Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was one of the most hyped reveals of this year’s E3 hands-down. Not only did we get a look at a brand-new entry in one of the greatest franchises in gaming, but we saw a tidal wave of new content to boot. So, let’s have a quick rundown of everything new in Smash Ultimate that will be of interest to casual audiences. Don’t worry, we’ll have a detailed breakdown of information for the more competitive information soon.
Easily one of the most enjoyable items in the smash series is the assist trophy. Not only does bringing characters from Nintendo’s past into the fight bolster the series’ appeal as a celebration of the big N, but they can really help turn the tides of a battle too.
Ultimate has toned down the effectiveness of this item somewhat, by making many assist trophies destroyable instead of intangible objects that would leave only after a certain period of time. What’s more, defeating an assist trophy will award players a point, just as if they had killed a player character. Some forward thinking will be needed when it comes to the use of these new assist trophies, as it can be difficult to take the lead when at a point deficit.
Speaking of assist trophies, we have several new ones confirmed. The strangest one is the bird/plant hybrid, the Burrowing Snagret, from the Pikmin series, which stays rooted to the ground, but pecks furiously. Almost as weird is Sukapon, the hero of the quirky Famicom-only fighting game Joy Mecha Fight. This little guy moves around much more than the Snagret and attacks or throws any enemy he finds with his detached limbs à la Rayman.
The most exciting new assist trophy, however, is easily Bomberman. This former Hudson Soft. mascot was heavily requested as a playable character and while seeing him as an item isn't quite the same, having him run around the battlefield dropping bombs with huge cross-shaped blast radiuses is sure to bring smiles to any Bomberman die-hards.
When they’re not getting blown up by him, anyway.
Super Smash Bros. is coming to Nintendo Switch!
The Power That’s Inside
Before assist trophies, a very similar item was present in Smash Bros. via the Pokeballs. They had a much more limited pool of characters since they all had to pull from the Pokémon franchise, but it's always interesting to see how our favorite platform fighting game represents the latest generation of these adorable monsters.
Bewear is the first Alolan Pokémon represented in this game, and it hits enemies with a flying Shoryuken-esque uppercut. It’s difficult to determine what move this is supposed to represent but seeing this adorable Ursine destroy enemies with a violent, fiery punch is both hilarious and intimidating.
Our next Alolan arrival came in the form of Alolan Vulpix. As would be expected from the fondly remembered wolf Pokémon’s ice-type counterpart, it uses Icy Breath to momentarily freeze enemies. On the other end of the spectrum, Solgaleo uses its signature move, Sunsteel Strike, to unleash a far-reaching burning attack. Its fellow legendary Pokémon, Lunala, also appears, shooting its own unique attack, Moongeist Beam, from the background to the foreground. The fact that it performs this attack multiple times makes it easily the scariest new Pokemon to have on your opponent’s side.
Some less complex, but equally interesting, Pokémon include Alolan Raichu, who surfs around shooting thunderbolts and Abra, who teleports players offstage.
New Challengers Approach
Because nobody has really been able to spend much time with the game, we don’t have enough information for a technical, in-depth analysis on the game’s new characters, but we can certainly report on initial fan reactions to them.
The first character announced for Ultimate was The Inkling, the kid, or possibly squid mascot from Nintendo’s team-based shooter Splatoon. Just like in their original game, they’re fast and straightforward with moves that use paint which they must pause to refill once their tank is empty. The more the Inkling covers its opponent in paint, the more damage the latter will receive, so players should focus on landing multiple consecutive hits, instead of individual strong strikes. Luckily, the Inkling’s good range and quick projectiles mean hitting targets will be no problem.
Defying all odds, Metroid’s space pirate dragon Ridley was revealed to be a part of Ultimate via a drop-dead gorgeous pre-rendered animation. As one of the largest fighters in the franchise, with high speed and crazy knockback, he stands out as Smash’s ultimate oppressive force, already making fans lucky enough to have played him in demos fall in love.
Daisy was also confirmed as a clone (referred to in official material as an “echo fighter”) of Princess Peach. We were not told what differences she has and she was not playable in the demo at E3, so as of now there really isn’t much to say about her other than that we’re happy she’s making her long overdue debut in Smash.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is displaying a commitment to bring as much as possible to the table and we’ve still got several months of updates to go before the game is released.
Let us know what you hope to see in Ultimate in the comments and be sure to look out for our competitive look at the changes in the game that’ll be up very soon.