Unlike other major esports competitions, the annual Evo Championship Series is open to anyone who pays the entry fee. There’s no need to qualify or have a sponsor, just pay to enter and try to win. Sunday is the final day of the event where players from around the world compete in fighting games to determine who is the best in the world.
Evo 2018 started on Friday with more than 11,000 players competing across nine games. For Sunday, the five premiere games of the event will hold their finals featuring the top eight players out of a pool of hundreds and even thousands of competitors.
Street Fighter V
Start Time: 10:30 p.m. Eastern
Number of Entrants: 2,484
Benjamin “Problem-X” Simon (United Kingdom) vs. Kanamori “Gachikun” Tsunehiro (Japan)
Keita “Fuudo” Ai (Japan) vs. Hajime “Tokido” Taniguchi (Japan)
Olivier “Luffy” Hay (France) vs. Marcus “The Cool Kid93” Redmond (United States)
Christopher “Caba” Rodriguez (Dominican Republic) vs. Atushi Fujimura (Japan)
Overview: Street Fighter V will be the final event for Evo 2018, and this year, it’s truly an international affair. Half of the final eight are from Japan, but the other four comes from the U.S., France, United Kingdom, and the Dominican Republic. Three of the competitors won previous Evo events in Street Fighter IV – Luffy at Evo 2014 and Fuudo at Evo 2011 – and Tokido is the reigning Street Fighter V champion.
Cool Kid93 is the new face in the bunch as evident by his lack of sponsors. Originally from Chicago, he’s the only American player left and has taken down some of the best players with his Abigail play.
Dragon Ball FighterZ
Start Time: 7 p.m. Eastern
Number of Entrants: 2,575
Dominque “SonicFox” McLean (United States) vs. Fenritti (Japan)
Goichi “GO1” Kishida (Japan) vs. Ryota “Kazunoko” Inoue (Japan)
Naoki “Moke” Nakayama (Japan) vs. Steve “Supernoon” Carbajal (United States)
KnowKami (United States) vs. Tsutomu “Kubo” Kubota (Japan)
Overview: In its first time at Evo 2018, Dragon Ball FighterZ had the most entrants out of all the official tournament games. As the case with a new fighting game, the top players are also some of the best at other games. SonicFox dominated Mortal Kombat for a year, Kazunoko is one of the best players in Street Fighter V and Guilty Gear, and Fenritti came in second place at Evo 2017’s BlazBlue Central Fiction tournament.
Start Time: 4:30 p.m. Eastern
Number of Entrants: 1,538
LowHigh (Korea) vs. Byeong Mun “Qudans” Son (Korea)
Kim “JDCR” Jin (Korea) vs. Terrelle “LilMajin” Jackson (United States)
0_wws (Japan) vs. Rangchu (Japan) vs. Rangchu (Korea)
Nopparut “Book” Hempamorn (Thailand) vs. TLaionsan (Japan)
Overview: This is the second year Tekken 7 is at Evo and fitting enough, last year’s champion, JDCR, makes it to the finals. Korea is known for its quality Tekken players thus half the final players from the country. The US typically has a strong showing, but only LilMajin made it to the finals.
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Start Time: 1:30 p.m. Eastern
Number of Entrants: 1,351
Juan “Hungrybox” Debiedma (United States) vs. William “Leffen” Hjelte (Sweden)
Justin “Plup” McGrath (United States) vs. Joseph “Mang0” Marquez (United States)
Adam “Armade” Lindgren (Sweden) vs. Johnny “S2J” Kim (United States)
Justin “Wizzrobe” Hallett (United States) vs. James “Swedish Delight” Liu (United States)
Overview: It’s almost 17 years old, but Super Smash Bros. Melee continues to have a large pool of competitors and viewers who want to see the best go at it on the Gamecube game. As the case with most Melee finals, the top eight players consist of the known players who have competed against each other for years.
Guilty Gear Xrd REV2
Start Time: 11 a.m. Eastern
Number of Entrants: 629
Omito (Japan) vs. Hisatoshi “Rion” Usui (Japan)
Zadi (Japan) vs. Masahiro “Machabo” Tominaga (Japan)
Harkuni “Fumo” Suga (Japan) vs. Nage (Japan)
Eli “LostSoul” Rabadad (United States) vs. Fukuda “Mikado” Norihiro (Japan)
Overview: Each year, the Evo staff give a spot on the last day to a game made by Japanese developer Arc Systems Works. This usually switches each year between a Blazblue game and a Guilty Gear game. Since BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle release date was in June, the staff opted to include Guilty Gear Xrd REV2 that came out last May. As the case with most of these 2D fighting games from Arc System Works, Japan dominates the field, but there is usually one non-Japanese player in the mix, and this year its LostSoul.