Nintendo conducted a Nintendo Direct presentation dedicated to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate last week and a surprising amount of new information was released.
The company used the live stream to reveal five new characters, a couple of new game modes, an option to listen to the game’s 900 song soundtrack, a ton of new trophies, and announce that there will be 103 stages in total with a feature that will let you transition from one stage to another in the middle of a fight.
Smash’s newest brawlers are Castlevania’s Simon Belmont and Donkey Kong Country’s King K. Rool. The other three characters will be echo fighters Dark Samus, Chrom, and Richter Belmont. Echo fighters are characters that have abilities akin to those of established brawlers but have different appearances, animations, and slight differences in their skills.
Simon Belmont is the main protagonist in Castlevania, a fantasy action-adventure video game based around the Belmont family of vampire slayers and their war with Dracula. Simon’s induction into the ranks of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate isn’t his first appearance outside of Castlevania. The vampire slayer was a popular choice for cameos in other Konami games such as Legend of the Mystical Ninja, Konami Wai Wai World, and Krazy Kart Racing.
During the Nintendo Direct stream, Simon is revealed after a short cinematic that involves Luigi’s unfortunate murder by ghoul. Castlevania fans will be happy to know that Simon will don his sacred Vampire Killer whip, Holy Water, and throw crosses and fists to defeat his foes.
Castlevania’s other Smash character feature, Richter Belmont, appears near the end of Simon’s teaser to assist his relative in fighting off Dracula. He will be Simon’s echo fighter and has a very similar ability set. Richter’s first appearance in the Konami universe came in Castlevania: Rondo of Blood, but became a fan favorite after his role in Castlevania: Symphony of Night. The pair will have their own stage called Dracula’s Castle.
Fans of the Donkey Kong franchise have wanted another character from the series added to the Smash Bros. ranks for a while, specifically King K. Rool. Nintendo went ahead with the fanservice and announced his induction with a cinematic that featured D.K. and friends.
King K. Rool is the main antagonist of the Donkey Kong series and first appeared in Donkey Kong Country on the Super Nintendo. Rool is the ruler of the Kremling race and head of the Kremling Krew. While the dude looks like a giant crocodile he has an obsession for bananas, which makes him the sworn enemy of Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong.
Rool will shoot his signature cannon gun, throw his crown, throw powerful boxing glove punches, and use a combination of belly slams and claw rakes to defeat his enemies.
The other two new echo fighters, Dark Samus and Chrom, shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone as they were also highly requested. They will brawl behind classic Smash characters Samus and Roy and brand very similar moves to the originals. I’m not a big fan of using Metroid in Smash Bros. but Dark Samus sure looks badass.
Aside from the new characters, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will feature Squad Strike battle mode, Tourney mode, Smashdown mode, a new Training mode, and Classic mode. Squad Strike battle mode will allow players to choose between a 5-on-5 or 3-on-3 elimination battle where one player can fight with different consecutive fighters or multiple players can take turns. Tourney mode allows players to construct up to a 32-player tournament, which makes constructing larger Smash battles much easier. Smashdown mode makes it impossible to select a character that was picked in a previous round so one-tricks should probably start practicing.
The new Training mode will give players a special Training stage that displays the typical launch distance and trajectory of the punching bag depending on the damage. And lastly the classic single-player Classic mode, which is basically any other games campaign mode.
There aren’t very many companies that can match Nintendo’s wackiness, but you’ve got to admit that Nintendo Direct gets the job done. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be released on Dec. 7 exclusively on the Nintendo Switch platform. Stay tuned for more information on Smash’s latest installment.