801 Strider joins Winterfox
Romero is no stranger to the fighting game scene. He has been among the more prominent names in North America for some time, establishing himself as arguably the region’s premier Abel player in Street Fighter 4.
But this year, Romero has broken through to a new level of play. He's become a consistent threat at big international tournaments, including last month’s CEO event where he finished as runner-up. His run through the tournament included victories over big-name opponents, including Daigo Umehara, Eduardo “PR Balrog” Perez and Kenryo “Mago” Hayashi.
A collection of victories like that isn’t easy. When he's on, Romero’s tricky Abel play is consistently able to keep opponents off balance, which you can see first-hand in a welcome video Winterfox assembled.
Romero took to social media to express appreciation for the community.
Thanks for the support guys! This has definitely made me hungrier as a player, I expect to see myself grow and improve as time goes by.
— Gustavo Romero (@801_Gustavo) July 14, 2015
He’ll soon have an opportunity to further prove himself, as the world’s biggest fighting games event, Evo, gets underway on July 17. Romero is on an unquestionable hot streak headed into this year’s competition, but nothing is guaranteed on the biggest stage in the scene.
Romero's move also speaks to the further entrenchment of fighting games in the esports scene. Much attention has gone to the Smash Bros. scene, which has seen a number of its best players join esports organizations. But more players like Romero can expect to make the jump in the coming months as Capcom and Sony continue to build up towards next year’s Street Fighter 5 through financial support of the series’ competitive scene.