In case you haven’t heard, Nintendo blessed the land with a smattering of early-access demo codes for the upcoming Super Smash Bros. 3DS for those who were Platinum-level Club Nintendo members in the last year and had opted in to receive emails from the Japanese game company through their Club account. Of course, I jumped on getting my hands on a code as quickly as possible, and I’ve spent a couple of hours tearing into the demo on my 2DS. I thought I’d share some preliminary thoughts and impressions here for those who haven’t been fortunate enough to receive one of the codes and have to wait until next week, when the demo goes public.
First and foremost – and I’ve seen this sentiment across my Twitter and Facebook feeds – Super Smash Bros. actually plays really, really well on the handheld system. While I envy the 3DS XL owners and their larger screens in times like this, even on the more limited 2DS (which I find much more comfortable for long gaming sessions) it’s really smooth and clear. The graphics are, as anyone following along with screenshots and trailers knows, simply gorgeous, and the smaller screen doesn’t seem to limit your ability to see what’s going on, though I could see a bit of difficulty with larger stages and full four-player brawls. It’s clean, crisp, and smooth running all the way through, and even in the madness that always erupts in Smash titles it’s easy to keep track of the action.
In the demo, five of the characters from Super Smash Bros. roster are available, with three returning fighters in Mario, Link, and Pikachu, plus two of this round’s new blood, Mega Man and Villager. I hit a couple of rounds with each of the options to get a good feel for the game, and I wasn’t disappointed with any of them. The returning roster members fight much as they did in 2008’s Brawl for the Wii, so I don’t expect much new or different from the others returning from the prior game, but there’s still a few tweaks here and there. I used Mega Man the most, as he’s my most anticipated new addition anyway, and a fair amount of time with Villager to try and feel out what the emerging warriors bring to the table. I’m happy to report that it’s quite a lot, actually, and they really seem to fit right in as if they’ve been there the whole time.