Billed as the ultimate crossover fighting game ever made, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate for the Nintendo Switch has stolen hearts, minds, and recreation time from diehard fans and casual players alike. The game, which includes 89 playable fighters sourced from across the gaming universe, has created quite the financial windfall for Nintendo. In fact, it has sold over 25 million units internationally as of September 2021.
Although Ultimate released all the way back in 2018, the community is alive and well due to Nintendo’s tireless support of the game. Spearheaded by Masahiro Sakurai and the developers at Bandai Namco, the game has seen constant updates, countless spirit events, and several in-game tournaments. However, the crème de la crème has been the steady flow of new DLC characters over the past two years.
Many thought that the original Fighters Pass, with its five extra characters, was more than enough for people to sink their teeth into. However, Sakurai and company had other plans. In the closing moments of Byleth’s reveal, Sakurai announced the existence of the Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fighter Pass Vol. 2.
Available for $29.99, the Fighters Pass Vol. 2 comes with the six DLC packs released between April 2020 and October 2021. These packs include one fighter, their corresponding stage, several music tracks, and a new spirit board. Like with the original Fighters Pass, packs are available individually for $5.99 if you don’t feel like buying the pass outright. However, those who purchase the pass will receive the Ancient Soldier Gear Mii Swordfighter outfit for free.
While ARMS didn’t have much staying power, its characters made a lasting impression on Switch owners. So much, in fact, that many questioned why the game was only represented in Ultimate with the Spring Man assist trophy and a few spirits.
Fortunately, Sakurai and company looked to remedy that with the inclusion of Min Min. Well, only after the spunky waiter of Mintendo Noodle House fought off the other ARMS characters to earn her spot.
Min Min’s moves are inspired by the mechanics of ARMS. As such, she can extend and switch out the weapons equipped to each arm independently. While these mechanics give Min Min a higher barrier to entry than other fighters, this variety is Min Min’s greatest strength.
As a part of Challenger Pack 6, Min Min comes packaged with Spring Stadium, 18 musical tracks, and 10 new spirits.
Steve & Alex
With over 200 million in worldwide sales, Minecraft continues to rule the gaming world — even a decade after its initial release. So, it only seems right to include a representative in a game that is considered the ultimate video game crossover. Though, the rights owner at Microsoft weren’t satisfied with just one.
As the default male and female skins, Steve and Alex get top billing. However, much like Hero and Bowser Jr., different Minecraft characters —namely Zombie and Enderman — serve as alternate costumes.
Steve and Alex are one of the most unique fighters on the roster as success with them is reliant on the player’s ability to mine materials from the stage itself. The characters may have below average mobility and weight, but they can build temporary walls anywhere on the map, upgrade their weapons throughout the course of a battle, and stand on a floating block to recover.
Steve and Alex are a part of Challenger Pack 7. In addition to them, the pack comes with the aptly named Minecraft World, seven tracks, and 10 new spirits.
Series: Final Fantasy
After the reveal of Steve and Alex, many expected more mainstream video game characters to take up the remaining spots in the second Fighters Pass. The conversation became so centered around the likes of Crash Bandicoot, Doom Guy, and Jonesy from Fortnite that everybody was caught off-guard when Sephiroth was ultimately revealed.
As the main antagonist of Final Fantasy VII, Sephiroth is a genetically engineered super soldier. After learning of the origins of his powers, Sephiroth reacts as any unhinged super-powered being would — by planning to drop a meteor on the planet. No wonder the One-Winged Angel is considered one of the most sinister villains in Final Fantasy.
Despite being the seventh lightest fighter in Ultimate, Sephiroth is quite tall and rangy. The Masamune — Sephiroth’s signature weapon — grants him nearly the best range in the game, second only to Min Min. Once Sephiroth reaches a certain damage percentage, he enters Winged Form. While in Winged Form, Sephiroth gains a third jump, 1.3x damage multiplier, and higher mobility.
