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Friday, November 14, 2014

Super Smash Bros. 4 Newcomers and their Trailers Tier List *Updated 11/15/14*

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - A tier list of... the trailers and hype, not based off peak competitive metagame potential.

We now have seen the trailers for every new character in Super Smash Bros. 4, and even a trailer of a returning character. It is time to... grade them! And give my thoughts on them all! Based on the following criteria:

Relevant KoopaTV article(s):
Thoughts on the character before reveal:
Thoughts on the trailer:
Thoughts on the character based on trailer:
Thoughts on the character after the game came out:

That enough boldness for you? Let's go! (Hah, like you thought I could resist internal linking.)


Relevant KoopaTV article(s):
Ludwig's Live Reactions to Nintendo's E3 Presentation

Thoughts on the character before reveal: I had no thoughts at all. I didn't think he'd be in. But honestly, if you asked me before E3 2013 if I wanted the generic Villager as playable, I would've said no. 2/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Well, it's not really Villager's trailer per se. He kind of has to share the moment with Super Smash Bros. 4 being announced in general. That said, man was it a great trailer. We all thought the new theme was SO cool, especially compared to Brawl's. 7/10!
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Villager only really got 15 seconds or so of action, but hey, I approve of him capturing that plumber and siding with King Dad. Villager has a ton of moves shown off here anyway, along with making people think that Miis would never be in the game. Really though, Villager wasn't shown off all that well. 3/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Villager became my favourite character in the Super Smash Bros. For 3DS demo (out of him, Mario, Link, Mega Man, and Pikachu). The Pocket is one of the coolest moves in the entire game, after all. Gyroid combos are also cool, if you hit someone while on the Gyroid you bounce off and get to attack more with things like your projectile aerial Slingshot. And the Tree attack is brilliant. And Villager can just use his Axe at that point, which people quickly caught onto after he was shown to make memes out of it. 8/10, good addition!

Mega Man

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Ludwig's Live Reactions to Nintendo's E3 Presentation and Why do people think Capcom should be allowed anywhere near Smash Bros.?

Thoughts on the character before reveal: I argued with Rawk a lot concerning Mega Man, and of course I disagreed with the premise of his article you see above. Mega Man is awesome, and Capcom is sadly neglecting the guy. To the point where I totally wrote off his chances of being in Super Smash Bros. 4, thinking that we'd only see him in a Nintendo cast in a dedicated "Nintendo Vs. Capcom" game or something. I'm pretty happy to be a Mega Man fan, though, and it all pretty much came from one summer where I downloaded all of the Mega Man games on the Wii Virtual Console and played straight through 'em. 9.5/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: As seems typical with these trailers so far, that plumber is getting destroyed by the newcomers. We thought that the music in Villager's trailer was amazing... but this? This is the Dr. Wily's Castle stage! That's one of the most highly-esteemed songs in videogames! This trailer is unique in that it actually shows the newcomer getting his ass kicked at first (the other trailers start with the newcomers immediately kicking ass), but then he starts using his acquired powers and dominates his oppressors, one by one. And you can't help but root for Mega Man as a result. The guy is an underdog both within this game and his own company. Really touching, and also hype. 8.5/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Mega Man is showing off all of his powers there, and it makes you wonder how he can have so many awesome varied moves but only 4 B moves! People thought there would be some sort of Variable Weapon System mechanic with Mega Man that could allow him to switch between all those moves (which didn't happen, but we did get Custom Moves) and the speculation was on. 7.5/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: And... this is where the disappointment settles in. Well, starting with the positive: Mega Man gets very unique custom move variations for someone who isn't a Mii or Lady Palutena. Possibly the 3rd most unique set of customs in the game, and it's really exciting. But... actually playing as Mega Man? Boy, does he have some issues. He is very hard to play with properly, with his neutral-air, jab, and forward-tilt all just shooting his pellets. Usually someone's forward-tilt is a ranged, relatively fast "get away" move, but with Mega Man, it's not really helpful. As a result, the guy isn't good in close-quarters. Even worse, Mega Man easily has the worst set of default special moves in the game, which makes him very bad to play with in settings that do not allow custom movesets! Leaf Shield wins the worst special move of the game! It's... very disappointing. 4.5/10.

