wIt’s important to note the struggle that Armada has seen over the years. Early on in his career he spent years almost winning. With enormous gaps between tournaments in what was still a fledgling time for esports, the mental toll was great. As we know however, he would go on to become one of the five gods. More than that, Armada has put out career statistics that are almost too good to believe. His career set win percentage is over 88% but he also has a winning percentage over 50% when playing against the other four gods.
“For the next two years I still placed 2nd so many times, I got one 4th placement as well, so those two years leading up to my first 1st place major win in the US at Genesis 2 (which was exactly two years after my first trip to the US) was the roughest time of my career for sure. I was very young back then as well. When I went to the US for the first time I was 16. Mentally it was really hard for me getting these 2nd placements. I lost to Mang0, Hbox, and PPMD at three different supermajors. Against Mang0 and PPMD I was also up, like I was coming from winners going into grands AND being up in grand finals set one. So mentally that was really hard for me. I almost had this negative mentality and spiral of like, “Oh I can’t win.” I knew I had the skill to do it but mentally I didn’t feel like I could clutch it out. Winning that time at Genesis 2, it was such a relief, then I started winning everything for like a year and a half until I stopped playing in 2013.”
It is an interesting thought then, that the beginning of Armada’s career was so extremely demoralizing for him. Were he a weaker person, and had his breakthrough come perhaps later than it did, we may have never seen the rise of the legend we know today. Although this is his second retirement, and he has left Melee singles behind, we have most certainly not seen the last of his involvement and interest in Smash as a whole.
Despite the initial fear of the fan base after he made his announcement to retire, we can all take a breath of fresh air and know that the humble Swedish legend isn’t going to simply leave his beloved community behind. In addition to streaming on Twitch.tv and regularly uploading content to YouTube, he also has revealed a number of things we can look forward to in the future. Although some of this is a gamble, and may not pan out long term, Armada has always been a player who gives everything a solid try.
“I still plan to be involved in the Smash community a lot. I do stream and YouTube and then I will also still be going to events playing teams with Android. We still plan on doing that. Commentating I did a little bit of at Big House and we’re most likely going to see more of that in the future as I do enjoy doing commentary. “
However, there is one thing that has been on every Smash player’s mind in recent memory. Super Smash Brothers Ultimate. Whether you are excited for the game or remain skeptical, the hype that has been generated over the last several months is undeniable. Much of the fan base, as with every new release, is curious as to whether or not this will be the game that bridges the gap between the old guard Melee players, and the modern title players. Armada is no different from the rest. Historically, Melee players have been resistant to new iterations of smash, electing to stick with the game they have played since 2001. Armada however has been more open minded and he has his own hopes for the game to come.
“For Ultimate right now my plan is to obviously stream and YouTube the game mainly but I’m also going to compete in tournaments here in Europe for two or three months before I make up my mind. I will give it a chance, as I do with every title, but there is only a small chance of me being a part of it long-term. I normally tell people to count it as a 5% likelihood and if it happens take it as a positive thing and if it doesn’t happen don’t be too disappointed. I really do want to like the game, and I hope that it’s a part of my future.”
It was no secret that Armada was no fan of Smash 4. Right from the start he knew that the game would not be something he wanted to play long term. However, for those who are still holding out hope that their favorite Smash pro might compete in Ultimate for longer than 3 months, take heart! Firstly, it’s important to remember that he actually liked Brawl, and competed in events for nearly a year and a half. On top of that he already seems to like Ultimate far more than Smash 4! Despite his history of skepticism towards Nintendo, there are things about Ultimate that have given him more hope than in the past.
"I think they did make positive changes. For example, being able to run up, crouch, and do things out of that is a good change to help with movement. Landing lag being reduced, hit stun and shield stun being longer, these are all good things so it's not like everything is bad. If I compare my experience with Smash 4 to my experience with Ultimate, it’s already off to a better start. If Nintendo improves Ultimate with the patches as much as they improved Smash 4 there actually is a chance that I feel like it’s going to be a really good game. I’ll for sure enter some tournaments though, that’s 100% guaranteed.”
All in all, there is still a bright future going forward for Armada. He is clearly still in love with the Smash scene. As saddening as it was to see him leave Melee singles behind, we have not seen the last of him by any stretch. He left his singles career behind as a legend. Thankfully, whether he is streaming, commentating, playing doubles with Android, competing in a new title, or simply releasing YouTube content, we have a lot to look forward to in his future. We as fans and supporters have not been forgotten, and his love for the people and the series that has helped shape him into the man he is today is still potent.
“Stay awesome guys. Keep supporting smash as a whole. People always ask me how they can help support the game and help out. By showing up at tournaments or watching on Twitch. All these little things do matter in the end. I hope to see you all at some events in the future!”