It’s now been just over a week since Phantom 2022 rocked Sydney – hopefully long enough for all attendees and competitors to have fully recovered!
Phantom was a truly massive weekend for our elite Smash players and for the whole community, with 575 entrants across Melee, Ultimate, P+ and Rivals of Aether. They traveled from the outer suburbs, from regional NSW, from interstate – and from overseas. Thanks to the diplomatic efforts of players like MF|Joshman and recognition as a Platinum event from the Smash World Tour, this Phantom boasted many of the most respected names in Smash, and was streamed live by VGBootCamp, Mang0 and Ludwig Ahgren to thousands all over the world.
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.