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Here's a recap of everything that was announced over the EVO Japan 2019 weekend

EVO Japan 2019 ended up making this a particularly busy weekend. The tournament has been wrapped up and champions for each game played at the event have been decided.

Of course, there were also a number of announcements that may catch the interest of fighting game enthusiasts. It appears that developers are using this as an opportunity to build up hype about specific events for their games.

Although Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition was one of the main tournaments with over 1,000 entrants, the competition was actually not part of the Capcom Pro Tour. As a result, Capcom had no announcements to reveal over the weekend.

Likewise, Nintendo also had no presence at EVO Japan this year. Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate were not played. Still, it is worth noting that a 3.0 update for Spring 2019 was announced a few days prior for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Not surprisingly, there were no signs of NetherRealm Studios titles either as Mortal Kombat and Injustice don't tend to be very popular in Japan. Jade's announcement should tide us over in the meantime.

Let's take a moment to recap everything that was announced at EVO Japan 2019 for those that may have missed them.

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Tired of dropping combos? Justin Wong offers two practical ways to sharpen up your fighting game execution

The road to consistent execution can be both arduous and demoralizing, but it's one you'll need to brave if you want to stand a chance in most any fighting game.

The process is something like: you can't perform the combo at all, then you can do it in Training Mode but not against a moving computer, then you can do it against the AI but not in a casual match, then you can do it in a casual match but not in tournament, soon tournament becomes routine but you can't do it on stream, but if you forge through all this, you'll eventually have mastered what you're trying to do.

VP|Justin Wong is no stranger to this concept, and has produced a quick video wherein he offers some advice in the way of building your abilities to consistently hit your combos no matter what the situation.

Justin breaks things down in two distinct ways, the first of which deals directly with getting your fingers and brain on the same wavelength so that you can do your combo at all.

From there the professional fighting game player explains a secondary series of exercises that will get you well on your way through the aforementioned process of execution sharpening.

Give the video a watch below and let us know if you have any tips or tricks (such as the one mentioned from the legendary Gootecks) that have helped you level up your combo consistency.

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Negan's Tekken 7 trailer has him breaking the fourth wall and paying a couple of homages to game director Katsuhiro Harada

Late last night, it was announced that the final two characters of Tekken 7's Season 2 — Julia Chang and Negan — would be releasing on February 28th. Initially, it was only revealed that Julia would be released by this time but Tekken 7 game director Katsuhiro Harada was... "pressured" by Negan to release him at the same time.

Needless to say, Negan's time in the spotlight might be one of the coolest fighting game trailers I've seen in the last few years. Somewhat fitting to Negan's character, he was breaking the fourth wall and paying homages to Harada himself.

As a famous game designer, Harada is known for poking fun at his fans. In particular, you might be familiar with an image of Harada wearing a shirt that says "Don't ask me for s---."

During the trailer, Negan was speaking with Master Raven while using walkie-talkies similar to his conversations with Michonne in AMC's Walking Dead program.

Before stomping on the communication device in a fit of rage, he screamed "don't ask me for s---" while paying no mind to what Master Raven was saying. Clearly this is referencing the meme with Harada.

At the very end of the cinematic, we see Negan walking up to the camera and speaking to an unknown figure.

"You the developers?" asked Negan. "The ones that pull that s--- releasing characters one at a time? You going to put me in the next update, right Harada?"

Indeed, during the middle of Negan's lines, we pan to an in-game version of Harada on his knees. Hilariously, Harada responded with a defeated thumbs up. There obviously wasn't an alternative here.

Be advised of NSFW language in the clips below.

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Fuudo busts out Birdie, but Momochi just couldn't be stopped: EVO Japan highlights for Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition

EVO Japan has come and passed with no new information regarding what comes next for Street Fighter 5 as a game, but it gave us some of the most exciting matches we've seen in months.

Finals day wrapped up earlier this morning where Victrix|Momochi, Liquid|Nemo, YG|Jyobin, Powell, REC|Punk, UYU|OilKing, CYG|Fuudo and Crusher faced off for their first EVO Japan title.

We previously covered the highlights for Guilty Gear Xrd REV 2, Tekken 7 and BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle, so now we're here to do the same for Street Fighter 5's finals.

