Three takeaways from The Box Championship Circuit: Qualifier #1
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The first qualifier for Juan “Hungrybox” DeBiedma’s The Box Championship Circuit concluded on Wednesday evening. Top Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl players from all across North America joined the online event to vie for spots in the upcoming Invitational Finale.

Here are some of the biggest takeaways from the event.

The best April is one of the best NASB players period

Aaron “Bodedee” Hansen has established himself as the best April O’Neil main at recent NASB tournaments. Less than two weeks ago, he won Nick @ Nightclub, a stacked in-person regional, defeating the likes of Jean-Michel “Karkat” Thompson, Bryan “as4p” A. and Theodore “squible” Landegger. Now, after winning The Box Championship Circuit Qualifier #1, Bodedee is making a strong case for himself as one of the best NASB players, period.

Bodedee made a clean sweep through top 64 and into top eight. He conquered Austin “901|Austin” DeShazo, “Androoovii” and Duncan “Weger” Edge without dropping a game. However, Bodedee suffered a 3-1 loss in winners semis to Super Smash Con: Fall Fest runner-up Tyler “mirrorman” Morgan.

In response, Bodedee simply began another commanding run through the losers bracket. He eliminated both as4p and “UnicornProGamer,” 3-0, to earn a spot in losers finals. There, Bodedee had a more competitive set, beating Brad “Remix” Cook 3-2. In grand finals, Bodedee fought back against mirrorman with a vengeance, defeating him 3-0 in both sets to win the tournament and advance to the Invitational later this month.

Remix excels with the rarely-seen Powdered Toast Man

The hard-hitting Powdered Toast Man is rarely used in the highest echelon of competitive NASB. Despite this, Remix piloted the heavyweight to great success at The Box Championship Circuit: Qualifier #1. On his run to third place, Remix made it all the way to winners finals and was one of only two players to take games off of Bodedee.

Remix’s performance leading up to top eight was dominating, albeit not as uncontested as Bodedee’s run. Remix advanced into top 64 after earning 2-0 wins over “TheMogulTTV” and Daniel “Dragoomba” Bickar. Then, he beat “Sirus” 3-1, “UnicornProGamer” 3-1 and as4p 3-0.

Even when facing the toughest competition possible on winners side of top eight, Remix proved to be up to the challenge. As the 12th seed, Remix conquered No. 1 seed Jared “husky” Ferguson with a commanding 3-0. Afterward, his run came to an end after he lost a pair of five-game sets to mirrorman and Bodedee.

Sirus proves Korra is viable at The Box Championship Circuit Qualifier #1

Patrick was fittingly the star of the last NASB update. Once considered the definitive worst character in the game by many players, recent buffs have elevated Patrick to viable fighter status. In comparison, another rarely-used character, Korra, received a minimal number of adjustments. However, Sirus showed that Korra can be a threat even without a massive overhaul, using her to reach top eight at The Box Championship Circuit: Qualifier #1.

Sirus lost to Remix in the first round of top 64 as expected. However, he managed to pilot Korra through an impressive losers run, ultimately finishing in seventh place as the 21st seed. To start, Sirus eliminated Nathan “Blackimar64” Cole 3-1, “SaltQueenJuni” 3-0 and squible 3-2. These wins earned Sirus a spot in top 16, at which point he had already outplaced his seed.

Still, Sirus sought to do more than overperform by merely one round. The Korra main had another pair of upsets in him, as he defeated Max “maxi” J. 3-2 and Ryan “SliceNDice” Lindsay 3-1. While he suffered a 3-0 loss at the hands of as4p, Sirus nevertheless proved to be one of the few players who could earn big wins with the less-than-stellar Korra.

Looking ahead

According to the tournament’s Smash.gg page, the top three finishers at The Box Championship Circuit: Qualifier #1 earned spots in the Invitational Finale from Dec. 14-15. As a result, Bodedee, mirroman and Remix have all advanced to the final phase of the circuit.

The second and final online qualifier event will take place on Dec. 8. Qualified players will compete at the Invitational Finale for $5,000 in prizes, along with an additional $5,000 for a charity of the winner’s choice.

Dylan Tate is an alumnus of the Hussman School of Journalism and Media at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a gaming journalist with a love for Nintendo esports, particularly Super Smash Bros. and Pokémon.
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