Super Smash Bros. for Wii U has been out for a few weeks now and the idea of concentrating on the things it is missing seems ludicrous; the game is absolutely crammed to the brink with content. It’s dazzling to behold and to catalogue all the Nintendo memorabilia tucked away in the package would be a task that would dry up many days in the process. However now that we’ve really had the time to sink our teeth into the game, are there not some features, characters or otherwise, that we would have liked to have seen. Here are a few things I feel the game is missing.
#1 Assist Trophy/Poké Ball Capacity Option
Once upon a time in Super Smash Bros. Melee if we turned off all items except for Poké Balls and put the item frequency up to the highest you could have matches that would rain Pokémon. There was seemingly no limit to how many Pokémon could appear on the stage at one time. Now while Poké Ball matches occasionally appear in Smash Tour, the amount of Poké Balls that appear at once has been drastically reduced. Now we’re lucky to even see three Pokémon on the screen at once. The ability to change how many of these extra characters can appear on screen at once would add yet another customisable dimension to an already very customisable game. Of course now we have Assist Trophies in the mix there’s even more chaotic fun to be had here. Ultimately however this wouldn’t change the game dramatically, it’d simply be another distraction from the norm but this is one distraction that I would welcome with open arms.
Third party inclusion has always been a part of Super Smash Bros, even in Melee when Mega Man was a consideration and everyone was fooled into believing Sonic and Tails were super-secret unlockable gems. However Square-Enix, the developers behind Final Fantasy, Dragon Quest, and Kingdom Hearts haven’t been seen at all in the series. Thus far we’ve had Sega, Konami, Capcom and Bandai Namco but nothing from the RPG masters. The thing is Square-Enix has always had a relationship with Nintendo, despite boycotting them for several years in favour of the CD-Rom based PlayStation. A lot of the most cherished titles on the SNES where made by Squaresoft and Enix and the likes of Chrono Trigger and Final
Fantasy VI would be very welcome additions to the Smash Bros. universe. Even today the combined Square-Enix continue their support for the company releasing several exclusive titles such as Bravely Default and Kingdom Hearts 3D. Whenever Square-Enix releases a game for Nintendo you can be sure it won’t be appearing on anyone else’s consoles. However exactly what Square-Enix property should be included is hard to say, most of Final Fantasy’s more popular characters have never really appeared on Nintendo platforms and Chrono Trigger doesn’t have much claim in the present day gaming industry. Perhaps Bravely Default has proven popular enough to appear or perhaps Dragon Quest. Ultimately it is a shame that a company that has a lot of history with Nintendo hasn’t joined the brawl so here’s hoping one day at the very least we’ll see a Moogle on the trophy shelf.
#3 Professor Layton as a Playable Fighter
I understand that Nintendo and Sakurai really wanted that gaming legacy feel when they finally announced the last of the three third party characters. However Level-5 and more specifically the Professor Layton series have been huge contenders in Nintendo’s more recent successes. If we were to look at the DS or 3DS games on sale today, sitting proudly beside the likes of Mario, Link and Pikachu is Professor Layton. The series managed to pick up right where Dr. Kawashima had left off and helped Nintendo maintain that older casual audience they gained early in the system’s life. Not only that, the charm of the Professor and his apprentice Luke have managed to keep the series alive even after seven releases of more or less the same puzzle collecting gameplay. Like Final Fantasy back on the SNES, Professor Layton is synonymous with the DS proving the series deserves to appear in Super Smash Bros and that we should be sitting in front of our TVs right now using Layton’s amazing sword fighting skills to whip Mario into shape. From what I can tell, Professor Layton was one of the biggest hopefuls to appear in the latest 3DS and Wii U titles; maybe DLC will rectify this slight… although it seems very unlikely anything will come of it until Super Smash Bros. 5.
#4 An Adventure Mode through each Universe
Here we are again, reminiscing the glorious days of Super Smash Bros. Melee. Adventure Mode in Melee was an entirely new mode in which we could travel through levels based around the different universes found within Super Smash Bros. We would traipse through the Mushroom Kingdom, followed by a dash through a maze like temple straight out of The Legend of Zelda and at one point attempt to traverse a racetrack right in the middle of an F-Zero grand prix. The mode essentially placed us briefly in the middle of our favourite Nintendo games. However this mode has not be replicated since, at least not in the way we would have liked. Super Smash Bros. Brawl introduced the Subspace Emissary, a huge story mode that placed all the characters together in an effort to prevent the evil Tabu from turning everybody into trophies permanently. The adventure was an ambitious project but because the mode was independent of the universes these characters originated from it didn’t have the same effect on our ability to care. Instead wave after wave of enemies had to be fended off, none of which had anything to do with anything we’d played before (except the handful of Mario enemies that appeared). In the most recent two titles we’ve been given Smash Run and Smash Tour which, while attempting to shake up the Smash Bros. formula, ultimately fall flat because we’re not being invited into the Nintendo universes the same way Melee’s adventure mode did. An adventure through every Nintendo universe would perhaps not be over-looked as Smash Run and Tour have ultimately become
#5 Mode/Event Creator
This would effectively work in a similar fashion to LittleBigPlanet level creator, in which we could create our own Events or even Modes such as Classic and All-Star and share them with our friends over Miiverse. The idea came to me while playing through All-Star mode on the Wii U. I found myself missing the Brawl setup where we fight through every series in chronological order and facing series like Ice Climber and Pikmin would be easy because they only have one fighter representing them, while facing Mario or Pokémon would be much tougher because we’d have to fight 4 or 5 characters at once. I thought therefore to make my own all-star mode based around the Brawl setup, which I’ve enjoyed experimented with within the normal smash mode. These two titles which have so much depth and customisation already would grow to even greater heights if the player could create their own battle modes. Simply seeing the amount of creativity within the in-game photos posted online shows that there are tons of gameplay quirks and specific actions that we can experiment with. However the ability to create our own modes and share them to the world could potentially double, treble, quadruple the longevity of the game because there would be a community zone to share these challenges within. Perhaps you have a different All-Star Mode in mind, or maybe you want to see if anyone else can win with Sonic without spin dashing at all. Whatever the challenge, sharing them with friends over an official network could really add something even more exciting to the already fantastic game.
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U is once again an excellent entry in the series which will continue to bring me back for more for many months to come. Sakurai has really outdone himself again and trying to get our heads around the content in the game is enough for us to appreciate how much work he has put into this new entry. Ultimately these missing aspects aren’t going to change the game by any substantial degree but it’s still interesting to think about what could have been alongside what we now have. Who knows perhaps some of the things I’ve mentioned here will appear in a future release, only time can truly tell. Thanks for reading, if you have any ideas of your own or have something to say about mine please leave a comment.