It was all out of a desire to please literally everyone, as it turns out.
“Everyone is here”, the billing for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate goes. The pitch is simple—literally every single character who has ever appeared in Super Smash Bros. previously, whether in an older game, or as DLC, will be in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, alongside new characters to boot. It’s a monstrous endeavour, which brings the size of the total roster of characters to over 74–not even counting the crazy amounts of content it looks like the game will have otherwise.
What in the world could possibly have possessed Masahiro Sakurai, who is the director of Smash Bros. Ultimate, as well as series creator, to do something like this? Speaking to Game Informer, Sakurai noted that the decision was borne out of an endeavour to please all fans, so that nobody would be disappointed—though he does wryly add at the end that Ultimate’s reception shows him that everyone will never be satisfied, presumably a nod to the bad behavior of Waluigi fans.
“This time, I worked with the same company and same team that worked on Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS titles,” Sakurai said. “And in those titles, we were able to include quite a few fighters. So I thought, if we work a bit harder, we can make the dream of including all fighters come true, so we went for it.
“There will be people who might feel disappointed if fighters that appeared in a previous title are not included. I didn’t want any players to feel that way, so we worked really hard to make this happen.
“But what I learned is that regardless of doing our utmost, no matter how hard we try, and no matter how many fighters we include, there will always be people who feel that way.”
That said, Sakurai does express gratitude at the overwhelmingly positive reception the game has received from fans, the few run-ins mentioned above notwithstanding. So it seems like he does feel that it was all worth it in the end.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate launches exclusively on the Nintendo Switch on December 7.