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The fighting game community will descend upon Las Vegas from August 5-7 for the first time since the COVID-19 pandemic began to compete in a mix of old and new fighting game titles at Evolution Championship Series 2022. But according to the official EVO Twitter page, more players are signed up to compete in Guilty Gear -Strive- than any other title at the self-proclaimed fighting game world championship.

After Arc System Work’s flagship game, Capcom’s Street Fighter V: Championship Edition is in second place while SNK’s The King of Fighters XV rounds out the podium in third. The number of registrants is important for every EVO attendant because the four games with the most players will get to play out their top 8 at the Michelob ULTRA Arena at Mandalay Bay on championship Sunday.

Guilty Gear -Strive- leading all other games is no big surprise, however. It was arguably the biggest fighting game release of 2021 and it has built a massive player the player base since June. Last month, EVO general manager and COMBO BREAKER event director Rick “TheHadou” Thiher tweeted out that Guilty Gear -Strive- “can officially claim ‘largest bracket COMBO BREAKER has ever hosted.'”

Two of the most popular games at the 2019 iteration of EVO are just missing out on the top three, with Tekken 7 sitting in fourth place while DRAGONBALL FighterZ sits in sixth. However, it’s Granblue Fantasy Versus, the game that is between them in fifth place, that is turning heads early.

GBVS was ArcSystemWork’s 2019 title that never had a chance to shine on the EVO stage. With poor online net code, the game flatlined during the pandemic and many presumed it dead. But having fostered a passionate community, GBVS managed to make it into the official EVO 2022 lineup. Now it seems the player base has made sure that decision wasn’t a mistake.

Rounding out the lineup in seventh place is another new EVO title, MELTY BLOOD: TYPE LUMINA. In eighth place is Mortal Kombat 11: Ultimate and Skullgirls: 2nd Encore is in ninth. These rankings can still change, however, as registration doesn’t close until July 9.

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