Shine Interview Series: Kaos

by Trent Murray

Kaos at G4 Rivals doublesIn Rivals of Aether, most of the competitive conversation revolves around the United States. This is where all the major tournaments take place and where, most believe, all the best players in the world currently reside. However, thanks to the generosity of the Rivals community, two players will be traveling across the world to challenge that claim. Shine 2017 offered a Rivals of Aether compendium with ambitious goals to fly out the best player in Europe, and the best in Australia. Surpassing all expectations, the Rivals community stepped up in a big way, funding every compendium goal, including our two world warriors.

Today, we’re talking to Europe’s premier player, Kaos. At Genesis 4, Kaos blew through the home crowd, taking 5th place at his first-ever U.S. tournament. He shares the lessons he learned from that event, his unique history with competitive gaming, and how he plans to dethrone the best player in the world.

Trent: Tell us a little about your competitive history before Rivals?

Kaos: I played a little bit of Brawl back when it came out in 2009, until my last tournament in 2011. I remember drowning in pools at my first local. I quickly improved after that and was one of the best, if not the best, player in EU for some time. I was mostly known for my strong fundamentals and that carried over in Rivals.

I slowly got better at League of Legends and moved on to playing competitively in season 1 & 2. I’m relatively unknown to the general public but my team and I always managed to reach the #1 spot in the 5v5 ladder and I was consistently somewhere in the top 10 in solo Q.

We joined the organization Na’Vi at the time, but the scene was getting more and more competitive, every serious team started training every day in gaming houses, and we were losing to teams that we used to beat consistently. At that point we had to make a choice between going pro and leaving the competitive scene. I wanted to focus on my career and I wasn’t interested in playing LoL casually so I simply quit.

There are a few others games that I played “seriously” at least for some time but these are the two main ones.

Kaos defeating Mr. R at TSL4

Trent: What made you want to be a serious competitor in Rivals?

Kaos: Just like any other game I played competitively, it’s not something that I planned. I just really like the game, and I enjoy getting better at it, so I just play and do what I can to improve.

Trent: You mention that you competed a lot in Brawl, did you have any Melee experience before moving to Rivals? What aspects of Rivals specifically drew you in rather than another platform fighter?

Kaos: The only Melee experience I have is participating in tournaments at events with both Brawl & Melee, so not that much.

I tried [Smash 4] when it came out, I even thought about playing it seriously, but in the end I didn’t like the game and didn’t feel like grinding it at all so I quickly quit.

Rivals really spoils you with how fluid and natural the controls feel compared to other smash titles. It makes the game a little easier, but after you get used to horizontal wavedashes or platform drops out of dash for example, anything else feels stiff in comparison. I also like how every character has unique mechanics and can influence the stage in some way.

Trent: What other hobbies do you have outside the game?

Kaos: I mostly play games, program stuff and watch series. Hyped for the 7th season of Game of Thrones! I also enjoy traveling and seeing new places. It’s crazy how thanks to Brawl, LoL, and now RoA, I ended up having so many opportunities to travel around the world to play games.

Trent: Is there anything aside from the tournament you’re excited about during your visit to the US?

Kaos: I had to adapt to the prices of the plane tickets but I’ll have one day to visit Boston/Cambridge so that’s already quite nice. Being kind of a science/tech nerd I mostly just want to see the MIT. I’m also really happy that I’ll get to meet the #1 player in Australia, Gabe. I honestly thought this would never happen.


Gabe being #1

Trent: What were your biggest takeaways from the event at Genesis 4?

Kaos: My biggest takeaway is definitely that I really needed to train for specific match-ups if I wanted to stand a chance against certain NA players. The scene is much smaller in EU so my method so far has been to play every character, but that has proven not to be enough because I mostly just scratch the surface of each character’s specifics and just win with good fundamentals. I have to study them much more extensively if I want to compensate for the lack of an available top player with some characters.

Also, because the pool of top players is considerably bigger in NA, you mustn’t lower your guard against anyone. Even players who aren’t in the top 15 can take games off the very best ones, so everyone is a potential threat.

Trent: Which players are you most excited to face in bracket?

