Nintendo Live 2024 Tokyo: E-sports event cancelled after threats to staff and spectators

Media wait for the presentation of the new Nintendo Switch in Tokyo (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara))
Media wait for the presentation of the new Nintendo Switch in Tokyo (AP Photo/Koji Sasahara))

Nintendo has been forced to cancel Nintendo Live 2024 and postpone e-sport events following persistent threats to the company's staff and spectators.

The announcement came ahead of the upcoming Splatoon Koshien 2023 National Finals, an official tournament hosted annually across Japan, where teams of all ages across the country and online compete in Turf War battles.

Nintendo Live 2024 was set to take place in Tokyo on January 20 and January 21, hosting tournaments, stages shows, and two live concerts. Recent news to cancel it has left social media users perplexed as lottery tickets for it have only just closed.

However, many have said they agree with the decision, as fans recalled past threats, including the "burning of Kyoto animation studio back in 2019. Nintendo made the right decision", one individual said.

Nintendo shared scant few details in a notice posted to its site on Thursday (December 7), translated using Google Translate. However, the company said it has been “persistently receiving threats targeting our employees and, recently, the targets of these threats have spread to spectators, staff, etc of the Splatoon Koshien 2023 National Finals.”

While Nintendo did not detail the nature of these threats, they were suggested to have posed serious risk to the wellbeing and safety of staff which has been described as paramount.

Nintendo said it decided to postpone Splatoon Koshien 2023 National Finals, the last round for the annual official tournament for top Splatoon 3 players in Japan, as a precaution to ensure the safety of customers.

Both the Splatoon 3 World Championship and Mario Kart 8 Deluxe Online Challenge Final Stage that were supposed to be held at Nintendo Live were also postponed until further notice.Nintendo apologised for any inconvenience and has thanked people for their understanding as they explained that individuals will now be unable to secure tickets.

The last Nintendo Live in September took place in Seattle, Washington, and showed off gameplay for Super Mario: Wonder.

The cancelled live event was also a potential opportunity for Nintendo to unveil the Nintendo Switch 2. The next Nintendo console might arrive in 2024, but not before spring at the earliest, according to separate reports from VGC and Nikkei Asia.

Any further announcements will be made via X, formerly known as Twitter, as well as their website, so people have been advised to keep a close eye on Nintendo Tokyo's social media accounts. This includes dates for postponed events.