E3 2018: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate continues to deliver a solid experience

Even though many seem to be angry or at least disappointed Nintendo devoted so much time to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, that doesn’t stop it from being one of the most exciting new titles. Earlier today I was fortunate enough to check it out and here is a small idea of what to expect.

Editor’s Note:My experience comes from four competitive matches, so I didn’t get a lot of time to toy around or figure out their optimal play style.

First and foremost, the show demo had an impressive 30-character roster, with both Inklings and Ridley, with a couple fascinating deductions (Yoshi, Peach, Meta knight and Luigi stand out the most), both of which had multiple costumes. So, let me start by saying, Inkling comes in both genders and includes a variety of different costumes, where as Ridley is just colored differently.

From what I saw, legacy characters seem to work relatively the same way, meaning you shouldn’t expect any nasty surprises or massive play style changes. That being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if the aforementioned missing characters were due to rebalancing.

If you haven’t seen streams or read about it already, Ridley starts by being significantly smaller in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. He retains a couple of his notable moves, such as fire breath, along with some really powerful tail attacks. Since he can fly, Ridley can be difficult to push over the edge, at the cost of being fairly predictable.

The Inklings seem to be designed around using ink to your advantage and crowd control. They didn’t seem to be the best one on one fighter, though I had no issue setting traps or getting multiple people with the right blast or ink explosion. It will be interesting to see if their toolkit will be considered overpowered in the right hands or something that is good at catching less skilled players off guard.

Combat itself seemed to be faster than Super Smash Bros. for Wii Uand 3DS, a fact that should make many happy. This does make it a little less accessible, though it certainly felt harder to defeat opponents. In addition to levels being potentially larger, often times it took a fair amount of damage and a good charged attack to actually defeat someone. This isn’t a huge probably, as this was always the best way to do it, it’s just worth considering a change in tactics, assuming you don’t use those at the moment.

Outside of this, it ran smooth on the Switch and looks to be quite the impressive title. It will be exciting to see how it shapes up and more importantly, how Joy-Cons feel (only GameCube and Pro controllers were usable), but for now it looks like Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be a heavy hitter for the Switch.