Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: The Hype is Justified

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Not too long ago, depending on when you are reading this, the holidays passed and with them came a lot of new games. One of them was an addition to the iconic fighting series, Super Smash Brothers. The series, like another I reviewed, is almost a household name in gaming at this point in time. The series was originally made as a commemoration to Nintendo icons back in the late 90’s. Eventually the series blew up and they made four more games after the original: Melee (the favorite), Brawl (the one we hated for not being Melee), Wii U/3ds (The okay one), and recently released Ultimate (the one why everyone is here). The series, as described by developer Masahiro Sakurai, is a mix between a party game and a fighting game.

There are multiple types of gameplay modes and each type also has subtypes. The gameplay modes include Smash, Spirits, and Games & More. Within Smash, there is standard fighting (also called Smash), Squad Strike, where you can have two teams of five or two teams of three duke it out, Tourney, which is a tournament, and Special Smash where you can apply special rules and handicaps to matches to make the game interesting. In Spirits there is a “spirit board” where you fight characters for spirits (which change the stats of characters in combat) and the heavily hyped adventure mode called World of Light. Within Games & More there is Classic mode, training, and Mob Smash.

Now, I am going to talk about all the modes starting with Smash. The sub modes in this mode are great for when your friends are over. Brawl allows you to make your own ruleset, allow spirits for use, and set percent handicaps. Squad strike lets you plan out a team where each time one dies, the next is put into play. This mode is one of the most fun in my opinion, and I’m usually unstoppable when I have a team of my mains. Tourney is, as stated before, a tournament mode; There is nothing that special about it. You can either have a tourney of all players or you can add CPUs to the game. Special has all the perks of normal Smash as well as some other perks. You can apply bunny ears, make everyone metal, or have everyone take constant damage, among other things to tweak.

Spirit mode involves the one mode that everyone saw in the trailers, World of Light. World of Light is somewhat of a story mode where you go around trying to clear dungeons to weaken a greater evil. Now, the plot of the game is very simplistic and doesn’t really progress. A mysterious orb of energy named Galeem appears and the heroes of the Smash Bros. universe must stop it. Sadly, all but one, Kirby, fall to him. The rest of the story is you saving all the other fighters, gaining spirits, and going to defeat Galeem. The fights  range from being easily finished in one hit to a fight that takes multiple hours of retries to finish. After spending multiple days on this mode, it doesn’t really expand. You simply stop Galeem and save the heroes, but that works in its favor. The simplistic story is made stronger by the intense, fast paced gameplay. The other Spirit mode, Spirit Board, is simple. All you do is fight characters with perks to unlock spirits. These spirits could be potentially used for the story mode or Brawl mode.

Classic mode is the best out of the three. Each character has a classic mode that is catered uniquely towards them and at the end they usually have a unique final boss. Mob Smash is a 1 vs 100 or 1 vs infinite mini game where the enemies get progressively harder the farther you progress. Training is self explanatory: You train.

Time to talk about the gameplay. This game is honestly one of the best of the Smash Bros. games in terms of gameplay. It obviously has its S-tier characters and D-tier, but there are more that are in the A-tier and B-tier than ever before. That means that Ultimate is the most balanced game out of the entire series, which is great! You can use a majority of the 72 characters and still stand a chance against someone else. The gameplay itself is more fast paced and intense and barely slows if at all. The only real issue is that Nintendo hasn’t mastered the art of online gameplay, and there is serious lag issues and frame rate drops in online play.

The music in the game is fantastic. It is a mix between music from previous Smash games, music from the characters’ respective games, and new remixes added to the game. My only major issue is that you need to unlock some songs through doing challenges or you need to buy them from the shop. On top of that there are only two Final Fantasy songs that make an appearance in the game which angers me, personally.

The graphics themself are pretty phenomenal. Compared to other Smash games, this one is the best looking out of them all. It has great graphics, usually holds a great frame rate, and the small details are beautiful.

There isn’t really much to say without going into the small, small stuff. Smash Bros. Ultimate is an amazing game as well as one of the best in the franchise. It will get the player enveloped in and stuck playing for hours without even realizing it. It is one of those games that are so addicting it’s ridiculous. I give this game a 9.9 out of 10. It’s amazing, fun, and exhilarating.