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    Winter Brawl 11, one of Pokkén's major tournaments for the start of 2017, took place last month. The event featured Wesley "Cat Fight" Garland, Christian "Suicune Master" Patierno, Alex "AngelDarksong" Stopher and more, as well as some fantastic Pokkén gameplay.
    Reactor and Pokkén YouTuber Ryan "Uchi" Rojas released a March 2017 community video featuring pictures and videos from the event. The video does an excellent job of showcasing the Pokkén community's passion and love for both the game and each other.
    When asked if there was anything he wanted to say regarding the video and the community, Uchi was quick to express his appreciation for the Pokkén community.
    "First off, I'd like to say that this is the best community I've ever been involved with and I can't stress enough [how] amazing it really is. The community is welcoming and supportive to the point where it feels like a second family. Fortunately enough, with the help of a couple others, I was able to capture glimpses of how unified we are to show the world. It's [an] honor to do this, and I plan on doing much more for this community. I love Pokkén!"
    If you want Uchi to make more videos like this, let him know on his YouTube and Twitter.

    Canadian eSports organization SetToDestroyX announced their acquisition of Allister "ALLISTER" Singh last night. The announcement marks STDx's first venture into the Pokkén Tournament scene.
    Considered one of the world's best Suicune players and a leader in the Pokkén community, ALLISTER has been a notable player since Pokkén's early days. On top of impressive results at Let it Shine III, NEC 2017 and more, ALLISTER also has a strong presence online. His Twitch channel was the first Pokkén-focused channel to pass 1,000 followers thanks to his generous and excitable personality as well as his skills in the game. ALLISTER also moderates many of Pokkén's online communities, including the /r/PokkenGame Discord server and this site, Pokkén Arena. The STDx announcement came on the heels of the Operation: Synergy announcement and on the same day as ALLISTER's 25th birthday.
    You can find STDx's official press release here, and you can see ALLISTER representing the organization at Final Round 20 next week. Hopefully this announcement will bring forth a surge of new Pokkén signings!
    You can follow ALLISTER here, and SetToDestroyX here.

    Community leaders Allister "ALLISTER" Singh and Brendan "Burnside" Hansen have recently announced Operation: Synergy - a community campaign to encourage continued developer support for the Wii U version of Pokkén Tournament.
    The campaign involves fans writing and sending physical letters to The Pokémon Company International. The letters will address the community's concerns regarding the Wii U version of Pokkén - specifically the lack of DLC and the latest balance patches. Every person sending a letter is asked to send their letter on a specific date, which will result in The Pokémon Company receiving a plethora of letters all at once.
    Operation Rainfall: A Success Story
    This is not the first time there has been a campaign like this. Operation Rainfall was a fan campaign that pushed for the localization of Xenoblade Chronicles, The Last Story, and Pandora's Tower - three Japan-exclusive titles for the Nintendo Wii. Involving letters, emails, Facebook messages, and Tweets to Nintendo of America, the campaign received support from numerous gaming and news sites. Nintendo acknowledged Operation Rainfall, commending the fans' dedication, and eventually all three titles were released in North America - making Operation Rainfall a success.

    Operation: Synergy
    The name for Operation: Synergy has a couple meanings. Obviously, there is the reference to Pokkén's Synergy Burst mechanic, but the name goes deeper than that. Operation: Synergy will only experience success if the entire community works together - in Synergy. The plan for the campaign is for members of the community to write letters to The Pokémon Company regarding the Wii U version of Pokkén Tournament. These letters will all be sent on the same day in order to make the biggest impact. 

    This campaign will not succeed without the help of the entire Pokkén Tournament community. Whether you are young or old, North American or Japanese or European, your passion for Pokkén Tournament is imperative for this campaign's success. The community's passion proved successful in the Evo Donation Drive, and Operation Rainfall is further proof that this campaign can be a success. For further information and to participate in Operation: Synergy directly, read the original post here.
    Now, all Operation: Synergy needs is you. Even if you are unable to submit letters, you can take part by spreading the word on social media, sending messages to The Pokémon Company, and using the hashtag #OperationSynergy. Together, let's make history.
    Learn more about Operation: Synergy here.
    Thanks to MajoraZ for the initial proposal, Quiet for the campaign's name, ALLISTER and Burnside for making the announcement, many others for giving feedback on the initial proposal, and the entire Pokkén community for being so passionate about the game.

    A new announcement on the official Pokémon website may have revealed some massive news for the Pokkén Tournament community.
    Earlier today, the locations and dates of the 2017 North American International Championships and 2017 World Championships were announced. One paragraph in this article talks specifically about Pokkén Tournament, and what it says may be the confirmation the community has been waiting for.
    While this is not a direct confirmation of anything, this paragraph seems to suggest two things:
    There will be a Last Chance Qualifier for Pokkén, meaning there has to be some sort of Season 2 to take up the initial seats. In other words, this may be confirmation that there will be a Season 2 competitive circuit for Pokkén Tournament. Players will be competing on the Wii U version. While this may not be a major surprise, it's possible that it confirms an update for the Wii U version.  
    When it was first announced that Pokkén would be at the 2017 World Championships, players wondered if arcade cabinets would be brought in in order to use the latest version. We now know that World Championships will be played using the Wii U version, which means there are two possibilities. Either Japanese arcade players will be forced to play on an old balance patch, or the Wii U version will be updated to match the arcade cabinets.
    Another important detail is the announcement that Pokkén will have a $20,000 prize pool at the 2017 Pokémon World Championships. Further proof that the game has not been entirely forgotten by The Pokémon Company!
    Again, this doesn't definitively confirm anything. Please continue to check Pokkén Arena for news on any official announcements.

