The final DLC character for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate has been revealed – and it's none other than Sora, from the Kingdom Hearts games from Disney and Square Enix.
There was plenty of speculation and expectation in the run-up to the announcement, with the usual names of Crash Bandicoot, Master Chief, and DoomGuy – even Waluigi – being posited as the next and final Smash Bros DLC character.
It seems that Nintendo preferred to stick to a generally-agreeable character, one that's broadly recognizable with a distinctive look – that giant key as a sword being the main part of it – with a large and passionate fanbase behind it, and supportive gamers likely in both Japan and Western markets.
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It certainly seemed like an emotional moment for Masahiro Sakurai, the game's director, who waxed lyrical about the long development time of the game and its DLC releases – enough to get through many years of school as a child.
But we also got an insight into Sora's moveset, with Sakurai stating that "Sora's controls are relatively straightforward," and that he "excels at airborne fighting" while having a large jump and recovery distance. "He's quite floaty," Sakurai adds, making him easy to push around the stage as a player – and as an enemy, with Sora prone to being knocked away.
We also got a look at new Mii Fighter costumes, including an 'Octoling' wig and 'Judd' hat inspired by Splatoon, and a DoomGuy Gunner outfit, all coming October 18 – even if some fans may be upset not to see DoomGuy taking center stage for the final Smash Bros DLC slot.
A worthy addition to the roster?
Sora is possibly the smartest way to end on Smash Bros DLC – simply because the choice isn't overly divisive. As much as some of us would have loved Master Chief, or a host of other appointments, it likely would have been a disappointment to many others at the same time.
There's certainly something fitting about Sora, given the Kingdom Hearts games are a medley of guesting, out-of-place characters – much like the Smash Bros series he's now stepped into.
Ultimately – pun intended – the Super Smash Bros Ultimate roster is vast enough that a singular choice for DLC, be it the first or last, shouldn't have too many expectations on it. There is enough choice for anyone who enjoys playing the game, from fans of Legend of Zelda and Mario to Metal Gear Solid and Fire Emblem.
We can't help but look ahead, though, to the prospect of another Smash Bros game, given Ultimate feels like the most definitive version of the series Nintendo could make.
If the next title doesn't offer the same characters from the outset, it could face ire, as when the Pokémon Sword and Shield games shipped with a limited Pokédex. You get used to having all the options, and then it's irritating when they're taken away.
For the time being, though, Super Smash Bros Ultimate can rest on its laurels, after a thrilling succession of DLC fighters which – even when we weren't keen on the choices – definitely kept us interested, and catered to a mix of players and fanbases with its steady roster of releases since the game's initial launch in 2018. Now that everyone's joined the fight, we can get back to the all-important business of fighting with all the characters available to us.
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