Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (known in Japan as Dairantou Smash Brothers SPECIAL, loosely translated to "Great Melee Smash Brothers Special") is a 2.5D crossover platformer-fighting game developed by both Bandai Namco and Sora and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch worldwide on December 7, 2018.
The fifth installment of the Super Smash Bros. series (and the sequel to Super Smash Bros. for Wii U / Nintendo 3DS), Ultimate features the largest roster to date (including all characters and stages from all previous games in the series), with over 100 stages (and their Omega and new Battlefield variants) playable and over 800 songs in its soundtrack.
The game includes numerous gameplay and aesthetic changes (including updated UI, the ability to disable stage hazards, music tracks being organized by series rather than by stage, and an optional Final Smash meter that fills over time), along with new bonus game modes, a new single-player campaign mode (with the new "Spirits" system), and updated online matchmaking. The Character Customization feature of the previous game has been removed (with the exception of Mii Fighters, who now have a more limited version of the feature).
This game's version of Adventure Mode, also called "World of Light", involves a mysterious being named Galeem using the power of the Master Hand to consume the universe and rebuild it under its image (the "World of Light"). Other than the sole survivor (Kirby), all of the universe's inhabitants have been turned into "Spirits", who have been forced to puppet clones of the universe's strongest fighters (who have been put on stasis).
The game's base roster includes 72 playable characters (76 if counting all three Pokémon Trainer characters and all three Mii Fighter variants as separate characters). More will be added as downloadable content.
All playable characters from the series' history have returned, with Charizard reverted to being part of Pokémon Trainer. In addition, the game includes new characters (including some from Konami's Castlevania series and Atlus's Persona series) and a new classification of characters: Echo Fighters. Building upon the "clone character" concept from previous games, Echo Fighters have most of the same moves and properties as other characters (for example, Dark Pit is now classified as an Echo Fighter to Pit).
Unlike previous games of the series, Ultimate has most of the characters locked from the start (with the original 8 unlocked). Players can unlock new characters by either playing VS. matches, by clearing Classic Mode with other characters, or by encountering them in Adventure Mode. Mii Fighters are unique in that they are only unlocked by creating them in the Create Mii Fighters mode.
- Joker (guest character, Persona) - Added on April 17, 2019.
- Hero (guest character, Dragon Quest) - Based on the main protagonist from Dragon Quest XI: Echoes of an Elusive Age. Alternatively, players can play as the main protagonist from other Dragon Quest games (Dragon Warrior III, Dragon Warrior IV, or Dragon Quest VIII: Journey of the Cursed King) using alternate costumes. Added on July 30, 2019.
- Banjo & Kazooie (guest character, Banjo-Kazooie) - Added on September 4, 2019.
- Terry (guest character, Fatal Fury) - Added on November 6, 2019.
- Byleth (Fire Emblem) - Added on January 28, 2020. Alternatively, players can play as the female Byleth using alternate costumes.
Fighters Pass Vol. 2
- Min Min (ARMS) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
- Piranha Plant (Mario) - Known as Packun Flower in the Japanese version. Added on January 29, 2019. Free to those who registered their copy of the game before January 31, 2019.
- Mario (Mario) - Unlocked from the start. Alternate costumes include his Builder outfit (from Super Mario Maker) and Wedding outfit (from Super Mario Odyssey).
- Donkey Kong (Donkey Kong) - Unlocked from the start.
- Link (The Legend of Zelda) - Unlocked from the start. Based on his "Champion's Tunic" appearance in The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, with his traditional "Hero of the Wild" appearance as alternate costumes.
- Samus (Metroid) - Unlocked from the start.
- Yoshi (Yoshi) - Unlocked from the start. Alternate costumes include his appearance in Yoshi's Crafted World.
- Kirby (Kirby) - Unlocked from the start.
- Fox (Star Fox) - Unlocked from the start.
- Pikachu (Pokémon) - Unlocked from the start. Alternate costumes include a female Pikachu and Pikachu Libre (from Pokémon Omega Ruby/Alpha Sapphire).
- Luigi (Mario) - Plays similarly to Mario.
- Ness (Earthbound)
- Captain Falcon (F-Zero)
- Jigglypuff (Pokémon) - Known as Purin in the Japanese version.
- Peach (Mario)
- Bowser (Mario) - Known as Koopa in the Japanese version.
- Ice Climbers (Ice Climber) - Known as Ice Climber in the Japanese version. Players control one character (Popo) with a second character (Nana) tagging along for attacks. Alternatively, players can play as Nana (with Popo tagging along) as alternate costumes.
