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Super Smash Bros. (Video Game Review)

Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS is the fifth installment for the highly popular Nintendo exclusive first launched back in 1999 on Nintendo 64 consoles. The new game is the first title in the series to release on a Nintendo handheld device, and the Nintendo 3DS release is said to be the fifth major installment for the series and a standalone title with the sixth release coming soon to Nintendo Wii U. Super Smash Bros. is a fantastic fighting game even in its first entry into the handheld world. The game isn't perfect, but some exclusive features and game modes along with bonus content for owners of both Super Smash Bros. releases will make fans want to pick up the new game on both Nintendo 3DS and Nintendo Wii U upon release.

It's easy to see right away that Super Smash Bros. is a full fledged fighting game experience on Nintendo 3DS. The game features a massive roster of 36 fighters out of the box with plenty of unlockable characters, trophies and other items awaiting players that spend a lot of time with the game. Players can also create custom Mii fighters or edit existing characters to suit their preferred fighting style and use in different game modes. The game's levels are more creative than ever before; some of our favorites included a Nintendogs level with cute puppies playing in the background while epic fights took place in the foreground, and fighters are forced to constantly be on the lookout for falling toys in the living room.

Super Smash Bros. doesn't feature a traditional story mode on Nintendo 3DS. Instead, players can choose from a variety of single player game modes that includes Classic, All-Star, Stadium and Training. Classic mode allows players to earn coins trophies and more while facing off with randomized characters on a board with branching paths. The mode is most similar to the original story modes seen in the franchise with randomized battles such as team battles and fights against giant opponents thrown in for good measure. Classic mode is still addictive even if it isn't quite as fun as other variants from the series' past.

All-Star mode lets players choose a fighter and attempt to clear waves of enemies from different decades of the history of video games. Players can earn powerups, coins and other items through battles, but there is only one life and damage carries over from one round to the next to make the mode plenty challenging even for skilled Smash players. Stadium includes a similar mode where a player faces off with hordes of enemies, and the classic Target Blast and Home-Run Contest modes are included here as well.

Smash Run is the exclusive game mode for the Nintendo 3DS release of Super Smash Bros.. The game mode has players running through levels battling AI controlled baddies from different games from the Nintendo library. When players defeat these enemies, statistic boosts will be dropped based on what moves the players used to defeat that particular enemy. The stat boosts carry over the game mode's final challenge that may include another battle, a race or some other challenge, though the player's current statistical ratings may not be suited for the event type. It's definitely easy to spend several hours playing the new mode, even if the randomized nature of the event can seem unfair at times.

Super Smash Bros.'s Training mode really lacks any good ways to teach newcomers how to play the game. Training includes plenty of options to customize the experience from AI opponents who don't fight back to difficult opponents that act just as they would in a real fight. Items can be spawned at any point during a match, and a few other options include changing camera views of the action. Despite having all of these options available in Training, it's only when players sit idle at the game's title screen that the game decides to teach players the basic rules of the game such as smash attacks and how to safely land back inside of the arena after being launched.

Super Smash Bros. looks fantastic on Nintendo 3DS and runs at a smooth 60 frames per second even when fights get hectic. Unfortunately, it can be difficult for players to keep up with the action, or even their own fighter, when the camera zooms out for 4-player battles. The small screen doesn't work well for larger scaled battles. The game does its best to help prevent some of these problems by offering different camera options and limiting the levels to smaller sized arenas, but it is still far too easy to lose track of your character after being launched, and the game is nearly impossible to play without proper lighting. Considering how many players will be heavily invested in the game's multiplayer and online modes, it's hard to look over Super Smash Bros. camera issues.

Despite any flaws the game has, Super Smash Bros. is a game we couldn't put down for days after picking up the new release. The game features the most impressive roster of characters ever assembled for a Super Smash Bros. game, and plenty of game modes offer players a good variety of ways to enjoy the game in single player and multiplayer sessions. The first handheld release for the series is an excellent game that is up to the same high standards of most other Nintendo exclusives, and the game's camera problems and other minor flaws won't keep fans from enjoying the new release. Super Smash Bros. is out now exclusively for Nintendo 3DS.

Super Smash Bros. is now available for Nintendo 3DS and can be purchased for $39.99. Super Smash Bros. is rated E by the ESRB for Comic Mischief, Cartoon Violence & Mild Suggestive Themes. For more information on the game, check out the official Super Smash Bros. website.

Game Features:
  • Online Multiplayer 1-4
  • Includes Exclusive Smash Run Mode for Nintendo 3DS
  • Over 40 Fighters Including Non-Nintendo Characters
  • Create Custom Fighters With Customized Stats
  • Earn Trophies and Unlock Hidden Fighters

Game Information:
Developer: Project Sora
Publisher: Nintendo
Platforms: Nintendo Wii U & Nintendo 3DS (reviewed)
Release Date: October 3, 2014

Score: 9 out of 10
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