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Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (大乱闘スマッシュブラザーズ SPECIAL Dai rantō Sumasshu Burazāzu Supesharu?, Great Fray Smash Brothers Special), tentatively titled Super Smash Bros. is a fighting game for the Nintendo Switch, released worldwide on December 7, 2018.

A surprise announcement at the end of the March 8th, 2018 Nintendo Direct, it is the fifth installment in the Super Smash Bros. series. The game was released in December 2018, a little more than four years after its predecessors, Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U. It features the return of every character that has ever been playable in the series, including Samus and Zero Suit Samus, as well as fighters cut in subsequent installments such as Pichu, Young Link, the Ice Climbers, and Snake.

It also features Ridley and Dark Samus as playable characters for the first time in the series' history, following years of fan requests dating back to Super Smash Bros. Melee and Brawl.

Metroid content[]

Samus and Zero Suit Samus both still resemble their appearances in Metroid: Other M, albeit with modifications. Samus's Charge Shot can now be charged and cancelled in midair, while Zero Suit Samus's Final Smash still involves the Gunship, but she now stands atop it in her Power Suit and fires the Zero Laser.

The Metroid and Mother Brain Assist Trophies return, as do the Brinstar, Brinstar Depths, Norfair and Frigate Orpheon stages. This marks the return of Brinstar Depths after a seventeen year absence. Given Ridley's playability, the Pyrosphere stage does not return. Ditto, a Pokémon, is capable of copying Metroid fighters to assist them in battle.

A brand new metal remix of Brinstar Depths, arranged by Yasushi Asada, was one of three tracks revealed on the game's website on June 12, 2018. The previous Melee version is still present, but a new remix of Vs. Parasite Queen has replaced the original version from Metroid Prime. Newly introduced songs include Main Theme (from Metroid Prime: Federation Force) and Magmoor Caverns (from Metroid: Samus Returns), both confirmed in the August 8, 2018 Direct, as well as Boss Battle 4 and End Results from Samus Returns. This brings the total number of Metroid series music tracks to 25. With the exception of the original Vs. Parasite Queen, all Metroid songs featured in previous Super Smash Bros. games return in Ultimate, marking the first time Planet Zebes Stage has been featured since the first game.

All amiibo released for the fighters with the previous game will be compatible with Ultimate as well. Additionally, new fighters (including Ridley and Dark Samus) will receive amiibo, with Ridley's coming on the same day as the game's release.


Metroid character SSBU icons

Metroid character stock icons.

Bolded characters are newcomers. The game will feature fewer newcomers than its predecessors, due to the inclusion of all 65 veteran fighters in the history of the series. The game also introduces the term "Echo Fighters", previously fan-dubbed "clones", which refers to fighters whose movesets have been copied from another fighter. These fighters are marked with an epsilon (ε) symbol. With the introduction of Ridley and Dark Samus, Ultimate has the most Metroid characters out of any game in the Super Smash Bros. series.

Five DLC packs, each coming with a new character, were announced as going into development between the game's release date and February 2020. The first five confirmed characters were Joker from Persona 5, the Hero from Dragon Quest, Banjo and Kazooie from the series of the same name, Terry Bogard from Fatal Fury and Byleth from Fire Emblem: Three Houses. None of these would be Echo Fighters, and Piranha Plant is a sixth downloadable character who was released before the Fighter Pass characters.

It was announced during the Nintendo Direct on September 4, 2019 that more fighters are in development. On January 16, 2020, it was confirmed that six more fighters would be released as part of a second Fighter Pass by January 31, 2021. On March 26, 2020, the first fighter in the second Pass was revealed to be an unspecified character from ARMS, who was revealed on June 22 as Min Min. She was released on June 29. On October 1, 2020, the second fighter was revealed as Steve, Alex, Zombie, and Enderman from Minecraft, who was released on October 13.

The ending of the original trailer depicted the Smash Bros. symbol formed out of fire in midair, with a number of silhouetted characters at its base. The Inkling was seen gazing at these characters. Mario and Link, using his appearance from The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, were prominently displayed. Samus's shoulders, Bowser's horns and hair, and Donkey Kong's hair were clearly visible, but the other characters were less clear.


