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~Ephesians 5:16

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Super Smash Bros. for Wii U Review

There are very few fighting game series as more critically acclaimed than Super Smash Bros. The 3DS version released a few months ago. While it was definitely awesome to be able to play Smash on the go, the Wii U version is the one fans truly awaited for; the small console was just a holdover. (Indeed, now that the Wii U version has been out virtually no one is talking about the 3DS.) Perfect gameplay makes the latest installment perhaps the best yet. I say perhaps because there are quite a few things Brawl and Melee did better. No Adventure Mode and poor number of new stages hurt this game. The multi-player mode however is by far the most fun anyone can have. If you have at least two other people to play with, and with items on, it's endless amount of hours of fantastic fun.

The core thing about Super Smash is the frantic, on-the-go strategy, item-grabbing gameplay. The Wii U version is pretty much perfect in this category. The gameplay isn't quite as fast as Melee, but definitely slightly quicker than Brawl, finding a nice balance between the two. The items are at their best; from whacking people with the Ore Club to trying desperately to gain another life with the Rally-X Flag, playing with items and with friends will create unforgettable battles and laughs. What the game does not shine in is its questionable new modes...

In the 3DS version of the game, there's "Smash Run" which is pretty mediocre after you've played it a couple of times. Thankfully, that was a 3DS exclusive. Sadly, the Wii U's mode is even worse in the form of "Smash Tour." After playing it once you will never want to play it again. The goal was to make this installment in the franchise more party-like and happy I suppose, but that aspect failed miserably. "The Subspace Emissary" from Brawl was an excellent change of pace for fighting games because they usually don't offer cutscene-driven story modes. It upped the bar, and few games since have raised it. Unfortunately, this game is one of them. Adding to the disappointment is the inclusion of a couple of new modes: "Master Orders" and "Crazy Orders." These modes, like Smash Tour, don't serve much of a purpose once you play them at least once. "Boring" would be the word to describe these new inclusions.
The Wii U version has the same characters as the 3DS one, so same positives and negatives apply. New additions like Pac-Man and Rosalina are excellent, but with however questionable decisions like adding Dark Pit (could have been a palette swap of Pit, same with Marth and Lucina) and not another Metroid character. (Interesting how we get Dark Pit but not Dark Samus who has been the antagonist of two games.) The stage selection is a pretty disappointing factor. There's nothing wrong with the new ones, most of them are quite excellent. (Except Mario Galaxy, which is immensely disappointing.) The problem is that there's almost as much old ones as new ones. Some have called this game "Super Smash Bros. Brawl 2.0," and that title is definitely justifiable in this category.

While the game has a lot less lag issues online, it's still present, which is a great shame. We shouldn't be seeing this on a modern console in 2014. Perhaps the greatest and also most disappointing aspect of the game is the challenges. Like Brawl, Challenge Mode will challenge even the most seasoned of veteran players. The disappointing part is the reward: it's just in-game cash. By the time you actually complete all challenges, there isn't much else to buy! It should have rewarded the player with a new character or at least a stage, but no all it gives you is pretty much useless $. Knowing that ahead of time destroys all motivation to complete them all.

Do not let the past few paragraphs deceive you; Super Smash Bros. is one awesome game. The gameplay is pretty much perfect. Playing with friends and items will result in some of the most unforgettable gaming times. Online for the most part is also great and the player will spend many hours over the course of the year on it. It is however disappointing that the game adds more party-like features while eliminating Adventure Mode. I don't think there's any Smash player who would rather have all these new mediocre modes over it. The stage selection is almost half old ones, which is a big disappointment. But overall the latest installment in Super Smash Bros. is another incredibly fun game that delivers a basically flawless gameplay experience.



  1. I gotta admit, this is one of the best video games of all time! B)

  2. Admittedly...Melee is starting to catch up to this game for me again. I dug it out of the old game drawer and have been having a blast with it. The speed and intensity is definitely second to none and you really feel the blows. I dunno Destroyer...the Wii U may have met its match once more. (I'll seriously purchase a Melee HD version if they do decide to release it on the Wii U. Imagine playing online with that hyper'll be awesome! The odds don't look great for it though)