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Sakurai Wants Super Smash Bros To Appeal To Everyone

Super Smash Bros creator Masahiro Sakuraihas explained to EDGE magazine that he ultimately wants to make Super Smash Bros 3DS and Wii U to appeal to as many gamers as possible while retaining the core nature of the game. Here’s what he had to say.

“I think the popularity of Melee rested fundamentally on the game’s speed. The dazzling exchange of skills was the game’s most exhilarating aspect and the rough edges in terms of the game’s balance went mostly unnoticed. Even though the dynamic range of the characters was limited, the game somehow made its mark, even with hardcore fans of the genre.”

“Melee’s controls were, however, quite complicated and very tiring if the player really got into it in a serious way. This made the game less accessible for novice players and it basically ended up becoming a Smash Bros. game for hardcore fighting fans. I personally regret that, because I originally intended the Smash Bros. series to be for players who couldn’t handle such highly skilled games.”

“If tournament popularity was the most important consideration, then I think we would create a Smash Bros. game that included a multitude of fast moves with complicated controls. However, I believe this is actually the greatest shortcoming of fighting games at present, and that is the reason why I don’t do it.”

“Games aimed at casual users, such as Wii Sports and Wii Fit, reinvigorated the market and their success lay behind Wii’s popularity, [so] we had to make sure that Brawl would also be fun for first-time players. We also had to make sure that everyone could use the controls, such as holding the Wii Remote sideways. As a result of these considerations, overall Brawl is rather tame game; this had its advantages, but it also took away some of the excitement.”

“While there’s a lot of enthusiasm for tournaments on the one hand, there are also users who just give up on these sorts of games because they can’t handle the complexity and speed. While other fighting games continue to work on honing this tournament aspect, I think that we need to move in a direction where there is more of a focus on inexperienced gamers. Companies that release products that target a very vocal, visible group of gamers tend to receive good reactions and they may feel good about it, but I think that we have to pay special attention to the less vocal, not so visible group of players, or else games will just fade away.”

“There are so many other games out there which are geared to tournaments. It is important for us, however, to maintain the game’s status as a kind of ‘rough’ party game in which anyone can play without feeling too much pressure over winning or losing. We therefore want to keep a nice balance in which a wide variety of events can occur in the game, some of them quite outrageous. With this, Smash Bros. isn’t just a fighting game, it is an opponent-based action game.”

“The most important thing is that the game have breadth and depth, since we would like them to be popular with both novices and hardcore gamers. We think that people who aren’t so good at turning the tables and coming back from behind can still get enjoyment out of the [new] game, even if they turn off items and Smash Balls.”

“Although the pace of the game had to be lowered compared to Melee in order to achieve this balance, we have managed to keep the dynamism because we didn’t have to gear towards novice players like we did with Brawl. In fact, we recreated all characters almost from scratch. Also, I feel on a personal level that this game is more interesting than the three previous games in the series.”

85 thoughts on “Sakurai Wants Super Smash Bros To Appeal To Everyone”

    1. Shit load of news today. Just scrolled down to the bottom of the page and there was still more stuff to load. In response to this comment, yea they do that a lot. I think they’re just trying to say stuff to sell the game and then they forget what they said in the last interview. Hopefully this is all just talk because I filthy casual scum.

    2. He was kind of mentioning the plus sides and down sides of the series. You gotta flip flop’ to view the game from all angles.
      Melee was wicked fast+ a solid competitive experience, but did not cater to casuals. Brawl was varied and fun, but not as balanced and hardcore as Melee.

      1. SherlockWillFightBilbo

        “You gotta flip flop’ to view the game from all angles.” You nailed it.

        I trust in Sakurai with this. He’s made three Smash Bros. already and knows what he needs to do for this one. It’ll be fine.

      2. Sakurai: “The dazzling exchange of skills was the game’s most exhilarating aspect and the rough edges in terms of the game’s balance went mostly unnoticed”

        You: “Brawl was varied and fun, but not as balanced”

        You sort of proved his point.

