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Found 6 results

  1. With less than 24 hours to go until its release, Super Smash Bros. for Wii U is nearly upon us. After watching the Nintendo Direct that highlighted 50 previously unknown facts about the game and seeing the breadth of content it contains, it became clear that this would be the version of the game to get if you had to choose between it and the 3DS version. And yet, despite the Wii U version's obvious superiority, I can't help but feel a bit sad about certain features that won't be in it. Granted, there isn't a whole lot of content that is exclusive to the 3DS version, and not all of it is great (certain exclusive levels aren't all that great), but at least some of it is. And since we won't be seeing them making the hop over, here are five things I'll miss from Super Smash Bros. for 3DS that won't be in the Wii U version. 5. Dream Land The stage based on Kirby's Dreamland for the Game Boy was one of the biggest surprises for me, having not had it spoiled before-hand. Design-wise, there isn't anything that makes it a particularly amazing level to play on, but for Kirby fans who grew up with series, it definitely hits that nostalgic sweet spot and ends up being one of the more clever retro-inspired levels the game offers, complete with areas from multiple stages throughout the original game and a few that even scroll through the level. Of course, seeing the Game Boy outline around the screen and the greenish monochrome visuals really sells the whole experience and makes it one of the more charming levels to play in. Unfortunately, this is one of the levels specific to the 3DS version, due to its handheld theme. With the Wii U slated to focus on console game-based stages for the characters in its roster, hopefully we'll get a level that's similar to this; perhaps one based on Kirby's Adventure or Kirby Super Star. 4. 3DS-Specific Trophies While not a huge loss given that Super Smash Bros. for Wii U will feature even more trophies than the 3DS version did, it's still a shame that we won't see some of them. Specifically, each character's Alt trophy (which were attained through beating All-Star mode) will likely disappear in lieu of Final Smash trophies coming back, and trophies that are focused on items, enemies, and many (but not all) characters in handheld games (like Spirit Tracks, Paper Mario: Sticker Star, Fire Emblem Awakening, Animal Crossing: New Leaf, etc.) will be gone in favor of those series' console games instead. On the flipside, this is one of the cooler 3DS-exclusive aspects of the game, and while it's by no means a main reason to buy the handheld version, it does remain an interesting one for those who are interested in seeing/collecting everything. 3. Tortimer Island Yet another stage exclusive to Smash 3DS, Tortimer Island is based on the location of the same name from Animal Crossing: New Leaf. It's one of the most interesting and best new levels introduced in the 3DS version due to it being mostly flat (and thus being ideal fighting terrain), but also because it isn't a virtual clone or visual palette swap of past stages like some others are (like Unova League, Arena Ferox, Rainbow Road, and Paper Mario). What also makes it interesting is that the layout changes each time you play on it, meaning that the stage could be barren except for one tree and a pier on the left end while another time there might be two or even three trees occupying the middle of the stage with the location of the pier reversed. The trees themselves can vary as well, and drop health-restoring fruit or ones that are hard and can be thrown at your opponents to damage them. Above all else, it gets the location just right, with charming little touches like Kap'n coming and going with his boat, one of his family members appearing in the background (along with the family hut), an occasional shark in the water that will attack if you get too close, and more. 2. Spirit Train The last exclusive level on this list and probably my most favorite of them is the Spirit Train stage, based on The Legend of Zelda: Spirit Tracks. In addition to having a great stage theme (with the Spirit Tracks medley playing), Spirit Train is just an exciting stage to fight on given the movement and idea of fighting on a moving train, especially given that you might lose a life if you fall off and onto the tracks. It also has a number of surprises and events that happen, such as other trains approaching from the front or behind, platforms appearing above, and even large platformed areas popping up in the rear of the train, keeping things entertaining. But more than anything, it's also one of the best looking levels thanks to its colorfulness and sweeping vistas in the background. While the Wii U version will be getting a level based on Skyloft from Skyward Sword, Spirit Train will definitely be missed, especially since it seems to be more unique between the two levels. 1. Smash Run Love it or hate it, Smash Run is the single biggest exclusive feature/mode that Super Smash Bros. for 3DS has going for it (aside from its portability, that is). Outside of Classic and All-Star Mode, it could be considered the closest thing to a campaign that this version has. Essentially, it's almost a story-less, revamped version of the Subspace Emissary mode from Super Smash Bros. Brawl, but with one single, massive level to explore and a time limit. At first, I was indifferent to it, but over time, it actually grew on me. Fighting various enemies from different franchises that you could only see in this mode is one part of why I enjoy it, but it really is like an adventure and it's fun to explore around, finding stat increases, treasures, and the like. More than anything, it's fun to see how far you can raise your stats before time runs out, watching your character grow stronger and stronger along the way. If Subspace Emissary didn't do anything for you, Smash Run probably won't either, but it's an inclusion that I'm glad director Masahiro Sakurai decided to add, and I expect it to be the main reason I'll still pick up and play Smash 3DS even after the Wii U version releases. Do you agree with my list? Disagree? Which features exclusive to Super Smash Bros. for 3DS do you like best? Let me know in the comments below!