Kaos: FullStream obviously, as he has proven to be the #1 player to beat. [He] and I actually played some friendlies at G4. Him being the best player and me not having any experience against Wrastor, let’s say it didn’t go too well for me. I might have taken games off him if we met in bracket but it was very unlikely that I would win a set.

However I really improved since G4 and I labbed Wrastor a lot, especially his combo options, so I have a much better feeling of what to expect against him. I definitely have more chances than at G4, I guess the biggest factor will be how much he has improved as well.

If I end up winning it would definitely add more legitimacy to the EU scene, and I hope it would motivate more people here to grow their own local scene.

Trent: Which players are you hoping to avoid in bracket?

Kaos: Since [Grand Finals] will obviously be Gabe vs me I just want us to be on opposite sides of the bracket.

Trent: What does it mean to you that your compendium goal got funded?

Kaos: Before it started, I really hoped that Gabe would get funded, that alone would have been crazy, even though to be honest I was a little pessimistic. So obviously, I didn’t even imagine that I had a single chance. I couldn’t be more wrong, the compendium was absolutely insane. In just a few days he got funded, then Lord Bagel got funded in a few days too, and then same thing for me! Huge wtf moment. I find it really cool that a community sponsors its players through the equivalent of crowdfunding. I am extremely grateful to the community for giving me this chance, and I’ll do my best to win.

Group Photo after Rivals of Aether grand finals

Trent: What are your expectations for your performance at the tournament at Shine?

Kaos: I think I’m expected to be somewhere in the top 5, but that won’t hold me back. I aim for the gold, and I won’t be satisfied with anything else. And LBO and I will win doubles. I was always better in doubles than in singles in Smash games in general and I think that still holds true in Rivals.

Trent: Tell us a little bit about the EU scene. Are there any other players that you think would compete with the top of the US if they got to travel?

Kaos: Because the community is small and scattered, the scene is mostly online, with generally two tournaments a week. We have gathered players in the Paris region a few times but it’s not something that we consistently do yet. In EU we have a strong core of [about] 10 players, with a clear top 3 who pretty much only loses to other players in the top 3.

After playing in NA I’m confident that Transco & Neylax are somewhere in the global top 15, just not sure where exactly. They would definitely be scary opponents for top NA players.

Trent: Is there anything else you’d like to say to the community?

Kaos: A huge thank you to everyone who bought stuff just to support the compendium, and to the RoA dev team who didn’t even get any money from it. Best business model?!

I know my EU brothers won’t go to bed at a reasonable hour so they can watch the stream so shoutouts to them in advance.

One last thing. Mark my words, I’m going to win Shine.

A huge thank you to Kaos for sharing his time with us. Give him a follow @KaosSmash and be sure to cheer him on at Shine 2017, August 25th-27th. Be sure to keep your eyes right here on rivalsofaether.com for more interviews leading up to Shine 2017.

Editor’s note: Tune into Rivals at Shine on twitch.tv/BigBlueGG on August 26th at 6PM EDT / 4PM CDT / 3PM PDT. We’ll be streaming all the way from pools until the conclusion of the tournament that night.

If you’re interesting in playing in any of the free, online Rivals events Kaos mentioned check out smash.gg/RCS-2 and discord.gg/RoA.

Community Roundup: Ranno Edition

Last weekend we unveiled Ranno – The Poisonous Pacifist, and the community went crazy for him. We got so much Ranno fan art (in so many different styles) that we’ve got enough frogs for a Ranno-only roundup! With that in mind, here are some of our favorite Ranno pieces.

ART

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The whole team (especially the concept artist behind Ranno) was overwhelmed with all of these awesome takes on the character. We loved seeing these and all the excitement around the reveal. We can’t wait for the next one!

Rivals of Aether Leaves Game Preview on August 23rd

If you missed our announcement at Super Smash Con, we now have an official launch date for Rivals on Xbox One and it’s right around the corner. We’re pleased to share that the full version of Rivals will be available in less than one week on August 23rd.

xbox-one-launch-preview

This update comes packed with content, features and polish to bring our Xbox players all the way past version 1.0 in one fell swoop. The full launch includes:

  • Story Mode
  • Abyss Mode
  • New Single Player and Co-op Leaderboards
  • Currency / Unlockables (New skins, custom color slots, and more)
  • New Music
  • A New Ranked Season
  • Achievements
  • Player Icons

Our first new character DLC, Ori and Sein, along with The Spirit Tree stage will also become available on August 23rd. We worked with Microsoft and Moon Studios to bring these guest characters into the world of Rivals and you can read all about them in our post on Ori and Sein.