Wii Fit Trainer

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Steer Clear of Egalitarian Approaches

Thoughts on the character before reveal: This goes without saying: A complete surprise. Fun fact: I have Wii Fit and the female Wii Fit Trainer was my trainer. ...But I didn't think of her as anything but a creepy mannequin. 2/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Mario gets wrecked once again, and we see his balance isn't good. Um, other than that... there isn't really anything interesting going on here besides the shock value. 4/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Um, so she does a bunch of yoga moves? What is she doing in this game? We really don't see much of her, and half of her playtime is used doing a weird Final Smash. 3/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Male Wii Fit Trainer does not help things. Yuck. Anyway, now that we have Wii Fit Trainer using Sun Salutation and things, she's a bit better. I haven't really played as her much, though. She's a little... awkward for me? Yeah. Poor series didn't even get a stage in the 3DS version. I dunno, I still don't think anything of her... I don't hate that she's in, but she's just so... meh. 3.5/10.

Sonic the Hedgehog

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's 10/1/13 Nintendo Direct LIVE Reactions and Ludwig's Thoughts on October Direct 2013

Thoughts on the character before reveal: I did not think Sonic should have been in Brawl. And I was really hoping he would not come back. 1/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Why the hell does Sonic even get a trailer? He is NOT EVEN A NEWCOMER. One point for Sonic Heroes for absolutely no reason. 1/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Sonic looks exactly the same as he did in Brawl, and his moveset there was horrible. All of his moves were the same as one another! 1/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Sonic's moves changed slightly, but his B moves still don't make sense. SONIC BOOM was nerfed, I guess. It's also now the name of a really terrible game. Sonic is still gross and still shouldn't have come back. And he brought Green Hill Zone back from Brawl with him, too. Yuck. Sonic go back to your trash bin. 1/10.

Rosalina and Luma

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KOOPATV'S 12/18/13 NINTENDO DIRECT LIVE REACTIONS

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Um, Rosalina? That princess from Super Mario Galaxy? Yeah, whatever. Thought nothing of her, and I don't think anything good of Super Mario Galaxy either. 3.5/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Phenomenal trailer. If you look at those live reactions, we all thought it was "Kirby Air Ride 2", which... would have made us so happy. Still, the Kirby-Luma interaction is amazingly adorable, and spawned some great art. 9.5/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Wow, did they make Rosalina and Luma look amazing here. Besides the obvious cuteness going on (such as Rosalina and Luma at the boxing ring), they look like a great team. Luma protecting Rosalina when she is in danger, and look! THEY'RE DOING COMBOS TOGETHER. Rosalina's Down-B vs. plumber's FLUDD also looked great, and her Down-B just looked amazing in general. She clearly demonstrated that she would have a high skill ceiling in this trailer. She also made sure we knew she would be different than fellow princesses Peach and Zelda. We also all wondered if the differently-coloured Lumas would do anything special. (They don't.) Kirby was clearly happy about Rosalina's inclusion, and so were we. 8.5/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Well, now Rosalina is thought to be the best character in the game, which some people thought would happen when her trailer came out. (But people think that of every newcomer's trailer, really.) We dunno if that'll stay. Meanwhile, her high skill ceiling is out of my reach, and she's absolutely horrifying to play against since she can destroy everyone I play as. As it stands, Luma regenerates way too quickly, and a good Rosalina can easily stall you for the 7 seconds or whatever until Luma comes back if you knock it out. 6/10.

Little Mac

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Ludwig's Smash 4 Wishlist and Come PLAY Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! *Updated With Strategy Guides* and Welcome to Smash 4, Mac Baby!

