GG:Strive Joins CWL Online With First Interstate Showdown

When we write fighting game history, 2021 is going to go down as the Year of Gear. The bold presentation and fortuitous timing of Guilty Gear: Strive has brought the hard-rocking franchise from the fringe of the FGC into the mainstream. And the willingness of Arc System Works to remodel some aspects of the core system has invited many new Guilty Gear players to make Strive their entry point, mixing it up with anime veterans on more even footing. 

With all that momentum it was inevitable that GG:ST would make it onto the CouchWarriors League circuit as our newest featured title. Last month’s Battle Arena Nightclub was the first opportunity for players to pick up ranking points on the Strive leaderboard. But even that clash of Melbourne’s finest turned out to just be an appetizer for August’s CWL Online event – the first real chance to see who could stand supreme in this new game at the national level.

Read more

CouchWarriors League New Points System Aug 2021

If you ask the question, “why are the CouchWarriors events all called Ranbats?”  It’s short for Ranking Battle – a long standing tradition in the community, offering players an incentive to compare their progress and get ever stronger! Today we’re announcing an update to the point system to make it more inclusive of players of all levels.

Of course, all our Ranking Battle live events are not just about tournaments, they’re perhaps moreso about socialising, casual matches and even long sets, with a great opportunity to learn and improve.

By also having tournaments this adds some goals and structure for a day’s play – and the point system is part of that. Tying all our offline and online events together via the points is CouchWarriors League – the league ladder tracks each game and region, which you can filter here on the website. This has been a great way to determine seeding and invitations for events, and prize rewards.

Now as we dive into the 2nd half of this year’s season under CouchWarriors League, we’ve updated the system, in consultation with the tournament teams.Lets take a look:

What’s new and why do we like it?

  • Expands the point system down to all participants, not just top 4-8
  • This means participation is encouraged for those who think they can’t place, they can build up a small base of points just by entering consistently.
  • We have kept the weighting towards offline tournaments vs online, however all points totals are increased, so if you play consistently, even online, you have a chance to post a good score
  • This provides a nice second split/half season boost as we go towards finals. We won’t reset the points completely, but it provides an effective reset for those actively playing thanks to the increase.
  • Still acknowledges season 1 players who get a kick start, recognizing due to COVID, its been an uneven year for live events.
  • The system gives more scope for flexibility in determining prizes and finals seeding.

The point system will be in effect from July events onwards! Yes, that means you can earn more points for playing any of the current tournaments! Register here

Rewards

We recognise this year has been uneven due to Covid, so some regions may have more events than others. This is why we will award end of season prizes to the top players in every game – in each region.

So if you’re the best player in a feature title in your state, or online, which is treated as its own region, you’ll be rewarded!

Current online feature titles are Street Fighter V, Guilty Gear Strive, Tekken 7 and Super Smash Bros Ultimate.  These run monthly, so there’s a tournament each week and a prize will be allocated each month.

An additional two titles, while not guaranteed to run an online tournament each month, are staples of offline and will also have an end of season prize: Dragon Ball FighterZ and Super Smash Bros Melee.

Prizes are to be announced as the season progresses. You can count on support from our excellent sponsors Astro and Mwave for starters.

Regular titles you find at your local ranbat are all tracked in the points system, and at minimum we will add rewards at the finals.

Finals

On finals we will be planning to conclude the CWLeague season at CWC – CouchWarriors Crossup – in December with a boosted prize pool and more, to be announced.

If it is impossible for us to run a live finals event, we will run an online invitational using the league ladder. Last year there were over $5,000 in prizes and we are aiming high for this year.  We will have more to share on this soon, but rest assured those points are worth striving for!

#BANC – Battle Arena NightClub Interviews & Recap

Sunday, July 11th saw a year of pent-up competitive energy unleashed from a highly unusual venue. Inflation Nightclub and Entertainment Complex has been a party fixture on Melbourne’s King Street for decades, but they’d never seen anything quite like the crowd of 240+ FGC diehards hollering over the noise of the venue to celebrate a knockout blow. 

