Smashing Saturdays

Friends, it’s been a long, long while since I’ve done one of these. About 4 years, give or take. But to be fair, I haven’t had a sufficient reason to until very recently. But then E3 2018 happened, and they unveiled the latest info about Smash Bros. Ultimate! So starting today, Smashing Saturdays is back, up until the release of Smash Bros. Ultimate in December, or possibly a bit later depending on how long they keep announcing key updates. So that’s about 6 months more of covering the latest updates courtesy of Sakurai and company. Like before, I’ll be covering the latest goodies revealed, whether they be new characters, Assist Trophies, items, music or what have you. Let’s get Smashing!

Smashing Saturdays | Ridley

First of all, I feel the need to discuss the biggest reveal from E3, and one I had actually been speculating about many years ago. Namely, the fact that Ridley could certainly be playable in Smash. Like many fans of the dread Space Pirate, I had to suffer through being ridiculed for years by friends saying “Ridley is too big!” with a snicker. Well, I guess he’s not too big anymore, huh? I couldn’t be more ecstatic about Ridley being playable in Smash Bros. Ultimate, for a few reasons. One, I always like to have a good balance of heroes and villains in Smash. For another, I felt that Ridley would offer a unique playstyle that hadn’t quite been captured by other characters. Sure, he has fireballs kinda like Bowser, and wings like Charizard (AKA Pokémon Trainer pal #3), but from what I’ve heard, Ridley plays completely like himself. Lastly, it just didn’t feel right for a storied series like Metroid to only have one representative (technically two if you count Stripper Samus) while series like Mario, Kirby and Zelda (hell, even Donkey Kong) all had multiple. I’m not saying that we need Kraid as a playable character, but I personally feel Ridley provides a great compromise to all the rabid fans such as myself. Now I just need to wait until PAX West where I can hopefully get some alone time with my favorite Space Pirate!

But that’s not all that happened recently in Smash Bros. news. There’s been some recaps of things revealed at E3, and I’m gonna address them all and provide a bit of assessment. So join me below to see the latest Smash Bros. Ultimate items from the week.

Smashing Saturdays | Alolan Vulpix

This first one was technically from last week, but since I’m playing a bit of E3 catch up, I figure it’s fair game. We always expect a whole host of Pokémon that you can summon from their Pokéballs, but this is the first Smash Bros. game to have Alolan variants! I absolutely loved these in Pokémon Sun & Moon, and it looks like some of them will make their way to this colorful and chaotic fighter. Alolan Vulpix looks to freeze unlucky brawlers in their tracks, and should offer some good opportunities to combo the hell out prone foes. Why burn them when you can freeze them instead? Definite upgrade, in my book.

Next up, we have everybody’s favorite plumber (or not, according to Nintendo), Mario! While the overall wearing hero has always served as an easy to master, all around fighter, now he has the added benefit of Cappy from Super Mario Odyssey! While it’s not entirely clear how Cappy will work in Smash Bros. Ultimate, I can tell you one thing – he’ll be much more useful than that blasted F.L.U.D.D. Here’s hoping Cappy doesn’t make Mario overpowered again, much like he was in Melee

Smashing Saturdays | Battlefield

To the surprise of nobody, Battlefield is back. It looks awfully pretty, but it’s also just the basic vanilla stage we all expect. Love it or hate it, stages like this do serve a good function in the competitive scene.

Smashing Saturdays | Black Hole

Next up, looks like a new item is available in Black Hole. Not to be confused with Palutena’s Black Hole Laser Final Smash, this one looks to suck up all characters and items in nearby vicinity. Much like the many bombs in Smash Bros., you probably ought to keep your distance when you see this item tossed your way!

By clicking here, you can listen to the latest song added, Bomb Rush Blush from the Splatoon series. And speaking of bombs, there’s a new Assist Trophy in town!

Smashing Saturdays | Bomberman

I admit that when I first saw this screen online, my heart went pitter patter thinking Bomberman had been released from Konami prison and redeemed in Smash Bros. Ultimate as a playable character. While that’s not the case, I’m still pleased to see another classic series get representation in this wonderful mash-up game. One interesting detail about Bomberman is that his bombs have cross shaped blast patterns, which makes me think they might remove the X Bomb item from the game. I don’t know that for certain, but generally Sakurai doesn’t like to double up on similar items.

Also to the surprise of nobody, Link is back and sporting a new look from Breath of the Wild. One nice change is that his bombs are now remote controlled! That’s certain to make the elfin hero even more of a threat, and probably a reason they decided not to make Bomberman a playable character. Oh and if that wasn’t enough, now Link can also pick up his fired arrows to use them again. Wonder if that also means his sword will shatter like in Breath of the Wild, or if that honor is still relegated to Robin…

Though I didn’t necessarily miss Ice Climbers, since I never mained them, I’m also kind of glad they’re back. It took true patience to master the delinquent duo, and if nothing else their return means some of the most insane levels from previous Smash Bros. games will return. Also, fun fact, their Final Smash looks to rotate now, just to make that iceburg even more dangerous.

Well guys, it’s good to be back. The original Smashing Saturdays ran 55 articles, so that technically makes this the 56th. I look forward to providing plenty more coverage for you all about Smash Bros. Ultimate. And stay tuned, cause when that game finally releases in December, I plan on posting my Switch code so we can all learn to love Ridley together!

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.