Thoughts on the character before reveal: You can see in those linked articles that prior to Little Mac's reveal, we had Punch-Out!! week, the only week on KoopaTV specifically dedicated (with its own unique BANNER) to a specific game series. Part of that was writing that Little Mac was on the top of my wish list. That week ended with the launch of Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!!, making Little Mac the protagonist of KoopaTV as a whole. What, you think I'M the protagonist? Little Mac is pure in intentions. I'm more like the KoopaTV villain. Everything I do is for a nefarious, radical agenda! Anyway, Little Mac and Smash Bros. are even referenced together in Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!!, which, again, was made before he was revealed. Little Mac could not have been thought of in more positive terms! 10/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Unfortunately, KoopaTV was on hiatus during the month of February when the trailer was revealed. Still, the art style for the first minute is unique to this trailer and worked amazingly. Doc Louis is also a very awesome character, and having him basically narrate the whole trailer? Along with an awesome Punch-Out!! remix in the background? And a reference to the Samus-Mac rivalry from the DOJO!!? You cannot get better than this. 10/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Sakurai manipulated our thoughts of Mac here. Look how quickly his KO meter rises! That KO meter terrified people from the trailer. One, because it meant no Star Punch. Two, because LOOK HOW FAST IT WENT UP AND IT'S AN INSTANT KO! Of course, there is also Mac's amazing super armour in the trailer, and him literally dashing under that plumber's fireballs. Mac looked spectacular, and he really put in the training between his Assist Trophy days in Brawl and finally being playable. And for the first time, I was uncontrollably EXCITED to want to play a Smash 4 newcomer. Sure, Doc Louis said he isn't an air fighter, but he can't be that bad, right? 10/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Well. Everyone else on the planet seems to hate Little Mac because of how often he is used in For Glory. (Don't hate the character personally, please!) Yet I still love the dude and am going to get his Amiibo. And we're also going to re-enact Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! on Super Smash Bros. For Wii U. Anyway, let's make things clear: There is a big, big difference between bad Little Macs and great Little Macs. Bad Macs play him as a rushdown character. Good ones play him like how he is in his own series: Bait a mistake from your opponent, and then pummel them. Doc Louis really wasn't exaggerating when he was bashing Mac's air fighting skills. He just feels so helpless in the air, and his aerial attacks feel like you're slapping someone with a napkin. In return, on the ground? He feels incredibly satisfying, and landing a KO punch (which builds up slowly, does not instantly KO no matter what, and is hard to land) is even more amazing to the player than landing Jigglypuff's Rest or a Falcon Punch. Little Mac's matches are very fast-paced and are also very match-up dependent, since some characters straight-up demolish Little Mac and there is nothing he can do about it. Anyway, it turns out that Mac does not need to steal the moves of the other boxers from his series to have a fresh, original moveset. Keep that sentiment in mind. 9/10.

Greninja and Charizard

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's SMASH DIRECT Live Reactions and I'm Sick of Charizard

Thoughts on the characters before reveal: Here we have two characters in one. Well, I hate Charizard. Simple as that, and already wrote about it. I actually played as Pokémon Trainer extensively in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, and it was only for Ivysaur and Squirtle. As for Greninja? Well, uh, I chose Chespin. I... had no exposure to Greninja prior, really. Charizard gets a 1/10, and Greninja gets a 4/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Another great trailer. Bonus points for Greninja making people think he's Mewtwo. We see all of the Poké Ball Pokémon in the game, Charizard roar, and then the Smash Bros. cast run after Charizard as if he's the focus of the trailer. Red Pikmin's failure was funny, of course. And then... SNAP! Greninja interrupts it, and we see the REAL focus. The Pokémon XY battle music in the background makes the trailer intense, and good that it follows the music. The trailer follows up on the Mega Lucario revealed earlier in the Direct as he makes a brief appearance, and you get the impression that we're never going to get another Pokémon-based trailer after this. Fine by me. So for being intense and having continuity with the Direct, this gets a good score! 9/10.
Thoughts on the characters based on trailer: Well, Charizard is the same, except for Mega-Evolving and getting Flare Blitz. Whatever. Greninja though? He looks cool! More than just a watery Sheik. That Substitute was AWESOME and impressive. Guy looked really fluid (as a water-based Pokémon should be!) Shadow Sneak wasn't really shown off though, at least for what it ended up being. Greninja had to share the spotlight, so he actually didn't look as cool as some other characters. Charizard: 4/10. Greninja: 6/10.
Thoughts on the characters after the game came out: Shadow Sneak is pretty cool to pull off, but Greninja is sort of bland otherwise. Charizard does nothing but spam Flare Blitz, and Rock Smash being Down-B is weird. Sorry, not much detail here. Charizard: 4/10. Greninja: 5/10.

Mii Fighter

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's Nintendo E3 2014 LIVE REACTIONS! and Why Not Just Have All the Characters Be Miis, Miiyamoto? and Mark Block's Birthday Block Party

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Um? Miis? In Super Smash Bros.? Those aren't even real characters. This is supposed to be a bunch of Nintendo all-stars! Miis are literally nobodies. 2/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Miis don't even have a real trailer, according to the official website. That said, dat Abraham Lincoln. Is that even in the above video? N/A.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Well... uh... it's exactly what you'd expect. Except there are three varieties, so that's pretty original. Still, besides being Lincoln or Iwata or Reggie, they don't really belong. And Sakurai even acknowledges that. And we immediately realized that people can say, "Hey, that character doesn't need to be in! Just make a Mii!" which has both bad and good components to it. 4/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Honestly, I haven't really been using or making Mii Fighters. Could be because I'm bad at making Miis. But they are still critical to the re-enactment to Trayvon Tyson's Punch-Out!! that will happen, and hey, Mark Block is in the game now. But seriously, they are "different" than the other characters, and them basically stealing the movesets of other characters doesn't sit right. I'm happy they're banned in non-friend multiplayer. They can actually be really broken. Anyway, I don't need a Mii to play as myself in this game, so I don't need a self-insert! 4.5/10.

