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If Nintendo re-released Super Smash Bros. Melee now, they should make these 3 improvements

Posted by Justin 'AdaptiveTrigger' Gordon • December 3, 2020 at 2:40 p.m. PST • Comments: 39

Super Smash Bros. Melee was released on November 21, 2001 — over 19 years ago. Although Brawl, Smash 4 and Ultimate have been released as sequels in the Super Smash Bros. series since then, Melee still has a very active competitive scene.

There is something truly special about Super Smash Bros. Melee. Considering how popular the second entry is in a series that currently has five games, it's quite strange how Nintendo hasn't done a re-release for Melee yet.

Of course, some changes to a re-release would absolutely be necessary. As a re-release, Nintendo would have to make some improvements to Melee's code as the Smash community probably wouldn't be very accepting if Melee were simply repackaged as it is.

There are certain things about Melee that the community likely don't want to see changed. For one, they probably don't want to see any adjustments to the game's balance.

Perhaps more accurately, high level Melee players wouldn't trust that Nintendo would make the right decisions for adjusting Melee's gameplay since the company has had a history of removing advanced techniques.

Then again, most players might be alright with the removal of Ice Climbers' Wobbling — an infinite that can be set up by a single grab if both Ice Climbers are available to pummel. Still, Nintendo would have to tread carefully here.

Advanced techniques like wavedashing and L-canceling are an absolute must to keep if Nintendo wants a win with the competitive Melee scene. While many might be against the idea of lowering the skill ceiling for techniques like these, Nintendo might inevitably have to do something here considering how harsh Melee's execution is to the hands.

But let's take a closer look at what three changes are necessary for a Super Smash Bros. Melee re-release.

Stable online experience

As we approach 2021, rollback netcode for fighting games is becoming more and more standard. Considering that fans have found some success with Slippi Online, unofficial implementation of rollback netcode for Super Smash Bros. Melee, Nintendo should really look into getting this to work for the sake of a stable online experience.

Players should have the opportunity to play with friends and random opponents from great distances. Of course, there should be a variety of different modes so competitive players can compete against one another while others can treat it more like a party game with free-for-all versus and items turned on.

If the online play isn't near perfect, then it might as well not exist. So this is an absolute must for a Melee re-release to be successful.

Fixes for detrimental bugs

While it could be debated whether or not wavedashing and L-canceling are unintended bugs or not, those aspects of Melee should remain as previously mentioned.

However, there are some bugs that should definitely be addressed in a re-release. These tend to be more detrimental to the gameplay.

Anything that can freeze or outright crash Melee should just be removed. For example, there's no need of anything like the "black hole glitch" which can outright freeze the game when too many objects are colliding together at the same time.

In addition, Nintendo should apply what is known as the "universal controller fix." This implementation is intended to address discrepancies with GameCube controllers. Without UCF, a player with a better GameCube controller — essentially a controller with a rare "defect" — will be able to perform advanced techniques with more consistency against a player using a worse controller.

Updated graphics

Since Melee is a game that was released nearly 20 years ago, it doesn't look great on HD televisions. Melee's graphics will need to be revamped for a re-release to work.

The game should look great for players and spectators alike. Tournament organizers also shouldn't have to worry about CRT monitors.

Super Mario Sunshine and Super Mario Galaxy of Super Mario 3D All-Stars run pretty well at 1080p on a docked Nintendo Switch. Needless to say, a Melee re-release could follow suit here.

Of course, it's also extremely important that the input delay is as low as it can possibly be since many techniques are very execution intensive. Graphics need to look good, but not at the expense of the gameplay.

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