Why an ARMS Rep is such a Big Deal

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A Nintendo Direct Mini shadowdropped on March 26th which gave out tons of new information with glimpses into notable titles such as Xenoblade Chronicles Definitive Edition, Pokémon Sword and Shield DLC, and Bravely Default II. However, for us, the biggest announcement was the grand reveal of Fighter #6! Well, it was a reveal but not the way we thought. Move aside Crash, Hayabusa, and Sora! An ARMS character is coming!



What has a lot of people scratching their heads is that we already have ARMS content in Smash. Spring Man, Ribbon Girl, Ninjara, Min-Min, and Twintelle all appear as Spirits and Spring Man appears as both an Assist Trophy and Mii Costume alongside with Ribbon Girl’s costume. This has left much of the community confused with some even saying the announcement was underwhelming and deflating. However, this recent Ultimate news is far larger than what many people think. Here’s why:

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With Spring Man as both an assist trophy and as a Mii Fighter costume, it brings into question if either one could be promoted as a playable character. While Assist Trophies have been promoted, it’s only been in the game after their debut. This was the case for Little Mac from Brawl to Smash 4 and Dark Samus and Isabelle to Ultimate. If Spring Man is indeed Fighter #6, then the decade-long rule of “No Assist Trophy Characters” is thrown out of the window which opens the door for characters such as Waluigi, Isaac, Skull Kid, Shadow, Knuckles, Shovel Knight, Zero, Bomberman, and more. It should be noted that ARMS didn’t come with a stage upon launch so the aforementioned characters from already established series in Smash are probably unlikely. This is huge within Smash speculation and a huge game changer which will single-handedly smash that rule. This will also greatly change character speculation in future Smash titles it’s Assist Trophies due in fact return.

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Both Spring Man and Ribbon Girl are Mii Fighter costumes. While we have seen fighters get Mii Fighter costumes such as Link, Captain Falcon, and Samus; this hasn’t been the case for DLC characters. Again, this is huge since this means previous Mii Fighter outfits are also eligible to be promoted. This would open for characters such as Rex & Pyra, Chibi-Robo, Lip, Ray MKII, and Saki Amamiya to name a few. However, I would say characters like Sans and Cuphead will probably remain as enhanced Mii Fighter costumes. Much like Assist Trophies, a Mii Fighter outfit won’t mean the character getting deconfirmed if this is the case. The community has often used Assist Trophies and Mii Fighter outfits as the standard to how we deconfirm characters bit this announcement could possibly break this fan-created rule entirely.

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As previously mentioned, ARMS does have Spirits available which includes the Spring Man and Ribbon Girl as well as Min-Min, Ninjara, and Twintelle. If we were to get any of these characters, that would mean that Spirits could be promoted. This wouldn’t be as huge of a game changer like the above mentioned but would be a huge impact in Ultimate speculation. Promotion of Spirits has been an ongoing debate since they were first announced but we have yet to see a single Spirit promoted. In fact, the lack of Three Houses spirit event with Byleth’s eventual announcement was a huge blow to the “Spirits Don’t Deconfirm” camp. This means that characters such as Geno, Shantae, Zacian and Zamenta, Elma, Chris Redfield, Tetris Block, Mach Rider, Chorus Kids, and Rayman are open for promotion. It’s unknown how this would impact future Smash titles as it’s entirely possible that Spirits won’t return.

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Now, aside from the obvious Assist Trophy/Mii Fighter Outfit/Spirit condodrum, why else would this announcement be huge? Well, this announcement could point to the tone for Fighter Pass #2 which could focus on Nintendo and first-party properties. Joker in Pass #1 helped set the tone of “expect the unexpected” as we got five characters that no one really expected outside of Erdrick Hero. So it’s possible that having Spring Man and ARMS content could mean we could see Pass #2 focusing on the first-party instead. This would especially be the case if Spring Man and Ribbon Girl is announced.

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The best place to view cherry blossomseno Park, has been closed due to an increase of COVID-19 cases.