  2. Marcus Estrada

    Super Smash Bros Wii U/3DS Forgoes Story Mode

    If you played Super Smash Bros. Brawl on the Wii then you likely spent at least a little time with the Subspace Emissary mode. This section was very strange to Super Smash Bros. veterans due to it being new for the version. What it did was offer a general story to base gameplay around and featured cutscenes with the different series characters as well. Perhaps the reaction to Subspace Emissary was not worth the cost it took to produce. In any case, the upcoming versions of Super Smash Bros. will not have another story mode. Kotaku was able to translate a Weekly Famitsu column with Masahiro Sakurai and this is some of what he had to say: “Unfortunately, the movie scenes we worked hard to create were uploaded onto the internet. You can only truly wow a player the first time he sees [a cutscene]. I felt if players saw the cutscenes outside of the game, they would no longer serve as rewards for playing the game, so I“ve decided against having them.” It sure seems an odd reason considering every game gets its gameplay and cutscenes posted to the internet. What if every developer decided to stop creating stories because people would get them 'for free' by watching a stream or video? In any case, you'll find no story or exciting, well done cutscenes to accompany it in either version of Super Smash Bros.
  3. Video game development can be exciting, but it can also be quite a pain at times as well, especially when a dev team enters the crunch period. In the case of Masahiro Sakurai, creator of Kirby and renowned developer of the Super Smash Bros. series, that pain is a very literal reality at the moment as he has recently been diagnosed with calcific tendonitis and several ruptures in the muscles according to his latest column in Famitsu, according to Polygon. The diagnosis comes about a month after Sakurai revealed that he had Repetitive Strain Injury (or RSI), making it difficult for him to use a mouse, keyboard, or gamepad for an extended period of time without experiencing pain. "It's posing problems when I'm test-playing something in progress," Sakurai noted. "I figure that if I cut down on writing emails and other things, try not to type in so much data myself, and start giving more verbal directions, that'll reduce the amount of keyboard-oriented work I have to do," he said. But if I'm going to be supervising other people's work, there's no way to cut down the amount of mouse usage I need to perform. I'm trying to work it with my left hand in order to give the right one some rest, but that definitely cuts down on my work efficiency..." In order to get around his RSI, his solution was to use a trackball in its place; something that was actually used to draw Kirby in the beginning, interestingly enough. Unfortunately, he doesn't quite have that option when it comes to playtesting games. "There's no instant cure for it, so all I can do is either block the pain with injections or put my arm in a cast to keep the ruptures from spreading," Sakurai continued. "I was told that the important thing was to keep my arm as rested as possible. In order to get it fully healed, the only thing is to not use my right arm or hand. So not only am I using a trackball with my left hand; now I'm using it to eat, brush my teeth, wash my hair, and even drive as much as I'm able to." Naturally, this injury has taken somewhat of a toll on the upcoming Super Smash Bros. games in development for Wii U and 3DS, and because of that, Sakurai noted that even he isn't sure what sort of overall impact this will have on the project if things don't get better. "Often I go in on my off-days to catch up on my own work, but with my body going on me like this, I have to cut these extra days out of my schedule and even with that I can't use my right arm very much to control things," he explained. "If this disorder lingers, or if it never gets fixed, there's no telling what impact that would have on the project." Until Sakurai's arm is better, it appears that development on the next Super Smash Bros. will be a bit more slow going than usual, but he's determined to do what he can to remain as active as possible on the project in the meantime. This news does make one wonder if his team and Namco Bandai will be able to produce a playable demo for E3 as Nintendo previously hoped for in a previous Nintendo Direct, but it appears we won't know until closer to the show now. Despite his physical limitations at the moment, though, Sakurai stated that he now realizes how important it is to have your health and that he is glad he's still in good enough to shape to work. Hopefully he'll be back in top form sometime soon. Source: Polygon (1, 2)
