Don’t get me wrong, I love Smash Bros, I have for a while. I have the fondest memories of staying up until 3am, playing Smash Bros with my roommates during my brief stint in University. Hell, it’s what won me the respect of those guys when I first moved in. And I don’t want to toot my own horn, or sound arrogant, but we played that game so much that it got to the point that we were so good, that it stopped being fun; it became serious business.
And that’s kind of what made us into superior fighters. Smash Bros got intense, and anything that was even the smallest bit…let’s say dishonorable, was met with extreme rage and discontent. Edge Guarding, Meteor Smashes, and Spamming these were all things that started to find their way out of our battles since we all agreed they were cheap, and no one liked playing against people who were cheap.
Now, I’ve never been big in the online tournament fighter racket. I’ve never played Street Fighter or Mortal Kombat or any other crazy high speed fighter online, or in the Con tournaments for that matter so I don’t really know if the rules are different, but I do know what I’ve seen online in Smash Bros and I need to say something about it.
You cheap a-holes playing Smash Bros suck and you make the game horrible for everyone.
It was something I first noticed on the 3DS version, and apparently people have talked about with Brawl (but who the hell played Brawl online? #amiright?) Almost 90% of people play the defensive. They keep their distance, or try getting close usually by running up to you, blocking or immediately dodge-rolling back. They goad you into running to them so they can block and grab you for quick, easy damage. Usually they throw you upwards and follow up with aerial combos, or throw you off the edge and attack you as you try to return and are most vulnerable. On the WiiU version it’s a bit different since so many people now have Gamecube controllers and so rather than block and grab, they just block and c-stick smash.
I’ve actually played games where people will stand on one end of the map for whole minutes until you come to them. You’ll see a lot of Marios, Little Mac’s and Lucinas (although the Lucinas are easy to beat since people just exploit her counter, and it’s easy to see through that).
And I know what you’re thinking “this guy probably sucks at Smash Bros and is bitching because he loses.” Well no, I’ve had the ever loving stuff kicked out of me by a few REALLY good players, and I have no problem with that. I have the utmost respect for people who actually show skill at the game. What I don’t like is people who use cheap tactics and exploits to win in the simplest way possible. The thing about being cheap in Smash is that it’s super easy (I’ve tested it a few times with Samus. Spam the missiles and charge shot, it’s not hard to win) and it’s difficult to navigate around since that kind of strategy essentially kicks you as your down.
I’ve got a friend who I beat a lot on the 3DS version since as he claimed “he was no good with the 3DS control scheme.” Realistically, he just played like a coward, playing the defensive, spamming like hell with Samus and Link, edge guarding and just generally not being great at the game. He scored some wins here and there because like I said, it’s hard to fully get around someone who’s cheap. But suddenly since he’s got a Gamecube controller and can use the c-stick for fast smashes, he thinks he is now a Smash Bros god. I’ve played him since and he still plays the same way, only now rather than blocking and grabbing on the defense, he can quick smash and score easy kills. In no way does he stack combos, or display any skill, he just rolls around, launches missiles or charge blasts off the edge, hunts you as you’re returning and goes for the easiest kill. Where’s the fun in that?
And he will swear up and down that spamming is the cheapest thing and makes the game not fun, though he’s completely not opposed to using it, but then says edge guarding isn’t cheap at all. In his words “why wouldn’t I attack if I had the opportunity?”
Which brings me, I think, to my main point. To play devil’s advocate, I get that in a fighting game, or any competitive game for that matter, the goal is to win. And being a ninja, I get that you would use any dirty trick to win. After all, a win is a win right? Doesn’t matter how you did it, as long as you’re the last man standing. And trust me, I’m not some gaming martyr who plays Smash just for sport and isn’t interested in winning. I LOVE winning. But I savor the victory more if it was done with honor and skill.
But what is the point? The game does keep record of you wins and losses online, but no one can see it but you. I have tried very hard to look for that info on players, in game and I cannot for the life of me find it. So it would make sense, if on a global scale people can see your records and you want to have the most wins, but you can’t. So if only you can see your amazing Smash Bros record, why has this atmosphere been created where people will fight in the worst, most unimaginative way possible?
And I repeat, this isn’t a few matches here and there. I have clocked 10 hours into Smash since I started playing on Saturday afternoon, and easily 40 hours on the 3DS version. I’m talking easily over 500 battles and 90% of them were people who play like cheap a-holes.
So to anyone who may be reading this, if this sounds like how you play. Don’t. I repeat, DO NOT PLAY LIKE THIS YOU CHEAP ASSHOLE YOU ARE RUINING THE GAME FOR EVERYONE. Learn to play offensively, learn some combos that require skill (I fought one guy as Luigi and he killed me! He had this wicked down-throw to tornado combo I had never seen before, he was actually good!) Let people get back to the battlefield if you didn’t knock them off; what, are you so scared they might beat you? The reason I give people space when they’re coming back is because I have confidence in my own abilities, I don’t need to bar them from reentry. Stop being cheap and start making this game more fun to play.