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My Quick Thoughts on Shulk in Super Smash Bros

Yesterday was a crazy day for Nintendo fans. Between the new handhelds and the Amiibos, the house of Mario was going nuts with a ton of announcements both exciting and controversial. With the latest announcement about Super Smash Bros, I guess it hits somewhere in the middle of those 2. It’s exciting because Smash fans get a new character and Xenoblade fans have gotten what they wanted. It’s controversial because just last week, we had a big leak that I guess can be considered real now. (A retraction has already been posted to my previous post on the Super Smash Bros leak).

But yes, to the surprise of just about no one and the excited of just about everybody, Shulk of the popular Wii game Xenoblade Chronicles is the latest addition to the Smash Bros roster. He is now #38 in our ever-growing list of fighters.

You know, I like this announcement a lot more than I thought I would. I knew dang well that Shulk was going to be announced some time. He was leaked by both Gematsu and by 4Chan, and he was one of the most requested first-party characters ever. I really didn’t care before since I never played a Xenoblade game before. But when I finally saw the trailer, I was singing a different tune.

This guy is a beast! No joke, He has this awesome sword thing called the Monando that can just launch a motherfucker. His counter ability is just devastating. Don’t even get me started on his range. Yikes! He can definitely hit you from a good distance. Yeah he’ll do just fine.

I do like his moveset, and his trailer. But my thoughts were very limited. So I took the video to my little brother to get another opinion. He, like me, has never played a Xenoblade game, but is excited for the new Smash Bros. His response was that while he does like the character, he feels that he’ll be a bit overpowered in the game.

I do doubt that Shulk will be overpowered when the game is finally released, but I will agree with him on the fact that the trailer made him seem that way. Just a small nitpick. Overall, I’m pretty happy to see Shulk finally get announced. I believe there are Xenoblade fans that were very happy yesterday (before they heard about Chronicles being New 3DS exclusive).

I’ll close this out with one more thing. It appears that Gematsu’s tack record is near flawless. The only thing they get wrong so far was Chrom being playable. Chrom is technically in the game, though. That’s still about a 94%, which is still an A. With that said, there is just one character left on the Gematsu list: Chorus Men from Rhythm Heaven. So what do I think about his/their chances? It’s very likely. The thing about them is that I can just as easily see him/them as assist trophies. And given Chrom, it’s likely Shulk was it for Gematsu. The way people are describing them, I think it would be interesting. I won’t hold my breath or anything, but it is seeming very likely. We can at least be assured that he/they are in the game somewhere. That’s one thing they have always gotten right.

That’s it for me. What do you guys think of Shulk’s inclusion? Are you surpised at all? Do you like the character trailer? Are you excited at all for the new Smash Bros game? And what are your thoughts on what this means for the Chorus Men? Let me know in the comments.

I’m SBox180. Thanks for reading!

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SBox Soapbox: Is the Super Smash Bros. Roster Leak Real?

(Update: This article was made before the release of the leaked gameplay footage on YouTube and the announcement of Shulk on August 29. This is not only out of date, it is incorrect.)


 

Half the fun of a new Super Smash Bros game actually occurs before the game even comes out. In the 2 years since Super Smash Bros for 3DS and Wii U was announced, fans such as you and I have been speculating about the roster. We’ve been arguing, debating, predicting, and hoping for so long now which Nintendo icons will appear in this installment of Smash Bros. Well, the game is mere months away, so now is a good time for leaks like this to hit the web and spread just one more ounce of chaos in the community.

From the people who brought you popular Internet memes and the most notorious incidents on the Internet. 4Chan has supposedly leaked the Super Smash Bros 4 roster.

This picture seems to be of the 3DS version of the game and is said to be captured by an ESRB insider. The roster reveals several veterans of the series (Ness, Ganondorf, Falco, Wario, Jigglypuff, Dark Pit, Mr. Game and Watch, ROB and Dr. Mario) and some unannounced newcomers (Shulk, Bowser Jr, Dark Pit and Duck Hunt Dog). It also insists that the game will have DLC for later release (Lucas, Wolf, Snake, Ice Climbers and Chorus Men).

This leak has caught fire in the past day due to how real it looks. It looks like the real deal and just might be. All characters make sense to exist in the game, and boxes fit seamlessly. People are currently debating, with very sound arguments for it’s legitimacy. This is extremely debatable, but I am here today to give you my thoughts on these images and info.

