Last Saturday, while many were awaiting the livestream for Paragon, the last APEX 2015 qualifier of the season, the French could attend Republic of Fighters Winter Session in Paris. In the colourful French atmosphere in an IT engineering school, players could compete in Smash Bros. for Wii U (Smash 4), Brawl and Melee. Interest was high, as each event had completely filled up two days in advance. The event was broadcasted on jeuxvideo.fr, the biggest French gaming site, through Dailymotion, Frances own live streaming provider. As such, most tuning in were likely from France, making it even more impressive that a little over 350 people were watching.
The 5th iteration of the highly successful B.E.A.S.T series took place on the weekend of the 9th of January in the city of Göteborg, Sweden. Lolex and Armada reprised their role as the main tournament organizers for the event. Their primary goal was to surpass the old turnout records held by the now legendary Epita Smash Arena 2 (Paris, 2008), which they ended up smashing with around 438 players from all over Europe, 369 of which participated in Melee singles. B.E.A.S.T V not only became the largest European tournament of all time but also the 5th largest Melee singles tournament in the world.
Amsah’s Sheik, age 10, died Sunday, the 11th of January, in Gothenburg after a gruesome battle with a well-known Swedish sniper. An audience numbering in the hundreds looked on in horror as soul-crushing downsmashes were followed up by earth-shattering fairs. For the first time in a decade, Amsah’s Sheik was 4-stocked in a tournament, on camera for all to see. As her dying gasps echoed through the venue, everyone present realized this was the end of an era. The culprit, Armada’s Peach, was extradited to the United States to face trial.
With the exception of Armada(SE) and Leffen(SE) who will be attending Paragon in the States this weekend, most European players are still recovering from the intense weekend that was B.E.A.S.T 5(Beast5), however the French don’t have time for breaks as the Winter Edition of the Republic of Fighters(RoF) series is already happening this Saturday, an FGC-centered tournament hosted in Paris that has adopted the Smash games ever since RoF2 in 2013. Unlike the 2014 Winter Edition this one also features Melee, Smash Bros. for Wii U(Smash4) and Brawl.
Over the past years, the Smash Bros. series has gained a lot of momentum through its inclusion at several large FGC events in the US, the Melee documentary and the release of a new installment. The (renewed) global interest has also impacted the European scene, though the local scenes thriving is still hard to convert to a unified continent, not in the last place because of language barriers and significant travel expenses. Several key members of the European Smash community have sought to remedy this, and this portal is hopefully the first initiative of many.