Smashing Saturdays! Week 12: January 20–24, 2014

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I won’t lie to you. This week wasn’t the most invigorating dose of Smash Bros. goodness. Sakurai seems to be in slow burn mode, letting us stew in our collective juices until the next big reveal. But that’s okay. Know why? ‘Cause I’m here to help you get through the week with a lot of crazy analyses and a couple of goodies, including a very fun Most Wanted Brawler written by yours truly! It’s also okay since there are a couple of highly curious (maybe even suspicious) things about a couple of screenshots for this week that I’ll spend some time discussing. So, let’s get Smashing!

Smashing Saturdays

Let’s start things off right with Monday’s highly curious screenshot. Sakurai’s post made a note of the fact that the new Smash Bros. game will not involve a story mode akin to Subspace Emissary. That in itself was interesting. Know what else is? I have absolutely no idea what game this level is from. Of course it could be a generic level, but I tend to think Sakurai is showing this to us in conjunction with his post for a reason. Maybe this is a hint of a new character to be revealed? The closest I can get to identifying this stage is Lost Winds for the Wii. Granted, I find it highly unlikely, but there you have it. Has anyone else had better luck figuring out what this is from? If so, please chime in below in the comments section.

Smashing Saturdays

Tuesday’s shot was a sweet pic of Rosalina and Luma. Apparently it is supposed to highlight the different ways to play the duo, which is nothing new. But I do love the determined look on little Luma’s “face.” Like a shooting star with attitude. So excited to play as this new pair!

Smashing Saturdays

At first glance, Wednesday is nothing special. Just Link trolling the portly plumber. What was interesting was Sakurai’s post – “There are many changes being made to attack and defense options for grabbing edges. In this picture, Link is actually trumping Mario’s grab.” This is great news, as one of my worries was that Sakurai wasn’t innovating enough in the new games mechanics-wise. It also makes me wonder how much this will affect the meta game, if there are lots of new ways to edge guard. Way to make the wait even harder, Sakurai…

Smashing Saturdays

Thursday was interesting for a couple reasons. For one, it has Viridi from Kid Icarus: Uprising in the background. This could hint at her as a playable character, or it could indicate a new Uprising based stage. I tend to think the latter more accurate, given that she looks gigantic and menacing. What else was interesting was the grayish thing to the left of her. I can’t quite pin down what (or whom) that is. Anybody got a guess? If my stage idea is correct, it’s likely another character from Uprising, but it’s been a while since I’ve played it.

Smashing Saturdays

Then there is this for Friday. We’ve seen this Spirit Tracks stage multiple times, but according to Sakurai, it changes if Toon Link plays on it. Not sure what to make of that, to be honest. But the attention to detail is promising. Next, we have a Most Wanted Brawler about a fantastic N64 character written by myself. Keep on reading to find out who!


Most Wanted Brawler

Just like last time with Ridley, I spent this week tweeting clues about this Most Wanted Brawler. Here’s a quick recap:

Did you guess yet? If not, maybe this will “shake” you out of your stupor!

Most Wanted Brawler | Marina Liteyears

JOSH: I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again – the characters featured in this segment are those we most want to show up in the next Smash Bros. game, not the most likely. Which is why I’ve chosen Marina Liteyears from the criminally underrated Mischief Makers. Quite simply, Mischief Makers is one of my all-time favorite N64 games. It was original, colorful, had complex yet fun controls and an insane, over-the-top cast of characters. Marina is the robotic assistant to Professor Theo, a self-proclaimed robotics genius with no respect for Marina’s personal space. But this doesn’t stop her from going to his rescue repeatedly, as he is constantly the damsel in distress to one villain or another on the Planet Clancer. The whole game is like some insane anime, but the thing that drew me in was how quirky it was. Not only was it crazily inventive, it introduced a highly unorthodox method of battle. To quote Marina herself “Shake! Shake!”

Most Wanted Brawler | Marina Liteyears

See, Marina doesn’t just go around jumping on heads or blasting enemies with energy. Her primary method of attack is to grab hold of something and shake the crap out of it. It’s more complicated than that, however, because pretty much everything in the game can be grabbed, including bullets and enemies. Hell, a primary method of Marina getting around is by grabbing a Clancer ball and hurling herself away from it. Shaking is everywhere. So, as you might expect, timing is everything. Especially when trying to catch bullets or other dangerous items and hurling them violently back at your foes.

Most Wanted Brawler | Marina Liteyears

Which brings us to why I think Marina would be an outstanding Brawler. For one thing, she would have a completely unique moveset based around using your opponents’ strength against them. Kind of like a Judo master, her moves would be centered around massively powerful throws and misdirection. I could even see her having multiple grab moves mapped to her B attacks. Her Up B could even be a short dash combined with a grab, allowing her to hurl her foe downwards to gain some air, a nasty spike combination attack. Her Standard B would be her primary Shake, allowing her to grab enemies or items and shake them larger. Though this would seem dangerous, since then they would be bigger and more powerful, the shaken items become slower, allowing her more opportunities to cause mayhem. Meanwhile her A attacks and Smashes could be quick, stinging attacks meant to wear your opponent down. Since she’s a robot, Marina would have medium weight, making her hard to Smash off the stage and fast enough to be a nuisance.

Most Wanted Brawler | Marina Liteyears

Best of all, for her Final Smash Marina would call upon her one-time foes, the Beastector soldiers of the Empire. They would arrive in their combined mech unit, which Marina would hurl at foes like a comet. Depending on the angle of your throw, you could make the giant robot ricochet across the screen like an angry Ping Pong ball, doing massive damage. Afterwards, the mech would explode into various smaller pieces that Marina could use as weapons, similar to Zero Suit Samus. And the icing on the cake? For her taunt, Marina would produce a helpless Clancer citizen and “Shake! Shake!” him or her. It may be super unlikely, but if Marina Liteyears joined the roster, I would be extremely happy.

Most Wanted Brawler | Marina Liteyears

So what did you think of this week’s Most Wanted Brawler? Too crazy or not crazy enough? If you’re as big of a fan as me, then you’re probably happy. If you want to be even happier, take a gander at the fantastic Retro Review of Mischief Makers by our own Tyler Lubben! And as always, thanks for making oprainfall and Smashing Saturdays a part of your weekend!

About Josh Speer

Josh is a passionate gamer, finding time to clock in around 30-40 hours of gaming a week. He discovered Operation Rainfall while avidly following the localization of the Big 3 Wii RPGs. He enjoys SHMUPS, Platformers, RPGs, Roguelikes and the occasional Fighter. He’s also an unashamedly giant Mega Man fan, having played the series since he was eight. As Head Editor and Review Manager, he spends far too much time editing reviews and random articles. In his limited spare time he devours indies whole and anticipates the release of quirky, unpredictable and innovative games.