Smash Presents 5.10.21: Sakurai’s Final Smash

James Warrell

James delves into the Smash Presents announcement, where director Sakurai uncovered that Sora will be the last fighter added to Super Smash Bros Ultimate. 


First and foremost, let’s get the least interesting part of this reveal out of the way: the costumes. Although the Judd and Octoling costumes are very cool, the most notable edition is the ability to dress up as the iconic Doom Guy from the Doom series.


Now moving on to the shocking (yet welcome) announcement of Sora joining Smash. Sora’s entry to Smash came via a very stylish and suspenseful cutscene that references The Subspace Emissary. This cutscene has a real Disney feel through the impeccable song choice and animation that accompanies Sora’s flight, which sets an enchanting first scene in this direct.

Sora… is a highly requested character that has been featured in many fan games                                                

Sora is the protagonist of The Kingdom of Hearts franchise, an action RPG set in a Disney world with Disney characters. Sora may not be Waluigi, but he is a highly requested character that has been featured in many fan games. Nintendo even highlighted his popularity by referencing that during the 2017 Super Smash Fighters Ballot, he apparently came first. However, this must be caveated by Sakurai saying that not all fighters would be included due to copyright issues, so I would take this with a pinch of salt.

Though Sora is certainly a popular inclusion.

Sora’s Style

Straight away, it is evident how floaty Sora is, with his focus on aerial attacks being clear from the get-go. A great double jump and recovery special, that can be used in conjuncture alongside the side special, will give him a monstrous recovery ability. The only downside to all of this is that Sora is going to be very easy to launch, drawing comparisons to Isabelle.

Sora’s standard attacks are very similar to every other Sword character, as he always does a three-move combo in a Kingdom of Hearts style. These moves will be especially useful since the first one doesn’t launch enemies whatsoever, making combos easier. On the note of combos, all of Sora’s attacks are short distance, so they are ideal for combos, but not much else.      

Next is his neutral B, which is a variety of magic that is cycled after use. There is a fire projectile designed for mid-range combat. Lightning magic is designed for long-distance. While it leaves you vulnerable (if it lands) it also creates distance, and ice magic can freeze the opponent. All of these appear above the damage gauge giving the player a clear indication of which magic is going to be used next. 

Finally, Sora’s down B is a counter and reflection, which causes the enemy to lose balance, allowing for a combo. The reflection deflects backwards, which is most effective in a group. The move could be used to great effect, with the reflection doubling the damage of the move reflected.

Sora’s Smashes

Fortunately, all of Sora’s moves feel unique. The shockwave gives Sora’s smash attacks a wider range attack. Without this shockwave, the smash would rather be bland and like any other sword user. 

Now onto Sora’s final smash, which unfortunately is a bit disappointing, but for understandable reasons. This comes from the fact that no Disney characters are used when his final smash appears, yet this is understandable due to copyright infringement.

Stage And Other Announcements

The stage, while visually stunning, feels a bit basic. The stage is basically Final Destination with a Kingdom of Hearts background. There are no unique obstacles or dynamic changes to the actual bit where you fight. It feels like a missed opportunity with the variety of enemies and areas that can be seen across Kingdom of Hearts.

definitely worth a try for anyone who likes Disney

Along with the stage, it was announced that Sora is coming to Switch, with the Kingdom of Hearts catalogue coming soon; which within itself feels like a prerequisite of getting Sora into Smash. These games have a massive following and are definitely worth a try for anyone who likes Disney.

Stylish Sakurai Smashes It Out Of The Park

it felt like a celebration

Without a doubt, this Smash Presents is one of the best there will ever be. This is all down to director Sakurai. His light-hearted style and continuous jokes kept the announcements entertaining throughout. 

During the Present, you can’t help but enjoy Sakurai’s almost childlike enthusiasm, evident in both his manner of delivery and voice. With this being Sakurai’s final dance in gaming, it felt like a celebration not just of Smash but also his career. 

Sakurai can be satisfied knowing not only that has he created a masterpiece, but that he has become a key figure in making many players lives. 

He could not have had a more stylish send-off if he tried.

James Warrell

Featured Image courtesy of Instacodez via Flickr. Image license found hereNo changes were made to this image.

In-article video 1 courtesy of @nintendo via @youtube.com. No changes were made to this video.

In-article videos 2 and 4 courtesy of @GameXplain via @youtube.com. No changes were made to these videos.

In-article video 3 courtesy of @Gamespot via @youtube.com. No changes were made to these videos.

In-article image 1 courtesy of @nintendo via @instagram.com. No changes were made to this image.

In-article image 2 courtesy of @IGN via @twitter.com. No changes were made to this image.

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