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Is Kirby the best Super Smash Bros character? USA TODAY staff sounds off

  • June 19, 2021

Nintendo recently hosted Nintendo Direct live stream during the Electronic Entertainment Expo, revealing several video games coming to the company’s popular video game console.

Among the announcements, the company revealed the character Kazuya of “Tekken” fame is the latest brawler to step into battle as a new character in the fighting game Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. However, Nintendo didn’t specify when Kazuya would make its Smash Bros. debut.

In honor of the announcement, we asked USA TODAY staffers to give us their favorite Smash Bros. character main. Here are the top picks: 

Death by a thousand cuts sums up my best-loved Smash Bros. main: Young Link. He’s from my favorite Legend of Zelda franchise game: “Ocarina of Time,” and made his Smash debut in Super Smash Brothers Melee.

Young Link is cute, light, fast and annoying to play against. YL’s my go-to in one-on-one matches because he can control the space and tempo. Toss on your favorite tunic and rain down the pain with his trusty bombs, arrows and boomerang to keep adversaries at bay.

Nothing is more satisfying than bombarding projectiles at your opponent, giving them the old one-two hyah-hyah smash attack, and ending with a long swig of Lon Lon Milk. What’s not to love about the pot smashing, young Hero of Time? He’s pure fun, if you’re the one playing him.

— Lindley Taylor, motion graphics artist

I am notably not very good at Smash Bros., so to have a character that has devastating super punch is a no-brainer for me.

The first time I ever played Smash I chose the Captain because he reminded me of Hannah Barbara’s Blue Falcon. I did notice the lack of Blue Falcon’s sidekick Dynomutt, Dog Wonder and it forced me to take a closer look at Captain Falcon’s history.

Captain Falcon is originally from Nintendo’s F-Zero series and is a bounty hunter and a racer, and sadly, has never aligned himself with the Scooby-Doo gang. Personally, I also just like how he yells “Falcon Punch” when he does his super punch thing.

— Robert Lindeman, senior video editor. You can follow him on Twitter @digitalcurios

If you can’t beat them… be them. Kirby, who courageously inhales his enemies and takes on their arguably lesser abilities, is my go-to for Smash Bros.

The sweet, pink ball wields a hammer and can smash down on his competitor’s like a brick, allowing me to avoid hand-to-hand combat (which I am very, very bad at.) Not only is his character most compatible with my horrific gameplay technique of “button smashing,” but he’s also adorable.

Aesthetically, Kirby makes sense. And he gives me an excuse to run around the map swallowing my opponents and foiling their moves before I am ultimately killed in melee.

— Alex Connor, audience development editor. You can follow her on Twitter @thealexconnor

I’ve only played Smash on the 64 and really enjoyed just shutting down my friend’s attempts to do anything impressive or skill-related with a just big swallow!

— Jenna Hecker, video programmer. You can follow her on Twitter @JennaHecker

I grew up occasionally playing video games with my younger brother on our Playstation, but I never really had the desire to invest in my own console. That is until the pandemic hit. I bought a Nintendo Switch last summer and like to play games casually.

I don’t really play Super Smash Bros, but I will if that’s what everybody wants to play. I’m more of a button-masher in that game. I do enjoy Kirby All-Stars, and Kirby is in Smash, so that counts, right?

I enjoy his ability to copy his friends’ and enemies’ powers, as well as merge powers because you’re not stuck with just one. Want to wield a sword? What about a flaming sword or a flaming chain? I’m also lazy and enjoy Kirby’s ability to float over enemies I don’t feel like fighting.

— Waldy Diez, video programmer. You can follow her on Twitter @_waldy and on Instagram @waldymdiez

There’s just no beating the versatility of this character, plus her design is slick and ready for battle.

Do you need long-range attacks? Samus has guns and a side special move with a whip. Do you need melee power? Her kicks are astounding, plus she carries a stun gun. Oh, and her up special move is perfect to hit opponents on higher ground. 

I do have to admit, I have never played a Metroid game (where Samus Aran is the protagonist). And before she was introduced as a character I opted for the ol’reliable Link. 

Did I overuse Link’s up special move? Yes. Did I overuse Zero Suit Samus’ whip attack? Yes. But have I grown as a gamer and appropriately use the blocking function? No. 

Listen, Smash Bros is a great equalizer where non-gamers like me can come in and play a super annoying game and win. And with Zero Suit Samus I can do it in style. 

— Josh Rivera, money consumer editor. You can follow him on Twitter @Josh1Rivera

Nothing like Pikachu bringing down that lightning bolt from above like he’s Thor.

— Tyler Hediger, video producer

I primarily use Sonic because of how fast he is and his up special move. I like being able to run away if I need to.

Sonic’s run attack, where he turns into a ball and revs forwards, is one I especially like. It makes it easy for me to attack multiple people at once and get to different parts of the field quickly.

I usually switch between him and Meta Knight. However, I’m not a big fan of Meta Knights up special. It’s so unpredictable and I usually fall off a cliff that way. Sonic’s is more reliable for me.

The main thing I look for in a Smash Bros character is speed and accuracy.

— Steven Vargas, breaking news intern. You can follow them on Twitter @Steven_Vargas_ and Instagram @steven.varg

There were no video games in my house when I was growing up. We barely had a TV. It was the early ’90s, so instead of looking at screens over the summer, we were shoved outside on sweltering, swampy summer days to grub around in the yard. It was Central Florida, and I was firmly placed in the camp of heat-averse children known as “Indoors Kids.” I liked books and Disney movies. Being outside was torturous, sweaty and dirty.

So when I made a friend in first grade who had a Super Nintendo at her house, I quickly became hooked, making every excuse to go over to her house, begging my parents for a ride. I could sit indoors, eat as many snacks as I wanted in the cool AC while having fun with my friend.

She only had one game: “Mario Kart.” Once firmly planted in front of the TV, my friend and I argued relentlessly over which character we got to race with – we both wanted Princess Peach. She was, after all, a princess. I usually did not win these arguments. Guest privileges did not apply in this house. There was no mercy. This was Mario Kart time, and it was cutthroat.

Now that I don’t have to share with my friend, I can play as her character any time I want. To this day, I don’t know if Princess Peach has any special skills, but she was my choice then, and she is my choice on Smash Bros now.

Long live the princess!

— Laura L. Davis, audience editor. You can follow her on Twitter @lauradavis

I love fighting games. I’ve played nearly all of them: “Street Fighter,” “Mortal Kombat,” “Tekken,” “Virtua Fighter,” “Samurai Shodown,” “Marvel vs. Capcom,” you name it. But I have never been able to get into Smash Bros.

The first couple of times I played, I didn’t get how you won a match. And before I took the time to learn that, I just moved on to something else and never looked back.

What’s that you say: how do you call yourself a fighting game fan and not play Smash? Look, I love pizza, but pineapple isn’t my thing.

— Brett Molina, gaming reporter. You can follow him on Twitter @brettmolina23

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