Training Mode (トレーニング, Training), or simply Training in Brawl onwards, is a mode available in all games of the Super Smash Bros. series where the player can manipulate overall gameplay of a match and experiment with the CPU without the restrictions of standard Versus Mode. The mode's features, behaviors, and properties vary throughout the series.
As implied by its name, Training Mode is intended to allow players to practice using characters in a non-serious setting. All matches within the mode are actually Time matches of infinite length, as seen on the Jumbotrons featured in the Pokémon Stadium stages. The player can use any character they wish and select one CPU character as their opponent. The CPU's level is fixed at 3 in Smash 64 and 1 in Melee; starting in Brawl, the level can be freely selected much like in standard Versus Mode matches. Any stages available to the player can be used in the mode, including Smash 4's Ω form stages and Ultimate's Battlefield form stages, except for the custom stages in Ultimate for unknown reasons. In Ultimate, Training Mode allows selecting an exclusive stage with a grid that displays exact distances between points.
A new modifier in Ultimate allows drawing of launch distances and trajectories for an attack: a red, green and blue line will display the predicted distance and trajectory for that attack as if it was used against an opponent at 0%, 50%, and 100% damage, respectively. The weight, fall speed, and gravity of the targeted fighter is factored into the predictions as well, allowing for a detailed calculation of how well an attack will perform in any given circumstance. Interestingly, Stale-Move Negation is not present in the mode for Brawl or SSB4, and rage is not present in SSB4; a new modifier in Ultimate allows the player to turn these elements on or off. Additionally, pausing in SSB4 and Ultimate will freeze the stage and relevant hazards, but not characters or items; in Ultimate, attacks will also not connect while the game is paused, effectively making all characters intangible.
Within Training mode, a specialized UI overlay, unavailable in any other mode, is displayed on the screen in order to show data relevant to gameplay. The overlay is always present in Smash 64 and Melee, disabled by default in Brawl, and enabled by default in Smash 4 and Ultimate.
The overlay contains information regarding:
In addition to allowing players to train against an ordinarily idle opponent or to perfect their timing in combos or other advanced techniques, the player has the option of manipulating the environment of the stage or gameplay. Initially limited in Smash 64, modifiers within later games were more advanced.
Modifying the match's parameters requires using a specialized menu accessed by pressing the pause button; while this menu stops the CPU from performing actions, it does not actually pause the battle, and so items on the stage and other stage hazards can potentially harm the player while they apply modifiers. As the Nintendo 3DS has two screens, the bottom touch screen can be used to manipulate the environment without having to pause the game.
The following options are only available in Ultimate:
Ultimate also allows one Figure Player to be used in Training Mode in place of either the player or CPU. However, FPs will not gain any experience, and in the latter case the "No. of CPUs," "CPU Behavior" and "CPU Shuffling" options are disabled.
Character Loading Input Delay
In Brawl, after adding additional CPUs to a match, those CPUs do not function correctly when they are set to Control. It is unclear exactly what causes it, but they do not act on the same frame as another character using the same input, causing both input delays and ignored inputs. Opening and closing the training menu (by pressing the pause button) fixes this until a new CPU is added. This does not occur in any other games.
Combo Counter inaccuracy
There appears to be an issue with the combo count in Smash 4 which is demonstrated in a video by the Beefy Smash Doods, where true combos will not be displayed as combos and vice versa. This is believed to be due to the formula for hitstun being different in training mode than in a regular smash, although it may also involve not being correctly adjusted for hitstun canceling or gravity compensation.
Phantom menu glitch/softlock
For unknown reasons, in Ultimate when the game speed is set to either 2/3 or 1.5x, if the player then attempts to both close the Training menu and open the Move List at the exact same time, the player will regain control of fighters, as though the menu were closed, however the menu will still visibly appear on screen. The menu cannot be interacted with in any way, and there is no way of taking it out of its glitched state. Furthermore, player labels will become stuck in the position they were when the glitch was activated, even if the fighters move, and will disappear entirely once the affected fighters move beyond the stage's camera bounds.
Since the menu cannot be interacted with, and there is no way to end the glitch, it becomes impossible to end the Training session without closing and restarting the game, effectively softlocking it.
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