Weekly Nintendo Corner - Super Smash Bros. (64)

Thirdkoopa

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Welcome to the Weekly Nintendo Corner! Every week as the weekend nears, Smashboards will be covering a title from the Nintendo pantheon. Most of the time, these are new releases or games that are coming soon, but do expect surprises – every once in a while, there may be a blast from the past.


Smash 64

This week’s topic is the 1999 Release Super Smash Bros., commonly called “Smash 64”. Super Smash Bros. was the first game in the series. Super Smash Bros. brings together a few characters from the Nintendo universe to duke it out.

Super Smash Bros., at the time, was different from other fighting games. Instead of using a bar, Smash Bros. uses a damage meter. When the percentage rises, the character can be knocked farther by an opposing player. The other major difference with Super Smash Bros. was four players; while not unique to Smash, several games afterwards proceeded in light of this


Premise in Development

Super Smash Bros. wasn’t always the game that started the series that’s known and loved today. In early development, it was called Dragon King: The Fighting Game with no pre-existing characters at all and was even drafted for the Super Nintendo. Development on it begun in about 1998.

Dragon King: The Fighting Game was later on transferred to the Nintendo 64 as heavily under budgeted; still made for a four player setting and still seen with the percentage footage of it. It lacked a lot of depth and was catered towards an arcade setting. Because of this, Masahiro Sakurai wanted to use a bunch of famous Nintendo characters and put them in a fight. He knew he couldn’t get permission directly, so he made a prototype with no informing until it was well balanced.

Not much is known about Dragon King: The Fighting Game before the premise of development. It’s only been mentioned a few times, and no prototype footage exists.

Super Smash Bros. was still low-budgeted and on one of the tightest game schedules ever produced, especially with the Nintendo GameCube coming into launch while the Nintendo 64 was being phased out. Somehow, in 1999, it still managed a January release in Japan!

Result

As a result of being rushed, a lot of content became thought of in the pipeline and wasn't able to be completed. Of these, we know for a fact that Bowser, Mewtwo, and King Dedede were all planned and had to be cut. Rumors, along with other evidence, discuss other characters but none known for certain.

Well the result of Super Smash Bros. was phenomenal, to say the least. With five million in sales, a powerful launch, modest reviews praising the Multiplayer, and even a community with tournaments starting up over the game (Smashboards.com - wait a second...), Super Smash Bros. was easily a success both financially and from community reception.

The game was such a success that its successor, Super Smash Bros. Melee, was quickly announced afterwards in development. Needless to say, it was one of the strongest launches for a series ever.

About the Team

HAL Laboratory developed the game while Nintendo published it. HAL Laboratory was founded in 1980 by Masayoshi Tanimura. The headquarters are located in Chiyoda-ku Tokyo in Japan with only two locations. The number of employees right now is currently 145. Along with the Super Smash Bros. series, they’re also responsible for Kirby, Mother, and various other video game titles.

Super Smash Bros. had Masahiro Sakurai on Directing with Hiroaki Suga, Satoru Iwata, Kenji Miki, and Shigeru Miyamoto all on production – Quite the talent even for a budgeted project.

Music

You didn’t expect this? Really?
How to Obtain Smash 64

Super Smash Bros. 64 has jumped up in price by quite a lot. If you’re in looks for a copy of the original Nintendo 64 cartridge, now would be the time to jump on it. The loose price runs from about $58.91 with new copies being $299.99! Thankfully, there was also a Virtual Console release for 1000 Wii points. It’s only available on the original Wii shop, at the moment.

Fondest memory with Super Smash Bros.? Anyone who’s never played it before? What do you think of these Retro type articles? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to tune in the rest of the month for the other Smash Bros. games fair share of coverage!

Thethirdkoopa is a Game Producer, Collector, Musician, and Smash Fanatic at heart. He's back in action with daily articles and content planning and whatnot! He's had many fond memories with Smash 64; many of them were even his debut with gaming. Talk with him and follow him on Twitter at @Thirdkoopa
 
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Blargg888

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Oh god the memories.

This game had some pretty haunting music, at least, the original music.

Still, it's where it all began.
 
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Morin0

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As a Smash 64 player, I thought this was going to be an article discussing the Smash 64 scene – not the game itself. (Or at least not entirely.)

Also, don't play the VC version. It skips frames. :)
 
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D

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It's funny how this game is played in tournaments more than Brawl :troll:
 

Nerd Saga Nate

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I own my copy of Smash 64. Cost me $50 - $45 with my employee discount at game store Gaming Grounds - and worth every damn penny, especially since I'm a collector. Still haven't been able to snag a box for it, but I'll keep looking.
 

Legaci

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"The other major difference with Super Smash Bros. was four layers ". Layers? I think you mean players :p
 

NovaSmash

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Buying the cartridge or buying on virtual console aren't the only ways to get the game. You can download the rom and a n64 emulator and play it on PC, it even has netplay.
 
