Sakurai not aiming for complete balance in new Smash Bros.

Smash Bros creator Masahiro Sakurai is slugging through twelve-hour shifts and taking up residence within walking distance from Super Smash Bros. 4’s development studio. He’s playing four-player matches on his lunch and inputting damage rates and hit boxes all by his lonesome. If the latest Smash installment disappoints, it won’t be for lack of effort on its creator’s part.

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Sakurai is personally ensuring that all these hits, slashes, and headbutts register.

Polygon covered Sakurai’s most recent interview with Famitsu, in which Sakurai described everything from his daily schedule to the finer points of tweaking character motions. It’s a great read if you have time; if you don’t, consider this one nugget that stuck out:

[…] we have to work to keep things dynamic and not over-fine-tune the balance. If we aim for complete fairness, there won’t be any personality to it.

It’s an interesting take, as fighting game fans everywhere often lust over the idea of a perfectly balanced game. Back in Melee’s glory years, my friends and I itched for a Smash Bros. game where smack-dummies like Bowser could hang with Fox, Marth, and Sheik. Now it seems that not only is perfect balance unattainable, but the series creator himself wants nothing to do with it.

And you know what? I’m a-okay with it.

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How’s another five years of ass-kickings sound, Bowser?

Isn’t the whole point of fighting games to weed through the roster and find the three or four characters you’re most comfortable with? If those particular character happen to be technically better than others, so be it.

Now, Smash Bros. complicates the situation with dozens of gaming icons. And when you have icons, you have fans who get riled when their favorite character(s) end up on the low-tier. But there’s a huge difference between an unbalanced game and a broken one.

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3 thoughts on “Sakurai not aiming for complete balance in new Smash Bros.

  1. Heck, none of the Smash Bros. games have ever had balance. Melee and Brawl more so than the original had character imbalance and tiers people created, but that’s fighting games as a whole. You find who you like, spend time in Training Mode, play some multiplayer, play with friends, and so on. All Sakurai needs to aim for is making the online experience more complete. And by that, we mean stable.

    • I hear you.. Brawl’s online was a colossal disappointment. I expected to be brawling every night with my long-distance friends, but we tried it once and couldn’t endure the lag.

  2. My biggest concern is the missing Gamecube controller support. It was perfect for this game. Playing with WiiMote and Nunchuk is just awful, and I highly doubt that everybody owns more than one Wii U Pro controller.

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