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A Super Smash Bros. Diary

By Staff | Mar 25, 2008

I got “Super Smash Bros. Brawl” the day it came out. I had a copy reserved so I could make sure my little brother at least got one if they were sold out. As it turns out, we both got copies. So here is a brief diary of my first week with the latest Super Smash Bros installment.

Day One: As I don’t have time to actually turn it on until late, I have time to read the instruction manual and catch up on what’s new. New characters, new moves, new ways to play, etc. Right before bed I try it out. I use Diddy Kong, who is pretty fun, and use the Wiimote-only control scheme. Not big on that scheme, too hard to jump (up on directional pad only). But I beat classic mode rather easily, maybe a little too easily. I unlock Marth with the victory, a favorite from Melee. I also hit a 1,100-foot home run with Bowser. D1 rating — B-. Nice new characters, but nothing new otherwise.

Day Two: Get to put in another hour. Start using Pit (Kid Icarus), Olimar (Pikmon) and MetaKnight (Kirby). OK, now it’s getting good. Each character is more original and fun. Go the distance in classic mode with the Knight. Control scheme with nunchuck added much better. Beat a few event matches and try the new super attacks. All great fun. Start the second game mode as well, ‘The Subspace Emissary.” A nice addition, more involved than classic with more variety of play. D2 rating — A. Now it’s getting good.

Day Three: Stadium very similar to last time. Home run, target challenge and multi-man melee are all essentially the same as last time. Smack a 1,200-foot homer with Wario. I’ve yet to unlock anyone new. Time to do some research. There are 14 characters to unlock. I am eager to get Solid Snake and Sonic. D3 rating—B+. Are the new tweaks significant enough?

 Day Four: Tried new control scheme with classic controller, which has proven to be the best yet. I am several hours into “The Subspace Emissary” and it’s only getting better. Really giving me a feel for all the characters, too. Starting to get a little antsy though as I’ve still yet to unlock anyone else. D4 rating—A-. I want to stop writing this and play more.

Day Five: OK, finally got some characters unlocked. Captain Falcon and Falco. (Both more fun to use ironically than to actually use.) But I enjoyed the challenge and found I still have my touch from Melee. About one-third of the way through SSE. Still enjoying it. Beat some of the events too. Wow, I am hooked. D5 rating — A+. Why do I have to work? I want to go home.

Day Six: All of a sudden I started unlocking characters and they just kept coming. Snake, R.O.B. (a robot incarnation of the original NES) and some pokemon I’ve never heard of. The game is really starting to show some variety of characters, especially how they play. SSE is still keeping me coming back for more, and partly because I’ve started to unlock characters from it. D6 rating — A. I still have a reason to go on.

Day Seven: I continue marching ahead with SSE and am still in love with it. I’ve been going a week and am only halfway through. Tried playing online against my brother, it was essentially flawless. Played just like we were side-by-side. The programmers also wisely filled the time it takes to connect and start each match with a few seconds to re-familiarize yourself with your chosen character by wailing on the sandbag. D7 rating — A. Wii flexes online ability … just what it needs.

Overall, it was definitely a great game and different enough from the last one to be worth purchasing. The new characters add great dimension and the new levels and extras are excellent. The only real flaw is that I’m no longer in college and don’t play as much video games.

Contact Brad at btennant@graffitiwv.com