Momochi would end up sealing the deal against Fuudo in grand finals, but we saw some unique stuff from almost everyone in top 8 with half of the players busting out multiple characters during the event.

We got to see more of Fuudo's Birdie, Momochi's Zeku and even Nemo bust out Kolin, who all managed to pull off some wild punishes in their matches.

Let's get things started where Punk looked to be losing ground in his match against Jyobin, but one shimmy would turn everything around. They'd stay evenly matched until game five where Punk was able to interrupt Necalli's block string with Critical Art unexpectedly to send Jyobin home.

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Voice actor for Ken Masters and Devil May Cry's Dante uninjured but nearly killed in car robbery attempt

So first off, please note that Reuben Langdon is completely uninjured from this incident. He came very close to being killed in a car robbery attempt.

A video was posted on Steve Copeland's Facebook that had the two reviewing the damage done to their vehicle. From what they are able to discern, they were shot at six times during the incident while filming a documentary in Guatemala — a country with one of the highest murder rates in the world.

Notably, the chair that Langdon was sitting in has a bullet hole in it. During the intense situation, Langdon thought he had been shot in the back but ended up being very lucky.

The two also mentioned that a gun might've been pointed directly at Langdon's head at one point. Somehow, they managed to escape the shooting without any injuries.

Reuben Langdon is the voice actor for Dante in Devil May Cry 3: Dante's Awakening, Devil May Cry 4, Devil May Cry 5, and Ken Masters in Street Fighter 4, Street Fighter 5, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He has also done motion capture work for Chris Redfield in Resident Evil Code: Veronica, Resident Evil 5 and Resident Evil 6.

"The message we’re bringing forward is both ancient and from the future" wrote Steve Copeland in a Facebook post. "Now is the time when we come together as one human family to restore our shared home, regenerate and see peace materialize on earth. Some people don’t want this [to] happen, but it’s predestined and will happen regardless of their attempts to keep it from happening."

It seems Langdon had a bit of a sense of humor about the situation as he declares that he was "glad" that he "had [his] bulletproof coffee this morning."

Reuben Langdon is very lucky image #1
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Wild mind games and Arslan_Ash's fantastic losers bracket run: EVO Japan finals highlights for Tekken 7 and BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle

EVO Japan gave us the announcements of when we'll be seeing Julia and Negan join Tekken 7's roster plus showed off four new characters for BlazBlue Cross Tag Battle, but we also saw quite the competition go down.

Both franchises were once again represented on the EVO mainstage where the best players from around Japan and the whole world came together to show who is the strongest and has the best nerves out there.

Pakistan-native VS|Arslan_Ash made an amazing and potentially historic run through the losers bracket in Tekken 7 taking home the championship with Kazumi while Tsurugi|Tomo/Relo beat back to back team scythes to win his title.

We've collected some of the best highlights from both tournaments' top 8 runs.

Mind games, repeated run-up command grabs, perfect rounds, full life comebacks and more can all be found below plus we also detailed potentially the best sets of this weekend in Guilty Gear's finals.

Let's start things off with Arslan_Ash's huge day coming from the losers side using Kazumi and her Tiger landing a perfect on Jimmy J Tran to go up to match point. That wouldn't stop J Tran from staying alive, however.

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Danger Time, insanely fast perfects and mix-ups for days: Summit and Chachacha had the best sets at EVO Japan in Guilty Gear Xrd REV 2

EVO Japan 2019 has now wrapped up its second year, and while Guilty Gear didn't get any new announcements this weekend, the game provided us with perhaps the hypest matches of the entire event.

WG|Summit managed to take 25th place in Guilty Gear Xrd REV 2 at the inaugural event last year, but he came back even stronger with his boy Chipp Zanuff to win the entire thing despite a brick wall standing in his path.

Chachacha on the other hand doesn't appear to travel much for tournaments, but he almost always places high when he does go to a major using his oft forgotten Kum Haeyun.

The pair met in both winners and grand finals giving us incredibly close sets with very different styles each time as their grand finals match would come down to the last game and last round after the bracket reset.

Summit engaged in a high octane offensive based approach with teleporting, dashing and flying all over the screen for mix-ups while Chachacha would try to lock him down in place with Kum's powerful strikes and orb abilities.