    3. I never understood how making a game like smash bros slower and less combo based helped casual players get into it. if they are casual players, they won’t know what L-canceling and other shit like that are, they won’t play with pro players. people in brawl can still be marginally better than novice players. people who just came into smash bros and wanted to get competitive can go learn those special moves, nothing is stopping them and those casuals players are just that, casual players, they don’t care for more advanced techniques, they don’t even know they exist, so why take them out. i never got nintendo and their way of thinking with shit like this, parental controls that they never actually use, lack of online in their games, lack of messaging system, catering to casuals that moved on and they said “we’re gonna cater to core players now” and they do this shit again, lack of features in games like mario bros u or 3d world like level editing, realistic looking zelda, metroid, starfox, f-zero, 3rd party, stronger console…. all those problems that are SO easy to solve and would bring them back their core fans.

      come on fanboys, disagree, miyamoto needed 2 years after wii u’s launch to see this, and he’s a genius, i’ve been saying this for the past year and you’ve all been like “mario bros u doesn’t need level editor” until nintendo came and said “mario maker” and everybody here was like “OOOO, NINTENDO UR GENIUS”

      sometimes, you just gotta see who the real genius is. and it’s me

      1. I think the whole idea of what Sakurai was getting at went over your head. The only way casual players might be exposed to something like smash brothers, is someone who plays a lot. Someone who plays a lot usually can figure out how to play the game pretty well on their own. They invite someone over who has never, or doesn’t usually ever, play smash bros. (I actually do this all the time!). If I learned how to L-cancel and wavedash (I usually only play Brawl, so I never learned how to do those tricks, not that I’d want to. They look like you’re breaking the game, no offense.) Then they wouldn’t stand a CHANCE and they wouldn’t have any fun and they’d be completely turned off because they’d think “Boy, this game is confusing. It’s just like all those other fighting games!”. There have been numerous occurrences where this has happened to people I’ve invited over, they think they need to know specific button inputs and combos in order to be any good, when really the game doesn’t require a complicated button input!

        Smash bros. doesn’t give you a counter meter, a specific button combo to lay down a powerful move, or a life bar. It has simple controls and doesn’t reward you, in-game, for unleashing those simple button presses.

        I think what Sakurai is saying with Smash 4 is that, if you’re new to the game, you’ll be able to learn how to play very fast and even though you might lose because someone has been playing longer and has more skill than you, you’ll still be enjoying yourself because you’ll feel like you’re learning and that maybe in the next round you WILL win. The same goes for pros! You can only keep getting better the more you play the game!

        It’s all about inclusive rather than exclusive. I think forcing someone who wants to be good at the game to learn L-canceling and Wavedashing really alienates those who just want to play it a little. They can lose and still have fun.

        And if you think your ideas are great, then do something about it! Don’t wait for the idea to happen and say, “I could’ve thought of that…”

        1. you can still enjoy melee, it is the same shit, just better for hardcore players, casuals don’t lose shit

            1. actually they do, but i explained how in the original post, if you can’t read between the lines, you’re a fucking handich

    4. He wants to appeal to his fans directly more beyond anything else… It’s the KIRBY GAME! With Kid Icarus! Special guests from franchises of Super Mario, The Legend of Zelda, Pokémon, and other Nintendo series. Also includes third party representatives like Sonic the Hedgehog, Mega Man, and Pac-Man! I get you make Kirby and Smash Bros. but I’m so sick of how Kirby and other Kirby characters or Kid Icarus characters are the main spotlight in some way, just they try to make it seem like Mario is. Y’know? With Mario being the mascot and all… Kirby is Sakurai’s mascot, so Smash isn’t even a Nintendo game that caters to all series, it’s Kirby first then the rest of Nintendo’s series. Like how everyone started to believe that Smash was a Mario game with other Nintendo characters because it focused more on Mario, since again… y’know? Mascot and all. Got all those Mario characters! Mario, Dr. Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, Bowser, Wario, Yoshi, Donkey Kong, Diddy Kong, Rosalina, and now apparently Bowser Jr.? But there’s too much to hint at Sakurai being biased about his franchises over the others he doesn’t create. Just take a look at the drawing of the white board for Smash 4, daily updates, Kirby’s overall main focus and use in Subspace Emissary. Just take a look… but what can you do? Sakurai the narcissist that he is, can it be that easy for anyone else to not do the same thing? Who knows… well rambling on! I’ll let your minds ponder on and let you see for yourselves! :D

