The successor to Super Smash Bros. should have personalized the ‘Goal Break’ stages

Super Smash Bros. has been a staple of the Switch library since 2018, and it’s also a standard entry in the platform’s fighting game series. The game was promoted on the “everyone is here” premise that saw every character since the original N64 version brought back along with newcomers like Simon Belmont and King K. Rool. After 12 DLC characters participated Smash Ultimate, the list rounded off with 82 fighters – and that’s not to mention the range of stages, tracks, Spirits, and Mii Fighter costumes that represent the other games.

Now it has been confirmed that Super Smash Bros. is receiving its final update, which means the journey is almost over for director Masahiro Sakurai and his team. Various updates since 2018 have added additional types of content to Smash Ultimate, most notably perhaps the Stage Builder. However, not every former fan-favorite mode is returning Supreme, leaving the possibility for anything Smash Bros. follow-up game to bring back the traditional “Break the Targets” experience.


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The way the game of Smash Bros. have personalized breakthrough goals

smash bros melee mario break the goal

The first iteration of Break the Targets appeared in 1999 Super Smash Bros. on N64, and the feature of the mode is quite simple: The player must destroy all the targets scattered in a platformed obstacle as quickly as possible. What makes this concept special is that all 12 characters from the original game feature unique levels with layouts that showcase each warrior’s technique. Completing Break the Targets with all eight original characters is also required to unlock Luigi.

Super Smash Bros. Super Smash Bros. perhaps the most iconic form of this game mode, then named “Target Test”, thanks to the energetic and piano-filled theme song. Again, each character stage is unique and has more references. Example: An Ice Climber’s target test shaped like a mountain top with a Sacred Treasure at the top, Mr. Game & Watch has a stage that takes place in a Game equipment & watches, and Luigi’s stage includes a physical GameCube at the center.

When Super Smash Bros. around, Break the Targets became “Target Smash”, and it lost a lot of its personality. There are five levels for the player to take on regardless of character, each with their own aesthetic and goal layout. Super Smash Bros. 4 (on both the 3DS and Wii U) introduced a new concept-based spin called “Target Blast” that works more like a Home-Run Contest. The player must smash a bomb so that it can fly into blocks with the same structure and target as a bomb classic Angry bird stage. However, a simplified version of Target Smash can appear in Smash Run mode with only three variations.

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Why Traditional Target Break Should Return to Smash

full final smash bros

Breaking the goal takes away a lot of the personality that is meaningful to the game added more characters with unique abilities, so it becomes harder and potentially more space-consuming to get into the target stage specifically designed for every fighter. Beat 4Target Blast’s introduced an interesting pacing as it didn’t bring characters of different skill sets into the same number of platform levels as with QuarrelHit the target’s. However, the next game should consider reverting to a more traditional format.

It is unlikely to be a successor Super Smash Bros. will bring every fighter back, as going that route can render factors like game balance unmanageable. If the list were to be cut down, it would be more feasible to develop unique Break the Targets stages the same way every time. Smash Ultimate Fighters have their own Classic mode. While the latest game’s Classic mode is mostly a series of battles with varying enemy conditions, it shows the development team’s willingness to create personalized content.

Reviving Break the Targets isn’t just smart as it gives more personality to each fighter. How stages were designed in the original N64 and Melee combat also let them act as soft guides for each fighter’s moves and background abilities. Players can always practice against NPCs if they want, but tying that practice to a mini-game with its own score system and potential rewards is a much more appealing prospect. With games like Nickelodeon All-Star Brawl and MultiVersus looking to create space in the platform fighting genre, Smash Bros. Sticking with more unique party modes will also help the series continue to stand out.

Super Smash Bros. Now available on Nintendo Switch.

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