Console Carnage charges into the Quarterfinals

The path to the semifinals starts today. The first round has already exploded with a few surprise upsets; can the quarterfinals provide the same level of entertainment? You bet your nerdy hide they will.

The most famous Hylian and the tournament’s number one seed is gone. Link might have been able to save Hyrule from tragedy time and time again, but he couldn’t stop the onslaught from the Lin Kuei assassin. The Middle Tennessee State of this tournament, can the MK legend continue his upset specials against Halo’s Master Chief?

In the opening round, Mario & Luigi reminded Kirby that they run Nintendo. However, they’ll be in for a test today against Commander Shepard, where the new age meets the old school.

Another opening-round retro battle saw Mega Man outlast Sonic in one of the first round’s tightest contests. Now Cloud Strife stands in the way of the blue bomber’s path to the semifinals.

Fellow arm cannon legend, Samus easily dismantled Ash on his home court. However, she’s facing the bottom half of the bracket’s dark horse, Ryu. Can the face of Street Fighter take down Nintendo’s leading lady?

Cast your votes below and don’t forget to vote on the villain’s bracket, where the top seeds are ruling the roost.

**Remember all matches are staged in Pokemon Stadium. The matches are an enclosed battle where the winner is decided by KO. Each character is limited to a combination of five powers/weapons. Meaning if they have a gun and a sword, they can only have three more additional supernatural powers on top of that**


(2) Mega Man vs. Cloud Strife (7)

Road to the Quarters       

  • Mega Man – win over (15) Sonic with 57% of fan votes
  • Cloud – win over (10) Ezio Auditore with 57% of fan votes

First Appearance

  • Mega Man– Megaman (1988) – Nintendo
  • Cloud – Final Fantasy VII (1997) – Playstation

Cult Classic Appearance

  • Mega Man – Marvel vs Capcom (1999) – Originally debut on Sega Dreamcast and in arcades everywhere, Mega Man has been a staple character in the fighting franchise ever since.
  • Cloud– Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children (2005) – Cloud and his FFVII counterparts starred in their own animated movie. The film focused on the cast’s life following the original game’s ending.


Mega Man

 You know the narrative. The robotic boy wonder was the creation of dangerous minds of Dr. Light and Dr. Willy. Although he’s barely a teenager his suit gives him some ridiculous powers such as:

  • Superhuman strength and stamina
  • Superhuman agility and reflexes
  • Enhanced durability
  • Super slide and even the ability to teleport
  • Ability to jump and dash enormous distances

While his trademark may be his hand cannon. Mega Man’s Mega Uppercut deals out serious damage. Catching an uppercut from a super-powered humanoid’s hand cannon is a one-way ticket to KO City.


Mega Buster – Mega Man’s hand cannon. The most lethal portion of his offense. He can shoot powerful energy projectiles out of his right hand and can even charge up a massive shot that is capable of leveling damn near anything in its path. The Mega Buster also has a built in Copy System which allows Mega Man the ability to steal technology from defeated enemies.

Cloud Strife


 The baby-faced ex-SOLIDER 1st Class is most known for his Buster Sword. A massive cleaver he slices and dices the bad guys with. His most powerful attack with this weapon is easily his Limit Break: Omnislash. An insanely fast and powerful attack that allows Cloud to strike the enemy multiple times for critically lethal hits.


For this tournament Cloud will have only three materias to use in combat. Materia allows Cloud the ability to cast magical spells.

**His weapon and his limit break count each count as a weapon and a power for our 5 weapon/powers rule.**

  • Cure Materia – Healing magic
  • Meteor – Cloud can summon a destructive meteor shower
  • Shiva – Summons the ice Goddess, Shiva to aid Cloud in battle.


Mega Man –Even with the surplus of powers his suit grants him, Mega Man still has a surprising amount of weaknesses. For starters the suit is extremely susceptible to sharp objects. Along with limited protection from blades his suit is vulnerable to high temperatures and pressure leaving his suit susceptible to overheating and possible shut down. This also goes for heavy damage. The suit is durable, but it cannot sustain heavy damage from the likes of falls or a barrage of heavy hits.

