Nickelodeon All-Stars Brawl was recently announced, and everything about the trailer suggests that it is meant to be Super Smash Bros. with Nicktoons.
What began as a normal July day suddenly got an unexpected surprise as Nickelodeon announced Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl out of the blue. No one was expecting Nickelodeon to so closely imitate Nintendo’s ever-popular Super Smash Bros. series. And yet, from the look of the platform-like levels to the presentation of the individual fighters’ move sets, Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl very much appears to be Smash for Nickelodeon’s brand of cartoons. Brawl was even the title of the Wii’s iteration for Super Smash Bros.
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is not Nickeldeon’s first foray into gaming, though perhaps it’s meant as a 30th anniversary nod to the Nicktoon. Nickelodeon’s many cartoon hits have been a pop culture staple ever since the fateful night in 1991 when Rugrats, Doug, and Ren & Stimpy premiered. Over the subsequent thirty years, Nicktoons continued to garner mainstream success, particularly with SpongeBob SquarePants. The company certainly has no shortage of material for a Smash-style brawler.
The news comes at an opportune time as well. Super Smash Bros. Ultimate director Masahiro Sakurai recently announced that the final fighter for Super Smash Bros. Ultimate will be announced by the end of the year. While Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl definitely isn’t a replacement for Smash Bros., but it definitely fulfills one wish that Sakurai has explicitly said is out of the question for Smash Bros.: it incorporates TV characters, even if an admittedly narrow subset of them.
Nickelodeon All-Stars Brawl Is Smash With SpongeBob
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl‘s stages appear to be set up very similar to Smash Bros.‘s. Some even follow Smash Bros.‘s tried-and-true format of large stage with three smaller platforms in a triangular arrangement overhead. Others appear to be built for optimum befuddlement – not unlike certain Smash Bros. stages. Plus, fighters appear to be able to knock each other off of these platforms, hang off the edge, or hit through higher ones.
Click here to see the above trailer on YouTube.
Even the fighters themselves have several Smash Bros. parallels. Each character seems like they will have a unique move set, and if Reptar’s presence is any indication, weight will likely factor into their play styles. Additionally, Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl has wisely chosen to favor its long history instead of leaning on more recent characters. Powdered Toast Man (from Ren & Stimpy) may seem as obscure as Mr. Game & Watch to many, but his presence shows an interest in Nickelodeon’s larger legacy. In fact, the large number of nostalgic characters (and Nigel Thornberry, himself often the subject of millennial memes) makes one wonder if Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl‘s target audience is millennials.
Every detail from the trailer indicates Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl is meant to be Super Smash Bros. with Nicktoons. The final Super Smash Bros. fighter might disappoint some fans, but two Ninja Turtles is a good compromise. This isn’t the first time developer GameMill has remade a Nintendo party game with Nickelodeon characters, either, as Nickelodeon Kart Racers is also an obvious nod to Mario Kart. Be that as it may, in the immortal words of Nigel Thornberry, Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl looks “smashing.“
Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl Is a Nostalgic, Smash Bros-Inspired Fighter
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