I was listening to the GameChap’s discussion on Lucas, “Super Smash Bros LUCAS DLC – Does He DESERVE a Slot? (Wii U)” and decided to post my own thoughts on the matter. I have some issues with GameChap and Bertie’s argument that I would like to explore. I’ll skip over the fact that they called Ike a clone, because that’s way too easy.
First, the term “deserve” is used as a synonym of ‘I want’. If the GameChap or Bertie has actually took the time to define what they mean by ‘deserve’ than their argument could have been less ambiguous. I simply cannot understand how they came up with the conclusion that Steve from Minecraft ‘deserves’ to be in an Nintendo-centric crossover game, while the protagonist from a highly rated Nintendo game does not. I’m assuming worldwide popularity, or at least their perception of who holds worldwide popularity is what they mean by ‘deserves’.
The case has been made 4 Snake already, but I’m not sure about other indie characters like Freddy from Five Nights at Freddy, or Shovel Knight ,especially since Japanese gamers have no idea who most of those characters are. I’d like to encourage the GameChaps, and people who have similar thoughts to stop being so Western-centric with their line of thinking. We already discussed why this would be a bad idea on Source Gaming. Veterans have a significant advantage because they already have fans and worldwide recognition, even if their games were limited release.
From their discussion, I’m assuming that because Mother 3 was never officially localized, that the character is unfit to join the battle. While that has prevented a good number of characters from joining the battle, Lucas and Ness are somewhat unique. The Earthbound Community is sizeable, and the series was partly localized (1.5 titles). Since Earthbound/Mother is a series, it automatically has a leg-up from other Japan-only characters like Takamaru who comes from a single entry. Furthermore, Lucas was always meant to join the battle. In Melee, Lucas almost replaced Ness as the sole Earthbound/Mother representative. However, given the hectic development of Mother 3, which is a game that Sakurai was extremely familiar with (As he worked at Hal Laboratories during its’ development), Sakurai decided to stick with Ness. Because of his long history with the Smash Brothers series, I have no personal issues with Lucas’ involvement. Smash has always done better to represent series, and not single entries.
Another point, is that they claim people only want him because of his play-style, and not from enjoying the game. Smash dual functions as an action fighting game and a crossover event for Nintendo characters. People enjoying Lucas’ playstyle and not the actual character should not be used as an argument for ‘deservedness’ I love Luigi as a character, but I do not like his playstyle. Does that make me a hypocrite as I didn’t chose him as my main? No, because in the end, Smash Brothers is a game. If you don’t enjoy it, then you are playing it wrong.
“Dev team better spent adding fan favorite characters into the game and highly requested characters other than Lucas” (5:04)
DLC is going to be for the fans. The fans want Lucas back, and it’s not just Japan. Lucas was voted as one of the top most wanted characters for DLC before he was announced in my Mega Smash Poll, which was answered mostly by Westerns. Saying that he has no popularity in the West because his game was not released is incredibly ignorant.
Lucas can’t be imported directly from Brawl. We know from data-dumps that an incredible amount of work goes into the characters to ensure they are fit for battle. In addition to making them work on two versions (which is something that GameChap has forgotten), they need to be adjusted to fit with the new engine, and ensure that they do not throw off the game balance. Even after that, ensuring that they work with 8 Player Smash, and adding additional alts, is additional work. While it is less work than creating a new character from scratch, we need to remember that the development team size has been reduced, and with every character added, the amount of work multiples.
That being said, I do believe Lucas AND Wolf were put on low-priority in Smash for Nintendo 3DS/ Wii U as Sakurai believe that those series had no future. I believe many people incorrectly attribute this to the Ice Climbers demise, which is something that I’m adamantly against as the Ice Climbers were chosen as the Famicon representative and not for their actual series. Lucas coming back is because Sakurai understands that people are attached to the character, and hates to disappoint fans. DLC is meant to amend their wounds, and to make, ‘players happy’.