Nintendo News: Smash Ultimate Direct 11/1/2018

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Today, Nintendo released their final Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Direct prior to the game’s release in December. I will supply a summary of what was revealed, with some commentary on what was shown. There is a lot to cover here so let’s get started.

Characters:

  • Ken (Echo fighter for Ryu) (Street Fighter series)
  • Incineroar (Pokemon series)

These two are the last remaining characters for the full game roster, not including DLC (more on that later in the article).

Also of note:

  • The game starts with the 8 characters that were available at the start of the N64 Smash Bros. game.
  • The game features 74 playable characters.
  • It should be noted that a particular “leak” only got Ken correct in terms of the final roster. The number of final characters is lower than what that leak claimed.
  • There is no mention of how to unlock these characters. A previous Direct claimed that the method is streamlined and faster than previous games.

Amiibo: 

  • The Inkling, Ridley, and Wolf Amiibo will be available 12/7/2018
  • King K. Rool and Ice Climbers Amiibo will be available on 2/15/ 2019
  • Isabelle, Pichu, Ken, Young Link, and Daisy Amiibo will be available sometime in 2019

This may be important for some of you, but I will not bother to get additional Amiibo. No additional info on the Amiibo are shown, but those who have been following the game should know what they do already.

Spirits:

Now for a new feature that was speculated to be in this game. Here are the notes on this feature:

  • The collectible trophies from previous games are not in this game!
  • Instead, there are collectible “spirits” of characters from the games related to those in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
  • You can equip these spirits to your playable fighters to power up your character.
  • There are a variety of spirits:
    • Novices (standard power)
    • Advanced ( a bit stronger)
    • Aces (especially powerful)
    • legends (strongest)
  • Each fighter can have one primary spirit equipped at a time. These enhance stats.
  • You can assign support spirits to the primary spirit, depending on the number of slots that primary spirit has. The support spirits add additional skills, such as auto heal, higher jump, etc.
  • You must win “spirit battles” to get more spirits. These battles are found on the spirit board.
  • Each battle is against a fighter powered up by a spirit.
  • Each battle has some unusual conditions.
  • You play a brief mini-game after defeating the spirit to get the spirit. You must shoot the target without hitting the moving barrier. Hitting the barrier makes it easier to get the spirit next time.
  • Each spirit has a type:
    • Attack (good against grab)
    • Grab (good against shield)
    • Shield (good against attack)
  • Spirits can level up in battle when used.
  • You can also feed them snacks to level them up.
  • Some can take enhanced forms by leveling them up.
  • By sending them back to the real world, you can lose a spirit, but get a core in return. These can be used to summon a new spirit.
  • You can train them at a gym.
  • Send them to find treasure.
  • They can train or get treasure passively while you play other modes, or when the game is off.
  • Beat a master spirit to unlock facilities (not sure what facilities are as of this writing).
  • They can power up Amiibos, (no surprise there). You will lose those spirits, though.
  • Final smash meter is always on when fighting a spirit.
  • You are rewarded more when fighting tougher spirits.
  • You can play against other players with spirits as well.

This feature is much more in depth than I had expected, and seems to replace the custom parts and moves from the previous Smash Bros. game.

Local wireless and online play:

  • Online is not separated by for fun or for glory.
  • Matchmaking has these factors:
    • Preferred rules:
      • Solo or co-op
      • Smash, (up to 4 players) Team, or 1 on 1
      • Time, stock, or stamina
      • Time limits
      • Number of lives
      • Stages: All, hazards off, battlefield, or Omega forms
      • Item settings
      • And can preset the rules you prefer
      • The system tries to set up players with similar preferences
    • Global smash power returns as a leader-board and helps with matchmaking.
    • You can have a global smash power score for each fighter too.
    • There are penalties for self destructing, including being disconnected.
    • The proximity of players in real life is another match-making factor. This is for stability purposes.
    • Wired LAN cables are recommended.
  • If global smash power is high enough, you can enter elite battles.
  • Players have tags that can be won by other players.
  • Can assign preset messages on the directional buttons.
  • Can play other modes while waiting on a match.
  • Spectator mode is available.
  • Can play with another player with the same system to team up with them online.
  • Can set up a battle arena to play with friends. Can battle, wait online or spectate.
  • The Nintendo Switch Online App is compatible with this game:
    • Can voice chat in battle arenas.
    • A feature called Smash World allows the sharing of battle videos. Won’t be available at launch

It looks like online has more features than the last Smash Bros. game. It remains to be seen if it runs smoothly after its release.

