In video gaming final, stick malfunction, then show of sportsmanship

At EVO 2015, a busted joystick almost cost Momochi in the Street Fighter IV final.

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Goodness, gracious, great balls of hadouken!

On Sunday at the Evolution Championship Series in Las Vegas — or EVO 2015, as it’s known among gaming aficionados — the final match of the Street Fighter IV tournament featured an unprecedented interruption.

Remember when the lights went out during the Super Bowl between the Ravens and 49ers? This was sort of like that, except if it had happened in the fourth quarter in the middle of a drive for the go-ahead touchdown.

The final pitted Japan’s Yusuke Momochi against Taiwan’s Bruce Hsiang, known as GamerBee. Momochi had won Round 1 in the best-of-three-rounds match, but he suddenly paused in Round 2. Of all things, Momochi’s controller had stopped working.

By rule, that gave Round 2 to GamerBee. He apparently also could have been a stickler and won the match essentially by forfeit. Instead, GamerBee let the second round time run down and then waited until Momochi got a new joystick.

Here’s how part of the EVO rules read (via Kotaku):

New equipment must be immediately available. If replacement equipment cannot be obtained in a timely manner, the player must continue to play on their current equipment or forfeit the Match.

But GamerBee let his opponent get up and running again. And then … Momochi won Round 3 to take the championship.

In Street Fighter IV, there are no bonus points for sportsmanship. But what do you expect from a fighting game with a character named Evil Ryu?

Momochi won over $33,000 for his victory, with GamerBee taking home nearly $14,500.

And here’s the kicker: Momochi also received a golden joystick.

You can see how this played out in the video below, including one of the announcers referring to Momochi’s "major stick malfunction" (in front of all those people — how embarrassing):