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Most Super Smash Bros. Ultimate DLC have had defining mechanics, so what can we expect next with the E3 reveal?

Posted by Justin 'AdaptiveTrigger' Gordon • June 8, 2021 at 10:47 a.m. PDT • Comments: 8

According to Masahiro Sakurai, only the Challenger Pack 10 and Challenger Pack 11 of the Fighters Pass Vol. 2 remain for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's DLC. It's highly likely (though not yet confirmed) that at least one of these new characters will be unveiled on June 15 via the E3 2021 Nintendo Direct.

What can we expect from the next newcomer to join the series? Like most of the other DLC fighters that have joined thus far, they'll probably have access to some defining mechanics that should make them stand out in the 86 character roster (final).

First off, let's take a look at the unique mechanics that have been offered by previous DLC characters in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Piranha Plant

There's plenty of evidence to suggest that Piranha Plant was actually planned to be part of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's base roster, but was instead made into DLC as to not delay the game.

As such, Piranha Plant is actually a fairly standard fighter. Though its Ptooie, Poison Breath and Long-Stem Strike specials are certainly unique in their functionality, these are still effectively just moves in the Piranha Plant's moveset that don't have any unique mechanics backing them.

Joker

Joker's unique mechanic is his Rebellion Gauge. Once he receives enough damage or enough time has elapsed, Joker's Persona, Arsene, will be summoned to support Joker.

With Arsene active, Joker's attacks become significantly more powerful. In addition to this, his specials will adopt additional beneficial properties. Though his up special recovery becomes more susceptible to edgeguarding, his specials are mostly improved by Arsene's assistance overall.

While it can be argued that Joker's Arsene is a comeback mechanic, the Persona mechanic is generally something players will have to fend off regardless of whether or not Joker is behind in the match standing or not.

Hero

When players think of Hero in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the terms "luck" and "random number generator" come to mind. Indeed, it sometimes feels like Hero's success during gameplay is reliant on factors that are not always consistent.

Every smash attack has a one in eight chance to strike as a critical hit, which doubles the damage and significantly increases the knockback. With luck on a player's side, Hero can KO opponents at ludicrously low percents.

Hero also has a ton of special moves that can be randomly accessed via his Command Select special. A lot of these abilities would simply be too powerful if they were accessible whenever, so the luck factor is really what holds Hero back from being a super top tier in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.

Banjo-Kazooie

For the most part, Banjo-Kazooie is a fairly standard zoning character. However, they do have one unique mechanic that's tied to their Wonderwing side special.

Wonderwing is an incredibly powerful tool for Banjo-Kazooie, but it can only be used up to five times per stock. If you lose a stock before using up all your Wonderwing charges for that stock, then those charges are lost.

Incorporating Wonderwing is key to making Banjo-Kazooie work during gameplay. Luckily, Banjo-Kazooie has a lot of moves — like the Grenade Egg — that are designed to create setups for Wonderwing.

Finally, Wonderwing also boosts Banjo-Kazooie's already impressive survivability. With the limitations in mind, knowing when to use the special and when to save the charges is generally the only way to succeed with the bear-and-bird duo at high level.

Terry Bogard

Though Terry adopts a lot of other mechanics from fellow fighting game reps Ryu and Ken, Terry also comes with a few tricks of his own. Unlike the Street Fighter characters, Terry gets access to two Super Specials for as long as his damage is exceeding 100%.

The Buster Wolf and Power Geyser are incredibly powerful attacks that offer unique options to Terry, but the player needs to have their execution on point to use them effectively. Terry is very dependent on getting the most out of his "GO" meter as it can be argued that his base moveset isn't as strong as Ryu or Ken's. Unlike those two, Terry doesn't get two types of attacks for each directional tilt.

Byleth

Out of all the DLC characters, Byleth is probably the most standard of the bunch. Though Nintendo did kind of advertise how Byleth will use different types of weapons based on the direction of his attacks, this doesn't really feel like a unique mechanic.

For example, Byleth using the Areadbhar during his forward aerial might as well just be a sword attack. The differences are more thematic than anything else.

Min Min

Min Min is all about her extreme reach. Her dominant neutral is also greatly improved by her ability to move while attacking (like Mega Man), perform airborne smash attacks (like Robin) and her ability to attack with both ARMS at once.

It's also worth mentioning that Min Min effectively functions as a stance character as she can switch between the Dragon ARM, Megawatt ARM and Ramram ARM by using her down special. This causes Min Min to adopt new properties on her attacks while striking with her right ARM.

Finally, Min Min's already powerful throw game is boosted significantly thanks to the left Dragon ARM power up that happens afterwards. Min Min is very much incentivized to perform a throw thanks to this boost.

Steve

Minecraft's Steve is a very resource driven character. After collecting the right resources with his neutral special, he can craft increasingly more powerful weapons that greatly enhance the properties of his attacks.

These resources are also used for building blocks, TNT and the Minecart special. To succeed with Steve in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, the player needs to keep aware of their resources, their equipped weapons and the overall situation. No other character simulates this type of gameplay like Steve does.

Sephiroth

The One-Winged Angel mechanic is completely unique for Sephiroth. Though it might appear like a comeback mechanic at first glance, there are actually downsides to getting access to it too early as a result from falling behind in a match's standing.

Once Sephiroth's wing sprouts, Sephiroth gets a damage boost, a speed multiplier, an extra jump and armored smash attacks. Without the wing, it's generally advised that Sephiroth plays defensively. Once the wing's beneficial effects become active, he can play a more high risk, high reward type of style.

Pyra & Mythra

Though the Pokémon Trainer already functioned as Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's transformation character, Pyra & Mythra's transformation special functions more similar to Zelda & Sheik's transformation from the days of Melee and Brawl.

Mythra functions as the fast character that has amazing frame data, but is lacking in kill options. Pyra, on the other hand, has some super deadly kill options. Her frame data isn't nearly as good as Mythra's, but she can stand on her own in the neutral against most of the cast regardless.

What's next?

The Fighters Pass Vol. 2 seems to be setting a trend of developing characters that can flip between a couple of different playstyles. This is extremely apparently with Min Min, Steve and Pyra & Mythra.

While Sephiroth's One-Winged Angel mechanic is sometimes viewed as a comeback mechanic, players are forced to shift their playstyle once that wing emerges.

Should this trend continue, then we could see another character that has some sort of ability to flip their playstyle during gameplay. This could rely on some sort of stance or resource based system, just like with previous challengers.

Ultimately, we'll just have to wait and see what is unveiled during the E3 2021 Nintendo Direct that's coming on June 15.

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