“Nobody can take this away from me. This is something where I can say YES I can do this, this character can do this. Now I have that thing and it just makes me feel more positive than ever about what I can do in this game.”
Civil War was a thrill ride from start-to-finish and no other player personified that more than Fly Society’s own Griffin “Fatality” Miller and his Captain Falcon. Wins over Rei “Komorikiri” Fuwukara and Nairoby “Nairo” Quezada, prompted his run all the way to Grand Finals. I asked him if this was his best performance ever:
“Oh, easy”, said Miller.
“I played the best I’ve ever played,” Fatality continued.
In “the most stacked Smash 4 tournament of all-time’, Fatality runs the gauntlet and finishes second. The 28th ranked player on the PGRv2 took out a litany of higher-ranked players. Even in less than ideal matchups, Fatality was getting the edge by adapting to his opponents tendencies.
“I had to go through a ton of tough matchups” said Miller, “but I did it anyway. Then again, I think Falcon’s also a better character than most of the niche characters. My matchups aren’t as bad. Even if I had 19 losing matchups every single one of them might be 45:55, which is doable. “
Furthermore, Fatality is a Falcon loyalist and has been a major part in growing the Captain Falcon meta-game. He’s the highest ranked Falcon-main and the only Falcon on PGRv2.
“I think that more Falcons are going to start coming out,” said Fatality.”I’ve been convinced for quite a while now that he’s at least a fairly viable character and I just needed something I could show the world and say ’Hey, I’m not just crazy. Look I can do this and if I can do this, so can you’'”
Additionally, he showed the world that any character is capable of making a deep run with smart game planning. Fatality went through plenty of preparation for his matches against Komorikiri and Nairo.”Well, up until today, I had always kind of struggled in the cloud matchup,” said Fatality
“I guess I just haven’t had enough practice to figure it out yet. But leading up to the Komorikiri match I was studying tons of Cloud footage and talking to a lot people about the matchup,” said Fatality,”and just trying to figure it out. It’s been one of the few top tier matchups that I just haven’t had a handle on yet. And after doing all that while studying my most recent set with him before that when I lost. I was basically, at least seemingly, able to figure out the matchup.”
Consequently, Fatality got down early in both his sets against Komorikiri and Nairo. As he stated, he had a specific game plan to outlast his opponents adjustments and that was clearly displayed. The number of kill setups with his delayed up-airs gave everyone problems all weekend.
Fatality vs Nairo
Nairo, the third best player in the world, got a quick 2-0 lead over fatality. “I mean, I was feeling nervous but at the same time he and I were both dropping a some things here and there,” Fatality stated.
“Two games were just the data I needed to figure out how he thinks,” said Fatality.
Moreover, he explained the philosophy behind his decision making process before-and-after sets: “I try not to think about the game in a general sense I’m more specific than that. I try to focus entirely on psychological analysis, profiling my opponents thoughts, and then in addition to that just crafting all the best strategies to counter whatever it is I happen to be seeing at the moment”
Character Diversity in Top 8
His win over Nairo was the marque victory in his run to Grand Finals. In top 8, he eliminated Noriyuki “Kirhara” Kirahara, Zack “Captain Zack” Lauth, and T before reaching Samuel “Dabuz” Robert Buzby, in Grand Finals. That’s a Donkey Kong, Bayonetta, and Link main on his road to facing a Rosalina.
Fatality wasn’t surprised to see the character diversity in top 8, “most of the stuff that shuts down mid-tier characters is stuff like Diddy Kong, especially Diddy Kong, Cloud, and to a smaller extent Bayo are the characters, that for the most part, invalidate lower tier characters and since the main representatives from those characters were less successful,” said Fatality
The Civil War losers bracket bloodbath led to a more diverse top 8. “It’s not too surprising that when you also have the best players of those smaller, more niche characters then when they don’t have to necessarily deal with those awful matchups,” said Fatality.
The Civil War Crew Battle
Fatality’s not bitter about not being selected for Team Ally, but he’s making sure that in the future they’ll have no choice but to pick him. He’s well on his way with his best career finish at a super major. Even with the raucous singles tournament, the crew battle was the main event.
I asked Fatality if this was the future of Smash event, “I don’t think there’s really a future in it because there aren’t enough, almost hard rivalries or enemies in the community yet,” said Miller. “It doesn’t feel that inspiring for most of the players involved. I know from speaking with people who typically are a part of these crew battles that while they’re fun for the crowd the players usually care very little.”
He continued on talking about the general tournament, “It was absolutely incredible. Just as a tournament itself its probably the best tournament I’ve ever been to. The venue was amazing. The production was amazing. Playing outside was really cool.There was basically like a giant concert venue on stage,” said Fatality.
The next tournament you can find Fatality is at ComicCon in Mississippi and later in April he’ll be attending CEO Dreamland which is the next big major. Fatality has put himself on the map and will now be looked at as a more potent threat to win tournaments.
“From Our Haus to Yours”