Carnegie Public Library to host its first ‘Smash’ tournament

Logan Raschke, Editor-in-Chief

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The Carnegie Public Library will host its first ever “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” Showdown tournament Thursday afternoon, and more gaming-related activities could come in the future.

Library associate Daniel Bennington said the tournament will begin at 3 p.m. and end around 6 p.m. at the Rotary Room of the Carnegie Public Library.

Director Chris Houchens said the game will be projected against the wall; about five or six youth have registered to compete, and spectators are welcome to sit back and watch the battles.

Bennington said the idea to host a “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” tournament was a collaborative one between him and Houchens.

Bennington said he wanted the library to implement an event in the summer that children and young adults who enjoy gaming could enjoy.

Seeing as he plays the Nintendo fighting game, he said he thought a “Smash” tournament sounded like a great idea.

Houchens said he is a “huge gamer” himself, and introducing the library’s first videogame tournament featuring “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” made a lot of sense to him.

“One of the things that I dream about (is) people are coming to the library to play videogames—that’s amazing,” he said.

Choosing the “Smash” fighting game was a smart decision because it is both competitive and easy to understand, he said.

“‘Smash’ has such a dedicated, competitive scene, like, globally where you can play at such a high level, but it’s such an accessible game since it’s (from) Nintendo,” Houchens said. “Anybody can come off the street and win a match because it’s three buttons you really need to know, so anybody has a chance in ‘Smash Brothers,’ and I think that’s part of the fun of it.”

Houchens said the number of characters to choose from in-game, clocking in at more than 70 in total as of now, makes for a unique experience for competitors in tournaments as well.

Bennington said he hopes this tournament sprouts interest to expand gaming at the Carnegie Public Library as well, opening doors for the staff to organize other gaming-related activities for the community to engage with.

Houchens said the library currently has a collection of videogames and console controllers that people can check out.

But in addition to that, he said he would love to see the inclusion of a gaming center at the Carnegie Public Library sometime in the future, if funds would allow for it.

Bennington said originally, he planned to organize a meet and greet event for gamers to relax and socialize at the library. If the ‘Smash’ tournament goes well, he said he could definitely see the library hosting something like that in the future.

When it comes to the tournament, Houchens said it serves as a good opportunity to have fun with others in the community for free. Even just spectating ‘Smash’ tournaments is a lot of fun with others, he said.

Above all, Houchens said he is excited to see children having fun doing something people do not typically associate with libraries—playing a videogame.

“I can’t wait to see that—to be in the room and have all these kids just cheering each other on and having fun and having the reactions you can have in a game like this, and seeing who wins,” he said.

Logan Raschke can be reached at 581-2812 or at [email protected].