Ori_Branded584x800_2

Thanks to everyone who supported us by picking up Rivals early in Game Preview. We’re excited to launch and hope it was worth the wait!

Super Smash Con 2017 Wrap Up

Super Smash Con 2017 is officially all wrapped up! Smash Con has a special place in our hearts as it’s one of the earliest conventions we ever brought Rivals to. This being our 3rd year in a row meant a lot when we were able to come back in a big way and see so many returning fans. This tournament was also our largest live event yet with a 160 player bracket for singles and 42 teams participating in doubles, in addition to a character reveal panel. If you missed the action last weekend this recap should bring you up to speed.

Character Reveal Panel

We revealed our newest Rival – Ranno, the poisonous pacifist on Friday morning.

Along with this reveal trailer we also did a panel that delved deeper into some of Ranno’s lore, moveset, and design with a Q&A at the end. This was broadcast by VGBootCamp and you can watch the entire panel on their channel.

Xbox One and Ori DLC Launch Date

We’ve finished our Xbox One version of Rivals and Xbox players will be able to get the full version of the game on August 23rd. Players who’ve already purchased the game on Game Preview will be automatically updated to the launch version of the game for free.

xbox-ori-release-date-3

Rivals Singles Tournament

This year’s singles event was the largest Rivals of Aether tournament to date, with a 160 player bracket that we capped off with our top 8 Saturday morning on VGBootCamp. Congratulations to Edax | FullStream for his first place finish and dominating performance that netted him the lion’s share of the $2,000 pot bonus. This was the second live event we’ve seen FullStream mix it up with characters other than Wrastor, with him playing Zetterburn for the majority of the tournament and even a suprise Etalus pick to reverse 3-0 Fable | MSB.

You can watch the VoDs from the event on VGBootCamp’s VoD channel.

If you’re interested in just the highlights, youtuber Jarek4 Gaming also put together a great highlight reel here from the event:

Final Standings:

Standing Player Character
1st Edax | FullStream
2nd T2 | CakeAssault
3rd Fable | MSB
4th Ceztellz
5th VexX | DolphinBrick
5th Edax | TurtleBox
7th Penguin
7th Skittles
Full Standings >

Rivals Doubles Tournament

This doubles tournament had a bit of a twist as both Ori and Sein along with Ranno were legal. Many teams tried out the new characters to varying success and at the end of it all Edax | FullStream and Edax | Turtlebox were crowned the champions. Congratulations to the double Edax Pro squad for securing first place and maintaining their undefeated record at RCS events in doubles.

Standing Player Character
1st Edax | FullStream / Edax | TurtleBox
2nd Sparx21 / VexX | DolphinBrick
3rd Dunk / Jesier
4th Penguin / Ceztellz
Full Standings >

Event Photos

Edax | Zam took some great photos at the event and kindly uploaded an album for everyone to enjoy. Browse through for a look into Super Smash Con 2017, the Rivals community, or to find some pictures of yourself if you attended.

View the Full Album >

Later this week

The official Rivals twitch channel will be doing some match analysis from the top 32 this week since those games weren’t able to be streamed at the event. If you were a player in the top 32 who would be interested in having your game looked at, leave a comment below!

Renzo was also hard at work during the event making sure we got all of the replays from the top 32. He’s planning to upload them to his YouTube channel so people can see some of the great matches from pools.

Upcoming events

Thanks again to everyone in the community (as well as the new players) who came out for Super Smash Con. The event was a blast and we can’t wait for the next one. We’ll see you all at Shine on August 25th! We’ll also be at these events later this year:

Rivals Summer Events Date
Shine 8/25 – 8/27
PAX West 9/1 – 9/4
Balcy’s Palace 9/8 – 9/10
Heat Wave 9/23
GameTyrant Expo 2017 9/29 – 10/1

Shine Interview Series: Gabe

by Trent Murray

In Rivals of Aether, most of the competitive conversation revolves around the United States. This is where all the major tournaments take place and where, most believe, all the best players in the world currently reside. However, thanks to the generosity of the Rivals community, two players will be traveling across the world to challenge that claim. Shine 2017 offered a compendium with ambitious goals to fly out the best player in Europe, and the best in Australia. Surpassing all expectations, the Rivals community stepped up in a big way, funding every compendium goal, including our two world warriors.

