As the year draws to a close, the 2019 Dragon Ball FighterZ World Tour approaches its last legs, with merely a handful of Events left ahead of the Finals in France. Although this year’s Tour has seen dominating performances from some of the game’s best players, an unexpected face made a major splash in the runnings as the competition comes down to the wire – marking a significant development in spite of the Tour’s general trends.
First Attack 2019 stood as the final Tenkaichi Event on the 2019 DBFZ World Tour. With 200 points on the line and a chance at shaking up the rankings in their favor, players made their way to the sunny Caribbean island of Puerto Rico to bust heads and take names – one of which was Evil Genius’s Chris G.
Known for being a master of many fighting games, Chris G has a colorful history of competing in Dragon Ball FighterZ – and the 2019 season is no different. Having taken 2nd place at Mexico’s Thunderstruck and 7th at the Evolution Championship Series – the first Saga Event on the 2019 Tour – Chris had already made a name for himself in the face of such steamrollers as Shoji “Fenritti” Sho and Goichi “GO1” Kishida, who stands at first place in the global rankings with a whopping 1,350 points under his belt.
That’s no recorder – it’s a “Piccolo!”
As First Attack took place in the West, the Tenkaichi showdown saw the region’s best talent take part in the fray, with nary an Eastern player in sight save for Japan’s Tachikawa Toru. With GO1, Kazunoko, Fenritti, and other Japanese pros sitting out this last Tenkaichi Event, America and Europe’s top talent scrambled for the opportunity to rise in the ranks, including competitors like Thunderstruck champion John “Dekillsage” Coello and Panda Global’s “Nakkiel.”
Standing as one of the final chances for players to make a name for themselves, tensions were soaring in the Tour’s high-stakes Caribbean beatdown – but it wasn’t all blood, sweat, and tears, as a hilarious moment broke this pressure during the intense struggle for last-minute points. In an apparent bid to loosen up ahead of his match, player “Sniks” whipped out a recorder before his fight with the humorously-named “BigButtJackson” on stream, resulting in a wacky song and dance session between the two fighters that had both the crowd and commentators rolling at their antics.
That’s not the only hilarious moment that took place at First Attack, either: known for his bombastic popoffs. America’s “Kuba” threw out a dramatic dab on camera before his opponent arrived on stage, even talking smack to their empty chair. When his rival finally entered the scene, Kuba even faked out a pre-game handshake, adding some much-needed comedy to the Event’s sizzling tension.
Defeating his demon
Much like Thunderstruck, First Attack provided a huge opportunity for Western players to shine, with Sunday’s Top 8 bracket seeing names like America’s Steve “Supernoon” Carbajal, Vineeth “Apologyman” Meka, Chris G, and “SubatomicSabers” in Winners’ side. In a surprising turn of events, Japan’s Tachikawa found himself in the Losers’ bracket, alongside Nakkiel, RMZ, and Dekillsage – who, despite being a crowd favorite, got knocked out of the runnings by Nakkiel in a solid 2-1 set.
In fact, it was Chris G who knocked Tachikawa into the Losers’ bracket during the Winners’ Quarter-Finals – an accomplishment that he claimed was “finally” brought about by both players switching characters (and his own use of Frieza, of course). Having successfully defeated his demon, Chris G was set to begin Top 8 with an extra spring in his step, taking out SubatomicSabers 2-1 to face off with Supernoon in the Winners’ Final.
Much like Dekillsage, Supernoon also made a major showing at Thunderstruck, where he finished in 4th place – but this time, he was determined to take his performance a step further. Although his Winners’ side battle with Chris G ended in a 0-3 loss for the challenger, Supernoon wasn’t out of the runnings just yet, landing in the Losers’ Final to throw down with ApologyMan.
Chris G soars to victory
Taking the set 3-2 over Apologyman, Supernoon met with Chris G in the Grand Final for the one of the season’s most intense runbacks yet. With daylight quickly dwindling and the crowd hoping for a decisive match, 200 points were on the line between two of DBFZ’s famed Western players – and it seemed that Supernoon could very well reset the bracket, shaving Chris down to a single character in their final game.
With each player having two wins on the board, it was do or die for Supernoon – but despite his aggressive use of GT Goku, Chris managed to turn the tide of battle, taking out Supernoon with Yamcha to seal his First Attack championship for good.
Despite making top placements at EVO and Thunderstruck, Chris G’s First Attack victory stands as a comparatively crucial achievement for the multi-game specialist, sending him to 5th place in the rankings ahead of the World Tour’s last Saga Events. With just two tournaments left before the Finals, there’s no telling how the standings will switch up in First Attack’s wake – and as the rankings currently stand, Western competitors aren’t about to give up their chances for glory in the face of GO1’s dominating season, taking up a substantial chunk of the game’s top ranked players.
With First Attack in the books, fans and players alike look forward to the Tour’s upcoming Saga Event in Spain. Will Eastern competitors try to top the charts, once more? Will pros like Nakkiel and Sonic Fox come out in full force to boost their points? Only time will tell, and it’s quickly ticking down to the final battle of the 2019 season!