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While usually making content for weekly Famitsu, there’s no monopoly on the words, thoughts, and overall remarks of Masahiro Sakurai, resident Smash auteur. Nintendo Dream conducted a dream with Sakurai last month, which they’ve only recently posted online. @PushDustIn of Source Gaming has provided a valuable translation as always — here’s the rundown:

  • When it came to design inspiration for Castlevania characters, Sakurai took inspiration not just from the NES entries in the series, but also Castlevania: Harmony of Despair (a sort of crossover game where playable characters featured different movesets).
  • As stated previously, the lack of ARMS and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 characters is due to poor timing — since all characters were decided at the start of the project plan at the end of 2015, they weren’t able to add more later on in development. The wording implies that they’re unlikely to be DLC characters for Ultimate, either.

  • The Inkling as a fighter was built and conceived around managing ink levels. It was very difficult to implement, but ultimately materialized in its current version. Sakurai consulted with the Splatoon devs on how the ink should act, and also on Inkling alt colors.
  • Interestingly, Isabelle wasn’t intended to be for the casual Smash audience — Sakurai notes that she and Villager and very technical fighters that the hardcore Smash players enjoy, and has a variety of tricky tools to fight against.
  • Ridley was difficult to implement due to (as memes of old had emphasized) his size. Sakurai and co. eventually decided to have his arms and legs bend à la his original NES and Super appearances in order to connote his massive size while still keeping his frame reasonable.
  • Piranha Plant was chosen not just because it was recognizable but because it was unique in regards to a moveset. Sakurai acknowledges that it’s difficult to make all the different sword users stand out — joking that main characters should get an axe sometime — but Piranha Plant has moves that are only possible with it, even beyond what punch/kick users can do.


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Written by Amelia Fruzzetti

A writer and Nintendo fan based in Seattle, Washington. When not working for NinWire, she can be found eating pasta, writing stories, and wondering about when Mother 3 is finally going to get an official localization.