Unless you’ve been living in a bunker or under a rock for the past few days, you will surely be aware that Steve from Minecraft will be the next videogame character to join the Super Smash Bros Ultimate fighters roster. Some “supposedly safe rumors” scattered before the reveal were hinting at Tracer from Overwatch being almost surely the next fighter to be added, but I’m glad that she won’t be able to bring her “run-shoot-and-blink” gimmicky playstyle to Smash, at least for now, as i already don’t enjoy both playing with and against her on Overwatch or Heroes of the Storm.
Apart from that, the Steve announcement was surely quite a surprise, even though lots of people have been asking for him to join Smash throughout the years (i mean, who hasn’t been requested to be added to smash anyway?), it’s interesting to see that Microsoft has allowed to bring two different characters, with the first being Banjo and Kazooie, to the fighters roster in such a small amount of time, but it also makes sense for both them and Nintendo as Minecraft has already sold more than 2 million copies on the Switch alone, not even counting all the copies sold across all platform and the huge popularity it still has nowadays among gamers of all ages.
I wasn’t that happy knowing that a lot of other characters won’t be added still, like Crash Bandicoot which is a personal favorite of mine, but i figured out that Steve would have been a fine addiction to the roster, even though his moves wouldn’t probably be that amazing or complex, considering the low pool of different actions he has available in Minecraft.
Well, lo and behold, i was completely baffled throughout the whole presentation, which i strongly suggest you to watch, as Masahiro Sakurai showed off the amazing tools (no pun intended) they provided him with.
The amount of research, brainstorming, developing and play-testing is simply insane. The whole character is now probably one of my favorite of all time in a Super Smash Bros game, and he isn’t even out yet (he will be on October 13th). I can already dream of seeing all the pro-players using his kit in the most entertaining ways, whether it will be blocking a side recovery with a wall of blocks, or just combo-ing the minecart side special with the explosion from the TNT down special.
It makes me genuinely happy seeing how Sakurai and his team managed to pull off this incredible feat of perfectly transposing the main character of a sandbox survival game to the fast-paced action-packed brawler that is Super Smash Bros Ultimate, while preserving most of the peculiar abilities and mechanics from Minecraft.
I hope playing as an Enderman (which is one of his alternative skins) will prove as fun as I’ve been depicting it in my mind since the announcement, but either way I’m glad that, in a world of good videogames slaughtered by meaningless tie-ins, microtransactions, season passes and so on, there are still developers who care this much about the quality of their games and the ability for gamers to enjoy their time playing a well-designed and polished product.
I just wished now I was a little bit better Smash player, but even with slow reflexes and a poor decision-making abilities, I still cannot stop having fun playing it.