Every year, thousands of fighting game enthusiasts make a pilgrimage to Las Vegas for the Evolution Championship Series. The prestigious championships create some of the fighting game community's greatest moments—and Evo 2019 was no exception.
The open-tournament format weeds players out over multiple rounds, and its prize pool is determined in part by competitor sign-ups. With an open-tournament format and thousands of participants each contributing $10 in registration fees to the prize purse, Evo 2019's total prize pool is over $200,000 (as calculated by Esport Earnings).
Game developers also support their titles by adding to prize pools, as Capcom did this year by contributing $50,000 to the Street Fighter V purse. The final eight players for each title are allocated a split of their game's prize money, with the Final winner earning 60 percent.
In order of completion, here are the winners of each game's finals and their biggest highlights this weekend.
Yuttoto could not be denied. After pulling out the closest of wins against Skyll in the Winners Finals, he went on and dismantled Bluegod in the Grand Finals.
Kayane also placed in the top eight, thus earning a cut of the prize money. After tying for seventh, she alluded to Slayer, the gamer who said women couldn't place in the top eight at Evo last year, on Twitter.
Under Night In-Birth Exe:Late[st]
ClearLamp_o did his thing, went 11-0 and defeated Oushuu-Hittou to win the visual novel and 2D fighting game's Grand Finals.
Dragon Ball FighterZ
In 2018, SonicFox defeated GO1 in the DBFZ Grand Finals. In 2019, fans rooted for a resumption of the rivalry, and the two obliged, going undefeated en route to their rematch.
After pulling off the tiebreaker, match-five win, GO1 broke down into tears, embraced his rival and turned to face his thousands of supporters with his hand held high, like a heavyweight champion, by a beaming SonicFox.
Rocking a T-shirt with an adorable bear on it, Infiltration delivered a loss to Kazunoko in the Grand Finals.
Mortal Kombat 11
Second in DBFZ, first in MK11 after an 11-0 run and a win over Dragon. SonicFox is queer, black, a furry and a gift to the fighting game community.
BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle
By beating Kyamei in the Grand Finals, Shinku became the first American ever to win this title and earned enough loot to complicate his trip home.
Street Fighter V
The Street Fighter championship is returned to Japan, as Bonchan went 11-0 and showed some clutch composure against his fellow Red Bull teammate, Big Bird, in the Grand Finals.
Winner: Arslan Ash
With hundreds of thousands of people watching, Pakistan's Arslan Ash became the first-ever unified Evo champion—having won Tekken in both Evo Japan and Las Vegas. And it took an incredibly tight win over South Korea's Knee to earn the unprecedented honor.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
After storming through the loser's bracket, MKLeo came back from down 2-0 against the USA's Tweek in the Grand Finals and forced a Grand Finals Reset. Running Joker, he outlasted every look Tweek gave him as Pokemon Trainer, earned the 3-0 victory for the championship and immediately got on his phone to tweet out his hype.