 

BANC2021 in full swing

With a brief window to take advantage of lowered COVID restrictions but no way to facilitate a full-sized major, an event was planned to carry on the spirit of BAM in the best available venue, and thus we got to enjoy #BANC – Battle Arena Nightclub 2021.

Read more

ASTRO STEPS INTO THE RING AS THE PRESENTING PARTNER OF COUCHWARRIORS LEAGUE AND BAM

Australia’s premier fighting game esports league and its major event, are now powered by ASTRO GAMING

MEDIA RELEASE: ASTRO Gaming today announced it will be pulling on the gloves and supporting the Australian Fighting Game Community as it becomes the presenting partner of CouchWarriors League and BAM (Battle Arena Melbourne) for 2021-22. As the exclusive partner for headsets, CouchWarriors League will be equipped with ASTRO headsets for events, player prizes and commentators to call the action in top fighting game titles including Street Fighter V, Tekken 7 and Super Smash Bros Ultimate.

CouchWarriors League is the premier esports league for fighting game fans in Australia, with live events across the country in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide, along with online tournaments broadcast to thousands of monthly viewers. The CouchWarriors series of events has been an anchor for the fighting game community (FGC) for nearly 15 years. It welcomes grassroots play from casual matches to major tournaments.

Australia’s largest major FGC event, BAM, returns in May 2022, presented by ASTRO. BAM has been the home of amazing moments on the FGC world stage, featuring international talent as stops for world tours including Capcom Pro Tour and Tekken World Tour.

Most of all, it is a must attend for fighting game fans nationwide both for connecting with the community, and competing in the national championships. Over 1,000 unique competitors joined the fray in 2019.

“We are incredibly excited at ASTRO Gaming as a major supporter of fighting game esports globally, having sponsored major events including EVO World Championships, CEO and Combo Breaker. BAM is the equivalent major event on the Australian calendar having hosted thousands of competitors and world tours. As part of CouchWarriors League, we look forward to being part of the year-round hype and energy of the fighting game scene” Said Daniel Hall, Senior Category Portfolio Manager, Logitech G and ASTRO Gaming Australia.

“The passion and vibrancy of the fighting game scene calls for an equally passionate partner for the CouchWarriors League and we’re thrilled to have ASTRO on board, supporting the players and tournament organisers in the scene. We’re excited for what the partnership will bring to all our events from local live tournaments nationwide, to our regular online tournaments and major events like BAM. The pedigree and dedication to fighting games by ASTRO worldwide is unmatched” Added Daniel Chlebowczyk, Director of Events Engine, the partnership manager for CouchWarriors League.

The next event will be BANC – Battle Arena NightClub in Melbourne on July 11. https://smash.gg/banc 

Catch the live action across the CouchWarriors Twitch Channel and the CouchWarriors Smash Twitch Channel.

Follow the CouchWarriors League ladder and links to event registration at the official website:

Join the battle at CouchWarriorsLeague.com.au

BAM 2021 – Postponed to 2022. New Melbourne July Event planned

To all the FGC community from the dedicated BAM team, we are announcing the postponenment of BAM 2021. After careful consideration of the COVID safety state across Australia, and discussions with the venue we have taken the difficult decision to postpone.

We are moving BAM to its traditional month of May, 2022.  In its place, for those that can attend in Melbourne on July 11th, we will have a special alternative event we dub “BANC” or Battle Arena Nightclub. More on this below

Why Postpone

Due to the Melbourne lockdown recently, with a slow rate of changes to restrictions, the scope of the event has been affected. Adding to the decision, new hotspots in NSW and QLD have diminished the ability for interstate visitors to attend our community’s national event.

In this uncertain environment we cannot guarantee an event befitting the scale and style expected of BAM.

What about my BAM registration?

Our team will remove all registrations and refunds will be issued for BAM progressively over the coming week. The event listing itself will remain so you can keep your bookmark for smash.gg/bam12

We will reopen BAM registration closer to the event.

Alternative Event: BANC

We have an alternative event planned called Battle Arena NightClub (BANC) at the nightclub venue, Inflation in the Melbourne CBD. We recognise there are attendees who would still like to travel on the BAM dates, and take the opportunity to play in a fighting game major.

