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The Collusion of Money, Drama, And Pride

With a scene that's bigger than ever, how the fighting game community's biggest organizers are trying to break its players of some bad habits and grow up.

Several important elements of the fighting game community came together last week to announce a sweeping change to many of the most popular tournaments in the scene. Collusion, in this case defined as two or more players agreeing to purposely manipulate a match or intentionally underperform, would no longer be tolerated. Those involved would forfeit prize and title.

EVO has continued to grow, gaining sponsors and thousands of worldwide fans along the way. It is far from its old niche.

“Competitive spirit is the lifeblood of the fighting game community,” announced EVO founder Tom “Inkblot” Cannon on his popular fighting game website Shoryuken. “Unfortunately, this year we have seen a few incidents where players intentionally underperformed, usually in the final matches of a tournament. This behavior is unacceptable, and it must end.”

The Shoryuken element is key to this, as well. If tournaments refuse to adopt the collusion rule, Shoryuken and EventHubs, another popular destination for fighting discussion, have declared they will not cover the tournament in question. The rule change has the backing of many major tournaments already, and common tournament sponsor and accessory maker Mad Catz.

It’s a sweeping change, and one that’s prompted heated discussion from within the community. Cannon was expecting this, but he has good evidence for why everyone should get behind the rule change: EVO has been operating with the very same rule since an incident back in 2004.

EVO 2004 is mostly remembered for Daigo Umehara’s unbelievable full parry of Justin Wong. But it’s also where the finalists in the event’s Soulcalibur II tournament, Rob “RTD” Combs and Marquette “Mick” Yarbrough, were widely believed to have decided their final match wasn't worth playing seriously. Combs and Yarbrough were friends, a common thread during these moments. Coverage of fighting game tournaments wasn't as prevalent in 2004 as it is now, but surprisingly enough, Games Across America (GSN) covered exactly what happened at 50 seconds into the clip below.

"GSN: I hear there was some controversy, they thought maybe you guys were faking it.

Combs: We did pick characters that we were good with, and we played it out.

Yarbrough: We fought, we actually fought. [...] We the most dominant team around, you know? Can’t nobody stop us."

Following this match, EVO instituted the collusion rule now populating to other tournaments. No action was taken against Combs or Yarbrough, however.

“We didn't want to come down on them after the fact because they didn't break any rules, even though they broke the spirit of the tournament,” said Cannon to me recently. “We were like ‘fine, this happened, let's make sure this is never gonna happen again.’ We did that a while ago, and it's worked out great for us.”

Since then, Cannon said EVO has experienced nothing else like what happened at the end of the Soulcalibur 2 tournament. Once players know the rules, he told me, they tend to shape up.

What Cannon and others are hoping to clamp down on can be a little confusing to understand. It’s not about pot splitting, in which several players agree to divvy up the tournament money to one another. Pot splitting is not unique to the fighting game community, and though it impacts the game, it’s difficult to imagine a scenario where it could reasonably be eliminated.

“You really can't stop somebody from splitting a pot,” said David “UltraDavid” Graham, a former player, commentator, and, during the day, a lawyer with his own practice. “I think it makes too much economic sense, unless you really think you are, by far, the best player, and you're going to dominate. Or you don't like the player you're playing against. Otherwise, you might as well just split. Why take the risk that you don't earn money?”

“That's [pot splitting is] not the concern at all,” said Cannon. “It's impossible to stop because once the money is in their hands, they could just split it later, if they didn't split it on-site.”

But it’s impossible to talk about the collusion rule without considering pot splitting, either. The two are often but not always linked, as friends or allies decide to divide the tournament money. If one's money is now more or less guaranteed, there's far less incentive to be performing at the top of your game. Pot splitting happens behind-the-scenes, and there’s no way to prove it.

That is, unless you admit you were an active participant.

A snapshot from an old TechTV segment on the B4 tournament in San Jose, California. You might notice a familiar face.

