Speaking to Famitsu, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate director Masahiro Sakurai has revealed why ultimately he and his team opted to fill one of the roster slots for a new character with Pokemon's Incinerate
In addition to providing insight into the Incineroar decision, Sakurai also provided a little bit of insight into other decisions that were made over the course of development, such as axing trophies.
"When planning began around December of 2015, I had resolved that I had to have all kinds of fighters in the game," said Sakurai. "Generally, though, I can not really add a character from a game that has not come out yet to the roster … So, I left one character frame open for Pokemon, and after Pokemon: Ultra Sun and Ultra Moon came out I took another look at it. That resulted in Incineroar being chosen. I wanted to try making a pro-wrestler type character at least once! Incineroar is voiced by the late Mr. Unshō Ishizuka – of Professor. Oak fame – who passed away back in August; he had recorded new lines just for this game. May he rest in peace. "
Incineroar is definitely a choice that seemed to take the Super Smash Bros. community by surprise, but it appears to be a surprise that most enjoyed. And in hindsight, it makes sense that if Nintendo wanted to add a Pokemon fighter, it would be incinerate. Adding an older Pokemon was likely never on the table, and if you want to promote the newer generation of Pokemon, Incineroar is a great candidate, especially when you consider how naturally well he fits into the game.
As for why trophies were cut from the game, Sakurai reveals it was a pretty early decision. Further, adding them to the game takes more time and effort than some may think, and ultimately the director wanted to provide his energy elsewhere.
"During the planning stage, I had decided on getting rid of the trophy collecting element of the game fairly early on. It felt a bit rash to continue doing so than it originally did, given all of the fighters that have been included up until now . I felt that it would be best to divide my strength among other aspects of the game; making the trophies took quite a bit more effort than people might think. "
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is poised to release next month on December 7 via the Nintendo Switch. For more news and coverage of the platform fighter, click here. And of course, feel free to leave a comment and let us know what you think. How do you feel Incineroar being added to the game? What about trophies being removed?
Thanks, Nintendo Everything.