• Welcome to Smashboards, the world's largest Super Smash Brothers community! Over 250,000 Smash Bros. fans from around the world have come to discuss these great games in over 19 million posts!

    You are currently viewing our boards as a visitor. Click here to sign up right now and start on your path in the Smash community!

Masahiro Sakurai Looks Back at Smash Character Reveal Trailers


Nintendo recently posted an article where Masahiro Sakurai, the creator of Super Smash Bros., shared his thoughts on some Smash character reveal trailers. The article is part one of a series, and this time the trailers discussed are all from Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. for Wii-U.

Here’s what Mr. Sakurai had to say:

Mr. Sakurai said:
I’m the director of the Super Smash Bros. series, Masahiro Sakurai.
The Super Smash Bros. series is a project where we undertake collaborations you can’t see anywhere else. We wanted to use that opportunity and create nice content that people could enjoy, and that’s why we started making the fighter reveal videos.

It was a lot of work to make the videos while working on the game at the same time, but there were always big reactions from fans, so it was worth the effort. In this article, I’ll give some brief commentary as we go, so I hope you’ll enjoy looking back over all these videos.

Please take this opportunity to reflect on the history of Super Smash Bros. by watching the scenes where each new fighter first appeared.

You may have seen some of the videos before, but they are well worth another look!

Mr. Sakurai said:
The Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U games were announced at E3 2013. Strictly speaking, this isn’t a fighter reveal video. However, when the new fighter, Villager, appears it does have the classic “Villager Comes to Town” part. The video was made by Digital Media Lab. They were involved in around half of the videos for Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.

Mr. Sakurai said:
This is the first official fighter reveal video. That said, the announcement was the same day as Trailer 1. Considering it’s the first video, it came together well! This was made by Digital Frontier. They worked on many reveal videos after this, until the release of the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate game.

Mr. Sakurai said:
This was also released on almost the same day as Trailer 1. It was shown as a surprise during E3 2013. This trick of making it look like it would be a new version of Wii Fit before revealing the surprise is one that we would continue to use a number of times. Getting Mario holding his hands up over his head was kind of tricky to pull off.

Mr. Sakurai said:
This reveal video is kind of like a race, with Kirby Air Ride vs. Mario Kart. It kind of has the feeling of a fight outside the ring.
The mysterious sparkle in Rosalina’s eye is an extension of the things that she does within the Super Smash Bros. series. It’s inspired by how Rosalina is an alien, with her background being a bit different.

Mr. Sakurai said:
For this one we tried changing the style, to make it seem like it’s from a comic book. It was partly just to save budget, but it has good pacing and gives a good impression of Little Mac’s strict training attitude, so I think it worked well. The arcade machine at the beginning is inspired by the original Punch-Out!! arcade game. Even back then, Nintendo used two screens a lot.

Mr. Sakurai said:
This is a simultaneous reveal of Charizard, who was already in the Super Smash Bros. Brawl game, and the new fighter, Greninja.
The key challenge was how to show all of those Pokémon at the beginning. The video is fast and dynamic – this is because I was trying to release fighter reveal videos quickly, at a fast pace. The people who made the video even told me that I wanted it twice as fast as it needed to be!

Mr. Sakurai said:
We had a number of companies make animated videos as part of the promotion for Kid Icarus: Uprising. We asked Shaft, who made the Palutena video, to make another animation for this. She talks a lot in the in-game part, because that’s what she’s like in Kid Icarus: Uprising too.

Dark Pit appears at the end, but at the time of the announcement it was still a secret that you would be able to use him as a fighter.

Mr. Sakurai said:
Pac-Man was the new fighter announced as a surprise at an E3 2014 roundtable event. This isn’t a normal CG movie – it was made mainly as an in-house production by the BANDAI NAMCO Studios’ Super Smash Bros. team. I’ll never forget the cheers when the mouth opened on that yellow circle.

Mr. Sakurai said:
I realized something. I really like it in stories when help comes at just the right time. I’m also a fan of people appearing from high places. Robin’s reveal video is packed with this kind of thing. We asked Anima to make this video, to match the in-game cutscenes in the Fire Emblem™: Awakening game.

Mr. Sakurai said:
We always think carefully about the point in the reveal video when fans will realize what it is. In this video, fans will realize from the very first scene that it’s Gaur Plain, and that Shulk will be joining the battle. I thought it would be good that way.

This video is also notable for having so many references to things that appear in the original and in the Super Smash Bros. series, like visions, changing Monado Arts, and Metal Face.

Mr. Sakurai said:
Bowser Jr. is normally a cute (or maybe unlikeable?) character. But for this reveal video, we presented him in a cool way, with a proper villain role. I like the feeling of despair and the two sides clashing together at the end, too. However, because of this we had to refine all seven Koopalings in CG, and the video cost more to make than expected.

Mr. Sakurai said:
The game footage from Duck Hunt at the beginning isn’t from an original Nintendo Entertainment System™ console, but something new we made. I like the feel of the pacing in the first part of the in-game section, with it overlapping with the music. The light gun accessory that appears in the video is the NES Zapper™, the light gun accessory for the NES. The concept for Duck Hunt Duo’s Smash attack is that the shots are coming from outside of the screen, so I’m glad we could explain it here.