Cloud – From his prolonged exposure to Mako energy, Cloud has developed some serious mental side effects. His mental state is in serious question. While he is an experienced combatant he is mentally unstable. Too much stress can leave Cloud questioning his own sanity or even leave him vulnerable to mind control. Not to mention, his steam punk armor may look fancy, but it offers about the same level of protection as a bathroom rubber.


Push – Cloud’s ability to use magic definitely aided him in his last battle, but he might need more than just magic in this one. Cloud’s Omnislash can certainty carve up Mega Man’s armor – IF – he can get close enough to Mega Man. The boy in blue’s super speed will make things difficult for Cloud. Shiva and Comet materia elemental-type damage will certainty weaken Mega Man’s suit however the real question we have to ask ourselves is, can Cloud answer a direct hit from the Mega Buster?

(16) Sub-Zero vs (8) Master Chief 

Road to the Quarters

  • Sub-Zero – upset win over (1) Link with 56% of fan votes
  • Master Chief – win over (9) Lara Croft with 57% of fan votes

First Appearance

  • Sub-Zero – Mortal Kombat (1992) – Super Nintendo, Game Boy, Sega Genesis, & Sega Game Gear
  • Master Chief – Halo: Combat Evolved (2001) – Xbox

Cult Classic

  • Sub-Zero – Mortal Kombat Mythologies: Sub-Zero (1997) – MK’s first side-scrolling action-adventure game was a guilty pleasure for many 90s kids. Was one of the first non-fighting MK inspired games for the N64 and original Playstation.
  • Master Chief – Halo Wars (2009) – The real-time strategy game is one of the worst-selling games in the franchise and it still sold over 2.5 million copies.



The Lin Kuei assassin’s upset over Link was no fluke. The MK mainstay is in the business of killing and business is booming. He’s extremely well versed in hand-to-hand combat, but his skills as a Cyromaner are what make Bi-Han so dangerous. With his lethal manipulation of water moisture, he can create:

  • Ice shields
  • Ice beams
  • Ice swords
  • Deadly projectiles
  • Ice clones

Master Chief

Master Chief was selected to lead the human race. He was built to be a super solider. The SPARTAN II Project made him into a one-man army. His genetic mutations have given him:

  • Superhuman reflexes
  • Enhanced durability – built in exoskeleton
  • Superhuman Strength
  • The dude can even see in the dark – no night vision needed.


In conjunction with his mutations Master Chief’s MJOLNIR V Armor makes him nearly invulnerable. The armor grants him even more durability via its titanium casing and it significantly boosts his already insane strength and agility. In addition, the armor’s bio foam medi-gel can quickly heal the Halo legend from serious wounds or cracks in his armor.

Along with his super suit Master Chief’s armed with:

  • MA5D-ICWS – While this may be a standard assault rifle in the Halo Universe its 7.62 NATO rounds are anything, but standard in the hands of the MC.
  • M6D Pistol – A UNSC standard sidearm. Unlike the average pistol this puppy carries nearly a hundred round of ammunition, the precision of a M9 and the power of a revolver. After all, this pistol was meant to be the future of combat.
  • M9 Grenade – Nothing fancy about this frag grendade.


Sub- Zero – There’s no doubt he’s a killer. There is doubt in his defense though. While his offense is frightening, Sub-Zero is still just a super violent ninja. He’s vulnerable to anything an average human being would be including, bullets.

Master Chief – Maybe he’s an example of poor script-writing. Maybe Halo writers were all Superman fans because MC definitely has a slight ‘God-complex.’ With his MJOLNIR armor he is literally a human fortress with barely any glaring weaknesses. His biggest setback is firepower and ammunition. If he runs out of ammunition, he is significantly less talented in the hand-to-hand department compared to some of the other characters left in this tournament.


