New, returning faces are taking over the competitive Super Smash Bros. rankings

The return of a king and formation of a new ranking.

At different points throughout the year, the Super Smash Bros. community gathers around their computers to see which players are named the best of the best based on tournament results. But those rankings that mean so much to players and fans can only happen if there is a team behind the scenes working to curate and ensure the right stats and metrics are being used. 

There have been a number of different rankings used over the years for Melee, Brawl, Smash 4, Ultimate, and even modded titles such as Project M and Project +.

No single ranking system held a total monopoly, but the most popular and frequently referenced over the last several years was the Panda Global Rankings (PGR).

In various forms, the PGR ran from 2015 until 2022, featuring a voting process that changed over the years and depending on the game in question. Across each iteration Pandas PG Stats team would work together with panelists from around the Smash community to put together a list of the 50 best players at the middle and end of each competitive season. 

Unfortunately, Panda is not operating as it was when it launched the MPGR Summer 2022 and PGRU v3 in mid-2022.

Following a rapid decline surrounding the cancelation of the Smash World Tour, Nintendo drama, and an exodus of talent when Panda CEO Dr. Alan Bunney stepped down the once hub of Smash data and stats has sadly become a shell of itself. 

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As a result of all of those factors, it suddenly looked like there wouldnt be a conclusive end-of-2022 rankingat least until a new competitor stepped into the ring. 

In collaboration with nearly every corner of the community, tournament hosting website Start.GG is bringing the heat with the return of the SSBMRank and new UltRank systems. This will see a mix of new and old heads joining forces from Melee Stats, Melee It On Me (MIOM,) OrionRank, EchoRank, and OmegaRank to provide definitive, community-run rankings. 

SSBMRank, otherwise known as the original MIOMRank, hasnt been active in full since the PGR took over Melee in 2018 but it returns again when the community needs it most in 2023. Additionally, a number of the other ranking groups will collaborate to help form the UltRank for Ultimate too. 

For 10 straight days starting on Jan. 11, start.gg will host articles, stats, and more for the top 100 players in both Melee and Ultimate as selected by the participating groups.

The website will have no part in the actual rankings and is simply there to provide a stable and visible home for the rankings, with 100 percent of the ad revenue generated from these articles going to the creators. 

Smash rankings have always been a labor of love by the community, and we’re excited to help carry that torch forward by providing them a home on start.gg, the Start.GG team said. 

And it doesnt stop there, with FURIA launching its own Performance Ranking for select local tournaments around the U.S. to support the tier two scene. You can expect more stuff like this to pop up in the future too from organizers and sponsors too.

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