List of Super Smash Bros. series characters
A character is one of the fighters in the Super Smash Bros. series. Characters can be sorted into playable and non-playable, which distinguishes whether characters can be used without the use of a cheat device (like Action Replay) or not. Playable characters can further be divided into starter and unlockable, which distinguishes whether characters can be played right away, or whether they need to be unlocked.
This is a list of the playable characters in the Super Smash Bros. series. Shaded cells denote unlockable characters. Yellow tildes indicate a character has yet to be confirmed or denied for Super Smash Bros. 4.
Note that for every character in Super Smash Bros. 4, it is currently unknown whether they are going to be starter or unlockable.
The following characters are considered non-playable. These include boss characters and enemy teams, among others. Hacking may allow some level of play. As no such characters are confirmed for SSB4, this list will not have such a column.
*While Giant DK and Metal Mario were unplayable in the original Super Smash Bros., they are effectively playable in Melee and Brawl by picking up a Super Mushroom or a Metal Box, respectively.
**Giga Bowser is playable in Brawl as Bowser's Final Smash.
***Master Hand is playable in Melee through the Name Entry glitch.
****Sandbag is mechanically considered an item in Brawl, not a character.
Newcomers and Veterans
A Newcomer is a playable character in the series who has been introduced in a particular game, but did not exist in previous installments. By contrast, a Veteran is a character who returns in new games after appearing as a playable character in previous games. Note that the definition of newcomers is distinct from that of unlockable, or secret characters, which are playable characters who must be unlocked by completing certain tasks.
The term newcomer was used to describe the unlockable characters in the original Super Smash Bros. It was later used in the first trailer for Super Smash Bros. Brawl, in which new characters were introduced with the title "Newcomer" atop the screen. The word newcomer was later used on the Smash Bros. DOJO!! site to classify new characters that were not secret. However, the use of the term has since broadened and is now understood in the context of both Melee and Brawl. For example, Peach is considered a veteran fighter in Brawl, but a newcomer in Melee.
Less commonly, "veterans" can also denote the "eight regulars", "perfect attendance fighters" or "the original 8", terms which refer to the eight starter characters in the original Super Smash Bros. These fighters are also present as playable characters in both Melee and Brawl. The first two terms originated in the description for the 10th Brawl event match All-Star Battle Regulars, as follows.
"The original 8", and by extension "the original 12" are fan coined terms, the latter referring to the entire playable cast of the original Smash Bros.