An overview of ALL Nintendo IP NOT in Super Smash Bros

Nintendo Ip NOT Smash

UPDATE2: After consideration and actually playing Miitomo I have decided to consider it a Tomodachi Life game and remove it from the list. The numbers will not change though because a Nintendo IP I missed was pointed out to me on Twitter, being Napoleon for the GBA.

UPDATE1: Removed Pocket Card Jockey as there is evidence to say it is 100% Game Freak and not co-owned (although it is not 100% positive but better safe than sorry)

In the previous article I revealed to the world how many IP Nintendo had. With 193 IP under their belt there is a lot to pick from when it comes to representation in the Super Smash Bros. series. Nearly 2/3rds of these IP have actually appeared throughout the various Super Smash Bros. games, but that still leaves 1/3rd of that list never getting any representation. In this article I want to try and give some reasons as to why these series may not have gotten a chance to get some of that Smash love. There are a few with obvious reasons but for some others, not so much.

Out of Nintendo’s 193 IP there are 84 that have missed the Super Smash Bros. mark. If you are curious how I defined what counts as an individual IP then you can check out the previous article. Just like the last article, I am going to split this post up into individual categories and highlight some of these games. Unfortunately I can’t give any examples of representation because none exist, but I can give the year that this IP debuted as it will help us to understand why some of these series never appeared. With that out of the way I will begin this analysis, starting with the most recent category.


The New IP

badge arcade

Despite what some people might say, Nintendo has not gone a year without releasing a brand new IP (since 1983). Because of this there are some IP that have come out between the time that Super Smash Bros for Wii U & 3DS began development (2012) and the present year of 2016. That means outside of the rare cases like the Streetpass DLC and Splatoon which all only got trophies, no IP after this time would have made it into the latest Smash Bros. title. These games are:

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There are only three new IP to launch since the beginning of 2013 that have not made it into Super Smash Bros. Maybe they will get their shot in Super Smash Bros for NX, as all except one could be seen as series Nintendo is actively trying to push, which is a factor. Moving on from this let’s go from one extreme to the next with the next category.


The Forgotten Years

EVR Race

Some people might forget this but before Nintendo developed home consoles and even before the Game & Watch and Mario were a thing, Nintendo had a small group of gaming IPs mostly made specifically for the arcades. Some of these series did get some recognition in Smash like Sheriff and Colour-Game TV which both appeared as Assist Trophies, but the rest have all been left in the dust. These IP are:

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So here we have 13 different IP and honestly I can see why most of them are not exactly on the priority list for inclusions in the Smash series. Most of these are very similar with no distinguishing qualities. Some have their own characters like Sky Skipper but most are a Alleyway or Space Invader rip-offs. The only three I see with any chance in the future are the Ultra Hand, Radar Scope and EVR Race. All three have some kind of special legacy with Nintendo and should get some reference somehow, whether it be a trophy, a sticker or in the Ultra Hand’s case: an item.

The next category is something that I have personally noticed in my studies of series representation in the Smash series and while I cannot say there is definite proof of this, I do think it is very likely.


Journey to the Western IP

eternal darkness

Nintendo, Masahiro Sakurai and the Super Smash Bros series are all born in Japan. The Super Smash Bros series has always been made in the Japan and by Japanese developers. It is thanks to this that the Smash development team may have a strong knowledge of Japanese made games, but it also might mean that those Nintendo games and series that are either made in the West or exclusively Western do not get the same priority. When making Super Smash Bros Melee Sakurai stated that while a lot of Japan-exclusive games would appear as trophies that same privilege would not be given to Western-excluisve/made Nintendo properties. Now it is clear that some games like the Donkey Kong Country and Metroid Prime games, which have been made solely by Western developers, get to appear in Smash but the difference here is that their IP originate in Japan as well. These next few games were either made by a Western studio or released exclusively in the West by Nintendo.

