In an interview over the weekend with Nintendo Dream magazine, Masahiro Sakurai spoke about some interesting details about Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The interview reveals some neat details about the characters we got and what could have been.
Old, new, and unused.
Most of the information from the Nintendo Dream interview, which was in Japanese, comes from a Twitter thread by @PushDustIn. The first bit of information has to do with Incineroar, the final base fighter. The fully-evolved Fire starter from Pokémon Sun and Moon almost didn’t make it into Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Initially, Decidueye, the fully-evolved form of Sun and Moon’s Grass starter would be fighter 69.
Sakurai confirms in an interview: Decidueye was almost chosen for the new Pokémon spot.
— PushDustIn (@PushDustIn) January 20, 2019
Speaking of unused characters, players likely expected representatives from ARMS or Xenoblade Chronicles 2. According to Sakurai, “bad timing for the project plan” caused both games to miss out. Fortunately, Xenoblade Chronicles 2 has representation via assist trophy, and there are rumors ARMS will get a DLC character. We’ll have to see how that goes.
The rest of the interesting details involves characters that made the cut, new and old.
- Zelda is based off of the Zelda players meet in the SNES game The Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past and its 3DS remake A Link Between Worlds.
- Simon and Richter Belmont, King K. Rool, and Ridley were chosen based off of results for 2015’s Smash Ballot initiative for the fourth Smash game. In other words, players did sort of choose who’d appear in Smash Ultimate.
- Piranha Plant, the first DLC character (but not the first character pack), was chosen because “he wasn’t a hero”. Sakurai and co. felt it would be boring if they only chose obvious heroes (and some villains) for the roster, and Piranha Plant is fairly well-known.
- The design philosophy for King K. Rool was to look like a heavy character but play like a medium one.
Meanwhile, for those curious about DLC, Piranha Plant is set to arrive sometime in February.