Gabe Couch Warriors Top 3-croppedIn the first of our Shine 2017 interview series, we talked to the Australian legend himself, Gabe. Coming from so far away, Gabe’s compendium goal was significantly higher than his fellow competitors. Being fully funded, it’s clear that the community has high expectations for Australia’s best player. Currently ranked #1 in AU, Gabe shares his competitive history, some insight on the Australian community, and why he’s excited to make his way to the United States.

Trent: Tell us a little about your competitive history before Rivals.

Gabe: Unsurprisingly, the first game I ever tried to get good at was Smash Bros (On the N64). I used to play the hell out of that game and I even thought I was pretty good, beating my older brother and his friends 3v1, winning all the little tournaments they hosted for their friends. “Thought” was the key word there, though. Sometime in high school (year 11) one of my mates mentioned he knew a dude named Yitzi who lives nearby that’s pretty good, and in my hubris I went to Yitzi’s house to trash him in some smash. Needless to say I got consistently 5-stocked and figured out just how bad I was.

A little later I moved on to melee and then found out there was a competitive scene [from the documentary] where I started to go to tournaments and get better (I even invited Yitzi to a tournament just so I could knock him out). Eventually I became one of the better players in my region playing [Game and Watch] in melee and made it to the national PR for Project: M and started running/helping run tournaments for my local scene. This is pretty much where RoA came in.

Trent: What made you want to be a serious competitor in Rivals?

Gabe: When I first saw alpha footage of RoA I got pretty hyped, since I’ve always liked pixel art stuff and SNES games. My excitement was justified once I finally got my hands on the game in early access and I immediately started to foster a local scene for it. My goal was never really (and still isn’t) to be a serious competitor in RoA, I was more interested in having an outlet to play via growing a scene for the game.

I just played a lot, since the game is fun. And since I played so much I eventually got good. Since I’m also the main TO for my state, I also attended every tournament, so I got more tournament experience than most other players. Me also being a beta tester got me to analyse frame data and how different characters interact a lot deeper than most players. So while I never really had a drive to be the best in Aus it just sorta happened with how involved I was with the competitive scene and the making of the game. But hey, I guess making some bus money from winning tournaments is nice as well.

Trent: What other hobbies do you have outside the game?

Gabe: Most of my time nowadays is taken up by doing my PhD (In population genetics). Sitting in my office at uni writing (As I’m doing right now) is my main activity outside of video games. Apart from Uni and RoA/Smash I also enjoy ceramic art, messing around with electronics, going to independent art galleries, heading to the pub with some mates or just watching some dank movies.

Trent: Tell us a little bit about your local scene. Are there any other players that you think would compete with the top of the U.S. if they got to travel?

Gabe: The Australian scene is pretty special compared to the rest of the world. I think we’re the only big scene that mainly focuses on offline play, as opposed to the U.S. and E.U. which are all online. We have consistent offline events, which is pretty great. The game is just so different offline and once you try it you never want to touch netplay again.

As a consequence of an offline scene, we’re all pretty close and friendly. It’s not rare for the best players in the country to invite newer and intermediate players over for some games which has led to even our newest players having a pretty solid understanding of the game, which is great. As for players that would compete with the best over in the states, I’d say Dave and SNC would probably do better than I if they went over. For one, both of those guys would take it a lot more seriously than I am but they’re also extremely good players. From what I can tell, SNC is the best Kragg player in the world and he’s been on a big grind recently. Dave also played the game like nobody I’ve seen in the states (thankfully), he’s more than happy to just sit there doing nothing while you screw up an input, with [really passive play].I’d also love to see Jet play over there, because he’s my boy.

AUS-local

Trent: Is there anything aside from the tournament you’re excited about during your visit to the US?

