Note: iOS 9 + Facebook users w/ trouble scrolling: #super sorry# we hope to fix it asap. In the meantime Chrome Mobile is a reach around
hot  /  reviews  /  videos  /  cblogs  /  qposts

No Brawl, no fall

6:45 PM on 07.14.2014 // OneMrBean

Promoted from our Community Blogs!

[Continuing our 'round the clock Super Smash Bros. coverage, here's a wonderful rebuttal to Jonathan Holmes' recent "tripping" piece from the creator of Soundodger+! I love promoting differing opinions, so if you have something to share yourself, go write something! --Mr Andy Dixon]

[photo cred]

Super Smash Bros. is a series that's near and dear to my heart, a franchise I've put more time into than any other. It's the series that gathered friends on N64 long after Goldeneye's Facility grew stale. It's the series that brought friends together each weekend during highschool, where items were on MAX and Poké Floats was on the Random Select list. It was also the series that made me lose contact with various friends in college as I learned about advanced techniques, competitive play, and became obsessed with achieving total control.

My dorm in general became a hub for advanced play in Melee, as the four of us would play for hours every day (for years), perfecting the wavedash, dissecting the SHFFL, and learning when to edge tech ("you know that moment before you think you should tech? It's the moment before that."). There used to be a large family of casual and more advanced players, but once we went in the deep end, two camps were solidly formed. Some joined our side, while others stayed behind with their... items... and free-for-alls.

We stayed separate. Our discussion circles talked of wildly different stories, albeit from the same game. It wasn't until Brawl came out that we found ourselves together again, standing in line at the game's midnight launch at our local GameStop. We came back to the dorms, played free-for-alls with items on, Smash Balls galore, the works. We soaked ourselves in the experience Sakurai designed for us. After a few hours, people turned in for the night, never to rejoin our side again.

Our dorm henceforth became a battle center, with analysis of changes to mechanics, physics, controls, etc. We poured countless hours into research on how to make Brawl fun. After two months, we reached our conclusion.

Brawl was ejected from the Wii.

Melee was reinstated.

Fun was had again. And by "fun", I mean our dorm became a place of high-stress, unnecessary yelling, and overall negativity toward one another, even when we were just messing around. For some reason we thrived on this idea of total control, to be able to have our characters do exactly as we intended, in exchange for hypothetical ulcers and frowny times.

Just what was changed in Brawl that made us quit within a couple months? It's the same thing anyone will tell you: physics and tripping. The physics became floatier, which broke the rock-paper-scissors balance. In Melee: blocks trump attacks, attacks trump grabs, and grabs trump blocks. It's a beautiful cycle that allows punishing, improvisation, and usually some comboing. The floatiness in Brawl breaks this chain, as you can't combo anymore from a grab (with few exceptions). The poke-wait-combo tactic in Melee simply becomes a game of poke-until-death in Brawl.

And then there's tripping. I've never seen a single mechanic in a game that divided a community as harshly as tripping has. In Brawl, you have a % chance of tripping upon dashing or certain attacks, which in turn forces your character to flop onto the ground and suffer a little vulnerability. Some people applaud its randomness that evens the skill gap, while others condemn it for introducing an uncontrollable element. I'm among the loathers of tripping, not just because it prevents achieving total control, but because it can never be fully avoided.

If you ask people what their favorite hardest game is, you'll get a bunch of answers -- Dark Souls, Super Meat Boy, VVVVVV, Spelunky, etc. -- but they'll always add an additional comment: "I love how whenever I lose, I only blame myself and not the game." If you start playing a known-to-be-hard game that suddenly takes control away from you, the whole vision of one day mastering that game becomes a bit less motivating.

Take for example the jars in Spelunky that usually have treasure inside of them, but every once in a while contain a snake or something that pops out and damages you. That's super sneaky! But it's not unfair, because it can be avoided. You simply learn to whip jars from a distance or throw them in order to see their contents. Such a strategy for avoiding tripping in Brawl does not exist.

I would like to think that tripping is in Melee, except it's only initiated by bad inputs from the player. In that sense I've tripped thousands of times in Melee. I've missed critical moments because my character failed to do the thing I intended to do. And it was always my fault. In Brawl, that critical and unpredictable error is now being determined by the game, on top of your own fumbling fingers.