“I've witnessed it,” said longtime player Jay “Viscant” Snyder. “Heck, I've taken part in it. We all have. That's how the FGC used to work.”

Snyder was a champion at EVO 2011, taking the ultimate prize for Marvel vs. Capcom 3 with his combination of Albert Wesker, Mike Haggar, and Phoenix. Snyder has been a part of the fighting game community for a long time, and remembers a specific story from more than 10 years ago.

There was a tournament in Phoenix, Arizona during the heyday of Marvel vs. Capcom 2, and a number of San Diego, California-based players were invited. When Snyder and his crew arrived, they discovered Peter “ComboFiend” Rosas and his squad, known as R.U.N., were there, too. Previous tournament results, lingering bad feelings, and webcam girls (“no joke!”) simmered.

“We decided that they weren't going to get a dime out of the tournament,” said Snyder.

During the semi-finals, Long “ShadyK” Tran, Tong "Genghis" Ho, and Snyder were still in the winners bracket, while Rosas had drifted into the losers bracket. Feeling confident, Snyder’s crew decided Snyder would purposely throw matches to place himself in the losers bracket. The plan went off without a hitch, and Snyder managed to deny Rosas from winning anything at all.

“The top three placers were Genghis, myself and ShadyK--in that order,” said Snyder. “We split the money on the spot and didn't really hide what we were doing. It should be noted that this was the last time I'd beat ComboFiend [Rosas] in ANYTHING (Marvel 2, Marvel 3, SF4, 3s, ST, A3, coin flipping, RPS, credit card roulette, Candy Land). Karma is not without a sense of humor.”

Snyder said he was not alone, and this was common practice in the earlier days of the fighting game community, and not necessarily frowned upon.

“That's how things were done,” he said. “People from out of town come to your arcade? They're not winning, we'll protect the house somehow or someway. That's just how it was.”

That was more than a decade ago, though. Much has changed, including Snyder.

“Back then these were 40-man tournaments with no streams, no sponsors and a handful of spectators,” he said. “We want the FGC to be more than that now. We want to be attractive to sponsors. We want our streams to be watched and appreciated. We want people to turn on an FGC stream for the first time and get hooked by the great matches they're seeing, not turned off by players throwing games. Maybe things were OK the way they were back then (they weren't) but we all have to grow up a little. If we truly want the FGC to grow and be on the level of other eSports then we have to clean up our collective act and making a hard and firm stance against collusion, and match fixing is a good start.”

"I've witnessed it. Heck, I've taken part in it. We all have. That's how the FGC used to work. [...] Maybe things were OK the way they were back then (they weren't) but we all have to grow up a little."

What can be reasonably proved is whether or not top-tier players are, for whatever reason, purposely playing terribly.

“The entire point of a tournament is to determine the best player, and mathematically, the only thing a double-elimination tournament format guarantees is the top two players,” said former Capcom strategic marketing director of online and community Seth Killian. “Nobody is forcing you to play your best at all times in your life, but if you show up to a tournament that the organizer and lots of other players have put a lot of resources into, and the whole point of a tournament is to show who is best, then playing by those rules seems pretty straightforward.”

Killian, a longtime member of the fighting game community, was both a known spokesperson and a large internal influence on Capcom’s modern fighting games. He left the company in 2012 to take a lead design role at Sony Santa Monica, but continues to remain close to his roots and applauded the decision to expand EVO's anti-collusion measures to a wider audience.

“This has already been a rule at by far the biggest tournament in the world, for many, many years,” he said. “Anyone can invent all kinds of imaginary situations where it goes bad, is terribly enforced, etc, but instead there's the decade of reality: it works just fine. There has been no "new world order," and there has been no shortage of surprising character picks, counter-picks, etc. Every competitive activity from boxing to football has people making judgment calls, and of course those games would be a mess with terrible officiating too. There's less of this in video games because so many rules are built into code, but where it exists in the FGC it has worked just fine, with lots of truly incredible matches.”