  4. There was a moment during yesterday's Wii U Direct broadcast when Nintendo President Satoru Iwata mentioned that the next Super Smash Bros. game for both Wii U and 3DS would be shown at this year's E3. But in this stage of development, you wouldn't really expect much. However, Masahiro Sakurai, who we all know as the father of Super Smash Bros. and the well-praised Kid Icarus: Uprising, has given Iwata's announcement some clarity via Twitter, and it appears that we could be getting a little bit more than we expect. The English translation of Sakurai's tweet (he's Japanese, in case you hadn't realized) reads "Wii U and 3DS versions -- I would like to show you both." He goes on to mention other announced games and what to expect from E3 2013, saying that “Other games have had visuals shown, but you still have to wait for Smash Bros. But we'll be able to release something better.†Something better? During yesterday's Wii U broadcast, Iwata told us that they would be showing "screens" of the new Smash Bros. From what Sakurai says, however, it sounds as if we might actually be getting something more than that. A trailer, perhaps? Later in Sakurai's tweet session, he apologized for announcing the game long before they even began working on it, but he promises that fans of the Smash Bros. series will be getting more from the new title, and that they should prepare themselves. So get ready, Smash Bros. fans, 'cause something big's heading to E3! How excited are you to see the new Smash Bros. at E3? What do you think Sakurai's bringing to the party that's "better" than visuals?
  5. It seems that quite a few people are worried that Namco's inclusion in the next Super Smash Bros. installment may mean an influx of Tekken characters, but Tekken series director Katsuhiro Harada quelled any rumors about it by saying that Smash Bros.' design is still in the hands of series director Masahiro Sakurai. Speaking to Dusty Cartridge, Harada said: "Although we“ll help provide support on technology and other things involved creating the game, I“m currently very focused on the Tekken series. Some people might say online that I“m going to be involved in the development process or not but that shouldn“t really be an issue because the game design is going to be handled Masahiro Sakurai. So I don“t understand why there would be any worries there." He also reiterated the fact that the final roster choices were completely up to Sakurai as well; a fact that is ultimately comforting since Harada has had people in both camps saying that they either want to exclude Tekken characters or absolutely include them. "Obviously I“m not going to say to Sakurai, “We want Tekken characters, please put it in” — that“s not the case, so people don“t have to worry about that," said Harada. "The sole decision will probably be made in a way that if more people want Tekken characters in it then Sakurai might choose to do so, if not then so be it." It'll be interesting to see whether characters from Tekken make it into the final game. Personally, I think it's possible we could see one or two make it in - perhaps Julie Chang or Asuka Kazama would fit in with the Smash crew. One thing's for sure though - you can probably count out seeing Heihachi in the next Smash Bros. since he has a long, rich history with Playstation and was recently revealed to be a character in the upcoming Playstation All-Stars Battle Royale. Meanwhile, Harada made it clear that he is primarily focused on the Tekken franchise, including the upcoming Tekken Tag Tournament 2. Would you want to see Tekken characters in the next Super Smash Bros.?
