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SmashBoards Staff Picks: Top 10 Most Likely Characters for Ultimate (Part 1)

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With only three characters left in Fighters Pass 2, the speculation scene for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is still going strong. There are a variety of characters that could potentially take up the last remaining slots, each with their own things going for and against their chances. Because of how often Smash reveals surprise us, it is never easy to come up with a completely accurate prediction of what may come.

To the best of our ability (and primarily just for fun), several members of the SmashBoards writing team and moderation staff worked together to create a list of the Top 10 most likely characters for Ultimate. This was done through discussing several characters together and creating unique writeups for each one (see the below section for an explanation on that). This is a two part article as only characters #10 through #6 are covered here. The second part with characters #5 through #1 will be up next Monday.

How this Top 10 was Created

Everyone who took part in the creation of this article privately submitted their own personal Top 10 most likely character list to a single person. This was to prevent each person from unintentionally being swayed by other people’s responses. Afterwards, all of the characters were listed along with their placements and amount of mentions. From there, the characters that were mentioned were discussed and a single, final Top 10 list was formed.

The following people contributed to the creation and character placements of this article:

@Megadoomer (Moderator)
@NonSpecificGuy (Moderator + Writing Team)
@Octorockandroll (Writing Team)
Sari Sari (Writing Team)
@Scribe (Admin + Writing Team)
@Thirdkoopa (Admin + Writing Team)
@Venus of the Desert Bloom (Moderator + Writing Team)
@Zerp (Moderator + Writing Team)


Each character had their section written by at least one of the users listed above. Characters 10-6 (the ones you'll see in this article) were each written by just one writer, however characters 5-1 were each written by at least two writers (even three in a few cases).

Honorable Mentions

Before starting with the actual Top 10, here are five characters that just barely missed out on the list.
  • Chosen Undead (Dark Souls)
    • With Namco playing a part in Ultimate’s creation, it’s easy to see a second Namco rep happening after Pac-Man. There are many contenders for another Namco character, and with the Dark Souls games being super popular, it’s easy to see someone like Chosen Undead being picked.
  • Adol Christin (Ys)
    • Adol carries with him both the popularity of one of Japan’s longest running action RPG series as well as the legacy of his company Nihon Falcom. With hits over the decades like Dragon Slayer, Ys, and the Legend of Heroes series, Falcom is definitely a slept-on company for Smash and Adol is the clear frontrunner for them.
  • Doom Slayer (Doom)
    • Doom is one of the longest-running and most influential first person shooter franchises out there. While not the first of its kind (seeing as Wolfenstein came before it), Doom was so ubiquitous that first person shooters were once called Doom clones. With every mainline Doom game on the Switch (including 2020’s Doom Eternal) and a Vault Boy costume already in Smash, it’s clear that Bethesda has no problem with getting involved with Nintendo and Smash Bros. specifically.
  • Bandana Dee (Kirby)
    • Bandana Dee has made an appearance in most if not all of the Kirby games since 2011’s Kirby’s Return to Dream Land, with many of them being playable roles. Smash Bros. takes a lot of inspiration from the Kirby franchise (as made especially clear through the Subspace Emissary mode), so he seems like an easy fit considering that Dee is a very popular request especially in Japan.
  • 2B (NieR: Automata)
    • While NieR: Automata isn’t on a Nintendo console, this seems like the sort of off-the-wall pick that the series includes from time to time, such as Joker or Cloud. Much like Persona 5, NieR: Automata was a break-out hit for its franchise and one of the best-reviewed games of 2017. Combine that with Yoko Taro’s willingness to throw the character into pretty much anything (Soul Calibur VI, Star Ocean: Anamnesis, Gravity Rush 2, Phantasy Star Online 2...), and 2B definitely seems like a possibility.

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With all of this explanation out of the way, let’s dive into the first half of the Top 10 Most Likely Character List!


10. A Character from Xenoblade

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Sari Sari :
With big successes like Xenoblade Chronicles 2 and Xenoblade Chronicles: Definitive Edition, Xenoblade could be Nintendo’s next giant IP if they play their cards right. What better way to make it even bigger than by adding the lead character of the most recent mainline installment?

