Yesterday, Platinum Club Nintendo members were fortunate enough to receive a code for an early demo of the upcoming Super Smash Bros for Nintendo 3DS. They also got four other codes to share with their friends, and I was fortunate enough to be one of them. So, I can now bring you an early preview for the series’ handheld debut.
First thing that needs to be talked about is what is available. You can only play a basic 2 minute match; you get a point when you KO someone, you lose a point when you get KO’ed and whoever has the most points by the end wins. You do have the option to play with anyone else who has the demo but it’s wireless only; no online. You have access to five characters; Mario, Link, Pikachu, Villager and Mega Man, and only one stage, Battlefield. At the stage select screen, you can choose to change it to its Omega form; making it just a single platform and no items.
Playing what has always been a home console game (and using a controller other than a GameCube one) meant that my first few matches were a little awkward; accidentally jumping when I didn’t mean to or finding myself standing still punching at thin-air. Fortunately, practice does make perfect; besides, the final game will have customisation so you can change which buttons do what.
I have to say I was surprised by how smooth the framerate is. Even with the 3D on maximum, with four characters and items on, it didn’t drop once, which benefits a much faster game. People who didn’t like how slow Brawl felt will certainly be pleased with the much quicker pace. That being said, Battlefield is a very sedate stage with not a lot happening, so who knows what it’ll be like on the more crazier stages.
As for the characters, Mario, Link and Pikachu all feel how they did before so taking control of them was no problem, but what about the newcomers?
Villager came very naturally to me; he/she has a very unique moveset that’s hard to predict and a particularly good air game. His/her Smash attacks are really close range though but deal quite a bit of damage (his/her Down Smash able to hit opponents behind him/her and trap them in the ground). Overall, I’d say he/she is a good character to get to grips with, but maybe hold off if you’re still new.
Mega Man on the other hand was a bit harder for me to get to grips with. His basic attack is a projectile which still throws me off a bit, but he was very fun to use due to his wide range of abilities that have been lifted from his own games. He also has one of the best Final Smashes in the game, summoning four other incarnations of Mega Man to blast away his opponents. I’d say he was one of the more tricky characters to learn, and hopefully, he’ll be deadly in the hands of a master.
Even with this small taste of things to come, I’m confident that this iteration of Smash Bros will be just as fun (if not more fun) than its predecessors despite its jump to a smaller screen. There’s still a wealth of modes and goodies in the full game that will transform this delicious morsel into the five-star gourmet meal it really is.
The demo will become available Friday September 19th, and the full game will be released on October 3rd.