Nintendo has sent a cease and desist to The Big House tournament organizers, forcing them to cancel both events planned to happen online in December.
This is just one of many times that Nintendo has decided to undermine the efforts of their most loyal fanbase and, for seemingly obscure reasons, make it impossible for gamers to enjoy Nintendo games in a competitive manner.
The Big House tournament staff tweeted out the announcement Thursday. Apparently, due to the tournaments usage of Slippi — a fan-made PC program that allows for online Melee play using rollback netcode — Nintendo has reminded the community that, for as much as they have benefitted from the esports community in revitalizing their only fighting game franchise, they still don't really care.
This is the first time that a major esports event has been canceled due to its involvement with Slippi. While Slippi isn't needed to host a Melee tournament (see Smash Summit 10 happening this week), it has caused a surge in Melee popularity. For virtually the entire esports community, Slippi has allowed for competitive play during Covid-19. It also empowers the Slippi Championship League, the first online Melee league featuring the world's top players.
Why would Nintendo not support this esports ecosystem? We have seen hints as to why based on the words of one of Melee's most esteemed Japanese professionals, aMSa. aMSa just so happens to be a developer on Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and his personal conflict stems from Nintendo's disdain for modded video games.
Nintendo has their reasons and perhaps there are even legal obstacles they are aware of. Still, the question remains whether or not they should be harming those players who have helped create their loyal competitive fanbase.
More on this story as it develops.
UPDATE 11/19: The host of The Big House had this to say about the announcement:
The first public comment by Nintendo was posted by Patrick Shanley on Twitter.
Warcraft 3 is my one true love and I will challenge anyone to a game of Super Smash Brothers Melee.