Master Chief – If anyone can slow down Master Chief in this tournament it’s Sub-Zero. Sub-Zero’s ability to conjure up ice walls, spikes, traps, and damn near anything else he desires significantly evens the playing field. He has the ability to freeze incoming grenades and bullets, but can Sub-Zero break through that MJOLNIR armor? That’s the trump card here for MC. He’s a monster even without it, but the man’s survived planet explosions in that suit. The ice magician was able to summon up an upset last round, but think the UNSC solider is too much for him this time.


(3) Samus Aran vs. Ryu (11)

Road to the Quarters

  • Samus – win over (14) Ash Ketchum with 64% of fan votes
  • Ryu – upset win over (6) Solid Snake with 57% of fan votes

First Appearance

  • Samus – Metroid (1986) – Nintendo
  • Ryu – Street Fighter (1987) – Arcade game by Capcom

Cult Classic

  • Samus – Super Metroid (1994) – Arguably the best game in the franchise, the Super NES game is still one that is held close to fan’s hearts.
  • Ryu– Street Fighter II Turbo (1993) – While surprisingly not the most successful Street Fighter game it is easily a fan-favorite amongst Street Fighter fans. Ryu’s appearances in Marvel vs Capcom games are also a cult favorite.


Samus – The intergalactic bounty hunter is a human fused with Chozo DNA. This grants her some near superhuman abilities even without her powerful Varia Suit.

Without her suit Samus still has a genius-level IQ, adept in close-quarters combat, a marksman, and is extremely dexterous and agile. Naturally the Varia Suit accents all of these natural characteristics and adds a little punch of its own.

Varia Suit

  • Power Beam – Similar to Mega Man’s hand cannon, the suit’s power beam utilizes energy projectiles to eradicate enemies. Samus can also charge up her power beam for a heavy shot.
  • Morph Ball – Samus literally morphs into a petite fortified ball capable of laying equally tiny bombs that pack a not-so tiny punch.
  • Suit Visor – A target-locking system and also grants Samus the ability to hack any computer, instantly accessing secured information.
  • Speed Boost – A supersonic speed boost courtesy of the suit’s alien technology.
  • Enhanced Durability and Adaptability – As mentioned her naturally abilities are greatly enhanced in the suit. Her ability to withstand damage is exponentially increased and the suit’s ability to adapt allows Samus to survive in environments with subzero temperatures or high heat/pressure.



Ryu doesn’t have a fancy super suit. He doesn’t need one. With his trademark white Gi the Shotokan master handles enemies with his Hadoken and Hurriane Kicks. Ryu’s advanced training and understanding of the martial arts allow him supernatural abilities capable of defeating nearly any foe. In addition, his Hadoken uppercut may be one of the most terrifying moves of all-time. It is an instant KO.


Samus – Samus’ suit allows her the ability to handle the galaxy’s most dangerous game, but it also is her biggest weakness. The suit requires a tremendous amount of strength and mental fortitude to operate. The stress of using the suit has made Samus lose her grip on reality leaving her vulnerable to attack. The longer she uses the suit the more fragile her mental state becomes.

Ryu – The Tokyo killer is a world-class fighter, but outside from his martial arts prowess he’s just a man. He’s arguably the best close-combat fighter in this tournament, but he doesn’t have much for defense.


Samus– If Samus didn’t have the Varia Suit this might be a contest. With her suit’s arsenal I cannot see a way Ryu wins this one. His Hadoken might be able to negate Samus’ Power Beam, but he doesn’t have anything to defend himself against her super speed or the fact she can lock-on to him from afar. Even if Ryu got in close, Samus’ morph ball turns the tables right back in her favor. Without a legit defense, I can’t see Ryu punching his way past technology.

