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The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Super Smash Bros.

A debate that rages on among fanboys and the tragically nerdy is “(Insert video game character) can beat up (insert video game character).” Fortunately, Nintendo has provided an opportunity to settle this argument.
The latest installment of the Super Smash Brothers series was highly anticipated by Wii owners and Nintendo fanatics alike. Not only is it a flagship title for the ground-breaking and experimental console, but it’s the union of every iconic character that has graced Nintendo consoles since the legendary 8-bit NES.
The concept of Super Smash Brothers Brawl is a fighting game that includes the many protagonists from Nintendo-developed games. The range of fighters extends from the famed icons of Nintendo – the universally known Mario and the androgynous Link – to some of the most obscure characters that come from Japanese import games or forgotten titles from yesteryear. Joining the roster for this installment is Solid Snake, from Konami’s Metal Gear Solid franchise, and Sega’s Sonic the Hedgehog, the once-rival of Super Mario. With up to four players allowed to fight each match, the battles can be a chaotic jumble of violence and dazzling effects.
The game lives up to the huge expectations that were thrust upon it. Super Smash Brothers is a superb example of what a video game should be. The game mechanics are finely tuned for the beginner and the expert alike. The core concept of the game is to force the other player to fall off the stage, rather than the traditional fighting game life-bar. The fighters become more lightweight and easier to knock around the more they have been beaten up. Although this may sound like an overly simple fighting system, there are many nuances to this bare setup that make the game easy to pick up, yet difficult to master.
The graphics, sound, control and general presentation are all top notch. Although the graphics do not meet the photo-realistic standards that have been set by the Xbox 360 or Playstation 3, they are still excellently crafted. The game runs on a smooth and seamless frame-rate that never falters when action is at its peak. Beyond great technical graphics, the game is finely designed with that trademark Nintendo aesthetic – in the fight arenas and even the menus. The sound quality of Smash Brothers is on par with its graphics. All the well-known sound bites that come along with each character are remarkably reproduced, whether it is the crashing of a barrel thrown by Donkey Kong or the syrupy chirps uttered by Pikachu.
The control is finely articulated. The game allows for the use of the Wii remote or the classic gamepad controller, the latter being the better choice for this game. Although the Wii remote is adequate for Brawl, the standard controller is much better suited for the complex button presses required for each character’s special combo moves.
The lifespan and replay value of the game will prove to be lasting. Brawl contains an almost pornographic amount of unlockable content, including new characters, settings and game types. In addition, the game can be played online with other players, a feature that is a must for any modern video game.
Not enough good things can be said about Super Smash Brothers Brawl. It is a fine example of what a video game should be and carries on the torch of Nintendo’s excellence that started with the games the fighters hailed from.

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