Super Smash Bros has opened to the door to RPG characters whose inclusion is the stuff of our wildest dreams. We’ve got Cloud, Joker, Shulk, the Dragon Quest Hero, a thousand Fire Emblem characters and counting. But even when we’ve already got more than we could hope for, it’s always fun to speculate ways to make the roster even better for us RPG fanatics.
The existing heroes couldn’t help but stimulate my imagination for others who would make for great Smash Bros new characters. Along with an exploration of some possible skills and attacks, I’ve also had a think about some of the battle stages and music tracks they could bring along.
Here is my wishlist of the RPG characters that should be added to Smash Bros.
Crono – Chrono Trigger
I’m a little surprised Crono hasn’t already made it into Smash Bros, which is no stranger to older games like Ice Climbers and Earthbound. Arguably the greatest RPG of the SNES era deserves representation.
Yes, we’ve already got a lot of swordsmen but Crono’s move set is pretty varied with the silent hero drawing on different elements to attack his foes. Since Combo Techs attacks are such a big part of Chrono Trigger’s battle system, perhaps an ability to temporarily call an ally into the fray could mix things up a bit. It would be a great touch for his final smash to be a Triple Tech that includes one of the popular supporting characters such as Frog, Marle or Lucca.
Chrono Trigger boasts an outstanding soundtrack. The battle music, boss music or Battle With Magus would be terrific additions to the Smash Bros OST. There are also a host of different locations from many different time periods that could make for excellent stages, but surely the best choice is the End Of Time itself.
2B – Nier Automata
Nier Automata is one of my favourite games of the generation. The fluid combat is fun, the music is amazing and the story is awesome. Its narrative switches between three different characters, but 2B enjoys the most popularity among them and there have been many calls to bring her into the Smash Bros family.
She wields a katana, which isn’t exactly original within Smash Bros, but her faithful robot companion Pod flies around her shoulder peppering lasers and adding some other gameplay possibilities. It would be pretty fun and novel to somehow incorporate the 9S hacking mini-game, but this may interrupt the flow of the battle.
One of Nier Automata’s best features is its soundtrack, and adding 2B would be an opportunity to introduce themes such as Birth Of A Wish and A Beautiful Song. As for stages, I’d pick the Amusement Park. This was one of the most memorable locations of the game, with perhaps the single best piece of music.
Buried somewhere deep within Nier’s lore is an explanation of why these fearsome androids dress as French maids and wear high heels.
Tifa Lockhart – Final Fantasy 7
We already have Cloud and Sephiroth from Final Fantasy 7, but we can never have enough Final Fantasy characters. Picking one of the other main series protagonists like Squad, Tidus or Lightning would be too predictable, and too similar to what we’ve already got. That’s why I think we should mix it up with arguably the most popular female character of the series.
Tifa’s martial arts would make for a nimble brawler who packs a punch to rival Captain Falcon’s. Would FF7’s passionate fanbase be able to cope with the possibility of Cloud and Tifa fighting each other? Hell yeah we would. The hype would be off the charts and the internet would likely collapse under the mountain of close-up screenshots of Tifa’s two greatest assets – her fists.
Tifa’s speed and power made her the most fun character to control in Final Fantasy 7 Remake, meaning she would seamlessly fit into Smash Bros. Whereas Cloud has limit breaks, Tifa could boost her chi levels to increase power and land devastating combos.
We’ve already got some Final Fantasy 7 stages, and I wouldn’t necessarily want to smash up Tifa’s bar, Seventh Heaven. Cosmo Canyon or even atop the Highwind could be interesting settings for battle instead.
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Makoto – Persona 3
It was great to see Joker from Persona 5 join Smash, and I’d love to get another Persona protagonist in the mix. Since the Persona 4 hero Yu has already featured in umpteen spin-offs, Persona 3’s main character probably deserves this one.
One of the most striking things about Persona 3 was the way in which the characters summoned their Personas. Unlike the fairly benign cards or masks from other games, they whipped out gun-like devices called evokers and blasted themselves in the skull.
Would Nintendo allow a teenage character to shoot himself in the head to activate his powers? Absolutely not. Would it be awesome? Definitely.
Nintendo have already teased us with a Mii version of Makoto, but it’s not the same. Rather than making Makoto primarily a melee fighter, it would be more interesting to lean more heavily into his persona’s magic attacks.
Battle theme Mass Destruction is already in Smash Bros, as is the final boss battle Hymn Of The Soul. Any new Persona music would be welcome, but the battle stage is obvious – the summit of the dark, ominous tower known as Tartarus.
Fei Fong Wong – Xenogears
Another RPG character relying on nothing but his fists (and sometimes a giant robot) is Xenogears’ main character, Fei. Though he sometimes loses his mojo and falls out of love with fighting, I wouldn’t mind him being lured back into combat to compete within Smash.
The battle system of Xenogears involved nailing button combinations to perform martial arts. This is definitely something that could be incorporated into his Smash Bros moveset, offering something a little different. His final smash would likely involve hopping into his Gear Weltall to trample around the screen and send everyone flying.
The dystopian world of Xenogears often had the characters exploring places like sewers and abandoned factories. One of these could make for an ominous battlefield, and the excellent boss music would be a strong contender from the soundtrack. This would all be nice, but as a relatively niche JRPG that was never released in PAL regions I’m admittedly not holding my breath for any Xenogears characters.
Adol Christin – Ys series
The Ys series is enjoying a bit of a Western surge in recent years. More titles are being localised, including its latest game Ys IX, and the cult following seems to be growing by each release.
