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Sakurai shares development details on Super Smash Bros

Posted on October 20, 2022 by in General Nintendo, News

Following his previous videos detailing development on games in the Kirby series, Masahiro Sakurai has released a new video on his channel providing a closer look at Super Smash Bros’ development.

Sakurai mentions that after Kirby Super Star’s launch was wrapped up, he moved onto independent 3D study, and proposed two games for the Nintendo 64: an RC robot adventure game where you would hack into security cameras to progress, and a four player free-for-all fighting game called Dragon King, which would go on to become Super Smash Bros. Sakurai also shares prototype footage of Dragon King in the video.

Sakurai states that both of these prototypes were received well by Nintendo, but there was nobody available to make anything beyond the prototypes due to everyone working on their own projects. A lot of these titles ultimately fell through, and Nintendo needed a game that could be released quickly: as Sakurai felt that the RC Adventure game would require at least 2 years to complete, it was decided that Dragon King would be developed.

Sakurai also talks about the original thinking that went into Smash Bros. design, noting that fighting games typically revolve around “how you string together attacks after the first hit, rendering your opponent’s skill level irrelevant” which led to the accumulated damage system the Smash Bros. series is known for. The simplicity of the controls was as a result of the increasing complexity of the combo inputs that dominated fighting games of the time.

On the incorporation of Nintendo characters into the game, Sakurai mentions that this is something that was negotiated for later in development: “I didn’t want to throw players into a roster full of characters nobody had ever seen and knew we had to come up to an objective solution to this problem.”

Sakurai shares additional insights and tidbits into the creation of Smash Bros, and how it was designed in comparison to other fighting games of the time, in the video, which you can watch in full below:

Super Smash Bros. was originally released on the Nintendo 64 in 1999. The latest instalment in the franchise, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, was released on Switch in 2018.

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