Thursday, March 27, 2008

Thoughts on Super Smash Brothers Brawl

3/27/08 Update - We're starting to flesh out what the new characters would look like. Specifically, we explain Dr. Vector/Hector, Lakitu, Doshin, Andross, Ganon, and Mother Brain. How could those characters be playable?

Note: In the original SSB, Fox actually had an advantage. He was faster than the other characters so you could run in and throw people faster than they could respond with a punch. Because throws were so powerful, anybody who was great at Fox was almost guaranteed to win. They changed this in Melee by making smashes easier and by making throws less powerful and not quite as instant.

Super Smash Brothers Brawl

The best Final Smash is from Solid Snake!

I don't like the Final Smashes. Some are just too powerful. I think I'd want them to be even-ed out a little where each character just becomes "super" in some capacity.

Although I love Brawl (best in the series, plus one player and multi-player goodness), I don't think it had as big of a splash as Melee. It was marketed much better (what with the Internet running rampant), but I think it's missing an ingredient from the previous two games...

They only added 16 characters to Brawl, but they took away 5 and replaced them with similar new characters (Pichu became Pokemon Trainer, Mewtwo became Lucario, Dr. Mario became Wario, Roy became Ike, and Young Link became Toon Link). So that's only 11 additional characters. Plus they added Lucas who's very similar to Ness, Diddy's like DK, Wolf is very similar to Fox, and Zero Suit is Samus. So I say they only added 7: ROB, Pit, Olimar, Snake, Sonic, Meta Knight, and Dedede.

Two of those weren't even from Nintendo.

Of these unique characters, I'd really only have asked for Pit, Olimar, and Dedede. (The others I'd ask for are below.)

If Brawl only added 7 additional/unique characters, with 16 total new characters, how many did Melee have?

Super Smash Brothers Melee

14 New Characters: Bowser, Dr. Mario, Falco, Ganondorf, Ice Climbers, Marth, Mewtwo, Mr. Game & Watch, Peach, Pichu, Roy, Sheik, Young Link, and Zelda.

Of these 14...

8 Additional/Unique Characters: Bowser, Ganondorf, Ice Climbers, Marth/Roy, Mewtwo, Mr. Game & Watch, Peach, and Zelda.

So while Brawl innovated in many areas (online, one player, assist trophies, and expanded levels and items), they didn't blow me away with the new characters. The amount and "newness" of the new characters added was a little less impressive than the amount and "newness" of the new characters added to Melee.


My recommended characters

Here's who I would have liked to see playable in Super Smash Brothers Brawl (I know some are trophies or bosses, but that isn't the same)...

Note: Characters have to be redefined as they go to make them cooler and to make them usable (Pit is a great example). These redefinitions could really increase interest in these characters.

28 Additional Unique Nintendo Characters: Captain N (cartoon), Nester (Nester's Funky Bowling, VB, and Pilotwings 64, N64), Little Mac (Punch Out, NES), the Ice Hockey Trio (Ice Hockey, NES), Mike Jones (Startropics, NES), Isaac (Golden Sun), Balloon Fighter (Balloon Fight, NES), Stanley the Bugman (Donkey Kong 3, Arcade), Dr. Vector & Dr. Hector (Gyromite & Stackup, NES), Lolo (Adv of Lolo, NES), Dr. Wright (Sim City, SNES), Midna & Wolf Link (Zelda: TP, Wii), Doshin the Giant (Doshin, 64DD), Ray (Custom Robo, 64DD), Hamtaro (GBA), (Ridley (Metroid, NES), 2 Hammer Bros. (SMB 1, NES), Lakitu (SMB 1, NES), Wart (SMB 2, NES), Zoda (Startropics 1 & 2, NES), King K. Rool (DKC, SNES), Tatanga (SML, Gameboy), Eggplant Wizard (Kid Icarus, NES), King Hippo (Punch Out!!!, NES), Andross (Star Fox, SNES), Ganon (original Zelda, NES), Mother Brain (Captain N version, Cartoon), and the Three Viruses (Dr. Mario, NES).

Notes: 14 heroes and 13 villains. Dr. Wright, Hammer Bro, Isaac, Little Mac, Lakitu, and Ray were assist trophies in Brawl. Beast Ganon was a Final Smash for Ganondorf (I'm suggesting the original Ganon design, though.) Ridley was a boss character in Brawl. King K. Rool, Wolf Link, and Midna were regular trophies in Brawl. Balloon Fighter, Stanley the Bugman, Doshin the Giant, and the Viruses were trophies in Melee.