“Just because they pot split doesn't mean they don't have to not play the match seriously,” said Graham. “When I played, I split pots. I did it. But I never gave up the match, you know? I never let my opponent give up the match. I don't think I considered it at the time, actually.”

Again, a big reason the collusion rule has come into vogue in 2013 was a series of closely watched finals matches. Coincidentally, they all involve Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3, and each had the quality of the fights called into question. These incidents were pointed out and described to me by members in the community.

Back in late March, Loren “Fanatiq” Riley and Christopher “ChrisG” Gonzalez squared off against one another at the Final Round tournament in Atlanta, Georgia. Riley is seen using an unusual set of characters--often a red flag--and intentionally bailing out of combos several times.

In this case, the intention of the player was obvious, and Riley, part of Team AGE, apologized.

“A lot of people questioned whether or not it was thrown or whatever,” he said in a YouTube video. “I intentionally made it very obvious that it was a throw, and it wasn’t, again, an attempt to spit in the face of any organizers or anything like that. It was my own protest, and, obviously, anyone protesting in any kind of circumstance is going to be open to attack, and I understand why certain people were offended. I thought by me playing the match in the way I did, by actually trying to get the hits before deciding to throw the match, I’d give the people what they wanted as far of them seeing the ways to open up Morrigan, the ways to get the hits on ChrisG’s team, the ways to open up ChrisG in general. Unfortunately, by me doing that, once I got the hits, they wanted to see the actual K.O., and that was something I was unwilling to do there. I’ve learned from that mistake, and what I’ve learned is that any circumstances where I feel that I don’t want to play a match, if I feel things are unfair, if I feel the seeding was inappropriate or things of that nature, the obvious best response to that situation is just to withdraw from the tournament.”

Then, in April, there was the Grand Finals at the Texas Showdown event, pitting the ever present Justin Wong against Gonzalez. If you skip to the end, you’ll notice the two are seen picking random characters and generally goofing around, both traits contrary to their known talents.

You don’t have to go far to see diehard fans criticizing the level of play on display.

The need for a stricter set of rules was highlighted just days before the collusion rule expansion was announced. At the Video X Games competition in the Caribbean in late July, ChrisG and Job "Flocker" Figueroa found themselves squaring off. Many observers, including Mad Catz community and sponsorship manager Mark “MarkMan” Julio, criticized the players, accusing them of playing with goofball teams, including the notoriously disdained Phoenix Wright.

In these cases and others, the players largely never admit to collusion, pot splitting, or intentionally screwing up the tournament, but it’s obvious even to laymen. The question facing the community--players, sponsors, organizers, commentators, viewers--is what to do about it. Cannon’s already admitted there’s no way to regulate pot splitting, so what’s happening?

Those in the community favoring the rule change said it was solely about ensuring everyone is having a good time. Some players have criticized the collusion rule as easily exploitable, and as gamers, they’ll easily find a way to break the system. Cannon welcomed these challenges, and compared players looking to sneak a fast one to sports players caught flopping. Flopping is when a player intentionally exaggerates physical contact with another player in hopes of drawing a foul. It’s hard to pull off and the referees don’t always catch it, but someone who’s exceptionally good at flopping is also exceptionally good at making it seem real.

“The rule is really designed to stop the matches at the end of the tournament from becoming a complete joke,” said Cannon. “I'm also equally sure there have probably been times where, late in the tournament, you had two friends playing each other, and in their heart of hearts, they were not playing their absolutely hardest because they know what's going to happen. But they at least played well enough that it was a legitimate match. That's all we're trying to do.”

More importantly, what Cannon and others hope to clamp down on are shenanigans in the final moments of a tournament, the high-stakes moments that people wait around all day and night for. There was an unspoken commitment to organizers and fans, and now it’s written down and has consequences.

“We’re only going to invoke the rule when there is an obvious flop in the last two minutes of the fourth quarter,” he said.

