Jason ‘Mew2King’ Zimmerman explained how a single frame cost Zain ‘Zain’ Naghmi winning Smash Summit 11, as he lost to Joseph ‘Mang0’ Marquez in heartbreaking fashion.
Smash Summitt 11 ended in epic fashion as Mang0 defeated Zain through the losers bracket, staging an insane comeback that was one for the history books. After being down 0-2, Mang0 reversed swept Zain to become Smash Summitt champion.
The tournament had the largest prize pool in competitive Melee history at $155,640. Mang0 walked away with the first-place prize of $46,692.
The ending of the tournament was a frantic scene. It all came down to the last stock between the players in game five of the second set between them, and Mang0 clutched it out.
Mew2King explains how Mang0 won
Days after the tournament, Mew2King took to his stream to break down the final moments of Smash Summitt 11.
As Mang0 playing Fox landed at the top of the Battlefield stage, Zain, who’s playing Marth, went for an up-air attack to punish Mang0’s vulnerable position.
Mew2King says “This was one frame off from hitting. This one frame changed the tournament. Zain being one frame late here changed the tournament.”
Had Zain up-aired a single frame earlier, Mang0 would not have been able to shield and been hit. The attack doesn’t land as Mang0 shields it and in return knocks Zain off the stage, winning the tournament.
Mew2King took the comment section of the original Reddit post for this clip, explaining, “I actually figured out all of this frame data stuff (techs being 1-20 invin, 21-26 vulnerable for in place and missed tech and 21-40 vulnerable for tech roll) with pause tests in 2003, cuz I was curious about everything and wanted to know the facts about everything.
“This is before I knew such a thing as ‘tournaments’ for Smash Bros. even existed. Was just a hobby in Middle/High School. I did this for a lot of games, just never posted it all online. Had pencil, paper, and a 19 inch CRT in my room, and I often had to use a lot of patience, smart strats, great timing, and backup tests (and either 2 or 3 controllers at once often), in order to make sure it was all perfectly accurate. Then I found out about Action Replay years later lol.”
A single frame, which accounts for 1/60th of a second, seems to have cost Zain the entire tournament. The razor-thin margin between winning and losing in Melee is what makes the game still exciting to watch and play 20 years after its release.
Mew2King has been obsessed with Melee since its release and is one of the original architects of understanding the game from a data point of view. Melee is an incredibly deep fighting game and its mechanics are still being mastered decades after hitting the Nintendo Gamecube.