Events/Tournaments Gaming

Free Melee: Nintendo Versus The Big House

The Super Smash Bros. series is one of the most recognized and beloved video game series of all time. A legendary classic, these games are a staple in video game history.

So naturally, when it was announced that The Big House (one of the biggest annual Smash events) would be hosting an online event, fans were excited. However, it all came crashing down this past Friday when Nintendo sent a cease and desist to The Big House, immediately shutting down plans for the event.

Getty Images

Now one may consider this move a shock (especially since 2020 has been one the best years for the esports/gaming industry); however, to those familiar with Nintendo’s history, this is no surprise. In 2010, Nintendo blocked MLG (a professional esports organization) the rights to stream Super Smash Bros. Brawl. The ‘restriction’ meant that MLG had to stop the circuit of the game.

Five years later, on December 1st, 2015, Nintendo also shutdown Project M (a mod of Super Smash Bros. Brawl for the Wii). Historically, gaming companies and brands have been known to dislike mods because if a mod were to ruin the game in any way, the company would be liable.

Now you might be thinking that this isn’t a big deal, but to the gaming industry, it’s caused such an uproar that shutdown is trending on Twitter, and you better believe that the icons of the gaming scene had something to say.

Now is it a case of Nintendo not supporting its own community, or is it possibly the lawyers? In a statement to Polygon, Nintendo stated that while they “appreciate the love and support from their community, if something crosses over into the line of a copyright violation, they simply cannot support it.”

Over the years, Nintendo has become known for having a robust copyright enforcement policy, which has cost them the benefit of having a stronger relationship not only with their community but the esports/gaming scene in general.  Hopefully, in the future, we see something that eventually resolves that issue. 

Events/Tournaments Gaming

The EVO 2020 Lineup Is Equal Parts Expected and Surprising

If you’re one of those individuals who regularly mash buttons on their fight stick and watch extensive combo tutorials, chances are you sat through the recent Evolution Championship Series (EVO) 2020 main games lineup reveal. And after it was done, the FGC went wild in comments sections across gaming websites everywhere.

So hardcore fighting game players found out they’ll need to go in the lab to prepare for the following games:

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Tekken 7

Street Fighter V: Champion Edition

Dragon Ball FighterZ

Samurai Shodown

Granblue Fantasy: Versus

Soulcalibur VI

Under Night In-Birth Exe: Late[cl-r]

Marvel vs. Capcom 2: New Age of Heroes

The nine fighters listed above will take center stage at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas from July 31-Aug. 2 and bring in another record number of Twitch viewers from around the world. The usual suspects that we’re used to seeing during past EVO’s are back for another round. And for many of them, they’re returning to the big stage in a refined and more exciting state for players and viewers alike.

By the time EVO rolls around, new character additions and balance patches will have significantly impacted many of the event’s chosen games. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is in the midst of delivering another lineup of characters in the form of a second Fighters Pass, which could lead to a fresh batch of faces being utilized onscreen. Tekken 7 will bring its new Muay Thai warrior Fahkumram to the scene in the spring and introduce balance adjustments that will make Leroy Smith less of an unstoppable roadblock. In the case of Soulcalibur VI, the 3D weapons fighter will increase its roster with returning combatants, and even a new guest character fans actually want. As for Street Fighter V: Champion Edition, Capcom’s signature fighter will add Seth to the fray and seemingly bring this series iteration to a fitting close.

Speaking of Capcom fighting games, the return of Marvel vs. Capcom 2 is pretty shocking but awesome nonetheless. MvC2 once stood tall as one of EVO’s strongest games and has managed to retain its relevancy in recent years due to its passionate scene. The Battle of the Strongest tournament has kept MvC2’s hype intact thanks to the combined efforts of top players/commentators, such as Michael “Yipes” Mendoza and Chris Matrix. MvC2 is returning to EVO in a major way with an 8-player tournament that features past MvC2 champs, such as IFC|Yipes, Justin Wong, Duc Do and Sanford Kelly. This 20th anniversary tourney for the game is a fine way to honor EVO’s past and perhaps signal a tease of a major reveal for the next Capcom Vs. installment (fingers crossed!).