Of all the Xenoblade characters, the most likely candidate right now is definitely Rex (& Pyra) from Xenoblade Chronicles 2. Many fans were disappointed when Rex was relegated to a Mii costume during the November 2018 Smash Direct, with Sakurai himself even acknowledging his massive fanbase. Sakurai would later state in an interview that characters from ARMS and Xenoblade 2 were considered for the base game but couldn’t make it due to timing. ARMS would later get a character in the form of Min Min in Fighters Pass Volume 2 so it’s easy to see Sakurai go back on his word to add someone like Rex.

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In addition to the ARMS situation, Rex is a super popular request especially in Japan where the term "Rex" was the second most trending thing on Twitter after the November 2018 Direct (the first term being "Super Smash Bros."). Keep in mind that this was the same Direct that revealed three Smash characters and showed off a ton of other new features/deconfirmed characters, and yet Rex was the talk of the town. Since then he has continued to place extremely well in Smash popularity polls, such as SourceGaming's 2019 Mega Smash Poll where he placed in 9th despite being viewed as deconfirmed by many at the time. Sakurai also greatly enjoyed Xenoblade 2, and him adding Rex wouldn't be the first time he's added a character from a game that he has gone on the record to publicly praise. Honestly if it wasn't for both the mii costume and couple of Xenoblade 2 songs currently present in Ultimate, I would personally almost go as far to call Rex a lock.

There are also viable Xenoblade choices outside of Rex. Elma from Xenoblade Chronicles X is a popular character and could bring in content from X which is basically nonexistent in Ultimate. Other characters from the first Xenoblade Chronicles like Dunban, Fiora, and Melia could also be worthy contenders considering the recency of the remake and their general popularity. Although not as likely as any of the other characters mentioned, it could also be a nice surprise to get Lora & Jin from the Xenoblade 2 Torna DLC. No matter how you look at it, there are a ton of great choices when it comes to the Xenoblade series.


9. Eggman (Sonic series)

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@Zerp:
Dr. Ivo “Eggman” Robotnik is known for many things like his zany personality, being featured in a ton of gaming’s most famous scenes and moments, and above all else, being Sonic the Hedgehog’s archnemesis. It doesn’t matter how young or old you are, if you play video games you probably know who this guy is.

Now, being famous alone doesn’t mean a character is likely to join Smash Bros, but Dr. Eggman isn’t just famous. He’s a gaming superstar! When you think of Sonic the Hedgehog it’s noticeable rather quickly just how inseparable he is from the franchise. He’s in nearly all the games and scenes involving him consistently manage to steal the show. If you’re playing a Sonic game, it’s pretty safe to assume he’s going to play a massive role in it.


This isn’t to say he’s without competition though. Sonic has a plethora of very iconic characters, like Miles “Tails” Prower, Knuckles the Echidna, Amy Rose, Shadow the Hedgehog and Metal Sonic. All these characters are very well known and have earned spots in the hearts of players across the world. However, it isn’t far-fetched at all to assume Dr. Eggman would be picked first amongst his competition. Why’s that?

Well, he’s practically guaranteed to play a major role in the next Sonic game, unlike the others. Sure, they’re all likely to have roles, but they’ve unfortunately been very inconsistent when it comes to having an impact on gameplay as of recently. Even Tails of all people has shockingly been relegated to a background role in many of the games. Believe it or not, Tails hasn’t had a major playable role in a modern mainline game since Sonic the Hedgehog 4: Episode 2, or, more depressingly if you don’t count that one, Sonic 06. Luckily for Dr. Eggman though, he’s been blessed with having a big role in the gameplay in practically every game as a boss, and he’s usually the final boss as well. Not to mention that aside from Sonic himself he’s the only character that’s been there since the very beginning. When you couple that with his status as possibly the most famous gaming antagonist not playable in Smash Bros, it’s really easy to see that he has a lot going for him.


8. Rayman (Rayman series)

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@Octorockandroll:
We all know that Sakurai and his team have a history of working way too hard on Smash Bros.. So, why not give them a break by letting them work on a character designed to circumvent the laborious process of animating limbs? The former Ubisoft mascot would occupy relatively untrodden ground as a disjointed brawler, having fist and foot hitboxes that extend without the need for pesky arm or leg hurtboxes. Not to mention, the entire Rayman series oozes an upbeat personality that would feel right at home in Smash.


