Who wants to be a millionaire? Not me, I suppose, since every time I try to play a fighting game it feels like my brain has been carbonated, but someone at next year's Capcom Cup certainly will. At the end of the ninth season of its Street Fighter 5-focused Capcom Pro Tour event, which concluded last Sunday, Capcom announced that next year's Street Fighter 6 tournament will up the prize pool from $300K to $2 million.
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$2 million is the prize pool for the entire event, but $1 million of it will go to the winner of the Capcom Cup, the final event of the Pro Tour. To put that into perspective, this year's prize pool was split across a whole bunch of players, with $120K, $50K, and $20K going to the first, second, and third-place players respectively.
A million bucks isn't a fortune by esports standards, where Dota and Fortnite players compete for prize pools in the tens of millions, but it's a lot for the fighting game community. This year's first-place player was a Dominican Street Fighter virtuoso by the name of Saul Leonardo "MenaRD" Mena, and Liquipedia lists his approximate total winnings from competitions at around $400K. Even a super-famous figure like SonicFox sits somewhere around $700K. The opportunity to take home $1 million, then, is a wild outlier for fighting games.
Capcom hasn't said when the next Capcom Pro Tour will be, but given that the last one just ended, it's still some ways away. Most likely, players will have some time to familiarise themselves with Street Fighter 6 after that game releases on June 2, and the million-dollar Capcom Cup will happen around the same time next year, in February 2024.
We're pretty intrigued by Street Fighter 6 around here. Street Fighter 5 launched to a tepid reaction in 2016 thanks to slim content pickings and buggy netcode, but Capcom seems like it's learnt from its mistakes. We're talking an eighteen-character roster, rollback netcode, and a meaty campaign at launch. There's even a new "Dynamic" control scheme so helpless button-mashers like me don't look quite as ridiculous whenever we try to play. I don't think I'll be taking home a million bucks anytime soon, though. If only there was an international Morrowind tournament.
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One of Josh's first memories is of playing Quake 2 on the family computer when he was much too young to be doing that, and he's been irreparably game-brained ever since. His writing has been featured in Vice, Fanbyte, and the Financial Times. He'll play pretty much anything, and has written far too much on everything from visual novels to Assassin's Creed. His most profound loves are for CRPGs, immersive sims, and any game whose ambition outstrips its budget. He thinks you're all far too mean about Deus Ex: Invisible War.