By Ryan Williams
I’m the tournament organizer of a non-profit fighting game event called Cape Town Showdown. The purpose of this article is to provide a brief overview of the fighting game scene in South Africa, which is what brought about the genesis of the Cape Town Showdown event.
At present, the fighting game genre in South Africa is but a drop in a pond when compared to other competitive genres; i.e. first person shooters, real time strategy games, sports games, etc, to name but a few. All of these genres dominate competitive gaming throughout South Africa.
However, despite its current insignificance, a fighting game community does exist, with many competent fighting game players. This community has a goal, and this goal is simply to develop the fighting game scene to such an extent that it can be taken seriously as a competitive genre in South Africa.
Fighting games are incredibly popular overseas. One need only Google ‘Evolution Fighting Championship’ or ‘Super Battle Opera’ (both large-scale, internationally-recognized fighting game tournaments) to understand how serious players are about these games, and how large the communities are for this particular genre.
With Cape Town Showdown, we are hoping to emulate this level of interest in Cape Town. Other communities in Johannesburg and Durban are doing the same thing, and with sufficient exposure, I am certain that we will accomplish our goals.
Our understanding is that many gamers in South Africa do play fighting games, albeit for casual purposes. It’s always fun to have a few friends over, pop in some Tekken or Street Fighter, and have at it. There’s nothing wrong with that either. Fighting games are fun!
But, what we want to show people is that there is more to fighting games than just a few casual sessions at a friend’s house. Fighting games are all about skill, reflexes, psychology and strategy. There is such an incredible element of depth hidden beneath the surface that if more people were to be aware of it, they wouldn’t hesitate to learn more about it. There is so much more that I could say on the subject that it would take more than just this article to cover all of it. The point that I am ultimately trying to get across is that fighting games have a lot to offer in terms of competitive gaming.
Cape Town Showdown serves as a platform for fighting game players of all skill levels to compete against one another. I feel it should be stressed that we don’t want new players to be discouraged or intimidated by intermediate or advanced players at this event. We want new players to learn from their experiences, and there are many players in our community who are prepared to help newcomers improve. All too often, we find that new or casual fighting game players have a ‘defeatist’ attitude when exposed to a superior level of competition, which is very counter-productive. What these players need to understand is that losing is a very important phase of the learning process, and that they can, and will improve. All that is required is a lot of patience, dedication, research and practice. The same holds true for many other competitive genres.
The very first Cape Town Showdown event was held earlier this year, in July. The next event will be held on the 28th-29th of January, 2012. The venue for this event is LAN Expo, which is located in Somerset West, at the Habitat Centre.
We have 5 featured tournament games:
Tekken 6: Bloodline Rebellion
Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3
Super Street Fighter 4: Arcade Edition
Mortal Kombat 9
The King of Fighters 2002: Unlimited Edition
All tournament games are played on Playstation 3, with the exception of King of Fighters, which will be played on Playstation 2.
We will be adding new titles to the roster for each subsequent event as they are released.
If you are interested in registering for this event, please visit our registration page, we also have a Youtube channel, with footage of the previous event and last but not least, we also have a Facebook page:
If anyone requires any additional information about the event or our community, please feel free to contact me at [email protected]
Last Updated: November 9, 2011