(5) Mario & Luigi vs. (4) Commander Shepard

Road to the Quarters

  • Mario & Luigi – win over (12) Kirby with 71% of fan votes
  • Commander Shepard – win over (13) Dante with 57% of fan votes

First Appearance

  • Mario & Luigi – Super Mario Bros. (1985) – Nintendo
  • Commander Shepard – Mass Effect (2007) – Xbox 360

Cult Classic

  • Mario & Luigi – Mario Paint (1992) – The Super NES bargain bin game is stuff of legend for old Super NES gamers. The “Gnat Attack” mini-game was hours of fun for anyone who has ever played this game.
  • Comander Shepard – Mass Effect (2007) – With only three titles to his name it is tough to pick a game that’s a ‘cult classic.’ The original ME is however, just that. With great story, but outdated gameplay it is a guilty pleasure for diehard Mass Effect fans.

 **Shepard also stars in the Dark Horse published ‘Mass Effect’ comics**


Mario & Luigi –The world’s most famous plumbers don’t bring too much to the table in terms of raw physical power. Despite being five-foot nothing, the siblings can jump darn near three stories high. However, aside from their NBA Jam skills, the duo’s fighting powers rely solely on “Power-Ups.”

**Note for this tournament each of the Mario brothers will only have two Power-Ups. The ‘Star’ Power-Up will be effectively a one-time use for either Mario or Luigi**


  • Super Mushroom  The classic. The super shroom turns Mario into an Italian Godzilla. He can crush tall buildings in a single stomp.
  • Cape Flower – Super Mario World’s finest addition to the Mushroom Kingdom. This Power-Up gives Mario the ability to fly, glide, and stomp out the competition.


  • Fire Flower – Luigi eats flower. Luigi breathes fire.
  • Super Leaf – The trademark from Super Mario 3. It may look corny, but the raccoon suit is clutch.

Shared (Only one of the characters can use this Power-Up)

  • Super Star – Their trump card. With the Super Star the pair are invincible. Literally anything they touch is D-E-A-D. That is if they can hit them before their 15 seconds are up.

Commander Shepard

The Alliance legend is one of the finest military commanders in human history. Utilizing his arsenal and unique class powers, Shepard has saved the galaxy not just once, not just twice, but thrice times.

**Note for this tournament Shepard will be classified as a Solider**


  • M-96 Mattock Assault Rifle – A semi-automatic rifle that first debuted as DLC in ME2. Despite its slow-firing rate the Mattock offers accuracy and serious stopping power.
  • M-6 Carnifex Hand-Cannon – A Mass Effect original and one of the strongest pistols in the franchise. A six-shot clip, but Shepard doesn’t need more than two to put an enemy down with this puppy.
  • M-920 Cain – Using mass-effect based technology the M-920 Cain is essentially a hand-held nuke. It requires an absurd amount of heavy ammo, but this is a one-shot neighborhood destroyer.


  • Marksman (Adrenaline Rush) – Shepard can control his adrenaline. This allows him to slow down time, improve his accuracy, and his physical powers are amplified for a short period of time.
  • Incendiary Ammo –  Literally ammunition that burns upon impact. Once a target is hit with an incendiary-laced bullet the target’s skin will immediately burst into flames.


Mario & Luigi- Live by the Power-Up, die by the Power-Up. The Kings of Nintendo are nothing without their Mushroom Kingdom drugs.

Commander Shepard – Even with his unique class skillset, Shepard is still just a solider. His N7 armor doesn’t offer him anything other than improved protection. He also typically relies on a team during skirmishes. Shepard is a survivor and a warrior, but he’s normally only as strong as his fellow comrades.


Commander Shepard– Bye-bye video game legends. In an arena and tournament like this, I can’t see the Mario Bros. winning here. Shepard’s incendiary ammo clearly gives him the edge. He has the better defense and even with their Power Ups, Shepard’s Marksmen power will give him enough time to pinpoint and land that fatal shot. Mario and Luigi’s only hope is that Shepard is reloading while they snag a Super Star.

Next up: Semi-Finals on Monday, March 22.

Don’t forget to go check on the infamous video game villains bracket and vote on your favorite bad guys!



Photo Credit: Original photo by


One thought on “Console Carnage charges into the Quarterfinals

  1. Pingback: Console Carnage: Turtles and Apes and Demons, Oh My! – Writing PBE

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