​For fans of competitive fighting games, or just fans of the Super Smash Bros. series, EVO is a huge part of each year. The massive tournament has historically been the "Olympics" of fighting games, so to speak, and has been the site of many hype moments that have gone down in FGC history.


But, unlike past years, this year's EVO has seen a very troubling trend in its registration totals. The three highest-entrant games (Super Smash Bros Melee, Super Smash Bros Wii U, and Street Fighter V) saw a drop in attendance of almost half.


With these disturbing statistics, many fans have wondered whether the competitive FGC and Smash communities should be concerned for the future. Though distressing, top Melee competitor Armada gives some reasons why this decline may have happened:

​​His reasoning includes several different factors that may have contributed to Melee's attendance decline this EVO: the lack of a Sunday slot, increased event competition, format issues, and a lack of Street Fighter V interest (leading to less crossover entrants).


For Melee, Armada's reasoning seems entirely rational, and calms some of the smelling hysteria about the health and growth of the scene. For Street Fighter V, the reasons Armada lays out (lack of interest/distaste for the game) are slightly more troubling.


Overall, however, EVO is not a Smash-centric event, and therefore the average competitor experience suffers. This, combined with the growth of Smash majors that cater to the average attendee, can likely explain the drop-off in attendance.


Only time will tell, but this troubling trend seems to be more about Smash attendees exercising their power as consumers than a sign of decline in the scene.