But if that somehow isn’t enough for the hoodied hero’s candidacy, Nintendo and Ubisoft’s close relationship sets a direct precedent for Rayman to join the battle. Not only has his franchise recently crossed over with the big N’s boldest in Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, Rayman’s most recent games have been exclusively published by Nintendo over in Japan. In fact, he’s grown so close to the company that he got his own trophy and spirit in both SSB4 and Ultimate.


7. Lloyd Irving (Tales series)

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@Venus of the Desert Bloom:
Lloyd Irving is the protagonist of Tales of Symphonia, one of the more popular titles within the Tales series. This dual blade-wielding youth is full of courage and ideals but is also rather naive and stubborn. He joined his friends as they journeyed to save their world, Sylvarant in what’s called the Journey of Rejuvenation. This would lead Lloyd to learn about his origins and the events in history that led to the modern day. All eyes are on Lloyd as he was selected as a Mii Swordfighter costume in Super Smash Bros. for Wii U & 3DS. According to Masahiro Sakurai, Lloyd was by far the best option due to his exposure in the West and, basically, being the “Cloud” of the Tales series.


His inclusion would surely draw the ire and groans of “Too many anime swordsman” whiners but Lloyd does have a lot more to him than just dual wielding swords. He has access to combo-oriented sword attacks, a sword-based projectile, and a move pool that could literally write itself. They could even incorporate his two different styles: Technical or Strike. He could level up his attacks and, based on if Technical or Strike is selected, upgrade his attacks and learn entirely new ones. This could be incorporated into his gameplay, giving Lloyd a very extensive and flexible moveset that hasn’t really been seen in the roster before. Granted, he does have some competition from other important Tales characters such as Yuri, Cress, Velvet, and Luke. However, if Sakurai chose to include Lloyd as a Mii fighter outfit, then he’s going to choose Lloyd as the rep for Tales; no questions asked. Either he’s coming as a new fighter without the costume, coming in as a costume and not as a fighter, or just not appearing at all. Regardless, we will be getting Lloyd as the Tales newcomer rep or as the Tales Mii Fighter rep.


6. Monster Hunter (Monster Hunter series)

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@Venus of the Desert Bloom:
If you haven’t heard of Monster Hunter by now, then you must be living under a Lao-Shan Lung-sized rock (and that’s a humongous rock by the way). Monster Hunter is one of Capcom’s most successful and prolific series, easily ranking alongside other behemoths such as Street Fighter and Resident Evil. While Monster Hunter hasn’t had stellar representation on Nintendo consoles; there’s been a few notable titles like Monster Hunter Tri and Monster Hunter 4. And, of course, we have Monster Hunter Rise coming this spring.


That’s not the only reason why a Monster Hunter character is likely though. The series is already represented in Smash through the Assist Trophy/Boss, Rathalos, and two select tracks. We have yet to see the two remaining Mii Fighter costumes come to Ultimate that were present in Smash 4. While some feel that Byleth filled the role of a Hunter or even replaced the Hunter after negotiations fell through; that’s not concrete evidence that the Hunter can’t appear in Vol 2. They have tons of evidence and potential pointing in their favor and hopefully they get their chance to show off their hunting skills in Smash!

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Closing Comments

That is all for now. We hope you enjoyed the first of this Top 10 list! Expect part 2 of this article to go up on Monday.

EDIT: Click here to read part 2!

Credits
Writing:

Editing: @Zerp
Graphics: @Zerp
Social Media: @Zerp


Author's Note: What do you think about the chances these characters have going for them? Also, who are you expecting to make it into the Top 5? Let us know in the comments below!
 
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Sari

Comments

I really don't see a Xenoblade character happening. Actually, I've given up trying to predict Smash characters lol. It's impossible.
 
My only concern with Eggman is that Sakurai might think Sephiroth is the "grand finale" of villains added to Ultimate, and Eggman would be tossed to the side for later on.
Obviously I don't know and this is just a guess, but the way Sakurai talked about Sephiroth being possibly as iconic as Bowser rubbed me the wrong way.
 
