Thursday, October 16, 2014

Super Smash Bros 3DS - First Impressions, Part 2

I stopped talking about the new characters last time because I covered five of them and there's still 10+ to go. So, let's jump right into it.

Rosalina is an incredibly popular Mario character that I'm just not that familiar with. I only the first Mario Galaxy, and I didn't even finish it. I have basically no frame of reference for her personality except that she seemed kind of motherly to me. However, much like Peach, she doesn't seem designed to have much depth beyond what we project into her. In the end, I guess she's just a convenient character that can serve as a "heavy" female in games like Mario Kart.

She serves the same purpose in Smash Bros, though at least she's not just a "heavy" version of Peach. In addition to various Fairy Godmother moves with her wand, she also launches her little Luma, which seems like an interesting yet complex ability. However, much like the Ice Climbers in the past and, to a lesser degree, Olimar, I think Rosalina can actually lose Luma, causing him to go away until Rosalina respawns, crippling her offensively in the meantime. She seems like an all-around interesting yet risky character.

Bowser Jr. is mostly cool just because he's actually all of the other Koopa Kids as well. That is by far the coolest use of the color swap yet. Between this, Olimar's alternate Alph, and several other characters' dramatic costume changes, it makes me wonder why they can't just make Daisy a "color swap" of Peach, rather than just having a Peach with Daisy's coloring.

Anyway, the fact that Bowser Jr. is also the Koopa Kids is the best thing about him, as far as I've seen. I'm not that fond of the clown car, and I don't see myself using the character very much.

I'm also going to briefly mention that I think it's cool that Zero Suit Samus, Sheik, and Charizard are no longer just forms of a different character. The Pokemon Trainer concept in which the pokemon got tired and needed to get switched out was an interesting one, but not that fun in practice. Likewise, it was cool to have the ability back and forth between Zelda and Sheik, but most people just chose the one they liked and stuck with it. Zero Suit Samus in particular, though, was a character I liked to use, while I'm not too fond of regular Samus. So, I would specifically avoid Smash Balls in Brawl so that I didn't have to transform, which is kind of ridiculous.

I have no thoughts on Palutena yet. I've never played a Kid Icarus game, so I'm not terribly familiar with her as a character. In Smash, I haven't gotten the hang of her fighting style, and I'm not that interested in doing so.

I'd say the same thing about Shulk: I never played Xenoblade, and his fighting style doesn't interest me. My interest in a character doesn't always have much to do with my familiarity with them as characters (Marth, for instance, was pretty cool to me even before I ever played a Fire Emblem game), but in this case it may have made a difference? I'm not sure.

I actually raised my own Greninja in Pokemon, so it's interesting that I haven't spent much time with it in Smash yet. I really want to, but that will have to come later.

There are some strange characters in this game, but Duck Hunt takes the crown in that sense. It faced some stiff competition from the Wii Fit Trainer and the Villager, but this duck/dog tag team is just the right combination of fascinating, strange, and completely unconventional to be officially the weirdest fighter in the game. His moves, which all seem to call back to various Zapper-focused games, are interesting to use and watch. Duck Hunt also took me a few tried to beat when it started challenging me, so I respect its effectiveness. I don't know if I'm the right person to focus on it, though.

As I said, though, Wii Fit Trainer is also an interesting addition. This is another character with gender options, so since I referred to Robin as "she" I'll refer to the Wii Fit Trainer as "he." His move set is one of the least violent-looking sets in the game, and like the famous Drunker Master, it almost looks like the "fighting" is an accidental byproduct of the character's normal exercise regimen. I haven't gotten the hang of the character's strange timing yet, though, so this is yet another character I have little affinity with.

I've never played an Animal Crossing game, but much like Wii Fit it doesn't really seem like a violent game at all. So, again like the Wii Fit Trainer, the Villager's "attacks" seem almost accidental. And, as a final resemblance to the Wii Fit Trainer, I don't feel much affinity with the character's style.

Pac-Man is a far more traditional-feeling fighter with lots of fun-to-watch moves. He lacks any moves that call back to Pac-Man 2: The New Adventures, but I can forgive him for that. Still, nothing about him really stands out to me, so I'm not likely to spend a lot of time getting good with him.

Finally, we have the Miis: customizable fighters with several different fighting styles and move sets. They all feel pretty fun to use, but I'm going to need more time experimenting with different Special Move combinations. So far everything I've made feels a bit underpowered, though that might also have something to do with the equipment I've given them. Hm...

Anyway, there you go: my initial thoughts on the new Smash Bros characters. I expect by the end I'll have chosen just a handful of favorites I'll try to get half-decent with, then I'll start playing with random characters just for fun. I still haven't fought any actual people yet, though.

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