Fighter’s Pass Vol. 2 Potentially Delayed Due to Coronavirus

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You'll be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t been affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. These last few weeks, countries have begun calling back citizens and closing borders, canceling events as big as March Madness to small local Smash weeklies, panic buying of essential goods like sanitizer and toilet paper, and closure of schools, places of worship, cultural centers, and more have been happening. Social distancing and sudden closures have become the norm and the threat of a global recession looms on the horizon. For many, this pandemic will have long-lasting physical, emotional, and economical issues for years to come. Japan in particular hasn’t been hit as hard as the other countries, but it’s already in an unofficial recession and many companies have started working remotely including Nintendo. Personally, I still report in for work due to lack of COVID-19 cases in my area, but my activity and health are monitored by my employers. This pandemic has obviously affected the gaming industry and gamers as a whole. For many, gaming is a reprieve from the issues and problems of the world but even gaming been impacted by the pandemic. So as Smash fans, we obviously are looking forward to Fighter’s Pass Vol 2 which is set to run during 2020 and into 2021. Recent news has surfaced that Fighter’s Pass Vol 2 could possibly be delayed due to this pandemic.

According to early translations provided by our very own @PushDustIn, Smash director Masahiro Sakurai wrote in the recent Famitsu article that the virus has impacted the development of the Fighter’s Pass Vol. 2 characters.


Mr. Sakurai went on to explain that plans to present at least one of the fighters to publishers has since been suspended. While Fighter #6 is currently unknown, the early translations suggest that the new fighter might be revealed as planned, but there won’t be any further development done during the pandemic. This is potentially due to the office working remotely and a reduction of staff to only essential workers in the studio. Additionally, the early translations went on to say that Mr. Sakurai states if one person were found with the virus, the whole building would be closed and development would fully be suspended.

This virus has greatly affected the video game industry most notably by causing the cancellation of this year's E3 in June. Midnight releases of Doom Eternal and Animal Crossing New Horizons have also been cancelled. This also greatly impacts gaming studios whose staff typically work in enclosed spaces which is a prime virus-spreading territory. Mr. Sakurai didn’t explicitly state the Fighters Pass Vol 2 will be delayed, but the fact that development on it will be severely impacted could imply a potential delay. There also has been notable concern over Mr. Sakurai’s personal health, as he has suffered from various issues during the development of Smash for Wii U/3DS and Ultimate. In 2014-15, he suffered calcific tendinitis which negatively affected his ability to work. More recently, he had a bout of food poisoning in which he worked while using IV and also passed out while exercising at a gym just several weeks ago.

This is just an early translation of a leak of the Famitsu article. The full translation will be appended to this article once it's published. The Smashboards Staff would like to take this time to express our hope that everyone stays healthy and safe during this period. Please exercise caution and observe quarantine protocols in your area. Your health and that of others are more important than Smash, so please stay vigilant.

Author’s Note: How has this pandemic impacted you? It’s certainly a scary time, and the uncertainty of the upcoming months puts everyone on edge. Please take care of your health and observe social distancing and proper hygiene behavior. We all hope the best for the Smash Ultimate development team and Masahiro Sakurai.
 
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Venus of the Desert Bloom

Comments

#4
It sounds like they we're going to present information about a potential fighter to someone making a deal to get that finalized for Fighter Pass 2 but it got delayed I hope they'll be able to resume talks and get the Fighter in.


Please take all the time you need Sakurai and team stay strong and we'll wait for the characters whenever they drop.
If they said they already finalized the characters in November, as well as already putting the pass out for purchase, would that be them shooting themselves in the foot?
 
#11
Well, I only wish good health for Sakurai and the other crew.

I was already gonna be impatient with having to wait longer for more DLC, but now I'm willing to let his health be the priority, even if FP Vol. 2 goes into 2022.
 
#14
I know it’s not how Nintendo operates but rather than delay, I wish they’d use us as play testing for balance.
 
#17
With all the ongoing situation regarding to the coronavirus, it does make sense to postpone and delay this as well as all already know that health and safety is a top priority right now.

Let's all remain patient for now, lets work together to stop the coronavirus from spreading even further.
 
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#18
I can't say I'm surprised to hear this. Sucks. No other way to put it; it just sucks.

Development can technically still be done at home if the company chooses to allow their departments to do so. But there's other factors at play here too -- for starters, paying someone in a financially difficult time is scary. Seems like his main concern is the development of new fighters though which has to be secretive by nature.

I guess there's simply no way to remain secretive when you let programmers work at home -- leaks would happen almost instantly.

