Super Smash Bros. Ultimate
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (大乱闘スマッシュブラザーズ SPECIAL, Great Fray Smash Brothers Special) is an upcoming fighting game for the Nintendo Switch. It was first announced on March 8th, 2018 at the end of the Nintendo Direct released the same day. It will be the fifth installment in the Super Smash Bros. series (sixth if both versions of Super Smash Bros. 4 are counted as two games). The game is scheduled to release on December 7, 2018.
The first teaser trailer was revealed at the end of the Nintendo Direct on March 8th, 2018. Without explicitly confirming the playable status of any characters, the teaser trailer hinted that Inklings would be debuting in the game as newcomers, while also suggesting that Mario, Link, and several other series veterans would be returning.
The next two trailers would be unveiled at Nintendo's E3 Direct on June 12th. In the first trailer, several past stages such as Green Greens from Melee and Shadow Moses Island from Brawl would be announced to return as the trailer showed off one or two veterans (sans Inkling) at a time, revealing that Zelda would be based on her Link to the Past design, all the DLC fighters from Smash 4 would return as part of the launch roster, Ike would have both his Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn designs from the two previous games and all the formerly "lost" veterans including Pichu and Young Link from Melee as well as Wolf and Snake from Brawl in addition to the previously leaked Ice Climbers. The game's finalized name was also revealed at the end: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
The third trailer came at the end of the Direct in which Ridley from the Metroid franchise - after several years of being rejected entry into the pantheon of playable fighters because of his immense size - finally "hits the big time" as he joined the roster as a playable character.
All 63 characters (65 if the three different Pokémon of the Pokémon Trainer are treated as individual characters) from all previous Smash Bros. games return as playable characters. Inkling, with various Boy and Girl designs from the original Splatoon, has been confirmed to appear in the game as a playable character. Ridley is also confirmed to be playable, with Meta Ridley as an alternate costume. Playable clone characters are now described as "Echo Fighters" and are marked with an epsilon symbol (ε); Daisy is confirmed to be an Echo Fighter of Peach.
Bold denotes starter characters.
Towards the end of Super Smash Bros. 4's post-launch development, Masahiro Sakurai announced that his next project had been decided and that he would be taking a small vacation following the end of development. Unlike previous Smash titles, which had their development studios built from the ground up, Bandai Namco returned to help develop the game. Prior to starting development, the team had a choice between completely overhauling the game's system and feel or working off of what was established in the last game. The team ultimately went with the latter. Had the team gone with the former, the game would have likely only had a third of its characters. Despite deciding to base the game off of the previous installment, Sakurai still increased the overall speed of the game, but only by an amount that wouldn't be too alienating to people unfamiliar with the series. Sakurai notes that he had wanted to make these changes in previous titles, but was unable to because it was easy for one to lose track of their character's position on screen, especially on the Nintendo 3DS. When Sakurai had revealed to his development team that he intended to bring back every previously playable character, he was met with silence. Prior to leaving Bandai Namco, presumably sometime in 2016, Tiago Sonobe, then a software engineer and graphics programmer for the company, started development on the game's rendering engine. On November 12th, 2017, Nintendo filed a number of trademarks, notably including a Japanese Super Smash Bros. logo.
A Super Smash Bros. title for Nintendo Switch was later officially revealed on March 8th, 2018 via a Nintendo Direct. Shortly after, Sakurai confirmed in a tweet that he had been working on the game "in silence, day after day". On March 22nd, 2018, Nintendo announced the Super Smash Bros. Invitational 2018, a tournament taking place on June 12th where invited professional players will play the upcoming game. Later, in volume 542 of his Famitsu article, Sakurai revealed that his work schedule had been cut down significantly, citing strict regulations regarding work hours. On April 18th, 2018, Nintendo again filed a number of trademarks for several game logos, including the Super Smash Bros. logo. Most of these game logos originate from games with some relationship to the Smash series, including Pikmin, Star Fox, and F-Zero. These trademarks were approved on May 14th, 2018.
The game was finally unveiled at E3 2018 via a Nintendo Direct. The 25-minute trailer featured in the Nintendo Direct confirmed the title of the game as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, revealed that every previously playable character would return, introduced Daisy and Ridley as new playable characters, and showcased new and returning gameplay features. Following the end of the presentation, a Nintendo Treehouse event went live. During the Treehouse event, several matches were streamed and some new features were revealed and discussed. In addition to the Treehouse livestream, a playable demo of the game was opened to the public at E3 2018 and at the Nintendo Store in New York. Following the end of the Splatoon 2 World Championships, the Super Smash Bros. Invitational 2018 began. During the match pitting MkLeo as Bayonetta against Plup as Ridley, Masahiro Sakurai reportedly shook his head after MkLeo had performed a successful ladder combo on Plup. At the end of the invitational, the Nintendo Treehouse livestream resumed, further showcasing more gameplay elements and matches. In addition to this, the official Super Smash Bros. Ultimate website was published. This would serve as the primary source for new details about the game.
Changes from SSB4
As Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is still in development, the information listed below has been taken from the E3 Demo version and gameplay trailers and may be subject to change after the official release of the game.
Menu and UI changes
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