The moment Super Smash Bros fans have been waiting for since the release of Brawl for the Nintendo Wii back in 2008. Super Smash Bros for 3DS adds new characters, new stages, complete new aspects of the game and even some new surprises. Super Smash Bros for 3DS is the first time that the famous Super Smash Bros franchise has come to a handheld console and because of that Nintendo has taken full advantage of all the 3DS has to offer.
Super Smash Bros for 3DS has so many old returning features as well as some brand new ones so talking through the Menu will be the easiest way to cover all of the new and old gameplay elements. Starting with Smash and then moving around clockwise we have:
In Smash you will find your standard game modes, here is where you find your normal solo and group matches. In solo you are able to pick a character and set up match with you and up to 3 different CPU players. In group you can either create a lobby or connect to another friends lobby to allow you and 3 other friends who also have a 3DS with Super Smash Bros for 3DS. When you first load up Super Smash Bros for 3DS you will be able to have near 40 different characters to play, as you progress through fulfilling conditions or just from playing matches you can unlock 12 more characters. The rules you are able to change are standard ones that Super Smash Bros fans will be used to; Stock and Smash. Features like item switch will be unlocked from the start but the ability to add more rules such as the Random Stage Switch will get unlocked later as you complete challenges.
Next is the Online play, this is the online multiplayer where as long as your 3DS is connected to a wireless network you are able to play online “with friends” or “with anyone”. If you aren’t in the mood to be playing but instead want to just sit back and watch there is an in built spectator mode which allows you to watch live matches, watch saved replays or just see who is playing where around the world. While spectating watches you are able to bet gold that you earn from playing the game on who you believe will win. Each player will have odds displayed over their character portraits based on the last 10 games that they have played which will affect how much money you win if the player you bet on wins the match. There is also a conquest feature that pits two characters against one another and over the course of the week the people who play as those characters will add to the side, there seems to be no reward but it’s a way of showing support for the characters you like.
Challenges have returned from Super Smash Bros Brawl and have a similar format, you complete special objectives and are able to unlock special trophies, features, stages or character customization items as a reward. There is initially one panel of 35 challenges for you to pick from but once that in completed a second panel will appear and then a third one after that. Sometimes as you complete a challenge you will be also rewarded with a special hammer that will allow you to shatter and unlock a challenge tile without having to fulfill the criteria allowing you to skip some of the harder challenges. Keep in mind some of the more difficult ones like “Defeat ???” are unbreakable meaning you have to complete the objective.
Super Smash Bros for 3DS has a new game mode called Smash Run, this is meant to be a nod to the city trials mode of Kirby Air Ride for the Gamecube. In Smash Run you and 3 other characters, being controlled by other players or CPU’s, will be given 5 minutes to explore a large area and defeat as many foes from past Nintendo franchises who will drop stickers that you pick up to enhance your stats, these include your special attacks, speed and jump ability. Random events will happen throughout the 5 minutes as well including powerful foes appearing and special warp doors that lead you to rooms that if you complete their challenge you will be rewarded extremely well. After the time limit is complete then you will be pitted against one another using your new stat boosts to improve your character in a special round. You may end up fighting in a normal round of smash or one with special rules like super jump, sometimes you will be competing in a more skill based activity such as trying to climb as high as possible or running as far to the right which will depend on the stickers that you have picked up during the first round. This game mode boasts the most replay value as each time you play smash run it will be different from the last time. Smash run ran perfectly when playing alone but trying with three 3DS’s connected at once there were times in the final round that the frame rate dropped quite significantly.
Games and more includes a wide variety of different features so again clockwise from the right it contains solo, group, options, vault and custom:
In Solo you are able to play through the classic mode of the game, this allows you to play consecutive rounds of smash in different conditions before facing off against Master Hand, Crazy Hand or even a more deadly boss. There is an added change to the feature by making you wager money on what level of difficult you will be playing at. This means you should only try for level 9 if you feel up to it as you can lose a lot of money in the process. Classic mode has also got a new split roads system which means that you can select for your next challenge to be the same level of difficulty, harder or even easier, just keep in mind that you wont get nearly as much gold for the easy fights as you would for doing one of the harder ones. Also available in solo is all-star mode where you fight against all of the characters in batches of 5-8 at a time chronologically as they appeared in games, so expect Mario and Pac-Man to show up first to the fight. Stadium mode hasn’t been forgotten with the usual game modes of multi-man melee and home-run contest but the old target mode has been swapped out with target blast. In target blast mode you use your character to smack a bomb into a structure in a very Angry Birds style mini game. The training mode from the prior game has returned so that players can practice their combo execution or just test out characters to see which one they like the most. If you want to play some of these Games with a friend the option to participate in All-Star Mode and Multi-Man Melee with up to three of your friends.
The vault in Super Smash Bros for 3DS is filled with goodies for fans of Nintendo franchises as well as smash to go an enjoy. Here you can view your trophies that have been collected throughout the game, view screenshots and replays, enjoy the sound test which contains all of the music from the game (including the ability to create a playlist and listen while the 3DS is in sleep mode), a list of your in game records and all of the tutorial messages in case you’ve forgotten how to do something.
Smash Bros for 3DS is a must have for Smash fans, for casual players it's best to make sure you have friends who are also planning on getting the game or the ability to play multiplayer or it may get stale. If none of that turns you away then you'll get countless hours of gameplay out of Super Smash Bros for 3DS!