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The release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is just over a month away, and the game’s final Nintendo Direct just premiered. In case you missed it, Nintendo packed in 40 minutes worth of information about the game—including a segment where everyone dies except for Kirby. (Congrats, Kirby?)
Nintendo’s Direct also unveiled Ultimate’s final two newcomers: Ken from Street Fighter and the Pokémon Incineroar. The game will feature 74 fighters in total, but more fighters will come in paid DLC sets for $5.99 each. Alternatively, players can purchase a fighter pass for $24.99 to access five fighter sets.
To sweeten the deal, Nintendo also unveiled the game’s first post-launch character: Super Mario’s Piranha Plant. He’s free for every player that picks up the game before Jan. 31, and fans can expect him to arrive “a couple of months” after the game launches.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate also introduces Spirits, a new buff system which lets players equip iconic characters that provide special abilities to their fighter. There are four different Spirit classes in total, and players can assign both a primary Spirit and support Spirits.
To win Spirits, players engage in Spirit Battles against a fighter with an attached Spirit. These range from Dr. Mario dressed like Metal Gear Solid’s Hal Emmerich to a Pikachu with a Mimikyu Spirit.
It didn’t take long for the memes to begin. Players loved the new characters and Spirits.
PIRANHA PLANT IN SMASH BECAUSE FUCK YOU THATS WHY https://t.co/rMsyLpPibm— Nanami's [E]gg @ missing Japan already (@NanamisEgg) November 1, 2018
EVO 2020. Everyone is on Twitter, watching the Smash stream miserably. "Why is everyone playing only Pihrana Plant", they cry. "PIRHANA PLANT!!" chant the players in unison— mcc (@mcclure111) November 1, 2018
Not watching the smash direct yet but this is so funny pic.twitter.com/7uncc8GSC6— gabe (@godlierbarnacle) November 1, 2018
Sakurai: "You can now customize 74 fighters and their difficulty with spirits, in 11 fully-voiced languages, with options to make online play both easier and more competitive at all levels."— Mike Drucker (@MikeDrucker) November 1, 2018
Smash Bros. Fans: "Okay, but when is the L block from Tetris playable?"
now never ask me for anything again pic.twitter.com/djqECfFFMK— j a c k s o n (@headfallsoff) November 1, 2018
THE 69TH SMASH BROTHER IS INCINEROAR, I EXPECT HORNY ON MY DESK AT NOON pic.twitter.com/Jf5nrmKOWl— Forearms Dæmon (@FourArmsDemon) November 1, 2018
Others were taken aback by certain introductions.
So they really put twink ocelot in but not old bitch or sexy bitch ocelot in huh. Ok I see how it is pic.twitter.com/PKWTkKFrsA— OTASUNE FOR SMASH (@otasune) November 1, 2018
oh great image pic.twitter.com/bBBJTpdINP— trey! (@RosePrinceTrey) November 1, 2018
"If y'all wanna see more characters added to the Smash roster gimme a 'Hell Yeah!'" pic.twitter.com/Rkgh6Y8V4C— Steve Yurko @ Anime NYC P123 (@SteveYurko) November 1, 2018
when i character i really wanted but knew sure as hell wasn't getting in smash doesn't get in smash pic.twitter.com/qOrpNKrRyo— your uncle (@uncle_advice_) November 1, 2018
welp smash is league now— ♡♪!? (@SkyWilliams) November 1, 2018
runes and masteries are now primary spirits and sub spirits
what a time to be alive
post direct feels pic.twitter.com/k548BlDohC— Smash Bros Ultimemes (@smashbrosmemes) November 1, 2018
Players quickly realized that the so-called “Grinch” character roster rumor wasn’t true and bemoaned the fact on Twitter. For those unfamiliar, the alleged leak claimed Shadow the Hedgehog, Banjo-Kazooie, and Super Mario RPG’s Geno would be revealed as fighters, among others. Fans believed the leak was accurate because of an elaborate hoax geared around a Snapchat photo-alongside, a never-before-seen promotional image for The Grinch.