I also wouldn't be surprised if Sakurai is part of the "at risk" group given his health scares in the past, which is even more reason for him to remain at home safe.

Hopefully this blows over soon. As long as we continue practicing social distancing -- should be easy for a bunch of video game nerds like us ;) -- we should hopefully see this thing blow over. Don't be one of those a-holes going to the beach in Florida, or wherever you live; it's simply not worth the risk to your loved ones.
 
#19
...Alright, I'm gonna say it: this whole Corona thing is no excuse to want all of Sakurai and the team's hard work to get flushed down the toilet. I know whoever's in the next pass won't be for everyone, but still.
I have no sympathy whatsoever for their "hard work". They're not doing this out of the goodness of their heart. They get paid either way. Sakurai is paid by the hour. He and the rest of the team don't see a penny of the game's gross profits, Nintendo pays them a salary and that's it.

Game industry jobs always toss months of work in the trash, it happens way more often than one would expect. Not necessarily expecting it to happen here but it does happen. Lord knows it's happened to me so many times.

I'm very jaded, Smash was a mistake and I only really come here to speak about retro games with interested people. I am beyond done with Smash.
 
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#20
I have no sympathy whatsoever for their "hard work". They're not doing this out of the goodness of their heart. They get paid either way. Sakurai is paid by the hour. He and the rest of the team don't see a penny of the game's gross profits, Nintendo pays them a salary and that's it.

Game industry jobs always toss months of work in the trash, it happens way more often than one would expect. Not necessarily expecting it to happen here but it does happen. Lord knows it's happened to me so many times.

I'm very jaded, Smash was a mistake and I only really come here to speak about retro games with interested people. I am beyond done with Smash.
Do you really just think all people work without a single care for the product they provide, only thinking about how much they hate their 9-to-5 job, feeling like their slaving away in front of a computer all day, with their only incentive being a paycheck? People develop games to express their passion. What kind of artist says, "Yeah well, I could care less for it, it pays my bills anyways" No. Clearly to be a creator you have to have a passion for what you do. Sakurai's health conditions clearly outline the amount of dedication and passion that he has for his project. If he wasn't doing it out of the goodness of his heart, he and his team wouldn't have gone to great lengths to accomplish all that been done. I hope I don't have to tell you that just because it doesn't suit your definition of what a good game is, doesn't mean that hard work and dedication hasn't gone into this product. You don't have to like smash, but you've gotta be absolutely ignorant out of your mind to claim that their was no passion involved in this. Speaking of which, this is probably one of the most ignorant posts I've ever seen on this board.
 
#21
Do you really just think all people work without a single care for the product they provide, only thinking about how much they hate their 9-to-5 job, feeling like their slaving away in front of a computer all day, with their only incentive being a paycheck? People develop games to express their passion. What kind of artist says, "Yeah well, I could care less for it, it pays my bills anyways" No. Clearly to be a creator you have to have a passion for what you do. Sakurai's health conditions clearly outline the amount of dedication and passion that he has for his project. If he wasn't doing it out of the goodness of his heart, he and his team wouldn't have gone to great lengths to accomplish all that been done. I hope I don't have to tell you that just because it doesn't suit your definition of what a good game is, doesn't mean that hard work and dedication hasn't gone into this product. You don't have to like smash, but you've gotta be absolutely ignorant out of your mind to claim that their was no passion involved in this. Speaking of which, this is probably one of the most ignorant posts I've ever seen on this board.
I hate to break your silly little "Sakurai is a holy saint doing this out of the goodness of his heart" fantasy but none of what Sakurai is doing is in ANY way abnormal for AAA or even AA gamedev, especially in Japan where there is a culture of working themselves to death regardless of whatever game company you work for. Konami landed in a lot of trouble for overworking their employees, and the same thing is happening at Capcom, at Square-Enix, and a million other game studios. Sakurai was given this job because SOMEONE at their company had to do it, and if he had been busy that day it would've gone to anyone else, because Nintendo doesn't care who's doing it, they just want it done. None of what he does is special, and everyone at his level of gamedev is overworked, it happens both in Japan and in America (google horror stories of gamedev crunch time if you don't believe me). Gamedev is a grueling and taxing process regardless of whatever it is you're trying to make. Even people who made ****ty games like Duke Nukem Forever had pulled long and difficult hours on them. Are you supposing that they lacked passion just because the game they made turned out to be crap? Everyone has passion in the game industry, no one receives special consideration for it because that is just the nature of gamedev in general. Sakurai does not deserve any props for doing what is his job and what he is paid to do. He does however get nothing but my disrespect for sewing seeds of discontent and grief within the community with his constant trolling, ensuring that absolutely no one in the Smash community respects each other unless they're agreeing with each other, because HE doesn't even respect the Smash community. So if he doesn't then what hope is there of finding any respect within it?

