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Generally favorable reviews- based on 1455 Ratings

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  1. Sep 23, 2010
    The commercial and critical success of this game is proof that you could slap Mario's face on the cover of "DESTROY YOUR WII IN ONE EASY STEP" and it'd sell like gangbusters. This game is a slap in the face to truly fantastic multiplayer action titles without half the name recognition.
  2. Jul 25, 2011
    Loved the new characters, stages and game modes, but the multiplayer, by itself, earned this game a zero. Now, any player, no matter how bad, can recover from devastating attacks, break combos, due to "tripping," and keep up with more competent players because of brawls painfully slow frame rate. Also, why did they take out wavedashing and L-canceling? If you dont know what either of those are go buy melee and figure it out. Expand
  3. Apr 19, 2013
    As someone who got many hours of multiplayer gaming heaven out of Melee, I was very happy to hear about how Nintendo intended to amp the next in the series.

    I'm not going to repeat the points you have heard generally, yes it is fantastic, a fantastic roster, Melee's returning "clone characters" fleshed out and some great stages. It's worth buying on these alone.

    The Subspace Emissary
    was a great idea on paper, but missed a trick by not taking the concept beyond some flash CG cutscenes. The bits inbetween involve standard matches and low end 80's platforming. Considering that it has key characters from the platform genre's hayday, you'd think they'd add more elements inspired by the roster of characters, maybe even some original ideas.

    The biggest let down is the Online modes that are promised by Nintendo, put simply I have not had a single match since I am forever waiting for the service to match me up with other players. I have had the game since launch and still nothing... which is made worse if you have experienced how well Mario Kart Wii Online has hand this.

    To sum up, the game is excellent, Subspace Emissary is a dull missed opertunatey, the fantastic multiplayer still isn't broke and the online equivalent is, unless Nintendo see fit to sort it out, which maybe unlikely since they knowingly sold it in this state after having the very same problem in Japan and the US.

    I know there will be fans who won't like this when I say it, heck I'm suprised I'm saying it, but this game really is the definition of flawed genious. This game and it's publisher come from a good pedigree, but don't take everyone's word for it that it's a classic, the hype was definately a step beyond a product that European gamers were made to wait for, which is why I scored it 2 stars overall.
  4. Mar 26, 2011
    It's just a Button-Masher, it takes up to 18 hours to unlock only about 5/2# unlockable charcters BLAH BLAH BLAH.

    Terrible, Button-Masher, takes bloody hours to unlock chars, ECT ECT.

    1 interesting thing is Co-Op campaign, which is fun for about 2 1/2 hours, after that you'll all be fighting over the lives and conducting friendly fire on purpose because your target didn't bring the cheetos.
  5. Jun 4, 2011
    Brawl is all fluff. While it's great to see lots of new characters, stages, and options, what truly makes a Smash Bros game is, let's face it, the gameplay. The Wii is a family oriented platform, and Brawl follows suit. It is easy to pick up and play, and even a new player can keep up with someone who has put lots of time into the game. Now that's great if you're a new player, but for fans who put time in it would be nice to be able to perfect a fighting style similar to what was possible in Melee. Overall, Brawl is just a soft game. Controls lag, hits don't feel satisfying, gameplay is slow - it is the non-gamer version of Melee, with loads of gratification for the newbies, enough new features to trick real gamers into buying it, and plenty of disappointment when those same gamers realize they spent $50 on what amounts to an amorphous blob of dumbed down game design. I'll stick with Melee and the original SSB. I recommend the same to anyone who considers themselves a gamer. Expand
  6. Aug 7, 2011
    I don't know if I can describe how bad this game seems to me. I've played it both solo and in groups, and it just bores me to death. I liked multiplayer brawling games like this in the likes of Powerstone back in the day, but the entire feel, control-scheme, environments, and mechanics of the wntire Smash Bros. series feels like a terrible joke. It's like Monty Python invaded Nintendo and came out with the most ridiculous fighting game parody ever conceived. Is that what people like about it? I don't know, but it's charm is definitely lost on me. Expand
  7. Jul 1, 2013
    The sheer amount of time we had already invested in Melee was definitely partly to blame for our lack of interest. After all, Brawl didn’t showcase the same jump in features and spectacle that Melee had over the original game on the N64. It was, by and large, pretty similar to Melee, and lacked the novelty of its predecessor. However, after mulling it over in my head over the course of a couple of months, I decided that Brawl was, in my mind at least, a worse game than Melee. Still, my reasoning behind this opinion often differed from the reasoning of forum-goers and commenters across the internet (it is largely regarded that Melee is the superior game, at least as far as depth of gameplay goes). Many users complained about the dumbing-down of competitive play through the removal of certain advanced techniques, such as wave dashing, or L-canceling. However, this didn’t really apply to my friends and me: none of us had ever even attempted to wave dash, nor was the lowering of a skill-ceiling something which would effect our play with one another. Indeed, to be fair, some of the techniques that were removed appeared to depend on the exploitation of unintended design flaws.

