Combo Breaker 2021 canceled due to COVID-19, will be replaced by a ‘multi-day digital festival’

There will at least be some FGC content on Memorial Day Weekend this year.

Photo by Robert Paul via Combo Breaker

Combo Breaker, one of the biggest multi-game fighting game tournaments in the world, is already calling off its plans for a 2021 event due to the continued threat of the COVID-19 pandemic, the tournament organizer announced today.

The event usually takes place annually on Memorial Day Weekend, but this will be the second straight year where Combo Breaker won’t be a hub for fighting game players to gather and compete casually and at the highest level. 

“The ongoing impact of COVID-19 has made safely hosting an indoor event of Combo Breaker’s size impossible this May in Illinois; and Illinois is our home,” tournament organizer Rick “The Hadou” Thiher said. “Last year, when Combo Breaker was canceled for 2020, we believed we would be gathering together to play games again later this spring. To accept that life has other plans for us is deeply frustrating.”

As an update, any player who carried over their 2020 room reservations at the event-partnered Schaumburg Renaissance Hotel for the 2021 tournament has automatically had their reservation canceled and all deposits will be returned shortly. 

To keep the spirit of Combo Breaker alive, The Hadou is continuing a project that saw a little bit of time last year by creating content alongside the community. 

“In the past year, I’ve spoken to attendees, viewers, and staff about what Combo Breaker has meant to them,” The Hadou said. “These conversations have helped me believe that our team can offer more than just an offline event experience. Given that, we are going to try something new this year. Over Memorial Day Weekend 2021, we will be keeping the spirit of Combo Breaker alive with a multi-day digital festival.”

Until more details are available on that digital festival, The Hadou and all of the Combo Breaker team encourage players to continue playing the games they love. 

“We have a lot of work to do to bring our vision to life and we are looking forward to sharing it with you,” The Hadou said. “In the meantime, please play fighting games. Keep practicing. Enter online tournaments. Watch streams. Be active in community servers. Support one another. Know hope.”