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

The start of the affair: Super Smash Bros. 64

3:23 PM on 06.22.2008 // SWE3tMadness

[Editor's note: SWE3tMadness takes a look back at Super Smash Bros. 64 for her Monthly Musing contribution. -- CTZ

Like other bloggers have stated in this particular monthly musing, SSB 64 was not the first game I've played, nor was it necessarily the best. So why do I consider it the one game that marked my emergence as a gamer?

To answer that main question, let's fire up the Delorian and turn the clock back all the way to 1999 when I first sat down to play Super Smash Brothers.

I was nine-years-old at that point in time, and I had experiences with games before. At six or so, I played my first game on the honest-to-god original "Grey-Brick" Game Boy. Tetris to be exact. I played it all the time, it was so simple to pick up and understand that I mastered the controls in about 30 seconds and played it obsessively from then on. And I sucked at it. Horribly.

Different story with my younger brother. He's always been a whiz at games, as far back as I can remember. Anytime I exulted in what I thought was an incredible achievement, he would beat it in five minutes without breaking a sweat. So I resigned myself to always being a back-seat player. You know, the one that sits down in the basement behind the person holding the actual controller, clutching at the cheat guide as it it was a lifeline connecting her to the game she so desperately wanted to explore herself but couldn't bear the embarrassment of failure again. I was willing to play Navi to my sibling's Link if only, for a moment, to have some feeling of worth, a feeling that I could be useful and competent. As you can tell, my self-esteem was pretty much in the toilet back then.

But because of that detachment, I have no real Memory Cards or nostalgic moments from those days. Because I didn't have that personal experience of pushing the buttons or reacting to an enemy or physically hitting the right combo to slay the final boss, I have virtually no emotional sentimentality to those older games beyond "Oh yeah I remember that, it was really cool."

However, even more important than that, I had no conscious knowledge of what I was missing. I knew the experience would be different if I was the one who saved the princess instead of watching my brother, but by the time 1999 rolled around, I had stopped caring. I had more important things than videogames to worry about, and apart from the few series like Mario, Donkey Kong, and Pokèmon that we owned already, there were no other games that were worth checking out. I figured they were all just videogames, and I'd never be able to beat them myself, so there was reason to bother with anything else. 

But as soon as I sat down in my well-worn seat on the couch behind my brother to inaugurate SSB into our selective game library, I was confused. The commercial for the game showed four characters - Mario, Donkey Kong, Yoshi, and Pikachu - that I was familiar with. But what the heck is this pink blob? Or this dude in a space suit? This green guy ... I think his name's Zelda, my friend down the street has one of those games ... What's going on here?

It was at this point Super Smash Bros. opened the first door to the start of my true gaming experience. I realized that these characters must have been important or the developers wouldn't have spent the time and resources to put them in. When reading the little biographies included with each character, I heard stories of great exploits, adventures, victories, struggles, and legends. Each of these characters was a legend, and I had missed out on all of them. Like previously mentioned, I felt a desperate desire to connect with these games and explore all their mysteries and become a part of that legend.

Still, one other dusty, dark, barricaded door held me back, and would take much longer to open. That obstruction was my lack of confidence in my ability to explore those games on my own. But a shaft of light now peered through the cracks, giving me glimpses of what could be ...

Even then, however, it took a long time for me to even build up the nerve to attempt to play Super Smash Bros. The N64 trident felt bulky and foreign in my hands, like it was constructed for someone else and I had stolen it from its rightful owner. But I had made up my mind, I wanted to see what was behind that door for myself. I went straight to training mode and started working. Like Tetris, the controls were simple enough to learn quickly, and in no time at all I was proceeding to grind my analog stick into grey plastic dust.

Then, a miracle happened. A week later I defeated Master Hand. It was arguably the greatest moment of my gaming career. Finally, after so much heartache and disappointment, I had proved myself wrong and completed a game.