Gabe: While I’m excited to get to compete in these tournaments, I’m even more excited to meet the community. My main goal in heading to the US is to finally meet all the people I’ve interacted with online via RoA. I’m most keen to meet MSB, Handbutt, Etalus, Youngblood, Kaos, the food server guys, Dan the man himself and Etalus again.

One place I’ve always wanted to visit in the USA is New York City (which has been described to me as The Sydney expansion pack) and thankfully my man Toko (an EC RoA player and certified top bloke) offered to house me in Queens for the entire month, so that worked out perfectly. I think MSB is going to stay with us for a while so we should be able to get in some good practice in between tournaments. Since I’ve got housing, I’ll also be able to go to Super Smash Con, and hopefully meet even more cool people there.

The other thing I plan to do is a little networking at a New Jersey university, attempt to find some not-trash coffee in New York, and meet Qerb (The best melee GnW player in the world). So I’ve got plenty to keep me busy.

Trent: Which players are you most excited to face in bracket?

Gabe: It’d be nice to play Fullstream, just because he’s considered the best at the moment. Being able to knock him out would lend some pretty solid legitimacy to the AU RoA scene and I just love the Wrastor vs Zetterburn match up. if I manage to knock [him] out, I’d just laugh. It would be the greatest kek the RoA community has ever seen.

Trent: Which players are you hoping to avoid in bracket?

Gabe: The only players I don’t want to play in bracket are MSB and Toko. Not because I think they’ll be able to beat me, but because I’m going to be spending so much time with them over my stay that I’d prefer to play some other people once I’m at the events. Apart from that, I’m fine with whoever I get to play. I’ve never been to a US RoA tournament, so everyone is a new and fun match up.

Trent: What does it mean to you that your compendium goal got funded?

gabe-compendiumGabe: It’s nice to know that people care about the Australian scene enough to fly me out, so it does lend a lot of legitimacy to our scene. More than that though, I see this as some sort of affirmation that I’ve made a significant and positive impact on the global RoA scene and it’s really encouraged me to keep on doing whatever I can to help the scene grow (both in Australia and internationally).

Trent: What are your expectations for your performance at the tournament at Shine 2017?

Gabe: I honestly have no idea. I’ve heard predictions from top players saying I’ll place anywhere from 15th to 2nd, so it’s a pretty wide range to go off. Since I’ll be in the states for the whole month I’ll have time to learn some new stuff, practise with MSB and figure out a realistic goal for Shine. No matter how I do though, I’ll be pretty happy, since I’m there for the people not the prize money.

Trent: Is there anything else you’d like to say to the community?

Gabe: I’m sure I’ll get the chance to say plenty to them all IRL , so for now I’d just like to say: Thanks for flying me out and I’ll see you soon.

Thanks again to Gabe for his time and wonderful insight! Follow him at @GubbaFlubba and watch him compete at Super Smash Con next weekend, as well as at Shine 2017 on August 25th-27th. Be sure to keep your eyes right here on rivalsofaether.com for more interviews leading up to Shine 2017.

Editor’s note: Shine registration closes on 8/6 so there’s still time to sign up! If you want to come play Rivals with Gabe, the devs, and everyone else coming out for this gaming experience make sure you sign up on smash.gg.

RCS Compendium and Arcade Maypul

Super Smash Con is right around the corner and we’ve just broken triple digits for registrants! With SSC and so many other exciting events on the Rivals Championship Series circuit this year, we want to make sure all of them get the love and support they need. To help meet this goal we’ve been working on something special with smash.gg – a standing compendium for the RCS.

Rivals Championship Series Compendium - Get Rivals of Aether merch and support the community at the same time! Everything raised here goes directly to RCS events or back to the players attending in the form of prize money, travel support, and more.

This special shop will be available for the entirety of season 2, and contain Rivals skins and swag that you can’t get anywhere else. We’ll be rotating in goals as events come up (like Super Smash Con) as well as keeping our finals goal that can always be donated to. The best part is that 100% of the funds raised here go back to supporting our players and community.

To kick off the opening of the RCS compendium we’re including a brand new skin in the shop – Arcade Maypul! Pick her up on smash.gg to support Super Smash Con and get some sweet arcade effects for Maypul and Lily.

