Organizers claim that an unofficial Smash Bros tournament with a prize of over 30 million yen has been canceled because Nintendo suddenly canceled the plan.

The organizers of the '

Smash World Tour (SWT) ', an unofficial tournament for 'Super Smash Bros.' whose finals were scheduled to be held from December 8th to 11th, 2022, have announced that the event will be cancelled. Did. The organizers claim that they had been in talks with Nintendo over licensing, but were suddenly asked to cancel two weeks before the event, but Nintendo denies some of the claims.

Smash World Tour Official Statement | by Smash World Tour | Nov, 2022 | Medium

Nintendo Shuts Down Smash World Tour 'Without Any Warning'

SWT is an unofficial event that holds tournaments for 'Super Smash Bros. DX' and 'Super Smash Bros. SPECIAL'. This event is a large-scale event that will attract 325,000 participants in 2022 alone, with a prize of 250,000 dollars (approximately 34 million yen). Qualifying rounds for the 2022 tournament have been held since March 17th, and the final championship was scheduled for December 8th, 2022, but at the last minute the organizers announced the cancellation of the event. . As a result of this, SWT was forced to deal with refunds and cancellations.

According to a statement released by SWT's organizers, the cancellation was due to licensing issues from Nintendo.

Smash World Tour had been holding unofficial online tournaments in 2021, but during that period, the e-sports team ' Panda ' obtained the official tournament license from Nintendo, so the competing SWT threatened to shut down the tournament. However, contrary to SWT's expectations, SWT was approached by Nintendo for a conference call and was asked if they were interested in working with Nintendo and if they wanted to obtain a license.

Nintendo has shown a stance of taking strict action against content that infringes on copyright, but SWT's activities are not like that, but rather they have been told that they are a good expression of Nintendo's values. . SWT said that after speaking with several senior team members at Nintendo, they believe Nintendo is taking a hard look at its relationship with the community and how to positively engage with it.

After having positive discussions with Nintendo, SWT said, ``We managed the 2021 championship with confidence,'' but considering the history of Nintendo and the community, it is difficult to take what Nintendo says at face value. He was still skeptical. In particular, we refrained from making an announcement regarding the 2022 championship due to a request from Nintendo. Therefore, SWT was aiming to obtain the license and announce the 2022 tournament before the start of the qualifying round in March 2022.

SWT continued to have discussions with Nintendo through March, and for the first time felt that Nintendo was consistently and transparently answering its questions. As a result, the details of the 2022 tournament have been finalized with various tournament organizers around the world, and they are now more confident than ever.

However, SWT says that there were various sabotage attempts from the aforementioned Panda in the lead up to the tournament. According to SWT, many people involved were told by Panda that ``SWT will not be held in 2022'' and ``Even if it comes back, it will be canceled immediately after the announcement.'' This was a direct contradiction to the conversation. SWT has decided to complain directly to Nintendo about this issue and explain that they are being sabotaged and that they cannot speak freely.

Nintendo's answer to that was very sympathetic and reassuring to SWT. Nintendo told them that they had access to Nintendo's licensing guidelines, that Panda was not a representative of Nintendo, and that they needed to talk about Panda's behavior. SWT said that this gave them renewed confidence in Nintendo's commitment and potential for long-term cooperation with the community. It is said that the license application for 2022 was submitted at the same time, working together to best fit Nintendo's schedule.

However, since SWT is global and Nintendo of America has to coordinate with other Nintendo teams, it seems that there is not enough time to obtain an official license. Still, relying on other meetings with Nintendo, SWT pushed forward with a 2022 tour. In the meantime, Panda continued to sabotage the company, including by setting up an exclusive clause that prevented those participating in its own tournaments from participating in SWT.

Having submitted a new license application for the December championship event on April 9, 2022, all that was left for SWT to do was to negotiate for the 2023 SWT. However, from around this time, communication with Nintendo slowed down dramatically, and the announcement of the championship, originally scheduled for July, was forced to be postponed, and in the end, the announcement was made in August without obtaining a license. During talks with Nintendo in September, Nintendo apparently apologized for the time this process was taking, but the matter was never resolved, and it was nearly seven months after the application was submitted that they were able to talk again. It was the moon.

As it was less than a month since the championship was held, SWT confirmed the progress and said, ``Nintendo has many decision-makers involved, and some of them are working hard to emphasize the importance of the relationship with the community and SWT.'' 'There are people who are doing well,' he said. SWT was concerned that Nintendo officials were not aware of Panda's sabotage, and asked them once again to 'set up an opportunity to meet with other decision-makers.'

However, in a conference call held on November 23, 2022, Nintendo stated, ``From now on, Nintendo expects that SWT will only operate under a commercial license, and will not be involved in the upcoming championship or activities in 2023.'' 'We have been asked to deliver the news that the license will not be granted.' SWT asked the reason for this, but Nintendo's response was, ``Since we can't give a specific explanation, we'll have to talk in general terms from now on.'' At this point, it seemed as if Nintendo didn't want the tournament to continue, so SWT felt 'cheated all along.'

As a last resort, SWT asked, ``Can we continue the championship and tour without a license in 2023, and shift to cooperation with Nintendo from 2024?'' ” was the reply. These words became the deciding factor for SWT to cancel the championship.

The document also states, 'To engage in commercial activities using Nintendo IP, we are expected to secure an approved license. After review, we have found that SWT has not met expectations regarding health and safety guidelines, and that we have internally 'It has been determined that the partner guidelines have not been complied with. Nintendo will not be able to license the 2022 SWT Championship and 2023 SWT activities.'

Kotaku, a gaming media outlet that reported on this matter, obtained a statement from Nintendo, which said, ``After continued discussions and deep consideration with SWT, unfortunately we are unable to reach an agreement to hold the event in 2023.'' 'Nintendo has not requested any changes or cancellations to the remaining events, including the 2022 Championship Event, due to the impact on players who were already scheduled to participate.' claims that although no agreement was reached, they did not request that the championship be canceled.

This contradicts SWT's announcement, but SWT confirmed this statement saying, ``We have not even submitted an application for 2023 yet, and the only license application was for the 2022 championship. ``Includes all 2023 activities'' was an addition we hadn't anticipated, and as we have many times over the past few years, 'I asked if they could continue their activities without a license, but they clearly told me that those days are over,' he said, contradicting Nintendo's statement.

SWT said: 'We are deeply shocked by this development and, given Nintendo's trajectory, were really hopeful that significant, positive change would come about. We hope you will reconsider how Nintendo approaches its relationship with the Super Smash Bros. community and partners. We will always continue the dialogue, I hope this will help resolve the issue.'

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