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Sakurai Dispels Character Nepotism Rumors In Super Smash Bros.

Just check any Super Smash Bros. balancing discussion in any gaming forum and you will find rumors that Smash Bros. producer, Masahiro Sakurai, gives his own characters from other games (i.e. Kirby, Pit, Meta Knight) preferential treatment by ways of stat boosts. Writing with the Weekly Famitsu, Sakurai faced these allegations with simple reasoning:

First off, what merit is there for me to play favorites with characters I worked on?” he wrote. Sakurai went on to note that Pit from Kid Icarus is in fact one of the characters he has trouble using in the game. “To bring up an example, two characters I have trouble with and can’t use very well are Pit and Palutena. Therefore, for me, I feel that ‘Pit and Palutena are weaker than the average character.’ If I were to adjust them to fit myself, they would become even stronger – but as you may notice, I haven’t.

Sakurai went on to discuss how someone on his team is given the task of checking fighter balance, and while things are never perfect, fun over balance is the main goal.

38 thoughts on “Sakurai Dispels Character Nepotism Rumors In Super Smash Bros.”

      1. I don’t think that’s the issue. People have problems with those characters making it into the roster in the first place (I’m talking mainly about Kid Icarus, I feel Kirby is perfectly represented).

        1. It’s more like… why are these characters so overpowered? Why do they receive a much greater focus over many others like appearing in new character illustration art or introductory trailer plus let’s not forget that Kirby was the main character of the Subspace Emissary! We all know Palutena got in since Sakurai made Uprising and she gives him frequent lap dances with her twerking. :)

          1. Eh, the characters being featured in newcomer trailers and artwork doesn’t bother me as much, since they don’t affect the game itself in any meaningful way. You’re right about Kirby on SSE, though, he was as prominent as Mario, if not more.

        2. Pit and trouble using do not go together in the same sentence. If anything he’s in there with Mario and little Mac as one of the easiest characters to play.

          1. pink0crystal0midbus

            I find Pit to be weak. Dark Pit is much better. He is fast so he can take out slower characters with ease and his dodge game is nice. I don’t find either of them to be any particularly menacing threat, however.

            A good Palutena on the other hand…. can be mighty unstoppable. I have faced two excellent Palutena players so far while playing many, many battles online and they were killer. Couldn’t beat them once no matter what character or strategy I used. If you can read you opponents moves while using Palutena, then it’s game over for your opponent. Palutena is a beast when it comes to punishing.

            1. Any character is unstoppable when played by a better player. Your story reveals that you need more practice. Everyone has a “I went against an unstoppable ______, so OP” story.

              If you aren’t convinced, try naming one major tournament where a Palutena was even a finalist.

              1. Little Mac is easy to control? If you say so. You do realize that there’s more to a match than just dodge rolls and smash attacks, right?

            2. hahaha. That’s a really poor excuse, Sakurai. “I’m not good with them, so they’re definitely not overpowered!”
              Metaknight in Brawl says otherwise.

            3. WTF? Who seriously thinks any of those characters are recieving special treatment when none of them are even past mid tier and some like Meta Knight have even gotten WORSE from their past ssb iteration? This sounds more like news sites banking on a conspiracy theory made up by two people in their basement who are bad at this game.

            4. I really doubt he gives anyone special treatment, if anything this rumor was probably made up by angry people who didn’t get their favorite characters.

              1. Kaptain Krusha K. Roolenstein

                He does give special treatment to his games. The fact that Kid Icarus has more reps than Donkey Kong, Star Fox, and Fzero when they were way relevant before kid icarus latest game, is blasphemy.

                1. FINALLY someone says it!

                  There are also more KI Uprising enemies in Smash run than Mario, DK, and Zelda enemies COMBINED, and those are all bigger franchises than Kid Icarus.

                  Also, if you paid attention to Subspace Emissary in Brawl, the Kirby characters were the stars of the show, and that annoys me.

                  1. The KI Uprising enemies were assets from that recent game that were easily transferred over to smash 3ds to save development time. This helped production of the game quicker while giving a huge variety of resources to work with.

                2. Dark Pit and Palutena haven’t really earned their spot on the roster. They skipped ahead to the front of the line because Sakurai worked on Uprising. Characters like King K. Rool, Samurai Goro and Dark Samus should have been given a spot first.