    Now, by no means was Brawl a bad game in fact, it’s very good, and well worth checking out at the very least. However, it’s by no means perfect, and in some respects, worse than its prequel. For the sake of clarity and convenience, my contentions with the game will be presented in list form.

    1. The Subspace Emissary sucked. The Subspace Emissary was made out to be the Story mode option of Brawl, as well as a replacement for the Adventure mode of Melee. It boasts gorgeous CG cutscenes featuring the Brawl cast, as well as boss battles against well-known franchise villains, such as Petey Piranha and Ridley. Unfortunately, that’s about all it has going for it. The story was threadbare, the level design was repetitive and bland, the gameplay was monotonous, and it ultimately felt like a chore that had to be slogged through in order to unlock content for other modes. Embarrassingly, Melee’s Adventure mode remains a much more enjoyable and interesting experience overall, despite only lasting the guts of about 20 minutes on each run, whereas Subspace Emissary gives a play time of about 10 hours, give or take. Disc space and development time that could have been given over to other game modes was instead used up by this lackluster option. I’d like to see either a return to a short Adventure-style game mode in the sequel, or go the full hog and give each character their own short story mode la every fighting game ever interspersed with a little dialogue, the odd boss fight and bookended by some mini-cutscenes. Trying to fit the entirety of the 30-strong cast into a single story appears to be a futile and messy task, filled with compromise.

    2. Cloned characters. Wolf, Falco, and Fox. Ganondorf and Captain Falcon. Toon Link and Adult Link. I have no problem with characters sharing certain elements of their playstyle with one another, but Brawl had seven characters that were practically model swaps of one another. I’m adamant in my belief that characters absolutely must have their own individual special moves. Now, I know adding cloned characters takes less effort/time/money than developing a whole new addition to the cast, but I’d happily sacrifice three clones or a game mode for an extra “true” character or two. Imagine replacing Toon/Young Link with Fierce Deity Link instead: give him a slower, stronger set of moves and movements to suit his huge, double-helix sword, maybe the ability to fire projectile discs from it somewhat similar to Link’s regular ol’ Bow n’ Arrow combo, but perhaps faster and with a shorter range. Drop the clones, and instead incorporate fresh characters with their own mechanics and tactics to be mastered.

    3. Level design
    Brawl was plagued with simplistic, symmetrical levels. So many of the levels featured in the game were made up of little more than a few small platforms hovering over one larger one. “But that’s all any Smash Bros. game has ever done,” I hear you cry! Nonsense my good fellows, nonsense. Let’s take Onett from Melee for want of an example. Here, there are platforms, but they’re grounded within the universe they’re supposed to be depicting you jump across shop facades, rooftops, tree branches and clotheslines. Compare this with Spear Pillar, Lylat Cruise or Shadow Moses, which lack the organic asymmetry of Onett, and seem content to instead provide some random floating platforms placed in front of a themed background. As a result they feel sterile, shallow and artificial.

    4. Smash Balls
    Some of the characters had completely overpowered Final Smash attacks like Sonic's, Fox's.

    And there you have it, pretty much all of my niggles with Brawl laid out in a somewhat concise manner. If Nintendo wishes to better Melee and Brawl (at least in my eyes), they’d do well to keep some of these points in mind
  8. Oct 1, 2013
    okay i guess. the story is horrible, and it takes no skill. your just pressing buttons randomly. it just leads to boring gameplay. the 2 best games on the wii are skyward sword and twilight princess

Universal acclaim - based on 81 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 81
  2. Negative: 0 out of 81
  1. Brawl is easily the most fun I’ve had on a Wii, and could be the most fun I’ve had with a game in ages. It’s just that good. There is just so much to do, and so many different and refreshing things added that it would be a crime not to at least take a look.
  2. Rarely has any title delivered so much amazing action, such a wide variety of modes, and so many hours of value. It doesn't get any better than this. [Mar 2008, p.82]
  3. It’s obvious that developer Game Arts have put a painstaking amount of effort into creating this game and every time we play it we’re discovering new Nintendo references which bring back a rush of nostalgia. Brawl’s chaotic multiplayer sessions are some of the best to be had on the system, plus there are plenty of challenges and modes to amuse those ‘friend-impaired’ individuals out there as well. It’s a no-brainer, every serious Nintendo fan out there should score themselves a copy of this game, invite some friends/victims around, and have a smashing good time.