The hugely popular ‘Project M‘ mod for Super Smash Bros. Brawl has now stopped all development, according to a recent apologetic post from the dev team.

Today is a sad day for many Super Smash Bros. fans as developers of the most popular mod of Nintendo’s fighting game have announced their intentions to cease work on the project. The mod, entitled ‘Project M‘, is a modification to Super Smash Bros. Brawl and was designed to make the game more similar to its highly competitive predecessor, Melee.

After 6 years of work, the Project M Development Team (PMDT) announced today that they have made the call to stop working on the long-running mod, to the dismay of many fans. When visiting the Project M website, users are now faced with an apology message from the team and are no longer able to download the files needed for the mod, at least from the official site. PMDT commented:

“We’ve spent six years polishing Project M, and rather than let it drag on through another several years of dwindling development and change-fatigue in the competitive circle, we’re going to consider our work complete.”

Project M Banner

The team described it as “an excruciating call to make” but noted that it was made easier by the satisfaction they have with the latest update v3.6. Very little reason has been given for the team’s decision, although it has been stated that a Cease & Desist from Nintendo was not issued. One member of the PMDT, known as Warchamp7, commented that the shut down was just a preemptive measure, though he was reluctant to give any more details.

One thing that may have factored into the mod’s termination is PDMT’s announcement that they plan to be working on new projects that they claim they are “building from the ground up”. This could mean the development of their own fighting game or perhaps, as some overly-optimistic fans have speculated, the long-working team have finally received some recognition from the Big N itself and are being put to work on something for the final Smash Direct, coming this month.

Project M gained fame after the release of Super Smash Bros. Brawl left many die-hard Melee fans disappointed in some of the changes brought into the long-running franchise. Although Brawl added a huge roster of impressive characters, it played slower and less combo-heavy than Melee, making the game less competitive in nature. Furthermore, the character ‘Meta Knight’ from the Kirby franchise was seen in a tier of his own, vastly overpowering many of the other characters.

PDMT changed Brawl, adding old mechanics from Melee in order to make the new fighting game feel more like the previous iteration, whilst keeping the larger roster. In addition, Project M brought back old characters and stages that didn’t make it into Brawl and made the game far more balanced as well as bringing about the development of new stages, exclusive to the mod.

Project M Costumes

The mod also saw the introduction of iconic character costumes such as Mewtwo’s armor from the first Pokémon movie or Dry Bowser. Admittedly, this is something that is missing from even the newest Smash Bros. game but the latest game has hands down the best character roster. It’s very possible that the community’s reaction to PMDT bringing back Mewtwo in Project M had something to do with Nintendo’s decision to include him in the latest Smash Bros. game.

Now that the team have ceased development, the mod is likely to lose popularity as constant updates and new features were what many people thought kept the game alive. Whilst the files are still available elsewhere on the internet, taking down the Project M website will be sure to do a lot towards killing the game for all but the more determined newcomers. On the upside though, the newest game for the Wii U and 3DS is doing extremely well at bringing the Smash Bros. competitive scene over to the newer game.

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS is available now.