Looking to head to EVO, the fighting game championships in Las Vegas? Hold on! If you don't plan your trip well, you will find yourself broke, sad, and hungry... a lot like any other trip to Vegas. Here are our 10 Tips for Surviving EVO.
While this entry in our 10 Tips for Surviving EVO might be a bit difficult for anyone who is taking a plane to Vegas, locals should seriously consider bringing their own setup. EVO draws in thousands of people from all around the world, and that means it will be highly unlikely that a free console will always be available for matches. Luckily, if you bring your own console and controller you can set it up in your hotel room and run your own salty suite. Even better, set it up in the 'bring your own console hall' and help make the convention itself a little better.
Many people go to EVO, play one or two matches in a tournament, lose, and then go home sad. This is the wrong way to do EVO. Instead, play lots of casual matches with lots of different people. Not only will this warm you up for your eventual tournament matches, it will allow you to meet tons of new people in the process. Also, it will keep you active even after you lost, which will make going to EVO seem like it’s way more worth it.
Take this rule to heart. Wireless controllers are banned from EVO, completely. Why? Because wireless controllers remain synched to tournament setups and if you accidentally press a button while walking around the show floor even after your match is up, you can interrupt someone else’s match. This once happened in a finals match and no one knew how to handle it. So keep your wireless controllers at home and bring your own wired pad or stick. Don’t be that bum that always is looking to borrow someone else’s controller because you aren’t prepared.
When playing in tournaments at EVO, you will be very tempted to leave to check out the sites of Vegas. Don’t! While Vegas is interesting, you need to be around for your tournament pools. If you wander off when your name is called, you will be disqualified. Nobody wants to travel halfway around the world and spend a huge chunk of their pay check just to be kicked out of the tournament they were playing in because they felt like getting a burger.
While it’s tempting to simply binge on Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 and Street Fighter IV at EVO, you’ll quickly burn yourself out if that’s all you play. EVO is actually one of the best places to try out new indie games. Cleanse your pallet with some lesser played titles that no one knows how to play. Spend some time in panel rooms to give your legs a rest. Break up your time so that you don’t overload yourself when playing the pros.
This is just a good piece of advice in general, book flights early. Flights to Vegas can get incredibly expensive. You can usually save some cash, and some sanity, by choosing to head down to EVO on the Thursday before and head back the Monday after. Of course this means you’ll have to spend more on a room, but luckily our next Tip for Surviving EVO will help you out there.
It is very tempting to get your own room when staying at EVO. But remember, this is a Las Vegas hotel we are talking about. It’s going to be expensive! So try to find a group of people to split your room with. Sure, this means that someone is going to have to either sleep on the floor or share a bed, but its way better than shouldering the entire cost by yourself.
It’s time once again to stress the importance of eating and sleeping at huge events. Get yourself a burger and at least six hours of rest or you will be sorry. Every EVO you will see lines of people pushed up against the wall, passed out due to their own hunger and exhaustion. Granted, you only have limited time at the event, but cramming in more time at your favorite fighting game isn’t worth starving yourself.
EVO is the place where the best fighting game players in the world congregate to test their skills against each other. Here’s a hint, you probably aren’t one of them, or at least you probably aren’t one of them if you have to read a guide on how to survive the event. That means that you will most likely lose your first few tournaments. It’s just how things are. But don’t take it too hard. The very privilege to play against greats like Daigo Umehara and Justin Wong is its own reward.
Finally, the most important in our 10 Tips for Surviving EVO -- shower. For the love of god, shower. The smell of the tournament hall after three days of non-stop gameplay is disgusting. You can practically feel the gamer funk in the air, like a haze of garbage and body odor. We don’t care how hardcore you are, wear deodorant and shower. No excuses!