The 64 Free For All is a question and answer session with some of the biggest names in Smash 64, plus a bonus section where this time Dasit Mane will voice his thoughts. 6 questions, 4 top personalities. Today we have four players from all walks of life in Smash. Bacorn, the genius mastermind behind the event. KeroKeroppi, a frequenter of this feature who is an elite player on the rise. K19 | $$$ Jim $$$, a recently sponsored player and host of The Dream Land podcast who is breaking onto the console scene in a big way. Janitor, The Boss of this event who is much more than an epic combo master.
- Boss Battle 2 is proving to be very creative in their financing of the event. As opposed to other majors we typically see, they have decided to make the entrance fee cover not only the venue, but also housing and food costs. What is your opinion on using such a structure? Do you prefer having costs go only to the venue so a more impressive venue can be made affordable?
Ben “Bacorn” Corn: When Shears approached me with this idea, I definitely thought it would set BB2 apart and give the attendees a lot of bang for their buck. I feel like having food and housing provided actually GIVES something to the attendee, as opposed to using it on decorations and such. However, this is not something one should do for tournaments without careful consideration to the tournament’s costs and such. Our margin is crazy thin and has required a lot of delicate planning to make a reality. If I were another tournament wanting to do this, I would first lock down a decent sponsor so you have extra capital to help. Also, there are very few venues better than Boss Battle Games!
Joey “KeroKeroppi” Speziale: I love it. The 64 community is so close that I think BB (being a 64 exclusive) can definitely pull off something like this. Including food and housing in the cost for a tournament like Genesis or SmashCon might be tricky, but I think for BB it’s absolutely perfect. The 64 community is like family. I don’t think anybody minds that we’ll all be hanging out with each other in the same hotel. I’m really looking forward to this change actually.
Jim “K19 | $$$ Jim $$$” Orris: Obviously this is SICK. I’m sure everyone else is saying the same thing. If anything, I’m a bit concerned about the low-cost of the event. It seems like Ben’s putting in a lot of his own money into this, with no intent of making any of it back. That seems messed up to me. The amount of TIME and EFFORT it takes to make a huge event is staggering. To do that with zero organizational support, like you might have at a supermajor, is even more intense. To do that in Indiana of all places? Get outta here. It seems like the people who can make that happen should be paid for their work. Instead, I’m sure Ben’s pretty far in the red. Support your community organizers.
Robert “Janitor” Miller: I think that the structure of financing that Ben and others put together for this event was amazing and I’m sure it was a huge influence on the amount of people who were able to attend. I’m sure that attendees will be much more attainable with this type of financing than the normal tournaments that we are used to. However, bigger tournaments like G3 were able to bring hundreds of players partially because of the type of venue they were able to secure. I hope to see more tournaments set up in the same way Boss Battle 2 is so we can have a more consistent flow of players heading to tournament.
- Continuing the trend that has been seen in 64 for the past couple years, Boss Battle 2 has decided to shake up the rules of its event. This time, coaching will be legal throughout the event. This has been a point of much contention in the community. How do you feel about coaching? What would you be your ideal coaching ruleset?
Bacorn: There is precedence for coaching in the greater FGC. I feel like the thing that will make coaching successful is having set rules in place for coaching (i.e. one-minute timer, no phone coaches, etc.). BB2 is FILLED with up and coming players so the focus shouldn’t be on how good they are right now, it should be on the best ways to make them better in the future and I think having KeroKeroppi coaching Dogs_Johnson from Indiana is going to help with that.
KeroKeroppi: Until this year, nobody cared about coaching. You could coach all you want and nobody would say anything about it. So coaching being legal at this tournament is not a change. It is the standard. Banning coaching is something new, which I am an active supporter of.
If there was a way to guarantee every player had rights to the same coach, I would support it. But the idea of two beginners playing round 1 and one of them having Boomfan as a coach is disturbing to me. I’m not concerned with how top players will perform under a coaching ruleset. They’ll be fine. I’m concerned with the extreme disadvantage a player has if he’s about to play someone he should go even with and now his opponent has a top player as a coach.
K19 | $$$ Jim $$$: Coaching’s funny because the people who are most against it seem to have this boogeyman mentality. Having someone talk to your opponent between sets isn’t going to give them some secret to beating you that they discovered watching you play for the past 7 minutes. One thing that’s really nice about having someone next to you is simply the ability of them to emotionally recenter you. It’s easy to get on-tilt playing the game, and having someone take 30 seconds to say, “Hey, remember your gameplan. You can do this.” is incredibly helpful. Basically, it’s a simple counter to Shears yelling out, “Baltimore!”
Janitor: Coaching is a very important to some smashers and detestable to the rest. I have no position on coaching because I have never participated in it. I understand the benefits of coaching and I’m sure that if it was allowed then it could make players perform better in tournament because a coach could help them rid their nerves or tell them to stop engaging in bad habits or unsafe options. Having someone there can help but I am not a big supporter or objector to coaching in short.
