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Over the weekend, players from all over the world competed at the Get On My Level 2022 event. The event, held at the Sheraton Centre Toronto Hotel, featured tournaments for games such as Super Smash Bros. Melee, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and Guilty Gear: Strive.
Uniting players worldwide
“I’ve been going to tournaments for about 13 years, and this is my first time at an international tournament,” Super Smash Bros. Ultimate competitor Emily “Kiwi” Wajda said. Kiwi also shared how she got introduced to fighting games.
“’I’m actually from the U.S. and I started playing when I could hold a controller,” Kiwi said. “I grew up with my father and my two older brothers, so I was naturally a gamer. They all loved playing Smash 64 and Smash Melee, so they would have me join when I was like five and we played doubles and stuff. We were just casuals, but we played so much that we eventually found the competitive scene when Brawl came up.”
Get On My Level 2022
Chad “Kaard” L’archevêque, who played doubles in Guilty Gear: Strive, shared his esports journey as well. “It’s my first tournament of this caliber,” Kaard told Upcomer.
Kaard also revealed how he took a five-hour drive from Montreal to Toronto in order to compete in Get On My Level 2022. He started playing Super Smash Bros. Brawl about 10 years ago, and similar to Kiwi, he later went into the competitive scene for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Dylan “kingsrock” Ricci also traveled from Montreal to Toronto for the Get On My Level 2022 games. kingsrock noted that although he is from Montreal, he’s never experienced fighting game events at this scale in Canada. He then briefly compared the Canadian scene to the U.S. one.
“It’s really nice to be able to experience something at a level like this in my country,” kingsrock said.
Art in the fighting game community
The fighting game community at large was represented through art as well. In the artist alley section of Get On My Level 2022, Joseph Marchesi featured aesthetic customizations of controllers. He sanded the original cells himself, painted them and ensured that they were durable for players.
“I’ve noticed the entrance for each tournament I’ve been to has been increasing over time,” Marchesi said. “Especially with controllers. The community that we have—that all customizers have—has been growing more in the last three or four years in the scene.”
About seven years ago, Marchesi got into the competitive Smash scene and had a few broken controllers. He also did spray paint art, which led to designs on the GameCube controllers and his Control in Color business.
Amy Chen is an esports journalist and enthusiast who specializes in in-depth interviews and breaking news. A University of Toronto and Humber College graduate, she is passionate about building up the Canadian esports industry. Her current favorite games are Hearthstone and Heroes of the Storm, and she has always had a soft spot for World of Warcraft!