  6. Jordan Haygood

    Review: Kid Icarus: Uprising

    Developer: Project Sora Publisher: Nintendo Platform: Nintendo 3DS Release Date: Out Now ESRB: E10+ for Everyone 10+ "Sorry to keep you waiting!" When these words were first uttered at Nintendo's E3 2010 press conference, they were quickly followed by a certain flightless angel, who had been missing-in-action for the past 20 years, swooping onto the scene to announce a new Kid Icarus game. Needless to say, not many people were expecting this. But our expectations are meaningless in this case, because it happened. After all these years, we finally return to Skyworld in Kid Icarus: Uprising for the Nintendo 3DS. So does this long overdue sequel ascend into greatness, or do Pit's wings burn as the game comes crashing down into a pitfall (get it?)? Let's find out, shall we? After making us wait for over 20 years, Pit finally returns. Kid Icarus: Uprising puts you in the sandals of the cherub warrior known as Pit, who is fighting to save the world from Medusa and her Underworld army. If this plot sounds familiar to you long-time fans, it should. The game begins with a plot fairly similar to that of the original, where Medusa also wreaked havoc with her crazy shenanigans. Uprising, however, takes place after the snake-haired goddess has somehow been resurrected. You'll find out how before the halfway point, as well as the role her resurrection plays in the bigger picture. And no, I won't spoil it for you. If you're interested in Greek mythology, Kid Icarus: Uprising does a great job reinventing it with its own creative charm. There are some familiar faces to mythology such as the flamboyant God of Death Thanatos, the petrifying Goddess of Darkness Medusa, and [censored due to spoilers], as well as the series' own original characters such as the Goddess of Light Lady Palutena, a certain reimagining of Mother Nature known as Viridi, and, of course, Pit. By the way, Pit actually alludes to the story of Icarus - an angel who flew too close to the sun that he burned his wings and became unable to fly (hence the title of the series). And don't worry if you haven't played the old NES classic or its Game Boy sequel, because everything you need to know is explained within the first few chapters of Kid Icarus: Uprising. The game does a great job re-introducing spectators to the main players of the Kid Icarus series, as well as the newcomers who introduce themselves later in the game. Our favorite two-headed dog also makes a return While we're on the topic of the story, the writing in Kid Icarus: Uprising is superb. The writers did a brilliant job writing a story that hooks players from the start and keeps them hooked throughout the game with its interesting characters and intricate plot points. Once you get through one chapter, something big happens in the next chapter that gives you that itch to play more as you get further and further into the plot. And that itch is hard to scratch without playing all the way through to the end. And it's not just the story that's well-written; the dialogue in Kid Icarus: Uprising is often very funny, with humorous jokes, cheesy lines often followed up by sarcastic remarks that point out the cheese, and a complete lack of fear when breaking the fourth wall (such as Pit pointing out how much one of the enemies looks like a metroid). And to top it all off, these lines are all complimented very well with some astonishing voice work (albeit a tad annoying at times). Of course, the dialogue can also be a hit-and-miss at times. While it's fun to listen to the witty banter between the characters, it can sometimes get in the way, since characters will often converse while you're fighting enemies. Basically, there will be times when you have to make a choice between ignoring the dialogue and fighting with precision or listening to the conversations and getting pummeled by enemy fire. It's a tough choice sometimes, and only a master multitasker can do both with relative ease. Another thing that compliments the quirky dialogue of this game very well are the game's colorful and overall stunning visuals. It's like watching a classic cartoon Disney movie - it simply wouldn't work as well without the surreal imagery. The game is simply gorgeous, showing us just how stellar 3DS graphics can be. And that's only the primer of the graphics; when you see the true polish of Uprising with the 3D turned on, the game really shines. It's a visually-striking experience that will keep you staring at the screen until your eyes burst. Soaring through the gorgeous skies is truly magical We spoke earlier about how astonishing the voice acting in Kid Icarus: Uprising is, but that was only the tip of the iceberg with just how good the audio work is in general. The sound effects in Uprising aren't really the auditory focal point of the game, but they get the job done. You'll hear many bashing, blasting, and bursting sounds as you fight enemies, and that's about it. But all that, along