- At the last 64 major, SuPeRbOoMfAn suffered his second loss of the year. Not only that, it was his first 3rd place finish in North America since Apex 2014. While he had not lost since Genesis 3, there were a few moments where he looked rather mortal this year. How do you expect him to bounce back from this recent loss, both at Boss Battle 2 and going forward?
Bacorn: Boom will win BB2, I’m sure. There is some competition, of course, but Boom has extensive experience against people like Kero, Fireblaster, BarkSanchez and such. I honestly think in the next couple years, we will start seeing more majors won by non-Boom players. The growth of the 64 community has led to a lot of players getting good really fast.
KeroKeroppi: I wanna start by saying that Boom’s third place finish at SuperBoomed was directly the result of bad seeding. Nothing more. Nothing less.
Having said that, I am not denying that North America has gotten a LOT better, but I believe Boom has had 4 game 5 sets with players from North America. Only 4 sets lol. All of which he won. That is f—ing wild. Alvin and Wario are two of the best players in the world. Am I surprised that Boom lost? No. Would I be surprised if Boom lost to a North American? Very.
We have a long way to go still. But we’ll get there. Boom will fall.
K19 | $$$ Jim $$$: LOL who is going to beat Boom at this tournament. Yeah right. The only difference we’ll see is Boom going more Pika.
Janitor: I think that Boom probably realized before those losses that the average player has been improving a lot. Also, that top level players have really been stepping up their tech and combos to make very worthy adversaries. Boom is Boom and he will always be at the top. He’s too good and has been playing too long to fall behind those that are getting closer to his level. I’m not sure what Boom should do to recover from those tournaments but I’m guessing he has something already in the works.
- The Midwest has a number of rising scenes. It is full to the brim with many very talented mid-tier players. However, it completely lacks any truly elite, stand-out competitors. Who do you expect to be the first to bridge that gap and join the elite? What are the steps necessary to make such an impressive leap?
Bacorn: Dogs_Johnson will be a top 10 player in Smash 64 in a couple of years if he keeps going like this. In March, I almost beat him (I’m really bad) and he just won six-straight games against Amida, the second best player in our region (behind Combo Blaze). Our goal at Indy 64 is to grow Smash 64 in the Midwest and that’s what BB2 is all about. I hope people get introduced to players like Vinsanity and Pugs from Ohio, Scoback and Supa from Michigan, Zantetsu from Missouri, LimeSoda and Fishaman P from Wisconsin and come away impressed. I didn’t mention the Chicago guys because everybody knows Combo, battlecow, Knite Phox and Komotonoto, right? There’s a lot of young talent in this area that just needs some work to become great.
KeroKeroppi: I haven’t played with anybody from the Midwest nearly enough to be able to assess who the next “elite” will be. I feel uncomfortable guessing. But I do feel comfortable talking about exactly what that player would need to do to close the gap. And it comes down to wanting it. Practicing, watching videos, studying, they all come after wanting to win. I don’t know the players from the Midwest, but I do know that whoever it is that becomes the best will be the player who wants it the most.
K19 | $$$ Jim $$$: I mean the three people with the quickest upward trajectories are Zantetsu, myself, and Dogs_Johnson. Zanny has the skill, but needs to make sure he’s not nervous during the set. I need to solve the Pika matchup. Dogs needs to play online. Besides that, it’s just a matter of putting in the work, and all of us have been willing to do that.
Janitor: I honestly don’t know that many Midwest players but one player that has stood out to have a lot of talent and promise is the falcon main ComboBlaze from Chicago. Not only does he impress me with his combos but he is also very smart on positioning and move choices when it comes to troubling scenarios where the average player would have definitely dropped the combo. Maybe he won’t be the first one to bridge the gap but he will be on his way to the elite very soon.
- Who will be Top 8 at Boss Battle 2?
KeroKeroppi: Gotta say that I only just looked at the entrants list for the first time after reading this question and there are a lot more players going than I thought there was LMAOOOOOOOO
4. Bark the f—ing shark Sanchez
Next 4 is a total mixup. Could see the following people make Top 8: Combo, Shears (has a hot a mom), CTG, Lorenzo, Jim, Marbles, Hipstur, Janitor, IDK and others
There are a lot of players going to this that are at around the same level. Looking forward to seeing who makes Top 8.
One thing I know for sure is that KeroKeroppi and Stranded will win doubles.