        1. And letting him continue this constant work, he gets his characters hated on because they’re annoying to see every second. It’s like hearing people get annoyed with Cloud and Sephiroth for everything or being created in customizing games. They’re from a popular game but when over used, going to get some hate, it gets annoying to see them over and over again. Instead of shedding some light on some other characters. So with that said… Sakurai should go to some other series, one that’s not doing so well and make a game for that. Give it some love, if he did it for Kid Icarus he can do it for something else next. Not like we need “three” clones as you say… Not looking at you Toon Link or Ganondorf, I’m talking about Dr. Mario, Dark Pit, and Lucina. Since you three are bundled together and get called the clones. Which aren’t the only ones but hey… thanks to Sakurai, the narcissist, we get Dark Pit. Do we need two Pit’s? No! Kid Icarus is now over represented. :D We have Palutena, we don’t need Dark Pit sucking Sakurai’s dick right beside her though they have to wait after Meta Knight, Pit, and Dedede. Kirby gets it every night and day, so it is Smash Kirby. I do enjoy beating the shit out of Kirby’s. :D The only plus I can say about the over represented Kirby bullshit.

    5. Whatever side of the smash spectrum this game falls on whether it be more like brawl or more like melee It’s gonna be awesome! I actually think the game will feel more like melee. Just based on the videos I’ve seen.

    1. To be fair Metroid is a pretty hardcore series. And Ridley is the only real memorable character, other than Samus [obviously]. And the game os really lacking villains. Plus, Ridley could have potentially awesome moves. (But, man, if it weren’t for his size…)

      But, still, there are better reps than Ridley. Ice Climbers, Ness, Wario, Mewtwo, Ganon, Chibi Robo, and Duck Hunt Dog all deserve the spot more than him.

      1. SherlockWillFightBilbo

        I’m pretty sure Ridley is going to be a boss, as well as Dark Pit and Metal Face. Mewtwo might as well.

    2. Having Ridley in wouldn’t be a bad thing. Just shrink him & turn his flight into gliding only, like they did with Meta Knight, to balance the character out. Hell! Ridley could be Lil Mac’s opposite: as Lil Mac is stronger when on the ground, Ridley can be stronger while in mid-air. I don’t know why so many people are so adamant about Ridley, a 1st party character who is just as big as the Metroids & Samus herself, not being playable in Super Smash Bros. Don’t like the character, don’t use him in the game. Don’t like the idea of playing with people that do use Ridley: leave any online matches that have people using the character.

    1. Why? He is right….I’m Pretty good at smash and prefer the items….I have played serious with ppl who like to turn of the items…I normally win but I’ve lost my fair share too, but for some reason I smoke them with items on…and I understand there is a randomness to it, but these same ppl who play me hard without items don’t at nearly as well with them on…I don’t understand it, but I think the “hardcore” players of this game are moany and whiney, I’m prob just as “hardcore” as them…without that weird attitude

      1. If you were an auto maker and decided to make a luxury car with a price tag of around $200 000. It’s safe to assume that the intended target are of wealthy means.

        Say you want to sell the same car to people with limited means?

        You would have to remove the very things that make it luxary. Only a shell would remain.

        Im uncertain how much this “principle” will effect a game like Smash Bros but they seem to be trying to take this approach with every game they are intending to create. It could result in Nintendo turning into a Fisher Price or Leap Frog

        1. Actually, I disagree. This is a smart business move for most people. If there was anything that we learned was that Nintendo will always have “tricks” up their sleeves. We always question them, we see them fall, and yet we see them on top the next time we turn around. In fact, its the other way around.

          1. Agreed. When ps4 and xbox one launched I didn’t have to worry if I made the right choice choosing Nintendo over the ever fading halo franchise. I new regardless of all the bells and whistles sony and Microsoft could come up with for their consoles, As good as they could be they would never have the one thing that Nintendo always has. The best games! so stop your worrying, this next smash bros will be the best one yet!

        2. No dude, I think not alienating players is probably a better business decision. If pros and casual players can have fun with it, then it’s great. That’s terrific. I think comparing it to a car is a little… well, it’s a bad comparison. You’re making it sound like L-canceling, wave dashing, and extreme speed are a “luxury”, when really it’s just keeping new players from enjoying themselves.

    1. With Bowser Jr. presumably in, I hear he has 7 other costume swaps between all the Koopalings! Lemmy, Iggy, Larry, Wendy, Luwig, Morton, and…

      ROY. Roy Koopa! So he might be in dude! That’s the Roy you wanted, right?

