BY JOHN CARTER JR
Super Smash Bros Ultimate was released in late 2018 and months after it still stands as one of the most highly anticipated video games in terms of its expanded downloadable content. As one of Nintendo’s most highly rewarding properties in terms of the income that it brings to the company, the amount of advertising it gives its viewership, and the perpetual hype surrounding its fanbase, Super Smash Bros Ultimate has a way of uniting groups of people to have fun in a party-esque fighting game. The game does this through an interesting marketing campaign with character inclusions being a main focal point and by capitalizing on the approachable nature of the game.
Speaking of characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate, there are over 70 and they are continuing to grow. There’s a character for every fan of nearly any franchise, but also has characters that didn’t have anything to do with Nintendo before now. More so, the game features characters from franchises that are less known in the library of Nintendo’s intellectual properties. If you’re looking for a Nintendo character — Mario, Pikachu, Link, Kirby, Donkey Kong, Samus, Fox, and many more characters are available to choose from. If you are looking for a less popularized Nintendo franchise characters like Ness, Captain Falcon, Pit, and Ice Climbers are also available to choose from. Outside of the scope of Nintendo, fan-favorite characters such as Pac-Man, Ryu, Simon Belmont, Mega Man, and Sonic the Hedgehog make appearances.
Nintendo has recently been flexing its muscles through its console, the “Switch”, using these ingenious marketing campaigns, and its various video game franchises to get people excited. For Super Smash Bros Ultimate a tagline that was often associated with the series for many months is the “Everyone Is Here” line that was spoken by Masahiro Sakurai at its launch trailer. This was to announce to the world that every character that is ever appeared in Super Smash Bros history would be appearing in Super Smash Bros Ultimate. This is an amazing feat given how many licenses had to be acquired to retrieve all of the third party characters for Super Smash Bros Ultimate. The development time it took to create and recreate all the characters from Super Smash Bros history was definitely an undertaking or at least that’s how it appeared to be.
While that promise of bringing everyone here to the Super Smash Bros Ultimate roster rung true and is quite an impressive feat, not all the bosses were brought back. A good handful of bosses, however, were selected for the video game creating exciting additions. Leading the fans to speculate that potential former bosses, like Porky from the mother franchise, might return as a DLC character. Maybe there will be future downloadable content, free or otherwise, that will include more bosses and more modes. There is already a 3.0 update and that added a few extra additions to the game. Examples of the Bosses that players have the opportunity of facing include the Rathalos, from the Monster Hunter franchise and Ganondorf’s Ocarina of Time Beast form.
Other new concepts added to the Super Smash Bros franchise include taking characters often seen as clone rip-offs and making them into their own concept called Echo Fighters. These act as semi skins of previously established characters with a few adjustments, save for Peach and Daisy. Characters like Lucina and Dark Pit from previous games were attributed to this title. Characters like Ganondorf and Dr. Mario were not, however.
New Characters under the echo fighter banner have also been added including Daisy, Dark Samus, Ken (the original echo fighter), and Chrom for example. This concept definitely benefits the overall excitement and creative fun for the game making an opportunity for many different matchups that you never thought would be possible. That, however, has always been the crazy idea behind Super Smash Bros, in that you can have a crazy purple space pirate, Ridley, fighting and electric mouse from the Kanto region, Pikachu.
Super Smash Bros Ultimate had its pre-order bonus released but when it was announced audiences were confused as to why it was included. Yes, you can play as a potted plant in this video game. The Piranha Plant took the world by storm, it’s crazy aesthetic and reaction from the fan base that made them think “Why did Mr. Sakurai choose a common Mario enemy as a playable fighter in Super Smash Bros Ultimate?” He would later say a fitting comment at a tournament event “Piranha Plant is sick”. The inclusion of the piranha plant character, whom I love, would become a meme that on the level of the “Everyone Is here” line. #plantgang
When the announcement of Joker happened at the Game Awards 2018, fans were surprised to see that a franchise often associated with the PlayStation would be making its way, in the form of downloadable content for Smash Bros, to the Nintendo Switch console. Yes, Persona games had been included on Nintendo consoles before but not on their home consoles. Moreso, it was interesting to see that a PlayStation exclusive game character was included in Nintendo’s biggest crossover ever. This eventually led to announcements of a Hyrule Warriors-esque Musou game appearing on the Nintendo Switch, but in the vein of Persona this time. The Super Smash Bros franchise really lives up to its potential in terms of its ability to properly market and campaign for many different franchises.
When the character, Joker, was finally released, it was a hit with the fans, very much so living up to the aesthetic of the original Persona 5 game. The DLC Pack 1 from the fighters pass included Joker, his persona Arsene, Morgana and the Phantom thieves of hearts as NPCs in the background (in taunts and his Final Smash as well), music tracks, and a stage that’s has a vibrant aesthetic in its ability to change colors according to music. This just gives us a taste of what the fighters pass has to offer in terms of the content for Super Smash Bros Ultimate. If this is the standard for DLC, the team behind it will be delivering on major satisfaction to its patronage throughout the game’s life cycle. Furthermore, they’re showing that they will never be a game like Super Smash Bros Ultimate again and there never will be a franchise as great at doing Smash as Smash Bros does.
In conclusion, the Super Smash Bros Ultimate Game is one of Nintendo’s greatest games of all time. That isn’t just a melodramatic statement. It has proven this time and time again by pulling fans together, by making money, and its ability to intrigue potential fans in what Nintendo has to offer. Super Smash Bros Ultimate is a creative fun hodgepodge of interesting characters, all from unique backgrounds and storylines. It allows people to fight it out with characters ranging from Mario to Persona 5’s Joker. It is truly an Ultimate Game, living up to its title.
I give Super Smash Bros ultimate to 10 out of 10 for its excellent roster, world, and gameplay.