Community Tournament Guidelines
Publication date: October 25th, 2023
Effective date: November 15th, 2023
Thank you for sharing your passion for Nintendo’s games, characters and worlds. Nintendo cares about the community and would like to support individuals who want to celebrate that passion by creating memorable co-operative and competitive play experiences. At the same time, we want to ensure that fans who are doing so are engaging with our games, characters, and worlds in a way that positively supports other fans, players and Nintendo.
In that spirit, we have created guidelines for individual Organisers to follow when hosting not-for-profit, small scale community tournaments (Community Tournaments) involving games for which Nintendo owns the copyright (Nintendo games). Please familiarise yourself with the guidelines below before planning a Community Tournament.
Community Tournaments may be operated by individuals (Organisers) for individuals participating in tournaments (Participants) and for individuals viewing tournaments (Spectators) provided that these guidelines are followed:
The Community Tournament is small-scale and not for commercial profit
Community Tournaments may not generate commercial revenue except as permitted by these guidelines.
Tournaments may include up to 200 Participants for in-person tournaments or up to 300 Participants for online tournaments.
Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may collect entry fees from Participants in an amount not more than the equivalent of AU$30 / NZ$33 per person.
Entry fees collected from Participants may be used for covering the costs of organising the tournament and towards prizing.
Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may provide goods and services to Participants as prizes.
No prize may exceed a market value of AU$7,500 / NZ$8,250 in total or include the prohibited items outlined in Q17 below.
The total value of cash prizing a single Organiser can offer through Community Tournaments in a 12-month period must be no more than the equivalent of AU$15,000 / NZ$16,500.
For in-person Community Tournaments, Organisers that have reached the legal age of majority in their jurisdiction may collect an admission fee from Spectators of not more than the equivalent of AU$22.50 / NZ$24.75 per person.
Admission fees collected from Spectators must be used solely for the purpose of covering costs of organising the tournament and not used towards prizing.
Collecting fees from Spectators for online Community Tournaments is not permitted under any circumstances.
Organisers collecting fees must publicly disclose all accounting related to the costs of hosting the event promptly, including entry fees, admission fees and prizes distributed by posting them on a website and/or on social media accessible to everyone.
When hosting a Community Tournament, Organisers may not receive goods, services, money, etc., from third parties as sponsors.
Only with the prior consent from Participants, can Organisers monetise posting of videos, still images, etc., related to Community Tournaments on personal accounts, in line with the Nintendo Game Content Guidelines for Online Video & Information Sharing Platforms. The total amount of revenue a single Organiser earns in a 12-month period through these activities should be no more than the equivalent of AU$15,000 / NZ$16,500.
The tournament may use Nintendo game footage or images under the following conditions:
Organisers may show footage of tournament gameplay at in-person Community Tournament venues for games officially launched by Nintendo.
Organisers may use captured footage or screenshots of Nintendo games for any announcement materials of the Community Tournament so long as the game has officially launched.
The Community Tournament is not affiliated with Nintendo and makes no use of Nintendo trademarks or IP except as permitted by these guidelines
Community Tournaments may not falsely imply Nintendo is associated with, sponsoring or otherwise affiliated with the event, and may not be presented as “official” or “endorsed” by Nintendo.
The names of Community Tournaments may not contain Nintendo trademarks or IP, such as Nintendo’s company name, logo, product or service names such as game titles, names adopted from Nintendo games such as character names. This includes any shortened or modified uses of Nintendo trademarks or IP.
Other than referencing the game name to indicate which game is being played at the Community Tournament, Community Tournaments may not make use of Nintendo trademarks or IP, including logos and character art as a part of Community Tournament activity.
The games used must have been officially launched or service has officially begun in the region where the Community Tournament is taking place
Pirated or modified versions of Nintendo games must not be used
Games with online play must use the online gameplay services and/or servers officially provided by Nintendo
The Organiser posts the following notices on-site and on tournament websites and other promotional materials:
“Nintendo is not a sponsor of or affiliated with this tournament."
“Terms for participating in and viewing Community Tournaments using Nintendo games”, accompanied by the following URL:
The Organiser adheres to the following additional stipulations:
Organisers are responsible for ensuring Community Tournaments comply with all applicable laws, including, but not limited to, protection of personal information for Participants and Spectators, and appropriate parental consent for minors.
