Final Destination (SSBM)
Master Hand and Crazy Hand are fought on this stage in Classic Mode, as well as Bowser and Giga Bowser in Adventure Mode, Roy and any of his teammates in All-Star Mode, and Ganondorf and Mewtwo in their unlock battles. Some event matches, including two All-Star Matches, are also played here.
Final Destination is a flat, medium sized stage, very similar to its Smash 64 counterpart but much larger. It features a single, octagonal solid platform, under which a black orb floats. While having no effect on gameplay, the background of the stage changes during matches; a full cycle lasts about 216 seconds.
Throughout Melee's history, Final Destination has always been a legal stage for tournament play, due to it having no stage hazards and simplistic design that allow for straightforward singles matches. In the modern metagame, it is always one of five starter stages in singles, alongside Yoshi's Story, Battlefield, Dream Land, and Fountain of Dreams.
Final Destination is considered one of the best stages for projectile users and characters with chain grabs, as there are no platforms for opponents to escape to that can allow for alleviation of such pressures. It is also a solid stage choice for characters who have largely grounded neutral game options. On the other hand, Final Destination is a bad stage for characters who rely on platforms to continue combos, or lose defensive options due to the lack of such platforms. Final Destination is considered Ice Climbers' best stage, one of Marth's best stages, and a bad stage for Jigglypuff and Sheik against other top tiers, particularly Fox and Falco. Final Destination is particularly bad for Yoshi, who relies on shield dropping from platforms to make up for the inability to jump out of shield.
Despite the stage's flat layout, the lack of platforms has made Final Destination one of the least balanced stages in competitive play, as it gives certain characters major advantages not seen on other stages. Several characters have their combo game greatly extended on the stage, as the lack of platforms gives opponents less of an opportunity to escape them. In particular, Marth has extensive combos and chain grabs on fastfallers, such as Fox and Falco, which can lead to a KO starting at very low percents. Fox, Pikachu, and Peach, also have their own chain grabs on fastfallers, and Falco has extensive pillar combos on most characters as well. This means that against these characters, getting grabbed can result in a stock loss at near zero percent. Marth players almost always counterpick Foxes to this stage in a best of five tournament set, and at the highest level of play, this counterpick is often considered a highly probable (though not guaranteed) win for the Marth player. The counterpick advantage, combined with Fox's lack of a similar preferred counterpick amongst the other stages, gives Marth an advantage in the matchup.
There is some controversy over Final Destination's status as a neutral stage. Detractors argued that the completely flat geometry gives a disproportionate advantage to the aforementioned projectile and chain grab users, and that the enhanced punish game means that small mistakes become far more consequential (similarly to playing against wobbling). They also argue that the lack of platforms removes many of the game's complex movement options, such as wavelanding and edge cancelling and oversimplifies recoveries, and as such, they vouch that it should be reserved for counterpicks instead. However, Final Destination remains a starter stage at all competitive events.
The Final Destination trophy is unlocked by completing Event 51: The Showdown.
As time passes on this stage, the level appears to travel through a wormhole from the imaginary Super Smash Bros. Melee world into reality. You move through a cloud-filled sky over a vast mountain range, then into a deep-space vista of dark blues and purples. The scenery is as real as you get in this fantastical world.
Names in other languages