Captain N, Nester, the Ice Hockey Trio, Mike Jones, Dr. Vector & Dr. Hector, Lolo, Wart, Zoda, Tatanga, Eggplant Wizard, King Hippo, Ganon (original design), and Mother Brain were never shown in a SSB game (12 characters, counting the Ice Hockey Trio as one and Vector/Hector as one).

26 Non-unique Nintendo Characters: Waluigi (Mario Tennis, N64), Birdo (SMB2, NES), Daisy (Super Mario Land, GB), Toad (SMB), Baby Mario (Yoshi's Island, SNES), Pauline (Donkey Kong, Arcade), Donkey Kong Jr. (DK Jr., Arcade), Funky Kong (DKC, SNES), Dixie Kong (DKC 2, SNES), Goron (Zelda: OT, N64), Tingle (Zelda: MM, N64), Lyn (Fire Emblem), Krystal with Tricky (Star Fox Adventures, GC), Slippy Toad (Star Fox, SNES), ROB 64 (Star Fox 64, N64), Kanden (Metroid Prime: Hunters, GC), 3 Koopalings: Lemmy Koopa, Wendy Koopa, & Morton Koopa (SMB3, NES), & 7 more F-Zero racers: Samurai Goroh (F-Zero, SNES), Mr. EAD (F-Zero X, N64), Pico (F-Zero, SNES), Black Shadow (F-Zero X, N64), Phoenix (F-Zero AX, Arcade), Draq (F-Zero X, N64), and The Skull (F-Zero X, N64).

Notes: Lyn, Samurai Goroh, Tingle, and Waluigi were assist trophies in Brawl. Birdo, Daisy, Toad, Baby Mario, Funky Kong, Dixie Kong, Goron, Slippy Toad, Krystal, Tricky, Kanden, Mr. EAD, Pico, Black Shadow, and The Skull were regular trophies in Brawl. Donkey Kong Jr was a trophy in Melee.

Pauline, Lemmy, Wendy, Morton, Phoenix, and Draq were never shown in a SSB game (6 characters).

34 New assist trophies: Barker Bill (Barker Bill's Trick Shooting, NES), Excitebiker in 3D (Excitebike, NES), Duck Hunt dog with ducks (Duk Hunt, NES), Mr. Stevenson (Gumshoe, NES), Wild Gunman (Wild Gunman, Arcade & NES), Bubbles (Clu Clu Land, NES), Hiro (Card Hero, GBC), Sturm (Advance Wars, GB), Lip (Panel de Pon, GB), Tamagon (Devil World, NES), Donbe & Hikari (Shin Oni Ga Shima, NES), Rosetta (Mario Galaxy, Wii), Geno (Super Mario RPG, SNES), Mallow (SMRPG, NES), Sub-Con (SMB2, NES), Pidget (SMB2, NES), Professor E Gadd (Luigi's Mansion, GC), Cranky Kong (DKC, SNES), Xananab (DK: Jungle Climber, DS), Mr. Saturn (Earthbound, NES), Poo (Earthbound, NES), Professor Oak (with Pokemon, GB), Totakeke (Animal Crossing), Peppy Hare (Star Fox, SNES), Bio Rex (F-Zero X, N64), PJ (F-Zero AX, Arcade), Octoman (F-Zero X, N64), Ballyhoo & Big Top (Mario Party 8, Wii), Lanky Kong on Squitter (DK64, N64), Kip & Kass (DK Barrel Blast, Wii), Sylux (Metroid Prime: Hunters, GC), Black Knight (Fire Emblem: PR, GC), a Centurion (Kid Icarus, NES), and the Ancient Minister (SSB Brawl, Wii).

Notes: Excitebike was an assist trophy in Brawl (it was just 2D and not cool), and there was an Advance Wars representative, Tanks & Infantry (but not as cool as a 3D character). Centurion was a Final Smash move for Pit. Ancient Minister was a boss in Brawl. Ballyhoo & Big Top, Lanky Kong, Cranky Kong, Squitter, Kass, Kip, Xananab, Mr. Saturn, Peppy Hare, Black Knight, and Sylux were regular trophies in Brawl. Duck Hunt ducks, Bubbles, Pidget, Poo, Professor Oak, Totakeke, Donbe & Hikari, and Tamagon were trophies in Melee (Tamagon was Japan only).

Barker Bill, Duck Hunt Dog, Mr. Stevenson, Wild Gunman, Hiro, Sturm, Lip, Rosetta, Geno, Mallow, Sub-Con, Professor E Gadd, Bio Rex, PJ, and Octoman were never shown in a SSB game (15 characters).

