In March, Joseph “Mang0” Marquez teamed up with Super Smash Bros. event organizing team 2GGaming to host The Mang0, a super-regional Melee tournament in Long Beach, California. With its underdog bracket runs, drunken commentary, and raucous atmosphere, The Mang0 was a unique event in the early-year tournament schedule—and a success. This weekend, Mang0 and 2GG will bring the action to Mang0’s hometown, Norwalk, California, for the second installation of the tournament series: The Mang0: Homecoming.
As the Melee season comes to a close, every event has increasing importance and relevance to the year-end rankings, and The Mang0: Homecoming has the potential to tip the scales. The tournament features two “god”-level attendees, Mang0 and William “Leffen” Hjelte; barring upsets, these rivals will be seeded to face each other in grand finals. Though Leffen has been known to sandbag at these events in the past—he primarily played Marth and Mewtwo at The Mang0—he lost his last set against the Californian, at The Big House 8, and will likely take this tournament seriously as he prepares for Smash Summit 7 the following weekend.
Mang0 and Leffen will be joined by several “demigods” in the next tier of players. After a disappointing ninth-place finish at GameTyrant Expo 2017, Jeffrey “Axe” Williamson will look to redeem himself at The Mang0: Homecoming. Similarly, 11th-ranked Zachary “SFAT” Cordoni will continue his campaign to return to the top 10 rankings this weekend. The Mang0 champion James “Swedish Delight” Liu will be in attendance to defend his title, but he will have to contend with the usual spread of Southern California heavy hitters, including Johnny “S2J” Kim, Joey “Lucky” Aldama, Weston “Westballz” Dennis, and more. All in all, 31 members of last year’s SSBMRank will be in the venue at this weekend’s event.
And for good reason: there’s more than just money and prestige on the line at The Mang0: Homecoming. As the final Smash Summit 7 qualifier, The Mang0: Homecoming will send its highest-placing non-invited player to next weekend’s Smash Summit invitational. Since top seeds Mang0, Leffen, and Axe have already qualified or been invited to Smash Summit 7, SFAT is the highest-seeded player with a shot at qualifying this weekend. If he doesn’t make it in, Smash Summit 7 will be the first Summit event that the CLG-sponsored Fox main will not participate in. Some of the players who qualified for this Summit via the voting round, such as Swedish Delight and Anthony “Slox” Detres, will be in attendance to train for the invitational (and likely to attend “Summit .5,” the traditional training session/grindfest hosted by Mang0 during the week leading up to a Smash Summit event.
If you’re looking to watch a high-level Super Smash Bros. Melee tournament that doesn’t take itself too seriously, look no farther than The Mang0: Homecoming. You can catch all the action this weekend on Mang0’s Twitch channel.