EVO 2020 launches digital event starting July


EVO 2020 has now become an official digital event, with five weekends of intense fights. The fighting games tourney will start on July 4 until August 2.

The changes to global conditions pushed EVO 2020 from its annual tournament to an online-only affair. The COVID-19 pandemic halted this year’s events due to the possibility of infection.

Most governments are banning mass gatherings in conjunction with the ongoing pandemic. Many gaming industry events around the globe canceled due to coronavirus.

EVO Online 2020 to feature seven games, four open tourneys

In this year’s EVO, many of the brawlers and champions won’t meet each other. EVO’s announcement trailer reveals their digital event, EVO Online, which will mainstage their physical tourney. During this time, five full weekends of fighting will occur instead of a long physical weekend.

Competitors will fight over this period, together with other events for fans. These events will special exhibitions, four open online tournaments and much more. According to the announcement, there are at least seven games featured, one less than the physical event.

These featured brawls include Tekken 7, Street Fighter 5, Granblue Fantasy Versus,  Under Night In-Birth, Samurai Shodown, and Soulcalibur 6. Super Smash Bros Ultimate did not make the cut and is now out from the list.

As for the open tournament, the four games will be Mortal Kombat 11, Skullgirls 2nd Encore, Them’s Fighting Herds, and Killer Instinct.

Fan response shows concern for possible technical issues in EVO Online

Pushing everything online can be problematic, especially when it comes to fighting games. The idea of cheating easily comes to mind, which is the reason many brawlers and fighting games still happen in physical events.

There’s also an unfair advantage when it comes to potential illegal hardware. Even security and integrity aside for the game, there’s also the issue of technical issues. Dodgy internet, lousy netcode, and many other technical problems can create big obstacles.


For starters, many Japanese fighting games, especially 2D fighters, rollback netcode is the bane of their existence. Samurai Shodown is among the titles which have this specific problem. Granblue Fantasy Versus also has the same issue.

In a tourney where every frame counts, a delay-based netcode can mean trouble. What all this means is that, when the game has bad netcode, the quality of play is not only uncompetitive but also unfair.

EVO 2020 is the best time to see how many fighting games’ online systems can hold up. More gaming events are also moving to digital, including Guerrilla Collective, EA Play, and potentially the Tokyo Game Show.

Images courtesy of Shoryuken/Official Twitter Trailer

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