                  1. Samurai Goro? Lol gtfo.

                    While you’re at it, bitch that Wii fit and duck hunt didn’t deserve a spot. Or that Dr. Mario is a clone. His game, he can do whatever the fuck he wants.

                    1. If not, Goro, some other F-Zero representative. Yes, it is his game, but that doesn’t make it right that he left out some great candidates in favor of dark pit and palutena.

                      1. I wouldn’t be opposed to this being his last Smash game. As long as the gameplay stays intact for the next Smash titles remains the same, I’m okay. Classic mode, stage builder, board game, and lack of subspace emissary or any adventure mode were very disappointing. Hopefuly these problems will be addressed on Smash NX.

                    2. Pingback: Sakurai desmiente la excesiva atención que reciben algunos de los personajes en ‘Super Smash Bros’ - TodoJuegos

                    3. >People who think Isaac (don’t even know who this fucker is), Roy (stupid clone), Dark Samus, Takamaru (no one knew who this fucker was before being announced as an assist trophy LOL) and Wolf (stupid clone) are more relevant than lady Palutena

                      Daddy Sakurai, keep showing those bitches who’s the boss

                    4. Palutena was an incredibly fun character in kid Icarus uprising and has an incredibly original move set in smash. She’s a great addition.

                      Dark Pit didn’t replace any other potential fighters. Him, Dr. Mario, and Lucina were added last minute because they could set quickly program their move sets because they’re clones. If they were’nt in the game, we wouldn’t get any other characters to replace them; we would have gotten nothing. So stop complaining.

                      My only complaint is that Dark Pit’s moveset is too similar to Pit’s. At least Doc and Lucina have obvious differences that change up their gameplay styles a bit — Dark Pit and Pit play EXACTLY the same way. They’re differences are too minuscule for my tastes, I wish they made dark pit more of a powerhouse or changed his special moves around a bit.

                      1. I don’t think he has nepotism towards characters he’s created/worked with… When it comes to Sm4sh’s balance. When it comes to representation and relevance, however, yeah, his bias cannot be hidden.


                        1. Brawl’s Subspace Emissary. Kirby is introduced early on, saves SEVERAL characters from trophi-zation, inadvertently saves himself by swallowing one of Dedede’s badges, single-handedly defeats an entire platoon of Subspace goons a group of characters (including Mario, Link, and others) had trouble fighting as a team, and it’s his Dragoon that deals the final blow to a massive Subspace Cannon. Meta Knight’s ship, the Halberd, is seized and used as a mobile base for the army for much of the story, easily beats the Great Fox in a dogfight, and, in the OPENING CINEMATIC FOR THE GAME, is the last thing we see before the game goes to the title screen. King Dedede is shown to have had a master plan to combat Tabuu the whole time; in a planned cutscene that was never made, it was going to be shown HOW Dedede learned of Tabuu’s plot (it was cut because Sakurai thought it couldn’t be done without dialogue and would have confused viewers). He’s also the one responsible for turning two of the three fighters originally on the Subspace side (Bowser AND Wario) against their former allies.

                        2. Number of characters. Sorry, I’m A Boss Ass Bitch, but I’m about to argue why Medusa shouldn’t be one of the earlier DLC characters. Before KI Uprising, Smash only had one Kid Icarus fighter: Pit. Afterwards, the series got Palutena and Dark Pit as Smash fighters, after only three games in the KI series as a whole. Meanwhile, series with bigger followings and more games like Donkey Kong, Metroid, and F-Zero have never had more than two fighters from their series. Characters like K. Rool, Krystal, Black Shadow, and Ridley have been massively more popular than Palutena, characters Sakurai CHOOSES to ignore despite what the community has been asking for for YEARS.

                        3. Smash Run. Smash Run has more Kid Icarus enemies than Mario, Donkey Kong, and Zelda enemies COMBINED. ‘Nuff said there. Some series like Star Fox and Fire Emblem don’t have ANY enemies at all.

                        4. Palutena’s Guidance. I know there was a similar mechanic for Snake in Brawl, but these ones, for the most part, just weren’t as fun. It didn’t help that these were probably added in just because Uprising was a thing. And DON’T even get me started on Robin’s convo because the characters needlessly bash Chrom (it’s clear the director has disdain for the character).

                        1. Ridley 4 Smash DLC!

                          “He mentioned Ridley for playable character! KILL HIM!!! RIDLEY IS TOO BIG!!! GRRRRRRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!! *head blows up*” I think people keep getting Ridley mixed up with this guy!

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