It is believed that Square/Enix owns Geno and Mallow.

As someone who's looking for the more obscure charaters, I did enjoy seeing SSB Brawl assist tropies like Barbara the Bat, Excitebike, Jill & Drill Dozer, Jeff, Kat & Ana, Knuckle Joe, Metroid, Mr. Resetti, Nintendog, Saki Amamiya, and Stafi (as well as many regular trophies). (I'd have those I just listed return as assist trophies.) However, I think Andross, Dr. Wright, Hammer Bros. (2 insted of 1), Lakitu, Little Mac, Ray MK III, Samurai Gorah, Tingle, and Waluigi should have been playable (see above lists).

22 Unique Non-Nintendo Characters: Mega Man (Capcom), Q*Bert (Gottlieb), Pac-Man (Namco/Bandai), Simon Belmont (Castlevania; Konami), Crash Bandicoot (Universal), Frogger (Konami), Spyro (Universal), Ninja Gaiden (Tecmo), Pitfall Harry (Activision), Contra dudes (Konami), Cloud on a Chocobo (Final Fantasy, Square/Enix), Mog the Moogle (Final Fantasy; Square/Enix), Blue Slime (Dragon Warrior, Square/Enix), Paperboy (Atari), Lara Croft (Eidos), Bomberman (Hudson), Master Higgins (Adventure Island, NES; Hudson), Gex (Eidos), Nights (Sega), Bonk (Hudson), Banjo-Kazooie (Rare/Microsoft), Conker (Rare/Microsoft), Rayman (Ubi-soft), and Ryu (Capcom).

DISCLAIMER: I know it's painful to make so many characters (you have to design them, all their moves, and figure out how to make them different but still valuable and balanced). And I know they wouldn't be able to add them all at once. However, they seem to have run out of innovation, vision, and marketing prowess in the area of re-introducing characters to us, and it is a shame. They just need a little imagination to make the moves different in order to make sure the game is still fun, even with 50 or so characters.

Part of the joy of playing the first two Smash Brothers was discovering the obscure Nintendo characters you haven't heard of and then playing as them. That's pretty much just Pit and ROB, this time around (and ROB's already been re-introduced in Star Fox and Mario Kart DS).

As far as other non-Nintendo characters go, I think they should go all-in, or all-out. I know the creators of Snake and Sonic asked for them to be in the game, but if the Nintendo legends asked these companies to include their characters, they'd say yes. I mean Capcom (creators of Mega Man) has already been making games for Nintendo (as has Sega). All the rest have similarly close relationships. Sega (who brought in Sonic) are also the creators of Nights. Konami (who brought in Solid Snake) also own Simon Belmont, Frogger, and Contra. Even though Microsoft owns Rare (creators of Banjo and Conker), they've kept the relationship alive by releasing Rare games on Nintendo systems (including Diddy Kong Racing DS and the coming Viva Pinata). Nintendo would just start with the strongest relationships, and then show the growing roster to all the other companies as they get to characters like Crash and Spyro (who are also on Nintendo systems now).

I'd actually divide these up into three games: Nintendo only, mascots only (cuter platformers), and action/adventure games only (usually the taller characters who carry weapons). (The mascots game and action/adventure game would include Nintendo and non-Nintendo characters.) So there'd be some overlap between the Nintendo only version and the other two.


The 27 unique Nintendo characters I'd like to see as playable characters...


Captain N (80s cartoon series)


Nester (Nester's Funky Bowling, VB, and Pilotwings 64, N64)


Little Mac (Punch Out series, 2 arcade games, NES, SNES)

I really like his new design in Smash Brothers Brawl. He's an assist trophy. I think including him as an assist trophy reminded gamers of him and made him popular enough again to release the Punch Out Wii game.


Ice Hockey Trio (Ice Hockey, NES)

The Ice Hockey trio were a large man, a skinny man, and a man of an average build...


Mike Jones (Startropics) (2 Startropics games, NES)

The first game was popular enough for a sequel, but they made the mistake of releasing the sequel on the NES after everyone had switched over to the Super Nintendo. I believe that's the only reason why this series died.


Isaac (Golden Sun series)

Isaac's assist trophy in SSB Brawl:


Balloon Fighter (Balloon Fight, NES)

How can you not include him with a name like "Fighter?" He was a trophy in Smash Brothers Melee:


Stanley the Bugman (DK3, Arcade)

I didn't really like his design in Super Smash Brothers Melee...

...Similarly to how I didn't like Pitt's design in SSBM. Thankfully they redesigned Pitt with a Zelda-style makeover. Hopefully, they'd give Stanley a Mario-style makeover.


