Last week I introduced you to this little fantasy league of mine, where video game characters take the place of real world athletes and compete on the most brutal course in history, The Beast. In The Ultimate Beastmaster show, competitors from around the world try their best to be crowned a Beastmaster, earning a nice chunk of cash and coming back at the end, competing with every other Beastmaster for the title of Ultimate Beastmaster and a heavy monetary prize.
In our gaming edition, there are no coins, rupees or souls to be won, but there is a certain kind of prestige, where one characters steps out of the ruins of the Beast, confident they are the Ultimate Gaming Beastmaster.
Last week, I also introduced you to the first round of contestants: Mario (Super Mario Bros.), Kain (Legacy of Kain), Mega Man X (Mega Man X), Genji (Overwatch), Aloy (Horizon: Zero Dawn), Lara Croft (Tomb Raider LAU Trilogy), Jill Valentine (Resident Evil), Hayato (Shadow Tactics: Blades of the Shogun), Catwoman (Batman Arkham), Link (The Legend of Zelda), Bayonetta (Bayonetta) and Faith Connors (Mirror’s Edge).
For the competitors, I took note of their skills from across all their videogame appearances, including crossovers such as Super Smash Bros. and other such games, matching these skills to the ones required to best the four levels of The Beast. I also took note of their individual styles, their restrictions and sometimes even clothing. Unlike competitors on The Ultimate Beastmaster, video game competitors bring their own clothing to the table, though they’re forbidden from using the many tools of their trade.
For the Beast, the skills required are:
- Climbing: Vertical movement while hanging.
- Ledge Shimmying: Horizontal movement while hanging.
In addition to this, there are advanced skills such as Wall Climbing and Rope Swinging which grant the competitors an edge.
Below is an example of a skill set:
Mario Skill Set: Running, Jumping (Long Jump with two-step running start, Back Flips, Triple consecutive jump,etc.), Wall Climbing (Super Mario World, Mario Galaxy, etc.), Climbing, Ledge Shimmying, Rope Swinging. Mario Restrictions: Short frame. Mario advantages: Nearly endless stamina, jump from ledge.
Having this in mind, I ran Mario and his competitors through the course, noting the obstacles completed, the ones failed, whether they’d go for point thrusters or not and noting the final results. Below is an example of this, Mario’s Level 1 run:
Mario – Level 1:
Mario pelts up Bite Force, performing his signature triple jump standing mid-way up the slope, the third jump bringing him onto the first Grinder. He doesn’t need the chain to help him up. Two long jumps later and he’s through the Grinders.
Next up is Faceplant, where Mario’s short frame could pose a problem, as he can’t properly reach the walls, but he holds on to one side and jumps at the chain, swinging to the first Energy Coil. Mario considers the Thruster and makes the jump to it, a long jump with a short running start, one of his specialities. He jumps and punches the thruster then returns to the starting coil, not much time or stamina lost.
Mario’s jumping skills make short work of the Energy Coils and it’s one regular jump to the Dead Bolts. Here he’s in trouble, his ledge shimmying isn’t the best skill for this, and his stocky frame means he can’t properly grab the bolts on each side and swing from them. Still, with some clever jumps and grabs he makes it through, ignoring the point thruster, and onto the mag wall, which he completes with ease but missing the other point thruster, having trouble stretching to reach it.
Points for Level 1: 95, Time Taken (relevant for ties) 4:30 minutes.
For the sake of brevity, considering the amount of competitors going through the levels, below are the rankings at the end of each level. Twelve (12) competitors start the competitions, then the top eight (8) make it to Level 2. After that it’s the top five (5) who make it to level 3 and the last two then advance to Level 4.
If you wish to know how a specific character’s run went to understand their score, let me know and I’ll relate their experience in the comments.
Level 1 – Max Points 115 – Rankings. Ties broken by faster times.
- Mega Man X – 115 points.
- Kain – 115 points.
- Catwoman – 115 points.
- Lara Croft – 105 points.
- Aloy – 105 points.
- Faith – 95 points.
- Mario – 95 points.
- Genji – 90 points.
- Bayonetta – 50 points.
- Link – 35 points.
- Hayato – 30 points.
- Jill – 25 points.
Level 2 – Max Points 155 – Rankings. Ties broken by faster times. Scores are cumulative.
- Mega Man X – 270 points.
- Kain – 270 points.
- Lara – 260 points.
- Mario – 200 points.
- Genji – 190 points
- Catwoman – 175 points.
- Faith – 170 points.
- Aloy – 150 points.
Level 3 – Max Points 155 – Rankings. Ties broken by faster times. Scores are cumulative.
- Mega Man X – 425 points.
- Kain – 425 points.
- Lara – 415 points.
- Mario – 300 points.
- Genji – 195 points.
Level 4 – Winner – Mega Man X
For the last level it became a competition between superhuman competitors. Kain’s endurance and superhuman strength and grip strength which had served him across the Beast’s punishing three earlier levels versus Mega Man X’s fast movement and climbing abilities. His Mega Buster was also ruled to be part of his body, using his own internal energy to work, thus not a tool and allowed, giving him an advantage on pressing point thrusters from afar.
Though both competitors had what it took to obtain perfect scores in every level, Mega Man X’s sheer speed and mobility won out the game, though it’s too early to tell how the robot will fare in the finals, where the course will change and become much more treacherous.
And so we have our first Beastmaster. Next week a new set of competitors will take the stage. There is still time for you to suggest new participants, which might compete next week or in the following ones. They can be from any game, series or genre, as there are conversion rules in place for things like fighting games, where the athletic abilities here displayed might not be the norm.
That’s it for this week then, we’ll see you on the next edition of The Ultimate Beastmaster – Gaming Edition!