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Out of all the IPs Nintendo owns, it speaks volumes that there are only eight IPs made exclusively in or for the West, and none of them being in Super Smash Bros. Some of these were even made by Nintendo’s in-house development teams in Japan but released only in the west (StarTropics and Gumshoe) so their exclusion should definitely be noted. Aura-Aura and Eternal Darkness were both developed in the West but saw release in Japan as well. This means that Sakurai and his team may have been aware of these series but for whatever reason chose not to include it. Especially, Eternal Darkness which is a popular IP that Nintendo keeps holding onto. Aura-Aura may not get the chance because it is too obscure which is a perfect segway into…


These are Really Real?


Not every IP can be a big blockbuster hit and many slip through the cracks. In Nintendo’s case there are a lot that slip through the cracks, to the point that many gamers wrongly believe that Nintendo relies only on its established names like Mario and Zelda, which is not true. Some of these IPs however are so random and obscure that they are likely not a priority for that Smash representaion. This will probably be the longest list in this article so prepare yourself!

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Now be honest with me, how many of those 35 Nintendo IP did you really know? A lot of them are obscure for one reason or another. Some of these were released for obscure/unpopular services like DSiWare (Snapdots), WiiWare (Rock N’ Roll Climber) or Nintendo’s SatellaView (Hakkun). Some of these were special, limited time, japan-only releases (And-Kensaku) or a reward from Club Nintendo (Sakeburein). And others just did not sell very well (Teleroboxer) or were overshadowed by other IP of the same genre that were just better/more memorable (Time Twist).

Now I will be honest. What classified as an obscure IP and what classifies as a well-known one is entirely opinionated. I can’t sit here and say with authority that Sakurai and his team did not know about any of these games as that may not be true. What I do know however is that none of them appeared in Super Smash Bros. and so this is just one theory as to why. This same logic can be applied to the next category as well.


Is That Real Life?

Tokyo Crash Mobs

The last category was easily the biggest and so in reverse fashion this will be the smallest. The point behind this category is that this IP’s exclusion may be due to the use of a real-life person in promoting the game. There is a reason that Nintendo rarely acknowledges in Super Smash Bros the version of Punch-Out that included Mike Tyson. There are legal hurdles to jump through and this might be why these series have never appeared in Smash.

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These three series both involve real-life Japanese celebrities: the first is a Japanese idol called Miho Nakayama while the second is Miki Miura, a Japanese manga artist who draws under the name Momoko Sakura. The final game does not use any famous person in particular but is made up of entirely real people and photos which may cause a problem when trying to bring the IP over to Smash.

I told you that section would be pretty short and this next one is only a bit better.


What is Even There?


Not every game comes packed with a lot of content or even with any recognizable assets. A lot of the Touch! Generations games had this problem and I think it does play a role in deciding whether that series can get any representation in the Super Smash Bros series. This category is not a deal breaker however as simple IPs like PictoChat and AR games, which also suffer from this problem, have managed to make it into the Smash series. The IPs on this list have also distinguished themselves from the obscure category (which also had a lot of simple IPs included) as I feel these games were well-known or did get some push by Nintendo for whatever reason.

Spoiler title

There are eight franchises included here that all seem too simple to appear in Smash. As I said earlier though, simplicity cannot be the only factor as equally simple Nintendo IP have managed to get in somehow. So, I feel like it is either popularity issue or Sakurai and his team were unsure where to include them and so they did not make the cut. I need to give two of these franchises a special mention however; Swapnote for the reason stated in the spoiler but also Pinball. A bumper from a Pinball machine has appeared in the Super Smash Bros. series but Nintendo’s own Pinball series is not credited as a source. Due to the general look of Pinball and the universal concept, it becomes hard for this particular IP to get any kind of future representation in the Super Smash Bros series. The same can be applied to Alleyway which is also very generic.

This covers it for all the major reasons why these particular Nintendo IP have never gotten to appear in the Smash Bros series but unfortunately this does not cover every missing IP still. So, welcome to this cop-out category I am calling…


I Have no Clue. Sorry.


With the games included on this list I don’t have any tangible reason why they could/did not make it into the Smash Bros franchise. These are all series that I believe were big enough/made by Nintendo’s key developers but still missed the mark in some way. I will cover a lot of these a bit more personally afterwards but for now, here is the list.