Appropriate that you punctuate your post with "this is one of the most ignorant posts I've ever seen on this board" because that perfectly describes my feeling after reading yours.
 
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#22
I hate to break your silly little "Sakurai is a holy saint doing this out of the goodness of his heart" fantasy but none of what Sakurai is doing is in ANY way abnormal for AAA or even AA gamedev, especially in Japan where there is a culture of working themselves to death regardless of whatever game company you work for. Konami landed in a lot of trouble for overworking their employees, and the same thing is happening at Capcom, at Square-Enix, and a million other game studios. Sakurai was given this job because SOMEONE at their company had to do it, and if he had been busy that day it would've gone to anyone else, because Nintendo doesn't care who's doing it, they just want it done. None of what he does is special, and everyone at his level of gamedev is overworked, it happens both in Japan and in America (google horror stories of gamedev crunch time if you don't believe me). Gamedev is a grueling and taxing process regardless of whatever it is you're trying to make. Even people who made ****ty games like Duke Nukem Forever had pulled long and difficult hours on them. Are you supposing that they lacked passion just because the game they made turned out to be crap? Everyone has passion in the game industry, no one receives special consideration for it because that is just the nature of gamedev in general. Sakurai does not deserve any props for doing what is his job and what he is paid to do. He does however get nothing but my disrespect for sewing seeds of discontent and grief within the community with his constant trolling, ensuring that absolutely no one in the Smash community respects each other unless they're agreeing with each other, because HE doesn't even respect the Smash community. So if he doesn't then what hope is there of finding any respect within it?

Appropriate that you punctuate your post with "this is one of the most ignorant posts I've ever seen on this board" because that perfectly describes my feeling after reading yours.
Okay, this seriously needs to stop.

I feel like I directly started it by saying Corona was no excuse for the devs to throw away their hard work. I take full responsibility for derailing this thread into a heated argument.
 
#25
I hate to break your silly little "Sakurai is a holy saint doing this out of the goodness of his heart" fantasy but none of what Sakurai is doing is in ANY way abnormal for AAA or even AA gamedev, especially in Japan where there is a culture of working themselves to death regardless of whatever game company you work for. Konami landed in a lot of trouble for overworking their employees, and the same thing is happening at Capcom, at Square-Enix, and a million other game studios. Sakurai was given this job because SOMEONE at their company had to do it, and if he had been busy that day it would've gone to anyone else, because Nintendo doesn't care who's doing it, they just want it done. None of what he does is special, and everyone at his level of gamedev is overworked, it happens both in Japan and in America (google horror stories of gamedev crunch time if you don't believe me). Gamedev is a grueling and taxing process regardless of whatever it is you're trying to make. Even people who made ****ty games like Duke Nukem Forever had pulled long and difficult hours on them. Are you supposing that they lacked passion just because the game they made turned out to be crap? Everyone has passion in the game industry, no one receives special consideration for it because that is just the nature of gamedev in general. Sakurai does not deserve any props for doing what is his job and what he is paid to do. He does however get nothing but my disrespect for sewing seeds of discontent and grief within the community with his constant trolling, ensuring that absolutely no one in the Smash community respects each other unless they're agreeing with each other, because HE doesn't even respect the Smash community. So if he doesn't then what hope is there of finding any respect within it?

Appropriate that you punctuate your post with "this is one of the most ignorant posts I've ever seen on this board" because that perfectly describes my feeling after reading yours.
That is interesting and all, but what does that have to do with wanting the Fighter Pass 2 to be cancelled? If you are done with Smash, what do you gain from that possible scenario?
It just comes off as unnecessarily petty and childish. If you've no interest in the game, the mature thing to do would have been to move on but you went out of your way to an article talking about the situation with the Corona Virus delaying DLC development to let people know how resentful you are and then wishing for it to be cancelled out of spite.
 
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#26
I would like to mention that Japan is not in the same situation as in the States, Italy, Spain, etc. Low infection numbers and an apparent lack of notable spreading among the population has led many into a watchful peace. The government had put containment and management protocol into affect but we are not in full lockdown and there isn’t any “stay at home” order - even in Tokyo. Even Kyoto, where Sakurai works irc, has only 22 known cases. My prefecture, Gunma, has 12, and Tokyo (2 hours south of me) has 136. Hokkaido is the worst hit and that’s 159. From what I can tell, the government is close to saying “Yep! Japan is virus free!” But I imagine that’s to not cancel or postpone the Olympics.