We've collected the best highlights from their winners finals and grand finals sets plus we also highly suggest you take a look at their full finals set after the jump because it's quite the spectacle. Let's start things off where Chachacha tried to use Burst Super to stop Summit's comeback in winners finals that ultimately got countered in a way that Tasty Steve says he'd never seen before.

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Time freeze glitch countered by... a rock? Funny sequence causes Blanka to panic against Cody's apparently impenetrable defense in Street Fighter 5

For those that currently aren't in the know, a glitch was recently discovered for Blanka in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition. Or maybe I should refer to him as "Blanka, the Time Lord"?

By canceling the Critical Art into his forward hop using a plink of the punch button and forward and all three kicks, Blanka is able to freeze time and set up an infinite. Capcom is aware of the issue and plans on releasing a patch to address it in the future.

Although this exploit is already being banned at major events like EVO Japan, those of us who seek to increase our ranking in online matches will simply have to deal with this phenomenon. If you're not trying to do it with Blanka then it's an uphill battle for sure.

The River recently posted a humorous sequence that showcased one of his matches against a Grand Master Blanka player who wasn't afraid to utilize the game breaking bug. There may be a counter if you're a Cody player.

With only about a sliver of life remaining for the Blanka user, desperate measures were used. Unfortunately for the player, The River had access to his V-Trigger. This allowed him to toss rocks upwards which formed sort of a shield in front of him.

You can tell that the hit box of the rock was active during the time freeze as Blanka went into his blocking animation while trying to back off. He tried several times, but each rock toss did not drain Cody's V-Gauge.

Eventually, the Blanka user panicked and attempted to slide under the rock and push himself and Cody away from the rock. Things did not work out as planned...

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EVO Japan 2019 results

Update: This story has been updated with final results.

The second installment ever of one of the biggest tournament expansions we've seen is here this weekend, namely the expansion of the EVO brand to Japan, with EVO Japan 2019.

This year, it's taking place in Fukuoka rather than Tokyo, and although entrants aren't as high as they were in last year's monumental premier year, the entrants certainly aren't anything to scoff at.

Over 1000 players are participating in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition, over 500 in Tekken 7, and roughly between 200-300 each for Guilty Gear Xrd REV 2, BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle, Soul Calibur 6 and King of Fighters 14, respectively.

While these 6 games are the main titles at the event, there'll be an absolutely insane amount of side tournaments as well, so make sure you keep in tune with all of the action.

Players participating are a bit too plentiful to list, but just count on the vast majority of Asian top players — and many other top players from other regions of the world — being present and competing.

Streaming is being done at EVO, EVO 2, EVO 3 and EVO 4.

Side events are set to be streamed at KVO Japan 01, KVO Japan 02, KVO Japan 03 and KVO Japan 04.

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Julia Chang and Negan trailers released for Tekken 7, both characters out on February 28th — Tekken World Tour 2019 details also shared

Today, right before the Top 8 was set to take place for Tekken 7 at EVO Japan 2019, we got a little surprise.

Tekken series producer Katsuhiro Harada and game designer Michael Murray stepped up on stage for an announcement.

First, Harada told everyone about the recent announcement that he will be in charge of eSports for all of Bandai Namco's fighting game titles, meaning Tekken 7, Dragon Ball FighterZ and Soul Calibur 6, moving forward.

They then went on to explain that the Tekken World Tour will receive a number of changes this year, saying that the Tekken World Tour will begin this year at The Mixup in Lyon, France on April 20th, and that they will have many new tournaments added to the circuit. It was also said that the points structure will be changed, with more details to come later.

Another point that's been brought up in the past is the prize money pool for the world tour finals, which Harada said has a lot of obstacles to it because of legal restrictions in Japan, but that they're working their best to be able to increase the prize money this year.

They announced that on March 12th, they will be revealing the full details of the Tekken World Tour, and to please look forward to that. Finally, he also noted that this year, the Tekken World Tour Finals will be held somewhere to-be-announced later in Asia (after being held in North America 2017, and Europe 2018).

Of course, this wasn't all, as they then proceeded to show us a Tekken 7 trailer for the next upcoming character, Julia Chang, and then another trailer for Negan, who hijacked it by threatening Harada to release him alongside Julia. Both characters are set to be released on February 28th.

You can find images here, and the trailers below.

