Photo Credit: ExHale
After three years, the first full PMRank of the 2020s begins today.
Welcome one and all to the return of PMRank! PMRank is a panel-based Power Ranking of the Top 50 Project+ players worldwide. We're pleased to be doing another full, Top 50 list, covering Undertow 2021 through HELLBREAK. PMRank staff collected and organized data from 25 Project+ events from the ranking season, seeking out tournaments with significant inter-regional competition. Initially, 72 players were qualified to be ranked based on their placings and attendance at major Project+ events from late 2021 through 2022. Panelists were tasked with reviewing this data and ranking each player in order, from #1 to #72. For each player, the highest and lowest rankings on all panelists’ lists were removed when averaging votes to reduce variance. After an initial ballot, panelists were given time to discuss the aggregated results and move closer to consensus in the case of players with high standard deviations. Then, panelists submitted a second and final ballot to determine the placement of our PMRank Top 50.
This project would not have been possible without the dedicated volunteers who helped us engineer spreadsheets, track down tournament data, construct head-to-head charts, create and revise ranking ballots, write and edit player summaries, and gather photographs. A number of photographers have given us permission to use their high-quality photographs of Project M/+ players for the purposes of this project as well.
Without further ado, let us celebrate the first chapter of players who have made this year's Top 50.
Photo Credit: TheZardDog
Garnering not only a Top 50 rank this year but an honorary award for “Most Tournaments Attended”, we’re proud to present PotatoesAreYum as our #50! While starting the season off losing to Akimi and Kendrick at Undertow 2021, at Blacklisted 6, Potatoes snagged wins over Domlax, Ferrari77, and long-time PM legend HyperFlame. Upon returning to the West Coast, he’d pick up a win over Quandiverous at Jailbreak, then he headed to the Midwest, where he took sets from Atomsk and Grab2Win at JBB and SUPER Accel, respectively. At You’re So Mad, the waterfall format allowed Potatoes to play a whopping 19 sets on his way to a 13th place finish, and just the next month he traveled to Smash Camp 2022 to pick up wins over Guntherz, Anday, and Star. Results-wise, things stayed fairly quiet until The Grand Line, where he defeated Suvir, Nezergy, Av, LoyaL, and Jason Waterfalls to finish third behind The Doctor and Ivayne. The final three tournaments of the year proved to be somewhat quiet for Potatoes, but he still picked up solid wins on Tismatic, Bird, Thalia, Big Large, and Dumshiny, compiling an extremely solid résumé for this season. With the pinpoints on the map being just another place for him to show up, we’re all wondering where in the world our Ganondorf-wielding Carmen Sandiego might go next.
Written By: Stude
There’s a measure of perseverance that comes with being a Game & Watch player in the current meta, and long-time Long Island resident Mr. Watch & Learn has that in heaps. With a high level of attendance this season, he started off with attending Undertow 2021, where he placed 25th, picking up wins over Gluteus, Midnight Blue, and Alyssian Rei. At Blacklisted 6 and JBB, however, the formidable 2D fighter found a series of stumbling blocks and went 2-2 at each event. Redemption was right around the corner, thankfully as just two days after JBB, he carpooled up to Wisconsin for Accel 13: SUPER Accel. Mr. W&L showed that he was still capable of hanging with the best, defeating ORLY, Thalia, and Kendrick en route to Winners Finals. There, he met the Midwest’s best kept secret, Chaloopy, who sent him packing to losers, where Motobug attempted to seal the deal. It wasn’t to be, however, and Mr. W&L returned to Grand Finals, off of a nail-biter of a game five set. After five more tense games, he reset the bracket against Chaloopy to bring the Falcon main to a second set, where Chaloopy promptly 3-0’d him. Over the course of the next couple of months, Mr. W&L put up some respectable results, garnering wins over other Top 50 hopefuls such as Jank, Tuck, and Jisp. Second at Accel 13 remained his best showing of the season, but that performance indicates what really could be possible for our favorite bright pink flat man.
