Smash Bros. Weekly Recount Pt. 2

This week, the screenshots released by Sakurai showed a couple of reveals, as well as a bit if comedy.

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The first screenshot came along with a message by Sakurai saying that Samus’ charge shot had been modified and given extra speed and power, which, although useful at times, could be bad for her. Wait, what? That thing is being made even better? How am I supposed to dodge it now?

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The second image was a bit more on the comedic side, with a picture of Mario “proposing” to Peach. Or maybe he’s just punching her, you never know.

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The third screenshot, from the 3DS version of the game, shows Luigi’s enhanced jumping, which makes us wonder if his classic hovering will make a debut in Smash Bros. This could be feasible as he just appeared in his own game (or should we say DLC), New Super Luigi U. 

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On the fourth weekday, it was announced that Toon Link would be joining the roster, being the sixteenth character to do so. This particular screenshot shows him taunting using the Wind Waker baton on the Skyloft stage.

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When Toon Link was announced we weren’t sure if he would be receiving a new moveset or not, but this screenshot confirms that at least the bombs (his B + Down move) will return. From other screenshots we can see that at least the Fairy Bow and his Spin Attack have returned.

That’s it for this week, make sure to come back next time to see if anything has been revealed by Sakurai.

Toon Link Sails Into The Fight

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Following the digital release of Legend of Zelda: The Wind Waker HD, Toon Link has been announced as the sixteenth character to join the brawl. His design looks really good, as the HD complements his unique art style. So far it is unknown if he will still be a clone character, or if he will receive his own moveset to differentiate him from Link, but the screenshots released along with his annoucncement do show some similar moves.

Opinion – Don’t be afraid to be the one dealing out 1-hit K.O.s

Confusing title, I know. It’ll all be clear by the end of this opinion article.

Video games have been, since their humble beginnings all the way back to ‘Pong’ and ‘Space Invader’, majorly based on challenge. Hell, it used to be worthy of pride to have your name up on the high-score list at the local arcade shop. That is all but clear: video games started out as a way to challenge and entertain the player – simply as games.

Yet, we are seeing this medium evolve at a rapid pace. Once, it was all about one simple, primal objective: score as many points as possible. Classics such as ‘Pac Man’ were based on this motivation. This is no more. Sure, you still have this element present in almost every game you might play. The recently released success, ‘Grand Theft Auto V’ is littered with minigames as basic as your average arcade game. Each mission you play is ranked through a percentage, and you are given the gold, silver or bronze for it. However, are players really feeling the same motivation with this, as they were back in the dawn of video games? The answer is no.

This is because video games are becoming deep and immersive experiences, as they delve into the journey of its evolution as a form of entertainment and art. Gamers are now playing the games to experience a new world, and a new story.

Now that my little introduction is settled, let’s talk about my argument here. Not long ago, I was discussing ‘The Elder Scrolls IV: Oblivion’ (my favourite game of all time) with a friend. I told him that at first, I began playing through the game at a moderate difficulty level. Unfortunately, this meant that battles would take much longer than usual, and I was killed and sent to the dreaded last checkpoint more than a few times. This was not the way I wanted to experience the game, as it just stalled my exploration of the stunning and rich world of Cyrodiil. So I went to the settings menu, and pushed the difficulty bar about 1/5th down. He seemed appalled by this, but I haven’t messed with that bar since.

The problem was, an increased difficulty was not delivering the expectation I had with the game. I simply wanted to become a hero from a high-fantasy story. The Hero of Kvatch. The Champion of Cyrodiil. That was NOT the hero who would be killed by a couple of Scamps and a Clannfear try after try. Turning the difficulty to that level, and making the battles extremely easy to win made the game virtually challenge-less, and that is exactly what made my gaming experience so much better. After realizing this, I did the exact same thing for ‘Fallout 3’. And the ‘Halo: Reach’ campaign. And ‘Halo: 4’. And countless other games.

Don’t get me wrong, I love a game with a challenge. Sometimes, all you want is to push your limits and reach that high score. One of the best gaming experiences in my opinion, is to grab a bunch of pals, sit down, and settle a 4 vs. 4 fight in ‘Super Smash Bros. Brawl’. I spent my best moments in ‘World of Warcraft’ at the battleground or fighting through dungeons with a party. But sometimes it’s just nice to take it down a notch, and enjoy the ride without any major bumps on the road.

