Sakurai, Part 3: Designing Games with Variety

Eight games in one! That was the tagline for Kirby Super Star, Sakurai's third game, and the first one to include smaller games with widely different styles. This has become a staple of his design philosophy ever since. Opening up a game and seeing a sprawling menu has become his calling card. Sakurai flirted around … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 3: Designing Games with Variety

Sakurai, Part 2: Designing Complex Games

Let's imagine video games as theme park rides. Many of the intense ones have a height requirement in order to protect young kids from getting hurt. In a similar fashion, most video games, in order to get much enjoyment out of them, have a "height requirement" in skill. It's true that many games teach you … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 2: Designing Complex Games

Sakurai, Part 1: Designing Accessible Games

As we begin diving into Sakurai's works, our first point of discussion is perhaps what he's best known for: games that anyone can easily learn and enjoy. Sakurai labeled this design philosophy as Kirbyism. His flagship series, Kirby and Super Smash Bros., are superb entry-level games not just for their respective genres, but for anyone … Continue reading Sakurai, Part 1: Designing Accessible Games

Masahiro Sakurai: The Man Behind Smash Bros.

Shoutout to my wife for making this watercolor! For those who don't get the reference, Sakura are cherry blossoms, related to the name Sakurai. And Hanami is the time of year you can see the cherry blossoms (around this time of year), so I changed it to Hanakirby. My friend has a podcast called CineMusts … Continue reading Masahiro Sakurai: The Man Behind Smash Bros.

The Importance of Nintendo’s Character Design

Happy 20th Birthday to Super Smash Bros.! Nintendo has had an uncanny ability to make beloved franchises that last not just for years, but for decades and even generations. Their mascots like Mario, Pikachu, and Link adorn most store electronics sections. They've become synonymous with gaming in general. And while other companies have done similar … Continue reading The Importance of Nintendo’s Character Design

So I Got to Play Super Smash Bros Ultimate…

I already had a post scheduled for today, but then something unexpected happened this weekend. The Best Buy in Bellevue, Washington offered a promotion to let us normies play Super Smash Bros Ultimate, so you bet your Bells I took the opportunity! It was glorious. I think the demo we played was the E3 build, … Continue reading So I Got to Play Super Smash Bros Ultimate…

My Top 10 Most Wanted Smash Bros. Assist Trophies

The more they reveal, the greedier I get. You'd think having all this Smash Bros fan service with Ridley, Dark Samus, and King K. Rool would satisfy me, but it's doing exactly the opposite. Before this recent direct I was happy knowing that not everything I wanted will come into the game. But literally everything … Continue reading My Top 10 Most Wanted Smash Bros. Assist Trophies