I don't expect Eggman to be in Vol. 2 by a long shot despite Sephiroth, but man...I wanna see him in a Challenger Pack just so we can get more Sonic songs (and hopefully some more remixes, too)
 
For DLC, I think a Xenoblade character is one of the more likely choices becuase one was originally considered for the base game like ARMS.
A second Sonic character would be nice to see, but I’m skeptical because Sephiroth could be the only character from a represented third party franchise added (In terms of Sega characters, I can see Arle happening, and a Sega character isn’t too farfetched since we had one for SSBFor’s DLC in addition to FP1, but that could just be a pattern).
 
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For DLC, I think a Xenoblade character is one of the more likely choices becuase one was originally considered for the base game like ARMS.
A second Sonic character would be nice to see, but I’m skeptical because Sephiroth could be the only character from a represented third party added (In terms of Sega characters, I can see Arle happening, and a Sega character isn’t too farfetched since we had one for SSBFor’s DLC in addition to FP1, but that could just be a pattern).
I think the interview specified Xenoblade 2, actually, but he could choose from the first game or even X at this point
 
I think Crash will be on the number 1 spot on this list lol.
Crash does seem to be the frontrunner at this point, but I actually don’t see him coming since some of the characters that seem unexpected like Rosalina (from what I remember, most people expected Bowser Jr., Toad, and sometimes Paper Mario and Waluigi in For speculation), Sephiroth and Terry get in, yet some frontrunners miss the roster like Ridley and K. Rool in For, Decidueye in base game and Ryu Hyaubusa in FP1. Also, DLC is much harder to predict in my opinion.
Edit: I could still be wrong even if I think that Crash’s chances are overrated.
 
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Disagree hard with Xenoblade and Lloyd. Rex is out, and Heihachi's disconfirmation heavily harms Lloyd's chances. If Bandai-Namco were getting a second fighter, it'd have been Heihachi.
The rest are fine, though.
But God help us if Sora makes the top 5.
 
Disagree hard with Xenoblade and Lloyd. Rex is out, and Heihachi's disconfirmation heavily harms Lloyd's chances. If Bandai-Namco were getting a second fighter, it'd have been Heihachi.
The rest are fine, though.
But God help us if Sora makes the top 5.
I doubt they even thought this far ahead when they added the Rex Mii. ARMS was basically irrelevant in 2020 and they added Min Min anyways. Plus I wouldn't rule out Lloyd due to how highly requested he is (really doubt Heihachi hurts his chances since they could just fill the Miis with tales characters & other sword characters).

Anyways, I've given up on what people tend to see as the most likely picks since Sakurai seems to catch us off guard every time in this pass.
 
I doubt they even thought this far ahead when they added the Rex Mii. ARMS was basically irrelevant in 2020 and they added Min Min anyways. Plus I wouldn't rule out Lloyd due to how highly requested he is (really doubt Heihachi hurts his chances since they could just fill the Miis with tales characters & other sword characters).

Anyways, I've given up on what people tend to see as the most likely picks since Sakurai seems to catch us off guard every time in this pass.
I feel like Rex and Min Min proved that Mii Costumes deconfirm characters.
Sakurai specifically said that Rex would've been the next playable fighter, but he gave him a Mii Costume as compensation.
The fact that we're nine (don't forget Piranha Plant) DLC Fighter's in without Rex proves to me that Mii Costumes mean deconfirmation. Min Min further reinforces this since Sakurai mentioned that he considered Min Min and Ninjara for the ARMS fighter, not Spring Man and Ribbon Girl (who already had Mii Costumes).
Lloyd simply strikes me as unlikely due to Heihachi being FAR more iconic, so unless they come out of left field with Agumon, I don't see us getting another Bandai-Namco fighter, because if they WERE getting another fighter, it'd have been Heihachi.

But that's just my speculation. I got Byleth and Min Min's TOTALLY wrong, so don't take my speculation as fact by any stretch of the imagination.
 
Lloyd is in my top 3 favorite game characters of all time. And I remember the atari... yes I'm old.

Lloyd will immediately become my main character.

PLEASE Nintendo 😆
 
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