Main article: Spirit
SSBU Spirits Website

Young Samus and Mecha Ridley Spirits on the Ultimate website

The new Spirits mode enables "Spirit" assist characters to be assigned to a specific character. They tie into a new adventure mode titled World of Light, in which every fighter except Kirby has been turned into a Puppet Fighter, possessed by the Spirit of a non-playable character. Spirits can be earned by defeating Puppet Fighters who are relevant to a specific Spirit in some way; for example, Shantae (a female ponytailed character in a racy outfit, from a series in the Metroidvania genre) is unlocked by fighting Zero Suit Samus in her orange Casual Outfit alternate costume.

The following Metroid Spirits are included in Ultimate, with artwork taken from their respective games. Note that the Metroid Dread spirits are not included in the base game and were later added in a Spirit Board Event.

Allusions to the Metroid series[]

Samus and Ridley Classic Mode artwork

Classic Mode artwork, including Samus and Ridley.

SSBU Dark Samus Classic Mode portrait

Dark Samus in the same artwork.

  • The zoom-in on Samus's eyes in a panicked state when knocked off her feet when Ridley ambushes her in the beginning of A Piercing Screech, Ridley's debut trailer, may have been a reference to Samus's posttraumatic stress disorder episode from encountering Ridley in the Metroid manga, or his clone in Metroid: Other M.
    • The overall scene, such as Ridley's reflection appearing on Samus's visor, as well as his entrance animation and the timing where Vs. Ridley starts up, also resembles his pre-battle entrance cutscene in Metroid: Zero Mission.
    • In the same scene, Ridley is shown twirling Mario's hat and giving a dirty grin, alluding to how the Metroid manga expanded his characterization to give him a very dark sense of humor.
    • During the gameplay aspects of the trailer, Ridley is seen getting absorbed by a Metroid Assist Trophy that was presumably sent out by Pikachu, which most likely referenced how the Baby saved Samus by absorbing some of Ridley's energy in Metroid: Samus Returns, and to a lesser extent how Ridley's clone was ambushed by the Queen Metroid in Metroid: Other M. Coincidentally, Pikachu also saved Samus from Ridley in a similar manner in Brawl during the Subspace Emissiary story mode. In addition, the beginning of the gameplay aspect has Ridley landing and then roaring while flapping his wings, which was similar to both his intro in both of his fights in Super Metroid and Neo-Ridley's intro in Metroid Fusion.
    • How Ridley dispatched of Mario by crushing his head resembled how Samus, in her PTSD episode upon seeing Ridley for the first time, hallucinated her parents heads being crushed by him.
    • His impaling Mega Man with his tail resembled how he mortally wounded Grey Voice in the manga.
  • Ridley's Plasma Breath resembles the wave-based fire attacks Ridley used in the original Metroid.
  • Ridley's Space Pirate Rush resembles one of his attacks in Metroid: Other M where he grabs Samus, slams her against a wall, and then drags her across it, which was in turn based on a maneuver Ridley pulled on Samus when ambushing her in Adventure Mode: The Subspace Emissary.
  • His Skewer, in particular the impalement portion of it, resembles how he mortally wounded Grey Voice in the manga.
  • When undergoing his final smash, Plasma Scream, Ridley's pose when entering the final smash and later when actually using it resembles his pose on the Super Metroid box art.
    • The energy beam portion of the attack resembles both the Kinetic Breath Weapon attack he used as Meta Ridley in Metroid Prime, as well as a similar beam attack that he utilized in two different instances in the Magazine Z prequel manga (the first just before Ridley's ship fell on top of him, and the second when finishing off Grey Voice).
  • Samus's pose in her artwork for Ultimate matches her stance in a promotional render for Other M with Anthony Higgs.
  • Dark Samus's debut trailer had a few allusions to the Prime series:
    • Dark Samus's entry had her emerging from a blue wormhole in darkness before the darkness fades away, which refers to her resurrection in the 100% ending of Metroid Prime 2: Echoes, her appearance in the beginning of Metroid Prime 3: Corruption, and her use of Leviathans in the same game.
    • Dark Samus stands near a Metroid, an indirect allusion to how she was formerly Metroid Prime.
    • Dark Samus at one point appears alongside Ridley and Assist Trophies of Mother Brain and a Metroid, which alluded to how she had controlled Metroids, Meta Ridley/Omega Ridley, and Aurora Unit 313 (who is similar to Mother Brain in appearance).
    • Samus briefly is seen fighting both Meta Ridley and Dark Samus at one point.
  • One of Dark Samus's victory poses alluded to her creation of Dark Echoes in Metroid Prime 3: Corruption.
    • In addition, the same pose also had her adopting Samus's pose in her stock art for the game (see above).
    • Another of Dark Samus's victory poses referenced the SA-X's debut scene in Metroid Fusion.
  • Due to Dark Samus becoming a fighter in her own right, Samus's alternate costume based on her has been removed from Ultimate, and replaced with a black and yellow color scheme resembling a Power Trooper.
  • Dark Samus being the puppet fighter housing Mother Brain's spirit in World of Light is most likely a reference to her possession of Aurora Unit 313.