Over on the anime fighter’s side of the coin, Arc System Works reigns supreme. Three of the publisher/developer’s games have been placed in a premier position–Dragon Ball FighterZ, Under Night In-Birth Exe: Late[cl-r] and Granblue Fantasy: Versus. The first two fighters are actually on the verge of increasing their roster and introducing updates that will present them in a much-improved state. In a move that points to EVO’s stronger emphasis on marketing new fighters on behalf of their business partners, the still unreleased Granblue Fantasy: Versus has been given the top spot over some tournament mainstays. And judging by the success of last year’s event debut of the Samurai Shodown reboot, EVO and SNK’s relationship must have grown stronger since the game is returning for another main stage appearance this year.

The major hoopla surrounding this year’s EVO isn’t just relegated to the games that were selected. It’s also been centered on the games that weren’t picked for the main tournament spot. BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle’s disappearing act doesn’t really come as a shock to many–Granblue Fantasy: Versus obviously took its place since it’s a fresher addition to the FGC and a bigger focus for Arc System Works. The most shocking omission of them all, however, is Mortal Kombat 11. For the first time in a while, a NetherRealm Studios fighting game won’t be a part of EVO’s main games lineup. Two trains of thought immediately come to mind when trying to rationalize this decision–the game’s hype levels might not be high enough to warrant another top spot, or it may just be a move by EVO to respect its sponsors by refraining from featuring the gory fighter in a prominent position. While the games excluded from the mainstay lineup will most likely be featured in side tourneys at EVO, it’s still a bit surprising to see MK11 get relegated to a sideshow act.

EVO 2020 looks to be one of the tournament’s most important installments to date. And by the looks of things, it may be the final year for many of its selections. EVO 2021 might look entirely different if a wealth of FGC rumors end up coming true – the sixth mainline Street Fighter might not be that far off, plus Tekken X Street Fighter may still be deep in development. We all know for a fact that Guilty Gear–Strive- is releasing sometime after EVO 2020, which means its main game spot at EVO 2021 should be a given.

The FGC will come out in droves for this year’s EVO and put their mastery of the hype genre on full display once again. Your favorite fighting game may not have been given its just due this year, but that shouldn’t be a huge cause for concern. No, Mortal Kombat 11 isn’t dead or on life support. And it’s no less important than its fellow genre stalwarts. Fighting games everywhere are still kicking (pun intended) and are bringing in plenty of attention at EVO and FGC tournaments worldwide.

Events/Tournaments Gaming

Everything You Need to Know About ‘Overwatch’ League 2020

In the last three years, the Overwatch League (often shortened to OWL) has become a prominent part of the esports scene. According to Variety, the 2019 OWL Grand Finals had 1.12 million viewers worldwide, and the industry is showing no signs of slowing down anytime soon.

This season holds exciting roster changes, transitioning to a best-of-three map series, making history as the first major esports league to adopt a city-based home-and-away model and the opportunity to compete for $5 million in prizes. 2020 is looking more exciting than ever before—and this year is a great time for new fans to jump into the action.

Hunter Martin/Getty Images
1. How to Play ‘Overwatch’

Overwatch is a team-based, first-person shooter game developed and published by Blizzard Entertainment. 

Each Overwatch game consists of two teams of six players fighting for control over regions of the map. Each player chooses between 31 different heroes who each hold a unique weapon and ability. The three types of heroes are damage hero, tank hero and support hero.

According to the Overwatch website, “Tank heroes soak damage and shatter fortified positions, like closely-grouped enemies and narrow chokepoints. If you’re a tank, you lead the charge. Damage heroes seek out, engage and obliterate the enemy with wide-ranging tools, abilities and play styles. Fearsome but fragile, these heroes require backup to survive. Support heroes empower their allies by healing, shielding, boosting damage and disabling foes. As a support, you’re the backbone of your team’s survival.”

During the game’s duration, heroes charge up their ultimate ability. The better you play as your hero, the faster your eventual ability charges. These abilities can significantly change the outcome.

Overwatch can be played on Playstation 4, Nintendo Switch, Xbox One and PC. The OWL plays on PC.

To understand Overwatch basics, be sure to check out the video below. [Please note: This video was published in 2016, and there have been new heroes and mechanics added since. However, this video does a great job breaking down the wonderful world of Overwatch.]