While some high-profile companies are working remotely as a precaution, it’s certainly not the standard and most companies and government offices are having workers come in. I’m a low-tier English teacher but I still come in to do really nothing. I prep for the next year and that’s it.

That being said, reading through the Famitsu article, I think the “delay” could be attributed to multiple reasons:

Downsizing of in-house employees to essential staff to avoid bringing in the infection.

Japan is big on going to locations to conduct meetings rather through wireless networks or video. I imagine Sakurai and his entourage often go to game studios for meetings and proposals. This would be affected by company-wide orders about traveling. Especially if overseas. I would foresee any western character being included negatively due to this.

Sakurai is probably personally being monitored for his health not only due to past health Issues but due to his importance in Nintendo.

I do question about the building getting shut down if the virus is found. A city hall in Yamanashi prefecture was found to have someone infected by it and, they closed that particular department, checked the workers that worked with him, and gave those who tested negatively a new office to work in. But they didn’t close down the city hall. That being said, Nintendo is a company and a city hall is considered essential so perhaps there are different procedures.

I think Sakurai is generalizing more saying that the virus won’t fully delay the Fighter’s Pass currently but there is a possibility that it could be delayed because of the virus due to a lack of development resources and staff as well as possible temporary closure of the building.
 
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#27
This post was warned for trolling. To the user who this post quoted, please refrain from replying in the comment section or, if you need to, take it to the PMs. - Venus
That is interesting and all, but what does that have to do with wanting the Fighter Pass 2 to be cancelled? If you are done with Smash, what do you gain from that possible scenario?
It just comes off as unnecessarily petty and childish. If you've no interest in the game, the mature thing to do would have been to move on but you went out of your way to an article talking about the situation with the Corona Virus delaying DLC development to let people know how resentful you are and then wishing for it to be cancelled out of spite.
A guy who wants more characters in a video game designed for children is attempting to highroad me about being mature. lol

I don't know if you've noticed but Smash has a much larger presence than just being within the confines of a Smash-related community like this. Part of the reason I want it to be cancelled is because I am in a situation where I am unable to escape talking or hearing about Smash due to my peers. Human interaction is not really this cut and dry as you proclaim it to be. You can't just "not hear" about something or ignore it. This is a perfect example, try ignoring all news about COVID-19 for the next week or so. I think you'll find that you can't. One or more of your peers will inevitably bring it up. Information dissemination is not really something you can wash your hands of unless it's eliminated at the source. And as Smash news not only easily perpetuates within my peer group but also has the unfortunate side effect of making me miserable, giving me a feeling like Sideshow Bob walking into a rake every time it's mentioned, I think it's easy to see why I want it cancelled. I know that's selfish, and I really don't care. But please do feel free to propose some ridiculous and impractical non-solution to my problem in a smarmy know-it-all tone of voice, like "dude just stop having friends lol" or "stop having reactions to things lol".
 
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#28
I’ve allowed the discussion to continue as I believe being lenient and allowing different viewpoints to be voiced in the comments section but I feel this has gone far enough and has veered torwards taking potshots and making edgy comments for shock value. I’m cutting it here and now and continued replies within this discussion will be treated as spam, trolling, flaming, or whatever that applies given the circumstances. Continued discussion regarding this will result in further warnings for any parties involved.
 
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#30
A guy who wants more characters in a video game designed for children is attempting to highroad me about being mature. lol

I don't know if you've noticed but Smash has a much larger presence than just being within the confines of a Smash-related community like this. Part of the reason I want it to be cancelled is because I am in a situation where I am unable to escape talking or hearing about Smash due to my peers. Human interaction is not really this cut and dry as you proclaim it to be. You can't just "not hear" about something or ignore it. This is a perfect example, try ignoring all news about COVID-19 for the next week or so. I think you'll find that you can't. One or more of your peers will inevitably bring it up. Information dissemination is not really something you can wash your hands of unless it's eliminated at the source. And as Smash news not only easily perpetuates within my peer group but also has the unfortunate side effect of making me miserable, giving me a feeling like Sideshow Bob walking into a rake every time it's mentioned, I think it's easy to see why I want it cancelled. I know that's selfish, and I really don't care. But please do feel free to propose some ridiculous and impractical non-solution to my problem in a smarmy know-it-all tone of voice, like "dude just stop having friends lol" or "stop having reactions to things lol".
I didn't take you for being some kind of discount troll. If any topic about a video game discussed with your peers is making you miserable and causing you to feel some kind of violent intent towards them, then you clearly have some bigger issues that need to be sorted out with yourself. When you are being more childish than the guy who wants more characters in a video game designed for children, that really doesn't speak better about you. I won't tell you to stop having friends anyways, because you sound unpleasant and unreasonable enough that it's only a matter of time until you lose them. And if you think exercising self control and not having a meltdown or a extreme reaction to a subject like this is an impractical and ridiculous "non-solution", then you are not as bright as you think you are, little man.
 
