IHAO on ... Smash Brothers for the 3DS


I am not much of a gamer, but this has been a series that has been incredibly fun to play.  The schtick is to play as multiple characters from Nintendo games as you build up damage and knock them off the stage.  There are 51 characters, which is an impressive roster, and the gameplay is some of the best, like most Nintendo games: easy to learn and be good with, but complicated enough to truly learn how to master it.

I wasn't going to get the game, but I won a raffle that required me to do a lot of fun challenges to earn tickets, including the incredibly difficult "4-body" fight, where I am able to in 2 minutes of the demo beat a level 9 PC character with 4 kills before they get even one on me, which is one kill every 30 seconds.  That was fun, and challenging, and I was very proud to have gotten the demo and really earned the game.  As of writing this review I now have 46 hours of gameplay, which even though I am not much of a gamer, has me feeling pretty confidant in my review of the game.

Super Smash Brothers 3DS has a lot of game modes, though there are really three basic types of gameplay (beyond small mini-games): Smash, which is the standard game pitting you versus up to three other players, computer or actual players; the "Run," a gauntlet of Smash matches all building up to a culmination, either a run with just one "life" as you try to beat every character in All-Star mode, or a series of challenges leading to the ultimate bad guy, Master Core; and Smash Run, a platforming and exploration version of the game, filled with enemies and power-ups, and ends with some kind of ultimate challenge.  Even ignoring Smash-mode, this game's single player aspects has plenty of hours put into it.  Then you add the carrot-on-a-stick aspect of customization for Mii Fighters and variable movesets for the other 48 characters, and this game really is great.  And I haven't even TOUCHED on the multi-player gaming, which the 3DS makes incredibly easy to do.

One of my favorite things in the game is the Mii Fighters, really working to make characters that I feel should have been in the game, and actually adding them.  My two proudest are Cooking Mama, which I named Brawling Mama (which I'm STILL working to get the Chef Hat for to finish her character's costume):

... and Arthur from Ghouls and Ghosts, though he is helmet-less, because you know, he took some damage!

I've made a few others, like a Weedle (that has to be named Kakuna Jr. because you can't have "weed" in a name) and Luffy and Usopp from One Piece, but these two are my favorites.

Now, the game itself, while the gameplay is fantastic, has some really irritating aspects.  The biggest one is that with all the carrot-on-a-stick aspects of collecting trophies, optional movesets, and Mii Fighter costume pieces, it is the most frustrating thing in the world to keep winning the same ones over and over.  To keep getting the same pieces, essentially meaning that the carrot-on-the-stick aspect is a rotted carrot or no carrot at all, it makes me so upset at times to go throw an entire Smash Run or some other game-mode to win those things, and to just get the same stuff I already have, ARG, I just put the game down and walk away.  Also, the menu system is incredibly frustrating.  There are so many things hidden in so many menus, none of them sensibly put together.  You'd think all the game-modes would be in one place, but they are separated out between 5 different menu systems.  And learning information you need to continue to earn those harder to get carrots is incredibly difficult to get to.  Such as, for a certain challenge, you need to beat Smash Run in first place with all 51 characters.  But to find out who you haven't beaten it with yet, you have to back out of the game, back out of that game's menu, go into a miscellaneous menu, go into the vault, go to the Records, go to Fighter Records, switch the load out to Smash Run, then go down the list of achievements that they bar graph for you to "Victories."  If you look at the "Losses" section, that will be incorrect, because you can not have a victory and also not have a loss.  That is a LOT of hoops to jump through just to learn which character you need to play the game with again.

When it comes down to it, the actual playing of this game is just one of the best.  It doesn't have a story-mode or anything, but it has a bunch of ways to play the game, and all of them are basically fun!  And then playing with your friends is even better!  There are some baffling design choices, but there is rarely a game as fun to play as this one.  And since the 3DS version will be compatible with the Wii-U version, there is no reason to not get this game!

I recommend.


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