Doubles Grand Finals: Ranai + Komorikiri vs Gomamugitya + Taiheita
Villager + Cloud vs Lucario + Lucas
This set is 55 minutes of the two best doubles teams in the world facing off against each other. Compared to North American Clouds, Komorikiri’s plays a zoned control style that allows Ranai to play his typical aggressive pressure without threat. The problem is that this style allows Taiheita and Goma to play their medic-Anubis strategy without instant kill threat. Ranai and Komo don’t care. They take Goma’s stocks, letting Anubis work. They relentlessly zone off Lucario and keep Taiheita as far away as possible. The threats of a high aura Lucario and Lucas nearly always under 70%, however, do bite back. This is one of the longest Grand Finals sets I’ve seen, but it’s also some of the best doubles play I’ve seen.
Winners Semifinals: Dabuz vs Kamemushi
Rosalina/Olimar vs Megaman
Self Destructs weight a lot. Despite an early SD in game 1, Kamemushi nearly brings it back against Dabuz’s Rosalina until a second SD loses the set for him. Even after winning game 1, Kamemushi left the impression on Dabuz that Rosalina is not the correct pick and switches to Olimar. While the new pick throws Kamemushi off, it’s clear that he’s downloading the match-up. The next few games show it as he learns how to pick through Dabuz’s wall and find his confirms while avoiding Dabuz’s edge guarding. In game 5, we see the best of both players in action.
Midwest Circuit Finale: Endgame
Winner’s Finals: MVG Echofox | Mew2King vs TSM | ZeRo
Cloud vs Diddy Kong
Good things happen when Mew2king is able to focus on one game for a day. In game 1, ZeRo dominates the neutral, easily taking Mew2king’s first stock, and avoiding his gimp attempts. Game 2 is much closer, but only due to an SD by ZeRo when Mew2king would have fallen into the blastzone. Following up are two fast and dominating game trades complete with melee-like edge guards from both players.
Losers Top 8: E2C | Darkshad vs UR | Ned
Ryu vs Cloud
A DLC battle that shows the difference between explosive power styles and calculated, chipping attacks. Unsurprisingly, Ned’s neutral game out speeds Darkshad so heavily it looks impossible for Darkshad to find a footing. But for every neutral win and percent of limit charge, everything Ned wants can and is shot into the blast zone by down airs and true Shoryukens. Often, Ned will take the first stock, only to quickly lose his lead to Darkshad’s punish game. This set is a nail-biter as any mistake, from buffer inputs or miscalculated neutral games, is threatened by losing everything.
Winners Semifinals: TSM | ZeRo vs Zinoto
Diddy Kong vs Diddy Kong
Historically, ZeRo destroys Zinoto specifically in the Diddy mirror. This time, however, Zinoto showed how much he’s practised and dissected this match-up, staying even with ZeRo and even winning game 1. The Diddy Kong ditto is about patience. Often, both players will walk forward, stop, dash back, stop, and finally approach his opponent….only to be punished for approaching. Both players combat each other in so many rock-paper-scissors scenarios, 50-50s, and sometimes just plain hard reads on shield drops in this banana catastrophe. These two are the best of the Diddy Kong players and this set beautifully orchestrates the limits of the character. It is the best set of the weekend