2. ‘Overwatch’ League Details for 2020

It’s finally that time again! The OWL 2020 season is kicking off on Feb. 8, 2020, hosted by the New York Excelsior in New York City and by Dallas Fuel in Dallas, TX. The 28-match season will end on Aug. 20, 2020. 

In 2019, the San Francisco Shock dominated their way to victory after defeating the Vancouver Titans 4-0 at the Grand Finals in Philadelphia.

Hunter Martin/Getty Images

This year, the league is introducing a few fundamental changes.

The OWL is adapting a homestand system, where each team will host at least two or more homestand events in their city throughout the season. This is the first time a significant esports league will feature a city-based, home-and-away model.

In addition to these matches, there is a new mid-season tournament that will coincide with the All-Stars Game after Week 12 of the season.

According to the league’s website, “The mid-season tournament will feature the top four teams in the league: the top team from each conference and the next best two teams by record from either conference. To manage logistical requirements for teams around the world, the teams will qualify based on their record over their first nine matches in the 2020 season. Those teams will play in a single-elimination bracket, with the top seed picking their opening-round opponent.”

Also, the league’s website states, “All-Stars will feature the league’s best players competing in a series of fun game modes. We’re also planning some 1v1 action and another Talent Takedown. Stay tuned for more details. These All-Stars events will have a total prize pool of US $250K, so there’s more than just bragging rights on the line in 2020.” Check out the full schedule here.

3. ‘Overwatch’ League Game Modes

The OWL is played in a best-of-three map series—a new change to the previous best-of-four map series. There are four types of game modes: Control, Escort, Assault and Hybrid. In OWL, the first map is a Control map followed by a rotation of Assault, Escort and Hybrid maps. 

Control is a best-of-three mode where both teams battle for a single objective point. They do this by standing next to the control point. The longer they control that point, the more their team’s percentage will increase. Only one side can capture the objective point at a time, and the first team to 100 percent wins the round. 

Escort is a payload-style map, where both teams take turns escorting a payload to multiple capture points while the defending team fights to prevent it. The speed of the payload will increase as there are more attacking team players are around it. Whichever team pushes the payload farthest wins the map. In case of a tie, both sides will retry with the remaining time from round one.

Assault is where both teams take turns attacking and defending two objective points in a particular order on the map. Objective points are earned by standing next to them by the attacking team, while the defending team fights them off before time runs out. After the attacking team captures the first point, the timer and spawning locations will adjust. Whichever team captures the most points during their turn, wins the map. Similar to Escort, both sides attempt again with the time they have left from the first round in the event of a tie.

Hybrid is a mix of Escort and Assault modes. In this mode, both teams take turns capturing an objective point, unlocking the payload and then pushing the payload to the final capture point. Whichever team captures the most objective points and pushes the payload farthest wins that map. In case of a tie, both teams attempt this again with the time they have left from the first round.

4. Every ‘Overwatch’ League Team

Previously, the OWL was divided into two divisions: The Atlantic and Pacific. Due to the new homestand model (and the traveling that comes along with it), the divisions are now called “conferences,” and each conference is split into two divisions. That means that each weekend, matches will take place in two different locations. 

The Atlantic North is comprised of the Boston Uprising, London Spitfire, New York Excelsior, Paris Eternal and Toronto Defiant. 

The Atlantic South consists of the Atlanta Reign, Houston Outlaws, Florida Mayhem, Philadelphia Fusion and Washington Justice. 

The Pacific East includes the Chengdu Hunters, Guangzhou Charge, Hangzhou Spark, Seoul Dynasty and Shanghai Dragons. 

The Pacific West contains the Dallas Fuel, LA Gladiators, LA Valiant, San Francisco Shock and Vancouver Titans. 

After last year’s San Francisco Shock versus Vancouver Titans OWL Grand Finals, there’s a lot of eyes on the Pacific West right now. Throughout the season, you can keep track of each team’s standings here.
‘Overwatch’ League

5. ‘Overwatch’ League Top Prizes

The total prize pool is $5 million, according to the league’s website

The midseason tournament includes first place ($500,000), second place ($250,000), third place ($150,000) and fourth place ($150,000). 