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These here are the final 14 Nintendo IPs that have not been included. These are titles that I feel are NOT obscure and big enough to deserve some sort of appearance in the Smash Bros series but for whatever reason have missed out. Starting with the first four on that list the only reason I can think of is that they are old. All four were made by Nintendo’s main studios with Marvelous being the product of Zelda director Aonuma and Mole Mania coming in-part from Miyamoto.

The next two IPs likely missed the mark come Brawl time due to their relative obscurity and Japan-only status. While both were GBA games made by major Nintendo studios (SPD and AlphaDream) I do not believe either of them sold well or made big headlines and with Mario & Luigi basically working off of the Tomato Adventure style it almost loses a reason to be included into Smash.

GiFTPiA was a popular GameCube title only-released in Japan that missed out on appearing in Brawl. It may have been due to its unfortunate release window between the launch of Melee and the planning stages for Brawl, although this did not stop some other IP, like Starfy, from making the cut. It may have something to do with Skip Ltd. themselves as Smash is noticeably light on content from them only ever getting Trophies and Stickers. Even their biggest IP, Chibi-Robo, only made one appearance in the latest Smash as a trophy on the 3DS and that was with a game in development.

ASH is another odd one that, like GiFTPiA, was released only in Japan and debuting in an unfortunate time period late during Brawl’s development. This would be a sound enough reason except that fellow DS RPG Soma Bringer did get to appear in Smash for Wii U despite having all the same issues as ASH. Both saw their respective companies next IP Last Story for ASH and Xenoblade for Soma Bringer appearing in the latest Smash so ASH really feels like it got the short-end of the stick.

Endless Ocean is another really surprising, missing, franchise. Debuting for the Wii, the first Endless Ocean appears to have done well as it saw a sequel. It’s exclusion may have been due to the nature of the game but really it had all the makings of a series prime for some kind of Smash representation, either via trophy or music.

Wii Music and Disaster are two modern IPs and first parties ones at that, that ended up missing their chance in Smash. The reason for this may be slightly more obvious though as both were a disaster in the sales and reception department. Both Wii games did very poorly with the latter not even seeing a US release. So that unpopularity may have been the reason they got excluded.

Takt of Magic is an odd one as it is a second party title made by both Taito and Nintendo. That may be why it missed the mark in the latest Smash title as it could very well be a contract issue, much like Joy Mech Fight missing out in Melee however that is just idle speculation.

The final two games are both series that were made by developers close to Nintendo and got somewhat of a push by the company. I can only assume they sold poorly and ended up becoming easily forgettable and that is why they missed out.

So that covers it for the 84 Nintendo IP that have yet to appear in the Super Smash Bros series and I have no doubt in my mind that some of these will appear in the next installment of Smash. Just to feel a bit of completion though, here are the missing sub-franchises from the Nintendo Sports series and the Touch! Generations series.


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Both IPs are in Smash already but not all of their sub-series are and so these 12 series are here just to inform you of their existence and should not count towards the final 85 total.

There you have it, all 193 of Nintendo’s IP over two articles. I hope this series has been enlightening for you all and you can be sure that Nintendo has more IP on the way, what with Nintendo President Kimishima hinting at some original IP for mobile devices and with the Nintendo NX around the corner.

As a parting gift to you all I am including below a master list of all the Nintendo IP both in and out of the Super Smash Bros series, split into 1st and 2nd party titles (note: 2nd party is not really a thing that exists but it helps with categorizing the IP by ownership). As a thank you for all my hard work I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below. Let me know about some of the series that missed out in Smash and tell me which ones you hope to see in the future.

If you have not already, make sure to follow @allsourcegaming on Twitter as well as myself: @MrNantendo. Lastly if you are feeling really generous then please consider donating to the Source Gaming patreon. Every little helps us, especially as we are a non-profit organization.

