This weekend some of the best players from Australia and abroad have converged on the Australia Ballroom at The Menzies Sydney Hotel to battle it out in the annual OzHadou Nationals competition.
With Australia’s entry to the global fighting game scene still in its infancy and the OzHadou Nationals 14 being the first year since its inception in 2001 to be included in the Capcom Pro tour, it was no wonder nearly 600 competitors found themselves battling it out across a selection of some of the best fighting games ever released. The fight was on for young and old with classic games such as Street Fighter 3: Third Strike, King of Fighters 98, Super Smash Brothers Melee and Super Street Fighter 2 Turbo running alongside the latest editions of Virtua Fighter, Mortal Kombat, Tekken and Street fighter respectively.
In addition to the large scale competitions, there were also competitions for much beloved games such as Guilty Gear Xrd Revelator and Ultimate Marvel VS Capcom with each attracting a small but dedicated fanbase.
Fighters attention was divided among their games of choice but as the day wore on and the number of competitors drew thin the focus turned to the unquestionable main event of the night, the Street Fighter V top 16.
Street Fighter, the game Ozhadou creators had set to promote over a decade ago was now centre stage with eyes turned to see how the Australians would fare both against one another and against their international rivals. With well known international competitors such as K-brad, Gamerbee and the legendary Daigo in attendance, tough competition
for the locals was a certainty but not to be deterred the locals put on an amazing performance.
DS_ZG on left and DS_Falco bottom centre with their managers
In particular was the duo of DS_ZG and DS_Falco both representing team Dark Sided. With both finding success in their initial SFV pools, and DS_Falco’s success in taking out the Guilty Gear competition, things were looking up for team Dark Sided, sadly fate would turn against them when the duo found themselves facing one another in the first round of the top 16. Though the battle between these two brothers was hard fought, Falco and his Chun-Li would eventually prevail over ZG and his Vega sending him down into the loser’s bracket.
With the first loss behind him, and a second chance ahead, ZG attempted to avenge himself and move on to the final 8 in a bout with the vicious Chinese Ken player Jiewa. Though once again the battle was hard fought with each taking rounds against the other Jiewa’s ferocity would eventually triumph over the Australian’s tenacity sadly knocking him out of the competition.
With the foreigners dominating their respective brackets, it was only a matter of time before they faced off against one another and what a bout it was with K-brad facing off against Daigo Umehara in the first round of the top 16 winners bracket. Pressing the advantage, K-brad was able to capture the first match in a close fought battle however not to be discouraged Daigo countered with a crushing perfect second round securing the KO without conceding a single point of damage. Though once again hotly contested, the legendary beast was able to secure the third and deciding match for the veteran claiming the round for himself. Round two belonged solely to Daigo with the beast claiming two matches in quick succession and moving on to the final 8.
Down but not out the affable American fought back, claiming his spot in the top 8 after taking out Australian Zangief and Chun-li player Yunus earning himself both a second chance at the gold and the chance to add to his victory in the Ultimate Marvel VS Capcom tournament earlier in the night.
The action of the final brackets is set to continue tonight.
To view the brackets, find information on future events or to watch the stream of Saturday’s action and the upcoming finals just follow the links below:
Chris Senz is a gaming writer and contributor to PN2.