The All Stars Game has a prize pool of $250,000. 

The Season Playoffs breaks down to first place ($1.5 million), second place ($800,000), third place ($500,000), fourth place ($300,000), fifth place ($200,000), sixth place ($200,000), seventh place ($100,000) and eighth place ($100,000).

6.. How to Watch the ‘Overwatch’ League

You can keep up with the Overwatch League on YouTube, the league’s website and the OWL apps for Google and Apple products.

Leaders Style

Diddy in a Silky Two-Piece and Other Fire Celeb Fits This Week

Big style means big moves and the world is one giant celeb display of it. Welcome to our weekly review of famous faces who are crushing the sartorial game. Come find all the fire fits here every week. You’re welcome.

There were parties! There were red carpets! There were stage performances! Your fave stars made all the rounds in some pretty sick threads this week, and the ten highlighted below stood out from the pack.

Ryan Tedder
Taylor Hill/Getty Images
Del Mar, California, September 14

Stage rocker chic, but make it streetwear.

Milo Ventimiglia
Frazer Harrison/Getty Images
Los Angeles, September 19

An effortless combo that feels both easy and tight. Take note that green jeans can have that effect.

DJ Khaled
Moses Robinson/Getty Images for Revolt
Atlanta, September 14

In yet another installment of strong men wear pink, we have DJ Khaled rocking some fly trainers in the shade du jour.

Tony Hawk
Gregg DeGuire/Getty Images for Hilarity for Charity
Los Angeled, September 14

Never without his sk8er flair, Tony Hawk cleans up nicely in well-cut basics.

Michael Che
Bobby Bank/Getty Images
New York City, September 19

Comedy is best delivered in fly neutrals that won’t compete with the jokes, but that make a statement all on their own.

Tom Brady
Scott Eisen/Getty Images
Boston, September 17

Sharp situation confirming GOAT status, copy that.

Jeff Goldblum
JC Olivera/WireImage
With Emilie Livingston, Los Angeles, September 14

Bet you never thought that black on black on black on black could ever look this exciting. Well, we’re all being schooled once again by the ‘Blum.

Prince Williams/WireImage
Atlanta, September 14

Silky two-piece set in a bougie print with a matching gold liquor bottle? RICH.

Brad Pitt
Los Angeles, September 18

When your crazy good style is equal parts cool pieces and charisma, natch.

Jaden Smith
David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images
London, England, September 17
Sports Strength

Our Guide to the Hottest Streetball Events of Summer 2019

As another epic NBA season winds down, it’s time to look ahead to some summertime action. Basketball is a year-round sport, and it’s time for ballers to get ready to do battle in some of the most legendary streetball leagues across the country. The summer is where legacies are born.

Looking to scratch that basketball itch while the NBA takes some well deserved time off? ONE37pm has you covered. We are ready to put on our headbands and lace up our Nike Adapts and give you all the info you need about where to check out streetball this summer.

Entertainers 155 Rucker Park Summer Classic

When: All summer long

Where: Harlem, NYC (W. 155th and 8th Ave)

Past Participants: Lew Alcindor (Kareem Abdul Jabbar), Wilt Chamberlain, Julius “Dr. J” Erving, Connie Hawkins, Earl “The Pearl” Monroe, Chris Mullin, Jamal Mashburn, Lance Stephenson, Stephon Marbury, Kobe Bryant, Kyrie Irving, Kemba Walker, Kevin Durant, Pee Wee Kirkland

Reasons to Check It Out: You never know what will happen when you make a visit to this legendary court. The summer is the perfect opportunity to check out why Rucker Park is still regarded as one of the must-visit hoops sanctuaries. Live music, random fan interactions and dance contests are why EBC is a party atmosphere. Just ask KD as he was greeted by a plethora of fans when he suited up at Rucker in 2011 and dropped 66 points during a playoff game, a performance now considered as one of the greatest ever at the court.

