Review by Tokyo Fusion

Reviewed: 12/28/01 | Updated: 03/23/03

Prepare to eat knucle sandwich again! Super Smash Bros. Melee is in the house!

Super Smash Bros. Melee is the sequel to the ever popular multiplayer slug-fest that was on the N64. This instant masterpiece needs no introduction. Let’s move on to the review!

Graphics: 10/10
Gorgeous. Simply beautiful. The Gamecube amazingly manages to incorporate stunning visuals. The graphics are one of the game’s highest points. Every level is detailed down to the core. The scenarios are brought to life by many background or foreground animations. The water in Jungle Japes level is spectacular, very life-like, crystalline and fluid. The Brinstar level with the gigantic Kraid is another jaw-dropper as well. The 8-bit Mushroom Kingdom and the 16-bit Yoshi’s Island (complete with those yellow rotating blocks) makes their appearance here and truly brings back nostalgic moments. The moving levels such as F-Zero’s level are really something! The fighters are no longer polygonal. Their appearance is a major improvement from their first game. Bowser is as realistic as ever (slimy and scaly). Mario’s denim jeans and Peach’s royal gown looks like the real clothing material. The intro FMV is one of Nintendo’s best yet. Watch it with awe. It’s amazing that with graphics like this, there are hardly no load times at all.

Music/Sound: 10/10
The background music from the original SSB is cringing, dull, and repetitive. Now flush those thoughts down the drain. The music here is marvelous! The tunes are memorable and fits very well in the stages. The quality is top-notch. Most of the level themes are well orchestrated and remains true to the main theme. Some themes are synthesized but they are truly well-composed! The best orchestration I’ve ever heard from a video game. Hyrule Castle, Onett, Rainbow Cruise, Green Greens, and Brinstar are my personal favorites. The DK rap from DK64 is also here and is comically remixed. The theme of Brinstar is pounding and hyper then slows down, becomes eerie and ambient and makes some nostalgic 8-bit square waves. The theme of Super Mario World (the fast-paced one) plays in Yoshi’s Island while the original main theme of Super Mario Bros. is played in the Mushroom Kingdom level. The sound quality is equally superior as well. The only problem here are the certain character’s voices such as Link and Peach. Other than these minor flaws, both sound and music are the highest points in the game. If a soundtrack CD ever comes out, I would definitely buy it.

Control: 8.5/10
Controls are fairly easy to execute. However, they are too sensitive to the touch. Characters respond very quickly and this is a minor problem for the faster characters such as Captain Falcon and Samus. These flaws are thankfully, shadowed by the game’s hyperactive environment.

The Big Three
Gameplay: 10/10
Replay Value: 10/10
Fun Factor: 10/10
With a cast of old and new characters and items, the option to customize battles, and the updated and new modes, the battles never gets old. There possibilities are endless. What is there to do in the multiplayer mode aside from the normal mode? Take snapshots of your battle! Earn points by showing off your fighting moves! Wanna fight in slo mo a la “Matrix” style? Or do you want your battles hyper-active and fast-paced? Or perhaps you want your battles in big or tiny mode? These are just some of the options for the Multiplayer mode. The 1P mode against the computer is fresh and exciting. You’ll find yourself in “themed-battles” such as “The Mario Bros. Gang” or a group of invisible Fox McClouds. The new Adventure Mode pays tribute to the classic side-scrollers of the early Nintendo years. Y’know… like the very first level of the SMB done in Gamecube mode complete with goombas and koopa troopas. This game truly brings back nostalgia. Trophies can also be won. Collect all of them. They are mostly icons and items from the memory lanes of Nintendo and recent titles. Unlock hidden characters and secret levels! This game is chockfull of extras.

SSBM is an amazing multiplayer game that should be right beside your Gamecube console. Buy it without hesitation. Invite some friends over. It’s gonna be a one long night.

OVERALL: 10/10

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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