1994 Blockbuster Video World Game Championship: The Intro

If you tried searching for “1994 Blockbuster Video World Game Championship” on the internet’s most popular search engines, chances are you’ll come up dry. There’s not a lot of information out there on the event, which is a shame for me since it was a big moment in my life way back in the day.

By complete happenstance, while searching for my stored-away college diploma and transcripts, I found 2 folders, contents completely intact, of information about the finals of the competition, which were held in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Seeing no other information out there on the subject, it is my self-appointed duty to present this info to the masses, right here, on averagejoe.cc! *cheap pop*

I’ll start off with what I know about the beginning of the tournament (unfortunately, I have no physical evidence to back up my claims of anything before the finals, so you’ll just have to trust me on this.) The tournament started at the local level. Competitors entered the tournament at their local Blockbuster Video store and chose to compete on one of two systems: Sega Genesis or Super Nintendo. My choice was the Genesis, so most info I can remember is about that format. For each system, each store would have players compete in 3 games on their system. Each game had its own scoring rubric which was based on the in-game score plus bonuses. Players would have to arrive at the store at specified times to play one of their games. The 3 game scores are combined to determine a store champion who would advance to regionals.

The games for the Genesis were NBA Jam, Sonic the Hedgehog 3 and Virtua Racer. NBA Jam had players play against the computer for 2 quarters. To get the player’s tournament score, the player’s in-game score was multiplied by some amount (1000, I believe) and a bonus was given if the player outscored the computer (guessing 5000). I don’t exactly remember Sonic 3’s scoring rubric; it may have been in-game score with no additional adjustments. I don’t remember Virtua Racer’s scoring at all. The first round was NBA Jam, where I scored 32 points in my allotted time. I was in 8th place after round 1. Round 2 was Sonic 3, where I was the only person in my store who knew how to get a Perfect in the Special Stage (and for those that remember, Perfects get you 50,000 points). After the second round, I had a commanding lead that I didn’t relinquish. Joe is the store champion! (I still have the shirt to prove it.)

Before the next entry: Pictures of the shirt will be edited into this post.
Next entry: The Regional Tournament and the Finals!
The entry after that: PDF scans of all the paper documents I have (to give the whole story some credibility. Credibility is a nice thing to have, after all.)

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