Written By: Stude
Known for his slippery wavelands and flashy combos worthy of a WakuShowCase, Che was one of the more active players this ranking season with nine out of twenty-five events attended. He kicked off the season with an impressive 33rd place finish at Undertow 2021, winning his set against Big Large before being eliminated from the bracket by techboy. At Shipwrecked, he triumphed over Texas Roy Atari and clutched out a game five set against PMRank regular Yung Quaff, earning a respectable 17th at the event. Che continued to attend events throughout the rest of 2021 and into 2022, with only three months of rest maximum in between majors. His highlight of the season, however, came from his performance at Undertow 2022. After an early loss to Vaporeon in his pool, Che went on an amazing losers bracket run, winning five sets in a row. Along the way, he avenged his loss to Suvir from 5:00 PM Fights just a month prior, and stomped Colorado's top Marth, polear, out of the bracket before finishing at a highly respectable 13th out of 116 competitors. If this momentum continues in the 2023 season, we may very well see this warlock waveland his way higher into the rankings.
Written By: ilikepizza107
Photo Credit: FingerStripes
Going into Smash Camp 2022, expectations were high for Arizona’s deep pool of rarely seen local talent, and the residents of the Grand Canyon state hoped to see one of the old guard defend their home turf, or perhaps for a young up and comer to get their first taste of out of state competition. What most didn’t expect, however, was for a Captain Falcon player named Anday to completely flip the script of the whole tournament. Anday, who had only been power ranked as high as #10 in Arizona at the time, stunned the PM scene when he took out the number one seed, Pikmon, with a clean 2-0 in winners round 2 of pools. Having been going to tournaments only in his home state since 2016, Arizona’s wacky cast of characters has forged Anday’s Falcon into a playstyle of “low risk, high reward,” using patient dash dancing and perfectly spaced aerials to lure his opponents in, combined with a deadly punish game that seems to always place the finishing knee with surgical precision. While he wasn’t able to match his incredible peak at Smash Camp during the rest of the year, a win over Tealz at 5:00 PM Fights and a 25th place at his first ever out of state major show good promise for Anday. With some more experience, we can only hope his first big upset is just a preview of what’s to come for this OG member of the Cortez Crew.
Written By: Flarp
Photo Credit: TheZardDog
A mainstay of NorCal Project+ with his patient Lucas, Av makes his PMRank debut after a breakout year in 2022. Despite a slow start to the season with 49th and 33rd place finishes at Blacklisted 6 and Jailbreak, Av began 2022 with a bang at You’re So Mad. There, he took down his local rival PotatoesAreYum and upset the legendary Bladewise to earn his first top 8 of the season. At California regionals Exodus and Grand Line, Av began to pull out his Kirby in bracket, and continued to put up strong showings with wins over Karm, TonTon, and Tealz. Now with a more consistent floaty in his pocket for when Lucas isn’t doing the trick, Av’s stock only rose throughout 2022. He ended the year with two big upsets at Blacklisted 7 and HELLBREAK, taking down Wombat and Narq to avenge his lackluster performances at the previous iterations of both events the year before. If Av’s dedication to the game and constant improvement throughout this season are anything to go by, 2022 may be the first of many PMRank placements to come for NorCal’s rising star.
Written By: Sabre
Photo Credit: emmy
One of the PM community’s most talented artists and tweeters, Qtip demonstrates his competitive talents with his second appearance on PMRank in 2022. While his events in 2021 would be relatively quiet, 2022 is where things ramped up for the Washington Meta Knight main. At You’re So Mad, Qtip defeated former PMRank player Punk Panda (try saying that three times fast), and Suvir in the group stage, though falling to Tealz and an on-fire PwrUp! for a seventh place finish at the event. His last event of the season, Smash Camp: New Lands, saw him earn notable wins over Big Large, Catosat, as well as grealy in a runback from Jailbreak, before being defeated by Motobug to bow out at fifth place. With a strong and growing scene in Washington, Qtip has the potential to ascend even higher in the coming years.