The fan-favorite Final Fantasy character is included in Challenger Pack 8. This pack comes bundled with the Northern Cave stage, nine tracks, and 13 new spirits.
Pyra & Mythra
Series: Xenoblade Chronicles
Ever since Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Sakurai and company always went the extra mile when it came to revealing new characters. However, nothing compares to getting the developers at Monolith Soft to make a brand-new cutscene for the Pyra and Mythra reveal. To the untrained eye, the opening minute and a half of this trailer could easily be mistaken for a sequel to Xenoblade Chronicles 2.
Despite Nintendo’s positioning of the franchise, Xenoblade Chronicles is a relatively niche IP. As disappointing as it may be, it’s easy to see why. Each of the franchise’s three main entries are 100+ hour JRPGs with a sense of scale only rivaled by MMORPGs.
For those unfamiliar with them, Pyra and Mythra come from Xenoblade Chronicles 2. In that game, they serve as the partner Blade, or living weapon, for the main character Rex. While players are initially introduced to Pyra, Mythra later reveals herself as Pyra’s alternate personality. In summation, Pyra and Mythra are two sides of the same coin.
In-game, both Pyra and Mythra share the same regular attacks but with different stats and unique specials. Though her dash and movement speeds are quite low for a middleweight, Pyra makes up for it with above average range and incredible strength. On the other hand, Mythra is incredibly fast, making combos and evasion much easier. Success with Pyra and Mythra hinges on the player’s ability to strategically swap between the two to capitalize on their strengths.
Aside from Pyra and Mythra, Challenger Pack 9 includes the Cloud Sea of Alrest, 16 tracks exclusively from Xenoblade Chronicles 2, and 12 new spirits.
Kazuya Mishima’s inclusion in Ultimate came as a surprise. Out of all characters in Tekken, many expected either its iconic antagonist Heihachi Mishima or current protagonist Jin Kazama to receive the invitation.
Despite being the protagonist of the first game, Kazuya’s role in the Tekken shifts from game-to-game. From protagonist to antagonist to side character, Kazuya has worn every hat in the franchise. Considering how integral he is to the series as a whole, Kazuya is the perfect representative of this long-running 3D fighting game series.
When it comes to Smash, Kazuya is a heavy brawler with a focus on ground offense. Grabs, punches, and kicks are the name of Kazuya’s game, with particularly high damage and knockback values. It’s not all positives though as Kazuya’s speed, movement, and dash are quite slow. Much like Sephiroth, Kazuya enters an enhanced state when he reaches a certain damage percentage. Known as Rage mode, this state amplifies Kazuya’s attacks by 1.1 and gives access to a Rage Drive, which can be executed by grabbing an opponent, using his down special, or inputting a particular button combination.
In addition to Kazuya, downloading Challenger Pack 10 grants access to the Mishima Dojo stage, 39 tracks that encompass the entire Tekken franchise, and 11 new spirits.
Series: Kingdom Hearts
Over the past eight years, the reveal of new Smash characters has become an event. No matter your interest in the series, everybody takes notice. As such, being the final character reveal of the — for lack of a better term — ultimate Smash Bros. game is a massive deal. Due to licensing, there will never be a fighting game roster much like Ultimate’s. So, on top of the incredible amount of anticipation, the final character needs to live up to weight of the occasion.
As the most requested character in 2015’s Smash Bros. Fighter Ballot, Sora of Kingdom Hearts fame certainly fits the bill. For the uninitiated, Sora is the protagonist of Kingdom Hearts, a crossover between Square Enix’s Final Fantasy and Disney’s vast library of family-friendly properties. Using his signature Keyblade, Sora is able to unlock disparate Disney worlds to fight off the encroaching darkness.
Sora is classified as a lightweight fighter with below average dashing speed and the 10th slowest walking speed. Where he really shines is in the air. He can stay in the air for a very long time thanks to his low gravity and boasts one of the longest recoveries in the entire game.
On top of Sora, Challenger Pack 11 includes Hollow Bastion, nine musical tracks, and eight new spirits.