10:29 am EDT, August 8, 2018

‘Smash Bros’ Nintendo Direct: New characters announced, modes returning

The Smash Bros Nintendo Direct has the world pumped for the new characters, stages, and modes in the latest title for the Nintendo Switch.

The Smash Bros Nintendo direct opened up with a Simon from Castlevania announcement (and yeah, Luigi died, so there’s that). His long-distance chain attacks seem like they’ll make for a challenging foe. Richter from Castlevania was also announced as an echo fighter. Lucard will be an assist trophy, and Dracula is a stage boss for the Dracula’s Castle stage.

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Two more echo fighters were announced, the first being fan-favorite Chrom, who will echo Roy from the Fire Emblem series (with some of Ike’s moves?). Another new echo fighter announced is Dark Samus from the Metroid series. She floats a little, and has an amazingly detailed skin. You can choose to stack all of the echo fighters or have them display separately on the character select screen.

A fan-favorite character finally announced is Donkey Kong baddie King K. Rool. His announcement marks the addition of another heavy character, joining the likes of Bowser and King DDD.

Related: ‘Smash Bros’ series director the influence of ‘Smash Meelee’

An excellent new stage showcased is New Donk City Hall. It’ll be a lot of fun to listen to Mario Odyssey‘s theme song while brawling. Smash Bros. Ultimate will feature 103 stages from the beginning, and will also allow for you to turn off stage hazards. N64 stages will look true to their original form. A surprise announced made was the new feature to have stages morph into one another during battle.

Around 900 songs, or 28 hours of music, are a part of this game’s massive library. Songs are ordered by release when selecting them for stages, and they can also be listened to in the “sounds” menu option by series. You can play music while the Switch is in sleep mode, and for the first time in the Smash Bros. series, you can create your own song playlists.

smash bros nintendo direct character announcements

You can choose to turn on a chargeable Smash Ball meter that will unleash weaker final smashes upon filling. No two final smashes will be able to be unleashed at the same time.

Squad strike is 5 v 5 or 3 v 3 battle mode that is newly added. A 32 player tournament mode is also included. Smashdown allows you to only select the same fighter once as the battles progress. The training mode now has a grid and displays extensive launch distances. Classic mode makes a return, rounding out the modes included in Smash Ultimate.

The main menu has a mysterious mode yet to be revealed, and a righthand notification bar.

A new item is the banana gun, which looks like a normal banana, except that it can shoot one powerful bullet. Death’s Scythe is a one-hit KO item for highly damaged opponents, and Ramblin’ Evil Mushroom reverses an opponent’s controls. Rage Blaster gets stronger the more rage, or damage, that you have. Alolan Exeggutor is absolutely ridiculously tall, separating the stage with its body. Mimikyu is adorably evil and seems to KO players with its Let’s Snuggle Forever move. Ditto turns into fighters on the battlefield in a purple form.

Zero from Mega Man will be a heavy hitting assist trophy, as will Knuckles from the Sonic series. Kappin from the Animal Crossing series takes players on a ride on his bus off-stage. Shovel Knight is only going to be an assist trophy. The Moon from Majora’s Mask looks epic as it crashes down onto the stage. The surprise assist trophy announced was Rathalos from the Monster Hunter series; he has the unique dual presence as a boss as well.

Related: Why adding Waluigi in ‘Smash Ultimate’ would have been a bad idea

smash bros nintendo direct new modes

The launch rate of characters when they’re hit by most moves has been greatly increased. Those lucky enough to play the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate demo claim that a big hit feels like releasing a balloon across the room.

Super Smash Bros. Ultimate releases for the Nintendo Switch this December 7. It will feature the return of every fighter ever in the Smash series, included fan-favorites Snake and Pichu. Ultimate will launch with GameCube controller compatibility from the get-go.

Nintendo of Europe tweeted out an announcement of the Smash Bros. Ultimate limited edition right after the Smash Bros Nintendo Direct.

Watch the entire Smash Bros Nintendo Direct from August 8, 2018 below.

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