Assist Trophies:

  • Shadow (Sonic the hedgehog series)
  • Takuma
  • Starman (Earthbound series)
  • Nightmare (Kirby series)
  • Color TV-game 15 (AKA Pong)
  • Yuri Kozukata (Fatal Frame)
  • Isaac (Golden Sun)
  • Black Knight (Fire Emblem series)
  • Thwomp (Mario series)
  • Spring Man (Arms)
  • Wiley Capsule (Mega Man series)
  • Flies and Hand (from the Mario Paint mini-game)
  • Tiki (Fire Emblem Series)
  • Vince (Art Academy)
  • Guile (Street Fighter Series)
  • Akira (Virtua Figher)
  • There are 59 Assist trophies in all, more than the Pokemon in this game.

Yeah, I’m a little disappointed that Isaac isn’t a playable character here, but I’m glad to see him back.

Other Features:

  • There is a help feature.
  • Century smash (Fight 100 opponents in a row). Now allows for stage select.
  • All star mode. Endless fighters from those already unlocked.
  • Can save replays. Can create videos with this feature.
  • Tip menu.
  • Challenge menu is now sorted by category, and you get rewards for completion.
  • Records menu features online and offline records.
  • Can trade smash tags from other players for in game gold.
  • Gold can be used for music, items, and spirits.

These are all neat features, some more crucial than others.

Options:

  • This game supports 11 languages:
    • English
    • French
    • Spanish
    • Italian
    • German
    • Japanese
    • Dutch
    • Russian
    • Chinese (simplified)
    • Chinese (traditional)
    • Korean
  • Brightness and sound adjustments.
  • Radar adjustment for fighters.
  • Teammates semi transparent in wireless and online play.
  • Custom balance (essentially a handicap option) not for wireless and online.
  • Customize the Mii fighter outfits, voice, and moves.
    • New outfits include:
    • Yiga Clan (Zelda)
    • Splatoon 2
    • Ribbon girl (Arms)
    • Chibi Robo
    • Ray MK III (Custom Robo)
    • Toy con

DLC:

There will be new characters and stages via DLC.

  • There won’t be more echo fighters.
  • Each pack comes with 1 fighter, 1 stage, and multiple music tracks (price expected to be $5.99 USD)
  • The fighter’s pass will allow all 5 sets for $24.99 USD.
  • Also, there was a disclaimer that the sets will be released as they become available. All sets will be released through the end of February 2020.
  • The contents of the pass were not fully revealed yet.
  • The fighter’s pass comes with these bonuses:
    • Rex Mii fighter Costume (Xenoblade Chronicles 2)
    • Music from this game.
    • And related Spirit characters.
  • It might take a year or so to make the DLC, won’t be worked on until launch.
  • If you buy the game “now” you get:
    • The Piranha Plant playable character for free, once available.
    •  Might take a couple of months before it is ready.
    • You must register the physical cartridge for gold points, or pre-purchase the digital copy of the game by 1/31/2019. A download code will be emailed to the associated account. Code will expire on 6/30/2019. (according to fine print).
    • Also and Amiibo will be available on 2/15/2019.

I look forward to seeing what the DLC is going to be. The Piranha Plant is unexpected, but there’s usually a strange character somewhere on the roster.

There are some events on the official website to try out all 74 fighters in the game. This applies to the North American region.

And finally, adventure mode is teased. It looks pretty massive, and has a world map, but the exact details may not be available till the game’s release

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