The Smash World Tour is putting players’ safety first by canceling upcoming events due to COVID-19 (coronavirus) concerns.
The Smash World Tour promised to be the premier tournament series for Nintendo’s popular fighting series. Now, it seems that plans may have to change. The organizers announced due to the coronavirus, there will be no platinum or gold level events in March or April.
For context, the Smash World Tour operates like this: Players compete in tournaments and earn points depending on their placement. These tournaments are ranked either platinum, gold, or silver, from most to least points respectively. The best part of the series is that any tournament could join in; provided it had a singles bracket with over 32 players, any local tournament could opt-in. This was an opportunity to bolster Smash communities, turning smaller events into sites where bigger players could show up for extra points.
Smash World Tour statement regarding COVID-19 pic.twitter.com/poqyS2ccGo
— Smash World Tour (@SmashWorldTour) March 12, 2020
However, with the announcement that all platinum and gold events were canceled — along with the unfortunate news that Pound 2020 would be canceled, as well — it’s unclear how the series will progress. Players won’t have many opportunities to gain points. Although there may be more incentive to attend local tourneys, it’s still not an idea being pushed by tournament organizers. In its statement, Smash World Tour said, “We cannot recommend highly enough to STAY HOME if you are sick, feeling sick, or are close to anyone who is immunocompromised.”
Fortunately, this doesn’t seem to be the end of the Smash World Tour. Events are still planned for later in the year, with opportunities for both Melee and Ultimate players to earn points. Although that may be dependant on the international response to the disease, so plans can still change in the future.
Esports has been one of the worst victims of the coronavirus in the gaming industry so far. Past the cancellation of some Smash events, the Overwatch League has also recently announced cancellations. Recently, we saw Mortal Kombat’s Final Kombat 2020 event move to an all-digital platform.
Once again, I feel the need to pass along the message of safety to our readers. So please, be sure to keep clean, wash your hands, avoid touching your face, mouth, and eyes. If you feel sick, don’t feel obligated to go to work. We all have our part to play in fighting the coronavirus, and the first step is safety.