After taking home the Evo 2013 Super Smash Bros. Melee crown, and then all the necessary rest that comes after winning such an event, Mango was able to sit down and talk to Nintendo Enthusiast about the tournament, preparing himself for the event, the future of competitive Smash, and much more.
What did it feel like when Melee was officially confirmed for Evo 2013?
It was huge for a few reasons. Our community would finally be able to show everyone how amazing the game we play has become. I had a personal reason too – I had been fiending [sic] to win a big tournament, and what better than the main stage at Evo.
What is it like preparing for such a large and difficult tournament?
My prep for Evo was pretty intense. I was playing as much as 5 hours a day, something I hadn\’t done in years. I think it was more important to prepare myself mentally and understand what was at stake.
Evo 2013 Super Smash Bros. Melee Grand Finals: Mango vs. Wobbles
What were you particularly trying to improve on as a Fox player going into Evo?
Any Fox player will tell you, it’s all about consistency. I focused a lot on just trying to get my movement smooth and consistent. I also had to work on recovery – a big part of what separates the good Foxes from the bad ones is their recovery.
Who were you most excited to compete against? Anyone you were afraid to compete against?
I\’m never really afraid to play anyone. I feel like if I play my best, I shouldn\’t lose to anyone. The only person I really wanted to play was Armada – I had just beaten all the top players pretty solidly a few weeks ago at Zenith. So I just wanted to play Armada, because it would probably be the last time I would have that chance.
What are your thoughts on Wobbles\’ run to Grand Finals and second place finish?
I don\’t think anyone put him in the top 8, much less on the winner’s side of Grand Finals. It’s pretty hard to pull major upsets in Melee, so Wobbles’s run was one of the most impressive runs that we\’ve seen in a while. To say otherwise would be silly. Big thumbs up to him.
\”So I just wanted to play Armada, because it would probably be the last time I would have that chance.\”
For casual players out there, briefly describe the Fox vs. Ice Climbers match-up from your perspective as a Fox main.
The Fox vs Ice Climbers match-up is definitely in Fox’s favor. It’s really easy to separate them with shines (down+B) after drills (down+A in the air) and nairs (neutral A in the air). Fox’s shine has set knockback, so he can kill Nana with a shine at any percent. You basically have to focus on not getting grabbed, and KO-ing Nana ASAP.
With Evo 2013 over with, what events are you looking toward as a player to prepare for?
Now that Evo’s over, I\’m just looking forward to seeing Melee blossom. The community seems to be growing again and I\’m looking forward to attending all the tournaments that come with that growth. Melee was just added to LanHammer 2013 in San Francisco. This tournament has Starcraft 2, DotA, League of Legends, Marvel vs. Capcom 3 and Super Street Fighter IV. It’s great to see Melee in the lineup. The game has so much heart.
What’s the future of competitive Melee look like now that Evo was such a big success for the game?
I definitely think that competitive Smash will grow like crazy. It has already grown a lot – we are hearing a lot about Melee in most of the big FGC events. So it’s gonna be great times for Smash.
Are you optimistic that Smash for Wii U can be a legitimate competitive game? Why or why not?
Based off of what I\’ve seen from the new Smash, I don\’t think I\’m going to like it as much. It looks like a lot of fun and I\’ll definitely play with my friends, but after 7 years of competitive Melee, if it doesn\’t have the Melee engine it’s hard for me to be very interested competitively. We\’ll see.
As we wrap it up here, anything you\’d like to close with?
I\’d like to say thanks to my sponsor, Melee It On Me, for supporting me, and thanks to my fans (the Mango Nation :P) for sticking with me. You can watch me practice and talk about Melee on Twitch at www.twitch.tv/meleeitonme, and you can follow me on twitter at @mang0__