Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is an entry in the Super Smash Bros. series for the Nintendo Switch. One of this title's main selling points is that it includes every single playable character from past Super Smash Bros. games, a feat series director Masahiro Sakurai doubts would be feasible in the future. In addition to these returning characters and the handful of new ones, the game boasts 103 stages and over 800 songs on its soundtrack.
During Ultimate's showcase at E3 2018, Nintendo used the tagline, "Everyone is here!" Indeed, every fighter from the series returns, including those previously cut from the roster and third-party characters like Solid Snake and Cloud Strife. Ultimate is the first game in the series since Super Smash Bros. Melee not to cut any characters from the previous entry.
New to this entry of the series are "Echo Fighters." Previously referred to informally as "clones," Echo Fighters are characters who share the same moves and properties as another character, with some adjustments. Lucina and Dark Pit from Super Smash Bros. for Wii U/Nintendo 3DS have been reclassified as Echo Fighters, along with new additions like Princess Daisy and Dark Samus.
Including Echo Fighters, the total number of playable characters in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is over 70, dwarfing the rosters of previous entries.
Ultimate's playable characters are listed in the order in which they were first introduced in the series. However, Echo Fighters are listed immediately after the character on which they are based.
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.
Ultimate also sees the return of Assist Trophies and Pokéballs, items that summon another character to aid the player who used it. The roster of possible characters has also grown from past games. 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.
The standard, traditional game mode. Up to eight players can fight together 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 sequence of fights leading to the boss, unlike previous entries where Classic Mode was randomized.
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.
Super Smash Bros. (N64)
Super Smash Bros. Melee
Super Smash Bros. Brawl
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U/Nintendo 3DS
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, which will surely come in handy at rooftop parties.
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.