Evan “Larfen” Himes
This previous weekend saw the 2021 Chicago Arcadian, where the vast swathes of unranked players in CLM and surrounding regions gathered around to see who would come out on top. We had entrants from Wisconsin, Minnesota, and Indiana in addition to the host state of Illinois in attendance.
Before we get started on the tournament results, I just want to give a quick shout out to several people who worked behind the scenes at this tournament, many of which I’ve previously mentioned in a spotlight article, but deserve the praise.
First, I’d like to shout out Flashburn117 and Bryana for running the main and side streams, respectively. These two have consistently shown up as Chicago’s streamers this year and once again ran a great show this year. It’s great not only to broadcast the tournament live to viewers but also to save replays for study, which no doubt our competitors will put to good use.
Secondly, thanks once again to MeleedyMods for running her controller booth at this event. Controllers have become only more important as the years have gone on and it’s great that we have a consistent modder to attend our events.
Additionally, Chicago’s most unsung hero MattPopa is to thank for the graphics, stream overlays, and smash.gg page for this year’s Arcadian. Not to mention, he’s done an incredible amount of work to create this very site!
Finally, an ENORMOUS shout out to Unsure for running the event in the first place! He’s done so much work for the scene in securing the venue and organizing volunteers to run a smooth event and every member of CLM should be eternally grateful for his presence.
With that out of the way, let’s look at the top 8 placers at this event!
7th – Snacklepackle and Aero
All of Champaign’s hopes and dreams rested on our highest placing Captain Falcon player, Snacklepackle. After winning their placement pool over CLM mainstay and PM aficionado Moy, Snacklepackle immediately lost their first set in top 32 to SLuRp, before clawing their way through losers over the likes of Tse and FeelinGood before eventually falling to Arpy in, admittedly, a blowout of a set in loser’s top 8.
Meanwhile, Chicago up-and-comer Aero made an impressive loser’s run of his own, after in round 2 of winners becoming one of the many victims of Scal’s underdog run. Aero won a game 5 set over the dangerous Pregnantand16 from Northwest Indiana, then went on to defeat SLuRp and his eternal rival Anwarrior to secure his top 8 placement. Aero eventually fell to the CHICAGO (and Wisconsin) Sheik Seal in a 3-0 loss.
5th – Arpy and Seal
Surprisingly, Marth main Arpy was double eliminated by Fox at this Arcadian. In fact, in every set besides those he lost Arpy did not drop a single game, dominantly disposing of SLuRp, Chicago mainstay Lazarous, and Snacklepackle. Unfortunately, he just didn’t have what it took to defeat Scal and Giogoat this time.
Seal had a great run this tournament, but was yet another victim of the Foxes. This comes as less of a surprise to a Sheik main than a Marth, however. After losing 3-0 to Northwest Indiana Fox (and the training partner of the eventual winner) FeelinGood, Seal eliminated GuyO, Moy, Phalanx (who had a hell of a run himself), and Aero before eventually losing a nailbiter last game set to Scal. He immediately dusted himself off and commentated the rest of the tournament.
4th – Scal
Honestly, I was shocked to see the seeding of Scal at this tournament. The eventual 4th place finisher was expected to place 17th! It’s not totally unreasonable to seed him this way, as he has never been able to travel to Chicago tournaments much since he lives pretty far out of the city. My personal experience of his play led me to believe he was a scary competitor though, and he showed it at this tournament. Playing a very calculated, disciplined Fox, Scal battled his way to winner’s semi’s defeating Tse (twice!) and tournament favorites Aero and Arpy. However, Scal’s discipline wasn’t enough to overcome the notorious Samus matchup and fell to Frost 3-0 in winners, before taking out Seal and falling to our 3rd place finisher…
3rd – GIOG0AT
No doubt the fan favorite of the bracket, crowds formed when Gio sat down to play. It’s not hard to understand why, Gio has been around for a long time, and is so sociable that it seems that he’s friends with everybody. Not to mention that his Fox was shmovin’ like you wouldn’t believe at this tournament: Gio’s technical Fox took out Minnesota’s deadliest threat (and highest placing Luigi) in RanD, and the equally technical Anwarrior before getting iced out by Rockford’s Casual. After only dropping one game to Arpy in the funniest way imaginable, Gio once again displayed dominance in the Fox ditto by 3-0’ing Scal. However, Gio’s fire was snuffed out once again by Frost’s Samus. The way he was playing that day, it truly seemed like the notoriously tricky and stonewalling bounty hunter was the only thing that could possibly stop him from achieving victory.
2nd – Casual
Rockford’s Casual was my personal favorite to win the event. This pink Samus had everything it seemed he needed going into the event: the best record vs top players in region, connections in his friendship with top Samus TheSWOOPER, and lessons with Chicago’s most studious player, Ober. And going into grand finals, it seemed like a done deal. Casual had wiped the floor with the competition, and had not dropped a single game all tournament versus powerful foes such as Phalanx, Giogoat, and Frost. He could watch loser’s finals comfortable in the fact that he had sent both players to that position 3-0. However, game 1 of grand finals showed Casual that he was going to have to sweat to get the win, as he dropped it to fellow Samus and eventual winner of the 2021 Chicago Arcadian…
1st – Frost
Weeks before the Arcadian, Frost and Casual promised each other that they’d meet in grand finals for a Samus ditto for all the marbles. Though the viewers certainly dreaded it, nonetheless as the tournament progressed it became clear that it was pretty much an inevitability. Casual, as mentioned before, didn’t even drop a game before grand finals. Frost’s path there was a bit rockier, dropping a game in pools to one Dr. Hunk and being taken to game 5 by his perennial practice partner FeelinGood. After falling to Casual in Winner’s Finals, it was up to Frost to make it back for destiny, and he did just that by taking out Giogoat 3-0. With fate secured, all that was left was for the two Samuses to battle it out to see who would reign supreme that day. After a back and forth first set, Frost landed a charge shot to seal game 5 and bring it to a reset. Set 2 saw Casual SD’ing at 0 in a crucial game 3, and Frost rode that momentum to take the tournament after a total of 12 games of Samus dittos.
Congratulations to Frost for winning the Chicago Arcadian! We hope to see even greater things from him in the future.
Long live CLM!