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Joshua 'NantenJex' Goldie
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Joshua 'NantenJex' Goldie

Video Content Lead at Source Gaming
If video game historian was a career that would be my goal in life. I have spent a lot of my life studying various histories and so I am super familiar with sourcing, which is pretty essential for this site and just a good thing to do in general so you do not spread lies. I have a huge fascination with the old days and ips with Nintendo. There is so much potential for old franchises like Balloon Fight, Marvelous, Nazo no Murusame Jo and more to come back in the modern age. At least Smash celebrates those games! My focus for source gaming are the Dream articles and working on Project Omega. I hope you enjoy reading my work.
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    1. I thought about that but then I also thought that about HarmoKnight and that turned out to be 2nd Party with Nintendo. It’s hard to say but if any evidence appears to truly confirm it as 100% Game Freak then I will remove it from the list.

      1. I think it’s all Game Freak, considering that it was released on mobile phones in Japan, many years before Nintendo announced their mobile games.

        1. Wait it was released on Mobile phones? I tried finding something on that just in case but could not. Do you have a link?

            1. Ah ok. It apparently came out on 3ds first though so it could be like Pokemon. But ther eis more evidence to say its not so I will remove it.

    2. I can also confirm this. Unlike HarmoKnight, Pocket Card Jockey (Solitiba) is solely a Game Freak IP. Though it does look like Nintendo will be publishing it in the West for them.

  1. I will always be disappointed by the lack of an Endless Ocean stage in Smash Bros. but alas.

    Also, doesn’t either Mario or Luigi have an alternate color based on Pinball?

    1. Luigi never appeared in Pinball and Mario’s costume in that is just his jump man costume from Donkey Kong so its not really a reference to Pinball.

  2. Pretty nice list you have got here. Good work!
    I knew most of these, but some of them really are obscure to the point where you don’t even remember them when you know them…

    I found out about Hakkun a couple years ago and always thought it would have been a cool IP to expand. Saddly, they never payed that much attention to it.

    I wonder if Eternal Darkness also has some sort of ownership issue, since some of the staff is now involved in the creation of Shadow of the Eternals, the Wii U spiritual sequel, under another studio Quantum Entanglement Entertainment. Still sad there’s not even a trophy for it…

    Still think it would be fun to get a character in Smash representing Hanafuda cards, taking into account how important they are both to Nintendo and Japan’s history as a whole, but alas it isn’t meant to be. Why hasn’t Nintendo made a worldwide released Hanafuda video game yet, though?

    1. Have they even released a Hanafuda video game? That might be why lol. I’ve also thought that Hanafuda cards would make a good replacement for stickers if they decide to bring artwork collectibles back.

      Eternal Darkness is 100% Nintendo. They update the copyright every few years just in case. I’m curious what series they have not updated because I guess that means they would no longer own them? But it is nearly impossible to tell from the outside.

      Hakku is interesting but like all satellaview games it has issues. Same for Nintendo Pocket Stories which Nintendo apparently were hoping would be a major IP (ala. Splatoon) but it did not sell well. Probably becasue it was a SatellaView game coming out when the 64 was already out haha

      1. Isn’t Nintendouji a Hanafuda themed game?

        Also, I thought Yokai Watch had something to do with Nintendo… Is it only Level-5?

        1. Nintendouji has nothing to do with hanafuda as far as I’m aware.
          The main character seems to use some sort of Ofuda though, which some might confuse for a card?
          And then there’s the problem that Nintendouji is a Japan-exclusive Club Nintendo only DSiware game. There’s like, virtually no chance it would ever be a playable character in Smash.
          I would love to see them expand that idea and make an actual franchise out of it though. The character had an original feel to him and I have been dying to see Nintendo make a game based on Japanese mythology/culture, which is one of the reasons I’m rooting for a modern reboot of The Mysterious Murasame Castle.

          Yokai Watch is owned and developed by Level-5, Nintendo just localized and published the game in overseas territories.

      2. They published a game developed by agenda called Clubhouse Games which had an hanafuda game (Koi-Koi).
        I played the heck out of it back then, cause it was really adictive believe it or not.

        Then they probably own it. And I’m aware that QEE isn’t making a sequel and that Shadow of the Eternals is a spiritual successor, even though the game is taking inspiration from the same exact plotline.