spending every waking minute from now until the Smash Bros. direct sending death threats to anyone who does not believe that the "grinch leak" is real— 9 V O L T (@9_volt_) October 31, 2018
RIP Grinch Leak 2018-2018 fuck off— Victoria Rose is a freelancer for now :3c (@riningear) November 1, 2018
dammit they got me i really believed banjo would be in this game— j a c k s o n (@headfallsoff) November 1, 2018
*Fans anticipate Geno, Banjo, Issac, Shadow and more*— Masahiro Sakurai (@Nin_SmashBros) November 1, 2018
It's November 1st, 2018. You wake up bright and early for the smash direct, you're totally okay with the fact that the Grinch leak is fake when all the sudden,, fucking piranha plant fucks up mario's shit— PIRANHA PLANT MAIN (@GrandpaDiedLW) November 1, 2018
i remember seeing someone type 3 whole structured paragraphs on why the grinch smash leak is real..... look where we are now— ❄기린해돋이 ネッコヤ² (@moohaedodi) November 1, 2018
So.— Scott Frerichs 🏳️🌈🎃 (@KaiserNeko) November 1, 2018
Smash leaks made a bunch of people sad.
What have we learned, folks?
Last but not least, there was the incredibly dramatic ending to the Direct, showing off the game’s single-player mode, World of Light. In the trailer, everyone’s Spirits are separated from their bodies by an enormous cosmic force, and only Kirby remains.
Fans had some questions afterward.
I can't believe Nintendo ended their final Smash Ultimate direct by literally killing off their entire roster. Wow. pic.twitter.com/c30keb5HoM— HDKirin (@HDKirin) November 1, 2018
The new Smash Bros roster. pic.twitter.com/abSJ4HnV8z— SteeScribbles (@SteeScribbles) November 1, 2018
The villain of Smash Bros. Ultimate's story mode turns out to be--smash fans angry about the game's final roster pic.twitter.com/tUkuBaJzxN— AmericanTruckSongs8 (@ethangach) November 1, 2018
feel like sakurai murdering literally every smash character in cinematics is his catharsis for dealing with the most ungrateful fanbase in the entire world— SungWon Cho (ProZD) (@prozdkp) November 1, 2018
Sonic finally makes it into a CGI Smash cutscene— Tracker (@Tracker_TD) November 1, 2018
just in time to fucking DIE pic.twitter.com/t7WZiveuJB
Smash Brothers 64: haha these are all my action figures!!! So fun 🙂— Yohosie @ DH ATL (@yohosiefgc) November 1, 2018
Smash Brothers Ultimate: everyone fucking dies but Kirby and you must seek vengeance on God to Save their Soul
One of the top 5 worst moments of my life was when I saw every smash brothers character destroyed before my eyes - and yet the hated "KIRBY" survived via cheating and duplicity— g0m (@g0m) November 1, 2018
smash’s adventure mode will be all about FUN!! here’s five minutes of your favorite characters getting cosmically eviscerated— Louie Zong (@everydaylouie) November 1, 2018
Smash Bros Ultimate Adventure Mode. pic.twitter.com/AxozpjHKfr— Cy (@Cybrid101) November 1, 2018
yeah you better be excited for smash or ELSE pic.twitter.com/iedGksyAB1— Eric Bailey (@EricVBailey) November 1, 2018
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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is available for pre-order for Nintendo Switch. Players that register their game with My Nintendo before Jan. 31 receive Piranha Plant for free.
Ana Valens is a reporter specializing in online queer communities, marginalized identities, and adult content creation. She is Daily Dot's Trans/Sex columnist. Her work has appeared at Vice, Vox, Truthout, Bitch Media, Kill Screen, Rolling Stone, and the Toast. She lives in Brooklyn, New York, and spends her free time developing queer adult games.