I just wanted to take a moment to warn you all of the coming gaming apocalypse. On March 9th, 2008 Nintendo is prepared to release a game so completely full of mind-blowing content, it makes other developers (even Nintendo’s other first-party offerings) look like lazy button mashing tiddly-winks by comparison. That game is Super Smash Brothers: Brawl.
If you’ve been following the daily updates on The Smash Brothers Dojo (asyou should be), or have played any of the two previous Smash Brothers games, you’ll have a good idea of what to expect here. If not, go check it out, or read up on it via Wikipedia. Go. Now. No, it’s ok, I’ll wait…
For those who live in blissful ignorance of the approaching downfall of the gaming industry, Smash Brothers is a 4-player fighting game, using characters and stages from several different Nintendo franchises. In addition to the big three flagship franchises, (those Mario, Zelda, and Metroid, of course), tons of other franchises are represented. It would not be a rare occurrence to see Kid Icarus beating the crap out of (recently announced) Captain Olimar from Pikmin.
Now, I know what you’re saying right now: “That’s great Nick, but what if you don’t like Nintendo’s characters.” I’m so glad that you asked, random internet person, because the good news is that you can take out your aggression on those despised ‘Kidtendo’ mascots with characters like Sonic the Hedgehog, or Solid Snake from the Metal Gear series.
“Wow, tons of characters! This already sounds like an awesome game! Please, Nick, accept this blank check for providing me with this amazing information!” While I’m flattered, I cannot accept payment at this time, and besides… I wasn’t finished yet. Not only will we see a veritable metric awesome ton of characters, but each franchise is represented by at least one stage. There are even some stages that aren’t even tied to a (confirmed, as of yet) character, like a stage that is located in an Animal Crossing Village, complete with a live show by K.K. Slider every Saturday night, just like the Animal Crossing games. Another amazing addition is the ability to create your own stages, and trade them with your friends. I can’t wait to see how many different artistic takes we get on the male phallus being as it is the principle seed of inspiration for fan art, ya know.
Just when you think the deal couldn’t get any sweeter the game will feature tons of music tracks from, (let’s just estimate here), a bajillion composers. Basically, a composer for every represented franchise, plus a few that Nintendo just threw in there for the hell of it. In addition to the sheer amount of music available, you will be able to customize what music tracks play, in what frequency, for each stage. You want some Super Mario Brothers 3 music while you fight on the Starfox stage? Feel free.
So, we’ve covered characters, stages, and music, right? That’s enough for one game. Or it would be, if Masahiro Sakurai (the main man) wasn’t completely insane. A new addition to this year’s Smash are assist trophies, items that can be thrown and offer a variety of nostalgia inducing effects. You’ll see pixelated Excitebikes and Lakitus flying across the stage hitting your opponents, a Nintendog popping up to block the screen, or Grey Fox from Metal Gear slicing your opponents, among many, many others. Other characters are just tossed in, either as collectible (and tradeable) stickers, or as regular trophies that you’ll collect throughout every mode of the game.
Top it off with an engaging single player adventure mode (wait, did I say single player? You can play it co-op, as well), and an ambitious (by Nintendo’s standards) online strategy, and you’re left with, in the parlance of Tolkien, “One game to rule them all.”
If you think what I’ve described here sounds like the best game of all time ( and if you don’t, it’s probably because you’re not very bright), bear in mind the fact that what I’ve described here is only the tip of the tip of the iceberg. I did my best to try and summarize everything, but it’s really an impossible task. I’d really recommend spending some time over at The Smash Brothers Dojo to catch up on the (week)daily updates. The scariest part is, the site has been live for well over a year, and they’re not done revealing content yet.
For the time being, take a look at one of the promotional videos that have been released in anticipation of the upcoming Japanese release. Of course, it’s in that crazy moon language, but the language of awesome is most definitely universal. Youtube link