        Can’t even find anything about those Pocket Stories, so I can’t comment on it…

  3. This article and the last one were very, very enlightening. I didn’t know Baiten Kaitos was third party until reading this, and that The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower were both Nintendo-owned (since XCEED published both of them here in America I thought they owned them). Among other things, this is a great read and I think these two articles should be counted about as important as, say, The Definitive Unused Fighters List, or Is Sakurai a Liar.

    I could have sworn that Zip from FlingSmash was in Smash 4 as a trophy, but I guess FlingSmash isn’t anywhere in the Smash games. Huh.

    1. Yeah I did not know FlingSmash was a Nintendo IP at all until I did they #365daysofNintendo on twitter :P.

      The Last Story and Pandora’s Tower were both Nintendo outside of Japan. Although it is a different situation than Devil’s Third. The latter was in development long before Nintendo but Nintendo helped with the development of the former 2. A bit like Wonderful 101 in that sense.

  4. Great post, those two posts is something that I’ve wanted to read, but didn’t know someone would actually bother doing. I had no idea Photo Dojo was made by Nintendo, I’m surprised. I love obscure things, but the Stickers were too painful… There’s too much of them and they are not very… satisfying. (I still haven’t got all the stickers, not that I’ve really played Brawl in the last 2 years…) I hope that in the next Smash they come up with something else similar but less hard/slow to complete (you could only collect a sticker one time and using it doesn’t wastes it), I’ve always had this idea in my mind, collecting “sprites” (separated by games) that you can sticker on a character (or custom stage) to make “personal alts”, sprites are more appealing than official art for me in this case and would be easy to represent a large number of games and franchises this way, actually, that’s pretty similar to Badge Arcade…

    1. I personally think Hanafuda cards would be a good alternative to stickers. They mean something to Nintendo and can be collected just like Trophies. You could even by packs of cards in the shop much like how you buy trophies in Smash 4.

      Also, for the record, I love Photo Dojo. It had a lot of potential and I kind of wished they released one on the 3DS with an improved camera.

  5. Even if many are obscure, I was unaware that so many new IPs came out of the Wii era. Interesting!

    And it would be awesome to see Marvelous and Mole Mania receive some sort of recognition again, be it in Smash Bros, a Mario Maker costume, or otherwise. Marvelous also some rather unique history behind it, given its ties with what eventually became Four Swords Adventures for the Gamecube.

    1. I have always thought that if Aonuma ever retired from Zelda he would go back and either remake Marvelous or make a sequel. If I ever meet him that is what I want to ask him. As you said Tetra’s Trackers started off as a Marvelous game so he certainly remembers the series (and as the first game he directed I am sure it holds a special place in his heart).

  6. First off I always have to correct people who say things like ‘Splatoon is the first new Nintendo IP since Pikmin’ especially when the Wii/DS spawned a few series that became some of the best selling video game franchises of all time in the span of a single generation.

    Second off- Nintendo doesn’t fully own the Eternal Darkness series. The original devs started a kickstarter, which sadly failed, but that Nintendo was supportive of it (they own some of the mechanics because I believe Miyamoto or one of the really big creative heads at Nintendo actually suggested some of the sanity effect stuff.) I heard the company had issues and became a new company and such shortly afterwards.

    1. Oh, so they don’t fully own it like I thought and wondered about a few comments above. Interesting.
      The devs are still working on Shadow of the Eternals at QEE. Here’s the site, in case you want to see how the game has been developing. ->
      I contacted the director via Twitter a couple of months ago, but he said they had nothing to share yet, but that they still appreciate the support. Regular stuff, I guess.

    2. You see I think they do just because Nintendo has been constantly updating the copyright of Eternal Darkness for years and if they don’t then it is a franchise that disappears, I am also pretty sure that Shadows of the Eternals is NOT a sequel to Eternal Darkness. it is a spiritual successor. If it was a sequel then they would need Nintendo’s backing to make it and if that was the case it would not have been on kickstarter. Heck it probably would not have failed.

      1. If you followed the original Kickstarter they did talk about Nintendo letting them use the sanity meter and being very helpful to their team.

        You can actually look up Nintendo’s patent for the Sanity meter if you want to. It seems to be a bit of a grey area/mixed ownership when it comes to the series as a whole.