Written By: Motobug
Photo Credit: Chime
Whether you’re talking about his down tilt to dair pillar combos or his PMRank 2022 résumé, “up and down” is the most apt description of PwrUp!’s season. Smash Camp, as well as Undertow 2021, unfortunately lacked fanfare for PwrUp!, as he failed to take any meaningful sets at either event. Fitting snugly between these two insipid tournaments, the meat of the figurative PwrUp! sandwich was You’re So Mad. There, PwrUp! went on an absolute tear winning 16 total sets and amassing wins on CD, Qtip, Suvir and ultimately SipMastah in what might have been the upset of the year. PwrUp! debuted a new character at Smash Camp: New Lands, unleashing his Fox on the Pacific Northwest. Once the growing pains of incorporating a new character into his roster abate and he becomes more fluid between the two, the Fox/Roy dual main will look to establish his success from You’re So Mad! as the norm and not just a flash in the pan.
Written By: Serb
With Chile and the entirety of South America on his back, NyxTheShield made the pilgrimage to the US on four occasions. With dreams of PMRank on his mind, Nyx adjusted on the fly to P+, sometimes with less than a day to adjust from the games of PM 3.6 and Melee he played back home. Nyx used his barrage of hitboxes and his insistence on rolling the dice on Mr. Game & Watch’s Side B hammer to take down some big names in the States. He defeated Grealy, Kendrick and Serb as well as Edge of Glory players Loyal and Mar across his four American tournaments. Additionally, Nyx took second place at The Fight At Fireside - The First Project+ National Arcadian, which was not counted for rankings, but showed that Nyx belonged among the best of the best. Despite the hurdles of transcontinental travel, and not having a Project+ local scene seemingly anywhere within hundreds of miles, Nyx has shown that grit, determination, and a love of the game can push anyone to greatness. We hope these aforementioned barriers do not preclude continued appearances from Chile’s 2D hero.
Written By: Serb
After years of no representation on PMRank and barely missing the cut in 2019, Olimar and ~CP9~ make their PMRank debut in 2022. The patient Olimar saw his playstyle pay off this season, with both strong wins and placements at his three majors. At Blacklisted 6, CP9 aerial’d his way through Yung Matt, Mr. Watch & Learn, Mar, and fellow top Olimar sfy bees for a 13th place finish, the highest placement of an Olimar at any major. Undertow 2022 was less eventful for the now-Texas resident, defeating Tuck while falling to two players he used to play at Massachusetts locals, Comb and Thalia. Returning again to Massachusetts for Blacklisted 7, CP9 earned the best wins of his season in a 3-0 over metroid and a 3-1 over Av, falling to a red-hot Phresh and fellow character specialist Cory for 17th place at the stacked event. With his reserved playstyle and character knowledge, CP9 has carried Olimar to heights never before seen in the Project+ meta, and, with how far the character has been developed in recent times, it’d be no surprise to see CP9 rise even higher in the future.
Written By: Motobug
Photo Credit: Trance1695
Florida Man and longtime Marth main Jagz$ has been a consistent member of the PM community for years, and he was finally able to travel enough to showcase one of Florida’s best players. A local TO, helping to run Tallahassee locals and keeping the game alive there, Jagz$ brings a certain je ne sais quoi to Marth not seen anywhere else. Taking full advantage of everything Project+ Marth has to offer, Jagz employs a flashy punish game to demolish opponents with vicious 0-to-death combos, often ending in dair spikes. Jagz$ performed more or less to seed at the majors he attended, only dropping sets to fellow PMRank players and TomboCombo. In addition to his consistency against the field, Jagz$ also took out Thalia, Plagavis, TRai and most impressively, Kendrick, showcasing his mastery over Marth as the only solo representative of the character in the Top 50. Florida is a state notorious for having great players who don’t travel, and Jagz$ showed the world that when they choose to, they are a force to be reckoned with.
Written By: Serb
Other PMRank 2022 Articles
Last Year's Rankings
- Brennan “FlashingFire” Connolly
- Paul “Motobug” Canavan
- Peter “Pikmon” Woodworth
- Ryan “Sabre” Weinberg
Graphic Design and Character Renders:
- Paul "Motobug" Canavan
- Cosmetic Standardization Project (CSProject) & the Project+ Development Team
- Timothy “ilikepizza107” W.
- Ryan "Sabre" Weinberg