- Sheik (The Legend of Zelda)
- Zelda (The Legend of Zelda)
- Dr. Mario (Dr. Mario) - Plays similarly to Mario.
- Pichu (Pokémon) - Plays similarly to Pikachu.
- Falco (Star Fox) - Plays similarly to Fox.
- Marth (Fire Emblem)
- Young Link (The Legend of Zelda) - Plays similarly to Link.
- Ganondorf (The Legend of Zelda) - Plays similarly to Captain Falcon.
- Mewtwo (Pokémon)
- Roy (Fire Emblem) - Plays similarly to Marth.
- Mr. Game & Watch (Game & Watch)
- Meta Knight (Kirby)
- Pit (Kid Icarus)
- Zero Suit Samus (Metroid) - Alternate costumes include her "Ending Casualware" appearances.
- Wario (Wario) - Based on his appearance in the WarioWare series, with his appearance in the Mario and Wario series as alternate costumes.
- Snake (guest character, Metal Gear)
- Ike (Fire Emblem) - Based on his appearance in Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance, with his appearance in Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn as alternate costumes.
- Pokémon Trainer (Pokémon) - Based on his "Generation I" appearance. Alternatively, players can play as the female Pokémon Trainer using alternate costumes. Rather than fight directly, players instead switch between three Pokémon (Squirtle, Ivysaur, and Charizard) using their "Pokémon Change" down special. In single-player modes, some opponents can just be one of the three Pokémon.
- Diddy Kong (Donkey Kong)
- Lucas (Earthbound) - Plays similarly to Ness.
- Sonic (guest character, Sonic the Hedgehog)
- King Dedede (Kirby) - Known as Dedede in the Japanese version.
- Olimar (Pikmin) - Known as Pikmin & Olimar in the Japanese version. Alternatively, players can now play as Alph using alternate costumes.
- Lucario (Pokémon)
- R.O.B. (R.O.B.) - Known as Robot in the Japanese version.
- Toon Link (The Legend of Zelda) - Plays similarly to Link.
- Wolf (Star Fox) - Plays similarly to Fox.
- Villager (Animal Crossing) - Known as Murabito in the Japanese version. The outfits, face style, and hairstyle can be changed using alternate costumes.
- Mega Man (guest character, Mega Man) - Known as Rockman in the Japanese version.
- Wii Fit Trainer (Wii Fit) - Alternatively, players can play as the male Wii Fit Trainer using alternate costumes.
- Rosalina & Luma (Mario) - Known as Rosetta & Chiko in the Japanese version. Players control one character (Rosalina) with a second character (Luma) tagging along for attacks.
- Little Mac (Punch-Out) - Alternate costumes include his training wear and a wireframe design (based on the original Punch Out!!)
- Greninja (Pokémon) - Known as Gekkouga in the Japanese version.
- Mii Fighter (Mii Maker) - Customizable fighters that require use of the character customization tool prior to playing (and unlocked from the start). Has three special variants (Brawler, Swordfighter, and Gunner). While they can now be played in all online modes, they cannot be used in Classic Mode.
- Palutena (Kid Icarus)
- Pac-Man (guest character, Pac-Man)
- Robin (Fire Emblem) - Known as Reflet in the Japanese version. Based on his default appearance. Alternatively, players can play as the default female Robin using alternate costumes.
- Shulk (guest character, Xenoblade) - Alternate costumes include his "Swimsuit" appearance.
- Bowser Jr. (Mario) - Known as Koopa Jr. in the Japanese version. Rides on his Junior Clown Car. Alternatively, players can play as one of the Koopalings (Larry, Roy, Wendy, Iggy, Morton, Lemmy, or Ludwig) using alternate costumes.
- Duck Hunt (Duck Hunt)
- Lucina (Fire Emblem) - Echo Fighter of Marth.
- Dark Pit (Kid Icarus) - Known as Black Pit in the Japanese version. Echo Fighter of Pit.
- Ryu (guest character, Street Fighter)
- Cloud (guest character, Final Fantasy) - Based on his appearance in Final Fantasy VII, with his appearance in Final Fantasy VII: Advent Children as alternate costumes.
- Corrin (Fire Emblem) - Known as Kamui in the Japanese version. Based on his default appearance. Alternatively, players can play as the default female Corrin using alternate costumes.
- Bayonetta (guest character, Bayonetta) - Based on her appearance in Bayonetta 2, with her appearance in Bayonetta as alternate costumes.
