This morning, one of the top players in the Super Smash Bros Melee esports scene, Michael “MikeHaze” Pulido, announced his retirement from the game due to a growing lack of interest.
The latest hit to the community comes as one of Smash Melee’s best players retires. A frequent top 10 finisher in tournaments, MikeHaze looks to retire because of growing dissatisfaction. In a TwitLonger post shared today, he spoke about his feelings and how competing is no longer the same for him. Despite his success as a strong player, he felt forced and now wants to be more honest about himself.
“Tournaments have always been really fun to attend,” MikeHaze said in his post. “They’re a great way for me to see friends and just get social interaction when i otherwise keep to myself, but i generally have felt extremely empty when it’s come to competition over the past few years. I’ve tried to force it, and there are times when i am genuinely enjoying it, but the upkeep and time commitment required to be the best just doesn’t appeal to me anymore.”
Michael stated that he is parting ways with his team, Chaos Esports Club, and wants to focus on self-growth instead. Though he recognizes he could continue as an esports player in Smash Melee, he knows it would be unfair to both the team and himself. Chaos Esports Club signed MikeHaze to their organization early last year and they will part ways.
While the player continued to play well under the team, things never worked as planned due to the global pandemic. In his farewell post, Michael stated that he will look to focus on poker and his music instead. He’s already been publishing his own music, including his new album, Opaque.
Although some events like the Ludwig Ahgren Championship Series 3 succeeded, many didn’t even take place. Smash Melee struggles without a developer supported online scene, leading to in-person competitive events. But due to COVID-19, LAN events are mostly banned and the Smash scene is struggling. Nintendo refuses to support the game and its community, leading fans to take matters into their own hands. Nintendo even canceled The Big House, one of Super Smash Bros’ most iconic tournaments, due to disagreements over software.
While nobody knows what will occur next in the competitive scene, fans are worried. MikeHaze’s retirement from Smash Melee is a big blow. Thankfully, since the resilient community kept an outdated game active for this long, this definitely isn’t the end. Those who want to support MikeHaze can find his music online.
Written by Justin Amin
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