DIE - A Celebration of Life with Yeah, I Gotcha
How a Community Came Together to DIE
Greetings friends! As many of you know, us here at Yeah, I Gotcha just finished running DIE, our biggest, baddest, and most movie-like tournament to date! Each Yeah, I Gotcha regional is a labor of love and a celebration of the games associated with Yeah, I Gotcha culture, both old and new. The events are always the result of multiple community members putting in a lot of effort, and DIE was no different. However as some are aware, DIE was faced with a big hardship in the form of a last minute venue change. Because I can, I would like to just talk about DIE, the games, the event, and how the community helped save DIE from dying and turning it into one of my personal favorite tournaments, a big motivator for the future, and reminder of what the community stands for.
When selecting games for DIE we started out thought of games that represented Yeah, I Gotcha and our rich history. BlazBlue: Central Fiction turned into a hit, years after it's release and even got it's big resurgence in the scene before rollback was announced. Melty Blood Actress Again Current Code is one of, if not the #1 powerhouse game Yeah, I Gotcha excels in. While the game is much older than this, many of us adopted the game around 2019, and with help from our mentor Hatharo, we turned into one of the biggest threats known to lfg-na.
Guilty Gear Xrd is perhaps THE game that helped kick start Yeah, I Gotcha. We were formerly known as Air Dash Academy, where we had locals in a coffee shop hosted by the legendary Jay/Zeidust. We have since moved on from humble beginnings but we will never forget our roots! Ultimate Marvel vs. Capcom 3 is my first and personal favorite fighting game of all time. While I started playing it in 2011, it took years for it to take off at Yeah, I Gotcha. I have fond memories of our Umvc3 scene for a while just being myself and dadmad, who was brave enough to enter the world of Marvel 3. Since then we've grown Umvc3 into one of our biggest games, and for each regional we've had a very high level of talent coming all the way to Ohio just for our event!
Despite being the most mainstream title, Street Fighter 6 ironically seems like it doesn't fit in with the rest of the roster, but the dedication I've seen from the community shows it definitely has a place among the silly anime fighters we also play. It's also brought a lot of the oldheads in the Cleveland FGC back, so that is very awesome. Guilty Gear Strive is a game I will be eternally grateful for. After starting locals post COVID, Strive has been a game that has done nothing but help breathe new life into the scene. From day one we've had a large influx of new players and regulars from Strive, and it's a game that continues to give great stories and introduce great people to the scene.
Things sadly did not go as planned however. After months of planning, preparation, and hype building from all parts of the community, five days before the tournament, circumstances arose causing us unable to use the original venue we planned to use. Trophies, medals, pot bonuses, and over 100 people pre-regged were close to being put in the dustbin. After going through a full day of hell and sadness, with four days remaining I sent out notices that DIE might have to be cancelled.
Immediately I received a wave of messages, of people saying they know of a venue that could house us, or people asking if there was anything they could do to help. Before sending out that message I was honestly at my lowest point as a TO, but the spirit bomb of messages and support truthfully acted as a great motivator to make this event happen for the community. One of these messages was from none other than THE Corjam, the guy who made this website lol.
He offered to talk to the people at the University of Akron esports to see if we could host there, and miraculously, DIE was planned right when the venue would be available. After negotiations, the YIG team had only a couple of hours in one night to get the venue ready. Going over space concerns, getting setups ready, stream station, and more in a venue almost an hour from the original. With multiple last minute changes and on the spot decisions, DIE was ready to be ran on January 6th at the University of Akron Esports Center.
As for the event itself, there really is not much to say. With only a few hitches on the day of the tournament DIE was successfully ran with six tournaments totaling 100+ players from eight states. For a lot of us, this was the hardest event we've had to host, but with great hardship comes greater satisfaction. All through the day I had people from all over telling me how much fun they were having and how happy they were that the event was to go on. Telling me how much the community means to them and they were having a great time meeting new people as well. There was for a moment a time when I was under a good deal of stress, but all the positive comments unironically gave me a ton of energy and even before the event was over I was already looking forward to the next one.
None of this would have happened with the community. Without the help of Corjam securing a new venue, without Nate and Hunter at Akron University graciously letting us use their space (for free btw), for our volunteer team of streamers, bracket runners, and assistants who had to come up with a new plan and adapt on the fly, and for the players who now had to adjust their commute but still lend their good vibes to the event. As I stated earlier, when I came to realize we couldn't host DIE at our previous venue I was at my lowest point as a TO, really thinking we were just going to have to cancel and have that be that. Thankfully we have a community full of badasses who were NOT going to let that happen, and they slapped the sardines out of me realizing there is A LOT more to this event than I thought.
On January 6th, 2024, we DIEd, and in the future we are going to DIE some more. 2024 has already proven itself to be a new year with new challenges for YIG, but if DIE has shown anything, it's that the community we've built together is able to overcome any buttcrap ass bullcrap that comes in our way, and truly nothing can keep us apart. This whole ordeal has been a black could with a silver lining that has been overtaking the darkness and is going to lead into the next chapter of what Yeah, I Gotcha has to offer.
Thank you again to the wonderful community at Yeah, I Gotcha, OhioFGC, Kent, Akron, Toledo, Columbus, Michigan, and those from parts unknown who had us all come together to DIE.
If you missed out, watch the vod for DIE right here: https://www.twitch.tv/videos/2024636006