    Winter Brawl 11 was a huge milestone for the Pokkén Community. It was a welcome celebration of this fantastic game by the FGC, and really opened some eyes as to where Pokkén stands as a competitive game. WB11 Pokkén was reigned in on the first day, Friday the 17th, with a thirty entrant single-elimination 2v2 bracket composed of fifteen different teams. It gave a good amount of entertainment to those who were tuning in, netting about 130 viewers peak and some good discussion from within the own community.
    The favorites to win the bracket were team Christian & Wesley, composed of Suicune Master and CatFight, yet seeding differed quite far from the actual results. The somehow bottom seed for the bracket, Rokso the Guitarist—a team composed of RoksoTheSavage and Soul Guitarist—slayed, flayed, and shredded in the 2v2 format destroying the competition in their path all the way to Grand Finals where they fought the seventh seed, who had their own bizarre journey to grands. The seventh seed for this bracket, a dangerous duo of underestimation, Madluk and Rasenryu, entered under the name LowTierGod, as an homage to the infamous heel of the FGC himself. They ended up even knocking out team Brocooli Sucks, Brocooli and Twixxie, who ended up knocking out Christian and Wesley in Round 2. It was an exciting bracket, but in the end, LowTierGod ended up taking it over RoksoTheGuitarist in Grands.

    Starting on day two, new talent and old faced off in an 83 entrant singles bracket separated into eight pools. The matches were intense, throughout. Enough so that people from other games began to realize that Pokkén Tournament was more than the momentum they had in the PokkénEvo drives—it’s a loud, strong, and thriving community that loves their game.
    The excitement was incredible. Top 16 surprised so many people, seeing names that haven’t graced our highlights before. KOA| Sandman, McCent252, and several others impressed the Pokkén Community by placing so high in such a stacked event. NGI|AngelDarkSong shone for the first time in the states as well with his stellar performance. Top cut veterans as well took to the spotlight including Cat Fight, Rasenryu, BadIntent, Brocooli, Madluk, Burnside, HBA|RoksoTheSavage, H2, and Cloud. Some other players made themselves stand out even more at this event, such as McDareth, Twixxie, and HBA|DjWhiteyWhite three well-known players that were able to break through into their first top-placings at a large event. There was also one more player, a black sheep, whom stood out in that bracket, a mysterious entrant by the name of Ling Ling. It turns out the renowned Suicune Master decided to enter the singles bracket under a new alias, Ling Ling. Whether this is a permanent change or a simple joke entry is yet to be known.

    Top 16 was a warzone of upsets. Of the most notable was NGI|AngelDarkSong, the UK Blaziken, who made his first appearance in US brackets, knocking Ling Ling into losers. This could only be described as a battle of extremes. There were times in which NGI|AngelDarkSong was near perfecting Ling Ling, and there were times where in turn Ling Ling perfected NGI|AngelDarkSong. Similar upsets occurred between the HBA family, as DjWhiteyWhite had to take out one of his hardest challenges from back home, RoksoTheSavage. It was an emotional top cut, and despite all of these players earning their right to be on that main stage, only one could leave the Winter Brawl 11 Champion.
    Ling Ling vs Cat Fight, the culmination of the best of the best in this bracket. These two competitors have fought each other many times before in bracket. At Defend the North, they met in Winners Finals. At Rumble in the Tundra 6, they met in Winners Finals. In both of these situations, Suicune Master took it over Cat Fight, and they did not meet again in Grands. This time was different in every way. Cat Fight didn’t have to meet Suicune Master in Winners Finals this time, as the aforementioned upset put him into Loser’s. This gave Catfight the security of both sets of Grand Finals to adapt to what Suicune Ma—I mean, Ling Ling had to dish out. The set was close, and there were sometimes where it really seemed like Cat Fight wasn’t going to be able to pull through (I have to know why he had so much trouble countering those blizzards). However, by the chants of, “Fight Cat Fight!” from the crowd, and the sheer will to win, Cat Fight pulled through winning his first Major since Apex 2016. Good job, Cat.
    Many of the matches during this bracket told stories, and the stories they told inspired not only the audience, but the venue to turn their eyes brightly towards the world of Pokkén. The next event we’re looking towards is Final Round, and while it may be named Final Round, it’s only the beginning of a brand new year second year of Pokkén.

