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"VIRTUA FIGHTER esports CHALLENGE CUP SEASON_1【1st】FINAL" Tournament Report! Interviews with FREE Division winners and runners-up are also available!

「VIRTUA FIGHTER esports CHALLENGE CUP SEASON_1【1st】FINAL」大会レポート!優勝者・準優勝者へのインタビューも!

The " VIRTUA FIGHTER esports CHALLENGE CUP SEASON_1 [1st] FINAL ", an official tournament for the PS4 software " Virtua Fighter esports " hosted by SEGA Corporation, will be held on June 18, 2022 (Saturday ). The tournament was held on Saturday, June 18, 2022.
In this competition, 16 finalists from the FREE division and 2 finalists from the U22 division, who have won the preliminary rounds, will compete against each other to determine the winner of SEASON 1, or the first winner of this competition.
In addition, the winner and runner-up of the FREE Division will receive a professional license issued by the Japan eSports Union (JeSU)!
The "Virtua Fighter" tournament is a well-known 3D fighting game, and the editorial department of saiganak.com, which is full of fighting gamers, cannot remain silent about it.
So we paid a visit to the headquarters of SEGA SAMMY Group to cover the tournament!

We've arrived at SEGA SAMMY Group headquarters!

Sega Sammy Group Headquarters
Saiga NAK

We arrived at the headquarters of SEGA SAMMY Group in Osaki, Shinagawa-ku, Tokyo!
The floor is filled with items that remind us of Sega Sammy's history!

SEGA SAMMY Group Reception
Saiga NAK

SEGA SAMMY HOLDINGS was formed in 2004 through the merger of SEGA, which dominated the arcade and consumer game market, and Sammy.
As of 2022, it is still one of the leading entertainment content business companies in Japan.

In front of the reception desk, Sonic, Sega's signature character, and Eiriyan, Sammy's signature character, welcome you!

On the right side of the reception area are the uniforms of the " SEGA SAMMY PHENIX " of the professional mahjong league "M-League," the " SEGA SAMMY BASEBALL " of the hardball team for adults, and the " Tokyo Verdy " professional soccer club. uniforms of the professional soccer club "Tokyo Verdy" are on display!
The exhibits were so appealing to fans that I found myself snapping photos of them all.

MC, play-by-play, and commentary by gorgeous performers

Gorgeous performers gathered!
Saiga NAK
  • MC: Yurika Tachibana
  • MC: Erika Ishitobi
  • Guest: NO Motion.
  • Play-by-Play: Team Leader
  • Live Report : Wasakon
  • Cast: Moriji Aoki
MC Yurika Tachibana (left) and Erika Ishitobi (right)
Saiga NAK

The panelists included Yurika Tachibana, a multi-talented actress from Avex Management, voice actress Erika Ish itobi, and two members of NO Motion, whose popular fighting game impersonations and other works were well received by the audience. who are very popular for their fighting game impersonations.
In addition, "Virtua Fighter esports" Chief Producer Moriji Aoki and other splendid performers gathered to make the tournament a great success!

NO Motion.
Saiga NAK

Comedians NO Motion. appeared as "Taka Arashi" and "Akira Yuki"!
Just the presence of the two of them brightened up the atmosphere of the venue!

U22 Grand Final!

U22部門 出場選手
U22 Division Contestants

Player Name / Main Character

  • Jacky Bryant / Jacky Bryant
  • Ragna / Kage Maru

Jacky★ and Laguna entered the tournament posing with a shout of "Ready Go!
Both players looked nervous, but both expressed their enthusiasm, saying "I'm going to enjoy the competition as much as I can so that I can show what I've achieved so far.
It seemed that Jacky★ would have the upper hand since he was used to playing in tournaments and had beaten Ragna once in the preliminary round, but you never know what will happen in an official tournament.
Here is a report on the final match!

Jacky★ "Ruin Ryu" vs.

Ru Jacky* vs.
VF official channel

Ragna lost the first match 0-3 against Jacky★, who was determined to finish his combos.
Ragna seemed to be a little nervous against Jacky★ who was playing freely.

The second game followed. Laguna was able to change his character, but he continued to play "Kage Maru" and was aiming for revenge.
However, due to the precise and uninterrupted attacks of Jacky★'s "Ru-Ru Jacky," Laguna was once again the winner at 0-3!

