The news came abruptly as a message on their homepage, which ends with,
“In summary, we are ceasing development of Project M (effective immediately) and will be making no further releases as we turn our attention towards an entirely new venture. As the PMDev team will be formally disbanded, please forward all official communications regarding Project M to video game attorney and business consultant. We appreciate your support and your understanding.”
The mod, which has been around since 2011, was extremely popular amongst competitive fans of Smash Bros, and until the past year was featured in tournaments. With Nintendo officially sponsoring the game at events like Apex and Evo, two major tournaments that put the cult classic alongside powerhouses like Tekken and Marvel vs. Capcom, Project M was forced out, but still remained prevalent in smaller scenes.
The Project M development team has given no word as to why they ended everything so quickly. The most recent update for the game was 3.6 in June 2015.
This has to be a cease and desist from Nintendo, especially when the only contact info being listed is a lawyer. The question is: why? The mod has been around for nearly five years, and Nintendo has clearly known about it. With the upcoming Nintendo Direct centered exclusively on Smash Bros, could this have anything to do with a much pleaded for Super Smash Bros. Melee HD remake?