Organisers must ensure the health and safety of Participants and Spectators to the best of their ability
Organisers will make full efforts to create a Community Tournament that is friendly and welcoming to all, and that fully respects the dignity of Participants and will not tolerate harassment or discrimination of any kind, including based on race, ethnicity, nationality, ideology, religion, belief, origin, social status, class, occupation, sex, age, disability, sexual orientation, gender identity or marital status
Organisers will not permit gambling or the use of alcohol or drugs at Community Tournaments
Organisers will make sure that Participants and Spectators are of age according to the applicable age rating of the game used in the tournament
For the use of any intellectual property rights owned by a third party, Organisers must obtain permission from those rights owners separately from these guidelines
In addition, Nintendo games may not be used for Community Tournaments that:
Are illegal or inappropriately conducted, or could be viewed as offensive or otherwise inappropriate as further described in Q16 below
Fail to protect the health, safety and dignity of Participants and Spectators
Have sponsors or that advertise or promote any entity, products or services
Promote any campaigns or initiatives based on personal or organised opinions, ideologies, or beliefs
Include anything that damages the value of the Nintendo brand and Intellectual Property
Fail to follow these guidelines
Involve anything that Nintendo deems inappropriate
Nintendo reserves the right to take legal action against or cancel any Community Tournaments in its sole discretion, including any tournaments that violate or are likely to violate these guidelines, or Community Tournaments that Nintendo otherwise deems inappropriate. In addition, we may take measures such as prohibiting individuals who violate these guidelines, or engage in other inappropriate acts, from hosting tournaments in the future.
Nintendo is not responsible for any problems that may arise between Organisers, Participants, Spectators or third parties regarding the operation of the Community Tournament. In addition, please be advised that Nintendo will not respond to individual inquiries regarding the guidelines or Q&A.
We may update these guidelines and Q&A from time to time, so please check the latest guidelines and Q&A before announcing and conducting a Community Tournament.
If there are special provisions in other Nintendo guidelines, please follow those guidelines as well.
Q1. What does a "Community Tournament" permitted by these guidelines refer to?
A1. A Community Tournament permitted by these guidelines must meet the following requirements:
Nintendo's copyrighted games will be used in the tournament
It is a tournament organised by individuals
It is a tournament in which players, as individuals, or non-profit teams, are Participants
It is a not-for-profit tournament (for-profit tournaments include not only those where organisers or persons running the tournament seek to receive direct benefits, such as money, or indirect benefits through advertising and promotion but also those that benefit third parties.)
It is a small-scale gaming tournament with 300 or fewer Participants for online tournaments, or 200 or fewer Participants for in-person tournaments
Q2. Is using Nintendo game logos and character images acceptable to promote Community Tournaments? Is it also permitted to use images from Nintendo games to decorate the venue or to use music, sound effects, etc., from Nintendo games as background music at the venue?
A2. No, it is not permitted to use Nintendo game logos, character images, game images, music, or sound effects for Community Tournament promotions, venue decorations, or venue background music. However, you are permitted to use footage and screenshots captured from Nintendo games for promotional materials for your tournament.
Q3. What are some of the tournaments that are not permitted by these guidelines?
A3. Tournaments that are not permitted by these guidelines include, but are not limited to the below.
For-profit tournaments (these are not permitted under these guidelines, even if they only charge entry fees and admission fees below the amounts specified in these guidelines)
Online tournaments that collect admission fees from Spectators
Tournaments that make it a condition of entry in tournaments or viewing tournaments to subscribe to or follow a YouTube channel, an X account, or any other streaming channel or social media account, or subscribe to a paid membership
Tournaments in which Participants are paid a performance fee or other expenses
Tournaments that receive goods or money from third parties, such as sponsors
Tournaments involving the sale of food, beverages, or merchandise
Please note that Nintendo does not currently grant permission for individuals to organise commercial tournaments. We ask for your understanding.
Q4. How can we ensure that the total admission fees collected at in-person Community Tournaments do not exceed the total tournament setup costs?
A4. When organising in-person Community Tournaments that collect admission fees, please set the maximum number of Spectators in advance, and ensure that the actual number of Spectators does not exceed the maximum. Please ensure that the amount obtained by multiplying the maximum number of Spectators by the per capita admission fee will not exceed the cost of setting up the tournament. In the unlikely event that the total amount of admission fees collected exceeds the cost of the tournament setup, the excess amount must be returned to the Spectators who paid the fee.
Q5. Is it possible to name Community Tournaments after a specific product, name of a service or third party?
A5. Community Tournaments and Nintendo games may not be used to advertise or promote any entity, products, or services, or to promote any campaigns or initiatives based on personal or organised opinions, ideologies or beliefs. Therefore, you may not use the name of a third-party corporation, organisation, product, service or trade name as the name of a Community Tournament.
However, if all the individual Organisers, Participants, and the majority of Spectators of a Community Tournament belong to a single legal entity or organisation, the name of that entity or organisation may be used in the name of the Community Tournament.