Cannon acknowledged some legitimate concerns from players. What happens if players want to experiment? What happens if someone is picking a strange lineup to keep cards close to the chest, and not blow a secret technique? What if people just want to have a little bit of fun?

Snyder had a perfect example. At the Oceanside Fight Club tournament in San Diego this past weekend, he was pitted against Connor “PermaVermin” O'Neill, a notoriously difficult player who often employs strange teams. Snyder added Dormammu from Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 to his lineup, a tournament first and an unexpected move. Remember, this would usually constitute a red flag for possible collusion. The commentators were confused during the match, publicly wondering why Snyder went with Dormammu.

“Because I was winning they thought that perhaps I was showing off,” he said. “The ‘c-word’ even got floated out there during the set.”

Since he won all three rounds, though, nothing came of it.

What happened? Snyder showed up early to the tournament, and was playing casually with O'Neill. None of Snyder’s usual tactics were getting him anywhere, so he randomly picked Dormammu. Bingo. O'Neill was thrown off his game, and Snyder kept this in mind for later.

“It's only because I won the set that this pick doesn't look fishy,” said Snyder. “ [...] What if instead of winning 3-0, I lost 3-0? People would be able to point to those mistakes to say that I didn't know what I was doing with that character and that I threw the set. The intent and reason for picking that character and that team would have been the same either way; good results made me look smart whereas bad results would have made me look like a match fixer.”

Even with this in mind, Snyder thinks the rule is right, just one that should be exercised with caution. Good intentions often have unexpected consequences, and you can’t control everything. It is, in the end, subjective.

One possible wrinkle comes from international tournaments, which Cannon and others have less control over. Everyone I spoke to assumed the the world would follow their lead, not wanting to be left behind. One place it won’t have any impact, though, is competitive play in Japan, as there no money prizes for legal reasons.

“The only thing to play for is, in Japan, is for pride,” said Cannon.

If Cannon and others gets their way, that’ll be a big reason the rest of the world plays, too.

Patrick Klepek on Google+
163 Comments
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Posted by MrMazz

good stuff

Posted by Fredchuckdave

@mnzy: It's spelled "RONG"

Edited by CountRockula

This is a great piece of work. Nice job, Patrick.

Posted by Skooky

This article is like a hundred billion times better because you talked to Viscant.

Posted by TimeFugitive

Great read, I love reading about the fighting scene...even though I am no part affiliated with it.

Edited by FLStyle

@starvinggamer said:

As a member of the FGC, I found very little in this article to be condescending or offensive. Good job!

Phew! While I will always write about what I want to write about and how I want to write about it, I did take the accusations of sensationalization from my Aris story last year seriously. (For the record, I don't regret reporting that story at all.) My big takeaway was being deliberate and careful when covering communities that I'm unfamiliar with and not a part of, and tried really hard to make that apparent in this story.

As you shouldn't regret the Aris story, it was absolutely something that needed to be reported. Had you the foresight of those takeaways before you wrote the Aris story you wouldn't have gotten the response it got from me and many others.

Congrats on the positive reaction, your articles continue to improve.

Posted by Sammo21

Maybe if they didn't have any money involved in this at all it would be different. Take the money out and then there is nothing to get corrupt over, right?

Posted by development

@mnzy said:

@kaigan said:

FGC? More like WGC!

It stands for Worst Gaming Community.

I'm clever.

And wrong.

it sure as hell ain't the BGC

...Baldur's Gate Community?

Edited by tourgen

Here come the money. Time to scrub out all the interesting stories and fun. Got to get this shit presentable and marketable to the largest audience of lazy assholes possible.

Posted by Gold_Skulltulla

I agree that cracking down on collusion is a good idea here in general, but I do see the move mainly benefiting corporate interests at the possible expense of replacing smaller, more localized traditions. I actually thought it was kind of cool that the top players were close friends and willing to share with one another. Now, if I was watching the fights, I'd probably prefer to see a top-tier throwdown instead of a handshake, but still, I think pot-splitting at least shows community spirit.

