Since its first appearance on the Nintendo 64, Super Smash Bros. has given players the chance to beat the living daylights out of each other as their favourite Nintendo characters. With the release of each new iteration, the roster has steadily grown, eventually including fighters from some of your favourite games. With each new entry came new stages, gameplay modes and improvements. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate feels like a culmination of everything that came before, a glorious amalgamation of the best that the franchise has to offer.
For those unfamiliar with the Super Smash Bros. franchise the games, in a nutshell, pits up to 8 players against each other as they try to smash their opponents out of the arena by raising their percentage meter. The higher your meter percentage the easier it becomes for your opponent to launch you through the air. Seeing Mario beat up Kirby only for Link to swoop in at the last moment to claim victory can be both jolting and exhilarating at times.
Seeing Mario beat up Kirby only for Link to swoop in at the last moment to claim victory can be both jolting and exhilarating at times.
Now, of course, most fighting games live and die by their roster of unique fighters that players can choose from and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate does not disappoint as there are more than 70 characters to choose from. Granted most of these need to be unlocked, which can be a fairly laborious process, but, still, it’s a massive roster of characters who each feel surprisingly different in how they play. What is most astounding about the roster is that so many characters from such a wide variety of gaming franchises can co-exist in one game. From Pac-Man to Street Fighter and even Metal Gear Solid, there is no doubt that you will find at least one of your favourite gaming icons available here.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s new solo mode is called World of Light and, instead of feeling like a shoehorned-in mode to appease those who want to have a more focused solo experience, it actually is one of the best new additions to the game. Players take control of Nintendo’s pink puffball Kirby as he sets out to save the Super Smash Bros. realm from an evil force who has possessed his friends. Your goal is to travel across beautifully hand-drawn 2D map facing off against possessed versions of your friends in order to save them by beating them up.
As Kirby travels across the map beating up other characters, he’ll unlock new characters. More importantly, he’ll also be unlocking Spirits. These Spirits form part of a new gameplay mechanic in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The non-playable spirits are “equipped” by a playable character and give them specific attributes in battle. There are two types of Spirits, primary and secondary.
These Spirits form part of a new gameplay mechanic in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
The primary Spirits affect how much base speed, attack, defence, etc. you will have for each match, while the secondary Spirits grants you specific powers such as being immune to lava or getting an extra high jump. Equipping these Spirits made each battle feel unique and fresh. Your Spirits are also tied to the rewards you get after each match as equipping a weaker Spirit can unlock greater rewards should you be victorious.
Each of these Spirits can be levelled up as players progress through the mode. It’s a fun addition to the franchise and one that feels just different enough to keep players coming back for more. I was first concerned that this mode would end up feeling repetitive but, thanks to some truly creative battle scenarios, each new encounter felt for the most part fresh and exciting.
For those looking for a more multiplayer focused experience, there is a slew of new multiplayer modes, including:
- Custom Smash – which allows you to add your own modifiers to matches.
- Squad Strike – which is a 3 vs 3 or 5 vs 5 team fight.
- Tournament mode – which allows players to create a tournament bracket based on which characters they choose.
- Smashdown – where players go through an entire roster in a series of fights and once a character has been used they become unavailable to be used again.
- Training mode – where you can practice your skills.
There’s more than enough here to keep even the most avid multiplayer fans occupied for hours on end.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a feast for the senses, with some striking visuals, an amazing soundtrack and fast-paced gameplay, it ensures hours of fun not just for fans of the franchise but for new players as well. Sure, it can get chaotic during 8 player matches but that chaos is part of the fun as you try to dodge your opponents and land your hits. In my opinion, it is the best game in the series so far.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
While Super Smash Bros. Ultimate doesn’t set out to reinvent the wheel, it does feel like a combination of the best elements from previous versions.
- Fun single player mode
- Huge roster of characters
- Addictive gameplay
- Matches can get chaotic at times
- Storyline 0%
- Gameplay 0%
- Graphics 0%
- Replay Value 0%
- Sound and Music 0%