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Brawling game incorporates diverse stages, characters

Smash Bros Ultimate allows players to take control of some of the most memorable characters of Japanese-made games. These characters include Mario, Kirby, Samus, Zelda, Pac-Man, and Sonic. The fact that this game boasts the highest pre-order rate of any other game in the Smash Bros series testifies to its popularity. 

Super Smash Bros Ultimate released for the Nintendo Switch on Dec. 7, 2018. As the 5th installment of the series, plenty of fans were eager to pick up the game, including my brother.

The game features an possibility of 8 players at one time. The game also features over 75 playable characters, which in the first installment, only 12 characters were available. This all happened in a span of 19 years, with the first installment, Super Smash Bros, released in 1999.

Julia Fikse | The Feather Online

Mario (right) and Ridley (left) are some of the characters players use in-game.

To summarize the game, players select their character and a stage, then begin the battle. With customizable game modes, they play timed modes, scored modes, or free-for-alls.

Ultimate also contains a story mode. The plot shares the same story being told across all of the installments of Smash Bros.

In the past story modes, there existed 2 main enemies, Master Hand and Crazy Hand, each in the form of a massive, sentient, glove.

As The Game Theorists figured out and Nintendo confirmed on Twitter, these gloves represent the creative and destructive forces driving the mind of Smash Bros creator, Masahiro Sakurai.  

Before Ultimate, I only played Smash Bros Brawl for the Nintendo Wii. Using that game to compare to Ultimate, I see the improvements. The character roster includes a ginormous amount of playable characters. Brawl only featured 35 fighters, whereas Ultimate more than doubles that number.  

However, in Ultimate, the main antagonist, Galeem, a glowing orb with silver wings and an army of Master Hands, uses light beams to make corrupt replicas of the fighters. There also stands another antagonist, Dharkon, a dark, evil eyeball with tentacles and an army of Crazy Hands. In the story mode, Galleem and Dharkon battle for control of the characters.

The Game Theorists also figured that that Galleem represents Nintendo wanting to make money off of (corrupt) the franchise. They also depicted Dharkon as the Smash Bros fanbase, wanting to depict the characters how they see them, not how the company sees them.

As players see in the story, the characters become endangered because of the battle between Galleem and Dharkon. The Game Theorists based all this on evidence confirmed by Nintendo. However, this theory in itself remains unconfirmed by Nintendo as of this time.

I could go on and on about the story mode, but the whole game deserves a part too. In smash mode, up to eight players choose any of their unlocked players and battle each other. (Fighters become unlocked by completing story mode, performing classic levels, and beating locked characters in periodic matches.) Players face a not so complicated control layout.

Players mainly use the joystick on the controllers. The joystick controls movement and the direction of attacks. The the A and B buttons control the execution of attacks. Pushing A makes your fighter basic attack, these include punches, jabs, and kicks. The button B executes special attacks unique to the player’s character.

Ultimate is only available for the Switch, Nintendo’s newest gaming system.

The fighting moves that force Smash Bros to live up to its name consist of smash attacks. These charged moves deal a massive amount of damage.

Smash attacks, controlled by pressing and holding on the joystick or buttons, send opponents flying off the arena. Each character contains a unique skill set that takes practice to master.

Playing over the weekend with my brother, I discovered that players should play with items at a moderate spawn rate. We played with the high setting for a little while, and visible chaos becomes apparent, due to overflowing items. Various items perform various functions.

These include healing yourself, summoning an ally for a brief period, and random weapon drops such as lazars, explosives, and melee weapons.

Ultimate contains 103 stages (arenas) unlocked for the player. These stages, based on different games that the fighters come from, vary from castles and space ships to boxing rings and living rooms.

A large number of stages create a drop off on the edges where characters fall off. Others interact with the fighters and perform actions such as breaking, moving, or targeting characters.

Overall, the game combines memorable characters and a great competition among friends. The wide variety of fighters and stages create a ever changing experience.

The story mode also makes playing alone entertaining. Super Smash Bros Ultimate is only available for the Nintendo Switch. People purchase the game from the Nintendo eshop and in most retailers where electronics are bought.   

I recommend this game to anyone who wants to experience friendly competition with friends and family. With many different characters to express the players’ personality and play style, Ultimate is a blast for kids and adults. With the possibility of 8 players at one time, this game stands as a great party game.

For more articles, read Compete With Peers, Avoid Comparison and Holiday Christmas Studios Features Innovative Christmas  

Brayden Iest can be reached via Twitter and email.   

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