March Madness VII: History of the March Madness Tournament

CP REWRITTEN, United Media Headquarters – Have you ever wondered about the origin of the March Madness tournament in the army community? Or how the tournament has evolved over the years?

Just as the name suggests, the March Madness tournament is held in the month of March. Despite the seventh edition being held this year, it has been a decade since the inception of the inaugural tournament. In this tournament, armies will go head-to-head with each other in back-to-back battles, with a single-elimination format. Only the winners of each round can progress to the next until the finals, where the eventual winner will be announced. With it being a well-known fact that the two previous March Madness tournaments have caused several controversies, it is time to look back at the history of the tournament to see whether or not the March Madness has in fact always been madness.

March Madness I to IV

In 2013, the then reporting body of Club Penguin Armies, CP Army Central (CPAC) organised the inaugural March Madness tournament. This was met with decent success, leading CPAC to organise the second to fourth editions in subsequent years until 2016. However, as CPAC faded, so did March Madness. 

March Madness V

In 2020, the CP Online Army League (CPOAL) brought back March Madness tournaments. This was the first March Madness tournament to be held during the Covid-19 Pandemic, which saw many armies having sizes of over 100 troops. However, this tournament was marred with a controversy that never saw a true winner to the title. A semi-final battle round between Ice Warriors and Doritos resulted in the community being unhappy with the way the round was judged. As a result, the Finals were never carried out and it led to another tournament being held to determine the winner, the August Sadness.

March Madness VI

In 2021, the March Madness tournament was organised by CP Army Headquarters (CPAHQ). However, a few controversies during this tournament led to some major changes in the army community. Several armies felt their matches were unfairly judged, resulting in some unhappiness. This led to a few armies including Rebel Penguin Federation, Ice Warriors and Help Force deciding to break away from CPAHQ and form the current CP Army Network (CPAN).

As a result of there being two media outlets, it was decided that this year’s March Madness would be held jointly by participating army leaders instead, including a united tournament media and a judging team that is handpicked by armies. With March Madness VII now officially underway, it is time to take a look at the previous winners, whilst we wait and see which army will be crowned this year’s winner. 

Past winners

Here’s a list of past winners in chronological order:

2013 & 2014: Nachos

2015: Ice Warriors

2016: Nachos

2020: No winner – Finals were never held

2021: Ice Warriors

To learn more about the purpose of March Madness tournaments and how it has progressed over the years, United Media had the opportunity to sit with Kingfunks4 for an exclusive interview.

How did the idea of having March Madness tournaments come about?

I can’t remember how March Madness came about exactly, it was just after I was CEO of CPA Central so it was a bluesockwa thing when it first came around, but I think the idea was to fill the gap between Christmas Chaos and Legends Cup – and it worked quite well to keep the community ticking over.

Do you have any memorable moments from the past 6 editions of March Madness? If so, what are they?

The most memorable edition were in the CPPS army era, definitely the long overdue one in 2020 with the Ice Warriors and then the controversial semi finals last years were both massive for this tournament. The Nachos and Ice Warriors did have a good battle in the original tournament which was good to see.

In your opinion, how has March Madness changed over the years?

March Madness was never a major tournament, it was only ever Christmas Chaos, Legends Cup and Champions Cup to a smaller extent – I never remember March Madness being taken that seriously at all until I came back and it was a much bigger deal than before.

What are you looking forward to in this year’s edition of March Madness?

It will be interesting to see if the Templars can break up the RPF IW monopoly on tournaments at the moment, I think they have pulled away even further since Christmas Chaos so have the capability to win – I also do feel if the Water Vikings get through to the first round against Ice warriors that could be one to watch.

In the past two years, March Madness has definitely never been short of drama. As we have experienced previously in this tournament, we have seen just how involved the army community is and how they want a fair judging process. It is hoped that this year’s March Madness will run smoothly, due to the success of past tournaments held by the community.

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