with the other 20% of the game's sound effects, are top-notch and realistic enough to sound how a game should sound these days. Of course, the true auditory focal point of Uprising, as with most games, is the soundtrack. And boy does this game deliver. First off, the game gives us some classic Kid Icarus tunes remixed for this fully orchestrated musical masterpiece. Well, I guess I shouldn't say FULLY orchestrated, as the game also gives the original a few more nods by throwing some sweet chiptunes into the mix. And as far as original music goes...well, I did call this soundtrack a musical masterpiece, didn't I? Here's an example of why I think so: Dat Spanish guitar... In terms of gameplay, Kid Icarus: Uprising is many things. For starters, each chapter begins with roughly five minutes of in-air, on-rail shooting similar to games like Sin & Punishment. These sections of the chapters are always such rewarding experiences, and a splendid way to begin levels. Being on-rails, you move your little angel around the screen, dodging projectiles as he travels along a set path. You also have a reticle in front of Pit that you control using either the stylus or the face buttons. This reticle acts as the aiming tool for Pit's own projectiles, which you fire via the left shoulder button. It's very fun and engaging, with special thanks going to the amazing cinematics that you see in the world around you. And the reason you get only five minutes of flight has something to do with Pit being the flightless angel that he is. Your buddy, Lady Palutena, uses her powers to give Pit the ability to fly, but her powers limit you to only five minutes at a time. This explanation, of course, is just an excuse to force the gameplay mechanics to shift and keep the game interesting. However, things get a bit cumbersome once you put your feet on the ground. During ground-based sections of the chapters, you are no longer on-rails and have total control over Pit, fighting enemies head-on as you take him through the levels. But since you are no longer following a set path, you now have to guide Pit a full 360 degrees, which is where the control scheme turns a little sour. As a beginner, you'll find that using the stylus to aim this way is pretty difficult, and the complete change in simplicity can make you feel a bit aggravated at first. You'll get used to it over time, but many players might get turned off by this and give up on the game before that ever happens. Not to mention the 3DS itself is a tough beast to handle when it comes to playing on the ground. Using the circle pad, left trigger, and stylus throughout the game makes holding the system highly uncomfortable after a short while. This is exactly why the game comes packaged with a little stand to play the game on, but then you're pretty much restricted to playing the game on a flat surface just to play it comfortably. Fortunately, you can always customize the controls to whatever fits your preference, includng the simple use of the face buttons to control the reticle/camera (both of which are controlled by default via the stylus). Using this option certainly takes some getting used to, but once you play around with it a bit, you may find it to be the better way to play the ground segments. The game even allows lefties to play the game by using the Circle Pad Pro, which is a nice touch. Overall, the on-land control scheme is tough at first, but once you get used to it, it gets a lot easier and things begin to feel more natural. The controls take some getting used to Honestly, I could play Kid Icarus: Uprising for hours-on-end. The single-player campaign will only take a dozen hours or so to complete, which is almost a shame, but thanks to an insane amount of replayability, Uprising has plenty of reasons to have you come soaring back for more. One of these reasons is the unique difficulty scale (or "intensity" scale) that you can set before each chapter, which range from 0.0 (Effortless) to 9.0 (Nothing Harder!). The idea is that you wager your own in-game currency (hearts), which is a higher amount depending on the intensity you choose, and you get rewarded if you can survive the chapter. If you can't survive your chosen difficulty, however, you not only lose a number of hearts gathered throughout the level, but you are also forced to lower your intensity in order to continue. And when fighting certain bosses for the first time, this can get a bit frustrating, since learning how to win can sometimes cost you a lot of hearts. There are also certain "Intensity Gates" you will find throughout the chapters. As the name implies, they are gates that you can only open if your intensity is high enough. And as you would expect, some pretty cool things are hidden behind these gates, which mostly include rare weapons. Gambling at its finest. Speaking of weapons, that's another thing that makes coming back to this game worthwhile. The weapons have an immense amount of variety. Seriously, you have everything, from