Dr. Vector & Dr. Hector (Gyromite & Stack-Up, NES)

Dr. Vector/Dr. Hector would be another dual character (like Ice Climbers and Kat & Ana). I would actually roll ROB up back into their theme, where they would ride ROB and send him out as a weapon. Essentially, they would be replacing ROB and making him much more interesting (at least in our opinion).

Dr. Vector:

Dr. Hector:


Lolo (Adventures of Lolo and Eggerland, A long-running series on the NES and earlier platforms)

While Lolo was never published by Nintendo, Nintendo now owns the creators, HAL:

HAL is also the creator of Kirby, Earthbound/Mother, Dr. Wright (Sim City 64), and the Super Smash Brothers series.

"Lolo and Lala, the games' protagonists, have appeared in the Kirby games under the monikers Lololo and Lalala, where they play a more antagonistic role. Both game series are made by HAL Laboratory, Inc."

Kirby's Dreamland:

Kirby's Avalanche:

Kirby Superstar:

More info:


Dr. Wright (SimCity, SNES, and SimCity 64, Japan's 64DD)

As an assist trophy in Brawl (not playable):


Midna & Wolf Link (Zelda: TP, Wii)


Doshin the Giant (64DD and GC)

Doshin could be redefined a little in that he would start huge as his intro and then shrink down to a normal large size. His moves could involve growing bigger (especially his final smash) and all his moods.


Custom Robo - Ray (64DD and GC)

The assist trophy in SSB Brawl:


Ridley (Metroid series)


Hammer Bros. (SMB and Super Mario series)

This is from the Mario cartoon:

As an assist trophy in SSB Brawl:


Lakitu (SMB and Super Mario series)

Lakitu is essentially a Koopa Troopa on a cloud. You could come up with all kinds of moves and attacks for that. He doesn't have to be in the cloud the whole time. You could redefine him a little by having him ride spinies while he's on the ground. You could also use the cloud to attack with lightening or to rain on the ground and make it slippery.

He's actually an assist trophy in Brawl, but they should have made him in 3D:

As a trophy in SSB Melee:


Wart (SMB2, NES)


Zoda (Startropics 1 & 2, NES)


King K. Rool (DKC 1-3, SNES, and Donkey Kong series)


Eggplant Wizard (Kid Icarus, NES & GB)

In the original NES game:


Tatanga (SML, GB)

Tatanga was introduced in Super Mario Land, which is where Daisy came from.


King Hippo (Punch Out series, Arcade, NES, SNES)

From the Wii Punch Out game:


Ganon (Legend of Zelda, at least 3 games, NES, SNES)

This is the original pig Ganon. He's unique because he wouldn't play like Ganondorf at all. He'd rely on his magic spells and girth.


Andross (Star Fox series)

Not the SNES polygon version. I mean as the actual ape character:

Andross was essentially just a large ape before he was killed. Now he's a spirit. He could also be redefined to be a spirit character that looks like an ape and goes back and forth between being the physical ape and being the spirit of the ape. One move could be to turn into the spirit and quickly float through an area unharmed. His final smash would be the spirit controlling the larger robot (the one with the big ape head and two hands).

The SSB Melee trophy:


Mother Brain (Metroid series and Captain N cartoon)

She would attack with psyonic powers, large tentacles, and rolling attacks.

This would be of the Captain N version:


The Three Viruses (Dr. Mario)


Brawl pulled away from the older characters

So, yeah, these are mostly older characters, because that's what they haven't done as well with. They haven't dug into their past as well with this version. But there are several newer characters, and many of these characters have been used recently (and thus might not be considered old). Now, they tried to bring back less known characters with trophies and such, but they didn't do that with playable characters, which is what will really open up new interest in older characters.

Super Smash Brothers (N64)

SSB 1 had 6 new characters from the 80s: Donkey Kong, Link, Luigi, Mario, Ness (originally Ninten), and Samus.
SSB 1 had 6 new characters from the 90s: Captain Falcon, Fox McCloud, Jigglypuff, Kirby, Pikachu, and Yoshi.

SSB 1 introduced a lot of US players to Ness and Captain Falcon.

Super Smash Brothers: Melee (GC)

SSB 2 had 5 new characters from the 80s: Bowser, Ice Climbers, Mr. Game & Watch, Peach, and Zelda.
SSB 2 had 7 new characters from the 90s: Dr. Mario, Falco, Ganondorf, Marth, Mewtwo, Sheik, and Young Link.
SSB 2 had 2 new characters from the 00s: Pichu and Roy.