Example: If all Organisers, Participants and the majority of Spectators are students of XXX University, a tournament name such as the "XXX University Tournament" will be allowed.
Q6. Is it permitted to use Nintendo game titles or character names in the names of a Community Tournament?
A6. It is not permitted to use Nintendo's trademarks or IP in the name of a tournament. For instance, "Super Smash Bros. Super Challenge" and "Splatoon Throwdown" are not permitted as names of Community Tournaments. However, you are allowed to include game names in the description of a Community Tournament to show which games will be used in the Community Tournament. Similarly, Nintendo’s characters must not be used in tournament names, but you are allowed to include them in the tournament description to show which characters could be used in the tournament.
Q7. We want to livestream the Community Tournament on network services such as YouTube – is this possible?
A7. For posting or livestreaming Community Tournament-related content, such as videos and still images that use footage and screenshots captured from Nintendo games, to personal accounts on appropriate video- and image-sharing sites, or monetising your posts, please obtain permission from the Participants beforehand and refer to the Nintendo Game Content Guidelines for Online Video & Image Sharing Platforms in addition to these guidelines. If you decide to monetise your Community Tournament-related posts, such as videos and still images, based on the Nintendo Game Content Guidelines for Online Video & Image Sharing Platforms, please be aware of the limits on the total amount of revenue that you can earn from your posts, as stated in these guidelines.
Please note that Community Tournaments and Nintendo games cannot be used to advertise or promote any entity, products or services, or that promote any campaigns or initiatives based on personal or organised opinions, ideologies or beliefs. Therefore, with the exception of advertisements added by content distribution platforms such as YouTube, please ensure that ads (in particular, third-party advertisements and logos) do not appear in the videos, still images, etc., that you share.
Q8. Would a Community Tournament be permitted by these guidelines if persons affiliated with a legal entity or organisation are Organisers or Participants?
A8. If persons affiliated with a legal entity or organisation would like to organise a Community Tournament or participate in a Community Tournament as an individual outside the legal entity or organisation and not in an official capacity on behalf of the legal entity or organisation, then yes, the Community Tournament will be permitted under the Guidelines. If you would like to organise a tournament or participate in a tournament in an official capacity on behalf of the legal entity or organisation, you must apply for and obtain permission as specified in Q14.
Q9. Would a tournament organised by individuals but outsourced to a legal entity or organisation for operation be permitted under these guidelines?
A9. If the operation of a tournament or the operation of a livestream is outsourced to a legal entity or organisation, the tournament will be deemed to be hosted by the legal entity or organisation. Therefore, this tournament will not be permitted under the guidelines and will require a formal licence that must be applied for as described in Q14.
Q10. Is it acceptable to use Nintendo products as prizes for Community Tournaments?
A10. Nintendo products may be used as prizes so long as the product has launched in the region where the Community Tournament is taking place. Please refrain from using unreleased products for promoting Community Tournaments or as prizes.
Q11. I want to organise a large tournament, with more than 300 Participants in an online tournament or more than 200 Participants in an in-person tournament. What should I do?
A11. Currently, we do not grant permission for individuals to organise tournaments with more than 300 Participants in an online tournament or more than 200 Participants in an in-person tournament. We appreciate your understanding. If you would like to organise a tournament that exceeds the cap, please consider dividing it into blocks, as described in Q12. If you want to host a tournament using Nintendo games as an organisation, such as a club, please apply apply for a licence as described in Q14.
Q12. The total number of Participants across all blocks is expected to be over 300 in my online tournament (or over 200 in my in-person tournament). If a tournament is divided into blocks, such as Block A, Block B, and so on, and the total number of Participants in the blocks held on the same day does not exceed 300 people for online tournaments or 200 people for in-person tournaments, can I still host a Community Tournament based on these guidelines?
A12. These guidelines permit a community tournament divided into blocks, hosted by a single Organiser, as long as the total number of Participants per day does not exceed 300 for online tournaments and 200 for in-person tournaments. For example, in a tournament organised by a single Organiser, if there are 100 Participants in Block A, 150 Participants in Block B, and 80 Participants in Block C, hosting Block A and Block B tournaments on the same day is not allowed under these guidelines since the total number of Participants in a day will exceed 200. However, these guidelines permit hosting Block A and B tournaments on different days since the total number of Participants in a day will not exceed 200 on either day. Hosting Block A and Block C tournaments on the same day is permitted under these guidelines because the total number of Participants in a day would not exceed 200.
Q13. Can school clubs or neighbourhood associations host Community Tournaments under these guidelines?
A13. School clubs are organisations; however, they may conduct competitions without requiring a licence, as long as the following conditions are met and they adhere to the stipulations within these guidelines.
