Lineup for #EVOJAPAN2019 has been announced!

Today, EVO announced the complete lineup for its Japanese counterpart, EVO Japan 2019.

Six games in total will be supported for the duration of a three-day weekend in the Fukuoka Kokusai Center. Furthermore, EVO Japan will take a page from the book of its 2018 debut by carrying over its support for side tournaments.

The competition goes fierce on February 15-17, 2019. Below is the full list of games that will be supported at EVO Japan:

  • Street Fighter V Arcade Edition

  • Tekken 7

  • Guilty Gear XRD Revelator 2

  • Blazblue Cross Tag Battle

  • Soul Calibur VI

  • The King of Fighters XIV

However, the fighting game community has been quick to notice the absence of two titles from the lineup: Super Smash Bros Ultimate and Dragonball FighterZ. The latter title became the highlight of Evolution 2018 this past August as it attracted more players than all other games included, even Street Fighter V.

As the Top 8 finals for DBFZ ran their course at EVO, its live-stream became the most watched channel on August 5th, 2018, thus propelling DBFZ to the status of the most viewed game that same day. For a title from the fighting game genre, this achievement attracted an understandable amount of attention.

Given how the Twitter post above was worded, it’s shocking that Dragonball FighterZ will not be given its spotlight at EVO Japan this year. The lack of Smash Ultimate is equally confusing, as last year’s EVO Japan in Tokyo had included its predecessor, Super Smash Bros Wii-U.

The reason for their absence? While no statement has been provided by either Bandai Namco or Nintendo, rumors indicate that both of them were in disapproval of the idea that their titles should be included in EVO Japan 2019.

If the above is true, this closely echoes a similar circumstance in which Nintendo originally attempted to dissuade the EVO team from running Smash Melee for its 2013 incarnation. Shortly thereafter, Nintendo was swamped by extreme criticism from their fanbase and quickly rescinded their decision, allowing EVO 2013 to proceed with their Melee tournament in which 709 players would participate.

So assuming the rumors are correct, what would tip Nintendo back towards their initial stance? And what of Bandai Namco? Will side tournaments for both Smash Ultimate and DBFZ still be a possibility, unlikely as it is at this stage?

Registration for EVO Japan 2019 will be opened in the near future. Follow @EVO and @EVOJapanNews for updates!

JagoBlake, the author of this article, is an esports enthusiast who just so happens to have a way with words. Whenever he is not scouring the Internet in pursuit of breaking news, he's investing time into his favorite fighting games so as not to appear inadequate in the face of competition. To support his work, follow him on Twitter - @xJagoBlake.

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