Kenny Graham’s West 4th Street (The Cage) Pro-Am Classic

When: May 28-mid August

Where: Greenwich Village, NYC

Past Participants: Julius ‘Dr. J” Erving, Walter Berry, Anthony Mason, Smush Parker

Reasons to Check It Out: The Greenwich Village court best known as “The Cage” brings the toughness out of any hooper who is willing to make a name for themselves. If you’re planning to play there or just willing to stop by and watch some basketball on a casual Saturday, be prepared to witness battles taking place as many ballers are willing to leave it all on the court.

Dyckman Basketball League

When: June and July

Where: Inwood, NYC

Past Participants: Kyle Anderson, Montrezel Harrell, Lance Stephenson, Trey Burke, Jesse Jones (FILAYY), Terry Rozier, Sundiata Gaines, Mike Beasley, Kevin Durant, Kyrie Irving, Baron Davis, Kemba Walker, Brandon Jennings, JR Smith, Ron Artest, Iman Shumpert, DeMar DeRozan

Reasons to Check It Out: With Mr. Cha Ching on the mic, this explosive, gritty streetball league has blossomed to become the premier tournament to hoop in for the past five summers in New York City. Local NYC rap station Hot 97 spins on the ones and twos and with their help, Dyckman Basketball League has developed a rich tradition of being the place where NBA talents test their game against streetball legends who never got a fair chance of making it into the league. Seen in video games like NBA Live and also in SLAM Magazine, Dyckman currently holds the top spot for the hottest streetball league to visit whenever you’re in NYC.

The Drew League

When: July through August

Where: Los Angeles, CA

Past Participants: Paul Pierce, Demar Derozen, Nick Young, James Harden, Kevin Durant, LeBron James, Kobe Bryant, The Game, Baron Davis, JaVale McGee, Pau George, J.R. Smith, John Wall, Metta World Peace

Reasons to Check It Out: If EBC is considered the Notorious B.I.G. of streetball, then the Drew League is the Tupac. It brings that raw, California swagger to the game. Reigning MVP Frank “Nitty” Sessions is the name you must remember as the streetball legend is a player no one wants to face off against, and that includes current NBA players.

The George Goodman League

When: May 30th-August

Where: South East Washington, DC

Past Participants: Kevin Durant, Mike Beasley, Brandon Jennings, Ty Lawson, Chris Brown, Bradley Beal, DeMarcus Cousins, Tyreke Evans

Reasons to Check It Out: The Goodman League is the birthplace of some of the game’s best scorers like Kevin Durant, Mike Beasley and Ty Lawson. Played under the hot summer sun in the South East section of DC, this league puts the DMV hoops (Delaware, Maryland & Virginia) on the map. Toughness, grit and hard-nosed can describe the runs there as the league brings a competitive vibe. Streetball legend “Crimestopper” Aquille Carr is prone to live out his nickname that he garnered in high school and put on a show against any challenger, professional or otherwise.

The Crawsover Pro-Am League

When: July 7- August 26

Where: Seattle Pacific University

Past Participants: Jamal Crawford, Nate Robinson, Blake Griffin, John Wall, Kyrie Irving, Paul George, Chris Paul, Michael Porter Jr, Zach LaVine

Reasons to Check It Out: No league flies under the radar like Seattle’s The Crawsover. Founder—and current NBA player—Jamal Crawford continues to dazzle his hometown crowd. While breaking ankles and handing out eye-popping assists, Crawford is attracting ballers from all over to come through and show love to the fans and competition. Paul Georgie and Zach LaVine have also shown up and put on well-received spectacles.

Miami Pro-AM Basketball League

When: July 7-August

Where: Miami Senior HS

Past Participants: Victor Oladipo, Tyreke Evans, Mario Chalmers, Tim Hardaway Jr, Hassan Whiteside, James Johnson, Brandon Knight, Russ Smith

Reasons to Check It Out: If you’re looking for a league that’s non-stop action and full of highlight-reel dunks, then the Miami Pro League is basically a Sportscenter “Top 10” video. The league has the city buzzing thanks to the energy and superstars that have participated in the tournament. Brandon Knight, Tim Hardaway Jr, Hassan Whiteside, James Johnson and A’mare Stoudemire are just a few names that have shown up to play in front of packed crowds.

