Last Friday, I traveled to Phoenix for the eighth annual THQ SuperStar Challenge, where a host of WWE superstars and divas were on hand to once again prove who was the king (or queen) of THQ's SmackDown! vs. Raw video game. Past winners include Shelton Benjamin, former WWE superstar (and current TNA wrestler) Elijah Burke, and last year's champion Kofi Kingston.
While on hand for the event, I got a chance to interview a bunch of the SuperStar Challenge participants, including Kingston, Shad from Cryme Tyme, Beth Phoenix, and even WWE Hall of Famer Dusty Rhodes. Check out the interviews here:
As for the tournament itself, the rules were a bit different this year. In previous tourneys, wrestlers were only allowed to play as themselves in the game. This year, the rules were relaxed a bit and players could use any superstar on the roster. This ruling might have come from the fact that you can't pit superstars directly against WWE divas in last year's SmackDown! vs. Raw 2010, meaning that players like Beth Phoenix, who actually made it to the third round of this year's tournament, were forced to use male wrestlers in some matches.
While avid gamer Kofi Kingston was the odds-on favorite to win this year's tournament, he was upset in the marathon championship match by Cryme Tyme's JTG. Incidentally, the new rule allowing players to use anyone in the game proved to be a boon for JTG, who used Randy Orton (who is rated significantly higher than JTG in the game) for his championship win.
Check out the photos from the event below: