Avatar image for sombre
#1 Posted by Sombre (427 posts) -

Hey gang,

Picked up Smash this morning, and played for about 90 minutes? What an insanely fun game RIGHT off the bat. I haven't really played since Smash 3DS, which was pretty fucking terrible because the controls were DICK and it looked terrible.

I'm really enjoying the Switch version so far. I like how the game drip feeds you new characters and unlocks. I've just been casually playing some regular old 3 minute Smash and really having a blast. I think out of the initial 8, I'm favoring Link. I like that you can play as the MM Brave Link, it looks awesome. So far I've unlocked Ness and Zelda, with Bowser and K.Rool in my "Rematch at any time to unlock" function.

I tried a little of the spirits mode, which seems really fun so far. I think I'm gonna take "Villager" as my first of the 3 unlocks.

What about you guys? What do you think so far?

Avatar image for crazycarl
#2 Edited by CrazyCarl (37 posts) -

So far, I'm digging damn near every decision they made. Excellent single player options, love the look, and the progression is fantastic. God damn, I love the music options.

All that said, it appears they've "nintendo'ed" the online functionality. I need more time with it, but I think its going to need more options to play with friends.

Avatar image for bobobones
#4 Edited by BoboBones (266 posts) -

As someone who has played every Smash title but hasn’t been into the series since Mele, I’m ecstatic to jump in deep. It feels like an intense amount love and care went into this package.

Avatar image for bigsocrates
#5 Posted by BigSocrates (1966 posts) -

It feels like what the title says it is. The ultimate (so far) version of Smash. Tons of content, a well-designed and varied single player mode (missing from the last game, at least on 3DS) and just a metric ton of polish. I've played a few hours and it's a lot of fun with the normal problems of a smash game (often hard to see what's going on when there are a ton of characters on screen, sometimes frustrating controls, and the randomness of the items.

All in all it seems like a great package that I will enjoy a lot (especially after I get deeper into the spirit mode and unlock some fighters I actually enjoy using) but going back to the name, I do wonder where they go from here. Maybe the name is accurate and Sakurai really does intend this to be the last Smash game, but it's one of Nintendo's biggest franchises and they're definitely going to want one on the next console.

Avatar image for fram
#6 Edited by Fram (1857 posts) -

This is the first Smash I've really gotten into and it somehow feels overwhelming and approachable at the same time. I'm super impressed so far.

Avatar image for mezza
#7 Edited by MezZa (3048 posts) -

Spent a good 8 hours playing yesterday with a friend. I haven't sat down for more than a couple hours in a row with a game all year. Really enjoying this. My only complaint so far would be the online. They really need to work out something better than "maybe we'll be able to find someone with the same rule set as you, but if not enjoy free for all" when people are paying for a subscription to be able to get online.

Avatar image for the_nubster
#8 Edited by The_Nubster (4180 posts) -

I'm enjoying it a lot so far. Haven't been able to get into a Smash game since Melee (random tripping? no single player mode? trying to play on the 3DS? hahahah good one Nintendo), but this has been great. Hooked up my old mushy GC controllers and I'm having a great time.

My only complaint so far is that some of the Spirit Adventure battles are really fucking insane in stupid ways. This game's idea of difficulty is just putting four CPUs on a small stage, making them favour a directional Special, and boosting launch rates. It's not fun to get caught in four Yoshis doing their Egg Roll into me until one of them KOs me with a Star Rod. Aside from the odd terrible match here and there, though, it's awesome. Looking forward to playing with my partner when she gets home tonight.

Avatar image for seemah
#9 Posted by seemah (136 posts) -

@fram: I’m in the same boat and your feeling sums up my take of the game as well.

I really like what they’ve done with spirits mode. As a newcomer I feel like the team built the play through in a way that forces me to try new strategies and different characters. In turn this teaches me how to be a more rounded player. Really smart and super fun.

Avatar image for magnetphonics
#10 Posted by MagnetPhonics (78 posts) -

@the_nubster: One thing I've noticed with some of the incredibly stupid spirits fights (The Kapp'n one is the worst so far) is that you're supposed to find a spirit that nullifies the effect in one of the earlier battles. However because of how the map branches, you're 90% likely to be going through a section of the map "backwards", thus hitting the hard battles first and then finding the spirits to help out in easy battles later.

I've become jaded on Spirits mode pretty quickly. It started out great, but I've only unlocked 8 or 9 fighters, but have no visible unlock fights that don't require at least 10 random spirit battles in between. I did have one non spirit-battle landmark to aim for, but it turned out to be a doorway to a dungeon with like 10 battles in it. I almost threw my Switch out in disgust.

(And that's not even counting the disappointment after the first cutscene when you realise it's not another Subspace Emissary.)

Avatar image for sombre
#11 Edited by Sombre (427 posts) -

Wew. Unlocking certain characters can be SUPER hard. Falcon and Ryu completely go in raw, no fucking about.

I've also lost to the Jigglypuff, Peach and Marth fights.

Some are INSANE

Avatar image for nnickers
#12 Posted by nnickers (496 posts) -

@magnetphonics: I agree with you about a lot of the map structure and annoying spirit mechanics, but what were you expecting to find in the mode besides battles? And if you're only playing the mode to unlock characters, you can do that through standard fights outside of World of Light mode, too.

Avatar image for the_nubster
#13 Edited by The_Nubster (4180 posts) -

@magnetphonics said:

@the_nubster: One thing I've noticed with some of the incredibly stupid spirits fights (The Kapp'n one is the worst so far) is that you're supposed to find a spirit that nullifies the effect in one of the earlier battles. However because of how the map branches, you're 90% likely to be going through a section of the map "backwards", thus hitting the hard battles first and then finding the spirits to help out in easy battles later.

I've become jaded on Spirits mode pretty quickly. It started out great, but I've only unlocked 8 or 9 fighters, but have no visible unlock fights that don't require at least 10 random spirit battles in between. I did have one non spirit-battle landmark to aim for, but it turned out to be a doorway to a dungeon with like 10 battles in it. I almost threw my Switch out in disgust.

(And that's not even counting the disappointment after the first cutscene when you realise it's not another Subspace Emissary.)

Yup, and even if you have found the support Spirits, having to give up one or two slots to nullifying annoying effects is not a ton of fun. Having the CPUs be immune to poison or fog or flipped screens or gravity, while you have to omit an actually useful spirit to handle it, kinda sucks. The difficulty can also swing wildly even within fights you've already done; I've had spirit fights wreck my shit for 10+ attempts, only to have all of the CPU fighters self-destruct within seconds of a fight starting. It's become little more than a reliable way to unlock fighters for me, and leagues behind what Subspace Emissary was. So many reviews are praising Spirit Adventure as on par with that, but Subspace Emissary was actual authored story content with unique encounters all throughout. This is just Special Smash on a board, and it's way more frustrating because there's progress and grinding involved.

@nnickers: The problem with the unlocks is that there's really no indication of why a new fighter appears or what triggers it. I sometimes have a a new fighter show up every couple of Spirit Board fights, or sometimes I can do that for an hour and have nothing. Ocassionally I'll have new ones pop up during regular Smash, and then not re-appear in the rematch door when I fail against them. I main Link, and i've stopped having fighters appear when I play him a bunch, but they've also stopped appearing in regular Smash when I use new characters as well. I have literally no idea why or how they appear, and I don't understand the reasoning behind which of the new fighters appear behind the rematch door either. Sometimes the door is just not there at all, despite having two or more failed new fighters waiting in the wings. The unlock process is painfully obscure.

(Also I apologise for the underline, the @ function appears broken? Smashed, if you will?)

Avatar image for nnickers
#14 Posted by nnickers (496 posts) -

To be fair, I’d only played the original and Melee before this one and had forgotten that Melee’s single-player had a few platforming levels. I suppose in that sense this is less varied than the campaigns of past.

As for the character unlocks, I’d been thinking they seem to be random.

Avatar image for haneybd87
#15 Edited by haneybd87 (394 posts) -

The last Smash I played was Brawl when it came out so I’m having a really hard time with the controls since it’s been so long. That said I can’t wait to get together with a bunch of friends who will also suck at this game, up to 8 players local sounds pretty awesome.

Anyways my one major gripe so far is the fact that I have to unlock everyone. In my situation where I really only plan on playing with friends a few hours here and there that unlocking process is going to be so slow. I doubt we’ll ever see the full roster and that’s such a bummer. I just don’t see the fun in playing this or other fighting games single player (or online where I’ll get smashed). Nintendo needs to get with the times and just give you the full roster.

Avatar image for mezza
#16 Edited by MezZa (3048 posts) -

For people struggling with unlocking the roster, there is a timer in game for unlocking them through versus matches. Fully close the software and open it again between matches to reset the timer and you'll unlock a character with every match. You may have to actually have a match against AI due to other more mechanical in-game metrics, but other than that you can unlock someone every few minutes with that method. Otherwise play classic mode. Each character unlocks someone different. If you fail the challenge you can rebattle them in challenger's approach which seems to reopen every few matches. Once you have encountered a character you will only be able to battle then through challenger's approach. They will not show up as a challenger again with the versus unlock method.

