This last weekend (July 9-11) I got on a dreaded airplane and flew to fabulous (Which is just the word they use for “shiny”) Las Vegas for the purpose of attending the world’s best fighting game tournament, Evolution 2010. Going through airport security carrying around a fairly large arcade stick often has people asking, “What in the hell is that?” It actually sometimes gets people worried, because unfortunately arcade sticks happen to give off the vibe of “explosives” to those who have no clue as to what they are.
Reassuring my flight that I was not (despite popular belief) in possession of explosives, I arrived in Las Vegas with my good friend Andres “nothingxs” Velasco enormously sleep deprived. Our flight left early (5:40 AM on Thursday. We had stayed up all of Wednesday) so we were both running on only the previous day’s sleep. This soon ended up being irrelevant once we entered our hotel, Caesar’s Palace.
Now I have been to a previous Evolution tournament, back in 2008. That year, the tournament was being held in the Tropicana Hotel. The short story on that hotel is that it sucked. The long story is that it hella sucked. During our stay in the Tropicana, we quickly found out that there were two types of rooms you could have gotten, we’ll call them POS A and POS B. Now, POS A is the type of room where you get absolutely no air conditioning and it’s as hot as the surface of the sun, but on the bright side you have hot water for your showers. POS B, on the other hand, has fantastic air conditioning, some would say too good. The downside, is that you have absolutely no hot water whatsoever.
Caesar’s Palace, needless to say, was an improvement. Right off the bat we had air conditioning and hot water, so it was already the best hotel I’d ever stayed at in Las Vegas. I won’t go into too much detail, but I will say that our bathroom (which is about two times bigger than the room I have in my house) was godlike.
Unfortunately for me, I didn’t get to spend a lot of time in our amazing room. Having volunteered to be a judge (Also see: slave) at this enormous tournament, which pretty much means I was busy for several days. On Thursday, I helped people check-in to get their badges and such. On Friday, I judged a Tatsunoko vs Capcom pool and helped judge a Super Street Fighter IV pool. On Saturday, I judged a Marvel vs Capcom 2 pool (which has been a horrible experience twice over).
Judging is pretty straightforward, you’re pretty much just getting matches running and writing down the winners and losers. Occasionally, however, you get the privilege of disqualifying people who fail to show up to their match.