I scan the challenges page for the fifth time in a single sitting, trying to find another task that I could seemingly accomplish. So far, I have knocked out most of the bottom rows on this glorified spreadsheet, leaving only the intermediate and extremely difficult challenges. I decide to try playing through the Classic Mode on high intensity once again, adding another character to the list of victors. The nagging doubt in the corner of my mind blossoms into full-fledged fact: this new Smash Brothers is not for me.
I was not expecting such a realization. Since the announcement of this game at the outset of the Wii-U, I have been eager to play it. It seemed like the reason to own Nintendo’s latest console from the start; the killer app for which I would certainly buy a new system. Once character details started to emerge, my desire turned into frothing madness for the chance to play as Mega Man in a fighting game once more.
I had been consumed by the previous entry in the Smash series, even though I never owned a Wii. I bought the game to play on various friends’ consoles, which led to several fun weekends of burning through the oddly titled in-game epic, “The Subspace Emissary.” This adventure mode was a massive treat for someone like me, who focused less on the technical details of combat and more on the idea of Smash Brothers as a sort of gigantic fan fiction starring every character from Nintendo’s Pantheon.
Now that players would have Pac-Man and the Duck Hunt Dog at their disposal, the prospect of a story mode for the new Smash Brothers had the potential to be a hilarious journey. Instead of the sort of space opera from Brawl, this new adventure could be a goofy romp akin to the Saturday morning cartoons of my youth. Sadly, this was not to be. The development team decided that there would be no such mode in Smash Brothers for Wii-U.
The lack of a story mode certainly doesn’t ruin my time with Smash Brothers. This is a fun game with plenty of new characters with which to whomp on my opponents. The processing power of the Wii-U provides gorgeous visuals and there are over 300 different tunes to enjoy while brawling. I’m just disappointed that my time with the latest Smash Brothers will not include gathering my friends for an epic adventure featuring Mega Man, Little Mac, Wii Fit Trainer, and Lucario.
Instead, the time spent with this game will be limited to how long it takes to get tired of the demands of the Challenge Board. As “Clearing All-Star Mode on hard difficulty with all characters” looms in the distance, I doubt it will take long.