It's not random and can be manipulated pretty easily. Took me about 4-5 hours to get everyone at a pretty relaxed pace, and would have been faster if I beat everyone on the first try.

Avatar image for inevpatoria
#17 Posted by inevpatoria (7442 posts) -

@sombre said:

Wew. Unlocking certain characters can be SUPER hard. Falcon and Ryu completely go in raw, no fucking about.

I've also lost to the Jigglypuff, Peach and Marth fights.

Some are INSANE

Yeah, apart from really liking the game generally, this is the standout thought I keep having.

By no means am I a savvy Smash player--I played some Smash (64) and Melee, nothing since--but these fights have the feel of artificial difficulty sometimes. If the CPU doesn't want to be hit, it simply won't be. It'll dodge attacks one after the next or will seemingly anticipate an incoming attack and respond with a harder, faster attack in kind.

Now, on one hand, I kind of hate this. It takes me back to those old Mortal Kombat 3 days where the AI got by more on reacting to player inputs than on dynamic play. I'm a pretty flappable player, so I'm liable to get frustrated and call something "cheap" if it's even the least bit suspicious.

On the other, I think it's kind of great, and I'm trying to savor the stakes of every New Challenger fight. Two things are going to happen: I'm going to get better as a Smash player, and eventually, I'm going to unlock every character. Which means, at a point, there will be no more of these New Challengers to fight. Having the unlockable fighters be just a little tougher than average means every victory feels, if not earned, then at least like an achievement. Plus, it is an incentive for me to get better, to think more critically about what I'm doing that isn't strategically sound.

Avatar image for soulcake
#18 Posted by soulcake (2789 posts) -

I never ever liked smash but something about there weird story made me go "hmm let's try this out" I am loving it so far (there weird story mode) i even fought the wii fit yoga mat!!!!!!! I still thinks it's weird that there are two jump buttons but i am getting a sense for it.

Avatar image for haneybd87
#19 Posted by haneybd87 (394 posts) -

@mezza: Honestly that’s 4-5 hours too much single player. I couldn’t care less about the single player. I just want to jump in and start playing with friends with everything unlocked.

Avatar image for mezza
#20 Edited by MezZa (3048 posts) -

@haneybd87: That's fair, and I wasn't disputing that there is effort involved. I was just clarifying the unlock process and what the fastest method is for the couple posts I saw talking about how random it seemed. Ultimately the game makes you engage with it outside of just online multiplayer (local multiplayer will unlock characters), so if that's not a design philosophy you're interested in then they didnt really make that choice with you or others who just want everything right away in mind.

Avatar image for neocalypso
#21 Posted by NeoCalypso (757 posts) -

@mezza: Honestly that’s 4-5 hours too much single player. I couldn’t care less about the single player. I just want to jump in and start playing with friends with everything unlocked.

That's not how smash bros works though and it never has. This opening dozen or so hours of this series has always been about working towards unlocks, be it characters, or stages.

Avatar image for haneybd87
#22 Edited by haneybd87 (394 posts) -

@neocalypso: Yeah and I’m saying they need to get with the times and just have everything unlocked like other fighting games. This is a multiplayer game at its core, they should just let us play the game how we want to instead of going through some nonsense to unlock the characters we want to use. Just because things have always been a certain way isn’t a good reason to keep doing it. If you ask me it was always kind of ridiculous that you had to unlock characters in a multiplayer game. It’s unnecessary padding and now that they have the world of light mode there’s plenty to do for people that don’t play multiplayer anyways.

Avatar image for mezza
#23 Edited by MezZa (3048 posts) -

@haneybd87: They did. Nearly all of the cast came unlocked in Smash 4, and a large amount of their fanbase complained that the unlocks in the game were lackluster and that the sense of playing the game to earn things was gone. Smash covers a wider audience than a traditional fighting game. A lot of people play it just for single player content or crazy multiplayer shenanigans. Theres 70ish characters in a game packed full of some of the most famous franchises. The amount of people who need one specific character unlocked because they wont enjoy playing any content other than versus and ranked battles with that one character is a minority.

It's good to get with the times, but its also important to understand your audience. The average smash audience is very different from the fighting game audience even if there is a fighting game scene for smash.