This could also possibly reflect the current COVID-19 pandemic. An ARMS character could have been chosen as opposed to a third-party or western character as it would be easier to deal internally within Nintendo. Currently, Japan has locked down international travel to and from foreign countries including the US, many cities have asked people to avoid traveling to Tokyo due to a sharp increase of coronavirus cases in the capital, Tokyo has begun shutting down with closure of events, businesses, nightlife, etc., and remote working has been in place for some time. This would greatly impact Sakurai’s preferences to meet “face to face” with developers to discuss including their characters. While DLC development obviously was going on during the development of Pass #1, an ARMS candidate might have been easier given the current situation.

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ARMS getting a Fighter’s Pass slot plus being available to play for free for Nintendo Online users could possibly point to a sequel. ARMS wasn’t the success story that Splatoon was but it still was well-received among critics and gamers alike. With Nintendo calling the shots (is Sakurai is to be believed), then perhaps this points to a future sequel? This would be good news for ARMS and also solidify the series as an important franchise to Nintendo.

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Lastly, we will be getting both the reveal and release in June which was when E3 would have been held if it had not been canceled due to COVID-19. This is entirely speculation but it’s possible that Fighter #6, who was intended to be revealed at E3, was replaced with the ARMs rep and then pushed to another date. It’s also possible that the ARMS rep was intended to be revealed and release around this time with Fighter #7 released in June. This could potentially cause the ordering of Pass #2 to be rearranged and, like Sakurai states earlier, delayed. The fact we are getting Fighter #6 this late means we could be getting our last character sometime in Spring or Summer 2021 a year later!

Needless to say, 2020 has been a very strange year for everyone and this is especially the case for Smash. Everyone wasn’t expecting an ARMS character due to the above mentioned reasons so it was pretty shocking to get that confirmation. It goes without saying that Smash speculation will consist of promotion, ARMS, and Fighter #6 and 7 speculation. So let’s sit back in our quarantined houses and enjoy this exteeeeeended wait for characters that could have a loooooong-lasting impact on Smash. Ok….that was a bit of a reach.

Author’s Note: ARMS was one of my top picks prior to Ultimate’s release and was sad when Spring Man appeared as an Assist. I thought he could have provided an interesting Moveset and play style that would have been the antithesis to Little Mac. What do you think about this recent announcement? Do you agree with the article assessment of ARMS impact on Smash? Are you deflated or excited? Let us know in the comments below!
 
Venus of the Desert Bloom

Comments

#4
I mean spirits shouldn't deconfirm anyway from the base game. The base game trophies Lucas and Mewtwo had in SSB4 didn't mean they weren't DLC characters did they? That's why this fan rule has always been dumb, especially for FP2.
For fighters pass 1 they almost definitely did deconfirm as looking back at it, not only are all the characters not spirits but they also represent games and series not in smash but they also intentionally didn’t give three houses a spirit event as the spirits were being held off for Byleth. DLC spirits probably deconfirm this time but base game spirits are probably on the table imo
 
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#6
ARMS as a game may be basic as all heck, but the characters and world are anything but.

Nice to see the charming cast finally get their time to shine, I know for a fact they're gonna be a fun and unique inclusion.

hoping for Min Min to get the win win, but I'd also be cool with Spring Man, Helix, Ninjara, pretty much anyone

will be interesting how much this changes speculation going forward. No matter how you look at it, a fan rule's getting broken.
 
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#8
how was arms under whelming? also wasnt the dlc supposed to have been chosen before the corona virus outbreak? arms is getting in cause its the 19th most successful switch game (well probably 20th by now) not beacuse of corona virus
Characters and announcements are chosen way ahead of schedule anyway. I doubt they had any choice in the matter.
Now. Delaying the trailer and announcement? That's something it may have to do with the virus.

Speaking of ARMS. I want Master Mummy. We are getting a guy with stretchy limbs. I would love a beefy thick boy that hits hard.
 
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#9
I don't know anything about ARMS, but I'd like to see Dr. Coyle or the mummy dude. If the don't promote other characters anyway.
 
#10
The thing about the original Fighter's Pass is that negotiations and development on it started before the full completion and release of the base game. Spirits and Assists "deconfirmed" in that case, because if they'd planned something for DLC before the game launched, they could've just removed it until the DLC came out because fans wouldn't know the difference. In other Smash games, the release window was long enough that they could adjust the final game based on the fan reactions (see: Sonic in Brawl), but with Ultimate, the window from reveal to release was only like 5-6 months. That wasn't even enough time to change the Fighter's Pass, let alone the base roster.

