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Tuesday, August 17th, 2004

Ulti's Analysis[]

Poll 1734
Division Midgar Division
Match # 17
Match Date Tuesday, August 17th, 2004
Vote difference 53,705
Cloud - 85.32%
70 for - 0 against
Cloud - 97.97%
(32,547 brackets)

Cloud was supposed to get upwards of 82% in this match, but after Duke Nukem's picture was put on a milk carton for the match pic, how could you not vote for him? It was one of the single biggest acts of genius ever seen in the contests, and Duke rode the humor all the way to pulling an early lead against the Summer 2003 champion. It didn't last long of course, but seeing Duke benefit from having such a great match picture was fun to see, even if it only lasted a few seconds. Cloud went on to do quite well against Duke, and even managed to break 80% by the time all was said and done. However, Cloud did end up underperforming by over 2%. Whether this could be attributed to the milk pic or a genuine underperformance remained to be seen at this point, but if you extrapolated the strength of Cloud and Link after their first round matches, Link would be expected to win with around 53% of the vote.

It could easily be argued that Cloud not matching Link's level could be blamed on the match pic of Cloud's opponent, but theoretically, what would happen if Cloud underperformed, or did nothing more but meet standard expectations at best, while Link did better than expected in every single match? It may not have been something to watch after one round, but as the contest progressed, comparisons between Cloud and Link could not be helped. After all, the only character who had even a remote chance of stopping Cloud was Sephiroth, and there was literally no one on Link's side of the bracket that could touch him. If this contest wasn't all about Link/Cloud beforehand, it was painfully obvious that it was all about the two after this match. Cloud may have underperformed by 2%, but the fact of the matter is that he still scored 80% on a character who is able to get in the second round in many cases. No easy task.

It was easy to still defend Cloud after this match, but would the same be possible as the contest progressed? We would see.

Match Trends[]


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2004 Summer Contest Matches

Round One
Link > CATS
Ganondorf > Alucard
Yoshi > Ryo Hazuki
Luigi > Pac-Man
Magus > Luca Blight
Crono > Conker
Bowser > Guybrush
Mario > JC Denton
Mega Man > Earthworm Jim
Tidus > Shadow
Vercetti > Max Payne
Zero > Protoman
Frog > Liquid
Master Chief > Crash
Knuckles > Kefka

Snake > Tanner
Cloud > Duke
Vyse > Laharl
Kirby > Kain
Squall > Bomberman
Ness > Jak
Auron > Scorpion
Vivi > Donkey Kong
Sephiroth > Sly Cooper
Sonic > Terry Bogard
Tails > VJ
Dante > Ratchet
Sora > HK-47
Ryu H > Jill
Sam Fisher > Gordon
Samus > Lara

Round Two
Link > Ganondorf
Yoshi > Luigi
Crono > Magus
Mario > Bowser
Mega Man > Tidus
Zero > Vercetti
Frog > Master Chief
Snake > Knuckles
Cloud > Vyse
Squall > Kirby
Auron > Ness
Sephiroth > Vivi
Sonic > Ryu
Dante > Tails
Sora > Ryu H
Samus > Sam Fisher

R3 and following
Link > Yoshi
Crono > Mario
Mega Man > Zero
Snake > Frog
Cloud > Squall
Sephiroth > Auron
Sonic > Dante
Samus > Sora
Link > Crono
Mega Man > Snake
Cloud > Sephiroth
Samus > Sonic
Link > Mega Man
Cloud > Samus
Link > Cloud (Finals)