Avatar image for haneybd87
#24 Edited by haneybd87 (394 posts) -

@mezza: I just don’t see the point of unlocks in any other context than single player. Single player has a whole mode full of separate unlocks that include more than just playable characters so why does multiplayer mode need to be punished? And I’m not talking about just wanting to use 1 specific character, I want to be able to use a variety. When you’re playing 8 player smash with your friends and there’s only 8 characters to play that just sucks. It’s not fun at all. I want some variety.

Avatar image for mezza
#25 Edited by MezZa (3048 posts) -

@haneybd87: So then you play for like 20 minutes and have 5-10 more characters unlocked if you unlock them through versus modes. A little fewer if you do classic. WoL is the only slow way, and the rest are very quick. You get variety almost instantly. You're not locked into 8 characters for hours. When theres a group of people who want it one way and another that want it the opposite way they have to make a choice. It's not surprising that in a game built on nostalgia, they do adhere to their own nostalgia as well.

I'd also argue that a slow introduction to the characters is good. You get to see what everybody does and try a variety of characters. If you start with 70 theres suddenly 70 characters that you have to try to understand all at once. With Nintendo's usual design principles, again, it's not surprising they take a gradual intro over dumping everything on you right away.

On top of all this, this game was seemingly designed to pay reverence to the old games. Everybody is back and you start with the 64 cast. They obviously had an objective to invoke the history of the title which included the feeling of building out your roster through approaching challengers.

Ultimately, I understand where you're coming from. However, the number of people who play smash and dont care about single player content aren't a large enough audience for them to choose taking away a process that a lot of people enjoy engaging with in the game. The challenger approaching screen and classic siren are iconic and people do actually enjoy it. They tried to minimize it last game and got flack for it.

Avatar image for inevpatoria
#26 Edited by inevpatoria (7442 posts) -

@haneybd87 said:

@mezza: I just don’t see the point of unlocks in any other context than single player. Single player has a whole mode full of separate unlocks that include more than just playable characters so why does multiplayer mode need to be punished? It’s crazy.

You don't have a bad point, to be clear. It is a bit of a bummer for folks who want to jump into multiplayer battles right away to be limited to essentially the original cast. And I don't know how much better this makes you feel, but Polygon recently published an article about the contradictory value this system has for Smash Ultimate's diverse audience, so you aren't the only one who feels this way.

But I'd go as far as to say part of the appeal of the Smash Bros games is this exact process of unlocking. It's not just a matter of "it's the way they've always done it," it's largely--as people have already said--something most Smash players get excited about. For better or worse in your experience, it's positioned as a larger selling point for the game, since they've built out all of these unique New Challenger fights to be experiences unto themselves.

Furthermore, unlockable characters are a staple of fighting games. It's extreme with Smash, considering almost ninety percent of the cast is behind the unlock wall. But I suppose every fighting game, to some extent, alienates players who want to tool around with the entire roster out of the gate.

Avatar image for magnetphonics
#27 Posted by MagnetPhonics (78 posts) -

The "Challenger Approaching" thing is fun. But the conditions for triggering the fights in Smash are terrible, they literally punish you for playing the game.

Are people that far gone that they see, "Set the timer to 30 seconds and play; beat challenger; reboot the game; repeat," and think this is a good system?

Avatar image for rejizzle
#28 Posted by Rejizzle (1122 posts) -

I kind of like the unlock system. Sure, it sucks I can't play Ridley right away, but much like Hitman 2016, a more limited play experience encourages focus my energies and become very good at one particular thing. I can't play as Bayonetta yet, but my Pikachu is damn near unstoppable in my friends group.

Avatar image for haneybd87
#29 Edited by haneybd87 (394 posts) -

I guess I just don’t see the appeal to the whole challenger approaching thing, it’s not fun or special to me. They should add in a toggle or something in the options so that the people that enjoy all that can leave it on and the rest of us can just jump into the full roster with friends. What’s fun and special to me is just having some dumb fun with friends. That’s what Smash Bros is to me.

Avatar image for sombre
#30 Posted by Sombre (427 posts) -

I don't hate having to unlock characters, because the other option is "Sure, pay us £20 to unlock them all right away lol".

It's hard though. Something I think I'd like them to add is for every X characters you unlock, give you an unlock token to get a free, your choice unlock. I think that would be nice

Avatar image for sloppydetective
#31 Posted by SloppyDetective (1608 posts) -

@magnetphonics: I don't think the unlocks are great in this game but what you're describing is a stupid reaction to the system. Just accept that Nintendo (like always) has a harsh gating process in their game and play according. A run in classic mode has always gotten me a new Challenger and has forced me to learn all the characters, and a classic run takes about 20min max. Or shoot into the loot cave and make an already tedious system more tedious and less fun.