The Nintendo World Championships returned to Miami for the first time in 25 years this past Sunday, pitting 16 competitors, iincluding one South Floridian, against one another in a grueling series of Nintendo-based game competitions. South Florida’s own Fernando “Fer nSig01” Terracuso won his spot at the L.A.-based finals after advancing from the qualifying round at a Best Buy in Doral this past May 30. The game? A few rounds of Ultimate NES Remix on Nintendo 3DS, which, as the name implies, remixes old-school Nintendo titles by providing new challenges and scoring opportunities.
The finals, however, would prove to be much more intense. Sixteen finalists battled through a gauntlet of five main games, with losers entering a bracket known as “The Underground.” Terracuso was able to move onto Stage 2 after a successful showing at the first game of the evening, Splatoon. Stage 2’s Blastball, a never-before-seen game, proved to be a tough challenge and sent Terracuso to “The Underground.” For this underground stage, he had to be the first of his competitors to complete a speed run of Super Metroid. Terracuso came up short, but he still did South Florida proud. The winner, “Tony Numbers,” bested all other competitors in Splatoon, Blastball, Mario Kart 8, Super Smash Bros., and an agonizing barrage of custom levels created in Super Mario Maker to become the Nintendo World Champion.
Fernando fought valiantly and did us proud, and we had a chance to chat with him after his epic bout.
New Times: What was it like to play in front of all those people?
Fernando “FernSig01” Fernando: Competing against everyone on Sunday was such a rush. It was definitely a little nerve racking at first, but once the adrenaline starts to kick in, you don't even notice that everyone is watching.
Considering you didn't know the games ahead of time, how did you prepare for the competition, if at all?
When I was younger, those were the games I enjoyed, so I had experience playing them. I definitely practiced Zelda a few times, in case it was a game I had to play. My girlfriend Sylvia bought Splatoon for me the night before we flew to LA because I was out of town on a work function. I told her I'm going to need an hour or two just to get the hang of the controls.
Unfortunately, you were knocked out during the Super Metroid stage. What do you think happened?
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I was very disappointed in myself. Super Metroid is one of my favorite games, and I have completed it numerous times. The controllers were inverted from what I was accustomed to playing, so I didn't have enough time to get used to what was given. If I could go back and play it again, I think I would have still been in the competition for sure.
But, you still got the trip to L.A., which is nice! What’s next for you?
Well, I'm going to enjoy some of the perks of getting this far. I will be attending all three days of E3. I'm just looking forward to the experience of walking around [and seeing] all the new technology and video games. I'm also going to collect as much swag as I can carry back home to Florida. This is a once in a lifetime trip, and I'm going to make the most of it.
To catch more of Nintendo at E3 or relive the Nintendo World Championships, visit e3.nintendo.com.