Jenny Vuong / Fri 13th Oct 2017
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Nintendo held the 2017 Nintendo World Championships a few days ago in New York City. After four hours and 24 competitors, Thomas Gonda from Oakland, California was crowned the winner of the World Championships. The 21-year-old, who also goes by the handle 'Ito', was presented with a golden Mario trophy in recognition of his achievement.
Hosted by gaming personality Andrea Rene as well as various members from Nintendo's Treehouse offering additional commentary, competitors had to beat each other in popular Nintendo titles from the last 30 years. Sixteen of the competitors won their spot in the tournament from local qualifying rounds held at various Best Buy retail locations. Recent systems like the Nintendo Switch, Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo Wii may have been more accessible to participants, but we really admire Gonda for mastering games on the Nintendo Entertainment System, Nintendo 64 and Gameboy Colour. These consoles are obviously very difficult to find still in working order.
Events that players had to compete in included surfing in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, sandbag beating in Super Smash Bros., as well as racing in both Metroid: Samus Returns and Donkey Kong Country Returns. Our 2017 champion had struggled throughout the contest and battled with the runner-up for the 2017 Nintendo World Championships and former Nintendo World Champion, John Numbers.
After skipping 2016, the Nintendo World Championships returned in time for the upcoming release of Super Mario Odyssey (October 27), which was reserved for the final round between Thomas Gonda and John Numbers. Nintendo is said to use the World Championships to give gamers a look at new titles. 2015 showcased Super Mario Maker which was this year kept for the semi-final round.
"We congratulate Thomas Gonda on his victory tonight. Nintendo World Championships 2017 showcases the best competitive spirit and sportsmanship of the Nintendo fan community," said Doug Bowser, Nintendo of America's Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing. "Whether players compete on a global stage or with friends and family members in the living room or on the go, Nintendo games always deliver fun times and big smiles."
We hope the competition returns in 2018!