Tue 17th May 2016 - 11:43pm



Why did you choose to show the ranking based on placings instead of the panelist ratings?

Smash 4 is a relatively young game with a constantly shifting competitive scene. For our first ranking we wanted to capture the players that have had consistency and solid results in the scene. Opinions can shift quickly but placings tell a story of a competitor. We do agree that the rating from top players from around the world should have weight, however, which is why we decided to show the X-factor. How you take the X-factor is up to you. Do you think a player isn’t as good as their actual placings? Or maybe a player that can’t travel is actually a hidden boss


Why Panda Global?

Panda Global was originally started by Smashers and one of our founding principles when we began the team was to help grow the games we're a part of, elevating them to the next level. We felt like #PGR is the next step in that direction for Smash 4 and was a natural fit for us.


Doesn't PG have a team? How could you be unbiased?

The PGstats team felt the pressure to be as unbiased as possible when crafting this list, and the team went through PG's own players with a fine tooth comb to make sure there was no unfair treatment. The rankings are objective and created equally between the players despite the team they play for.

What tournaments did you choose? Is “xyz tournament” included? Why not?

The tournaments we included were:

  • Apex 2015

  • CEO 2015

  • EVO 2015

  • Paragon LA

  • TBH5

  • Genesis 3

  • Pound 2016

  • Smash Factor 4

  • Super Smash Con

  • Umebura F.A.T.

  • Shots Fired 2

  • MLG World Finals (New Orleans)

  • PAX Prime

  • PAX Arena

  • B.E.A.S.T. 6

  • ESAM Saga

  • FOW Saga

  • Midwest Mayhem 2

  • New Fish

  • Fresh Saga

  • Misc. regionals

**bolded are majors

We determined that there are 3 tiers of tournaments - majors, nationals, and regionals. In order

  • Major, 500+ people with players from at least 5 regions or more and pronounced international talent. Genesis 3 would be an example, as well as EVO, with Florida, Tristate, Texas, Socal, etc  all being there as well as Mexico, Japan, and Europe all being present.

  • National: 128 - 400 people with players from various regions around the country, involving at least 3 regions or more, and some, but limited, international talent. An example would be Glitch with Florida, MD/VA, Tristate being present and limited international talent like Mr. R.

  • Super Regional: 128+  people with players from only one region, but involving all of its sub-regions such as Florida having Tampa Never Sleeps as it involved NFL, CFL, and SFL but no one mostly outside of Florida. It may involve an insignificant amount of outsiders, but consists mainly one region.

The tournament had to meet both the criteria of talent and number of attendants in order to be considered one of the 3 categories. For example, Shots Fired 2 had the talent, but not the number of attendants, 162, needed to be considered a major. And then SSC had the attendants, 700+, but not the talent to be considered a major since there was very limited international talent and only a few top players compared to the number of attendants.

If a particular tournament wasn’t included it was because it either:

  • Did not meet any of the above standards

  • Did not feature enough notable players such as those on the top 50

  • Did not have an online, reliable documentation

  • Did not feature a legal tournament format, which is any derivative of Apex, Evo, CEO etc.

Player xyz is amazing, why aren’t they featured in this list?

The initial list of players was larger than just 50 but was derived from going over the data from the healthy number of Smash 4 majors every 2-3 months since release. There is no player in the Top 50 that hasn’t been to at least one major, with players like Marss only being to only 2/7.

Even so, we know we aren’t perfect. We asked our panelists to write in any player that was not included on the survey who they feel should be in the rankings. We added these “write-ins” to the list and those that made the top 50 were included in the final list.

I don’t know about all of this, how can we be expected to accept this at face value?

Then check out our methods section! We painstakingly documented our methodology with full transparency so there is no question as to how this was created.

What were some of the challenges with making a top 50 list?

In terms of the evolution of this project, we were faced with categorizing the 50 best players in a competitive environment that is:

  • In a double elimination format

  • Limited by the amount of community-led events

  • Biased towards the western hemisphere

  • Impacted by patches on a 2-3 month basis

  • Affected by the release of DLC

  • Consistently changing rulesets

Due to the factors listed above, our research was limited by the parameters we set in the beginning and we tried our hardest to be as inclusive as possible. With scenes in all parts of the world such as the Middle East, Australia, and Europe with very limited international presence, we could not create any sort of basis by which to compare them to American, Mexican, or Japanese players since their interactions were so limited, which is why the tournaments are so skewed towards USA events which tend to have the most international attendance.






David Wu

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