Super Smash Bros., known in Japan as Nintendo All-Star! Dairantou Smash Brothers (ニンテンドウオールスター! 大乱闘スマッシュブラザーズ), often shortened to "Smash 64", "SSB" or "SSB64", is the first game of the Super Smash Bros. series. It is the only Super Smash Bros. game to be rated E, while the other two games are rated T according to ESRB. As a relatively low-budget game with an unusual concept, there were not originally any plans to export the game outside Japan. Only the game's unexpected popularity led to its worldwide release.
The game was released in Japan on January 21, 1999, in North America on April 26, 1999, and in Europe on November 19, 1999. The game is playable on Nintendo 64 and the iQue Player and is available on the Wii's Virtual Console. The European Virtual Console version was released on June 12th 2009, and the American Virtual Console version was released on December 21, 2009.
Every time the opening movie plays, the two characters Master Hand picks who appear fighting on a mountain-top at the beginning of the movie varies. If certain secret characters have not been unlocked yet, they appear as silhouettes.
According to a page on the Japanese Super Smash Bros. site, Mewtwo, Bowser, and King Dedede were all planned to be playable, but were cut, though no other information is available. Bowser would later be playable in Melee, Brawl, and Smash 4, Mewtwo would be playable in Melee, and King Dedede would be playable in Brawl and Smash 4. There have been rumors that other characters were supposed to be included in the game as well, but no official source exists to confirm these rumors.
Unlike Melee, Super Smash Bros. never enjoyed a large professional competitive scene, but interest in Super Smash Bros. has been renewed in recent years with the popularity of Melee and Brawl. Players can play Super Smash Bros. online through Kaillera using the Project64k emulator. However, there have been more and more tournaments of Super Smash Bros. recently due to an influx of new players. Most Super Smash Bros. tournaments are paired up with Melee or long events and most (offline) SSB tournaments are located in California, Central Canada, or New Jersey.
The standard tournament rules differ little from that of Melee. The most common standard tournament rules are as follows:
Generally best 2 out of 3 (using 3 out of 5 or sometimes 4 out of 7 for finals)
Mushroom Kingdom, Sector Z, and Yoshi's Island are usually banned: Mushroom Kingdom for pipe spamming/edge camping, Yoshi's Island for cloud camping and projectile camping, and Sector Z for the size and the Arwing lasers. Planet Zebes is sometimes banned as well, for the acid.
The loser of each match picks the stage for the next match excluding the illegal stages listed above.
If Saffron City is selected on the first round and one of the players is using Ness, he or she may request a re-pick.
However, if the Ness player wins the match, his/her opponent may counterpick Saffron City.
The loser cannot choose a stage on which a previous match was played (known as "Dave's stupid rule"). Due to the low number of allowed stages in this game, this is often weakened to the loser cannot choose the stage on which the last match was played.
For the first match, characters are chosen double-blind - at the same time, so that neither player knows their opponent's character beforehand.
Players may re-pick characters after each match. However, the loser of each match gets to pick last (known as slob picks).
Super Smash Bros. was a commercial success, selling 5 million copies worldwide with 2.93 million sold in the United States and 1.97 million copies sold in Japan. It was the 5th best selling game for the Nintendo 64. Reviews were mostly positive, with many critics praising the game's addictive and fun multiplayer gameplay and simple controls, but it was criticized as well, mainly due to the game's lack of content and somewhat limited single player mode.
The starting eight characters are placed in the order of when they first appeared in their respective titles on the character selection screen, starting with the oldest, Mario and Donkey Kong, and leading to the most recent, Pikachu.
However, because of the placing of the unlockable characters on the sides of the character selection screen, Luigi gets listed first before Mario and Donkey Kong, despite the fact he debuted 2 years after Mario and Donkey Kong's debuts. The same is true for Ness next to Yoshi, only it's a four-year difference.
Nevertheless, the four unlockable characters are placed in chronological order of first appearance relative to each other. Luigi (1983), Captain Falcon (1990), Ness (1994), and Jigglypuff (1996) appear in this order left to right, top to bottom, occupying the four corners of the character selection screen.
This is the only time Samus and Ness appeared on the Nintendo 64.
When a character is chosen, they perform a brief animation in their player's display box below the character-select array. This is the only game in the series to have this feature.
This is the only game to feature playable protagonists only. However, two characters had previously appeared as antagonists -- Donkey Kong in Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong 3 and Mario in Donkey Kong Jr.
One piece of Super Smash Bros.-themed merchandise was a model car. This car was released by diecast toy car company Team Lightning, and was given the full name of Tom Daniel's "Trouble Maker" - Super Smash Bros. (1971 Chevrolet El Camino). These cars can still be purchased via online stores such as eBay.
In Japan, the game's Virtual Console release was one day before the series' tenth anniversary.
Super Smash Bros. is the only game to use the phrases "Game Set" and "Time Up" in matches in both English and Japanese versions. Melee and Brawl uses the phrases "Game!" and "Time!" in the English version, both still use "Game Set" and "Time Up" in the Japanese version.
This is because Super Smash Bros. (as well as the rest of the series) was originally planned to be Japan-only.
This is the only game not to have the smash symbol in the logo for the "O" in the non-Japanese release.
Samus is the only definite female character in the game, as Pokémon were not considered gendered at the time of this game. But the other nine characters are all male.