So, here I am offering an alternative to all who fail to enjoy the richness of a game’s world because of the challenge it presents. You’re gonna want to navigate the menus, find the difficulty settings, turn them down, and just let the dust build up on that option.

Smash Bros. Weekly Recount:

Each weekday, Masahiro Sakurai, creator of the Smash Bros. series posts a screenshot from the latest installment for Wii U & 3DS. Every weekend, we here at The Gaming Fix will recollect all of the screenshots for your viewing pleasure.

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The first image is a screenshot from the 3DS version, showing how Olimar will look, and is presumably from the Battlefield stage.

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Tuesday’s image shows us all three of the confirmed female characters, with Peach having recently joined the roster.

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The third image is just a close up of Pyrosphere’s background, and that’s about it. It is currently unknown if the stage will transition through this particular hole or if it’s just a background texture.

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Our fourth image is just Peach sighing at Link’s sight… Is she flirting with him? That’s up to you.

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The fifth and final image shows the return of a technique that was previously introduced in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, called footstool, which involved jumping on an opponent’s head and stunning them momentarily.

Preview: The calm before the storm

As most of you should know, we are mere hours away from what will be a pair of weeks with three major videogame releases: First off is the Wii U exclusive The Wonderful 101 (Wii U/2013/Platinum Games). Ever since it was shown at this year’s E3 much uncertainty has followed this game: Will it be able to end with Nintendo’s Wii U related drought? Will it live up to the high standards which were put up by its spiritual predecessor Viewtiful Joe? Will it finally usher in a new generation of exclusives which make full use of the Wii U’s capabilities? All of this will be answered starting off from tomorrow, when this game will be released and will mark the beginning of what is an upcoming couple of weeks with two major releases in completely opposing ends of the spectrum: On one side will be the much awaited GTA V and the expected sequel to the football series’ FIFA 14.

Not many new information can be said about GTA V (PS3 & XBOX 360/2013/Rockstar Games) other than what is already known, such as the sheer grandeur of its map size, the amount of missions and side-events which will be available, the famous musical variety within the in-game radio stations and the borderline-socially acceptable aspects of the game series. Both new prospects to the series and old-timers will be eager to get their hands on it in order to have a good time through morally outrageous means: Be it literally ignoring everything else and committing a grand theft auto or following the campaign and trying to be one of the first people to finish it, GTA V guarantees a large amount of fun and time wastage in the coming week.

Lastly, just as there are Videogame series which are popular for innovating there are also series which have gained the fame of being recycled year in and year out (and no, I am not talking about COD). FIFA 14 (PS3, PS2, PC, XBOX 360 & Handhelds) which used to be a revolutionary series and synonymous with innovation in the world of sports videogames has now had a large amount of negativity following it for the wrong reasons. See, as a lifelong football fan it pains me to admit that while the FIFA series is not completely obsolete, it has certainly decreased its value for money over the past few years since it started to become primarily centered on graphics increases and renaming of players. However, after watching the new features of the game and the (potentially) brilliant features which the Ignite engine will bring to the PS4 and XBOX One versions of the game, there is still a small but present probability that the series might actually retake its title of the king of sports videogames this year and return to the golden age when it was a certain day-1 purchase.

Zelda II Available Now On Wii U VC

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Zelda II: The Adventure of Link has now been released for the Wii U’s Virtual Console service through the Nintendo eShop. This unexpected announcement follows the release of classic Legend of Zelda a few weeks back.

The Adventure of Link is highly regarded as the franchise’s hardest game due to its unforgiving mechanics and difficult bosses and enemies. Fans of the Zelda franchise should always consider adding this game to their roster.

You can find it now at the Nintendo eShop for $4.99.

Princess Peach joins the fight!

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Earlier today it was confirmed that the ruler of the Mushroom Kingdom will be the fifteenth character to join the roster. More details to follow.

Peach has appeared in two games, Melee and Brawl so it’s no surprise to see the veteran in the roster.

Judging from the screenshots posted along with her announcement, her moveset will not include any major overhauls. She still retains her B Toad move and her B-sideways charge. It is still too early to know for sure if her moveset will remain the same though.