I’ll admit their main character is unlikely to make it onto the roster, but flame-haired adventurer Adol would fit Smash Bros perfectly. His fast-paced combat and host of sword skills wouldn’t be anything groundbreaking in Smash Bros, but agility and timing is what often brings the most fun into the Ys battle system.
Timing a block or a dodge to perfection comes with great benefits in the recent Ys games. Similar timing-based skills are used by Fire Emblem characters, and Adol’s similar Flash Guard ability could be fun to pull off. Like in the Ys games, this would offer a short window of attacks that couldn’t be blocked, prompted opponents to scarper. A flash dodge could also work wonders, briefly slowing down time for Adol’s attempted assailant.
As Ys VIII: Lacrimosa of Dana set a brilliant new standard for the series (and is a great entry point for new players), the island of Seiren would be a great stage, complete with the rocky riffs of its battle music.
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Yuri Lowell – Tales of Vesperia
The Tales series is lulling at the moment, but its array of titles has spawned some great characters over the years. None more so than Tales of Vesperia’s protagonist Yuri Lowell. His chilled, morally grey personality and cool design make him my favourite protagonist of the series.
He may be yet another sword user, but can also mix it up with axes. The action battle system of Vesperia plays similarly to Smash Bros, meaning it would likely be pretty easy to transition Yuri into the battle. Long ranged Demon Fang, coupled with heavier moves like Destruction Field, make Yuri a formidable fighter.
A powerful mystic arte is a ready-made final smash, and for an accompanying stage there are some great candidates on the world map. The shrine of Zaude, the top of Mt. Temza or the Ghost Ship could all host a battle, with many different battle and boss themes also primed for inclusion.
I can already hear a chilled post-battle one-liner when he emerges victorious.
Estelle Bright – Trails in the Sky series
Another long-running RPG series is Falcom’s Legend of Heroes, and its numerous sub-series under the Trails umbrella. I’m a massive fan of Trails, and the brilliant cast list has a huge array of characters worthy of selection.
In the interests of mixing up the skillsets, it would be nice to include a character whose weapon is not a sword but is instead… a stick. Estelle Bright is a bracer sworn to serve the interests of the people in whatever form that takes – usually that’s beating people up.
Estelle wields her weapon with power and skill, spinning around and pummeling opponents into the ground with a variety of different abilities that cost craft points. It would be cool to build up craft points within Smash Bros by landing enough attacks. These could fill Estelle’s individual CP bar and eventually allow her to perform a powerful S-Craft to deal major damage. Alternatively, this could simply be Estelle’s finish smash.
Her peppy banter and boundless enthusiasm would be a wonderful fit to any match of Smash Bros, making her my first choice from the enormous Legend of Heroes world.
Rean Schwarzer – Trails of Cold Steel series
As such a Falcom and Trails fan, I couldn’t resist including another character. Rean is the hero of the lengthy Cold Steel sage, recently reaching its conclusion at the end of its fourth game.
Rean is a swordsman, but his powers and abilities have enough variety to make him a fun inclusion. He regularly channels an inner demon to change his skills to more powerful versions (as well as his hair colour). His Gale craft sees him slice through enemies in the blink of an eye. He can also blast opponents from range and unleash a variety of techniques from the Eight Leaves swordmanship style.
One gameplay possibility could be a gauge similar to Cloud’s Limit to charge up his ogre/demon powers. Rean’s final smash would definitely see huge Divine Knight Valimar heed his call and enter the fray. The Cold Steel series has some of the best battle music going, and there are literally dozens of tracks that would fit the bill.
Again, there are numerous suitable locations from Cold Steel’s setting of Erebonia, but my choice would be one of the earliest spots – the mysterious old schoolhouse that reorganises itself into a different layout with every visit.
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Pyra/Mythra – Xenoblade Chronicles 2
Since Shulk from the Xenoblade universe forced his way onto the roster, perhaps Nintendo would like to promote Xenoblade Chronicles 2 next. I loved XC2 overall, but I can’t say I was taken with the main character Rex. His dialogue was quite irritating and his design was hardly stylish. Therefore, I think the female lead of Pyra/Mythra should take precedence.
For the uninitiated, Pyra and Mythra are essentially a split personality who have different looks and skills. They aren’t strictly playable within Xenoblade Chronicles 2, but the way they switch abilities on the fly could actually make for an interesting gameplay mechanic, not unlike the way Sheik worked in other games.
There are many devastating moves to choose from, as Pyra channels fire and Mythra uses the light element. These involve conjuring massive swords to wreak havoc, raising a burning inferno or blasting deadly beams from the sky. With the press of a button, a switch to the other persona could mix up the moveset and make the duo an intriguing and powerful addition.
One of my favourite locations of Xenoblade Chonicles 2 was the Kingdom of Uraya. Its lakes and waterfalls were both beautiful and hazardous, making it my first choice of battle stage. I still find myself listening to the epic, uplifting background music, years after completing the game.
EDIT: I called it! Pyra and Mythra are blazing into the battle!
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Conclusion – will any of these characters make it?
I’ll admit most of these are pipe dreams. Who do I actually think genuinely could join the next Smash Bros roster? Well, I would never have predicted Piranha Plant so take my opinion with a pinch of salt, but I reckon Crono and 2B may have a genuine shot.
There is a Twitter account dedicated to 2B’s inclusion and in the past people were actually fooled with an official Nintendo tweet that looked like she was confirmed. As for Crono, most of the legwork has been done by Fantendo, who have put together a prospective list of Crono’s build. There are actually a whole heap of fan-made Smash Bros new characters on there, which makes for an interesting read.
We can always hope.