Arcade Maypul Rivals of Aether skin

We love doing events and giving back, so if you want to keep seeing tournaments like these make sure you show up to represent (or at least let us know you’re a fan online)! Here’s our current list through the summer. Hope to see you there!

Rivals Summer Events Date
Low Tier City 5 8/5 – 8/6
Super Smash Con 8/10 – 8/13
Shine 8/25 – 8/27
Balcy’s Palace 9/8 – 9/10
Heat Wave 9/23

Rivals Rep Icon Contest Wrap Up

During our second ranked season this summer we teamed up with some amazing organizations to run our Rivals Rep contest. In case you missed it, the event involved players repping their favorite esports teams for three weeks by equipping team icons in ranked matches. Each win a player earned while wearing an icon counted as a point for that team.

Though it started out fairly close between Burrito Esports, Edax Pro, Fable Esports, Panda Global, Tempo Storm, and VexX Gaming, Burrito Esports ended up clinching the win after nearly 20,000 games logged by our excited community.

Burrito-Esportslogo-square

This event wasn’t just for glory though. The winning organization also got the opportunity to add a skin to Rivals that was themed around their team. Since Burrito Esports has a pretty clear-cut aesthetic, we won’t spend too much time explaining our design process behind this skin. Without further ado we present Burrito Kragg:

Burrito Kragg

Burrito Kragg is available now in the RCS compendium. Just like this friendly competition was all about people banding together to support a common goal, picking up this skin continues that theme. Each Burrito Kragg purchase gives a 50/50 split to Burrito Esports and RCS events. This is a win/win that lets players support a great organization and the Rivals scene at the same time.

We’d like to thank all the teams who participated and encourage people to follow them and their exploits in the games you love. Gaming and esports is full of passion that extends throughout the whole scene, from the players to the CEOs, and this is one way we hope to bring people together to support it.

We heard a lot of great things about this event from our players and can’t wait to do another. If you’re an org interested in participating in our next icon contest we’d love to hear from you at [email protected]

Congratulations again to Burrito Esports and all the players who repped them on the ladder. We’re expecting great things from their top tier pickup LBO at the smash super major Shine later this month!

RCS Finals Return to Genesis

Group Photo after GrandsLast year we began the Rivals Championship Series (RCS) and brought a developer supported circuit to our dedicated community. As the series grew, we needed a special finals event to cap it off, so we ended the first season at Genesis 4.

We were thrilled with the reception and Rivals players were too. People came from all over the world for the competition and camaraderie. With a 120 person bracket and a prize pool of over $11,000, players took away some amazing stories and friendships from the event.

Now the second RCS season is underway and already blowing last year’s numbers out of the water. We’re excited to announce that the finals will once again take place at Genesis – this time at Genesis 5 in Oakland, CA! Rivals registration was just announced yesterday with the main lineup of games and is now available here: https://smash.gg/G5

We’ll have players from all over the world attending our season 2 finals, including our newest RCS region in Australia. Make sure you sign up to be a part of this amazing event celebrating our community. The first 500 people to register for Genesis 5 also get $10 off and a free shirt so make sure you get in early.

Community Roundup #12

Welcome back for the latest community roundup, where we highlight our favorite fan-made Rivals music, art, general community happenings, and more.

ART

We’re kicking off this week with some lovely art from Twitter:

We’ve seen plenty of pizza Absa on the discord, but how about this pizza delivery Absa by Alva.

MUSIC

Here’s another awesome metal take on a piece from the Rivals soundtrack by TsrifElddimTsal.

GAMES

VexX | AZCards has just put out a combo video showcasing some dunk-centric Kragg play. Hopefully this is the first of many to come!

VhansRoA has been posting around looking for clips for a community combo video lately and here’s the result. This turned out awesome and we can’t wait to see the next one. If you want to get your clip in one of his montages, make sure you check out how to submit yours in the YouTube video description.

Here’s Windows laying the hurt on someone with a triple scraw. This keyboard Wrastor has been crushing the ranked ladder in season 2, and is currently first place with a margin of over 200 points. If you’re interested in seeing some of his games he also has a great stream on twitch.

OTHER GOOD STUFF

Sawtooth made this sweet visual power rankings for the Colorado Rivals scene.

