If there ever was something that has managed to recreate the familiar feelings of making contact with something you really liked from the old days back into the present, that thing will be Super Smash Bros Ultimate. The first game of the franchise came out nearly 20 years ago in the Nintendo 64. There have been five games in the series to this date, one entry for each new Nintendo Console and all of them have managed to improve everything over the last entry. SSBU is not the exception, but it comes bearing gifts for longtime players. Let’s dive in to learn what this new entry on the saga has for us.
An Old Classic with a New Facelift
Following the basic principle of giving players a game that is easy to play for hard to master, SSBU is undoubtedly designed to have the same effect as Mario Party if you play it with a group of friends in a room: either everyone enjoys the evening, or a civil war will ignite among your friends. The game opens with the classic line up of 8 characters offered in the first game, but the final roster can be expanded to an impressive 60 characters. As the IP has turned out to be more popular with each new entry, third-party companies have licensed their characters to appear on it and make the game a pantheon arena for some of the most famous faces in the gaming world.
The Play Modes
SSBU offers a new gaming mode called “World of Light” akin to story mode in a game such as this. There is a lot of platform elements in this particular gameplay, but it doesn’t feel forced or awkward at all. The designing team certainly took their time to make a story that made sense. You can choose to face the challenges in any fashion you prefer and free the spirits of fellow video game characters to join your side. The catch so far will be the themed version of each challenge that put certain characters in setting you are likely not expecting. It’s a source of originality as well as the way to get some laughs at how Nintendo managed to put so much thought for single players, something that many companies seem eager to drop in favor of full online game experiences.
These “spirits” also seem to the driving force behind the mechanics of most of the game in the rest of the modes. If you keep playing solo, they can be leveled up and do quests by themselves. Spirits can also be used to expand the strength of your character or help him overcome the platform challenges. They can also be migrated to other modes of the game and used to boost your fighting abilities to vs. matches such as the ability to use two final smashes or the option to make any character handle additional jumps midair. The settings can remain customized even if you play online which is sure to bring a lot of fun (and conflict) when you play with your peers IRL or online.
The Little Bumps in the Road
As for options to play co-op SSBU offers online rooms where eight players can have a drawn-out battle royal where the last man standing wins. It can also be done locally if you somehow manage to gather eight friends with controllers in a room. You can also build a tournament with more than eight players fighting on one-on-ones until a champion remains. While most of the modes seem to work pretty well, they rely heavily on good internet connection. The frame rate of the game works pretty slowly with low bandwidths. You better get ready to die a lot if your internet provider is inconsistent.
The last words
Super Smash Bros Ultimate is by no means an original game. We already know how the formula works, but it certainly feels like a welcome addition since this new entry has managed to look so good and up with the times. The inclusion of classic characters such as Sega’s Sonic, Namco’s Pac Man and Capcom’s Street Fighters is a celebration to the popularity of the game and the sing of great things to come in licencing deals for Nintendo, who is willing open to work with third parties in a way that seemed lost in the Wii-U days. Go and grab a copy right now!