  • Ultimate is the first Super Smash Bros. game since the original Nintendo 64 title to not have collectible Trophies.
    • It is also the first Super Smash Bros. game since the original N64 title to have only one type of mode congratulations screen per character accessible (via Classic Mode), not counting World of Light
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game since the original Super Smash Bros to feature hand-drawn artwork on the box art.
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game to not feature the involvement of Satoru Iwata, as he passed away on July 2015.
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game to have no veteran characters cut since Melee.
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game have both the English announcer and voice actor of Master Hand and Crazy Hand unchanged, with Xander Mobus reprising his role from Super Smash Bros. 4.
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game to have a lyricized theme song in both English and Japanese.
  • This is the first Super Smash Bros. game to be released in the same year it was announced since Melee.


For artwork, see Super Smash Bros. Ultimate/Gallery.




  1. ^ 大乱闘スマッシュブラザーズ【スマブラ公式】 (SmashBrosJP). "【きょうの一枚】5月10日は母の日。きびしくてやさしいお母さん、いつもありがとう。#スマブラSP #スマブラ画 #母の日" May 9, 2020 7:00 p.m. Tweet.
  2. ^ 桜井 政博 / Masahiro Sakurai (Sora_Sakurai). "1994年のきょう『SUPER METROID』発売!! サムス、クレイド、リドリー、スターシップなどのデザインにおいて、スマブラに与えた影響が大きい作品です。 リドリーは、ゲーム中とイメージイラストで色の印象が異なりますが、3Pカラーはイラストに寄せて赤くなっています。 #スマブラSP" 18 March 2021 11:00 p.m. Tweet.
  3. ^ Sakurai, Masahiro (Sora_Sakurai). "2004年のきょう『メトロイド ゼロミッション』(Metroid: Zero Mission)発売!! 一作目のリメイク作品ですが、ゼロスーツサムスが現在の形で初登場します。 その呼び名は『スマブラX』登場時に決まりました。本来ゼロスーツサムスは強いものではなく、逃げたり隠れたりするのが主体。 #スマブラSP" 27 May 2021 2:00 a.m. Tweet.
  4. ^ Sakurai, Masahiro (Sora_Sakurai). "2005年のきょう『メトロイドプライム2 ダークエコーズ』(Metroid Prime 2: Echoes)日本で発売!! 海外は半年ほど前。 ダークサムスが現在の姿で初登場した作品。Echoはサムスとダークサムスの関係を比喩してますね。 なおスマブラのダッシュファイターは、海外ではEcho Fighterと言います。 #スマブラSP" 25 May 2021 11:00 p.m. Tweet.
  5. ^ Sakurai, Masahiro (Sora_Sakurai). "『スマブラSP』スタッフから、誕生日を祝ってもらいました。なんと、シリーズマークのマカロンが揃ったケーキ!私は、『ドラクエ』マークをいただきました。ありがたいことです。" (Translation: "The staff of Smash Ultimate celebrated my birthday with this cake. They even had macaron with the various Smash series emblems on them! I ate the one with the Dragon Quest emblem on it. Thank you (for the cake!)") Aug 5, 2019 1:25 a.m. Tweet.