Castle Siege (攻城戦, Castle Siege) is a Fire Emblem stage in Super Smash Bros. Brawl and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, first revealed for Brawl at E3 2006. It is based upon themes and motifs from the series as a whole, rather than one particular title, due to the stage not resembling any game of the series. The stage takes place at an unnamed castle, transitioning between the castle's roof, its throne room, and an underground lava cavern.
The match begins on a small section of the roof of the castle, which has two elevated platforms. The castle itself is being bombarded with catapulted fireballs, but these do not affect the match.
After forty seconds, the ground begins to rumble, and the stage transitions into the throne room of the castle. It is a walk-off, as the floor reaches both of the lateral blast lines. There are four platforms, two of which are supported by statues. These statues can be attacked, and each one will break if it takes enough damage, which destroys the platform it is supporting.
After forty seconds in the throne room, the ground begins rumbling again, and the stage transitions to an underground cavern. It consists of a single large stone platform which balances on a stone spire, tilting in both directions.
After forty seconds in the underground cavern, the ground begins to rumble once more, as the stage transitions back to the first segment on the castle roof, and the cycle repeats.
While the stage is transitioning between segments, it is a walk-off. This can have the effect of saving a character who would have been otherwise unable to recover, as the ground comes from beneath. This is particularly useful for Bowser players attempting a stalled Flying Slam or Ganondorf players attempting a stalled aerial Flame Choke, among others. However, players must make sure to move to the center of the stage if it is not transitioning to the throne room, as when the stage is done transitioning, players that are on the sides of the ground will fall rapidly with the ground, easily causing a self-destruct.
The main platform takes the design of the first segment of the stage, the castle roof. The stage does not change.
This stage is usually a starter, but is sometimes a counterpick because of the statues blocking projectiles in the second level, limiting approach options for characters like Mario and Falco. The second level also has walk-off edges, allowing easy and/or early KOs, such as a high knockback attack being able to finish off an opponent at stupendously lower percentages than normal when near the blast line, or characters with chaingrabs that involve walking or dashing being able to drag an opponent past the blast line (as with all stages involving walk-off blast lines), such as King Dedede with his down throw or Ice Climbers with their chaingrabs.
In Smash 4
Castle Siege was formerly included in rulesets as a counterpick, due to chaingrabs being non-existent and therefore not being abusable on the walk-off edges on the second level. However, as the second level's statues severely increased hitlag and blocked projectiles, and the second level itself had a massive top blast line and greatly benefitted characters with notoriously bad recoveries (such as Little Mac), it was seen as too strong of a counterpick and has been banned in major rulesets since GENESIS 3.
Throughout the entire Fire Emblem series the main objective for most chapters is to seize a castle. This is more than likely where the name of this stage came from. Official artwork from the Fire Emblem games has depicted castles as being immense and often surrounded by forests. The capital of Archanea is also depicted similarly in Fire Emblem: Monshou no Nazo. This stage in Brawl and SSB for Wii U has a castle that is designed after various castles in the Fire Emblem series' artworks and the castle also has some resemblance to the one in the anime. The castle is also surrounded by many forests, as is common in the series (where forest regions provide extra defense for units). Another motif throughout the Fire Emblem series is that many of the villains are that of a dragon race, or use dragons and wyverns commonly in battle. The symbol depicted on the flags in this stage is a dragon. This symbol is particularly similar to the flag of Daein as well as Dolhr, the main antagonistic nation in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon respectively, although it shares distinct differences from both.
In various Fire Emblem games, Ballista appear as ranged weapons. Specific varieties known as Hoistflamme (ファイアーガン, Fire Gun) and Pachyderm (エレファント, Elephant) are used by a class known as Ballisticians in Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi, Fire Emblem: Monshou no Nazo and Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon. These are projectile weapons that launch flaming or explosive missiles at their targets. The weapons in the background of the stage are presumably similar, but are described as catapults, and are launching fireballs rather than explosives. Catapult weapons are known as Stonehoist (ストーンヘッジ, Stone Hedge) or Onagers in Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn, although they do not specifically fire fireballs in the games.
This stage depicts a large knight sitting on the throne in the background of the stage. The sprite for this knight is known as "gene_10" in the code of the game, a shortened version of "General". Many of the major chapters in the Fire Emblem series happen indoors where the protagonist is trying to seize the throne that is usually guarded by a powerful boss. This boss is usually a powerful class such as a General, which is a slow unit with high defensive and offensive capabilities. The first castle interior chapter in Fire Emblem: Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi, the original Fire Emblem game, included a General (then known as しょうぐん, Shogun) called Emereus as a boss on the throne. This General also bears a strong resemblance to the Black Knight, a very prominent character in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn and is a deadly rival to Ike. The Black Knight was also a General class in Path of Radiance, but there are significant differences in the design of this General and the Black Knight.
Soldiers wearing red armor appear throughout the indoor area. The opposing armies in Fire Emblem games traditionally wear red armor. These soldiers wear full body armor and wield swords. The design of these soldiers is similar to that of enemy Knight units in Path of Radiance, and various soldiers seen in the Begnion army in Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn. Armor Knights very rarely wield swords, and usually use lances, so it is also possible that they represent dismounted Cavaliers.
Fire Emblem: Genealogy of Holy-War was the first Fire Emblem to feature a background during conversations. One of the backgrounds resembles the entire indoor room of this stage. Fire Emblem: Fuuin no Tsurugi was the first Fire Emblem to have destructible terrain. For example, a wall has a certain amount of HP when the player attacks the wall enough to where the HP reaches zero the wall crumbles. The statues in this stage could be a reference to the destructible material.
Fire Emblem: Fuuin no Tsurugi introduced stages that exist in underground areas surrounded by magma. Ever since Fuuin no Tsurugi, with the exception of Path of Radiance, there has been an underground stage filled with lava. The last area of Castle Siege is designed to represent one of these areas.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U
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