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EVO Online Event Cancelled After Abuse Allegations Surface


Evo Online 2020 has been cancelled due to Big names pulling out of the online event.

This is following allegations of sexual misconduct against the organization’s co-founder and CEO, Joey “Mr. Wizard” Cuellar.

Street Fighter V, Mortal Kombat 11, among others have pulled out of the event citing solidarity for the victims of these allegations.

Mortal Kombat’s developer NetherRealm studios’ official statement regarding the withdrawal states “We stand in solidarity with those who have spoken out against abuse”.

Mortal Kombat narrowly missed out on being part of the event before Covid-18 forced the event to go online and move over to games with competent rollback netcode.

By the 30th of June, 1,357 competitors had already registered to compete in Mortal Kombat across Evo online’s three regions.

Street Fighter V however had a different journey.  This game was originally a certainty for the Evo event, but due to its poor reputation for having badly optimized netcode it was a poor choice for the online experience.

CapCom has also decided that they should withdraw from the event stating “Out of respect to those who have been affected and to the current investigation, we felt this was the appropriate course of action. We apologize to the players and fans who were looking forward to these tournaments.”

EVO Online Event Cancelled After Abuse Allegations Surface

The popular fighting game “Them’s Fightin’ Herds” has also been pulled from the line-up.

Mane 6 which is the developer for this My Little Pony inspired game said in their statement: “The current situation surrounding Evo organizer Joey Cuellar has created an environment that we feel uncomfortable being involved in, and we are unwilling to have [Them’s Fightin’ Herds] showcased on the Evo stage under the current circumstances”.

Among the developers removing themselves from the line-up is Bandai Namco which means their extremely popular games, Tekken 7, Soulcalibur VI exhibitions, and Dragon Ball Z will no longer be part of the event either.

Bandai Namco’s statement went like this: “Bandai Namco Entertainment America Inc. has decided to end our participation in Evo 2020 in response to recent abuse allegations. We stand in solidarity with the individuals who have spoken out against abuse within the fighting game community and thank our fans for their continued support.”

The allegations against Evo’s co-founder and president Joey Cuellar were made by Mikey Pham, who goes by @PyronIkari on Twitter and is better known as CrackPr0n online. Among the allegations included a 2001 incident, when Pham said he was 17.

As a result of these allegations, Evo tweeted that Cuellar will no longer be involved with Evo in any capacity.

The statement on twitter stated: “Effective immediately, Joey Cuellar will no longer be involved with Evo in any capacity. We are currently working towards his complete separation from the company and have relieved him of all his responsibilities.”

The tweet also stated that going forward Tony Cannon will act as CEO, and that “in this position, he will take a leadership role in prioritizing greater accountability across EVO, both internally and at our events.

We are saddened by these events, but the fact that all these companies have acted in response to these allegations gives the gaming community hope that crimes like these will not go unnoticed anymore or hushed up and swept under the carpet.