Mr. Sakurai said:
Now we are moving on to the Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Super Smash Bros. for Wii U DLC fighters. For the DLC fighters we didn’t make CG videos, they’re all made in-game with a bit extra work.

Mewtwo had already been announced elsewhere, so we made this first one rather straightforward. Mewtwo was also an early purchase bonus.

Mr. Sakurai said:
It starts off with Ness getting attacked, and then Lucas coming to the rescue. We did this because I wanted to do the reverse of what happened in the Subspace Emissary mode in the Super Smash Bros. Brawl game. The scenes of Ness getting beaten up go on a bit long, but this is because of the length of the music they had to be matched with. We put a lot of work in with each video in getting them to match with the music.

Mr. Sakurai said:
Roy was popular, so there was a strong impression that his inclusion would be welcomed. This was his first appearance since the Super Smash Bros. Melee game, and his fighting style changed quite a lot compared to back then.

There’s no CG part, or any other story, and it’s almost just a reveal video of Roy beating people up. But as a result of this we could include lots of different references, and I think it worked out well.

Mr. Sakurai said:
It’s obvious to those who know it, but this first shot is based on the opening to Super Street Fighter II™ Turbo. The phrase “I’m looking for a challenge” is the tagline from the original Street Fighter II advert in Japan. It was a perfect fit both for Ryu and for a reveal video. There are a lot of moves, but for the video we prioritized moving around a lot, like in the original game.

Mr. Sakurai said:
Cloud’s reveal was shocking, even looking back at it now. We took an unusual amount of time with the opening part, making it quiet and still, reminiscent of the opening of the original game. So that there would be something new no matter which fighter pairing it is, there were a lot of references included, like the stages, and this made it a bit longer than the other DLC videos.

Mr. Sakurai said:
We used the CG movie from the original game and added in a reference to the Super Smash Bros. series Corrin with his back to the camera, and the Branch of Fate options, were made again for this video. We called in the voice actors for Ryoma, Xander, Sakura, and Elise, which meant we were able to include lots of conversation in the in-game part. Overall, it’s full of witty comments.

Mr. Sakurai said:
The final character for Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U was Bayonetta. As in the original game, we’ve focused on a confrontation between angels and witches. I still get shivers hearing Bayonetta’s voice together with the moon onscreen. Pit and Palutena’s voice clips were new recordings for this, too.

Back then we didn’t have the “Battling with” videos to talk about how to use fighters, so there’s some explanation about her moves too.
Nintendo also made sure to let everyone know that there will be a part two. Given that their thumbnail has Super Smash Bros. Ultimate on it and not Smash for Wii-U and Nintendo 3DS, we assume it’ll be about the trailers for Ultimate!

Writing: Zerp Zerp
Thumbnail Graphic: Zerp Zerp
Social: Zerp Zerp
Source: Nintendo
Mitchell "Zerp" Brenkus


I just want to talk about how much Mega Man's reveal trailer means to me. I was about 14 or so. I didn't have much of any real internet access at the time. I had absolutely no idea that Smash 4 was even happening. Classic Mega Man was a series I always loved, as I grew up with 1-3 and 10 downloaded on our Wii and I owned the Robot Master Field Guide book. And I was a huge fan of Brawl at the time too, having been playing it a lot ever since receiving it for my 8th birthday.

I was just on my 3DS one night, browsing through all the Mega Man games available on the eShop. I wasn't buying any, just seeing which ones they had and watching their virtual console trailers. Suddenly, I saw this video amongst the search results. "Mega Man Joins The Battle." I didn't know what it was, but I checked it out anyways, and...as soon as I saw Mario, Donkey Kong, and Link, my heart stopped. The gameplay footage started, and I was so excited! A character I adored was showing up in a new Super Smash Bros. game! I practically sprinted out of my room to show it to my dad. I still remember what I basically yelled in his face.

"They're making a new Super Smash Bros. game, and they're putting MEGA MAN in it!"

I forced him to watch the whole trailer with me, and afterwards I immediately searched Smash on the eShop, where I found the E3 trailer, the Wii Fit Trainer reveal, and that other mini-direct presentation Sakurai did a short while after E3. A short while later, Miiverse came to the 3DS, and thanks to Sakurai's daily posts, I followed Smash 4's reveal train almost religiously.

Miiverse was my first real entry to having an internet presence, and the Smash community on there was my first interaction with the fandom I'm still part of today. And I will always remember that Mega Man reveal trailer for leading me into this...
"Unlikable?" How dare Sakurai insult my son. How rude. How audacious. I would never 😠

Joking aside, the trailers for 3DS and Wii U were stellar! Can't wait to see what Sakurai has to say for the Ultimate ones!
I really hope the hext Smash ditches trailers TBH. All it does is gatekeep obscure characters and get us to stay up overnight for disappointment
It does make me hopeful for another smash title in the future. For now, I'm still burnt out from all of Smash Ultimate's trailers after Sora's arrival.
Hard to believe that it will soon be a full decade since the first trailer for Smash 3DS/Wii U was released. Rosalina's reveal was probably the most impressive, since before her confirmation, I had doubts that she would be considered.
Last edited:
Top Bottom