With Fighter's Pass 2, the base game was out for almost a full year when additional content past the first pass was revealed to the public. Any existing content (Assist Trophy, Spirit or otherwise) was developed multiple years ago. Now is the first time since they started developing Ultimate that they basically have a clean slate with who to add, it's like a new game.

ARMS, in particular, is the current biggest (read: most promoted) new IP developed by Nintendo in-house developers (meaning not a subsidiary like Monolith Soft and not a contracted third party like Platinum). The content that was added to the base game was likely added for the same reason a fighter is being added now, to promote the game. In hindsight, ARMS probably should've been more obvious -- it's like Splatoon getting into Ultimate in the first place.

I don't know that this necessarily opens the doors for upgrades of any existing content in the game, but being an Assist Trophy or a Spirit is absolutely not a hindering factor in being included in Fighter's Pass 2.
 
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#15
how was arms under whelming? also wasnt the dlc supposed to have been chosen before the corona virus outbreak? arms is getting in cause its the 19th most successful switch game (well probably 20th by now) not beacuse of corona virus
While the character/series selection Isn’t underwhelming, the way it was presented wasn’t up to the levels that previous DLC fighters were.
 
#21
Thinking back to Sakurai wanting to open as many games worlds together since this opportunity may never happen again. Honestly, fan rules is pretty much a roadblock meant to be broken eventually. Though, there are a few rules that are best undisturbed (Non-Video Game characters shouldn't join since its a celebration of gaming as a whole.)

Also, even if that said character is a spirit, it doesn't mean that they can't. Remember in Smash 4 with Mewtwo and Lucas's case before and after DLC
 
#22
Personally I love the fact that ARMS is getting a rep, it's been rather neglected and being in Smash Ultimate might be the big push it needs to be as popular as Splatoon. :)
 
#23
Interesting theory. From the very start, I assumed it was going to be anyone but Spring Man. That said, if the Arms rep does turn out to be Spring Man, then a whole bunch of possibilities just opened up. If it's not Spring Man, I'm betting on either Min Min or Twintelle, as I think they would be the most unique.

Personally, I wouldn't mind seeing an Arms sequel that takes on a more complex and hardcore-friendly approach. It could be either 3D or 2D, in terms of gameplay.
 
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#25
I was always extremely shocked when I found out Ultimate didn't have a playable fighter because Nintendo promoted the crud out of that game. Also in the short time I tried the game I could see it being very fun once you get past learning curve of the controls (but I was busy with other stuff so I just didn't try it... also Smash). Only reason why I haven't been expecting a fighter is because Spring Man was an assist trophy and if anyone was to represent his series it'd be him (though ribbon girl good 2nd mascot for the game).

If spring man does become a fighter, then I'm definitely going to be hoping for quite a few assist trophies. Would love the heck out of Alucard. Shadow the edgehog would become a 3rd loyalty main if he got in.
 
#26
It's also really odd that they said 'Arms fighter.'
Surely this is to point to something happening. But could it have to do with the oddity of using the series at all?

Does it point to the fact that most people suspected Spring Man, but really he was never going to be the character?
Does it point to the fact that we are likely to get costume changes/ more than one character in some fashion?

I cannot wait for the reveal of Twintelle/Min Min. I know I will eat these words if it is not (or Helix), but I've posted at that probability since day one. And had ... no support to the idea that Spring Man is clearly not the 'face of the series.'

Personal vindication would be welcomed right now... its a rough year.
 
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#27
To critique the article, I don't think Covid-19 affected anything but the timing of development and release.
Sakurai publicly stated that all 6 characters have already been chosen and that requests will not change the outcome.
Unless one of the chosen characters was a Dr. Mario Virus (that would be in bad taste), I don't think Covid-19 changed the roster.
 