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Naoto Kurogane, Teddie, Seth, and Arcana Heart's Heart Aino announced for BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle

Naoto Kurogane, Teddie, Seth, and Heart Aino have been announced as upcoming DLC for BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle. These announcements came following the BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle grand finals at EVO Japan 2019.

Teddie (or Kuma in Japanese) comes from Persona 4: Arena. Meanwhile, Naoto Kurogane originated from BlazBlue: Central Fiction.

As for Seth, he typically appears in the Under Night In-Birth series. Finally, Heart Aino is the first representative from Arcana Heart 3 to join the fight.

Naoto Kurogane's title was stated to be "Bloodedge Kindred." Teddie was declared to be "the Beast in Heat."

Seth is simply the "Assassin." Finally, Heart Aino is referred to as "the Angel Who Fights for Love and Justice."

No information about the release dates of these combatants were released other than "coming soon" and "2019 Spring." Notably, the words "next update" appeared before these reveals so they might become available with the next patch.

Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #1 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #2 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #3 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #4 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #5 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #6 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #7 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #8 Blazblue Cross Tag Battle new characters image #9
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ESAM lists his best 10 moves in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate

Typically in a fighting game, certain characters are armed with moves that are exceptionally strong. Although this can often result in a fighter achieving top tier status, sometimes even a low tier can gain access to a ridiculous attack or two.

PG|ESAM recently released his top 10 best moves in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate list. Everything featured comes from version 2.0.0 of the game.

Being that it's no secret that ESAM is a big believer in Pikachu's capabilities in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. It's no surprise that he listed the character's Quick Attack up special, but it was only at number ten.

Meanwhile, Pichu's forward tilt ranks at number nine on ESAM's list. Other upper tiered combatants have their moves featured like Olimar, Mega Man, and Snake.

Of course, ESAM apparently thinks very highly of Ganondorf's neutral aerial and Incineroar's Revenge (counter). Notably, these two are often regarded as mid tiers or lower on professional lists.

Being that ESAM is a top competitor for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, his knowledge about the game is already great. As a result, he offers detailed and interesting explanations about each referenced move during the video. It's definitely worth checking out.

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Leaked unknown abbreviation for Mortal Kombat 11 may be Geras as early name during development

Not too long ago, Steam updated its trophy database page for Mortal Kombat 11. Some interesting details about the upcoming game may have been leaked as a result.

Longtime Mortal Kombat fans were able to discern a number of names based on abbreviations found in the trophy ID list. Notably, "JAD" was found here shortly before Jade was officially announced.

There were three names that users were unable to identify — "TER," "CET," and "KOL." A bit of excitement was stirred up as "TER" possibly could've been the Terminator.

Still, this seemed somewhat unlikely as guest characters in NetherRealm Studios games were typically reserved as DLC. Some sort of newcomer seemed more likely.

A recent image on Reddit seems to suggest that Geras may have used another name during Mortal Kombat 11's development. This picture shows Sonya — using the "mkday son var2" variation — fighting against Geras — using the "mkday2 ter var2" variation.

These could be unnamed variations that simply reference information from the code of the game by default. There wouldn't necessarily be a need for the programmers to change references of "ter" after renaming the character to Geras as players aren't intended to see these snippets of information.

Geras is "TER"? image #1
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Urien is king, everyone isn't playing Birdie or Blanka now and Kage didn't show up: EVO Japan character usage stats for Street Fighter 5's top 128

EVO Japan is back for its second year with six main stage fighting games, and finals day is set to kick off in just a handful of hours though it's going to take some time to get to the grand finale still.

Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition had over 1,000 entrants, but now we're only down to the top 8 featuring some of the biggest names in the game and a few who will likely be new to viewers at home with Victrix|Momochi, Liquid|Nemo, YG|Jyobin, Powell, REC|Punk, UYU|OilKing, CYG|Fuudo and Crusher waiting to see who will walk away with their first EVO Japan title.

We've recorded the top 128 players and their character choices to break down who were the most popular fighters at the big event and who has yet to make a big impression going into game's fourth year of competition.

Urien has actually been the most popular character at EVO Japan as the only fighter in the top 128 with double digit representation though Akuma and Cammy aren't too far behind.

