Massive Gameplay-Related SSB:Brawl Spoiler

Posted on Saturday, February 9th, 2008 by avatarofdumb
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Posted in general gamery, serious business

okay, so this game is goddamn awesome. i went to my friend's place last night around 8, and passed around the controllers from then until 3AM when i had to leave because the only other person still up went to bed. it’s a ridiculous amount of fun.


this game is not melee. everyone is floatier and jumps higher, and the game speed lands somewhere between melee and 64. most kills were vertical or horizontal, and it was uncommon to see someone fall to their death. people generally get to higher %ages, and comboing is harder because attacks have further knockback. characters automatically grab ledges off of jumps and most recovery attacks, so edge-guarding is much harder in brawl than in melee. all the physics exploits from melee are gone, and air dodges don't go in a direction anymore–they follow your current momentum.


i used: samus/zero (a ton), luigi, ike, marth, sonic, sheik, fox (a few to several times each), meta-knight, link, pit, pokemon trainer, snake, mario, and rob (once each). i saw every character played throughout the night, with the exception of game & watch, toon link, jigglypuff and wolf because they hadn't been unlocked and peach and zelda because nobody liked them.

samus/zero: zero samus is fucking amazing; great jumps, great aerials, long-range smashes, a useful projectile, a ranged throw that goes fairly fast with minimal lag, and good speed. regular samus is a worthless pile. she's much floatier and slower in the air than in melee, her missiles aren't as good, the charge shot takes longer to charge, her n air and dash attacks aren't as good, and her other issues (slow roll, mediocre vertical recovery) remain intact. i think the screw attack might be better this time around, but does it matter?

B: paralyzer – energy pistol shot that does decent damage and stuns based on charge time, with a maximum charge of a few seconds before it automatically fires. it's about as fast as a boomerang, but the range is somewhat limited.

>B: whip – whips out further than her smash, but with longer lag. i don't know much about attack; i didn't use it much.

vB: backflip – she performs a backflip that arcs in the direction she was facing, with decent vertical and horizontal range. it’s fairly fast, making it a fun combat tactic and a crucial third jump.

^B: whip – whips straight up or to the nearest ledge. decent range, although i haven't used it in combat as much as her better anti-air alternatives. still, it means zero samus has four great jumps, so her recovery is awesome.

final smash: power suit samus – she dons the power suit in a storm of energy, and deals some damage + knockback to anyone close to her. sadly, this final smash is 1) not that powerful, 2) leaves you vulnerable when you first transform into samus, and 3) leaves you as samus, but according to today's update you can lose the armor by mashing up + down taunts repeatedly!

notable A moves: her >/^ smashes are both whip attacks with good range (and knockback in the case of >), and her down smash inflicts a good few seconds of stun. zero’s aerials are all fairly good, and lead to juggling opportunities with her great jumps. i'm not sure what to make of her v air though, as it's one of the kicks (like sheik's and sonic's) that launches downward until it hits a platform, and has some predictability/lag issues.

samus moves:

final smash: zero laser – one of my favorite final smashes, because it's everything a final smash should be: powerful, useful on any stage, skill-rewarding, and escapable. it blows the holy hell out of anyone sorry enough to get hit, and leaves you as zero samus which is great.

luigi: anyone who loved luigi in ssb and hated his movement issues will be pleased to find that luigi kicks ass now. he is not nearly as floaty or slippery as melee, and has the same moveset with a few key upgrades.

>B: green missile – this time, the green missile doesn't require as much charge to hit hard, and when it misfires it doesn't rocket as far off the stage. it has more knockback, and works as a finisher.

^B: jump punch – i've found this easier to sweetspot in brawl, and much more powerful, leading to countless shouts of "SHOOOORYUKEN" last night ^____^. the only problem is that luigi can't grab ledges after using it, so it's a poor recovery move.

final smash: crazy dance – a large circle of inverted colors spreads outward from luigi, and he dances for several seconds to odd music. opponents in the circle fall into a trance and are prime targets for shoryukens. the whole effect lasts around 15 seconds, and after the first 10 or so the circle begins to shrink. you can avoid getting caught in the circle as long as you play intelligently, and it’s possible to escape the trance by wiggling the analog (although i can’t do it reliably).

ike: ike is awesome, but requires timing. most of his moves are much slower than marth's, but they have range and are ungodly powerful. i routinely killed people at 50-70% using his >smash, and when he connects it makes the sound of a gunshot holy fuck

B: eruption – unlike marth's charge B, ike stabs down into the stage to create a fiery explosion. the charge can be held indefinitely (like most charge moves this game, including green missile and shield breaker). the base damage is not much lower than fully charged, but i have yet to master the timing. it can stab through floors, which kicks huge amounts of ass.