Looking to make the best we can out of the situation, this event will have big pot bonuses and prizes, at a unique venue.

Registration is found here: smash.gg/banc.

This event will be in a bar/nightclub venue opening up for us through the day, making for a cool fighting club atmosphere.

Pot bonus – $500 minimum (up to $1,000)
We are announcing at BANC there will be a Community prize bonus from CouchWarriors:
$500 for each of these titles. If the registrations for each hit 64 or more we will double it to 1,000

  • SFV
  • Tekken
  • Melee
  • Ultimate
  • DBFZ
  • Guilty Gear Strive

BAM Bounties in effect at the Battle Arena NightClub

The recently announce BAM bounties – which reward the top players at the end of June’s CouchWarriors League ladder in 5 feature titles – SFV, Tekken, Melee, Ultimate and DBFZ.

Top of points in each game will receive FREE entry to BANC and a $50 Mwave voucher

However those players are TARGETED.

The first player to beat that player in the tournament for that game at BANC will win a $50 voucher also.

CouchWarriors League Recap – May 2021

The fires of competition have burned more brightly than ever before across the CouchWarriors League, as we count down the days before the long-awaited BAM12 major. The month of May set a new all-time record for most ranking points on offer, impacting the race across all five CWL games.

In the past, the league rankings have often been dominated by a handful of regional champions who can reliably scoop their local tournament every time – but 2021 is looking different. Not only have we seen a few instances of top players traveling interstate to play spoiler for one event, but almost every game and region is seeing a more even spread of winners as the months roll on. It’s been the perfect way to foreshadow the inevitable clash for bragging rights we’ll see at BAM.

STREET FIGHTER V

Street Fighter May Results

Street Fighter V is likely still the most top-heavy national field, although no one name currently stands clearly above the rest. Defending CWL champion Ervin-Jason “pahnda” Garanovic took out the Queensland ranbat, holding Benjamin “Destiny74” Jakabfy off as he tried to repeat his breakthrough victory from April. Those two and Michael “GodlyEffect” Wright seem to be a step ahead of their competition this year, with Dale Roy the best of the rest as he finished 4th for the third month straight.

Down south, the Christian “ORDER|ROF” Dedalija comeback tour continued with another triumphant sweep of the Victorian ranbat. We also had a fresh face breaking up the podium as Austerzone took advantage of some earlier upsets to sweep into third place.

Xavier “DS|Somniac” Nardella fell to 5th in Victoria after one such upset, but his season continues to demonstrate the value of consistency. He once again backed up points at the ranbat with a huge run in the CouchWarriors Online Series, extending an undefeated netplay streak which has lasted months at this point.

Somniac stayed clean all the way through the bracket, including a smooth 3-0 over old rival Kevin “GG|bksama” Nguyen in Winners Finals. But the wheels finally came off in their Grand Final rematch. The matchup between the two evolved several times; bksama repeatedly chased down Somniac’s slippery Ed to take a set 3-1, prompting a more aggressive approach from Som after the reset. The adaptation was good enough to force a final game, but bksama found enough good hits to hang on for the win. With their head-to-head in games dead even for the night at 6-6, we can anticipate a real classic next time these two collide in a big offline set.

 

TEKKEN 7

Tekken results May

Tekken 7 saw even more hopefuls leaping into an already-packed points race, as noted Alisa lover Budget Chanel swept the Online Series event for his first 5 CWL points. Other fresh faces joined him in the top placings, including fellow grand finalist UoN|twygs and Thiogian “kamasutraspirit” Damalis.

Their appearance hampered the runs of championship hopefuls Harlem Barriball and Peter “Ravenboy” O’Flanagan, but like Somniac in SFV they were able to bolster those Online Series points with a second helping from the Queensland ranbat. There the Grand Finals saw a second consecutive showdown between kewlkats and Tom “yiggs” Ho, with Yiggs winning both sets to take the clear senior position in their rivalry.

Victoria’s contingent of players are beginning to fall a bit behind in the overall points race, due to less Online Series success and less consistent ranbat results. The one player holding firm month to month is DHT|Yagami, who successfully repeated his maiden win from April to easily lead the state going into their home major.