SSB 2 introduced a lot of US players to Ice Clmbers, Mr. Game & Watch, Dr. Mario, Marth, and Roy (5 characters).

Super Smash Brothers: Brawl (Wii)

SSB 3 had 3 new characters from the 80s: Pit, ROB, and Solid Snake (and Snake isn't even Nintendo).
SSB 3 had 7 new characters from the 90s: Diddy Kong, Dedede, Meta Knight, Pokemon Trainer, Sonic the Hedgehog, Wario, and Wolf (only Sonic is from a new series to SSB, but he's not even Nintendo).
SSB 3 had 6 new characters from the 00s: Ike, Lucario, Lucas, Olimar, Toon Link, and Zero Suit Samus (only Olimar is from a new series).

SSB 3 introduced a lot of US players only to Pit and ROB (and ROB had already been "brought back" by Star Fox games and Mario Kart DS). NOTE: ROB appeared in Star Fox as a name reference only; it was a different character.

Nintendo relied on the Assist Trophies to introduce some unknown characters: Devil, Little Mac, Excite Biker, Jill Dozer, Kat & Ana, Knuckle Joe, Saki Amamiya, and Stafi.

As you can see, they are concentrating on more recent characters. That's okay, but some of these other 80s games were amazing, and they should introduce their new gamers to these characters for an opportunity to revive some of these great series.


Now my thoughts on two of the only three characters they added that I would have wanted in Brawl...


I love Pit. I think they did a great job redesigning him. I was a little worried, because I hated the 3D design they gave him for his trophy in SSB: Melee.

But they made him very cool like adult Link. I think they should make a Zelda-like Kid Icarus game. It would rock!

I'm glad they didn't use his Captain N design:

Or his previous game designs:

From SSB Melee:

The fans are dreaming:



I worked on the first GC game of Pikmin as a tester/text editor. I was rooting for Olimar. I was glad to see they added him.

I also submitted a ton of ideas for the sequel to Pikmin, and most of them made it in there. The only ones that didn't were all my online ideas.


Check out our original Zelda and Duck Hunt animations if you get a chance...


- The Emperor


  1. It would be really cool to have midna and wolf link and other charectors you mentioned in ssbb (i hope they make a third!)

  2. dude this list is totally right, all the characters that you include must be part of this awesome game saga, specially the King K. Rool and all his powerful anger.

  3. Most of your arguments are faulty. To start, pokemon trainer was not a direct replacement for Pichu, and Wario was not a direct replacement for Dr. Mario, so you can't complain about that. Mainly you complain that ulike in Melee, Brawl didn't do a good job in bringing attention to old characters.

    You say that the original had 6, Melee had 5 but Brawl only had 3. Now, how can you count Mario, DK, Luigi, and Link?

    R.O.B was not brought back in Starfox, they are two separate robots with the same generic name.

    Now, as you noted with Little Mac,assist trophies are enough to warrant attention.

  4. Correction. You disagree with most of my arguments. That doesn't mean they're faulty. That just means your opinion is that they're faulty.

    Nothing is a direct replacement. But yes, they took out Pichu in order to try a trainer with several Pokemon in one. And yes, they removed a Mario and added in a character that is very similar to Mario (Wario).

    No, Brawl had 5. But I only would have wanted 3 of them (Dedede, Pitt, Olimar). I can count Mario, DK, Luigi, and Link because every character was new in the first game.

    This is about new characters to the game, not bringing on old characters.

    What makes a character old? His origin or how long it's been since he's been used? If it's length since use, then Andross, King Hippo, Ridley, Mida, Doshin, Custom Robo, King K Rool, Hammer Bros, Lakitu, Isaac, and Little Mac aren't old (because they're all recently used).

    Also, Mida, Doshin, Custom Robo,and Isaac are recently created as well.

    Also, what's wrong with re-introducing older characters or unknown Japanese ones? That's what got the Fire Emblem series stateside, and what got us a new Punch Out game. It's what is making people want a new Kid Icarus game. Nintendo has done that with ROB and Game & Watch, so they obviously enjoy bringing light to their original characters.

    I mean, Pitt, Dededede, Solid Snake, Sonic, and ROB are all "old" in the sense that their origins were from long ago.

    In conclusion, this has nothing to do with "old." In definition, you can't introduce characters that don't exist (and it would be lame to make up new characters). Therefore, they're all old, because they're all from the past.

    This is about bringing in new characters that are cool and different enough to give you a new experience.

    - TAE

  5. This is an awesome game that I play almost everyday to relax!


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