Quiet possibly the best fighting game of all time has finally arrived, and its on the Nintendo Switch! Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, developed by Bandai Namco Studios and Sora Ltd., contains every playable character from the previous four games in the series and includes several newcomers. In addition to fan favourite modes such as Classic and Special Smash, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate includes several new modes to keep things fresh and the action going.
Let’s take a look at what makes Super Smash Bros. Ultimate one of 2018’s best games.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Details
Platform: Nintendo Switch
Developers: Bandai Namco Studios, Sora Ltd.
Modes: Single-player, multiplayer
ESRB Rating: E10+ (Everyone 10+)
A brand-new single player adventure mode
When it was announced that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate would be getting a single-player adventure mode known as World of Light, I was intrigued. Some of my all-time favourite games are single-player adventure games, so I spent my first few days playing World of Light. Without going into too much detail, essentially the entire roster of characters—except for Kirby—are turned into Spirits by the evil entity known as Galeem.
You initially play as Kirby, and navigate a giant map with predetermined paths as you set out to rescue the captured Spirits and eventually defeat Galeem. There are many branching paths that you can choose from, which will take you down very different paths. Each spot on the map marks a challenge that you must overcome.
As expected, the challenges level of difficulty increases the further you go. These challenges often include perks that your opponents have over you. These range from your opponents starting with weapons, to having more stamina, to moving twice as fast—to name a few. Once you defeat these opponents, they become available to use as you continue your quest. You’ll even encounter blocks in the road that require certain characters to clear the way.
Another aspect of World of Light that I want to talk about are Spirits. These are characters, which give you perks during battle. In addition, as you equip your fighter with a Spirit, you have the ability to add up to three support Spirits. With well over 1,000 Spirits to unlock and discover, the amount of different combinations is virtually endless.
As you might expect, the more you use a Spirit the stronger it becomes. Each Spirit maxes out at level 99 and some only unlock their true potential at this max level. Furthermore, you earn and can buy with in-game currency snacks to feed your Spirits to level them up quicker.
I never thought that I would enjoy World of Light as much as I did. It truly adds a level of replayability to the game that I never thought possible. I’m not going to spoil it, but by the time you complete World of Light you’ll know who truly is the most powerful character in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Every fighter ever featured in the series and more
As I mentioned earlier, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate includes every single character from pervious games and 11 new fighters for a grand total of 74 fighters. Some of the new fighters include King K. Rool, the Inklings from Splatoon, and Ridley from the Metroid series. Though, the entire roster is not available from the very beginning.
When you first start the game, you’ll have access to the original 8 characters that appeared on the Nintendo 64. In order to unlock the rest of the cast of characters, you’ll have to explore and play the many different modes. I really like the idea of unlocking characters this way. It encourages you to try out the many different modes and characters in the game. Furthermore, Nintendo has 6 additional DLC characters planned.
You can purchase these characters individually or by purchasing the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fighter Pass. The first DLC character planned is none other than the Piranha Plant from the Mario series of games. Right now, you can expect to see Piranha Plant sometime around February of 2019. Each additional character will come with a new stage and new music track.
Of the 11 new fighters, 7 of them are Echo Fighters. In a nutshell, Echo Fighters are clone of another fighter. However, Echo Fighters play and have slightly different attributes than who they are an echo of. For example, Ken is Ryu’s Echo Fighter and Daisy is Peach’s Echo Fighter.
What I really like about the Echo Fighters are that they offer enough differences to make them worthwhile. For example, let’s take a look at Ken and Ryu who are both similar. Ryu is more powerful out of the two but moves slower. Overall, this gives you more choice in who you can choose from. Who knows, you may not like a certain fighter but love their Echo Fighter.
Smashing visuals and sound
In addition to superb gameplay, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the best looking in the series to date. While it’s not a giant leap from Super Smash Bros. on the Wii U, the enhanced stages and character models are much more colourful and vivid. Everything looks much brighter and makes for an overall cleaner presentation.
Playing in docked mode on your TV, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate runs at 1080p with a silky smooth 60fps. Playing on the go in portable mode, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate runs at 720p and 60fps. In both modes there are minor hiccups when the battle gets intense with 8 players. Though, the majority of the time not only does the game look great, it runs fantastic too.
One of the things I realized when playing Super Smash Bros. Ultimate was its fantastic soundtrack. It has quite possibly the best sound track in any fighting game ever. It has well over 800 tracks and contains some of the most beloved and familiar theme songs from a wide selection of video games. And, for the first time, songs are not tied to specific stages. That means you can customize and listen to whatever you want on any stage.
Local and Online Multiplayer modes
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate allows you to play with up to 8 players at once on a Nintendo Switch console and 2 to 4 players with local wireless play. Having played both ways I can see either way offers a great experience with no issues at all. However, many people are wondering about the game’s online mode, and that’s a totally different story altogether.
Online mode allows you to earn tags, which you can trade or in-game currency. This allows you to buy new music, Spirits and even Mii Fighter costumes. In all honesty, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s online experience is far from perfect. That being said, it’s also not that bad either, it can definitely use some improvement.
Aside from the occasional lag that occurs, I found that the game had a hard time matching me up with the particular settings I wanted. For example, if I wanted to find opponents online and battle it out without any items, I would sometimes get thrown into a match that clear has items. Recently, a new update 1.2.0 was released and although it does alleviate some of these problems, it’s only slightly.
Additional Gameplay Modes
As you can tell, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is not light on content. In addition to the Classic mode that the series is known for, there is a 32-player tournament mode that allows you to battle it out to see who the ultimate player is. Furthermore, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate features a mode called Squad Strike.
In this mode you can battle it out with either 3v3, or 5v5 using one character at a time. As your characters get eliminated, you switch to the next fighter in your squad. However, one of my favourite modes in the game as from World of Light is Smashdown, a part of Special Smash.
In this mode you play a series of battles as you go through the roster. Once you use a character it will not be available for the next round. There is a training mode to practice and sharpen your skills and Spirit Board, which is separate from World of Light.
Spirit Board allows you to get powerful spirits. If you want the particular spirit you will have to defeat the fighter that is possessing it and play a mini-game. What makes it interesting is that you can use any character that you have unlocked outside of World of Light.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the absolute must have game on the Switch this year
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is one of the best and most fun fighting games that I have ever played. Not only is the game accessible so that everyone can play, it also features deep rich and complex gameplay for long-time and hardcore competitive fans. The amount of content included in the game is simply amazing.
You get 74 characters, 103 stages, and over 8 different modes of gameplay. When I think about it, the level of detail and the amount of work that has been put into this game boggles my mind. If I could only recommend one must-have Nintendo Switch game this year, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate would be it. This is a game that appeals to every type of gamer.
Let me know in the comments section below who your favourite fighter or fighters are in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
+ Every single character and stage from previous games are include in addition to new ones
+ The most accessible game in the series to date
+ Amazing replayability
+ Ultimate Party game to play with family and friends
+ New single-player adventure mode is just as fun as other modes
– Online multiplayer needs some work
OVERALL ASSESSMENT OF SUPER SMASH BROS. ULTIMATE
Lasting Appeal/Replayability: 5/5
Overall Rating 4.9/5 (98%)
Purchase Super Smash Bros Ultimate for Nintendo Switch
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Buy Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fighters Pass for Nintendo Switch Digital Download