I also see parallels in auto racing where multiple members of racing teams compete in the same race. Anyone more familiar with auto racing know if they employ similar rules there?

Posted by Baal_Sagoth

Very interesting! I only observe the FGC from the outside but the article was very easy to follow nontheless. Seem like an interesting dilemma, it'll be interesting to see how it works out for them.

Posted by SoldierG654342

@casper_ said:

I wish he included the video of spooky blowing up Sanford and Chris g. That was the first time the rule was enforced and its hilarious

Yeah, that was bananas.

One way around this would be to have players register their teams/characters when they sign up for the tournament. Of course that has it's own set of issues but seems like it could be a little better than making judgment calls.

Edited by mnzy

@sammo21 said:

Maybe if they didn't have any money involved in this at all it would be different. Take the money out and then there is nothing to get corrupt over, right?

These top players wouldn't come to your tournament then. The three mentioned events were in Atlanta, Texas and Sint Marteen and ChrisG is from New York, that's expensive.

Posted by Parsnip

This seems like such an obvious thing to have in competitions, I don't understand why people would be against it.

Posted by WampaLord

Great article Patrick! Well researched and very well written, a credit to gaming journalism.

Posted by Hadoken101

Very nice article @patrickklepek. Happy to see very well researched and in depth coverage of FGC here on the site. I think that the rule itself is will be for the best in the long run anyways. I also trust the tournament organizers to enforce it in a reasonable way especially considering that most of them have been around in the community for a very long time and they'll definitely be able to point out the bullshit.

Posted by heatDrive88

I also see parallels in auto racing where multiple members of racing teams compete in the same race. Anyone more familiar with auto racing know if they employ similar rules there?

It's true with auto racing - teams will purposely order team members to do things like force opposing teams into situations so they don't get points for the manufacturer's championship, or they will purposely allow team members to pass favorably so they can get more points to manipulate the point rankings.

But to be fair, I'm not 100% sold that this kind of team play is entirely in the spirit of these fighting game competitions because it allows so much more room for manipulation.

I also agree pot-splitting can be done "amicably" for the reasons of community friendliness (who are we to judge if someone does this out of good/generosity), but you have to admit it looks really shady.

Posted by Humanity

Cool thing about Evo is that even if you're not into fighting games you can tune in to top 8 or even the semi finals and clearly see one person outperform the other in a time appropriate fashion. You don't have to be a Street Fighter expert to see, yah that guy beat the shit out of that other dood and it was exciting! This is a stark contrast to games like StarCraft or Dota which not only take significantly longer but also require a lot more knowledge from the spectator to understand what they're watching. Yet strangely enough, DOTA2 players are considered real athletes now but EVO winners go home with a few thousand dollars in their pocket IF they make it to the finals and actually win.

Online
Edited by churrific

@jakob187: It almost seems like they're too much of a community. It's sort of weird that that community dynamic is simultaneously the best and worse thing. Lol friendships need to take a backseat during grandfinals.

Posted by Ithmoliar

Excellent article! Really informative!

Edited by blabbermouth64

I really enjoyed the article. I went to Evo this year and it was my first competitive tournament. It was a really cool experience being among the FGC and I am hoping to go further into it.

I would love to read more articles on various gaming communities! Similar to the coverage of Eve Online. Any plans on doing any more articles on the FGC?

Keep up the good work, Patrick.

Posted by Sooty

@kaigan said:

FGC? More like WGC!

It stands for Worst Gaming Community.

I'm clever.

Yeah fuck those tournament organisers for running tournaments while making little to no profit, and all the players that have donated towards various charities.

Posted by Conciliator

Good work Patrick. Giant Bomb has long been an authority on reporting collusion.

Posted by Anupsis

Nice job Patrick!

Posted by Cirdain

Fuck! Bookmarked I'll read later...

Posted by Jeffsekai

Fuck Chris G

Posted by Troispoint

@sammo21: Are you kidding? That would kill the pro scene.