>B: quick draw – another charge move. when you release, ike shoots forward and slices whomever was in his way. longer charges go further. like the fox illusion, you are vulnerable after performing this in the air. it’s a great move to balance out ike's slower attacks, as it lets you quickly close the distance on opponents. projectiles stop it.

vB: counter – like marth's, but a bit slower and more powerful.

^B: aether – imagine if final cutter looked awesome. now pretend that it was useful. you now have a rough idea of aether. ike throws his sword up fairly far, which smacks anyone who gets hit by it, and then jumps up to catch it and slash downward a la final cutter. ike doesn't flinch throughout this entire move, which has a large range and does good damage.

final smash: great aether – spectacularly awesome. ike throws up his sword, and jumps after it as it spins in the air. he then proceeds to beat the hell out of anyone caught in the initial throw for several seconds, and brings everyone back down in a huge final strike. i’m not sure if this is an instant kill regardless of percentage, but i never used it without KOing someone.

notable A moves: i didn’t spend much time with his aerials, but his > smash has good range and ridiculous power (if a slow windup), and his jab combo does a huge amount of damage and knockback for a “weak” move.

marth: marth is still one of the better characters, and retains his excellent speed, range, and tipping power from melee. his shield breaker is now a thrust instead of an arc, and can be held indefinitely like most of the other charge moves.

final smash: critical strike – marth flashes forward and scores a critical hit on anyone in his way. fast, but can be anticipated and dodged. i’m fairly sure this is an instant kill

sonic: while I didn’t get that great of a feel for him, i can confidently say that sonic is a good character. he moves and attacks with great speed, has some good aerials, and can even perform some moves after using his ^B.

B: homing attack – sonic charges in spin mode for a bit, then attacks the nearest opponent.

>B/vB: spindash – i didn’t use sonic enough to figure out the different uses for these moves, but in either case sonic charges a spindash and rockets at a fool.

^B: spring – sonic bounces off of a spring. great vertical distance, if a bit lacking horizontally. if used on the ground, other players can also jump on the spring until it disappears.

final smash: OVER NINE THOUSAAAAAAAAAAAND – sonic transforms into super sonic, loses all his moves and gains the ability to zoom around and run into people. he flies very fast, so it’s hard to control, but the damage and knockback are excellent and I never saw someone transform into super sonic without getting at least 2 kills. it lasts 15+ seconds, but can be dodged and takes some degree of skill to use effectively.

notable A moves: sonic’s ^ air is very similar to fox’s, and his > air is a horizontal drill kick that has good priority. it’s worth noting that drill/multiple hit moves are almost as good in brawl as they were in 64. like sheik and zero samus, sonic’s v air doesn’t stop until it hits a platform.

sheik: sheik lost some power with the transition from melee to brawl; because of the increased floatiness, it’s harder to combo and juggle with her. sheik’s attacks are essentially unchanged, with the exception of needles (which, unless completely charged, don’t fire unless you press B twice) and v air (which, as mentioned previously, doesn’t stop until it hits a platform, and doesn’t have nearly as much initial lag as it used to).

final smash: light arrow – this move is another of my favorite final smashes. sheik draws back her bow and lets loose a lightning-fast arrow. if it connects, it freezes time and shows the doomed characters for a split second before they rocket off the screen. it’s like the zero laser, but much faster (and harder to dodge), much narrower (and harder to hit with), and kills instantly. shooting someone who just respawned with a light arrow feels really, really good, and leads to excessive profanity.

fox: like sheik, fox is also hurt by brawl’s physics changes. his quick air game has been cut back in terms of power. his moves are essentially unchanged as well, although his side smash looks different.