In the third game, Laguna's combo using the wall exploded!
He finally got one back at 3-1.

Jacky* won!
VF official channel

It was a toss-up as to whether Jacky★ would win the match or Raguna would make a counter-champion move, but in the fourth round, Raguna found himself at a stage where he had no walls to fight against!
With a furious attack, Ragna decided to ring out, and with his momentum intact, Jacky★ won in straight games!

The winner of the U22 division is Jacky★!

優勝は滅リュウJacky★選手VF official channel

As the winner of the U22 division, Jacky★ was awarded the trophy and the in-game title of "Star Player".
Jacky★ also revealed that he usually plays with Ragna in room matches, and that his victory was due to his ability to counter Ragna's habits and fighting style.
When talking about his father cheering him on in the tournament, he was so nervous that he choked on his words, showing his first impression of the tournament.
Congratulations to Jacky★, Ruin Ryu, for winning the tournament!

FREE Division Tournament!

FREE部門 出場選手
FREE Division

Player name / Main character

  • Densetsu Espy / Jean Kujo
  • Akadan Wrinkles / Pai Chan
  • Jacky Bryant / Jacky Bryant
  • Headless Rider / Lei-Fei
  • Shizuo / Jacky Bryant
  • Pometalou / Jeffry McWild
  • Tane / Akira Yuki
  • SHU / Shun Di
  • Raion / Jacky Bryant
  • Buruha / Shun Di
  • Tonchan / Jacky Bryant
  • Shiro / Jacky Bryant
  • Balgo / Jean Kujo
  • Akira Homestay / Akira Yuki
  • Puuta / Jean Kujo
  • Leolao / Goh Hinogami

The tournament table released during the broadcast of the tournament showed many exciting match-ups between the same characters, hometowns, etc.!
This article will introduce some of the matches, but not all of them, so please check the tournament archives to see the matches you are interested in!

Tournament Table
VF official channel

Densetsu Espy" vs "Balgo

Densetsu ESPY" vs "Balgo
VF official channel

In the first match of the FREE Division, " Densetsu Espy," the "Grandma" of the Virtua world, and " Balgo " clashed!
Both players are "Jan" users and practice together until late at night the day before the game.
Both players had ambitions to play one of them in the finals, but they ended up fighting in the first match of the first round.

In the first round, Balgo attacked one-sidedly.
However, Densetsu Espy took the first round with almost no damage, and he continued in the same vein, taking the first match.

Both players have less than 10% health.
VF official channel

In the first round of the second match, both players had less than 10% of their strength.
Densetsu Espy's attack was successful just in time, and he took the first point.
In the second round, Densetsu Espy was close to cutting down Densetsu Espy's health to 80%, but he was hit by a combo from a tame kick, and Bargo was still unable to win.
It looked as if Balgo was going to be beaten at this point, but his onslaught quickly reduced Densetsu Espy's health, and he won the next match without taking any damage.
In the final round, both fighters were at about 50% health when Balgo's upper-level kick exploded!
The combo was enough to cut down both fighters, and Balgo won the second match 2-3.

In the first round of the third match, it was still unclear who would win the match, but Balgo took the lead with a counterattack, despite being down to millimeters in strength.
After a back-and-forth battle that went all the way to the final round, it was Balgo who put his opponent under pressure at the wall and landed the coup de grace!

Densetsu Espy's EXCELLENT!
VF official channel

Denzetsu Espy, unable to back down, closed out Balgo with no damage from the first round !
After that, Balgo took back two more points to take the lead at 1-2, but Denzetsu Espy, as if to make the cat bite the mice, attacked again and again!
He decided to use the wall to launch a one-sided counterattack, and Densetsu Espy won the fourth round.
In the final round, which was again a tug-of-war, Densetsu Espy won the game by reducing Balgo's health to 10% and waiting for the right moment to counterattack!
The score was 2-2, and the next round was truly the last.

Balgo jumps up in joy of victory and cannot be captured in the picture frame.
VF official channel

Although the match was pulled back to even, Balgo calmly took the first round!
In the second round, both players fought back and forth, but time ran out!
After a combo, Balgo was unable to complete a follow-up attack, and he was up 0-2!
In the third round, both players were slowly depleting their strength, and it was Balgo who landed the final blow!
The final round was 0-3 in favor of Balgo!

