Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Review


Angus Nordlund, Staff Writer

On December 7th, 2018, one of the most anticipated games of the year was released. A game that had been so hyped prior to its release that fans of the series were practically drooling for its enthralling gameplay as well as its large roster of iconic characters.

On December 7th Super Smash Brothers Ultimate was released for the Nintendo Switch.

Super Smash Brothers Ultimate is a fighting game which is the latest installment in a long line of Smash Brothers games, dating back to the original Super Smash Brothers released back in 1999 for the Nintendo 64. The game gives players the chance to pick from a diverse cast of characters from all of Nintendo’s popular games. These include famous characters like Mario (Super Mario Bros.), Link (Legend of Zelda), Kirby (Kirby’s Dream Land), Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong), and Pikachu (Pokemon) to name a few, as well as some characters from games outside of Nintendo’s franchise such as Sonic (Sonic the Hedgehog), Solid Snake (Metal Gear Solid), and the recently announced Joker (Persona 5).

What is special about Ultimate is the fact that every character in the Smash series is in it, with more to be added in the future. This currently puts the roster of fighters at 72+, making it difficult for players to decide their character of choice. However, in the beginning, players only start of with the eight original fighters. Over time, as players battle opponents they will be given the chance to unlock the rest of the roster by beating the character in a 1v1 when they appear on your screen.

When it comes to mechanics, Nintendo has certainly made it a priority, considering how there have been quite a few changes since the last installment, in order to make the gameplay feel smoother, more fluid and overall more fun. For example, dashes, which are used to evade attacks, have become quicker, but at the same time can create problems if you use it too often, in order for it to be balanced.

Freshman Raul Maldonado had this to say about the new mechanics changes to Ultimate,

“One mechanic that I really like about super smash bros ultimate is directional air dodge. This is very useful because you can escape your opponent while you are in the air and you dodge
them inlay the same time if your opponent is trying to get you high percent in damage so they can kill you. Overall the directional air dodge is very useful and a mechanic that showed up in melee and now it’s back for super smash brothers ultimate.”

Though the Smash Bros. series is a popular one, it is unknown to many that it holds a long track record in the E-sports industry. Since the very first Smash Bros. many tournaments have been held for every game in the series each year. However, one problem has become quite evident from all of this. The community is split, mainly into two groups. There’s the older die hard fans of Super Smash Bros. Melee and then there’s the younger generation of newer players who are playing Super Smash Bros. 4 and Super Smash Bros. Brawl.

Many professional players, such as Jason “Mew2King” Zimmerman, have expressed how they would like to see both communities come together under one game. Now, with the introduction of ultimate into the fray, that just might happen. At E3 2018, Nintendo organized a tournament to showcase the game, and invited professional players from both sides of the divide to participate. In total there were eight of the best Melee and Smash 4 players crammed into one tournament fighting just for bragging rights. However, what came out of such a simple tournament was a
look into the future of the game’s competitive scene. The tournament showed the game to be somewhat of a combination of all smash games, whether it be in terms of mechanics, characters, or just the overall play style it takes to master the game, which just might lead to the union of all players who love the franchise.

Though it is too early into Ultimate’s release to see whether the game will be as much of a success as it is predicted to be, or if it will become a popular E-sport like its previous incarnations, the hype surrounding it is sure to grow more and more as new content is added into the game. If the previous games are any indication, then Ultimate is sure to be one of the most successful games of the franchise, and of the fighting game genre.