The following is an editorial. You are allowed to disagree.
I’ve been doing a lot of reading on character choices lately for my ballot research in Japanese, and in my head I’ve been comparing and contrasting the two different communities. I’ve seen this issue come up on the Japanese side a little bit, but it comes up way more often on the English side. I’m not sure why, but it might have to do with cultural differences, or the average age of Smashers. Either way, I figured I would give my two cents on it.
The issue that I’m talking about is “putting other characters down”. This is when a bias individual will unnecessarily criticize another person’s character of choice. There’s a couple of reasons for this.
1.Putting down that character makes the individual believe that their own character of choice has a better chance of making it into Smash. It’s of course not actually true, and it is done to make the individual temporarily feel better about their choice.
2. They simply don’t like that character or what that character represents. I’ve read some comments online from “fans” who say, “I didn’t ask for Lucina. I didn’t ask for Rosalina, etc”. My advice to those “fans” is this: ignore those characters. They aren’t for you. Those characters have fans. You aren’t the center of the world. Grow up.
Character fans are constantly putting down other character’s chances as they believe it’s a “competition”. ‘that character can’t happen because then my character can’t be in the game!’ I assure you, this is not the case. There’s a middle ground in character choices. It’s not all or none, it’s about appeasing the most amount of people with the limited resources and time that game development has.
With Soma’s latest translation, I saw some people say, “lol Sakurai is comparing Krystal to mooks.” basically implying that Krystal is worthless like those characters. That’s the totally wrong attitude to have. First, it’s immature. Second, it’s not productive at all. It doesn’t tell us anything expect of the bias the speaker has.
With all the research that we’ve done on character choices, and the development of Smash Brothers, I don’t get the impression that Sakurai inherently sees a character as worthless. After all, any character that is heavily requested or well known has it’s fans. I’ve seen a ton of odd ball requests in the past two weeks, and a lot of them were actually very sincere. Believe it or not, Sakurai wants to appease the most amount of people. The only exception are characters that started out as non-video game characters like Spongbob and Goku.
I think he looks at popular requests and goes through this process:
- Looks to see if he can use them
- Sees if they are popular enough; is the character actually obscure?
- If they have a moveset
- Fill a niche/ ‘role’ in the roster
- Favorable to development
- If not 5 can they be made into a clone if there’s extra time in development?
- Are they relevant or retro? (ties into 4 somewhat)
They don’t happen in that order per say and some parts occur at the same time. I bet James Bond had somewhat of a moveset as Sakurai has mentioned that he wanted to implement his crouch walking, but in the end #1 stopped him dead in tracks. Takamaru probably passed all the requirements except 2, and couldn’t be made into a clone. Krystal in Brawl might have passed everything except 5 and 6, as basically said by Sakurai in the interview.
If you are going to say a character has a chance or no chance, then base it on logic. There’s really no need to make character requests such an emotional thing. If you want to base your logic purely on emotions then you are going to be constantly disappointed with the choices that are made for Smash.
I’m working on what characters are being requested in Japan. I have an insanely busy week ahead of me, but I might release a preview of what I’ve found (basically a list of popular characters + some information). No ‘rankings’ as I’m not 100% satisfied with my data yet. Stay tuned for new information.
PushDustIn has no sympathy for stupidity. You can follow him on Twitter if you are over the age of 15.
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Mains: Yoshi (64), Game and Watch (Melee), Wario (Brawl), Wario/Pac-Man (Smash for 3DS/Wii U)