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Combo Breaker Cancels Due to Coronavirus Threat

Dustin Steiner  | 
Combo Breaker

Combo Breaker has officially been canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Combo Breaker 2020 has officially been cancelled. The event was one of the premier events on the fighting game community calendar for many titles, most notably on the Capcom Pro Tour (which itself has delayed until at least July), Tekken World Tour, and other circuits.

“The COMBO BREAKER team is gutted to announce that, following government guidance and our own judgment regarding COVID-19, COMBO BREAKER 2020 is cancelled,” organizers said in a statement. “We recognize the significant impact this decision has on our attendees, partners, sponsors, staff, venue, and community, but believe it is currently the only move to make. May we collectively make it through this difficult time as passionately as when we all began.”

Combo Breaker’s cancellation plans includes refunds for all competitors and community pass refunds starting on April 20th. The Schaumburg Renaissance Marriott will be carrying forward reservations for the event into Combo Breaker 2021, but attendees can call and cancel if they wish to receive a refund on their rooms deposits.

Instead of the event, Combo Breaker will be partnering with various streamers to air a Combo Breaker retrospective featuring some of the best matches in the event’s history. Additionally, the event’s merch shop, which features some unique designs that were planned to be at the event, is online now and proceeds will go towards helping Combo Breaker recover losses from not being able to host the event.

Combo Breaker

The sale of planned merchandise will go to assisting in losses from not holding the event (Photo courtesy Combo Breaker)

The following items were added to directly support the event’s ability to continue next year:

  • 50-page Commemorative Magazine featuring articles, illustrations, photos, and interviews
  • COMBO BREAKER Arcade Token and protective case is available for $2, but also allows you to name your own price as part of an “In Us We Trust” support opportunity

Additionally, should attendees not want to receive their registration refund to help support Combo Breaker, they can contact @TheHadou on Twitter.

The effects of coronavirus on esports as a whole continue to be felt the world over as a massive shift is happening to continue business as usual online. Fighting games have been among the hardest hit by these events, namely because netcode and online infrastructure in the United States is not ideal for the split second reaction times required by fighting games. Combine this with a lack of infrastructure set up logistically for fighting games as most competition does not occur there, and you have a recipe for a scene basically at a standstill.

While some events have cropped up to attempt to fill the void online, the fighting game community will likely be attempting to recover from this pandemic for years to come.

Dustin Steiner
Dustin Steiner
Dustin Steiner is an esports and gaming journalist who has been covering fighting games and their competitive scene since 2011. You can follow his daily musings on the industry on Twitter @GetSteinered.