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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is a game for Memes



The series is bigger and more beautiful than ever. Let's hope it never stops.

The 1999 TV Ad for the very first Super Smash Bros. video games are an easy job with slapstick absurdity: People in full-body Mario, Yoshi, Donkey Kong and Pikachu costumes frolic in a sunflower field while The Turtles 'Happy Together' player. And then Mario takes out Yoshi's ankle. And Donkey Kong begins to pummel everyone.

"Something went wrong in Nintendo's happy trip," says voiceover, as these fresh representations of characters for children begin their strange bout of backyard break. It's a weird statement, one that sells Super Smash Bros. by highlighting things that are so strange about it: exactly what did Nintendo really have to make a game where its icons most loved by children beat the snow out of each other?

The answer is in the premise of the game-in fiction of the very first Super Smash Bros. it is sensibly suggested that the struggles in Smash are just children playing with toys. It's an extremely Nintendo view, this very simple reason for a game that's narrow enough to be taken by anyone who picks it up, but deep enough to support infinite play. It's a completely unnecessary explanation, but it's also perfect: this is what the kids do. They do not care about the context, or the boundaries of fictional universes.

Released this month, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is the fifth game in what has become one of Nintendo's most popular series. It is also a game that aims to be the most comprehensive version of Smash in existence. It includes all the characters and scenes included in the Smash list, and adds more than a few of their own. There is a dizzying amount of choice: up to eight players can choose from 70 plus playable characters and 103 stages that will play one of some 800 tracks of music. Each rule and setting can tweaked to your liking, and Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is also happy to remix its game in countless ways, offering an outrageous variation in cartoon beatdowns. The number of toys in this box is staggering and you can play with them, but you will.

But playing Smash is different in 2018 than it was in 1999, for a very obvious reason: the Internet, same The Internet is far better to remove the context and flattering shade than child ever was to more disastrous ends. But this is not meant to be an argument about how Super Smash Bros. Just like the Internet and it's bad, on the contrary. Smash is just like the Internet, and it's good, because it's like the Internet, the way you found it before you realized all the bad things, full of opportunity for the most weary of shit posting.

Smash Bros takes the new one where nothing really matters, and you can not really tell what is drawn from an actual game that exists (all of it) and imposes some sort of order for the chaos. In a game where everything is formable and there is no real normal, the overall principle of is Smash Bros. is simply "what makes everyone happy." Because when you remove company people designed to sell a product of all contexts, it only encourages you to invent your own, look at them side by side, call Kirby basic or Connect a test hard or the Villager child is a soulless bug. Smash Bros. is a meme factory that encourages you to create your own canon when you go. It has always been from the beginning when it told us that it was about some children playing toys. Playing Super Smash Bros lets us, for a few minutes at a time, work back to it as an adult, our sense of irony intact – because if you make Super Smash Bros. weirder, it just gets better.


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