Everybody Brawls

At Nintendo’s Digital Event that replaced their typical E3 press conference, Reggie Fils-Aime, President and COO of Nintendo of America, talked a lot about the soon-to-be-released Super Smash Bros. game coming out for the Wii U and 3DS.

There were three major announcements released about these games during the event - one is the use of the new Nintendo Toys to Life product called amiibo, one concerning a way to bring your Miis into the arena, and the last is the reveal of a new character, Lady Palutena from the Kid Icarus series.

First the amiibos. These are figures that look a lot like the statues earned while playing Smash Bros., and similar to Skylanders or Disney Infinity, these figures hold onto their own stats and levels so you can bring your customized fighter to a friend's house and play against them. Using the NFC area of the Wii U Gamepad, you tap the amiibo and the game reads all of the character’s stats and imports them into the game. Every time you fight with the amiibo, it gets experience and small stat boosts to its defense and attack numbers. You can even work on training the amiibo to choose specific special abilities so that your version of Mario, Samus or even the Wii Fit Trainer fights differently than your friend’s with the same figure. Nintendo claims that fighting against the amiibo character will be a much more interesting and fun fight than just taking on the computer, and if you want to level your amiibos faster, you can pit them against each other for extra experience.

I can’t imagine having to hold the amiibo to the Gamepad during the entire fight, so I would imagine the game works more like a tap-in/tap-out system where you load up the character, play with it and then re-upload the data back to the figure when you are done playing. If so, this would be similar to how you play with Skylanders on the 3DS.

Nintendo plans on releasing the first wave of amiibo figures alongside the Super Smash Bros. game in October. The toys they’ve shown so far are: Mario, Samus, Link, Wii Fit Trainer, the Villager from Animal Crossing, Pikachu, Donkey Kong, Princess Peach, Yoshi and Kirby.

The other main addition to the series is the inclusion of Miis. These aren’t your typical Miis though, they have been overhauled a bit to make them worthwhile fighters while in the arena. Each Mii Fighter fits into one of three classes: Swordfighter, Brawler and Gunner. Brawlers are all about close combat with fists and feet, while Swordfighters stay calm in the fight and know how to handle their blades. Meanwhile Mii Gunners have arm cannons similar to Samus with a wide variety of projectiles to blast their enemies with. Each fighter can choose four moves from a pool of 12 that is specific to each class. This means that there are a total of 36 different moves to choose from.

The developers explained that they had wanted to bring Miis into Smash Bros. for a long time, but wanted to make sure that they would be something people would actually want to play. This, combined with tons of requests for which characters to add to the game, led to the team deciding to let the players create the characters they want to fight as.

The Digital Event wrapped up with Fils-Aime revealing a new fighter, the goddess of light from the Kid Icarus series. The video had her touting her many moves which include Rocket Jump, Super Speed, Celestial Fireworks, Black Hole, Mega Laser and Dark Pit. All of the moves pulled off in the short display of the character abilities were impressive and are sure to add some interesting fights into the mix.

Look for Super Smash Bros. and amiibos later this year, but keep watching Game Vortex’s E3 coverage for a more in depth look at amiibos and our impressions of Nintendo’s angle on the Toys to Life genre. In the meantime, check out the trailer below for a sneak peek.