The stage is set, the fighters are ready, and the anticipation is palpable. EVO, the grandest fighting game tournament of them all, is making its triumphant return this July. Street Fighter, Tekken, and Mortal Kombat are prepared to take center stage, but there's one beloved brawler that has been missing in action: Super Smash Bros Ultimate.

It's been a few years since Smash graced the EVO arena. The last time it made an appearance was in 2019, when it stole the show and left a trail of broken controllers in its wake. The bracket was packed with fierce competitors, and in the end, it was the legendary MkLeo who emerged victorious, solidifying his place in gaming history.

Unfortunately, Nintendo decided to sit out EVO 2022, leaving a Smash-shaped void in the hearts of fans. But fear not, dear fighters, hope still lingers in the air. EVO's General Manager, Rick Thiher, remains optimistic that the iconic platform fighter will make a triumphant return.

In an exclusive interview with Dexerto, Thiher expressed his enthusiasm for the future of Smash at EVO. "Always happy to host Smash. Always happy to engage with that community," he joyfully proclaimed. The love for Smash is evident, and the desire to see it back in action is palpable.

Thiher, no stranger to working with Nintendo as the mastermind behind the Combo Breaker event, discussed the company's tournament guidelines. Initially met with resistance from the Smash community due to restrictions on tournament sizes and prize money, Nintendo's guidelines have since evolved. Many events have successfully obtained licenses, allowing them to sidestep these limitations.

"I was really excited to see parts of the Nintendo licensing program that has kind of stabilized in the last few months," Thiher shared. "We're seeing more and more licensed events out in the market for those titles. Don't know what the future holds today, and we will find out whenever it arrives."

So, while the path to Smash's return at EVO may not be immediate, a glimmer of hope remains. Perhaps it's not just Super Smash Bros Ultimate that will make a triumphant comeback, but the next installment in the franchise, currently brewing in the depths of game development, poised to take the world's biggest FGC spectacle by storm.

Picture this: the roaring crowd, their cheers echoing through the arena as the iconic characters of Smash clash in a vibrant display of color and chaos. Mario leaps gracefully through the air, dodging Samus's powerful blasts with acrobatic finesse. Meanwhile, Captain Falcon zooms across the stage, leaving a trail of fire in his wake, his signature "Falcon Punch" at the ready. It's a spectacle that brings fans from near and far, united in their love for this unique and electrifying experience.

So, fighters and fans alike, keep your spirits high and your fingers nimble. The return of Super Smash Bros to EVO may be just beyond the horizon, waiting to ignite the ultimate showdown. The battle isn't over yet, and the thrill of victory may soon be within our grasp.

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