K19 | $$$ Jim $$$: It’s hard to be accurate without seeing the brackets. Doing a quick look through the attendees, here are the names that stood out to me:
Of these, Shears probably isn’t quite as good as the others. Combo is known for not trying, so maybe not him. Bear might be a bit controversial to pick over NaCl, given that NaCl won at SSC, but I believe in Jacob. DOGG actually doesn’t have a chance of Top 8, since he can’t seem to outplace me LOL. Maybe if I get a good bracket into Top 8, it’ll open up the possibility of him making it in there. I probably shouldn’t have left off battlecow, CTG, NaCl, DogsJ, or SaltSizz, but you gotta draw the line somewhere. So blind Top 8:
Janitor: 1. Boom, 2. Kero, 3. Bark, 4. Fireblaster, 5. Marbles, 6. Janitor, 7. ComboBlaze, 8. Dtan
- Now, for the most important question: what would you do with a 50 pound block of salt?
Bacorn: Do what Wookiee did: give it to Combo Blaze.
KeroKeroppi: Sounds like the perfect thing [to] bend Shears’s mom over.
K19 | $$$ Jim $$$: My sponsor only allows me to use salt substitutes. I’m so sorry.
Janitor: I would have airdropped it on Hillary after she conceded.
A Lotta Bit From Dasit
Yep, it’s me, Dasit Mane. Have you ever been so frustrated that you created a local Smash community from scratch?
Let me lay down a little lore…
Bacorn and I got destroyed at SMYM16 last fall. We had been smashing casually since the turn of the century, and didn’t expect to drown in a pool with Bloomington’s finest and Battlecow. Desperate for more games, and unable to get a quick fix, I angrily bought a domain and branded a contrived gaming community.
362 days ago, we got some momentum with a $25 donation to the G3 player fund. That tiny bit of visibility led to a website contact form submission from Wookiee.
SUBJECT: “YO WTF. im flying here late january”
Wookiee was looking for games during an upcoming business trip. Like any sensible person would, I hyped it up.
At about the same time, we discovered a new local weekly smash tournament at Boss Battle Games, a brand-spanking-new arcade. The awesome owners, PheaWolf and Zoex, are partially responsible for the existence of Indiana’s growing 64 community. There would be no Smash 64 Boss Battle without its namesake arcade.
Just after G3 launched the #yearof64, Wookiee came to town, which snowballed into a beautiful and sentimental regional tourney. BB1 rocked our region and solidified the ND64 crew you see today. Enough lore, let’s get to the action.
First question first:
Potassium Honey Jim Money’s thoughts beg for a response. Bacorn has personally jumped on many opportunities to improve BB2 every step of the way. This is not the result of a community failing to support its organizers. (If that was a stab for the camping meme, touché) There are a lot of hard-working people behind the scenes. Bacorn is leading a group of smashers who have little access to top talent, so they have chosen to import it instead. It is not the easiest way to grow a community, but it’s like throwing gas on a fire. BB2 is the pyre that Indiana’s smashers can roast their scrub tendencies upon. Perhaps you ponder why Bacorn has chosen to go in on this event so hard. He will have to put the sticks down for a while next year as he evolves into PopCorn. Let him have his party and raise the bar for our beloved game.
On the matter of couching, I believe all attendees will find the on-site provisions to be accommodating and comfortable. While I have not personally experienced the new couching system that will be used this weekend, I can guarantee that each player will have the same opportunities to kick back and relax. Be sure to thank Boss Battle Games for implementing such a fair couching system.
I am very pleased to see Dogs_Johnson getting due recognition for his xp grind. I’m hoping for some major upsets in bracket, and would not be surprised to see Dogs’s mental game put some bigger dogs on tilt. This is how we do it.
Top 8? I am barely top 10 in Indiana, so I’ll just make some stuff up…
There’s the guy that almost beat the legendary Alvin a few weeks ago. We imported a Spezoli with young Spezoli support included. The BB1 boss slayers, Bark and Combo will be putting in work. There are numerous online warriors and a seasoned beast from majors past. Several of Baltimore’s reps will surely take up residence in bracket. Fireblaster has shield armor, so he’ll be playing at a high level. Madrush, Marbles, and CTG will be putting on for their regions too. We mustn’t ignore the massive turnout of midwest players who are going the distance to level up. You don’t get to watch them play every week, so there is great potential for plot-twists. Dollay hoogadoories!
This weekend will be a beacon of hope in the now post-apocalyptic world. We are honored to have Janitor as the star of BB2. The LAS boss crop has been bountiful this year, and our entire region is eager to bask in the boss’s hitstun. Shoutouts to all of you that will be traveling for this game-changer. As Darkhorse would say, Indy’s single mothers have never been more excited.
We will kick things off on Thursday night with a special Bloomington Bi-Weekly stream featuring Boom, Hipstur (honorary Hoosier), and potentially a carload of BaltiBros. I can’t decide if I’m more stoked for the three nights of chill smash parties surrounding BB2, or the main show itself. “Whatever it is, the party’s underway. So tip up your cup and throw your hands up…”