The Big House 6
The Smash scene came alive in Dearborn, Michigan the weekend of Oct 7-9 with the sixth edition of The Big House tournament series hosted by UM Smash. Plup, Wobbles, ESAM and MVD entered the tournament, with Bear serving as a TO for Smash 4. Also along for the ride were our two Key to the PG House winners -- Mr R and Wrath -- who competed under the Panda banner for this special occasion.
Wobbles had a successful early run through Melee Singles, entering the Top 64 on the Winner’s side only to fall to Mew2King [1-2] in the first round. With the two legendary players tied a game apiece, M2K swapped his Peach for Marth to deal with the stubborn ICs. While Wobbles demonstrated an impressive ability to handle his opponent SOPO, M2K took game 3 and moved on in Winners.
Meanwhile, Plup found himself likewise working his way through the Losers bracket after taking a surprising loss to up-and-coming MDVA Marth main Zain [0-2]: fatefully setting our Pandas on a collision course.
With Wobbles falling into 25th place, defeated by his teammate [0-3], Plup advanced to face Shroomed. Opting for Fox over a Sheik mirror match, the set came down to the last stock in game 5, where Plup saw his singles run cut short at 17th place by a canny edge guard [2-3].
Plup teamed up with Westballz for Melee Doubles, and the pair made quick work of their opponents until coming up against Android and Armada in Winners Top 8. Game 3 saw the tides turned in Team Alliance’s favor, as they closed in on Plup/Westballz’s 2-0 lead. The final game was anyone’s win, that is until Android executed an incredible double kill to take out our team [3-2].
Tossed to the Losers, Plup/Westballz faced-off against team MacD/Ice in the quarter-finals. The set once again went to game 5, when a fatal miscommunication resulted in our players chasing the same edge-hog which cost them the tournament [2-3].
Although opting out of Melee singles this time around, ESAM entered doubles with Kage -- a Marth player from Montreal. Considering their lack of experience working as team, the players proved to make quite the duo, ultimately falling to Swedish Deligh/DruggedFex [0-2] and DJ Nintendo/The Moon [0-2] for 17th place.
MVD found a new nemesis in Rayquaza07 whose Rosalina proved to be problematic for our favorite Diddy, double eliminating him from the tournament. With an evident lack of match-up experience, MVD first fell to the Michigan native [0-2] in Phase 2 pools. The rivals faced-off once again in the Top 32 Losers, where MVD attempted to gain the upper hand by first switching to MewTwo, followed by Cloud. However, it proved to be too little, and while MVD was finally able to take a game he ended his run in 25th place [1-3].
ESAM likewise saw his time in Singles cut short, coming in 33rd place after an early loss at the hands of Frozen’s Corrin in Phase 1 Pools [1-2], followed by another close set versus CaptainZack (Bayonetta) [1-2] in Phase 2.
Our European Key to PG House winner -- Mr R -- did his Panda Hoodie proud, coming in 4th place after losing to Abadango’s MewTwo in the 1st round of Top 32 [2-3] to enter the Top 8 on the Losers side. The seasoned Sheik player then made his way through Mr E, Nairo and Dabuz until ultimately falling to Komorikiri’s Sonic in the Losers semi-finals [1-3].
Wrath -- the teenage Sonic player who wowed us with his performance in the North American Key to PG House qualifier -- came in 49th place after losing to DKwill (Donkey Kong) 1-2], and Dom (Villager) [0-2].
ESAM/MVD (Cloud/Pika) went up against Ally/Mew2King (Mario/Cloud) in Phase 2 Pools, where a few critical errors cost them the set [0-2] -- most notably when ESAM’s attempt to rescue MVD with thunder resulted in his teammate's death.
The Pandas moved on to counter Marss/Pugwest (Marth/Zero Suit Samus) in the first round of Losers Top 8. While each game was a close contest between the opposing teams, ESAM/MVD were only able to secure one win. After losing game 3, MVD made the switch to Diddy -- a decision which saw the set end with ESAM left alone to fend off Marss and Pug, and ultimately leaving our Panda team in 7th place [1-3].
If you’re wondering where you can catch your favorite Panda smashers next: Plup, ESAM and MVD will close off the month with Come To Papa 2, a Florida tournament featuring all four Smash Bros. games, held Oct. 22-23 in Orlando.
Don’t forget to start November off with the best play Melee has to offer courtesy of Smash Summit, which returns for its third installment the weekend of Nov. 3-6. We are honored to yet again have Plup included among the 10 players invited to partake in this exclusive tournament.