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#31
A guy who wants more characters in a video game designed for children is attempting to highroad me about being mature. lol

I don't know if you've noticed but Smash has a much larger presence than just being within the confines of a Smash-related community like this. Part of the reason I want it to be cancelled is because I am in a situation where I am unable to escape talking or hearing about Smash due to my peers... and as Smash news not only easily perpetuates within my peer group but also has the unfortunate side effect of making me miserable, giving me a feeling like Sideshow Bob walking into a rake every time it's mentioned, I think it's easy to see why I want it cancelled.
Then GTFO of Smashboards.
 
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#32
View attachment 266129

You'll be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t been affected by the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. These last few weeks, countries have begun calling back citizens and closing borders, canceling events as big as March Madness to small local Smash weeklies, panic buying of essential goods like sanitizer and toilet paper, and closure of schools, places of worship, cultural centers, and more have been happening. Social distancing and sudden closures have become the norm and the threat of a global recession looms on the horizon. For many, this pandemic will have long-lasting physical, emotional, and economical issues for years to come. Japan in particular hasn’t been hit as hard as the other countries, but it’s already in an unofficial recession and many companies have started working remotely including Nintendo. Personally, I still report in for work due to lack of COVID-19 cases in my area, but my activity and health are monitored by my employers. This pandemic has obviously affected the gaming industry and gamers as a whole. For many, gaming is a reprieve from the issues and problems of the world but even gaming been impacted by the pandemic. So as Smash fans, we obviously are looking forward to Fighter’s Pass Vol 2 which is set to run during 2020 and into 2021. Recent news has surfaced that Fighter’s Pass Vol 2 could possibly be delayed due to this pandemic.

According to early translations provided by our very own @PushDustIn, Smash director Masahiro Sakurai wrote in the recent Famitsu article that the virus has impacted the development of the Fighter’s Pass Vol. 2 characters.


Mr. Sakurai went on to explain that plans to present at least one of the fighters to publishers has since been suspended. While Fighter #6 is currently unknown, the early translations suggest that the new fighter might be revealed as planned, but there won’t be any further development done during the pandemic. This is potentially due to the office working remotely and a reduction of staff to only essential workers in the studio. Additionally, the early translations went on to say that Mr. Sakurai states if one person were found with the virus, the whole building would be closed and development would fully be suspended.

This virus has greatly affected the video game industry most notably by causing the cancellation of this year's E3 in June. Midnight releases of Doom Eternal and Animal Crossing New Horizons have also been cancelled. This also greatly impacts gaming studios whose staff typically work in enclosed spaces which is a prime virus-spreading territory. Mr. Sakurai didn’t explicitly state the Fighters Pass Vol 2 will be delayed, but the fact that development on it will be severely impacted could imply a potential delay. There also has been notable concern over Mr. Sakurai’s personal health, as he has suffered from various issues during the development of Smash for Wii U/3DS and Ultimate. In 2014-15, he suffered calcific tendinitis which negatively affected his ability to work. More recently, he had a bout of food poisoning in which he worked while using IV and also passed out while exercising at a gym just several weeks ago.

This is just an early translation of a leak of the Famitsu article. The full translation will be appended to this article once it's published. The Smashboards Staff would like to take this time to express our hope that everyone stays healthy and safe during this period. Please exercise caution and observe quarantine protocols in your area. Your health and that of others are more important than Smash, so please stay vigilant.

Author’s Note: How has this pandemic impacted you? It’s certainly a scary time, and the uncertainty of the upcoming months puts everyone on edge. Please take care of your health and observe social distancing and proper hygiene behavior. We all hope the best for the Smash Ultimate development team and Masahiro Sakurai.
I'm assuming none of the employees tested positive for Coronavirus because we now know where FP6 will be from.
 
#33
I feel like we would have gotten FP6 by now, but they're delaying things due to Coronavirus concerns. And I'm fine with that. The health of the employees is what matters above all else. I hope everyone stays safe and healthy!
 
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