Lady Palutena

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Ludwig's Smash 4 Wishlist and KoopaTV's Nintendo E3 2014 LIVE REACTIONS!

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Lady Palutena was also in my wishlist. She was also in my top 10 favourite characters who were in the GameFAQs Character Battle IX. (Well, so was Mega Man.) Kid Icarus: Uprising was my favourite 3DS game before she was revealed, and Lady Palutena is a large part of that. 9.5/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: It features Pit and Link fighting with awesome Kid Icarus: Uprising music, and then Lady Palutena rescues him. ...And Lady Palutena immediately asserts her authority over Pit. Oh, and Dark Pit shows up at the end, foreshadowing his appearance later. 8/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: If you thought Mega Man had access to way too many moves from his trailer, well, here is Lady Palutena with a ton of moves as well! And she says what they are before she does them, which is sweet. Sakurai proved that Lady Palutena could have a huge moveset that is different than other characters, and she has that staff, too. ...oh and she's hot. 9/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Well... despite all of the massive amounts of affection for Lady Palutena following her trailer and before her reveal, it turns out that she's... underwhelming in practice. In the "sometimes I forget she's in the game" sense. That's never good. Only being able to use 4 of those 12 moves per match is a damper, but even moreso that she cannot switch moves if custom movesets aren't allowed! That removes her entire gimmick! 6/10.


Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Live Reaction to: PAC-MAN IN SMASH 4! and Could Smash 4's Newcomers Be Terrible? and What do Pac-Man and Hillary Clinton Have In Common? and Smashing in 3D - Impressions of Super Smash Brothers for Nintendo 3DS

Thoughts on the character before reveal: As you can tell from articles from multiple authors on this site before Pac-Man's reveal, we absolutely, ABSOLUTELY opposed his inclusion. He was only ever considered because Namco was code-monkeying the game. If HAL Laboratory or some other Nintendo studio was doing the brunt of the work, he would've never been in. Pac-Man has done nothing for Nintendo at any point in time besides be a failure. 0/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Despite it being weird that blue is represented by two characters but is the same width as the other colours... well... the trailer was ugly. Especially the Pac-Land stage. The trailer's theme also represents that Pac-Man is only "important" because of other characters already being in the game, not because of his own merits. Also, there is no CGI in the trailer besides the end, and that's... you know, "so what?" Pac-Man's trailer wasn't even shown to the public — it was shown to a private roundtable. That shows how much confidence they had in Pac-Man. 0/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Well, he certainly looked boring in this trailer, relying on kicks... and a fire hydrant? And throwing Namco shit. Yup. Pac-Man had to rely on other series and characters to bolster his moveset. (Remember what I said to remember in Little Mac's section?) Pac-Man almost made Nintendo lose E3. 0/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: I am going to dedicate a future article just to this topic alone. Spoiler alert: 0/10.

Robin and Lucina

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): Chrom Has Been FIRED From KoopaTV!

Thoughts on the characters before reveal: I didn't even know who these dudes were. Lucina is at least easy on the eyes and is not Chrom. Lucina: 4/10. Robin: 3/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Absolutely brilliant trailer, mostly because of Captain Falcon being amazing and Chrom being absolutely humiliated. See that linked article for why this holds such a special meaning to me and KoopaTV! Also, "which is why I carry my Levin Sword!" Ike also got blue flames. 9.5/10.
Thoughts on the characters based on trailer: Uh... Lucina is a Marth clone? Another one...? Anyway, so Robin. Robin has that inventory management you see in the trailer. (Hence why he carries his Levin Sword.) Fortunately, Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance and Fire Emblem: Radiant Dawn (and the Fire Emblem on the GBA with Hector) gave me more than enough experience to recognize all of Robin's tomes. Robin looked complicated and probably rewarding, although there isn't really a gauge of strength to judge him on since he didn't spend the trailer stream-rolling people. (After all, he only tied at best with Captain Falcon.) So he didn't get much hype. Lucina: 4/10. Robin: 4/10.
Thoughts on the characters after the game came out: I figured out after the trailer that Lucina is Chrom's daughter. Gross. She also doesn't really have a reason to be in the game. As for Robin... at least I've played against him a bit. His Levin Sword down-smash is really good! It's annoying because Jigglypuff can't really touch the guy. Yeah. Oh, and female Robin is a thing but I don't care about her. Lucina: 3.5/10. Robin: 4/10.


Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's August 29 Japanese Nintendo Direct Live Reactions! and Shulk The Pokémon and Shulk Is Really Feeling The Exclusivity

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Yeah, I have no Xenoblade Chronicles knowledge. And if you look at that last linked article, I clearly still don't have any. I just know Shulk is British and his voice-actor kept babbling that he was going to be in the game, or something. 3.5/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: This trailer is really why I separated the trailer rating and the character from trailer rating. This trailer was extremely well-done, between the CGI and the Xenoblade Chronicles music. The alternative future thing with Link and Marth crushing Shulk was cool. 9/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Despite how amazing the trailer looked... Shulk still looked like a generic swordsman from it who yelled different attributes out like a weirdo. Also, he literally attacked my dad for no reason. That was pretty much my first impression of the guy. He's a complete asshole. 1/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Okay, so... now Shulk is still an asshole and I won't get over the fact he assaulted King Dad. He's also complicated to use, and as I wrote in the second of the relevant articles in this section, the colours he uses for his Monado contradict the stat-colour association that the game pushes on you otherwise. And I STILL don't know if Purple increases knockback or if that's the damage-increasing one. So now Shulk exists to make "I'm really feeling it!" jokes and to shake my claws at. At least he brings good music. 3.5/10.

Ludwig Von Koopa (and 7 other Koopas)

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's Live Reactions To Smash Wii U's 50-Fact Extravaganza! and Ludwig's Smash Bros. Wii U Post-Thoughts, Speculation, and APOLOGIES! and pretty much every page on KoopaTV is relevant if you think about it.

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Um. It's me. (Let's ignore the other guys.) 10/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: Mario gets wrecked (again. ...I wish Shulk was in this too so we could get revenge on him), and the trailer is pretty much Koopas dominating non-Koopas. I'm okay with the implied species superiority. Oh, and we all get to look really cool. Unfortunately, Sakurai doesn't like me...And WAY too much Bowser Jr. for a trailer dedicated to, you know, me. 9.5/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: (So I gotta pretend that the trailer was released before the game came out for this and the next? Okay...) Uh... so I look GREAT. ...Even though all I do is like, one Down-Smash. Yeah. So I'm pretty much bound to the Koopa Klown Kar, which is fine. It's nice and comfy. 8/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: I try to main myself along with King Dad, Jigglypuff, and Little Mac. There is still a big skill gap between the pair of Jigglypuff and King Dad and the pair of myself and Little Mac, but I want to close it. I'm gimmicky to play as, but that's fine. I really like my Side-B and Down-B, but the cannonball move is kinda crappy. ...And Kirby looks super weird when Copying it. STILL. IT'S ME. 9/10.

Duck Hunt

Relevant KoopaTV article(s): KoopaTV's November 5 2014 Nintendo Direct LIVE REACTIONS!

Thoughts on the character before reveal: Before we knew Duck Hunt was in the game... well, the idea they would be in was absurd. Interesting, but absurd. Not totally unheard of like Wii Fit Trainer, though. 3/10.
Thoughts on the trailer: We always like when trailers synchronize with music. And hey, it was informative in showing the mysterious Zapper user. Got some humour too. That's pretty much it. Cranky Kong is NOT Donkey Kong. 6/10.
Thoughts on the character based on trailer: Well, hey, it's chaotic Duck Hunt. Doing all sorts of explosion-y stuff. Not really informative in showing Duck Hunt's potential, though. 5/10.
Thoughts on the character after the game came out: Duck Hunt is the master projectile war character, with like... three of those and really ranged Smash attacks. Duck Hunt also has that pseudo-Banjo Kazooie thing going on, and can be played all sorts of ways. Fun mutt. No 8-bit laugh taunt, though. 6.5/10.


I'm not going to really comment on if I like the roster overall. I pretty much got who I wanted, and then some. Sure, it means that some really trashy characters also got in, but their negatives don't outstrip the positives.


Super Smash Bros. 4 Newcomer characters and trailers tier list.
Thanks, Excel.

You can comment on YOUR thoughts on the characters! If you want Ludwig to do some Excel statistical analysis on his numbers, feel free to ask.

For another tier list Ludwig has made regarding characters and audiovisual productions, see this one based off their television shows.
This can also be related, since it covers the Super Smash Bros. cast.
This is the future article dedicated to just Pac-Man.
SEQUEL to this article, featuring the DOWNLOADABLE CHARACTERS! 


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