#28
To critique the article, I don't think Covid-19 affected anything but the timing of development and release.
Sakurai publicly stated that all 6 characters have already been chosen and that requests will not change the outcome.
Unless one of the chosen characters was a Dr. Mario Virus (that would be in bad taste), I don't think Covid-19 changed the roster.
Quite frankly, I'm being optimistic and am going to hope that Sakurai's desire to keep his base employed may help us get a fighter pass three. Not to mention how hurt the world is right now. Sakurai may stay on to make a third pass just to bring cheer around the world.

.... end hopeful rant. Because it was pretty clear in January that Nintendo and most of the Eastern hemisphere was being hit with COVID. The delay of information should have been evident. And I understand that's easy to say in hindsight, except that it was current sight even in January.

Alright this topic is about to change so i'm cutting myself off!
 
#29
I wonder if we’re overlooking something here:

ARMS is pretty irrelevant as of late. Came out 3 years ago, there’s a niche community but not a very big one (to my understanding.) There were high hopes for it, and it has potential, and I don’t think anyone at Nintendo is giving up on it, so it just needs a little push.

Enter Smash. Get people back into the game a little, get some publicity, and then announce ARMS 2.

Just a thought.
 
#30
I wonder if we’re overlooking something here:

ARMS is pretty irrelevant as of late. Came out 3 years ago, there’s a niche community but not a very big one (to my understanding.) There were high hopes for it, and it has potential, and I don’t think anyone at Nintendo is giving up on it, so it just needs a little push.

Enter Smash. Get people back into the game a little, get some publicity, and then announce ARMS 2.

Just a thought.
Yeah, something fishy's going on here, there's definitely going to be something big for Arms.
Probably a sequel since it seems kinda late to make DLC for a game that stopped being updated 2 years ago.
 
#31
Yeah, something fishy's going on here, there's definitely going to be something big for Arms.
Probably a sequel since it seems kinda late to make DLC for a game that stopped being updated 2 years ago.
I think Alpharad said something about this, not totally sure though, just something I heard. Anyways I think it’s the most likely situation. It wouldn’t be the first time Smash has been used to revive a series.
 
#35
I wonder if we’re overlooking something here:

ARMS is pretty irrelevant as of late. Came out 3 years ago, there’s a niche community but not a very big one (to my understanding.) There were high hopes for it, and it has potential, and I don’t think anyone at Nintendo is giving up on it, so it just needs a little push.

Enter Smash. Get people back into the game a little, get some publicity, and then announce ARMS 2.

Just a thought.
Definitely possible. Though, it's worth noting that relevancy bears little on character choice. Look at Banjo, who still has nothing new announced, or Duck Hunt, who hasn't done anything since their NES game.
 
#36
To critique the article, I don't think Covid-19 affected anything but the timing of development and release.
Sakurai publicly stated that all 6 characters have already been chosen and that requests will not change the outcome.
Unless one of the chosen characters was a Dr. Mario Virus (that would be in bad taste), I don't think Covid-19 changed the roster.
I do think the virus has a hand in possibly delaying the DLC and I’m highly skeptical of any cancellation. But I am also the type of person who says “never say never”. We do have a precedent, weak or otherwise, of dlc being cancelled. Marvel vs Capcom 3’s DLC was cancelled and shuffled to Ultimate Marvel vs Capcom 3 due to the 3/11 East Japan Earthquake that was a ecological/financial/radioactive disaster for the country. Lots of plans were shelved due to that and I foresee the virus doing the same thing.
 
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#37
I'm so, so excited for ARMS to finally be included! An ARMS rep was the one thing I felt was really missing from the game at launch.


My prediction about the 'mystery character' is that they're going to include all the characters, or at least 8 of them, as 'costumes' like the Koopalings.
 
#38
I'm so, so excited for ARMS to finally be included! An ARMS rep was the one thing I felt was really missing from the game at launch.


My prediction about the 'mystery character' is that they're going to include all the characters, or at least 8 of them, as 'costumes' like the Koopalings.
I'm thinking 4 like Hero, as the four main characters are the ones with one body style.
Spring Man, Ribbon Girl, Min Min, and Ninjara.
 
#39
That sounds likely; I think Twintelle is a fan favourite who will be missed, though. There are some (Mechanica, Barq 'n' Bite) that probably wouldn't be possible as costumes at all.
 
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