All-star mode is a gameplay mode, available in both Super Smash Bros. Melee and Super Smash Bros. Brawl, that pits the player against every playable character in the game. The character chosen has only one life in this mode.
All-Star Mode made its debut in Super Smash Bros. Melee, as an unlockable 1-player mode which puts the player up against every playable character in the game. The battles consist of a set amount of randomly picked characters teamed against the player, with the last fight being against a team of 25 Mr. Game & Watches. Each opponent faced wears up to 3 of the alternate costumes, with the exception of Mr. Game & Watch, who always wears his default (unless the player uses Mr. Game & Watch in his default costume, in which case the Game & Watches will instead use their red costume). If the player uses a character with an alternate costume and the player faces the same character, the character will either use up to 2 of the alternates, or use the default costume. The characters are fought on the "home stages" of the first member on the list (if there are teams).
In the beginning, the player battle against one opponent. After four battles, the player will battle against two opponents. After eight battles, the player will battle against three opponents until the last fight against Team Mr. Game & Watch.
Unlike Classic Mode and Adventure, the player's percentage does not revert to 0% in between battles; players can only recover health by using one of three Heart Containers available between matches located in the All-Star Teleporter. These Heart Containers, unlike normal containers, heal the player up to 999% (restoring the player to 0%, as they did in the original SSB) instead of only healing 100% damage. However, if the player enters the portal while damage is being healed, then the damage will not heal any further, and the next match will start with the same amount of damage the player had when he or she entered the portal.
While players can use Ness's PSI Magnet and Mr. Game & Watch's Judgement to recover health, there is no other way to recover with the exception of the Heart Containers; items such as food, Maxim Tomatoes, and eggs do not appear at all in the mode.
As a reward, the player can also collect random trophies that appear after the third, sixth, ninth, and twelfth battles.
For characters with a home stage set outside their universe, the stage will have a more appropriate track from their series play; this acts as the only time these tracks can play on these stages. For instance, Pichu's stage is set as Fourside, but the "Battle Theme" plays. The only exception is Ganondorf, in which the normal Brinstar Depths music is played.
In order to unlock All-Star mode, one must unlock every character.
However, instead of the matches having progressively larger enemy teams in random order, the opponents are based on their series of origin. The highest count of enemies on the stage at a time is two. When a series has more than two opponents a new fighter will appear a few seconds after the player KOs one of the opponents. This means that stages for Kid Icarus, Ice Climbers, and Pikmin will be easier than Mario, Legend of Zelda, and Pokémon. In the case of Pokémon, there are a total of six opponents, as the Pokémon Trainer will send out each Pokémon separately. On the Metroid stage, the player will randomly battle Samus or Zero Suit Samus, and on the Zelda stage, they will battle Zelda or Sheik. Another note is that the player doesn't fight a team randomly, but on stages with multiple opponents the order of the opponents is random. It is always in a set order, but the second stage, Mario, the player may fight the four characters in any order. It is chronologically ordered by series first release in Japan. The player will always fight Mr. Game & Watch first and Olimar last. The stage the player fights each character on will be a home stage from Brawl, randomly selected if there are more than one. Battlefield and Final Destination are not considered home stages, while Mario Bros. is R.O.B.'s home stage instead of a Mario home stage. However, if Mario Bros. has not yet been unlocked, he appears in Delfino Plaza instead.
This is the order for All-Star mode:
Clearing the all-star takes about 7-20 minutes depending on the character used, the player's skills, and the difficulty setting chosen.
As a reward for completing this mode, the player will earn their character's a trophy of their character using their Final Smash. Additionally, the player will see an interesting congratulatory picture that plays to what their fighter is. For example, for Snake, it shows Snake in his box with Zero Suit Samus and other various bounty hunters looking for him.
All-Star mode in Brawl may be played with 2 players. When playing co-op, the player receives a total of 5 heart containers, and even if either player dies, the remaining player will get to continue. The opponents are the same until the last battle where the players face 2 Olimars instead of one (a possible nod to Louie from Pikmin 2). One advantage of playing All-Star with 2 players is that if the players both are 2 different characters, beating All-Star will get them the Final Smash trophy for both characters at the same time. However, co-op play will not count towards the Challenges for All-Star Mode, such as clearing it with ten characters.
In Super Smash Bros. Melee
In Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Rest Area Music
All-Star mode is heavily based on Kirby Super Star's Arena. In Melee, the music comes from The Great Cave Offensive Save Room in Kirby Super Star. Interestingly enough, in Kirby Super Star Ultra, this music is used in The Arena between boss fights.
In Brawl, the music is a light, relaxed remix of Brawl's main theme.