Is it real? I’m going to say no. But let’s figure this out together.

Game & Watch’s arm

This one was the straw that broke the camel’s back for me. I thought this was extremely real at first until I took a closer look. If you look at the top right of the main roster, you will see that Mr. Game & Watch is playable with Wario to his immediate left. Now that’s not the strange part. Notice how Mr. Game & Watch’s hand seems to be hovering over Wario’s slot image. That to me gave it away a bit for me.

You could look at that and think differently, though. Because of the image quality, that could also be a bit of Wario’s jacket in a very unfortunate spot. Personally, I see the hand. That leaves me with 4 theories.

  1. That is a Photoshop or other photo editing software mistake that was overlooked. In the case of Photoshop, they most likely forgot to place the image tab beneath the boundaries of the square, making Game & Watch stand out.
  2. That is indeed just a part of Wario’s jacket coincidentally placed where it can be confused for Game & Watch’s hand.
  3. This is just a bug left in the game itself that Sakurai and Nintendo forgot to fix.
  4. Mr. Game & Watch clearly doesn’t respect other people’s personal boundaries.

That leaves us at a 50/50 scenario. I will admit I could be very wrong about this observation, but I can’t be the only one who sees this. It’s a bit too coincidental.

This can’t be everybody

I know, I know. This game could have 46 characters or 146 characters and people will still complain about how their favorite character didn’t make the cut. I get that. But looking at what was shown, I think there is something off.

The returning veterans I understand- Ganondorf, Ness, etc. They all work. I have a bone to pick though with 2 characters that aren’t here: Ridley and Mewtwo. Bare with me here. This isn’t just me being sour. Personally, I can live with those two not being in the game if it turns out to be true. I’m just looking at Sakurai’s track record, and seeing things not add up.

Let’s start with Ridley. The immediate argument among this very split debate is that Ridley could never have been an option to begin with. I would agree with you on some parts, but let’s rewind back to April. There’s a big Nintendo Direct and tons of information are flying at us. In the middle of the Direct, they discuss stage bosses and particularly point out the Yellow Devil in the Dr. Whily Castle stage. he then states that “There will be other boss appearances”. Along comes an image that is no doubt Ridley’s shadow, and the internet goes crazy.

If Ridley was just a stage hazard in the game, why wouldn’t Sakurai have just spit it out already. I get the concept of trolling, but everything Sakurai says and shows is always so carefully said, and meticulously implemented. In that same Direct, he showed a trophy of a Possessed Pauletina, only for her to be announced 2 months later. In Smash’s debut, Toon Link was in the background of the Spirit Train, only for him to be announced a couple months later. You see the pattern here.

Sakurai always flat-out states what purpose a character serves once they are brought up by name. He doesn;t dance around it. Ridley was not only never discussed by name, but teased with the wording of “appearance” in order to throw people off. Therefore, I deduce that Ridley is playable… or an assist trophy I guess.

Then there is Mewtwo. Mewtwo is a shoe-in for the game, and no one denies it. He’s very popular, and fans have arguably demanded Mewtwo’s presence more than any other character. Sakurai knows dang well that people want Mewtwo in the game. Sakurai has made it a very careful priority to avoid discussion of Mewtwo. And the fact he is holding this information in for so long has to mean something.

This roster does acknowledge the possibility of Melee returns, but we’ll get to that later.

Other design coincidences

The most questionable part of the roster is not just the characters, but also the placement of the characters.

If you notice the selection screen of the past Super Smash Bros games, all of the characters were arranged by franchise. The Mario characters were all grouped together, as were the characters from Fire Emblem, Zelda, Pokemon and so on. That has always been the case, but this image scatter quite a few of them.

Let’s take a closer look.

A good number of characters are out of order. Mario characters are all across the top in this image, but Dr. Mario is all the way toward the bottom. In fact, Game & Watch and Dr. Mario should’ve switched places. Yoshi and Wario are also technically representing their own franchises just as Donkey Kong is. That also makes Yoshi’s placement off since Rosalina and Bowser Jr. are Mario characters.

Dark Pit and Lucina are also out of place with Dr. Mario. I’ve heard theories that the reason those 3 are grouped together is because they’re all clone characters. That would make some sense if not for the fact that Toon Link is seen with the Zelda characters as he should be. Toon Link is a clone, too.

Not only that, the designs of some of the newcomers is a bit fake looking. A quick Google Image search can show the models of characters like Dr. Mario and Ness. Dark Pit himself looks like Pit’s model inverted.