final smash: landmaster – the landmaster is fucking retarded. fox calls down a gigantic tank and proceeds to ream everyone. while it doesn’t hurt to touch the tank, it only takes a couple blasts to get killed by it, and it’s easy to push people off the edge and shoot them as they try to recover. i’m sure i’d have a better time of dodging it once i gained more experience with the game, but for now landmaster is unstoppable on pretty much any stage smaller than, say, melee corneria. expect to die. a lot.

meta-knight: meta-knight is a bit tricky to use. he’s fairly fast and his attacks are quick, but nobody who used him last night was able to figure out his best finishers. he has excellent horizontal recovery, thanks to a combination of gliding, jumps, and his >B.

B: tornado – meta-knight begins whirling around, and damages everyone he touches. The path of the tornado can be controlled, and it works just as well in midair as it does on the ground (as opposed to the luigi cyclone).

>B: cannon drill – meta-knight launches forward, and damages anyone he touches. useful for recovery and, and a reliable way to close distance and get in some percentage.

vB: teleport – some sort of teleport move. i never used it, but some of my friends did.

^B: glide – to be honest, i have no idea how to use this move effectively. meta-knight launches into the air, loops around a bit and then SDs off the stage. twice. in one match. that i was about to win god dammit.

final smash: dimensional cape – meta-knight throws his cape around an opponent, the screen goes dark, and all opponents are cut with a huge slash that deals big damage and knockback, although it’s not an instant kill. in order to work properly, you have to perform it right next to someone; otherwise, nothing happens.

notable A moves: i only played one match with him, but holding A to unleash a flurry of sword strikes on an enemy is tons of fun. his moves are somewhat hard to hit with in general, because you must be precise with them due to their speed.

link: link was alright. he has good range as always, but his attacks are still somewhat slow and i don’t know if the spin attack is as good as it was in melee. the spin attack can be charged now, and the gale boomerang can suck opponents back towards link.

final smash: triforce slash – another of my favorites. link holds out the back of his fist, and a golden beam of light shoots from the triforce on his gauntlet. if it hits someone, two triforces imprison them as link goes to town with a barrage of slashes before winding up for a few seconds and finishing them off with a huge blow. i think it’s an instant kill, but make sure you’re actually going to connect before you press B, because every time someone whiffs a triforce slash maro considers putting one with nothing in 11th.

pit: pit stands with zero samus and sonic as one of the better newcomers. he has insane vertical and horizontal recovery thanks to his ^B, a good final smash, a reflector, a bevy of useful sword strikes, and one of the best/most goddamn annoying projectiles ever.

B: palutena’s arrow – pit shoots out a very quick arrow. charging increases the distance, and you can change the direction of the arrow by pressing up or down while it’s in motion. pit can also aim straight up with his bow. unlike the boomerang, the arrow’s direction can be changed by degrees, so given enough practice i imagine one can become quite the marksman.

>B: spinning blades – pit charges forward a short distance, spinning his knives. the spin continues for as long as you continue to mash B, and is hard to attack into. additionally, the wind from the spinning blades reflects projectiles. good attack, but i hope to god they’ve changed his battle cry for the american version because it makes me want to shoot someone.

vB: mirror shield – pit holds out a magical shield, which reflects items. it comes out fairly quickly, although i don’t think it can be used as an attack.

^B: wings of palutena – pits wings glow blue, and he flies upward in whatever direction you choose for what seems like forever. no joke, one of my friends accidentally killed himself with this by jumping into a star KO.

final smash: palutena’s army – pit calls on a bunch of small, irritating fairy soldiers, who are like more powerful, homing unown. this final smash gets worse as the stage gets bigger, but it’s always a fairly annoying move and relatively hard to dodge. it can kill at 0%, but you’d have to be really, really bad.

notable A moves: i don’t remember too much about him, but i believe his >smash is like link’s (2 blows you can stagger), and he does well in aerial combat.

pokemon trainer: it’s hard enough to get a sense for one character’s moveset in only one match, let alone three, so all i can give you is what you have probably already figured out: squirtle is fast and weak, ivysaur is mid-range, and charizard is slower and more powerful. however, i can tell you that the final smash is kickass.

final smash: team attack – hydro pump, solar beam and flamethrower. it has a decent width, comes out instantly, and has killed everyone it touched (though i’m not sure if it kills from 0%). it’s super effective!

when you lose all your stock as pokemon trainer, he stays in the background looking worried for his pokemon for the rest of the match.

snake: snake is a hard character to use, and i expect he’ll take a lot of practice to use well, but that the practice will be worth it. his moves are slower and sloppier than you would think, but if you get used to his timing he’s fairly powerful. he can crawl around to avoid most projectiles, and his box taunt damages if the box hits someone as it falls.

