This past weekend I was fortunate enough to attend the final North American tournament in the Capcom Pro Tour series: Canada Cup 2015.
Run by my good friend, tournament organiser Vince RXS Hui, and Canada Cup owner Lap Chi Duong, Canada Cup 2015 was without doubt the biggest fighting game tournament Canada has ever hosted. Not surprisingly, among the attendees were such notable Street Fighter players as Mad Catz’s Tokido and Mago; Razer’s Fuudo, Itabashi Zangief, and Xian; and Evil Geniuses’ Momochi, Ricki Ortiz, Justin Wong, and PR Balrog.
The entire Canadian fighting game community had been eagerly anticipating the event for the past year. Put simply, this event was everything we here in the Canadian FGC had hoped for.
For starters, the venue was perfect. Canada Cup took place at the Sheraton Airport Hotel and Conference Centre, a few miles from Toronto’s Pearson International Airport, making it ideal for the many international players in attendance. The conference room where the event took place wasn’t luxurious, but it definitely was one of the higher-end venues to have catered FGC events this year. The type of guy to pull out all the stops, Lap Chi Duong had taken the liberty of replacing the conference room’s internet with new equipment, guarantying an exceptional stream quality for those watching at home. Hosted by the superb commentary of James Chen, David Graham, Mike Ross, and Zhi, “stream monsters” had everything they could possibly have wished for.
With an ideal location, many of the world’s best players, and the finest organisers and commentators the FGC has to offer, everything was set to make Canada Cup a spectacular event. The only thing left was the competition itself.
Sublime. That’s the only word that can describe the Ultra Street Fighter 4 tournament. The top 8 finals featured some of the hypest moments of the year—my personal favourite moment being Fuudo’s (Fei Long) counter-hit standing strong into ultra against Itabashi Zangief, sending the crowd into complete hysteria
Ultimate Marvel VS Capcom 3 finals were also sensational. Canada Cup Gaming’s own BeeBall put in a stellar performance to oust RayRay and Filipino Champ to bring the trophy home to Canada, leaving everyone in the crowd chanting a proud “Can-a-da, Can-a-da”.
Intermixed among all this hype-stravaganza were casuals and the now infamous “Salty Suite”, streamed by Arturo Sanchez. Money matches went down plentifully—several members of my local scene (the Greater Toronto Area Street Fighters) haemorrhaging cash but having a blast doing it.
Of course the event wouldn’t have been possible without the help of many volunteers. Myself and some good friends (most notably Josephine, Thomas, Izaiah, Bill, Andy… sorry if I’m missing anyone!) helped out by running brackets, running security, and helping anyone with any concerns they had The sense of community among the staff and volunteers was one key reason for Canada Cup’s friendly and inviting atmosphere, and I’m confident that anyone attending their first major fighting game tournament had a fantastic time.
The Canadian Fighting Game Community has come on strong over the past decade, and it’s been a real pleasure to watch the T-series involve into Canada Cup. With Street Fighter V on the horizon it’s a truly exciting time to be a part of the fighting game community, and with organisers like Lap Chi Duong and Vince RXS Hui holding down the forte, it’s a sure-bet that we’re only going to get stronger from here.
Me with Canada Cup 2015 winner Mad Catz Tokido
Originally posted on PMHarrison.com