Participation in the tournament will not be open to the public, and the Participants will be limited to the members of the school club.
The game tournament can be a standalone head-to-head competition between up to two schools, but will not involve three or more schools, and the tournament will not serve for ranking or qualification for a later tournament or championship.
Any tournaments that meet the above conditions could use the names of the two participating schools or school clubs in their name as long as the schools agree. If the above does not apply to your tournament, or if you are an organisation other than a school, such as a neighbourhood association, please apply as specified in Q14. If an individual wishes to use the name of a school or company in the name of a Community Tournament organised by the individual, please see Q5. Schools can also register with and participate in tournaments hosted by licensed partners of Nintendo.
Q14. How can legal entities or organisations host game tournaments using Nintendo games?
A14. For a corporation or organisation to conduct a game tournament using Nintendo games, the corporation or organisation must make a separate application to Nintendo and obtain permission to conduct the game tournament prior to announcing a tournament. A Nintendo licence number will be assigned to the game tournament that Nintendo has separately licensed. It is up to Nintendo’s sole discretion whether or not a licence will be granted to a corporation or organisation. Information and relevant forms to apply will be available in the near future. Please check back soon.
Q15. How can I host a game tournament using Nintendo games as part of a charity activity at my high school?
A15. For students to host a game tournament using Nintendo games as part of their school's charity activities, the school to which the student belongs must make a separate application to Nintendo to obtain permission to conduct the game tournament. Any game tournament that Nintendo has separately licensed will be given a licence number by Nintendo. Information and relevant forms to apply will be available in the near future. Please check back soon.
Q16. What do "tournaments that are illegal or inappropriately conducted or that could be viewed as offensive or otherwise inappropriate" refer to?
A16. Tournaments that are illegal or could be viewed as offensive or otherwise inappropriate include, but are not limited to, tournaments that:
Violate laws or regulations
Infringe on Nintendo's intellectual property rights
Use a false licence number
Interfere with the proper operation or impair the safety of Nintendo's products or services
Involve illegally copied or modified game software, game software produced using Nintendo's copyrighted material without Nintendo's authorisation, or game software obtained illegally
Involve cheating, cracking, unauthorised access, circumvention of technical restrictions, unauthorised modification, or use of objects, tools, or services that enable such cheating, cracking, unauthorised access, circumvention of technical restrictions, or unauthorised modification
Use of game consoles, accessories and software not licensed by Nintendo
Use of video, images, sound sources, etc., that cannot be used in regular gameplay, extracted through game software via data mining or other methods
Tournaments that otherwise violate Nintendo’s Community Guidelines
Q17. What exactly are "prohibited items" that cannot be used as prizes?
A17. No goods or services listed below may be offered as prizes at Community Tournaments.
Items that are illegal, offensive, or inappropriate
Illegal products or services, or those that infringe on the rights of third parties
Items that are discriminatory or misleading
Information products such as virtual currency and data
Political activities, or advertising of specific belief systems or ideologies
Any items or services that may prevent the normal operation of our products or services or impair their safety
Any activity that is damaging to Nintendo’s business or brand
Goods or services provided by persons selling or advertising the above items or services
Medicines or items that may affect your health or body
Alcohol, cigarettes and other age-restricted items
Nintendo products that have not launched in the region where the Community Tournament is taking place
Products and services targeted for ages older than the age rating of the software used in the Community Tournament
Weapons and imitation weapons
Note that even within the scope permitted by these guidelines, if there are other restrictions imposed by applicable laws on the provision of goods or the price limits for prizing, you must comply with the conditions of those restrictions.
Q18. Under what circumstances would Nintendo request the cancellation of a Community Tournament?
A18. Nintendo may request the cancellation of any Community Tournaments in its sole discretion, including any tournaments that violate or may violate these guidelines, or that Nintendo deems inappropriate. In addition, Nintendo may request the cancellation of a Community Tournament on behalf of a right holder of intellectual property rights other than Nintendo upon receiving a request from such a right holder.
Q19. I’m planning to organise a game tournament, and I made an announcement about it before these guidelines were released. However, Q14 of the guidelines states that I would need to make a separate application and obtain permission to conduct my tournament. The tournament is scheduled to take place after the effective date of these guidelines. Do I need to make a separate application to obtain permission?
A19. For information on whether or not a separate application is required, please see below:
Tournaments announced before the date of release of these guidelines that will be conducted before the end of 2023: you are not required to make a separate application to obtain permission.
Tournaments announced before the date of release of these guidelines that will be conducted in 2024 or later: you are required to make a separate application to obtain permission.
Tournaments announced after the date of release of these guidelines that will be conducted after the effective date: you are required to make a separate application to obtain permission.