Edited by MikeLemmer

@soldierg654342 said:

@casper_ said:

I wish he included the video of spooky blowing up Sanford and Chris g. That was the first time the rule was enforced and its hilarious

Yeah, that was bananas.

One way around this would be to have players register their teams/characters when they sign up for the tournament. Of course that has it's own set of issues but seems like it could be a little better than making judgment calls.

I don't think the organizers & fans would appreciate that. For example, my favorite part of EVO this year was when Infiltration's Akuma was shut down by PR's Balrog. Infiltration thought for a minute about it... and then brought out Hakan, a midtier champ who, when played right, utterly dominates Balrog. The crowd went nuts; this was crazy. Infiltration won; it was glorious. In a night awash with Akumas and safe picks, we saw a pro go out on a limb, pick a barely-played hard counter, and proceed to give the Match of the Night.

Making players register their teams/characters when they sign up would squelch those improvised counters and make the matches more boring & predictable.

Posted by Gold_Skulltulla

@heatdrive88: Yeah, I could have sworn I'd seen auto racing where two drivers from the same team were holding onto the 1 and 2 spots for a good chunk of the race, which I'm guessing made them very difficult to pass. This actually seems more unfair than the FGC stuff because it puts single member racing teams at a disadvantage, while at least fighting games are almost always a 1-on-1 situation where superior skill can win out. But that's a slightly different side of the collusion issue than the one being discussed here.

Posted by MasturbatingestBear

This was a fantastic article Patrick. Unfortunately, I have a serious problem with organizers deciding when they think a match is fixed or not. Sorry but picking a character in a fighting game that is notoriously under-powered does not instantly mean that a person is throwing the game.Unless they question the players and they subsequently admit to it I don't think this is at all enforceable.

Posted by RotBot

I have no idea who the familiar face in that picture is supposed to be? The guy in the white shirt slightly resembles Sean Coonce, maybe?

Posted by Pudge

OOH! COLLUSION!!

-Jerry "The King" Lawler

Edited by MasterRain

@masturbatingestbear: If you know FGs you know when a match is being thrown. You are literally making stuff up to make yourself annoyed. There is a reason everyone knew Infiltration's Hakan was legit and Chris's phoenix wright was not. Rule has been at evo for 10 years, never had a problem.

@gold_skulltulla: Haha that racing stuff sounds like the tour de france, where you need a big team of people to ride with you to help you win with slipsteam and stuff.

Posted by Little_Socrates

Here's what I have to say about that Chris G and JWong fight; simply put, these dudes show up to almost every major tournament and end up playing each other almost constantly. It doesn't surprise me at all that they didn't feel like doing the same matchup they do several times per year. I get that it's anticlimactic or whatever, but it's just as anticlimactic that every Marvel tournament has the same dudes at the top every time.

Posted by Pop

Cool article Patrick, I haven't watched MvC3 in a long while, I thought the SF4 top 8 was freaking awesome.

Is this rule only for the finals? what if 2 players from the same team meet each other and one is better than the other in general, but when fighting each other the other one always wins, would it be breaking the rules to make a strategic flop?

Posted by PulledaBrad

Man that was a long ass article for something the White Sox learned back in 1919.

Edited by ChosenOne

I don't get it, the collusion issue largely doesn't seem to be about the money. So it's often just friends not playing seriously against each other? Are they afraid their friendship will be affected by playing competitively?

Edited by theinnkeeper

@patrickklepek, your setting a bad example. Your not actually supposed to do research when covering the FGC!

Anyway, great article. Glad to see the FGC getting coverage on Giant Bomb. You should drop by UFGT next year in Chicago. It's run by Keits, the Divekick guy.

Posted by FreedomTown

Paid tournaments, MLG, E-Sports......downfall of society.

Edited by zombiesatemycereal

@sammo21 said:

Maybe if they didn't have any money involved in this at all it would be different. Take the money out and then there is nothing to get corrupt over, right?