Sports Strength

Introducing the 2019 NBA Draft Lottery’s Lucky Charms

The year was 1985. David Stern was approaching his second year as the league’s newest commissioner. The NBA decided to try a new process of determining who would land the No. 1 overall pick of the NBA draft. In an attempt to end the trend of teams purposely tanking to be awarded the first overall pick based off of their regular season record, the NBA decided to use the random lottery ball drawing. The inaugural winner of the drawing was the New York Knicks, who as a result drafted one of the league’s greatest centers of all time, Patrick Ewing from Georgetown University.

Fast-forward to 2019 and it looks like the Knicks are attempting to use any sort of good-luck charm to land the No. 1 overall pick of this year’s NBA draft. They even reached out to Ewing—now the head coach at Georgetown—to represent the team during this year’s draft lottery. Ewing agreed to do it, which is fortunate; even though the Knicks finished the regular season with the worst record of the league, they’re still not a shoe-in for getting the first overall pick.

Focus on Sport/Getty Images

In the league’s effort to end the latest trend of tanking, the three worst teams are made the odds-on favorites for becoming the first overall pick of the 2019 NBA draft.

This makes the hoops guru in us curious to know who and what teams should be represented in the announcement of the 2019 NBA draft pick order. As we are just hours away from finding out who will get the chance to choose Zion Williamson with the first overall pick, here’s our NBA draft lottery suggestion box of who should represent what teams to help them get some good luck on their side when Adam Silver announces the draft order.

Phoenix Suns: Steve Nash
Andy Hayt/NBAE via Getty Images

What cooler way to land the No. 1 pick than by using your franchise’s greatest point guard ever as a representation of the era that could be arriving in Phoenix? Steve Nash made Phoenix one of the league’s hottest tickets due to the Mike D’Antoni fast-paced, up-tempo offensive attack he facilitated on the court between Joe Johnson and Amar’e Stoudemire. Today, with Devin Booker and DeAndre Ayton on the team, the new-era Suns are just one versatile player away from reliving those glory days, and Nash being the face of the Suns in the hopes of winning the opportunity to land Zion would be a dream 360 all Suns fans are praying for.

The West should get nervous if the No. 1 lottery ball falls into Phoenix’s hands, as the Suns are in a great position to form Generation Z’s first Big Three.

Cleveland Cavaliers: Odell Beckham Jr.
Gary Miller/Getty Images

With LeBron James starting a new era in L.A., Cleveland is searching for a new superstar to carry their winning ways into the future. Luckily, they were able to land football’s biggest star, who could be the most important figure to ever put on a Cleveland sports jersey since the King. Introducing wide receiver of the Cleveland Browns, Odell Beckham Jr.

As the face of the new-and-improved Browns, OBJ’s superstar charm can carry over to the hardwood floor as Cleveland desperately needs a new emperor of hoops if the city wants to do more than just live up to its nickname as the rock ’n’ roll capital of the world and bring a championship back to the 216. Odell is poised to do that on the gridiron, so it’s only right they should let him try his luck on the draft lottery side of things.

New York Knicks: Walt “Clyde” Frazier
Jesse D. Garrabrant/NBAE via Getty Images

Even though the Knicks found their man in Pat Ewing, we wonder who might have been next in line. Maybe the Knicks need two good-luck charms? Some might consider John Starks or maybe Larry Johnson. Or perhaps Charles Oakley, the perfect example of vintage Knicks basketball at its best. But the man who lives, breathes and can bring some good-luck hoops karma and winning ways back to the mecca of basketball is none other than Walt “Clyde” Frazier.

It makes perfect sense. Frazier is a hoops god to die-hard Knicks fans—after all, he got them their last championship way back in 1973. Known for not being afraid to let his creativeness be seen on and off the court (he is hands down one of the most visible commentators the NBA has ever had, due to this wardrobe and vocabulary), Frazier can bring hope and excitement to the Big Apple like it’s 1967 and he’s just been drafted to the team fresh off winning the NIT title at Southern Illinois.

What better way to bring hope to a city that has been let down for years than by unleashing their greatest point guard ever? With the possibility of landing big-time potential free agents such as Kyrie Irving and Kevin Durant, the Knicks can hit the trifecta if they land the pick that can possibly change basketball for many years to come.

It looks like Gotham City can start getting ready to plan a huge championship party like it’s 1973.