Here’s Fraggle275’s cool custom box for Rivals. Some people go hard to get that perfect button layout!

Sparx21 was reminded of something else when he passed this truck on the highway…

That’s it for this community roundup! Let us know in the comments if we missed any of your favorites, and make sure to give the creators some love.

AU Top 20: #5 – 1

By: Callisto, SNC, and Gabe.

This is part of an article series highlighting the Australian Rivals of Aether community, focusing on the top 20 AU players. Get to know more about our newest RCS region as we release their write-ups over the next three days.

If you’re an AU player make sure you show the online scene your support by signing up for online monthlies on smash.gg. Get to know the community and play for points and prizes, including a travel voucher to our finals event in North America for the top ranked AU player.

Articles in the Series:

Rank Results Rivals
05 local-icon 1st expand2-icon 3rd
Summary

What would a national PR be without an Etalus main? There’s no better bear around than the second hand Vsauce himself. Coming into the spotlight at the start of the year with more top finishes, Callisto’s bear has slid it’s way into 5th with no signs of wavedashing back.

5th is a fitting place for Callisto, considering he has been a consistent top 5 at every event he’s entered this year, both local and interstate. Placing 3rd at Expand Gong, 5th at BAM9 and 5th at the May RCS, all these numbers add up to one excellent Etalus player.

Rank Results Rivals
04 local-icon 2nd BAM9-icon 2nd
Summary

While Neeson started off strong in the early days of the Australian scene, it wasn’t until a pilgrimage to Nepal to train with the buddhist monks (seen here with his mentor) that Neeson truly ascended to become one of Australia’s best players. While Neeson’s hyper aggressive play style (and less than humble nature) may seem contradictory to his buddhist teachings, it does get results.

Now onto his fourth main in his time as a player, Neeson’s careful study of his opponents has lead to him being an innovator in the scene for multiple characters (with many combos being locally referred to as “The Neeson”). Having a solid showing locally and online this past season, Neeson cashed in his karma and placed 2nd at BAM 9.

Rank Results Rivals
03 local-icon 2nd expand2-icon 4th
Summary

Possibly the most patient player in the scene, Dave (MD) uses his innate ability to read and understand players to expose their flaws. Maining Maypul at launch, the skills he developed there transitioned perfectly into his zone-heavy Orcane. He walls out both unfamiliar and skilled players alike to capitalize on an otherwise tricky punish game.

An expert at controlling the pace of a match, it is the very rare player that can match him in neutral, with only few players proving themselves capable of taking a set off this seasoned veteran. Dave’s losses are few and far between which is why he has earned his place in the top 3.

Rank Results Rivals
02 local-icon 1st BAM9-icon 3rd
Summary

Head TO and contributor to the Rivals of Aether Australia YouTube channel, SNC (standing for Super Nintendo Chalmers) has made as much of an impact on the Aussie community as any. A Zetterburn main initially, SNC showed early signs of potential despite having no previous competitive Smash experience. He caused some minor upsets in his first few months of play and quickly made a name for himself after placing second at his first local.

After 5 months of Zetter practice never granting him the 1st place finish that he sought, he decided it was time to reevaluate his choice of main. Taking inspiration from Kragg players both locally (Dreadtech) and abroad (MSB), his swap to Kragg in early 2016 was the change he desperately needed. SNC went on to win his first tournament just two weeks later, and although his results for the remainder of the year varied, his understanding of the game grew through both study and play. Looking at 2017 his improvement is unquestionable. SNC has dominating results at his local scene and loses to very few online – placing 2nd at Expand Gong 2 and 3rd at BAM 9.

Rank Results Rivals
01 local-icon 1st BAM9-icon 1st
Summary

The undisputed champion of the Australian Rivals scene since Project Melbourne 2, Gabe has effortlessly dominated almost every offline event that he’s attended. His losses are scarce against the best of the best, even playing with secondary or tertiary characters against other members of the top 20 with great success.

His knowledge and understanding of this game is unmatched, earning him a spot in the Rivals beta team and allowing him to find obscure (and often useless) advanced techniques. There are a few excellent players that can challenge Gabe in the Australian scene but time and time again Gabe has shown that his skills are as unrivaled as his fashion sense.