All the talk nowadays is about "seeding predictions," but we know you've really been hankering for another round of UltiWhirled Power Rankings. This time: the Power of the Force Rankings, in which teams are paired up with appropriate Star Wars characters, and ranked accordingly. Nobody gets to be Luke or Anakin.
Just for fun, and to give it a little 'Club Championships' spin, we've included a "Frisco Tip" for each team, a little piece of advice from UltiWhirled for finding success at Nationals.
May the force be with you!
1) GOAT: Yoda
|Violated my disc space, you have.|
All claims to the contrary aside, GOAT’s acronym totally stands for Greatest Of All Time. This year, they’re actually starting to look the part, so GOAT gets paired with the incomparable Yoda, the 900-year-old Muppet with telekinetic superpowers and an inexhaustible wealth of knowledge.
Frisco Tip: don’t go near the mixed fields unless you want to be picked up.
2) Revolver: Han Solo
He may carry a blaster instead of a six-shooter, but Han Solo is the archetypal space cowboy. Harrison Ford carries whole sections of the original trilogy, and best of all, the iconic “I Love you” / “I know” exchange goes down as the greatest ad-lib ever.
Frisco Tip: Try the “Scoundrel” line at the tournament party.
3) Machine: R2-D2
Of all the Star Wars machines, R2 is clearly the best. He's hilarious and adorable, but he also plays a pivotal role, bringing Princess Leia’s desperate message to Obi-Wan and thereby facilitating the salvation of the Jedi and the rebel alliance and the overthrow of tyranny. Not bad for an astro droid.
Frisco Tip: Feel free to use those rockets when you’re going up for a disc; they should make up for the lack of hands.
4) Ring of Fire: Mace Windu
|Even Mace know's he's gonna get it.|
Only Samuel L. Jackson could pull of a character almost as badass as Johnny Cash. Admittedly, Windu and Cash wouldn’t get along as far as pesky things like ‘rules’ are concerned, but the cool factor makes the comparison work anyway. Unfortunately, Jackson’s characters have a propensity for dramatic and unpleasant death, which probably doesn’t bode well for Ring.
Frisco Tip: Don’t turn your back on the young player; he’s volatile and not to be trusted.
5) Sockeye: Admiral Ackbar
|Great at triangulating.|
It’s a trap! The fish from Seattle are a perfect match for the fish-faced admiral of the rebel fleet. We fully expect teams to throw crazy junk zones against Sockeye, involving elaborate ruses and pretending that the battle station is not yet operational. Spoiler alert: it’s operational.
Frisco Tip: Target all firepower on the super star-destroyer.
6) Ironside: The Death Star
This giant metal ship can still destroy worlds at a moment’s notice, but people have figured out its fatal design flaw. For some reason these guys keep building the same damn ship. But I guess there’s still no way the rebel cruisers could repel firepower of that magnitude, right? Right?
Frisco Tip: Keep an eye out for small, one-man fighters; they can do more damage than you’d think.
7) Doublewide: Imperial Walkers
Big, metal, and a little clunky, Imperial Walkers are a good analogue for the doublewide mobile home. In battle, the Walkers are pretty tough to take down, and their scary height advantage makes them really fun to watch. Plus, they’re modeled on elephants! How cool is that?
Frisco Tip: Watch out for tripwires on the field.
8) Chain Lightning: Count Dooku
The Emperor may have tossed some lightning around in the 80s, but Dooku has a greater flair for it in the prequel trilogy. On the down-side, it takes for-freaking-ever to find out what the heck Dooku is even trying to accomplish in the movies, and he turns out just to be a lackey anyway, so he just barely cracks the Top 8 here.
Frisco Tip: Capes are awful for Texas weather.
9) Sub Zero: Carbonited Han Solo
|Wait, weren't his hands tied?|
Frisco Tip: Stretch before first-round games. Carbonite is rough on the muscles.
10) Truck Stop: Mos Eisley Spaceport
You will never find a more wretched hive of scum or villainy. Mos Eisley is one of the best mood-setting scenes ever shot; it introduces us to the grimy, hard-working, lived-in aesthetic of the Star Wars universe. Still, the story outgrows the locale pretty quickly, and you don’t really miss it once it’s gone. Bad omens for Truck.
Frisco Tip: If you can’t win the tourney, win the party, cantina-style.
11) Furious George: That Douche Who Blew Up Alderaan
|Minimum sanctioned games? Ha!|
You probably tried to hold out a little hope for Alderaan, but you also sort of knew Governor Tarkin was going to blow it up anyway. He promised he’d play by the rules and spare the planet if Princess Leia gave up the rebels…but you never really believed he’d stick to the arrangement. Following through on promised actions in exchange for agreed-upon rewards is just so…vulgar.
Frisco Tip: More hair gel. Slick it back, boys.
12) Florida United: Tusken Raiders (Sand People)
While the Sand People may ride single file to hide their numbers, Florida took a different approach to stealth: don’t play elite teams. So Florida comes into this saga as just as much of an enigma as the mysterious Sand People: they may be a highly skilled tribe of warriors, or they may be about to run away in fear from a wailing old man. It’s hard to tell.
Frisco Tip: Punctuate stalls with that crazy Sand-People howl. Intimidation, baby!
13) PoNY: Tauntaun
And you thought PoNY smelled bad on the outside. These space-ponies are the only riding-animal on an iceball world, and they don’t even have good cold tolerance. On the bright side, at least they’re good for defrosting Jedi. Just slice one open, insert hero, and hit the “Quick Cook” button.
Frisco Tip: Keep an eye on the PoNY lion, or he might pounce on some Tauntaun flesh. Everyone gets tired of gazelle.
14) Madcow: Rancor Beast
|Just imagine him as a deep-deep.|
Madcow’s character is enormous, scary, and appropriately mad. Unfortunately, it gets itself captured and enslaved by Jabba the Hutt, and it can’t even withstand a single huge, spiked door to the brain-stem. Claymation never had a chance against a Jedi Knight.
Frisco Tip: Biting off opponents’ heads is probably a PMF.
15) Johnny Bravo: Nubian Royal Starship
The closest thing in Star Wars to Bravo’s logo is the sleek, silver Nubian starship that Amidala flies around in. It’s a pretty nifty ship but its main purpose is to break down and strand the heroes on Tatooine. Now, one could argue that the whole Tatooine disaster was pre-ordained, but the mechanical failures still don’t exactly inspire confidence in Bravo.
Frisco Tip: If your ship breaks down in the Texas desert, just call AAA.
16) Condors: The Special Edition(s)
Nobody was really expecting to see these guys hit the big screen again. Now that they’re here it’s a little bit exciting that we all get to reminisce about their late-70s/early 80s heyday, but in reality the re-release is probably just another money-grab that will screw up our favorite stories with unnecessary visual tweaks and a really weird CGI musical number.
Frisco Tip: Don’t fuck with fanboys.
Honorable Mention: Garuda: Garven Dreis
“Almost there…almost there…”