Super Smash Bros. (64) in competitive play
The original Super Smash Bros. competitive scene did not start at the initial release of the game, unlike all of its successors. In fact, the first Smash Bros. did not develop almost any community at all until Melee was released two years later as a breakout sequel. Only then did the newborn Smash tournament scene have small groups of people take a second look at the 64 version.
The first offline Smash 64 tournament in the US that could be considered a national was FC Diamond, held in 2007, because it featured a larger than normal influx of players and spectators alike and was the largest US Smash 64 tournament for a few years. Japan had a bigger scene with the annual Kanto and Kansai tournaments always gathering 50-150 players since 2010.
Since 2012 and the inclusion at Apex 2012, the scene began to grow. Apex 2013 was the first tournament with Japanese top players in attendance, with Kikoushi winning that event. Apex 2015 was the last Apex with Smash 64 and also had the highest number of participants (188).
Besides Apex, the next biggest events were the Zenith 2013 and Zenith 2014 tournaments. The US tournaments were dominated by the Canadian SuPeRbOoMfAn, Isai and occasionally entering players from Japan (most notably Kikoushi and Moyashi).
In 2015, the Super Smash Con series was born and its sequels would become the biggest Smash 64 tournaments. In 2016, the GENESIS series returned and GENESIS 3 and Super Smash Con 2016 were the first tournaments with over 200 entrants. Super Smash Con 2016 was also the first US tournament to be attended by Peruvian top player Alvin, who would soon become a major threat at US tournaments. At the end of 2016, 64 League Rankings, the first global power rankings for Smash 64, were created.
Smash 64 is still a fairly small competitive scene compared to other Super Smash Bros. games, with the largest tournament gathering 314 entrants compared to Melee's 2,372, Smash 4's 2,662, and Ultimate's 3,522, as well as Super Smash Bros. Brawl's 400. Despite its relatively small size, the Smash 64 scene is still considered to be healthy and stable, as a significant number of players dedicate themselves to practicing the game at a serious level, unlike with Brawl and Smash 4.