    Arcade versions of Pokkén Tournament were updated to Ver.G08 last week, bringing changes to both Fighter and Support Pokémon. Not only does this update buff and nerf moves, it also gives some characters entirely new moves and charge/cancel options.
    Since there is no news of a Wii U release just yet, the rest of the world needs to look to Japan for a glimpse of this new update. Luckily for us, Japanese Pikachu player ENGINE has released nearly 40 minutes of Ver.G08 Pikachu gameplay. ENGINE goes up against other characters including Scizor and Mewtwo, so viewers also get a chance to see some of the changes for other characters.
    Be sure to follow ENGINE if you enjoy his video, and keep checking Pokkén Arena for news on when this update will come to the Wii U!

    Final Round 20 takes place next month, and the event will be home to Pokkén Battle Revolution - a tournament celebrating the Wii U version's one-year anniversary. Some of the world's best players will be in attendance, and there are a variety of community events being planned to draw in new entrants.
    To start, a donation drive has been started to help increase Pokkén's prize pot.
    If you choose to order an item from the donation drive, the necessary costs to make the item will be subtracted from your donation. From there, all remaining money will go straight into the tournament's prize pot. The items will be delivered at Final Round, so if you aren't attending the event but you want to make an order be sure to send Fumu a message inquiring.
    The available items are as follows:
    $5: Wristband and sticker $20: Pokkén Battle Revolution t-shirt $25: T-shirt, wristband, and sticker $30: Pokkén Tournament poster made by Arkayne (Preview) $50: Pokkén Packed Package (T-shirt, poster, wristband, and sticker) $100: HORI Pokkén controller signed by top players  
    Click here for more information and to donate.
    There are also community events being planned for during the actual tournament. The legendary Suicune player Allister will be running a side event during the tournament titled "Wheel of Death".
    Allister will have a wheel that participants can spin. There are six possible categories that will determine how the next match is played:
    Blind Fury: Both players play blindfolded. The Third Dimension: Players switch seats and play using their opponent's monitor. Double Trouble: Each player picks a partner, and each partner controls half of the controller. Dexterity of Doom: Each player plays with one hand Death Wish: Players pick their opponent's Fighter Pokémon, Support Pokémon, and Cheer Skill. Inescapable Fate of Infinity's End: Players set their opponent's control scheme without preview.  
    The Wheel of Death will be a Best-of-1, Double Elimination tournament. First place will receive a custom trophy.
    Click here to register for Pokkén Battle Revolution, and check back here for updates on more community events.
    Thanks to Fumu for organizing the donation drive, and Allister for hosting the Wheel of Death!

    Along with the announcement that Pokkén would be returning to the Pokémon World Championships this year, it was revealed that the arcade version of Pokkén Tournament will be receiving a new balance patch on February 14th. This balance patch will feature a variety of changes for both Fighter and Support Pokémon, including adding new moves to some Fighters. There is no word on whether or not this patch will come to the Wii U version at this time.
    Thanks to Pentao, we now have the full translated patch notes. Keep in mind these are not official translations, so if you spot any mistakes please let us know.
    Buffs Nerfs Adjustments Bug Fixes  
    We will report any updates as they come, so please stay tuned.

    During the 2 on 2 tournament at yesterday's Tokaigi Game Party, Pokkén Tournament Producer Masaaki Hoshino announced that the game would be returning to the Pokémon World Championships this year.
    This was also confirmed after the event on the official Pokkén Twitter:
    Qualification methods have not yet been confirmed, but we will deliver more information as it becomes available.
    A balance patch for the arcade version of the game was also announced. This patch will bring a variety of changes to both Fighter and Support Pokémon, and will release on February 14th in Japan. At the moment, no announcements have been made regarding the Wii U version of the game.
    We will deliver more information as it comes. Please stay tuned.

    Update: NicoNico has updated the start time for this event. It appears the 2 on 2 tournament will begin Saturday, February 11th at 9:00 PM EST.
    Tokaigi Game Party, a gaming convention in Japan, will be taking place this weekend.
    The convention will feature a 2 on 2 tournament for Pokkén, and some of Japan's best players will be participating. It's also worth noting that Pokkén Tournament Producer Masaaki Hoshino will be in attendance. While this may not lead to anything, keep in mind that Corrin and Bayonetta were showcased for Smash Wii U last year, a month before they were released (Edit: @Mins also pointed out that Chandelure and Shadow Mewtwo being playable were both announced at the last Tokaigi). This means there is the possibility of a Pokkén DLC announcement this weekend - or perhaps even the announcement of a Switch port.
    The 2 on 2 tournament will begin on February 11th, 2017 at 9:00 PM EST. The details are as follows:
    The tournament will be played on the Arcade version of Pokkén Tournament. Darkrai, Scizor, Croagunk, and Empoleon are allowed. Team members may not use the same Battle Pokémon. Support Pokémon may be changed after a match. Waseda format: Each team member plays an opponent of the opposing team. If each team wins one game, the two players who won will face off. Random Stages. Skill Points enabled.  
    You will be able to watch the Tokaigi 2 on 2 tournament here. You can see the list of participants here.
    Thanks to Pentao for translating the information, and BUGlitch for the list of participants!