As someone who lost his happy thought for how to enjoy casual Smash Bros., I can at least peek through the window and say tripping is welcome in a casual environment. It's no different than the crapshoot of a Pokeball. It's fun when it happens, as plans are halted to make way for impromptu punishments. However, in a competitive scenario, it's an element of helplessness that prevents a fair assessment of a player's skills. This isn't because the tripper's plans have been cancelled, but because a less-skilled combatant can come in and clean up, placing higher in a tournament, while earning no additional respect (which has happened).

To echo Jonathan Holmes, the tripping issue could be solved by simply having a slider: "none, some, a lot". This would allow people to just turn it off if it bothers them. As for the physics issue, which I think is far more off-putting, there's always Project M or good ole Melee. I'll of course be picking up Smash 4, especially after the relatively good experience I had with it at E3. At least Sakurai and company have a special online mode just for control freaks like me - where items are off, the stage is flat, and everyone can fairly and deservedly earn their shiny golden ulcers.



OneMrBean,
 Follow Blog + disclosure

This blog submitted to our editor via our Community Blogs, and then it made it to the home page! You can follow community members and vote up their blogs - support each other so we can promote a more diverse and deep content mix on our home page.





 Setup email comments

Unsavory comments? Please report harassment, spam, and hate speech to our community fisters, and flag the user (we will ban users dishing bad karma). Can't see comments? Apps like Avast or browser extensions can cause it. You can fix it by adding *.disqus.com to your whitelists.

 Quickposts
Status updates from C-bloggers

RadicalYoseph avatarRadicalYoseph
What I've gathered from the quick posts the last two days is that demons from SMT look like genitals.
SayWord avatarSayWord
Took awhile but it is finally here, oh how I missed playing with you Nep Nep. Though I still cannot decide if I should put that PS4 skin on...
Nathan D avatarNathan D
Rei is humbled by the fairly high number of faps you have given her Waifu Wars piece.
Parismio avatarParismio
The actual best SMT girl is here:
JohnSmith123 avatarJohnSmith123
So 1-10 of Destiny isn't so bad. Been having a bit of fun with it, though people don't talk much on PSN. Good? Bad? I will never talk smack about Destiny only because it has this dance in it.
Barry Kelly avatarBarry Kelly
If you agree to let Harley Quinn tattoo you with her brand new tattoo gun, you deserve to live with the consequences of that incredibly poor life choice.
TheKodu avatarTheKodu
Not being from the US I have no horse in the US election race. But still I do like video games
WryGuy avatarWryGuy
OP and a playable character in Devil Survivor.
Pixie The Fairy avatarPixie The Fairy
Nemissa is best SMT demon girl.
Scrustle avatarScrustle
Made to mid-A rank! Pretty hyped about it. Got knocked out of A- twice without winning a single match, but tonight I climbed al the way through with no trouble! The N-Zap is so good for Splat Zones.
James Internet Ego avatarJames Internet Ego
I want one.
Tom avatarTom
Heat avatarHeat
He's best friends with Arioch!
Fuzunga avatarFuzunga
This thing finally arrived. Took forever!
SayWord avatarSayWord
Sorry guys and gals, this demon pussy is bestest.
ShadeOfLight avatarShadeOfLight
Just sayin'.
FakePlasticTree avatarFakePlasticTree
Best demon-girl, however, is obviously Shadow Labrys-cause shut up baby you know it!
SeymourDuncan17 avatarSeymourDuncan17
Also, Jonathan is best mainline SMT waifu. He can instill his Law within me anytime.
Serethyn avatarSerethyn
Anyone who doesn't like Pyro Jack?
Parismio avatarParismio
Please all your demons are dumb. They're dumb demons. Behold the magnificence of OSE!
more quickposts


Contest!


Seriously

Invert site colors

  Dark Theme
  Light Theme


Destructoid means family.
Living the dream, since 2006

Pssst. konami code + enter

modernmethod logo



Back to Top


We follow moms on   Facebook  and   Twitter
  Light Theme      Dark Theme
Pssst. Konami Code + Enter!
You may remix stuff our site under creative commons w/@
- Destructoid means family. Living the dream, since 2006 -