So. I think we can officially put the whole “enhanced port” thing to bed now, right? Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is shaping up to be something that truly lives up to its name, what with a completely insane roster, over 900 pieces of music, over 100 stages, and seemingly bottomless pit of options and modes to toggle through. But there’s more. We know there’s more. Sakurai said there’s more right there in last week’s Smash Direct. So the question now is, what the heck is left? What else could we reasonably hope for? I’ve been putting a lot of thought into that question, and I’m going to spend the next few weeks marinating over them. First up, assist trophies.
Assist trophies are so cool. They’re a great way to get characters in the game that wouldn’t necessarily work as full-on players. There’s already a pretty impressive list of assists out there spanning the history of video games on Nintendo platforms, but I say there’s still room for a few more. Here are the ones I not only want, but I think are likely to appear.
Wart (Super Mario series)
The final boss of Super Mario Bros. 2 needs some love. The thought crossed my mind to have him as an echo for K Rool, but that wouldn’t really work. Wart is big, but he’s never really done anything besides pace back and forth, barfing weird white cloud things. But that would make for such a great assist! The trajectory of his barfing would be really tough for people to dodge, especially if he wound up on a high platform. Plus, seeing him all done up in modern Smash-style graphics would be incredible.
Karate Joe/Chorus Kids (Rhythm Heaven series)
Rhythm Heaven is one of those Nintendo franchises that is positively begging to be represented in Smash in some form, and barring the possibility of a really cool stage based on the franchise (which would be incredible in its own right) I think having either Karate Joe or the Chorus Kids show up as assist trophies would be excellent. Karate Joe has action built right in. A few punches and kicks and you’re done for. The Chorus Kids though, would be something else. Probably just coming out and hurting you with their singing or something. I’d love to see it.
Isaac (Golden Sun series)
Isaac was already an assist trophy before, and gosh darn it, he needs to come back. Isaac would actually make for a pretty great player character, but since that seems like it’s not going to happen, having Golden Sun represented in assist trophy form is better than nothing.
Proto Man (Mega Man series)
We got Knuckles confirmed as an assist, and Elec Man was an assist in Smash 4. His character model is already made. He’s part of Mega Man’s final smash. He could work just like he did in Mega Man 3. Have his whistle play and then he jumps around shooting everyone until he teleports away. Look at that. He’s perfect!
The Rabbids (Raving Rabbids series)
A few years ago, I would have said to keep these critters away from Smash. But now that Mario + Rabbids is out there and it’s not only very successful but pretty darn good too, I say let them go nuts as assist trophies. Their whole schtick is creating mayhem, and having them flood the screen messing everyone up in bizarre ways would be great. Toss Rabbid Peach in there too for good measure.
Commander Video (Bit.trip series)
Shovel Knight paved the way for indie game characters becoming assist trophies, and the Bit.trip Runner himself should totally be there by his side. Commander Video got to be an actual trophy in Smash 4, so I think he’s due for an assist run in Ultimate. Having him zoom across the screen with his trademark rainbow trail behind him, knocking folks out of his way as he goes, sounds like quite a sight.
Chun Li/Akuma (Street Fighter series)
Street Fighter is already pretty well represented with Ryu and his stage (and some kick-ass music) but Chun Li and Akuma would certainly make for some great assist trophies. Chun Li could come out and lightning kick the crap out of some fools, while Akuma could show up and do the Raging Demon to anyone foolish enough to get in his way. Tell me that wouldn’t be incredible!
Tifa/Barrett/Aerith (Final Fantasy VII)
There’s something weird about Final Fantasy’s presence in Smash. Maybe it’s the fact that even though Cloud has appeared in some games on Nintendo platforms, Final Fantasy VII itself has not. I think that this feeling could be shaken a bit if some of Cloud’s more popular teammates came out for some assist goodness. This one I’d put as a trio. The three of them could come out and attack people as a team. Or individually. I guess I don’t care. But at least one of them needs to be an assist. If for no other reason than to make Cloud feel a little more at home.
King Hippo (Punch-Out!! series)
Really, Bald Bull would probably make the best assist because of his Bull Charge, but if there’s one character in the Punch-Out!! series that is recognizable, it’s King Hippo. He was such a memorable character in the NES game, and his reinvention for the incredible Punch-Out!! for Wii was pretty spectacular too. There’s no shortage of silly things he could come out and do to people, but I’d also want him for another reason…
Eggplant Wizard (Kid Icarus series)
Okay, hear me out. Eggplant Wizard would be the best assist trophy for a number of reasons. First, his design is as classic as it is hilarious. Second, the thought of him being able to turn any fighter into a walking eggplant for a period of time makes me smile. Seriously, that would be so great, and really different from the other status effects the game tosses at you. But third, if King Hippo was there too, the old Captain N villain team of Mother Brain, King Hippo, and Egglpant Wizard would finally be in the same place at the same time again and I would lose my mind! I’m already stoked to see Pit, Mega Man, and Simon Belmont reunited, having their bumbling villains represented would just be a dream come true. And speaking of which…
I know I wanted to keep this article full of things I think could realistically happen, and there’s pretty much a 0% chance of Kevin finding his way into Smash in any form, but gosh darn it, wouldn’t it be great if he did? There’s speculation out there that he’s the one holding the Zapper with the Duck Hunt character, but I don’t buy that. I’m not saying he needs to be a full on fighter (though he could absolutely pull it off) but he deserves Assist status. Thing is, while he’s a pretty important part of Nintendo of America’s history, he doesn’t mean squat to Nintendo of Japan, which is likely why this will never happen. I think that’s kind of absurd though. Yes, I know Smash is being made by Nintendo of Japan, and it’s brimming with awesome NOJ history, but NOA is a pretty big deal too, and a piece of its history like Captain N himself should get some love. Sakurai loves shining a spotlight on weird pieces of Nintendo history, and it doesn’t get much weirder than Captain N. He could use his NES controller belt buckle to teleport around the stage, pull out his Zapper to blast enemies, and his trusty dog Duke could even show up and bite some folks before they teleport away. I know it’s out there, but gosh darn it, I want it. I want it with all my heart.
The sky’s the limit when it comes to assist trophies, but those are the ones I want to see the most. Who did I miss? Let me know, and check back here next week for my thoughts on potential Echo Fighters!