EVO tournament organizers confirm that the 2016 edition of the popular fighting game event will feature Pokken Tournament and Street Fighter V as part of its full line-up.
Yesterday, the organizers of the annual EVO fighting games tournament announced the selection of titles set to be featured at the 2016 edition of the event. Despite featuring a couple of mainstays, it's notable that the games set to be contested are largely very recent releases.
The much-hyped Pokken Tournament is one of the games making its EVO debut this year. Pre-release response to the Pokemon-themed fighter has been broadly positive — and given that it launches in North America right in the middle of the tournament weekend, the event should give the spin-off some helpful exposure.
It will certainly be interesting to see how much of the Tekken faithful branch out into the mechanically similar Pokken. Given that Tekken 7 will also be in action at the event, there's an alternative for purists who are put off by the presence of Pokemon in the arena.
However, Pokken won't be the only game representing the franchise, as the likes of Jigglypuff can be a potent choice of character in the Super Smash Bros. series. Both Melee and the recent Wii U instalment of Nintendo's flagship fighting franchise will be a part of the line-up for EVO 2016.
Perhaps the biggest title set to join the fray at this year's event is Street Fighter V. It's clear that Capcom has high hopes for the title, between the extensive beta testing that's been done in recent months, and plans for post-release content that were just announced yesterday.
Surprisingly, Street Fighter IV will not be featured at EVO this year, despite having been a staple of the event since 2008. It's clear that the focus is on the future of the franchise, and both Capcom and the tournament organizers will be hoping that the game's passionate fanbase moves on to the sequel en masse.
Other games on the schedule for EVO 2016 include Marvel vs. Capcom 3, Mortal Kombat X, Guilty Gear Xrd -REVELATOR- and Killer Instinct. It's interesting to note that, with the exception of the ever-popular Marvel vs. Capcom 3, all those titles are set to receive major DLC or an updated release in 2016.
It's clear that the fighting game genre is in a much stronger position than it was a decade ago. Several franchises are flourishing, with strong mainstream response and a potent die-hard community — now, developers and organizers of events like EVO are faced with the task of taking the genre even beyond its arcade heyday.
EVO 2016 will run from July 15-17 at the Las Vegas Convention Center.