clock menu more-arrow no yes mobile

Filed under:

Super Smash Bros. Melee won’t be at Evo 2019, but Ultimate will

This year’s Evo lineup will include Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, MK11, and Samurai Shodown

Ken from Street Fighter uppercuts King K. Rool in a screenshot from Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Nintendo
Michael McWhertor is a journalist with more than 17 years of experience covering video games, technology, movies, TV, and entertainment.

Organizers for the annual Evo fighting game tournament announced the lineup for this year’s event on Tuesday night. Evo 2019 will feature cornerstones of the fighting game scene like Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition and Tekken 7 as well as still-unreleased games like Mortal Kombat 11 and the new Samurai Shodown.

But one game that won’t be officially featured at Evo 2019 is Super Smash Bros. Melee, the GameCube brawler that’s been part of the tournament’s main stage lineup for the past six years. Instead, the Smash Bros. series will be represented by Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the Switch game released in December.

Super Smash Bros. Melee, despite being nearly 18 years old and a one-time contentious inclusion at Evo, was a regular draw for serious fighting game fans. At Evo 2018, more than 1,300 players registered to compete in Melee — nearly the same number of players who registered to compete in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, a game released in 2014.

Melee’s exclusion from Evo 2019 is clearly a momentous occasion for the game’s community. Evo organizers paid tribute to the Melee scene in a video that played during tonight’s livestream presentation, where the 2019 game lineup was revealed.

Here’s the official Evo 2019 lineup, which will consists of nine games:

  • BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ
  • Mortal Kombat 11
  • Samurai Shodown
  • Soulcalibur 6
  • Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
  • Tekken 7
  • Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late[st]

One notable exclusion from that list of games is Dead or Alive 6, which will be released later this week. Team Ninja’s fighting game had an inauspicious showing at Evo Japan 2019 earlier this month, but Dead or Alive has also not been officially featured as part of the tournament for more than a decade.

Evo co-founder Joey “Mr. Wizard” Cuellar also announced that the four games — down from the typical five — that will be played on the final day of Evo 2019, a Sunday, will be BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle, Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, and Tekken 7.

Evo 2019 will take place Aug. 2-4 in Las Vegas, Nevada at the Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino. Registration for Evo 2019 and ticket sales for Sunday’s finals are now live on the tournament’s official website.

Sign up for the newsletter Sign up for Patch Notes

A weekly roundup of the best things from Polygon