The Evolution Championship Series (EVO), one of the biggest video game fighting tournaments in the world, returns to Mandalay Bay from August 5-7 for the first time since 2019.
EVO canceled in 2020 due to COVID-19, then went exclusively online in 2021, much to the disappointment of many fighting game fans.
“Even if we ignore that fighting games are historically rooted in side-by-side, head-to-head competition, dating back to the late 80s and early 90s…the nature of 1v1 competition is dramatized when you are in person,” says EVO General Manager Rick Thiher. “All the ways that escalate this competition, all the ways that inspire camaraderie and rivalry, are much harder to see when you’re sitting in front of a computer.”
EVO returns with new backing from Sony and RTS, the companies that bought it in 2021. This acquisition, Thiher says, has “absolutely impacted the show in almost entirely what I consider good manners.”
Thiher promises the tournaments will be bigger than ever and the staging will be more impressive. Competitors will compete in games such as Street Fighter: V, Dragon Ball Fighter Z, Tekken 7 and Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate. A convention space will also be dedicated
to casual games, an arcade fighting stick museum, a vendor village, and demo stations to try out games like Street Fighter 6.
“EVO is a place to fall in love with fighting games, even if you’re not already invested in that community or those games,” says Thiher. “It’s an opportunity for you to meet people who can be in your life for the rest of your life.”
For more information, visit evo.gg.
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