The Start of Things to Come
As has already been advertised on this site: DarkWorld Gaming, Capcom UK, Mad Catz UK and Xtreme Gaming Colchester have joined together to start a fighting tournament every Friday Night for free. Yep for free. And I will write that one more time FOR FREE.
Seeing as DarkWorld Gaming’s crew are heavily involved in this venture I thought I would give an independent review of the event.
Nothing these days is free so I must admit I went to the first fight night at Xtreme Gaming in Colchester with some trepidation. I have been to some conventions which have held fighting tournaments but they have all been dismal. This is normally down to the fact that they are either very clicky, in so much there are the competitors the Organisers know and everyone else is ignored or made to feel like an outsider. Or that they are so poorly organised that you don’t know where you are , who you’re fighting and when you should fight them. I have paid good money to go to these places and while the rest of these conventions were very good, it left a bit worried as to how something for free would fare.
Those fears were quickly gone upon entering Xtreme Gaming. We were welcomed by the friendly staff, our Gamer Tags were taken down so we could be quickly sorted for the tournament. We had a good chat about all things gaming, these guys know their stuff and it obvious it’s their passion. We were then given free reign to practice on any of the XBOX 360’s set up with the game. This season is Ultra Street Fighter 4.
The location is excellent, if you cannot make a Fight Night you must come down and try it out. Each console is equipped with a pro wired joypad or an official Microsoft one. A center table holds the console where the joypad sits with cupholders. Each set also features very comfortable gaming chairs and, while they are not used for this event, quality gaming headsets. There is also one area set up with quality arcade sticks, for when the real fighting starts.
A quick word on the decoration and the feel of the place. The whole place is looked over by a massive fallout 3 statue, and each area has a theme. There’s like a futuristic area where USF4 is played, a Call of Duty Zombies area looking straight out of the game and a downstairs bunker area which looks like a sweet place for a party.
In short you couldn’t hope for a better location.
We sat down to practice and very soon we had met some of the DarkWorld guys. Nice guys, very eager to make this a success just like Xtreme gaming. Before you know it we are fighting with people we have never met before and all having a good laugh swapping tactics and ideas. What I loved was there are all ages and skills there so everyone is having a good time. There are a few pro or emerging pro players there, but they also are more then happy to talk tactics and show the less able some cool neat tricks.
I saw DarkWorld’s Jesus this week go from a relative n00b (no offence Jesus) to someone that can really hold his own and surprise you. My boy Christian received some excellent tutelage from the overwhelmingly skilled Luna, who also took the time to show him some of my tells…. Thanks for that…
Still it’s good to see a community forming so quickly.
Let the Games Begin!
The rules were clearly states and laid out and explained to those who aren’t used to tournament style play. They are following EVO rules:
- A double elimination system so everyone gets at least two fights, so if you get a hard draw you will get a chance to redeem yourself.
- You have the choice of stick or pad or bring your own if that’s your thing.
- Early rounds are 3 matches of 3 rounds. The loser of a round can change character.
- Random stage selection is on.
- Edition selection is disabled.
The thing that surprised me was how different it is to playing people online. Yes, we all love the fact that in seconds nowadays we can be fighting someone from the other side of the world with hardly any lag. But sitting down next to someone you have never met and never played adds a layer of tension and excitement. We shake hands and the fight begins.
Now, I am not going to go in to any of my fights, because this is not a review of my skill (to which I would review as a happy average, with ideas above my station). But more the atmosphere that was created. Everyone shakes hands at the end, no hard feelings and no nastiness. If a good match is going on it will attract watchers and there is clapping for the winner, oohs and ahhs can be heard through the finals and semi finals. But at the end of the day everyone is happy that the fights are well won and good play was had by all.
I find this very refreshing and can only be put down to the organisers and the good crowd that it’s attract. There are prizes but these are done in a fair way, everyone gets points for coming and those in the the top 4 get extra points. These points are converted to raffle tickets at the end of the season for the prizes. So even if you just turn up you get a chance of winning something. Awesome.
I am sitting here now trying to find a negative for a rounded review, and in all honesty I cannot think of one. Maybe if I scraped the bottom of the barrel I could say that it’s made me buy a FightStick and that’s hurt my bank balance somewhat.
I will close by saying that what has started in Colchester is something very very good that deserves everyone in Colchester’s Gaming Community to support it. It’s running every Friday until Christmas, there really is no reason to pass this up. This could only be the beginning and with a start like this we could have something very special.
Big thanks must be said to Capcom UK who as I understand has helped out a lot too, Colchester and Xtreme Gaming are doing your game proud.
The only thing they ask is that you all spread the word. Well I am useless at Facebook and I don’t understand Twitter so please take my review as my full endorsement, although I have tried with twitter.
Oh, in case you wondered the already mentioned Luna won, congrats… Till next time we meet…
Many thanks to Ben Calderwood (Jago2K) for submitting this article on DarkWorld Gaming.