Roughly two weeks ago, on March 5th, I got to experience an event that made me feel more at home in the Erie Fighting Game Community than ever before. I got to experience Lakeshore Beatdown 3, a local fighting game tournament. It was one of, if not the, largest events of its type in the area. The main tournament organizer, Jason Baney, has been the driving force behind this tournament. Baney has run all of the weekly events at Game Corps for the past few years as well as the big events such as Lakeshore Beatdown and helping with regional tournament qualifiers.
My own personal involvement began around 9:30 a.m. on Saturday with setup, although setup really began the night before with moving and arranging tables after the weekly Friday Night Magic Standard Tournament ended. Unfortunately I was unable to attend; however, the real work began in the morning. For large tournaments like this there is a need for many setups. A setup consists of a TV or other monitor and a video game console as well as the necessary accessories (game discs, controllers, etc.) In all, there were more than 50 setups, as well as guest setups provided by tournament goers. This aspect is often overlooked. Every setup needs to be assembled, powered, and tested before any of the actual tournament play begins. So for two and a half hours a team consisting of 10-14 people, including myself, worked to assemble each individual station.
Once noon hit people began trickling in, slowly at first, but eventually coming in droves as registration got underway. The venue was absolutely packed with a large group of players coming from as far as Rochester, New York to compete. Online streaming was also a major factor as online viewership reached almost 3,000 active viewers. Overall, this tournament shaped up to be the largest fighting game tournament in Erie and the most well attended so far. Now that Lakeshore Beatdown has ended, regional qualifying league has begun with alternating weekly tournaments. This week is Super Smash Bros. Melee on Saturday, March 26, and next week will be Street Fighter 5.
If you have any interest, please come down to Game Corps in Harborcreek.