Similar to the bosses from previous games, players cannot defeat these bosses by knocking them off the stage. Instead, they must defeat them by depleting their Stamina.
DLC Mii Fighter Costumes
- Knuckles (Sonic the Hedgehog) - Added on April 17, 2019.
- Martial Artist (Dragon Warrior) - Added on July 30, 2019.
- Team Rocket (Pokémon) - Added on September 4, 2019.
- Ryo Sakazaki (Art of Fighting) - Added on November 6, 2019.
- Iori Yagami (The King of Fighters) - Added on November 6, 2019.
- Akira Yuki (Virtua Fighter) - Added on November 6, 2019.
- Jacky Bryant (Virtua Fighter) - Added on November 6, 2019.
- Ninjara (ARMS) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
- Heihachi (Tekken) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
- Callie (Splatoon) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
- Tails (Sonic the Hedgehog) - Added on April 17, 2019.
- Proto Man (Mega Man) - Added on September 4, 2019.
- Sans (Undertale) - Added on September 4, 2019, includes bonus soundtrack.
- X (Mega Man X) - Added on January 28, 2020.
- MegaMan.EXE (Mega Man Battle Network) - Added on January 28, 2020.
- Cuphead (Cuphead) - Added on January 28, 2020, includes bonus soundtrack.
- Marie (Splatoon) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
- Vault Boy (Fallout) - Will be added on June 29, 2020.
All Types (Headgear)
Mechanically, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is very similar to previous entries. Players fight with a variety of basic and special moves in order to build up the opponent's damage and send them off the screen. Final Smashes return as each character's most devastating attack. Some have been modified to be more cinematic and quicker. Instead of using the Smash Ball item, players can opt for weaker Final Smashes that charge over time.
The standard, traditional game mode. Up to eight players can fight together in free-for-all battles or on teams with a suite of options for rule customization.
When playing this mode, players now select their preferred ruleset, then the stage, and finally their characters.
Players fight with special modifiers to their fighters.
Up to 32 players compete in a tournament bracket automatically created by the game.
A 5-on-5 or 3-on-3 showdown. Players use consecutive fighters in an elimination style mode. When one fighter is KO'd, the next one takes its place.
Each fighter can only be used once before they are no longer selectable for future battles.
The original single-player mode. Each character has a set, themed sequence of fights leading to the boss, unlike previous entries where Classic Mode was randomized and always ended with a battle against Master Hand.
Rulesets are also variable between characters- for example, Ryu's classic mode features only 1-on-1 stamina matches to evoke the Street Fighter series.
The incarnation of Multi-Man Smash from past games. This is also where the All-Star Mode of this game lies - all currently available fighters will spawn endlessly.
An improved version of the training mode that now shows more technical data for moves.
In-game achievements that offer various rewards on completion.
Spirits mode takes aspects of trophies, custom moves, events and stickers from past games. Hundreds of spirits representing characters from Nintendo games (and the third-party franchises) can be collected and used to boost the abilities of fighters. Spirits have rarity levels, and can give additional buffs when equipped. They can also be leveled up, combined, and sent on expeditions.
To earn a spirit, players fight a match that is intended to invoke some aspects of the spirit's personality. This can include COM behavior, items, and other special effects. For example, the Guts Man spirit pits the player against a giant Mega Man who uses throw moves often.
Spirits can also be used in battles with other players.
Adventure Mode - World of Light
While Ultimate's adventure mode has much less story than Brawl's Subspace Emissary, it still has some context as to why everyone became spirits. A godlike being, using an army of Master Hands, attacks the world. The smash fighters are unable to stop it, and they, along with the rest of the universe, lose their physical forms and become spirits. Only Kirby manages to escape, and finds himself in a new world where the other fighters have once again been corrupted.
In the game mode, players travel through several overworld maps fighting battles to reclaim spirits. Those spirits can be used to progress and explore more of the map. When a player wins a battle against a puppet fighter, that fighter is unlocked and joins the team. The mode goes through several locales, including outer space.
Online battles return with some notable changes. Matchmaking is no longer separated into "For Fun" and "For Glory" modes. Instead, players select their preferred rules for matches. The game will attempt to match players with similar settings. Matchmaking is also determined in part by Global Smash Power, a number representing how good the player is.
Once a player has a high enough Global Smash Power, they can play Elite Smash, a place where the best of the best can fight. The results of these battles will impact balance changes to the game made in the future.
