Justin Wong thinks aggressive puzzle video games may very well be as massive as fighters sometime
Final week, with no warning, Tetris 99 was unleashed upon the world, and puzzle video games won’t ever be the identical. Infusing the “me in opposition to the world” psychology of the battle royale style and making use of it to the extremely accessible, typically non-violent motion of essentially the most profitable recreation of all time could look like a no brainer in idea, however in observe, it is a work of genius. Individuals who had by no means thought-about puzzlers as viable spectator sports activities at the moment are marveling at high-level Tetris play in document numbers. The sport’s success might mark a tipping level for the style, taking it from a leisurely, time-killing diversion to a cutthroat, prime-time fundamental occasion.
Justin Wong is aware of all about these sorts of tipping factors. He was the co-star of “EVO Second 37,” an occasion many cite as the precise cut-off date when watching high-level combating gameplay went from one thing that was just for the FGC to a sport with a lot broader attraction. Since then he is gone on to rank #1 in numerous tournaments, taking the highest spot in a various vary of video games together with Road Fighter V, Pokkén Match, Skullgirls, Mortal Kombat X, Marvel vs. Capcom 2, Vampire Savior, and lots of others.
Justin additionally consults with recreation devs on roster steadiness and different areas that attraction to his specific experience. Crystal Disaster, the huge crossover puzzle/combating recreation, is the most recent venture he is pitched in on. It is set to launch this Could, and given the recognition of Tetris 99, it may very well be poised for an enormous success, however provided that it is in a position to attraction to the FGC and puzzle followers in equal measure.
We talked to Justin about all that, what he thinks it should take to make the FGC take puzzle video games extra severely, and perhaps most essential of all, which recreation he would add Smash Bros. Brawl-style tripping to if he had his druthers. His reply shocked and stunned me.