After many raging debates, heated speculation and nerve-wrenching hopes, rumors as to which characters will join the roster of Nintendo's biggest fighting game finally came to an end with the game's release in Japan last month. In the newest entry, released today in Europe, the recipe is no different than in the previous instalments of the fifteen year-old franchise: mix some fan-favourite Nintendo characters with kid-friendly elements of a battle royale, add a pinch of fun, and you have a game that sells one million units in two days during its Japanese release.
Of course, not all characters that ever existed in the Nintendo universe make the cut to jump on stage with classics in the likes of Mario and Link: it's all about playing with characters that are loved all around the world, that keep the game fresh and that make sense in the gameplay of the fighting genre. As a gamer, there are quite a few characters that I would have absolutely loved to see included in this game, but that sadly did not make it to the cartridge. Some of them were, I guess, realistic expectations, and some others... not so realistic (but we can all dream, right?). Without further ado, let's plunge into the world of "everything that could have been" and read about the top 5 characters that, according to my humble opinion, should have been included in the long-awaited Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS!
Let's start with a character that would be tricky to include, but that I would be really excited to play as. Mr Wright is all brains and logic, you see: he is no less than the star attorney from Capcom's Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney series. These are the kind of professorlaytonesque games that focus on the player's ability to interpret clues and solve mysteries rather than action to proceed with a more or less intricate and eventful storyline. In the Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney games, your goal is to help Phoenix do his job by pointing out contradictions in testimonies and spotting the real culprits by dramatically screaming at them the oddly amusing and now iconic:
I have to say, I am a very big fan of these games. I haven't played all of them, as they are only starting to become available in Europe, but I can say that the main character's charisma, the colourful universe, the unique concept and the humour make these games stand out from the crowd. The truth is that I have no idea how Phoenix could use his skills on a battlefield, but I love the character so much that I would have no OBJECTION at all to see him included in the roster somehow.
One of the recurring heroes of Castlevania, one of Nintendo's oldest franchise, Simon has last been playable in Castlevania: Lords of Shadow - Mirror of Fate, released last year on Nintendo 3DS. Simon has everything of a worthy face-kicker already: notorious for sending Dracula back to his grave (no less!), he also likes to use a variety of weapons such as his whip to put creatures like blood-thirsty mummies and giant trolls to rest. We all have our hobbies, right?
Mostly recognizable by their gothic atmosphere, the Castlevania games are, as I mentioned, one of the oldest and most successful platforming games of the big N, so rightly so, in fact, that the franchise has now expanded to multiple platforms. Being one of the highlights of early gaming, I would have been happily surprised to see an thankful nod to this universe in Super Smash Bros. by being able to play one of its most charismatic characters. Besides, talk about a bat-infested castle at night as a stage for combat and you can count me in immediately!
If that isn't the face of Death, I don't know what is
Don't be fooled by appearances - I'm sure this thing could easily squash down any of you. Little is known about this sumo-like character, which comes from the very colourful universe of Pullblox and Fallblox, released in 2011 and 2012 respectively on Nintendo 3DS. In these games, Mallo is the character you take control of to push and shift giant-sized puzzle blocks in order to be able to climb on them and eventually rescue children trapped in these over-large structures. Now, how would you like to have such blocks thrown at your face by a muscly, but slightly cute little creature? Because that is what Mallo would bring to the table in Super Smash Bros. I can really see him use his physical strength to sweep away other characters, while putting his small size to good effect to avoid hits. I have no doubt he would be a blast to play!
From the original game of the same name, released on Game Boy Color in 2002, Shantae is without a single doubt a character you would watch out for on a battlefield. With a sequel released on Nintendo DSi, the Shantae games have been met with acclaim from critics and anticipation from fans for the other sequels to come soon, according to WayForward. What is so special about Shantae, in all the purple-haired, brown-skinned girls in the world?
The answer lies in her greatest weapon - where Link uses his sword to defeat his ennemies, Shantae uses no other than her long purple hair to attack. With a single flip of her head, she is capable of blowing away whatever crosses her path. On top of that - literally extraordinary - ability, Shantae can also summon an inner mystical power to turn herself into a various range of animals, from monkey to elephant, just by belly-dancing. Please don't try this at home - Shantae has the special advantage of being a half-genie, you see. See it for yourselves in the footage below:
I do believe Shantae could be an extremely fun element in the gameplay of Super Smash Bros.: with her unique fighting style, from hair-flipping to conjuring up animals, she has everything to be a pretty powerful opponent on the ring.
N°1: ... Rusty!
Rusty is a relatively new character that made its debut in SteamWorld Dig, a critically acclaimed indie game from Swedish developper Image & Form. Originally released in summer 2013 for Nintendo 3DS, the game has since been celebrated among players for its unique style, addictive gameplay and its clever mix of genres. In what the studio describes as a "platform mining action-adventure game", you are taking control of Rusty, the main character, in his attempt to dig underground to find ores, unknowing of what really lies in the deep... What makes the game so compelling from the beginning, though, is the whole concept of its universe: Rusty and all other humanoïd characters in the game are not humans, but old-school type of robots that work with a steam-based system and that therefore need regular supplies of water. To go further and further in the randomly-generated levels, you don't only need to worry about keeping your system in good working condition, though: you will also have to look for the improvements required for your numerous tools.
What Rusty could bring to Super Smash Bros., should it ever be included, is not only a very original and somewhat lovable character, it's also the richness of a whole universe. Indeed, SteamWorld Dig has a lot of assets to bring: drills, hammer punches, underground or desert stages, etc.
To me, Rusty would be a perfect candidate to join the prestigious roster, and I am sure he would have a lot of tricks up his metallic sleeve to make it to the spotlights as one of the fiercest - and funniest - characters of the game.