Players can also make online tags, and earn the tags of opponents they beat. Other options include spectating matches, forming a two-player team, and creating online lobbies where they can set the rules and play with friends.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate contains 103 stages from gaming history, most of them returning from previous games. Each stage can be reconfigured into layouts resembling Final Destination and Battlefield, for close to 300 possibilities overall. Even Masahiro Sakurai admitted "we must be crazy" to include so many stages.
For stages from the original Super Smash Bros., the team wanted to preserve the feeling of nostalgic 64-bit visuals and sound. For all other stages, the environments have been vastly overhauled for modern graphics and lighting.
Stages are also listed in the order they first appeared in the series. However, in a series first, every stage is unlocked from the beginning, and each supports up to eight player battles. Players can also activate a Stage Morph feature, where any two stages can transition between each other.
Each DLC character (other than Piranha Plant) comes bundled with an additional stage and accompanying music.
Super Smash Bros. (N64)
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U/Nintendo 3DS
The Super Smash Bros. series is known for its chaotic items which can change the flow of matches, and Ultimate is no exception. Ultimate also sees the return of Assist Trophies and Poké balls, items that summon another character to aid the player who used it. The roster of possible characters has also grown from past games, with 55 Pokémon and 59 Assist Trophies. Assist Trophies can now be KO'd, which adds a point to the score of the player who did so. As always, these items and the many others in the game can be turned off at will.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate makes history with over 800 music tracks (around 28 hours) available to listen while playing the game. The My Music function returns, allowing players to adjust how often individual songs play on each stage. In past games, each stage had its own exclusive group of songs. In Ultimate, however, a stage can play any track from its own franchise.
The game also contains a sort of music player for the songs in game. Music can be organized into custom playlists. Players can then listen to music with earbuds when the Switch is in sleep mode. Despite the astronomical amount of music in Ultimate, Sakurai remarked that compression technology has advanced so that music only takes up a fourth of the space it did in the previous game.
Notably, the music staff was given nearly free reign to arrange whatever franchises they chose. As a result, Castlevania and Mega Man have many new songs, while franchises like WarioWare and Bayonetta were not so lucky. Final Fantasy's music is still limited to two songs ripped from Final Fantasy VII, likely due to rights complications.
Additional music is included in the DLC packs.
New Original Music
- Lifelight (JP)
- Final Destination
- Mob Smash
- Classic Mode: Mural
- Classic Mode: Defeat
- Classic Mode: Final Results
- Classic Mode: Bonus Stage
- Master Hand
- Crazy Hand
- Master Hand / Crazy Hand
- The Light Realm: Prologue
- The Light Realm: March
- The Light Realm: Base
- The Dark Realm
- The Dark Realm: Mysterious Space
- The Final Battle
- The Final Battle: After the Transformation
- Galeem / Dharkon
- Main Theme Piano Solo
- Free the Spirit!
- Spirits: Collection
- Spirits: Inventory/Items
- Tourney: Battle List
- Tourney: Winner Announcement
- Practice Fights
Super Smash Bros. series:
Donkey Kong series:
The Legend of Zelda series
- Battle! (Steven) - Pokémon Omega Ruby / Pokémon Alpha Sapphire
- Battle! (Lorekeeper Zinnia) - Pokémon Omega Ruby / Pokémon Alpha Sapphire
- Battle! (Wild Pokémon) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- Battle! (Trainer) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- Battle! (Island Kahuna) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- Battle! (Gladion) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- Battle! (Elite Four) / Battle! (Solgaleo / Lunala) - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- The Battle at the Summit! - Pokémon Sun / Pokémon Moon
- Big Blue - F-Zero
- Sand Ocean - F-Zero
- Medley - F-Zero
Fire Emblem series:
Animal Crossing series:
Wii Fit series:
- Splattack! - Splatoon
- Seaskape - Splatoon
- Now or Never! - Splatoon
- Bomb Rush Blush - Splatoon
Metal Gear series:
Mega Man series:
- Guts Man Stage - Mega Man
- Ice Man Stage - Mega Man
- Bomb Man Stage - Mega Man
- Fire Man Stage - Mega Man
- Metal Man Stage - Mega Man 2
