Major League Gaming’s first ever event kicked off in New York City. Tournaments were held for a variety of games, but the jewel of the event was Halo: CE. The best Halo team in the world at the time was The Dream Team, made up of Zyos, Alex, Shizz and the legendary Darkman. They attended and won the event, playing as MLG’s first signed Pro Players.
Philly – Event #2
MLG brought new talent to the team, hiring now-VP of League Operations Adam Apicella and Head of Halo, and Manager of Promotions Chris Puckett to run the biggest Halo event ever up to that point. With the new staff and the boom of new Halo players attending, MLG had an amazing event culminating with the first major tournament victory for the Ogre twins and their team StK.
Dallas – Event #3
MLG ran the only major 3v3 national Halo tournament in this city, and had great success. StK returned, with StrangePurple playing alongside OGRE 1 and OGRE 2 to win their second event of the season and make them the team to beat.
Chicago – Event #4
Major League Gaming expanded going into Chicago, adding Super Smash Brothers Melee as their second permanent game to the tour. The event was a huge success thanks to the presence of Ken, America’s #1 Smash player in the world and his Teams partner Isai and a big turnout from the local Midwestern Smashers. Halo fans received a huge surprise as well. Team FFA, made up of Zyos, Walshy, KillerN and Gintron, was assembled for the purpose of defeating the dominant StK and succeeded in their goal, ousting them in both the Winners Finals and the Championship match. This event also marked the addition of Smash Coordinator Jason Rice (now Senior Staff Writer) and League Commissioner John Nelson (Anakin) to the MLG team.
Atlanta – Event #5
Video on Demand made its debut in Atlanta and was immediately a smash hit. Hundreds of Halo fans all over the country tuned in to watch the rematch between StK and FFA. Despite many fans predicting that they could not win again after losing to StK in the Winners Finals, Team FFA staged a comeback, returning from the Losers Bracket to win the Championship match and take home a set of sweet life-sized Master Chief helmets along with their first place check. Smash had an excellent turnout as well down in the South, with Azen defeating all challengers to take first place.
Seattle – Event #6
Going into Seattle, the Ogre twins from StK joined forced with Walshy and KillerN from FFA to form Team Domination and win the event. On the Smash side of things, a local Falco player named Rori took home first place, defeating eventual MLG Staffer Jv3x3 in an exciting Finals match. But the story of Seattle was not the formation of the most dominant team in Halo or the intense Smash Finals, but rather the fact that the very first Halo 2 tournament was run here. Bungie came out to the event and brought some test copies of Halo 2 with them so that a combination of pro players, MLG staff and top performers from the tournament could play in a 5v5 competition to win some sweet Bungie swag.
San Francisco – Event #7
With Team Domination absent from the event, and the Capture the Flag-only format, San Francisco was up for grabs for any of the solid teams in attendance to win. In the end, team YES!!, comprised of Zyos, Tsquared, Scythe and Slim defeated all opponents and took first place. This was also the first MLG event for eventual-pros Captain Anarchy, Fonzi and Foulacy. Meanwhile, the Smashers in attendance were all excited for a chance to play against Japanese champion Captain Jack, who defeated Isai in the Finals to take first place.
Los Angeles – Event #8
MLG continued its tour of the West Coast by heading next to Los Angeles. StrangePurple, Nistic, Saiyan and Sergio teamed up as A Business Decision to win the event, edging out Zyos’ MVPs Unite in the finals. SSBM had its biggest event yet, with nearly 100 players attending, including Ken and his entire crew of SoCal players.
Boston – Event #9
The Chargers, consisting of Tupac, Saiyan, Toxin and KillerN powered into Boston and came away with first prize, atop of one of the better Halo turnouts of the entire season. Azen regained his title in Smash, defeating Wes in the Finals and winning with Wes as his teammate in the Smash 2v2s. With the points tallied and the stage set, the players were prepared for the Championships in New York.
New York Championships – Event #10
With only those players who had earned invites present, the top Halo: CE and SSBM players in the country crowded into a sound stage in New York City. After a series of amazing FFA matches, Zyos and OGRE 2 worked their way towards each other in the 1v1 brackets, meeting in the Finals. Their final game on Prisoner was one of the greatest matches ever over the course of Halo: CE, with Zyos winning in the end. Team Domination made their triumphant and emphatic return to MLG by cruising through the 4v4 brackets and taking home first prize. For SSBM, Ken proved himself to be the best player in the world, defeating all American challengers as well as Japan’s #1 player, Captain Jack.