Densetsu Espy (left) and Balgo (right)
VF official channel

We saw a really hot fight from the first match in the FREE division!
The two players were like grandma and grandson, smiling as they left the tournament and congratulated each other on their good fights.
They were like a grandmother and her grandson, smiling as they left the place to congratulate each other for a good fight. They were like a grandmother and her grandson!

There were many more exciting matches in the tournament, so be sure to check out the tournament archives!

The finalists were "Balgo" and "Akadanwawapo"!

Balgo (left) and Akatan Wawapo (right), who won the right to obtain a professional license.
Saiga NAK

By participating in the finals, Balgo and Akadan Wasupo earned the right to obtain a Virtua Fighter professional license.
However, they still have one more goal: to win the championship!
After their first match, they felt that "the moves are pro! Bargo praised his opponent, saying that he felt that his moves were "professional!" and Akatan WASHI-PO said that he wanted to fight with the feeling of a challenger.
Let's start with a report on the final match.

Balgo vs.

Balgo vs.
VF official channel

Against Akatan Wasabo, who boasts an iron-clad guard, Balgo attacked boldly and won the first round.
However, Akatan Wasabo took advantage of a momentary lapse and scored a combo from a throw to win the first round in style.
After that, he continued to chip away at Balgo's strength with combos, winning rounds 3 and 4 to take the first match 3-1 in favor of Akatan Wasapo!

Balgo, who is known for his ability to come from behind, took the first round in the second match with a solid heavy one-two.
In the second and third rounds, Akatan Wasabo's iron-clad guard shone through as he slowly whittled away at his opponent to win.
I won't eat the same move over and over again! and a launch combo brought the score back to 2-2, but Balgo saw through a tame kick and returned the favor with a combo to win the second match 3-2, giving Akatan Wasippo a shot at the championship!

Balgo, who had taken the lead with almost no damage, won the second round with a risk-taking onslaught, and then used the wall to inflict heavy damage in the third run to win the third game in straight sets, 0-3 to Balgo.
Balgo showed that he is a fighter who can really get going when he is cornered!

Akatan Wawapo, who chose "El Blaze".
VF official channel

In the fourth round, Akadan Wasupo unexpectedly chose " El Blaze "!
This was a strange move by Akatan Wasupo, a player who knows how to use a variety of characters!
However, in the first round, Balgo did not care about that and attacked hard!
He took the first round with a chase attack that destroyed the stage.
Then, after two consecutive throws to Akatan Wasabo, who excels at guarding, Balgo scored another throw and took the second run as well.
With "El Blaze" as a hidden ball, Balgo won the fourth game 0-3!

The final game was a tangle, and the winner was the one who won the game.
Akatan WARAPO returned to his main character " Pi " and took on the final game.
In the first round, Balgo's tame kick was directly hit by Akadan Wasabo, and he was pushed against the wall, losing a point!
Akatan Wasippo seemed to be in a hurry because of his mistake, but he avoided Balgo's attack with a crouch and scored a combo to win back a point.
Both players went back and forth, and just when it looked like Balgo was going to use a throw to push Akatan Wasabo into the wall, Akatan Wasabo showed a quick thinking move to send him flying out of the ring to clinch the championship!
Akadan Wasippo was not about to back down, and he too began the tournament by pushing his opponent against the wall, inflicting massive damage, and then using his signature guarding and sharpening to win the championship!

This was the final round, no matter if you cried or laughed!
After a last-ditch defense, Pai's back-flip leg exploded!
The winner is "Akatan Wasapo"!

The winner is "Akadan Wasapo"!

The winner, Akatan Wawapo (left)
Saiga NAK

The winner of the tournament received a professional license, a trophy, and the in-game title of " Star Player "!
Congratulations to Akadan Wasupo!

The runner-up, Balgo, also received a professional license and a trophy.

Akatan Wawapo (left), the winner of the competition.
Saiga NAK

Virtua Fighter merchandise from AMNIBUS!

The goods include shower sandals (3,850 yen including tax ) with an illustration of Pai's "back-flip leg" that won the championship for Wrigapo, and a hoodie (10,780 yen including tax) with an illustration of Virtua Fighter 1. The order is scheduled to start in July!
We hope Wrigapo will love his shower sandals!

Interviews with the winners and runners-up of the FREE division

-Please tell us how you feel now.