 

SMASH ULTIMATE

Ultimate results for May

I made big promises about the exciting state of Smash Ultimate heading into the 2021 season, and so far I doubt anybody is feeling disappointed. The breakout stars from 2020’s predominantly online tournaments trying to earn their place on the PR charts against the established stars of each state has been riveting narratively as well as a source of quality gameplay. Of course, the CWL Online Series remains home ground for many of these phenomenal young players, with WA’s Fryd Ryce especially prominent. He improved from 3rd to 2nd last month, and in May his rise proved to be inevitable as he took Grand Finals over our nation’s leading Lucario, chizzL.

After Fryd Ryce clutched the Pokemon battle in Winners Finals, chizzL reached into his insanely deep character pool for the eventual rematch. After failing to dent Fryd Ryce with Ridley or Wolf, chizzL seemed to really hit on something with Jigglypuff. His deft control to float around and even under thundershocks caused a stir in the commentary box, and some clutch rests were enough to take a game back. But Fryd Ryce steadied on his Lylat Cruise counterpick, and sealed an exciting victory to stay in the overall points race.

This season’s established “big 4” of Victoria continued to brawl over the top places in their latest meeting. Bradley “GZ|DD” Kun finally got one back against sometime doubles partner Jonathan “KANGA|Jdizzle” Douglas, who had taken the honours over DD in Grand Finals the last two months. With Jdizzle out of the way, DD just had to hold off CWL 2020 points leader Sebastian “GZ|SebPro101” Poli-Tabone to take home the win amidst an ultra-stacked Top 8.

In fact VIC was so stacked this month that it again spilled over into Queensland, where visiting VicHub PR honcho R!OT|THE GWIF made a big impression on their May ranbat. Kyra “Spammage” Corben ultimately defended the home state’s pride to secure a second consecutive win. Daniel “Recon” Guo made a big step up to secure a podium finish and leapfrog up the season rankings.

And while all of this goes on, reigning CWL Smash Ultimate champion Joshua “KANGA|Ghost” Francis continues to rack up the wins in Adelaide’s Cheese League monthlies. He’s now 3/3 for trophies there this season, in absolutely lethal form, and looks to already be a certainty for another Season Finale appearance in 2021.

 

SMASH MELEE

Melee results for May

Over in Smash Melee it’s actually the absence of the defending champion which promises the most interest for this season. With Sora taking a hiatus the Victorian crown is the subject of a running duel between Miles “LGC|DonB” Dobney and KANGA|Dekar. This month it was the Legacy veteran stepping up, with a win in the ranbat and a strong 2nd in an Online Series dominated by out-of-state ringers.

Queensland remained highly unpredictable, with neither the March nor April ranbat winners appearing in the Top 8 this time around. Instead Carlisle “Kami” Miller improved from 3rd last month to claim the maximum 10 ranking points, while a chorus of new names also entered themselves onto the CWL 2021 leaderboard.

 

DRAGONBALL FIGHTERZ

DBFZ results for May

DBFZ is the “new” game on the block for CouchWarriors League this season, but the community is very well established with some clear leading characters set up to control this inaugural championship.

Queensland’s rising star RelatingBeef registered back-to-back ranbat victories while relegating MitchN64 to the bridesmaid’s role for the third time this season. The 10 points weren’t free, however – RelatingBeef took a humbling loss to Phillip “APEX|Newspectre” Repia along the way. Newspectre also registered his first CWL points at the event with an eventual 5th place – something to build on in coming months.

RelatingBeef attempted to double up with a win in the CWL Online Series, but was thwarted by a strong field including noted netplayer the_racoonisme and interstate rivals from Victoria. Ray “Agent17805” Usanto in particular was poised to maintain the highest individual points total across all CWL games just by making Grand Finals – which he accomplished. But once he got there, “Agent Numbers” ran afoul of Nolbie, who made a big comeback to CWL competition this month.

