At CEO 2019, I was joined by the famed BeastCoast|Phil "EE" Visu, who's best known for his gift of gab on the mic. He's one the proud and few Smash Bros. legends when it comes to commentary, and been part of the Smash community since the mid 2000s.
Tell me about the current state of Smash Ultimate.
Joker is the best character, and FOX| Mkleo is the best player. Everyone is so viable it’s always in flux. Wario and wolf don’t seem as dominant as they were in the beginning. Palutena too. Olimar is getting jammed. Snake is solid. It can be hard to find the best character we agree on, but the meta continues to grow and stay fresh. Our numbers are great for every event. It headlined CEO and will probably headline EVO as well . Both of these events will headline the biggest of the FGC.
Do you see some more teams getting involved in smash ultimate?
I think there are teams interested in Smash bros, but they don’t know who is worth it yet. 100 thieves, FaZe is as well. I think we will see some players contracts get bought out by new teams. Some of these companies aren't paying what these players deserve. Some of these top players are only getting a thousand a month, and will leave for a new team. I predict that we will see multiple players change teams.
What is it with sponsorships and smash? What makes one company choose one game over the other?
Best and biggest sponsorships come from Melee side. Most players take the first offer to just have an actual backing. I’m not getting money from the org to match. Players are talking about salaries etc, so people are realizing their worth and the viewership is growing.
What's the difference in Smash Bros. Ultimate and Smash 4? It's seeing success this early that never happened for smash 4's entire lifespan.
Downfall of smash 4, they stopped doing patches, and oversexualized with Bayonetta. It pissed off a lot of people. The system (Nintendo Switch) itself revolutionized the game, being able to play anywhere. You can keep getting patches. Even if you say Joker is getting bayo vibes, it can be patched. Go back a couple months, Leo got jammed in Japan with Joker.
People are giving it more attention and it’s just a better game. It’s really interesting because a lot of people enjoy streaming it so it’s hitting on multiple levels. I’m seeing smash finally become real esports. Long as nintendo continues to invest teams will keep running.
How'd you get into the scene and commentary? What interested you?
I got into commentary around the time Smash Bros Brawl was prominent. Streaming had started to pick up at events, this was like March of 2008. I had gotten 13th at an event and had nothing else to do, so I dragged my friend onto the mic with me since it was top eight and no one else wanted to do it. We just talked crap while being hyped, and when I checked the YouTube comments a few weeks later, people thought it was funny. From there, I decided to do it more often, and eventually full time. I never thought it would pick up this much but as smash grew, so did opportunity and I love it. I’ve been on a few teams over the years, but BeastCoast is by far the best.
The constant support for my craft and stream is too good, and I’m glad more casters have found sponsors to help them as well. FGC/Smash in general is so much more diverse then other gaming communities when it comes to players and talent. I’ve never felt uncomfortable in a racial sense at all, though the time I tried to branch out to PUBG, I was told “you don’t fit the look/sound we need,” so I took that as I’m too urban? I don't know either way, but that ended my love of PUBG and it’s been Smash and 2KLeague ever since *laughter*.
Can you give us a top 10 for the PGR?
Light/Glutonny/Raito other 9-10 possibilities
Those are the 10 names I’d expect to see in top 10 excluding Ally who I believe won’t be included.