Akatan Wrigapo: I really didn't think I could win, and I was so mentally weak that I was nervous all week, but I'm glad I was able to play a game that everyone was satisfied with.
I think it was good that I was able to make a little poke at the very end, just like me.
I am really happy to have won.

-Why did you pick "El Blaze" for the main event?

Akatan WAISEPO: Since this is an esports game, I wanted to show a variety of characters among the players.
I was sad that Mr. Blaze was not able to play as well as he could have because of the seriousness of the Bargo player, but I hope that everyone will use a variety of characters from now on.

-What is the charm of "Pi"?

Akatan WAISAPO: Pai is cute, but she is also a good character that reflects the player's skill.
If you can use Pai, you can use other characters.

-How did you like this tournament?

Akatan WAIPO: I haven't been playing the game much for myself, and this time I came here because I heard people who have been helping me say they wanted me to participate in the tournament, so I am really happy to have made it.
I hope I can continue to help people enjoy Virtua Fighter and help them find their way around the game.
I will keep working hard!

Vargo: After participating in the tournament, I feel like I've finally been able to pick up the slack.
I had a player (Tonchan) who was a bit difficult to beat, and he lost in the middle of the tournament, so I thought, "This is the only chance I have! If I miss it today, I can't do it! I was very focused.

-The excitement after the "Headless Rider" vs.

Balgo: The video has been spreading on Twitter. It was very embarrassing.
You never know what will happen in a tournament, so I'm glad I got my pro license even though I was the runner-up.

Tweets on the topic

Tell us about Ton-chan.

Vargo: If I played Ton-chan three rounds ahead, I think I would have about a 3% chance of winning.
With the way he played today, I thought he would never win.
If I was on the opposite side (of the tournament), I thought I had a chance to get a professional license, but since we were on the same side, I thought Ton-chan would advance 80%.
Since (Tonchan) was eliminated in the middle of the tournament, I put everything I had into the remaining matches.

-Have you been practicing for today?

Balgo: I couldn't go to the arcade much due to work, but I made sure to go to the arcade on the days I could, and I also went to events in Akiba and tried to play as much as I could.
Even yesterday, I spent a few hours at the arcade and did what I had to do.

Akadanwakapo: I also spent a lot of time at the arcade and at home in the last week or so, losing to opponents I usually don't win against, and I was feeling strong while losing my mentality.
The rest of the week I went to a hot spring and recovered my mentality.
I think I was lucky to win in such a place.

-Do you often practice offline?

Balgo: I have been preparing for today by practicing offline at a game center where today's finalists also come to play and have friendly competitions.
I often go to Mikado in Ikebukuro for game center.

Akatan WAISAPO: When I said, "Let's go to Mikado today," it was like a big rush of people gathered there.

-Is there a reason why the name "Balgo" was changed from "Balgo's Jean" to "Balgo" this time?

Balgo : I wasn't sure about it, but since we started esports, we have "XXX player" after our name, and "Balgo" is easier to call, and it's easier to say "Jean of Balgo! I thought it was not a good word to say, "Jean the Balgo player!
I thought it would sound better in a Game Center play-by-play, "Jean of Balgo is XXX! would have sounded better in a video arcade game.

-What was the last move you were going to do?

Akatan Wasabo: I was going to do a "backward K," but I was so nervous that I did a "left backward K." It was very awkward.
Even at the moment I won, I thought, "Don't film me!
I was so nervous that I did the "left backward K" (backward K), which was very embarrassing.

-What is the style of play you would like to show us after becoming a pro?

Balgo: I play in a standard way, so I want to be a reference for people who play with Jean.

Akatan WAISAPO: My strength is defense, so I want to show that I can defend myself no matter what I use.
I would like to teach people how to defend against attacks in the video distribution and other media.

The " VIRTUA FIGHTER esports CHALLENGE CUP SEASON_1 [1st] FINAL " ended with great excitement.
The players, who usually look mild-mannered, were serious when it came to the games, and I could feel their spirit of aiming for victory.
And after the tournament, the feeling of "I want to play Virtua! I want to play Virtua!
Needless to say, I don't need to tell you what I did when I got home.

After the tournament, in-game professional titles were also implemented for players who accepted their professional licenses.
We look forward to seeing what they can do as professional Virtua Fighter esports players in the future!


Sorry, this article is only available in Japanese. at the moment.