Not only did Nolbie take the W in the Online Series, but we got to watch a repeat of the match in the VIC ranbat – also ending in defeat for Agent. This set Nolbie up against Agent’s long-time rival John “ZEDDD” Le, one of a handful of players good enough to make leaderboard for multiple games this CWL season. Nolbie proved the stronger in DBFZ however, completing a stellar overall performance for May.

 

That’s all the results from May’s CWL competition! With so many events every month, it’s important to keep checking the league website and smash.gg/league/couchwarriors-league-2021/ for the upcoming schedule. And remember #BAM12 is just a month away too – smash.gg/bam12 to register for the events there. See you all next month!

BAM12 Registration Roundup!

Get hype! The biggest AusFGC news of the year is the biggest AusFGC event of the year: BAM 2021.

Battle Arena Melbourne is making its comeback in 2021. Held from July 9th-11th, #BAM12 will feature the peak of competitive play for fighting games across Australia as part of the CouchWarriors League, as well as a rare chance for our top talent to battle world-class opposition. Expanding the gaming on offer, alongside BAM will be ITZ Gaming PC LAN (more on that below)!

BAM’s status as Australia’s top Major on the official circuits brings together players and broadcasters from all sorts of games, and CouchWarriors are going in even harder on that big-tent ethos with this year’s event. Whether you count yourself among the hardcore competitors, niche game specialists, casual fans, artists, cosplayers, or game developers, #BAM12 has something to offer.

 

You can buy your ticket to the show – $25 for spectators, $60 for competitors and casual play, along with sign up to individual events through the main portal at smash.gg/BAM12. Now, read on for a quick blow-by-blow of the individual attractions that will make this another amazing BAM!

Registrations are open now at smash.gg/BAM12

OPEN-ENTRY BRACKETS & COMMUNITY TOURNAMENT SCHEDULE

The heart and soul of BAM, our TO’s will be running official brackets for the following games over the weekend: 

  • Street Fighter V: Champion Edition 
  • Tekken 7 
  • Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Singles & Doubles) 
  • Super Smash Bros. Melee (Singles & Doubles) 
  • Guilty Gear Strive 
  • Dragon Ball FighterZ 
  • Mortal Kombat 11 
  • Soul Calibur VI 
  • Dead Or Alive 6 
  • Killer Instinct 
  • Rivals of Aether 
  • Virtua Fighter 5: Final Showdown
  • Brawlhalla 

 

That’s a TON of chances for you to become a BAM champion this year! All of these tournaments will feature their own prizes, with timetables staggered across the weekend so you can fit in as many sets as possible. Schedule will be released soon.

 

We’re also producing a second schedule of community-led tournaments, featuring a broad cross-selection of cult-hit games, special rulesets and other fan favourite stipulations. Check the schedule closer to the date so you don’t miss out on these wild and wonderful side events!

 

ARTIST’S ALLEY RETURNS 

Artist's Alley announcement

After a great reception for the community artists appearing at past BAM events, we’re renewing our efforts to attract more amazing local creatives to table at BAM12! However, table space will still be limited compared to a normal convention, so make sure you fill in your application at the link below ASAP (closes June 18th).
Those artists who do secure a spot will be showcasing their work to the entire Australian FGC, as well as the audience of the ITZ Gaming LAN event n! The Artist’s Alley is open to creatives from a variety of disciplines, even if their work doesn’t focus on fighting game characters. We just want to see some incredible art at BAM12!

bit.ly/BAM2021Artists

 

BAM12 INDIECADE

Indiecade announcement

Indie game developers have a special reason to have their work appear at BAM. We’re eager to promote the work of local devs who are creating all genres of game to shine before our huge audience of passionate gamers. While it doesn’t have to be a competitive game, indie devs who have presented at BAM before have relished the insightful feedback on mechanics and game balance from attendees. Fill in the application form below (closes June 6th) to negotiate space for your demo or other preview in our dedicated indiecade space on the main BAM floor! 

bit.ly/BAM2021IndieArcade 

 