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-LzR-

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This is such an underrated game. Barely anyone even knows how the game works and chooses to ignore it.
 

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Imagine what would have happened if Sakurai never got permission and they released this game as "Dragon King". Do you think it would still have been what it is today? LOL thats weird to think about
 
D

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This is such an underrated game. Barely anyone even knows how the game works and chooses to ignore it.
Agreed x9000. Well, at least it has a great online netplay scene, right? There must be lots of good players over there.

Imagine what would have happened if Sakurai never got permission and they released this game as "Dragon King". Do you think it would still have been what it is today? LOL thats weird to think about
Smashboards would be known as Dragonboards. :troll:
 

Snagrio

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Imagine what would have happened if Sakurai never got permission and they released this game as "Dragon King". Do you think it would still have been what it is today? LOL thats weird to think about
Short answer, no. Maybe a well enough title with a sequel, but nothing close to Smash.
 

1hipG33K

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I own my copy of Smash 64. Cost me $50 - $45 with my employee discount at game store Gaming Grounds - and worth every damn penny, especially since I'm a collector. Still haven't been able to snag a box for it, but I'll keep looking.
I still have my copy and console from the late 90s. Still plugged in too, and always ready for a smash classic!
 
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The Slayer

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Without a doubt a classic for me. Not much to say that it was fun to play back then and now. Great intro to such a well-known series.
 
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Thirdkoopa

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Glad everyone is digging the return of WNC! There's some exciting surprises and curveballs for this year so far, so I'm glad to get back to it. I surely hope it's even better than last year.

Buying the cartridge or buying on virtual console aren't the only ways to get the game. You can download the rom and a n64 emulator and play it on PC, it even has netplay.
I kinda avoid mentioning ROM's because they're not legal in most cases (No I'm not going to argue the semantics of them and Digital Copywright in here.) and more-so because I end up directly talking about details (which *does* pass out of the grey area, sadly)

Though maybe for the Melee article and Brawl (which will contain a section on P:M most likely) I'll mention the netplay component.
Short answer, no. Maybe a well enough title with a sequel, but nothing close to Smash.
Pretty much this. Frankly, with how budgeted it was, I don't think it would have even had a sequel.
 

leekslap

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IGN Review :
Kirby can fly. Ness uses magic. Mario and Yoshi's down b are famous apparently for some reason. Gameplay is simple and easy.

VERDICT
+ Nintendo
+ No water
- Jigglypuff

8.5

*sigh*
 

Scotch98'

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This gives me awful regrets.

A long time ago, I got an N64 and I wanted to play the first Smash. So I went on eBay and I bought a copy of the game for like, thirteen dollars. When it came, it was in the box with the manual, game, everything.

I cut the box and used it towards a LEGO fort and the manual is probably ripped up, covered in Pepsi. The game however, is actually sitting in my hand.

I was a dumb kid back then, geez.
 
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Seal

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I can just hear metal Mario's feet hit the ground: "pikow pikow pikow"
 

U-Throw

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This game just has so much nostalgia, I can't even begin to start explaining. Metal Mario was Satan for me way back then. God, I just love looking back and seeing how much I've evolved as a Smash player. I can't believe how much I miss this game. And I'm still waiting on another Fighting team that clones all of the characters.
Goddamnit, Nintendo, you've gone and made me shed a tear again. You're the only company I would ever cry for.
 
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kesterstudios

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while im not really into smash 64, since i find melee, brawl, and smash 4 better in every way, I do respect this game. it was a great start.
 

Soul.

 
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One of the many good games for the N64. At least it's being played online.
 

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Oh yes, so many great memories I had with that game. it will always be the best in the series. ;)

I wish Charizard should've been playable instead of Jigglypuff though...
 

THE_MAAFIA

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This gives me awful regrets.

A long time ago, I got an N64 and I wanted to play the first Smash. So I went on eBay and I bought a copy of the game for like, thirteen dollars. When it came, it was in the box with the manual, game, everything.

I cut the box and used it towards a LEGO fort and the manual is probably ripped up, covered in Pepsi. The game however, is actually sitting in my hand.

I was a dumb kid back then, geez.
Uhg I cringed when hearing this, and I'm the same age as you, that makes it worse hearing that >~<
 

RoxburyGuy58

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It's sad knowing HAL will never develop another Smash Bros. game. What was Nintendo thinking when they took it away from them?
 

Johnknight1

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Smash 64 was years ahead of its' time. It had the party game atmosphere of Mario Party, the unique items of Power Stone, the fighting game action of Street Fighter, and the platforming of Super Mario Bros. and morphed them and loads of Nintendo history into one truly creative, unique, and almost impossible to describe game that became a full fledged franchise.

It truly was ahead of its' time, and the execution of the game was also generally pretty good. Smash 64 probably had more "legendary" stages than any Smash game to date, outside of Pikachu it had pretty good balance, and while it has combos, the layout of the stage has a huge impact on it.

