On Sunday, Beyond the Summit ran its first open Super Smash Bros. Melee event, a joint tournament/roast celebrating the life and times of veteran player Hugo “HugS” Gonzalez. Though HugS didn’t enter his eponymous event, the trophy still went to one of his Southern Californian comrades: Johnny “S2J” Kim, who defeated Weston “Westballz” Dennis, Kevin “PewPewU” Toy, and Zain “Zain” Naghmi—twice—to win the tournament without dropping a set.
S2J has not had a bad season by any means, but winning a tournament of this size is a significant feather in the Captain Falcon main’s cap. Capped at 256 entrants, The Roast is S2J’s first tournament win since Irish regional Schism 2 in February, and his largest-ever tournament victory.
With no “gods” in attendance, The Roast acted as an “arcadian” of sorts, allowing players on the cusp of elite status to test their abilities against each other. Zain, the first seed and presumptive winner of the event, was able to make his way to grand finals, defeating CLG teammates Zachary “SFAT” Cordoni (in a tight five-game winner’s semi-finals set) and PewPewU (in loser’s finals), but his weakness to Captain Falcon showed in his two sets against S2J. In a grand finals smackdown reminiscent of his loss to Alex “Captain Smuckers” Cottrell in grand finals of The Gang Hosts a Melee Tournament, Zain was only able to squeak out one game win in an otherwise one-sided set.
Despite Zain’s higher seed, S2J’s victory over the Marth main is no surprise to anyone who watched the two players’ streamed friendlies on Joseph “Mang0” Marquez’s stream in the week leading up to the event. After losing a number of matches to the Falcon main, Zain was heard to express that he thought S2J was the best Captain Falcon against Marth—better even than Justin “Wizzrobe” Hallett.
After his second-place finish, Zain took to Twitter, promising his fans that he would return to the lab to study and improve at the Captain Falcon matchup.
PewPewU’s run to third place deserves mention as well; on his way there, the Marth main fended off challenges from Westballz and a red-hot Santiago “Santiago” Piñon. In his first large tournament since Genesis 5, Santiago used his Falco to defeat Joey “Lucky” Aldama and Shephard “Fiction” Lima before tying with SFAT in fifth place. Though his flashy Falco play drew excitement across the venue, Santiago was not the highest-placing user of the character; he fell just behind Westballz, who scrapped his way to a fourth-place finish.
The event’s Top 8 was rounded out by seventh-place finishers Lucky, who was able to take a win over Armando “ARMY” Del Duca in loser’s bracket, and Fiction, who captured his own impressive victory over Charlie “AbsentPage” McKinley at the event.
As for the roast itself, it went off largely without a hitch, though some jokes attracted the ire of some members of the Smash community for their purportedly sexist or somewhat stereotype-laden nature. Regardless, it was the roastee, not the roasters, who stole the show; when HugS took the mic, he delivered a vicious counter-roast that blasted all those who hoped to humiliate him at the event. Of course, it was all in good fun, and the Samus main tweeted out his enthusiasm about the event once it came to a close.