VOLUNTEERS

Volunteer applications open

Of course, every BAM runs on the skill, charisma and pluck of our heroic volunteers – community members who take the chance to help ensure that the event lives up to its long tradition of excellence. Volunteers get free spectator passes and can also register normally as a competitor – we will work with you to ensure that your volunteer duties don’t clash with your tournament matches! We also treat volunteers to food & drink throughout the weekend, and access to the famed BAM afterparty once the festivities are all wrapped up. It takes all-hands-on-deck to run an event of this size, so fill in the form below, join our TO staff and loyal community, and do your bit to make BAM12 a hit!

bit.ly/BAM2021Volunteer

 

STREAMING TO FANS AT HOME AROUND THE WORLD

As befits the status of an international Major, BAM12 will feature simultaneous streaming broadcast for many of the official brackets, as well as some community tournaments! A list of the main games and streams is below, with full details to be announced closer to the event. Note that some official world series events will instead be featured on the international channels for those circuits.

twitch.tv/couchwarriors – Street Fighter V, Tekken 7, Mortal Kombat 11

twitch.tv/couchwarriorssmash – Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (Singles & Doubles)

twitch.tv/melbournemelee – Super Smash Bros. Melee (Singles & Doubles)

twitch.tv/couchwarriors2 – Dragonball FighterZ, Guilty Gear Strive

Further channels for more events to be announced

 

ALL THE MAKINGS OF GREATNESS

Pulling off Australia’s biggest fighting game event ever isn’t easy – but luckily, CouchWarriors has received gracious support for #BAM12 both within the community, and without. We have the tireless efforts of the CouchWarriors committee and regional organizers to thank, along with all of our outstanding volunteers who will be giving their time to make BAM a reality. Our long-time PC hardware sponsor Mwave have once again pledged their support to the event as well as the broader CWLeague tournament season. 

Mwave Sponsorship announcement

Furthermore, this year marks a new partnership with ITZ Gaming LAN – their 1000-seat BYOC LAN will be taking place under the same roof as #BAM12 over the same weekend. We have arranged for both events to be open for spectators from the other sidegiving attendees the chance to take in even MORE exciting tournament action, as well as our range of exhibiting artists and Indiecade developers! Check out ITZ Gaming on social media for further details, or to book a BYOC spot for their event.

 

It’s going to be an absolutely frenetic weekend, a momentary gaming paradise under one massive roof. Don’t forget to register on smash.gg/BAM12 – and we’ll see all of you in July!

 

CouchWarriors League 2021 – The Season So Far!

Get ready for the next battle – because CouchWarriors League is back for 2021!

Rising from the ashes of last year like a wakeup shoryu, Australia’s first unified fighting game circuit has begun a fresh season, now with more games and more events to compete in!

With monthly ranbat events in four state centers and the revamped CouchWarriors Online Series, there’s a huge expansion in the amount of season points available – which seems destined to produce a much tighter title race in each of the five featured fighting games.

Read more

MWAVE and CouchWarriors League Partnership 2021

We are proud to announce Mwave is supporting CouchWarriors League, which incliudes BAM, as PC Retail Partner!
Mwave have long been a fantastic supporter of the scene, providing digital prize vouchers and the latest awesome tech for our online tournaments in 2020.  Building on that tradition, Mwave is officially supporting the league through 2021
To celebrate, MAY IS MWAVE MONTH and we have prizes for May online & offline events across the country.
  • Each online tournament has Mwave vouchers, $100 1st and $50 2nd.
  • 10 Tournaments at Melb, Bris and Adelaide offline Ranbats in May will receive $50 1st and $20 2nd. (Allocation to be announced)
  • Social Media prize draw for everyone to enter (coming soon)
  • Prize Support across BAM tournaments and Door Prizes to be announced soon!

Make sure you show your appreciation by visiting MWave anytime you need PC parts, accessories and tech at www.mwave.com.au

BAM Returns July 9th to 11th at MCEC!

That’s right. BAM is coming back on July 9th to 11th, 2021 at Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

The FGC’s biggest national event will be returning with the hype, community and competition we all love.  This year BAM will be colocated with ITZ LAN, a 1,000 seat BYOC PC LAN. Making this “ITZ BAM” even bigger for the gaming community.

Stay tuned for Registration info and more news and updates!

1 2 3