokaigi title in its home country. Nairo even took out LG|Abadango on his way to Grands, defeating him 2-0 in Winners’ Finals and securing himself at least a second place finish. Abadango would eventually get third, losing to top Japanese Sonic KEN and Nairo’s rival during his trip to Japan. The Tokaigi Grand Finals was actually a repeat of last week’s Umebura qualifier, with KEN resetting the bracket 3-0 from Losers’ but failing to seal the deal in the second set. KEN will no doubt be gunning for Nairo in the future and with the Sonic main attending Frostbite later this month, he’ll be grinding out top level Zero Suit Samus experience any chance he gets.
Japan did mount an effective defence for the rest of the bracket, with top Lucario Tsu-, Villager god Ranai and hidden boss Kirihara taking the fourth and fifth placings, with the next highest foreign player being RNG|Dabuz at seventh. Dabuz was actually sent into Losers’ in the very first round, losing to world’s best Olimar Shuton who will be also making the journey to Frostbite. He defeated Japanese Bayonetta Hiro and C9|Ally, before falling to KEN and earning him seventh. SHIG|9B joined him at the seventh spot, with the rest of the foreign detachment of PG|ESAM, eLv|Mr. R and Ally getting ninth. In a rather underwhelming performance, DNG|Kameme didn’t even take a game in the bracket, going 0-2 to both ESAM and Tsu-. Both regions must starting to be catching up to Megaman’s bag of tricks.
With more Japanese players coming to US tournaments with the aforementioned Frostbite, as well as Frame Perfect Series 2 later in the year, the Eastern and Western edges of the Smash world are growing ever closer. As seen with the performance of the Japanese Duck Hunt triumvirate at Genesis 4, both nations are capable in putting major dents in each other so let’s hope for more back and forth action as the year goes on.
Tokaigi 2017 – Results
In a repeat of the Umebura Qualifier, KEN resets the bracket (3-0!), but Nairo ultimately takes it! pic.twitter.com/jpiaWwj6mb
— Tetra (@Tetra_76) February 11, 2017