The Power and Impact of Super Smash Bros.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate wields the true power of video games, to bring us together and lead us to new friends around shared experiences. It also managed to transcend unlikely corporate boundaries, and expose us to games we've never played before.

The Power and Impact of Super Smash Bros.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate shows us the true power of video games, perhaps better than any other. However, creative games like Minecraft do it pretty well, too. They whisk us off into faraway worlds filled with grand adventures. Through storytelling, games can make us smile wide or break down in tears. They can inspire us, teach us, surprise us, and help us deal with real-life problems. However, perhaps the best thing of all is that they have the power to bring us together, something this world needs badly.

As demonstrated many times before, Sakurai’s last character presentation brought fans together. People from all walks of life, different gaming fandoms, and more. They all huddled around their screens, sitting on the edge of their seats holding their breath as the next reveal trailer started. I’ve never played a Kingdom Hearts game, but the recent announcement still made me happy. Seeing fans jump for joy, embrace each other, and even cry was amazing. It made me happy to see such powerful reactions, even though I’m not really familiar with that franchise.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – The Last Key

Bringing Unlikely Groups Together

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate did this multiple times, and I’ve been on the opposite side as well. When Minecraft Steve and Alex joined the brawl, it was amazingly unexpected. This made a large number of fans happy. Minecraft‘s massive and blocky fandom suddenly found itself connected to the strange realm of Super Smash Bros.! I am quite familiar with the game myself, having been part of it since its alpha days. Naturally, I was generally quite skeptical of Steve getting into Smash.

Prior to this, no one would’ve thought we’d see Steve in the same game as Mario, Link, or Samus! This showed Super Smash Bros. fans that anything is possible and forced them to look more broadly at what fighters might come next. Clearly, this announcement widened the field of possibilities. Prior to this, no indie game character had ever been a fighter in the series. Steve’s prominence in the indie scene and wide reach made him a natural choice. In this way, Super Smash Bros. has the impact and power to connect otherwise unlikely games, and thus their fans together.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate - A New Seed! - Nintendo Switch

Crossing Major Corporate Lines

Another impact of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has been the transcension of unlikely corporate lines. For example, Minecraft is owned by Microsoft these days. Similarly, so is Banjo-Kazooie, who also arrived in Nintendo’s great brawler. That trailer was another one that got a big response from parts of the Smash Bros. fandom. Banjo and Kazooie did well in the fighter poll for Smash 4. However, they did not make it in at the time.

I wasn’t familiar with the series beforehand, but I have since played and enjoyed the original game. In that way, another impact on players is in exposing us to other video games we may not have played before. Perhaps the biggest example of breaching unlikely corporate boundaries is of course Sora. Many fans did not think there was any chance of a Kingdom Hearts crossover. Nonetheless, Nintendo managed to make it happen. This breached what fans thought to be insurmountable legal hurdles and made it a reality. In fact, Sora also did very well in the Smash 4 fighter poll. Furthermore, this all shows that the developers have still been listening to what the players wanted all along.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate – Best Friends – Nintendo Switch

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Signs Off

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a celebration of video games that is itself a video game! Its power to bring gamers together is largely unmatched. Masahiro Sakurai and his team have created a massively ambitious ode to gaming. It includes nods to all eras and corners of gaming. The impact of Super Smash Bros. stems from wielding power that most video games could never dream of. The team behind it has been working hard since 2016, constantly expanding and improving the game with new characters, stages, and content.

According to the final “Sakurai Presents”, the game now boasts 89 fighters, 116 stages (340 if you include battlefield and omega forms), 201 items, 1,100 music tracks, 1,496 spirits, and connects to over 450 games and over 2,200 of their characters. This is no small feat by the developers! All of this adds to the impact of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate:

  • Bringing us together by linking otherwise disparate corners of gaming
  • Helping us loosen up from everyday life with some friendly competition
  • Leading us to new gaming experiences and new friends

However, the recent announcement of Kingdom Heart‘s Sora is also bittersweet, as he is the final fighter. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate may be signing off, but gamers will still be firing up the game and feeling its impact for a long time to come. To some, it may just be a silly fighting game, but to those who understand it, it is so much more. Thank you so much to Sakurai and his team for the immense amount of work that had to happen to make this game what it is!

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