New Game Offers a Smashing Good Time

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Looks like it’s time to put away your copy of Animal Crossing: New Leaf again; Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS has been released. This much-awaited title was released on October 3rd, 2014, and meets nearly every expectation the huge hype set up for it. Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS fails to disappoint, and is the best title in the series so far.

Gameplay is much like that of Super Smash Bros. Brawl. Choose a fighter, and K.O. your enemies as much as you can, using a variety of special and standard attacks. Many new challengers have been added to the roster, such as Shulk, Mega Man, as well as Rosalina and Luma, even old favourites like Link, Pikachu, and Yoshi return to fight again. The roster of this game is outstanding, and each character brings something unique to the fight. It was discouraging to see fighters such as Lucas and the Ice Climbers removed, but the new additions more than make up for them. Also, now that Zelda, Sheik, Samus, and Zero Suit Samus have been split into separate fighters, they have a wider variety of moves and are more fun to use. However, I am extremely disappointed with how the posing of Zero Suit Samus overly emphasizes her breasts and contributes to the long-standing issue of sexualized women in video games. But maybe that’s a discussion for another day.

A variety of new features have been added in this newest installation of the Super Smash Bros. series, and perhaps one of the most anticipated was the new Smash Run mode. However, Smash Run falls short of expectations. Gameplay in this mode is confusing, and, to be frank, not much fun. I got quite enough of running confusedly in random directions in Super Smash Bros. Brawl’s Subspace Emissary. Many of the same boring enemies have returned as well, such as Roturrets, Glires, and Glices. The new game could’ve done without Smash Run, but I digress. Smash Run is one negative among many positives.

Another new feature is custom fighters. In direct opposition to Smash Run, I feel this is one of the best features in the new game. It’s very useful in battle to be able to customize your fighter to your own style, and Mii Fighters are another fun addition, allowing you to play as anyone you could dream of. These customizable features gives Smash for 3DS a leg up over the previous three titles in the series, and really lets it shine.

New games have been added to the Stadium as well. Although the lack of a traditional Break the Targets is disappointing, its replacement, Target Blast, is also quite enjoyable. Who doesn’t love hurling a bomb towards a wall with as much force as you can?

Edits have also been made to traditional gameplay modes such as Classic, and while I was skeptical of this at first, it is doubtless that they have been improved. The choice of paths in Classic gives you much more freedom to choose your own fight, and lets you avoid challengers you can’t stand. There’s also a wider range of difficulties, so anyone can fight and win. I can see no drawbacks to the changes to Classic mode.

New stages and items have been added as well, with both negatives and positives in this department. Two new stages, Wily Castle and Find Mii, both include huge enemies that appear throughout your battle. These are downright annoying, and it can seriously disrupt a fight to suddenly have half of the stage filled by a pointless challenger. Although the stages themselves aren’t bad, the bosses are certainly something Smash for 3DS could’ve done without. However, many of the new stages make up for this. Living Room has a certain nostalgia about it, and it’s fun and challenging to avoid the falling blocks. Gerudo Valley is another great addition. It’s a nice big space with cool features, such as the breaking bridge, even Koume and Kotake showing up to blast the stage with magic. Although I’m feeling the sting of losing old classics like Pokemon Stadium, others such as Jungle Japes have returned again to soften the blow.

Great new items have also been added, such as the Cucco and the Special Flag, all of which add new and interesting elements to battle. The lineup of items in this Smash game is ideal.
Online play has returned better than ever in this game, with a variety of new modes that allows everyone to fight it out. Choosing the For Fun mode over the For Glory can take off a lot of perceived pressure to do well in online matches. You can also choose to play with only your friends online, if you prefer not to deal with strangers. Overall, nothing more could be asked for in the realm of online play.

However, there is one major drawback to this new game being available on the 3DS. In this game, local multiplayer is much more difficult than in previous SSB games, since your friend will have to have their own 3DS and their own copy of the game if you want to play with them, rather than just grabbing an extra remote. If local multiplayer is more your thing, you may want to wait for the Wii U version of this game to come out if you have to choose one version to buy.

As usual, in Smash mode, the difficulty of opponents is easily adjustable, so anyone can fight to win at their own pace. Despite this, this game is challenging enough for any veteran gamer to enjoy themself in a fight.

As someone who has been playing games in the Super Smash Bros. series since my early childhood, what I mainly have to say about Super Smash Bros. for 3DS is wow. This is an incredible game, and has the potential to give tons of fun to anyone who cares to pick it up. Despite minor drawbacks, this is overall the best game in the SSB series so far, and I would recommend it to any gamer, Nintendo fan or otherwise.