If you're into your fighting games, you were almost certainly glued to Evo 2016 over the weekend. The Las Vegas–held competition brought together the finest players of a host of one-on-one fighters, including Mortal Kombat XL, Pokken Tournament, Tekken 7, and Killer Instinct. Of course, the one game to really watch was Super Smash Bros. Melee, like we told you here, but Evo 2016's climactic contest was reserved for its newest addition, Street Fighter V.
Which means that, in the crisp morning light of July 18, we can all gaze upon the game's debut world champion, South Korean Nash extraordinaire Lee "Infiltration" Seon-woo, the world number one going into Evo. He defeated Japan's R. Mika-using Keita "Fuudo" Ai in last night's grand final of a competition that attracted a whopping 5,000 entrants. Not bad, considering Street Fighter V only came out in February.
Infiltration is, naturally, a happy man about this—although his tweet proclaiming just that doesn't exactly paint the picture of a man having the time of his life. Bad angle, perhaps. Or, more likely, those are some complex emotions to deal with, right there.
[tweet text="I just won #Evo2016 ! I am so happy! Thank you everyone for your support! <3 pic.twitter.com/c2My47fv0K" byline="— RΛZΞR INFILTRATION (@INFILTRATION85)" user_id="INFILTRATION85" tweet_id="754910160322109440" tweet_visual_time="July 18, 2016"]
A rather better angle is this one, from the crowd at the Las Vegas Convention Center, shot by YouTube user DopeDojo. It captures the moment that Infiltration landed the final, Evo-winning blow.
Look at the size of that crowd. This competitive video game playing lark, it'll never catch on.
Of the top eight finishers in the Street Fighter V tournament, three used Nash and two Chun-Li. The Ryu-playing Hajime "Tokido" Taniguchi, ranked second ahead of Evo and expected to be right up there among the highest finishers, especially given he'd beaten Infiltration only last month, could only finish in 13th. New Yorker Justin Wong, widely considered to be one of the finest Street Fighter players the West has produced and with a number of titles already won in 2016, tied in the same position after a poor showing with Karin.