- Crash Man Stage - Mega Man 2
- Flash Man Stage - Mega Man 2
- Wood Man Stage - Mega Man 2
- Hard Man Stage - Mega Man 3
- Top Man Stage - Mega Man 3
- Medley - Mega Man 4
- Gravity Man Stage - Mega Man 5
- Napalm Man Stage - Mega Man 5
- Dark Man Stage - Mega Man 5
- We're Robots (Dr. Wily Stage 2) - Mega Man 9
- Opening Stage - Mega Man X
Street Fighter series:
Other Nintendo series:
Mario Kart series:
- Excitebike - Mario Kart 8
- Dragon Driftway - Mario Kart 8
- Ice Ice Outpost - Mario Kart 8
Donkey Kong series:
The Legend of Zelda series:
Star Fox series:
- Corneria - Star Fox Zero
- Sector Ω - Star Fox Zero
- Return to Corneria - Star Fox Zero
- Sand Ocean - F-Zero
- Silence - F-Zero
- Port Town - F-Zero
- White Land - F-Zero
- White Land II - F-Zero
- Fire Field - F-Zero
Fire Emblem series:
- Those Who Challenge Gods - Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
- March to Deliverance - Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
- Lord of a Dead Empire - Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
- The Scions' Dance in Purgatory - Fire Emblem Echoes: Shadows of Valentia
- The Keeper of the Lake - Hey! Pikmin
- Fragment of Hope - Hey! Pikmin
- Flashes of Fear - Hey! Pikmin
- Over Wintry Mountains - Hey! Pikmin
Animal Crossing series:
Wii Fit series:
- Advanced Step - Wii Fit
- Yoga - Wii Fit
- Splattack! - Splatoon
- Ink or Sink - Splatoon
- Kraken Up - Splatoon
- Metalopod - Splatoon
- Split & Splat - Splatoon
- Now or Never! - Splatoon
- Now or Never! (Splatfest Version) - Splatoon
- Ink Me Up - Splatoon
- Octoweaponry - Splatoon
- I Am Octavio - Splatoon
- Calamari Inkantation - Splatoon
- Now or Never! - Splatoon 2
- Now or Never! (Splatfest Version) - Splatoon 2
- Inkoming! - Splatoon 2
- Rip Entry - Splatoon 2
- Undertow - Splatoon 2
- Don't Slip - Splatoon 2
- Endolphin Surge - Splatoon 2
- Ebb & Flow - Splatoon 2
- Acid Hues - Splatoon 2
- Muck Warfare - Splatoon 2
- Deluge Dirge - Splatoon 2
Metal Gear series:
Sonic the Hedgehog series:
- Lights, Camera, Action! (Studiopolis Zone Act 1) - Sonic Mania
- Fist Bump - Sonic Forces
- Sunset Heights - Sonic Forces
- Battle!! - Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Those Who Stand Against Our Path - Xenoblade Chronicles 2
- Still, Move Forward! - Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Mega Man series:
Street Fighter series:
All of the following have two versions: "Type A" (from Street Fighter II: The World Warrior and its CPS-1 Arcade variants) and "Type B" (from Super Street Fighter II: The New Challengers and its CPS-2 Arcade variants). The Type A versions of "T. Hawk Stage", "Fei Long Stage", "Dee Jay Stage", and "Cammy Stage" are based on the CPS-1 versions in the console versions of Hyper Street Fighter II: The Anniversary Edition.
- Player Select
- E. Honda Stage
- Chun-Li Stage
- Blanka Stage
- Zangief Stage
- Guile Stage
- Dhalsim Stage
- Balrog Stage
- Vega Stage
- Sagat Stage
- M. Bison Stage
- T. Hawk Stage
- Fei Long Stage
- Dee Jay Stage
- Cammy Stage
- Dwelling of Doom - Castlevania II: Simon's Quest
- Simon Belmont Theme - Super Castlevania IV
- Jet Black Incursion - Castlevania: Dawn of Sorrow
- Hail from the Past - Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin
- Jail of Jewel - Castlevania: Portrait of Ruin
- Vampire Killer - Castlevania Judgment
- Mad Forest - Castlevania Judgment
- Dance of Illusions - Castlevania Judgment
- Dracula's Castle - Castlevania Judgment
- Simon Belmont's Theme - Akumajou Dracula: The Arcade
- Black Night - Akumajou Dracula: The Arcade
- Nothing to Lose - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Can't Wait Until Night - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Slash - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- The Tragic Prince - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Ruined Castle Gallery - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Crash in the Dark Night - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Ripped Silence - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Twilight Stigmata - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Jet Black Wings - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Go! Getsu Fuma - Castlevania: Harmony of Despair
- Battle Hymn of the Soul - Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3
- Mass Destruction - Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 3
- Reach Out To The Truth - Shin Megami Tensei: Persona 4
- Time To Make History - Persona 4 Golden
- Last Surprise - Persona 5
- Our Beginning - Persona 5
- Rivers In The Desert - Persona 5
- Wake Up, Get Up, Get Out There - Persona 5
Other Nintendo series:
Removed from Previous Installment