  7. I knew there were a lot of Nintendo IP but I’m surprised that it accounts to 193. It’ll be interesting to see what IP will be used in the next Smash and how. Personally I’m hoping Golden Sun will recieve better representation and my boy Isaac will finally become playable. I’d also love better representation for Splatoon, Chibi-Robo, Advance Wars and Excite

    1. As someone who loves the potential behind Golden Sun and even did an article on why Isaac should be in, I totally understand your desire to see Isaac become playable. 🙂
      I wouldn’t expect to see Chibi-Robo support increase in future entries though, because as far as we know Zip Lash didn’t do well like they wanted and the series might be shelved for now because of it…

  8. Perhaps I’m missing something, (a few games appeared on the list under titles that I’m not a familiar with) but what about Nintendoji? Isn’t that a Nintendo property?
    And also, what about Warlocked? I thought that was a second-party Nintendo franchise.

    1. Nintendoji is actually a part of the Sakura Samurai series. Same artstyle and some of the same characters, just a different protagonist.

      As for Warlocked I thought it was a Nintendo IP until I discovered that there was a sequel on GBA planned that had nothing to do with Nintendo. So its more like Devil’s Third or Culdcept.

  9. I’ve read both part 1 and 2. Great research article! You really made a lot of research on this one; great job!

    Although I may not be hoping for this character to be playable, I was still hoping that And-Kensaku should appear in Smash at least as a trophy, but I think the reason why they did not is not just only that they weren’t popular, but it was owned by Google too, so copyright issues may have been a problem. But even the game was unpopular, I actually played it and enjoyed a lot. Using search words for puzzle games, it was quite an interesting game.

    To be honest, I actually voted for Tomato Adventure’s protagonist Demille to be in Smash, and few others were supporting his entry too. But I could agree that the game wasn’t popular enough even it was an origin of the Mario & Luigi series, and it’s way too old since it’s a GBA game. Although I haven’t played the game before, Demille’s abilities is quite interesting that he uses gimmicks to fight, and I thought it may be perfect for him using it for Smash. But maybe I can hope for him on the next Smash, if Sakurai have a chance to figure out how he’ll work in Smash.

    I do remember the rabbit from the Badge Arcade was saying as a joke, that maybe he’ll appear in Smash someday. Maybe he will in the future? Who knows! (lol)

  10. That’s why I’m not a fan of third party content. I love many of Nintendo’s ignored IPs. I would love Marvelous content in Smash.

    Anyway, I have a question: are HAL Laboratory old games (before Nintendo made contracts with them) Nintendo owned? Metal Slader Glory comes to mind. It even got Virtual Console re-releases on Wii and Wii U.

    1. Nope. HAL Labratories is 100% independent but they have a very close relationship with Nintendo. But Nintendo never bought any rights to their old series. Kirby was the first series that they made combined.

    1. I didn’t know about either of these. They are both western only as well. I will need to do some more research but thanks for the head’s up

    1. Fatal Frame is not owned by Nintendo. They just published a couple of games in the series like with culdcept.

  11. No mention of Rhythm Heaven? It gets just a few things plus one random enemy in Smash Run, but it doesn’t even get a stage, which is the worst part.

    Oh, and Nintendo Land and AR Games too. All the latter gets is a music sample on Gamer, of all stages. No trophy of Mr. AR on the 3DS version.

    1. It won’t be a bias. Being a Japanese developer means it is unlikely that he has even heard of some of these IP, and if he has then getting assets from them might be harder. I mean some of those IP have never been released in Japan.

  12. If you’re still paying attention to these comments: this seemed like the most appropriate place to make this request. A list for all the IP’s each of the Big 8 own: Namco, Sega (and by extension, Atlus), Capcom, Square-Enix, EA, Activision, Ubisoft, and Take-Two (2K and Rockstar).

    If those go over well, work your down from there: Koei-Tecmo, Zenimax/Bethesda, Level-5, Deep Silver, THQ Nordic, 505, Marvelous-Xseed (lotta merged names on this list), and NIS. etc. etc.

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