EVO 2023 lineup features Street Fighter 6, and the surprise announcement of a fighting game classic

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EVO 2023 is less than six months away, and we now know which games (opens in new tab) will be featured at the huge fighting game tournament. There are a few changes this year too, like bigger prize pools across the board and a slight adjustment to the traditional bracket format.

There’ll be a total of eight games running this year, most of them unsurprising mainstays. Street Fighter 6 is making its EVO debut, while Tekken 7 will be appearing at the tournament for the seventh time. Guilty Gear Strive, Melty Blood: Type Lumina and King of Fighters 15 are all returning for a second time, and Mortal Kombat 11 will be making its third appearance. Dragon Ball Fighterz will also be there, making its fourth appearance at EVO.

A surprising addition, however, is the return of Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 as the “first EVO Throwback tournament.” The game last made an appearance as a side tournament in 2018 but hasn’t been a main tournament feature since 2017. It’ll be its seventh appearance at EVO, and its return has a ton of fans (opens in new tab) and pros (opens in new tab) alike understandably hyped. Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 4, anyone? 

Personally, I’m excited to see Tekken 7 potentially have its last hurrah at EVO before Tekken 8 comes along, and this is likely one of the first major tournaments that’ll feature Street Fighter 6 following its June release date. I’ve never gelled massively with 2D fighters, but it’s hard to deny how goddamn stylish Capcom’s upcoming fighter looks.

EVO’s also making an attempt to make the winnings a little more enticing for entrants. Every game will have a $25,000 prize pool minimum to split among its top players. Fighting games have never been the most lucrative of esports, but between this and the next Capcom Cup offering a $1 million prize for its winner, things are starting to look a little better. Bigger games like Street Fighter 6 and Tekken 7 will likely see larger prize pools, but it’s nice to see smaller games receiving reasonable investment, too. 

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Instead of streaming its top eight players for each game, as is traditionally the case, EVO 2023 is opting to only stream the top six. It’s all in the name of efficiency and avoiding sets running over on-stream, which can be a fairly common occurrence.

EVO 2023 will run from August 4 until August 6, taking place at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas. This will be the tournament’s second year back in person after the pandemic. It was originally meant to return in 2021, but was cancelled (opens in new tab) due to concerns about Covid-19.