That wasn't the end though. Astonishingly enough, I wanted to do it again. I wanted to do it better. I wanted to train, and train I did. Just like seeing a glimpse of what was behind the rough polygonal figures of characters like Samus and Ness inspired me to broaden my view of games themselves, a taste of success at playing the game made me want to explore the details of the fighting system. Discovering combos, strategies, and always sharpening my now-burgeoning gaming reflexes became a routine for me. I passed the target tests, Board the Platforms, beat Race the Finish, and kept ratcheting up the difficulty until I was finishing off level six and seven players regularly. (Whooping my brother's ass, however, would have to wait until Melee.)

The final door wasn't just opened; I kicked it off its metaphorical hinges.

Super Smash Bros. helped pave the way to the gamer I am now by giving me a chance to finally venture out of my comfort zone; to have the confidence to try new experiences, to fail, and then to keep trying. Even if I'm defeated, I know that everything I've achieved is from my own skills, skills that can be improved. In the end, it has taught me that my victory lies not in defeating Master Hand, but in making the journey to face him.Photo Gallery: (3 images)
Click to zoom - browse by swipe, or use arrow keys

 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 * to your whitelists.

Status updates from C-bloggers

TheBlondeBass avatarTheBlondeBass
If you don't like Jack Frost the best I feel nothing but contempt towards you.
Batthink avatarBatthink
Regarding SMT favourites, mine is Succubus.
Gamemaniac3434 avatarGamemaniac3434
Hey, I here theres some premium blog o' mine just lying around the cblogs right now. Should go pick it up, while its still in stock-which is limited due to artificial scarcity. Also for favorite personas, I am also a big fan of samael. Cool design.
Sir Shenanigans avatarSir Shenanigans
Was going to start The Darkness 2 today but honestly I'm so into The Witcher I'm just going to keep that going, probably for the best, too. LETS GO SKELLIGE CAPN JACK SPARROW UP IN THIS
Nathan D avatarNathan D
Samael for me.
Jinx 01 avatarJinx 01
Am I the only one kinda turned off to Unravel because of the 10/10 score? I tend to see any 10/10 review as bullshit.
SayWord avatarSayWord
Gong Hey Fat Choy! Time to enjoy some delicious Shark Fin soup.
Occams avatarOccams
I've always been rather partial to Satan.
TheAngriestCarp avatarTheAngriestCarp
Every time Nekro changes his avatar, God lets a child in a third-world country starve to death. When will the killing stop, Nekro?
Jiraya avatarJiraya
Undertale ending in anime version (don't watch it if you have not played it yet) !
ikiryou avatarikiryou
Pixie isn't my abfave demon, but this cosplay is hhnnggalicious
TheAngriestCarp avatarTheAngriestCarp
El Dango avatarEl Dango
What if the 'OOSE' thing in the new Bourne poster is deliberate? What if it's like the bad guy or something?
drmcscott avatardrmcscott
No more night Xcom. Cant sleep. No more night Xcom. Cant sleep. WOrk perofmence bad. No moe night Xconm. Nad. Cmat sleep. Hep me! HJkelp me!
Nekrosys avatarNekrosys
SMT demons, huh? There's really only one choice.
Malthor avatarMalthor
One of my favourite demons from SMT is Samael, his death magic and Megido spell are always a great help( Megido especially made him the bane of golden hands in my last P4 playthrough). Plus he looks pretty badass.
FakePlasticTree avatarFakePlasticTree
Favorite demon in Shin Megami Tensei, eh? Oh, I got many but so I'll just pick one for now whom is a beast in the Persona series. Yoshitsune--Hassou Tobi, Heat Riser = Don't fear the REAPER!
Flegma avatarFlegma
Played half an hour of Last Story. Yay, British voices! But the absence of colours makes me want to play other games instead, especially in this greyscale season.
HeyItsDad avatarHeyItsDad
There's not even enough reviews out to give Digimon Story: Cyber Sleuth a rating on Metacritic...what's up with this?
ooktar avatarooktar
Dat Booty.
more quickposts



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 -