This year's installment of The Game Awards started off with a bang with the reveal of Final Fantasy VII's Sephiroth as Smash Ultimate's next DLC character.
The trailer starts off with several characters about to face off against Galeem and his army of Master Hand clones, only for Galeem to be bisected by a vertical slash, the two halves splitting apart to reveal Sephiroth as One Winged Angel plays in the background.
Currently it's hard to tell much about Sephiroth's gameplay from the footage we've seen. We can tell that he has several moves that make use of his sword's length—including a move that can be used to pin himself to walls, a la Corrin side-special—as well as Firaga, a counter and another projectile. We also see footage of him sprouting a single wing, though it's unknown what function this serves in-game. It should also be noted that while a shot of Sephiroth cutting Midgar's main platform in half is shown, this is just some creative staging, as Midgar splits in half on its own as part of a stage hazard.
During the trailer, we can also see a new stage, seemingly based on the Lifestream from Final Fantasy VII. The layout for the stage seems to be the most promising one yet for competitive play, though the use of third-party music may cause streaming rights issues that prevent its use in tournament rulesets.
Towards the end of the trailer, we also see that Cloud has a new alternate Final Smash against Sephiroth, using Omnislash Ver. 5 instead of the normal version of Omnislash.
Sephiroth is set to release sometime in December 2020.
UPDATE: A full presentation showing off Sephiroth's moveset has been announced for December 17th, 2020
The one-winged angel, Sephiroth from the @FINALFANTASY series, joins #SmashBrosUltimate as a DLC fighter later this month! Tune in at 2pm PT on 12/17 for a presentation from director Masahiro Sakurai all about the DLC fighter, including the release date! pic.twitter.com/zRaZCSZkrn— Nintendo of America (@NintendoAmerica) December 11, 2020
Author's note: What were your thoughts on this reveal? Who were you expecting? Were you as caught off guard as I was?