Season 3 characters and Kage haven't been having much of a hot start to 2019, however, with only six players in total using fighters introduced in 2018. Cody, Sakura and the replacement for Evil Ryu are the only characters not to represented in the upper part of this weekend's brackets.

Blanka still has his game-breaking bug intact currently in Street Fighter 5, but he hasn't seen an explosion in popularity at EVO Japan because using his newly discovered time stopping ability would get players disqualified. You can take a look at the full breakdown of SF5's character usage statistics after the jump.

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Tokido gets thrown 4 times in a row straight to losers' bracket, Birdie shows up to play and more: EVO Japan day two highlights for Street Fighter 5

EVO Japan's second day of competition has now wrapped up, and most of the strongest players from around the world have congregated once again for the second year in the homeland of fighting games.

Street Fighter 5's bracket has whittled down to the final eight competitors out of more than 1,000 that showed up looking to take the grand prize home and the title of EVO champion.

Victrix|Momochi, Liquid|Nemo, YG|Jyobin, Powell, REC|Punk, UYU|OilKing, CYG|Fuudo and Crusher will be facing off early tomorrow morning for those of us in North America though they had to get through some of the stiffest competition to get there.

We've collected some of the best highlights from pools up to top 16 where Tokido would fall early and some of Japan's best that don't typically get to travel showed off why they shouldn't be ignored.

Crusher and Fuudo also showed off why many in the region feel Birdie is the best character in the game at the start of Season 4 with his new V-Trigger 2 buffs.

Let's start things off with where we saw a major upset go down in pools where the new free agent Tokido lost 2-0 to Powell and his Cammy where the Street Fighter legend took four throws in a row to get sent into losers bracket.

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Xian's celebration turned to shock after Akuma powered through Blanka's time freeze glitch with a Critical Art in Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition

If you've been following the competitive Street Fighter 5: Arcade Edition scene, then you probably can't hate on RZR|Xian's personality or play. With that said, most might agree that he's probably the "villain" of this story...

Not too long ago, it was discovered that Blanka could freeze time in a standard game of Street Fighter 5. Clearly this is not an intentional feature as Capcom has announced that they intend to fix it in the future.

Under normal circumstances, Xian is a professional player known for his incredible Ibuki as he pioneered a lot of the things the character does in high level play today. This time, it seems that Xian had an interest in playing Blanka. Or rather, the version of Blanka that allows him to freeze time with a strict input.

During the third and final round of the match, we see the pro getting excited as he dishes unavoidable damage thanks to the time freeze glitch. Eventually, he gets his opponent — an Akuma player — low enough so that he wouldn't be able to survive the chip damage of Blanka's Critical Art.

After inputting the command, Xian is seen already celebrating what he must've assumed was an assured victory. Unfortunately, his cheering was exchanged for a shocked expression when Akuma went into his Critical Art after the character's frozen status had ended.

As a word of warning, there is some NSFW language featured in the clip.

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Source: HiFightTH via Xian's Twitch.

SNK Heroines Tag Team Frenzy coming to PC in the very near future

EVO Japan day two has now wrapped up where we learned that Amy will be joining the cast of Soul Calibur 6 as DLC, but Bandai Namco haven't been the only ones to have announcements at the big event.

SNK revealed that their crossover fan-service filled fighting game SNK Heroines Tag Team Frenzy will be coming to PC via Steam on February 21 for North America and February 22 for Japan.

The developer is running a new trailer on the show floor for the game showing brief clips on the gameplay and story including that SNK Heroines will land on Steam next week though it doesn't detail much beyond that with a "stay tuned for more info" tag at the end.

SNK Heroines Tag Team Frenzy originally launched in September of 2018 on PlayStation 4 and Nintendo Switch and has since added four characters as DLC with Miss X, Jeanne from World Heroes, Skullomania from Fighting EX Layer / Street Fighter EX and Thief Arthur from Million Arthur: Arcana Blood.

One of SNK's star heroines in Mai Shiranui also landed a gig this weekend as a crossover fighter in Dead or Alive 6 along with another unannounced King of Fighters character as DLC in the upcoming game's Season Pass.

No Steam page currently exists for SNK Heroines, so we don't yet know how much the fighting game will cost on its new platform or whether it will include all of its DLC out of the gate. Massive SNK fan Gatoray is at EVO Japan where he recorded the new trailer which you can see for yourself below.

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