    1. It will probably be an option, just like it was in SSBB. lt’s very unlike Sakurai to cut in perfectly fine options :)

      1. perfect, I am kinda worried tho since this option was almost hidden in Brawl, especially when navigating through roster, when I loaded the game for the 1st time I expected te roster menu with pointer, yet it is absent. Same with Last Story, I expected controls like in RE4, yet they were completely absent

  1. I kind of have to agree with Sakurai on this one. It’s important to reach out to new audiences and keep that party game aspect while at the same time reaching out to familiar fans. If we make the game to extreme newcomers will quit on it, and Smash Bros. will be isolated from newer audience members over time. Brawl was a great testament on how it brought in new and old Smashers alike. I know jocks, total ass holes, and a ton of nerdy kids, and in between, who played/started with Smash Bros Brawl and loved it. Being a party game is part of the way it leaves a happy memory in our hearts. Smash Bros 64 is one of the only happy memories I had with my brother as kids (we used to fight constantly) and I remember team battles against neighbors and friends and we used to cooperate as a team, you share an experience you’ll never forget. Yeah tournaments are important too, but it doesn’t leave the same mark that those house parties do where you pop in the Smash disc and have tournaments with a ton of people.

  2. Ok i can acknowledge that melee is very skilled game, and offers challenge in the competitive area…But lets move on, its not bad to look back at melee, and enjoy it still, but stop putting it on a golden stand. Brawl offered more content the melee, a better roster(though Its not my favorite 4 is my fav, Shulk, little mac, ect.). I mean nintendo has been trying to please that crowd, but they still bitch about no l canceling, or wave dashing( though we still don’t know what 4 will have that will be discovered). I like smash having a competitive scene, but the melee fanbase is full of bitchy assholes(not all). Just have fun with the game.

    1. According to the leak he is, and another leak I think said the Koopa Kids are his alternate costumes. I’m ok if that’s true, cause they are Bowser’s true children despite the fact Shigsy tried to change Nintendo history ten years later. They are far more deserving than jr.

  3. it now the time to put bowser jr in the game make him playful i don t want shulk i want bowser jr in i ok with shulk but stell i want bowser jr

  4. Why not do what Capcom does and give us both option ala Normal and Turbo options?

    As melee fanatics what we really miss is the speed, (WD and Canceling would be nice but the biggest gripe is Speed) why not give us those option? Surely its not too much to ask specially since a company like Crapcom can do it.

    1. SherlockWillFightBilbo

      There could be a mode in Special Melee that adds the speed. Not Bunny-Ears speed, but SSBM speed.

      Anyway, the game will be better than Brawl and almost as competitive as Melee. It won’t be as “casual” as people fear.

    2. Was just about to post ^this.
      Sakurai! You crammed a bunch of stuff (some of it unnecessary) into Brawl. Don’t tell me you can’t do a normal mode + a hyper or expert mode. Increasing speed to 1.5 in Brawl’s too fast, but maybe 1.2. There’s no reason this can’t be done.

  5. here are my top 10 most wanted characters in super smash bros for wii u and 3ds
    10 bowser jr
    9 bowser jr
    8 bowser jr
    7 bowser jr
    6 bowser jr
    5 bowser jr
    4 bowser jr
    3 bowser jr
    2 bowser jr
    1 bowser jr
    please sakural get bowser jr in

  6. Data from Star Trek (who finds Nintendo games intriguingly fun)

    “Rough party game”. Well said Sakurai. Now I can describe the super smash bros. series to non-gamers in a way that makes sense! :D

  7. As long as ‘appeal to everyone’ doesn’t somehow mean he’s putting tripping back in, it makes sense to me.

  8. everyone happy thay shulk is in the game as playful good good I NOT
    i want bowser jr in the game now af he not i going to kill mysalf af he not in thay

    1. Dude! Quit it already! I want Ridley in as playable but you don’t see me spamming Ridley 4 Smash like you are with Bowser Jr.

  9. How can he say that Melee didn’t cater to casual players? It is the most popular Smash game in the series across all audiences.

        1. No cause he’s just a cheap uninspired mini clone of bowser thrown in for the younger more G-rated kids that started playing on Gamecube (Super Mario Sunshine). If you were an old enough Nintendo fan you’d know the truth of the true kids. You probably never even watched the cartoons.

            1. Yea he is a clone fuck face. Koopalings are far better. He came along in Sunshine and was the new bowser kid according to nintendo, but fans weren’t having it and that’s why the Koopalings came back in the New Super Mario series. He’s just a mini stupid looking bowser. Sorry little kid, but he sucks. And great response 17 days later.

  10. Pingback: [Wii U/3DS] Super Smash Bros. Wii U & 3DS (Coming 2014, Website and Miiverse Community up) - Page 84

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