The DLC

DLC is a touchy subject when it comes to Super Smash Bros. It is neither denied or confirmed by Nintendo, and fans seem to have very positive or negative feelings towards DLC. According to this leak, DLC is not only going to be a thing with this game. It is aso going to include some Brawl veterans.

That’s all fine and good, but the choice of DLC characters are fishy. I can buy that Lucas (sadly), Chorrus Men and Wolf are DLC to a certain degree. That’s 2 semi-clones and a newcomer. I don’t buy the Ice Climber and Snake being DLC.

The Ice Climbers are fan favorites and staples of the series. You can argue that the twins are kinda hard to program on 3DS, but that doesn’t explain Olimar or Rosalina being there from the get-go.

As for Snake, he is a third-party character. I doubt that Nintendo would strike a deal with Konami for the rights to Snake, and have him not present in the game from the start. And I can’t even believe that Sakurai and Kojima struck this deal late enough to make him DLC; not when Sonic was announced so early.

Where this all comes from

Imagine you were the leaker. You just got your hands on this information, you take those pictures and you are determined to get this info out to the world. Where would you place such information so that the word can spread and be considered legitimate? I don’t know. How about 4Chan? Because the prank capital of the web is the best possible location for official information to be posted and be expected to have credibility.

I believe there are far better places to post these images. Grant it, I still wouldn’t believe it, but it would be less suspicious on a site like NeoGAF or something. Hell, sending a tip to Gematsu would’ve been one of the best calls.


So, that’s my take on the Super Smash Bro for 3DS leak. Like I said, I could definitely be wrong. I just personally doubt its credibility. I will give whoever made this credit on the detail. At the end of the day, if this really is the roster, would I be happy with it? I’d be a bit disappointed in some respects, but I’d be satisfied.

What do you guys think? Do you think this roster legit or not? Are you satisfied by the characters shown? Let me know, and we can speculate together.

I’m SBox180. Thanks for reading!

My Quick Thoughts on the Batman v Superman leaked trailer

I am making this post now while the trailer is still fresh in my mind and while the video can still be found. That way I will regret nothing when the video can no longer be seen.

Yes, the highly anticipated Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice had a very big presence at San Diego’s Comic Con 2014. We got everything from the Batman suit display, to the first Wonder Woman image, to the dimly-lit Bat-selfie. What we unfortunately didn’t get was the trailer. Oh it was there alright, but not for the eyes of mere mortals like you and I who couldn’t attend Comic Con. We have to wait for Warner Bros and DC to make such awesomeness public… or do we?

Thanks to our sneaky little friends who were at Comic Con who used their camera, the whole gets to see what they saw that fateful day. For those watching this in the not-so-distant future who won’t be seeing this for a good while, here’s what was shown in short.

It all starts with Batman on a rooftop turning on the Bat signal. The signal shines on a flying Superman who looks down to Batman. Batman looks back to Superman with glowing white eyes, and Superman retaliates by showing his red eyes. And then… there was the logo.

I feel bad if you didn’t see the trailer in time because, believe me, it’s much more awesome than it sounds. It’s such a simplistic and seemingly insignificant value of about a minute, but it’s so cool!

Now I’m not the biggest comic book guy at all. I am not the guy to go as in-depth as a die-hard fan would, but I still have a small bit to share.

For one thing, I like how the Batman suit looks in motion. We’ve seen a few instances of the suit in pictures and snippets, but we haven’t actually seen that thing with Ben Affleck doing things in it. It seems kind of slow yet it manages to seem menacing almost as if it’s calculating every move. Really intimidating and awesome stuff, even though we don’t see his face.

In a way, they should just not show the eyes of either. I like it that way. It captures the more cartoony (I don’t mean that in a bad way) nature of the comic book designs. And from what I’ve heard from fans, it looks extremely faithful to the original comic.

Superman’s suit is hard to see, as is everything, but it seems virtually the same as in Man of Steel. It makes sense that Not too much to add here except that I like how Superman’s eyes ended the trailer and lead into the logo; almost to suggest that crap went down right then.

So, that’s my two cents. Sorry this isn’t the most interpretation out there, but there is plenty of places to find the comic fans’ point of view. What did you think of the teaser trailer if you saw it? Did you catch something I didn’t? (Of course you have). Let me know, and we can be excited for the 2016 release together.

I’m SBox180. Thanks for reading!