B: grenade – snake throws a grenade. after a couple seconds, it explodes. duh.

>B: nikita missile – snake shoots a nikita missile, which can be guided. to stop guiding the missile, l-cancel. the nikita inflicts decent damage and knockback.

vB: claymore – i didn’t use this.

^B: cypher – snake ascends for a few seconds using the remote sentry. snake can still perform some attacks after using the cypher.

final smash: grenade launcher – snake jumps into a helicopter and takes control of a grenade launcher. grenades do ~18 damage, have a lot of knockback, and explode large enough to catch more than one enemy in the blast. this is a very fair smash: powerful, but skill-intensive.

mario: mario, from the one game i played with him, is about the same as he was in melee. the only notable change is that the mario tornado is now v air, and his vB is now FLUDD, which i have no idea how to use well. i never got his final smash off, but you’ve all seen it so i won’t go into great detail.

rob: rob is surprisingly good. it deals acceptable damage, has good jumps, an excellent ^B, a good projectile, and a devastating < air.

B: laser – rob shoots a laser that deals a good amount of damage and goes through players to damage players behind them, like a wave beam. it has a cooldown period, though, and if you try to spam it you will not get very good results.

>B: to be honest, i don’t even remember.

vB: same.

^B: booster – rob uses the jets its his base to boost through the air. you have about 5 seconds of boost, but you can space them apart instead of using it all up at once.

final smash: robot rampage – rob shoots a sort of laser flamethrower from his eyes for the duration of the smash, and his attacks are replaced by a powerful spin move. the smash lasts for about 10-15 seconds.

further observations about characters i didn’t use:

-kirby doesn’t completely suck anymore; same for pikachu
-dedede is very slow, but the waddle-dee army is so cute >:3
-diddy is apparently worthless
-bowser is still awful, even with giga bowser taken into account
-ganondorf’s final smash is great: he transforms into beast ganon from twilight princess and charges off the screen before reappearing in human form. anyone taken down by beast ganon is instantly killed.
-lucario is basically mewtwo two. his A attacks seems to be better, but he’s still very floaty and has a similar ^B/B. hyper beam is ridiculous, though; lucario teleports to the top of the stage and shoots out a huge, powerful beam of energy, which you can slowly guide to the left or right.
-falco is not so good anymore—too floaty, too slow


the guy who owned the wii had already turned off many of the items, so i’ll just talk about the ones i thought were pretty cool.

-smash ball: this was done surprisingly well. the smash ball floats around the stage, and takes a number of hits to break. scrambling to get the smash ball is tense, exciting, and a whole lot of fun; you don’t get it so much as you win it. to use it, just press B. if you haven’t used it and somebody hits you hard enough, it floats free again.

-dragoon: once the first dragoon piece appears, it’s assured that the next two are coming. this creates a new and interesting dynamic, as players go after other players who have the pieces they need. the dragoon itself is fun to use as well; you have a limited amount of time to try and hit an enemy, and you only get one shot. if it hits, it’s an instant kill.

-firework launcher: you can alter the trajectory of your fireworks by tilting the analog, and the fireworks are fairly fast and powerful.

-assist trophy: some of them kind of suck, but andross, little mac, knuckle joe, gray fox, saki amiyama or whatever and the custom robos are all really good.

-beam sword: my favorite beam sword yet. its default length is almost longer than it ever got in melee, and it grows to fairly ridiculous proportions during a smash attack. each character uses the beam sword in a unique manner, which adds another layer of strategy.

i think i am done typing this ridiculous thing, so if you’d like to know about stages or music as well, i’ll answer any questions.