Overall the only real negatives the game had was Pikachu being too strong (its' worse match up is 60:40), 3 great stages (Final Destination. Battlefield, and Metal Caverns) not being playable without hacks in the standard multiplayer, and Luigi, Samus, and Ness being fairly limited characters.

Quite frankly, those minimal issues go to show just how truly special Smash 64 is, and why those who played it all those hours love the game as much as they do.
 

THE_MAAFIA

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Smash 64 was years ahead of its' time. It had the party game atmosphere of Mario Party, the unique items of Power Stone, the fighting game action of Street Fighter, and the platforming of Super Mario Bros. and morphed them and loads of Nintendo history into one truly creative, unique, and almost impossible to describe game that became a full fledged franchise.

It truly was ahead of its' time, and the execution of the game was also generally pretty good. Smash 64 probably had more "legendary" stages than any Smash game to date, outside of Pikachu it had pretty good balance, and while it has combos, the layout of the stage has a huge impact on it.

Overall the only real negatives the game had was Pikachu being too strong (its' worse match up is 60:40), 3 great stages (Final Destination. Battlefield, and Metal Caverns) not being playable without hacks in the standard multiplayer, and Luigi, Samus, and Ness being fairly limited characters.

Quite frankly, those minimal issues go to show just how truly special Smash 64 is, and why those who played it all those hours love the game as much as they do.
Actually that statistics of pika is an old list, but the tiers stay the same, pika doesn't demolish the game like metanight, pika is very beatable with ease, I'm a Samus And Luigi main and if you see pro's use em, they're actually pretty amazing,(even ness!) surprisingly this is the most balanced smash game yet, and I agree about the stages, I would love to have Final destination, Battle field and Metal Cavern, and even tutorial stage (you didn't mention it but it's a pretty cool stage) :)
 

L9999

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It's unbelievable that this game was rushed and underbudgeted yet a giant sucess. People that hate on Sakurai because of their precious Ridley or Melee or another stupid nitpick should thank him that Smash Bros. even existed.
brawl is a great game, aside from its awful character balance.
And tripping, tons of glitches, moon like environment, depressing looks, obnoxious stages, slowness a snail would be ashamed of, and an adventure mode with repetitive levels, cheap bosses, and story that doesn't make sense at all because the characters are all mimes that don't talk.
 

Gene

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Smash 64 had the best Final Destination song. I'm just putting that out there.
 

kesterstudios

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It's unbelievable that this game was rushed and underbudgeted yet a giant sucess. People that hate on Sakurai because of their precious Ridley or Melee or another stupid nitpick should thank him that Smash Bros. even existed.

And tripping, tons of glitches, moon like environment, depressing looks, obnoxious stages, slowness a snail would be ashamed of, and an adventure mode with repetitive levels, cheap bosses, and story that doesn't make sense at all because the characters are all mimes that don't talk.
brawl has problems but its still a great game and one of my favorite games last gen. and lol obnoxious stages? melee and even smash 64 had its share of obnoxious stages. i don't understand the depressing looks part. its ashame brawl gets a lot of hate.
 

L9999

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brawl has problems but its still a great game and one of my favorite games last gen. and lol obnoxious stages? melee and even smash 64 had its share of obnoxious stages. i don't understand the depressing looks part. its ashame brawl gets a lot of hate.
Don't get me wrong, Brawl is good on its own right, it's very nice to play it with friends, but Melee/Smash 4 asfixiate it with their better gameplay. Every Smash games has it's share of obnoxious stages, but Brawl has most of the most obnoxious ones. The depressing looks part is the colors, it looks very gritty and realistic, and it doesn't work with the cartoony characters, those who compose most of the cast (:marth::falcon: :ganondorf::link2::ike::samus2::snake::sheilda::zerosuitsamus:Only with these the style works). Also, the expresiveness of the characters is zero (:dedede::toonlink: These 2 are too happy, they were the Killager before there was a Killager).
 

kesterstudios

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Don't get me wrong, Brawl is good on its own right, it's very nice to play it with friends, but Melee/Smash 4 asfixiate it with their better gameplay. Every Smash games has it's share of obnoxious stages, but Brawl has most of the most obnoxious ones. The depressing looks part is the colors, it looks very gritty and realistic, and it doesn't work with the cartoony characters, those who compose most of the cast (:marth::falcon: :ganondorf::link2::ike::samus2::snake::sheilda::zerosuitsamus:Only with these the style works). Also, the expresiveness of the characters is zero (:dedede::toonlink: These 2 are too happy, they were the Killager before there was a Killager).
i respect what you're saying. something I love about brawl is that you can easily mod it. its a lot of fun changing anything in the game.
 

Molma

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Had this before I got a gamecube about 10 years ago. Cart was lost, but then a friend gave me his. Still quite happily palying it to this day. If only I could afford going to Apex...
 
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