Why would you even bother having tournaments then? Might as well just do it all online.

Posted by BillyMaysRIP

This a really great article, and Patrick has obviously reached out to many people to help shed light on the issue.

A really good case study for match-fixing and pot-splitting is sumo wrestling. Sumo wrestling has been for years plagued by yaochō (corruption) and there has been a ton of research into fixing a problem that seems almost endemic. Some of the most accessible stuff about yaochō is by Steven Levitt, who co-authored the rather famous Freakanomics - but his earlier academic paper on Sumo is amazingly detailed an really is a fascinating read. You can read it here. There are a ton a parallels between the highly competitive but close-knit communities, and a lot of lessons that the Fighting game scene can learn from the problems of sumo.

Posted by Zleunamme

Fighting games should start implementing the Fraud Detection warning from Dive Kick. If there's a way to determine that guys are tanking matches on purpose. The organizers of EVO should bar those players from participating in future events.

At what point will performance enhancing drugs and HGH be topic of controversy?

Posted by Griffinmills

The actual rule, which was paraphrased near the beginning of the article:

"Collusion of any kind with your competitors is considered cheating. If the Tournament Director determines that any competitor is colluding to manipulate the results or intentionally underperforming, the collaborating players may be immediately disqualified. This determination is to be made at the sole discretion of the Tournament Director. Anyone disqualified in this manner forfeits all rights to any titles or prizes they might have otherwise earned for that tournament."

I like Scoops and love watching fighting game tournaments (particularly leveluplive streams like WNF and The Runback) so I'm happy to see some Giant Bomb FGC coverage from Patrick. The article felt a little like it was repeating itself but that may be because of the interviews and quotes on the rule change and collusion topic. As others have mentioned, it feels a bit lopsided in favor of the representation of those supporting the rules change. Contributing to this may be the pressure from Shoryuken.com and others(?) that will pull coverage and otherwise wield the big stick of repercussions on those that dissent.

Posted by DonutFever

Now see why people keep saying "COLLUSION" on Salty Bet.

Posted by SoldierG654342

@soldierg654342 said:

@casper_ said:

I wish he included the video of spooky blowing up Sanford and Chris g. That was the first time the rule was enforced and its hilarious

Yeah, that was bananas.

One way around this would be to have players register their teams/characters when they sign up for the tournament. Of course that has it's own set of issues but seems like it could be a little better than making judgment calls.

I don't think the organizers & fans would appreciate that. For example, my favorite part of EVO this year was when Infiltration's Akuma was shut down by PR's Balrog. Infiltration thought for a minute about it... and then brought out Hakan, a midtier champ who, when played right, utterly dominates Balrog. The crowd went nuts; this was crazy. Infiltration won; it was glorious. In a night awash with Akumas and safe picks, we saw a pro go out on a limb, pick a barely-played hard counter, and proceed to give the Match of the Night.

Making players register their teams/characters when they sign up would squelch those improvised counters and make the matches more boring & predictable.

Yeah, it's not a great solution, but the potential alternative is TOs going "You weren't playing very well. Collusion!" Maybe I just need to have more faith in TOs.

Edited by ScreamingGhost

This happened a a day or so after they announced those changes. Great article Patrick keep them coming. The video is a blow out between Spooky and Chris G and Sanford for supposed colluding, shows how tired some of the organizers are fed up with collusion. There's some strong language, nothing crazy but you've been warned.

Posted by Rorie

@billymaysrip: I remember reading that in Freakonomics. Pretty interesting stuff; I'll give the full article a whirl.

Staff
Posted by Scrawnto

@customotto said:

@mnzy said:

@kaigan said:

FGC? More like WGC!

It stands for Worst Gaming Community.

I'm clever.

And wrong.

it sure as hell ain't the BGC

...Baldur's Gate Community?

The Baller Gangsta Community, obviously.

Posted by shodan2020

Great piece. Great read. Thanks, Scoops! :)

Posted by kollay

Splendid work, Scoops!

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