your classic bows to things like clubs, swords, cannons, claws, and...a few things I have a hard time even describing (palms?). And with each weapon class, you're introduced to a plethora of different weapons, which will each come with their own specific stats (like how good of a ranged/melee weapon it is) and buffs (such as making you faster or raising your defense). It's things like these that make you want to experiment a little. And to make the weapon system even more innovative, you can also fuse your weapons together to make other weapons in the Arms Altar. This allows you to take certain stats and buffs from two weapons and put 'em into a completely different one. This fun little mechanic puts a whole new spin on the idea of "mixing and matching." Also, if you don't see a certain weapon you're interested in fusing with, or just to use in general, you can always redeem some of your hearts for weapons to put even more weapons at your disposal. You can also convert weapons into gems, which can then be traded with players via StreetPass for either fusing into your own weapons, selling, or simply claiming the weapon it came from. I don't even know what this thing is, but it looks cool. Not only is this game full of weapons and difficulty levels, but it also provides a vast achievement system, just in case the game wasn't getting you hooked enough. There are a total of 360 achievements (a nod to the Xbox 360 achievement system, perhaps?), and they can be as tough as nails to receive; like beating the last chapter on 9.0 difficulty, or easy as pie; like playing the game's multi-player mode for the first time. The amount of content packed into this little game is truly incredible... Oh, did I not mention the multiplayer mode yet? Silly me. The multiplayer in Kid Icarus: Uprising is, for lack of a better word, fun. You can either duke it out with up to five others in a simple Free-for-All match or team up in a 3-on-3 battle in Light vs. Dark, whether with friends locally or strangers online. The first option is self-explanatory, but the second is a little more interesting. Basically, you start out sharing a certain health bar with your companions, but once that health bar depletes completely, the teammate who was defeated last will transform into Pit (Team Light) or Dark Pit (Team Dark), and the other two will have to protect him while attempting to defeat the other team's angel. And if you've gotten some pretty awesome weapons and powers in your single-player game, don't worry, because they transfer right over to your multiplayer matches for you to use as you see fit. Be forewarned, though, that your team's health bar in Light vs. Dark depletes faster the stronger the weapon. Basically, your double-edged sword can indeed be a double-edged sword. But aside from that, you also have several different options to customize your matches with, including handicaps, item frequency, AI difficulty levels, and time limits. But the multi-player in Uprising certainly isn't perfect. While the single-player game is pretty well-balanced with its simple level-progression, fighting with friends can get a little too helter-skelter at times, which can often cause players to struggle a bit with the controls, especially since it's not really the best idea to play unless you've gotten past the initial hurdle of the game's ground controls. Another thing that gets a little helter-skelter at times is the framerate, which occasionally gets choppy from the stress of all the action going on all at once. After playing multiplayer for a while, it's pretty obvious that single-player is the main draw of the game. Pit and his posse in Light vs. Dark All-in-all, Kid Icarus: Uprising is a fantastic revival to a classic gem, and has a lot going for it as a fantastic game all in itself. Boasting a great storyline, hilarious dialogue, gorgeous graphics and art design, breathtaking music, solid gameplay, and a ton of replayability, this game truly is a terrific experience that shows just what the 3DS can do. However, the game still has its flaws, including initially-awkward controls, chatty characters that can distract you from the action, and a multiplayer mode that is only really there so that the game can have a multiplayer mode. But despite the minor faults this game has, Kid Icarus: Uprising is a game no 3DS owner should be caught dead without. Pros: + Wonderfully-written story with interesting characters + Gorgeous graphics with inspired art direction + A soundtrack that puts many to shame + Fun, solid gameplay + An insane amount of replay value Cons: - Controls take some getting used to - Dialogue can get in the way sometimes - Multiplayer isn't as great as it could be Overall Score: 9 (out of 10) Fantastic A revival to a classic franchise that carries the legacy to new heights in gaming. Once you get past the initial hurdle of the control scheme, the game provides a brilliant experience to immerse yourself in.
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