Another weekend has passed as the Road to Manila Cup pushes on. We had three games on stage this time around: Guilty Gear Xrd Rev 2, King of Fighters XIV and Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3. Winners for the tournaments get free entrance to Manila Cup 2017 this September for their respective game.
King of Fighters XIV
For the flagship SNK fighter, grand finals came down to Peter “Papable Peter” Chua Jr. and Zaldy "BigBallz" Cierva. Coming off fresh from his win in REV Major the previous week, Peter looked to continue the hot streak and secure himself a spot this September. Throughout the tournament, Peter made good use of King, making good use of her fireball game to constantly annoy his opposition and bait out mistakes for big damage. In grand finals, King proved to be the problem character for BigBallz initially as he sought for a way to weave in and get in Peter’s face.
Despite facing off against some tough zoning pressure, BigBallz showed no signs of being intimidated. He took the first two, outlasting Peter in the Iori mirror match for both games. As game three started, BigBallz was finally able to crack Peter’s keepaway game and took down King without much trouble. However, it was Peter’s Mature who managed to shine this time around, taking out two of BigBallz’s characters. A bracket reset imminent, Peter manages clip Bigballz with a solid hit after a failed conversion to put one up on the board.
In game four, again it was Peter’s Mature doing work, this time taking out BigBallz’s entire team to even things out 2 – 2. The blonde assassin would continue to carry Peter in the final game as he clutched it out over BigBallz.
Guilty Gear Xrd REV2
Guilty Gear grand finals was a showdown between ninjutsu and dandyism; speed versus power as AJ “Yat” Ty and his Answer took on Allen Tan with his Slayer.AJ is a newcomer to the scene. Originally a Smash Bros. Melee player, he just started playing Guilty Gear back in February this year. Since then, he’s made remarkable progress, able to go toe to toe with some of the best players in the country.
Answer is one of the new characters introduced in the game’s most recent update. Referred to as the Business Ninja, Answer relies much on mixing up his opponent with confusing setups, which Yat uses with great effectiveness.
His opponent Allen is a veteran player of various games. Unlike Answer, Allen’s character Slayer is a staple of the Guilty Gear franchise. The character relies on his unique teleport dash to confuse opponents so that he can land a big hit to do massive damage.
Their set started heavily in favor of Yat, using Answer’s various tools and taking advantage of Allen’s unfamiliarity with the character match up. Yat got the quick two game lead. Allen however managed to rally back after the first two games. He clutched out a comeback in game three with a high risk gamble, and then again in game four to tie the set 2 – 2. In the final moments of the fifth game, Allen caught Yat with a dash punch as he was trying to jump, winning the game and resetting the bracket.
Their second set showcased constant adjustment from both players. Grueling scrambles were had with games coming down to the last round every time. With the score two to one in Yatz’s favor, Allen makes a pixel life comeback in round one of game four. Yatz remained unfazed, answers back to take round two. Now in the last round and both players low on health, Yatz manages to land a clean hit leading to a combo and ending the round with a low kick, catching Allen unawares.
Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3
The last game of the night, Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 grand finals came down to Tom and once again, Northmall’s Papable Peter. Though his focus may have shifted to King of Fighters in more recent events, Peter was originally and is still the top Marvel Player in the country. His last big appearance in UMVC3 was during the big First to 15 money match with Imperium Pro Team’s Garrett Baluyot, where he came back from a five game deficit, winning the set 15 - 14. His enemy Tom is no slouch however, and is considered as one of the top Spencer players in the country.
The first set of grand finals went by in the blink of an eye. Tom had managed to catch Peter calling out an assist and kill two characters at once in the first two games, giving him the quick two game lead. In game three, Tom was still riding off the momentum and made quick work of Peter, resetting the bracket and finishing the first set in less than 5 minutes.
In the second set however it was Peter’s turn to dominate. In the first two games, Peter overwhelmed Tom using Vergil and Doom to keep him on the defensive. In game three, Tom managed to start some sort of comeback, taking out two of Peter’s characters in the get go. He fell short however as Peter made a single character comeback using Dr. Doom to take the tournament. This gives Peter free entrance for another game over at Manila Cup 2017.
This weekend, the Road To Manila Cup will be held at Cosmic Gorgons located in Cubao Expo, Quezon City. Games to be featured include Blazblue Central Fiction and Injustice 2.