Nintendo recap: Sora in Smash, OLED models, and Metroid Dread, oh my!
Is this the last we'll see of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate?
Hello and welcome to another Nintendo recap. This week started off with some big news when the final Super Smash Bros. fighter was revealed as Sora from Kingdom Hearts. Plus, we found out Kingdom Hearts games are coming to Nintendo Switch, though not in the way that many people had hoped. Then on Friday, the Nintendo Switch OLED model and Metroid Dread released. There's a lot to discuss for each of these topics so let's dive right on in.
Sora comes a-Smashin'
On Tuesday morning, Super Smash Bros. Ultimate fans gathered around screens to watch series creator Masahiro Sakurai reveal the final DLC fighter. There were a lot of realistic predictions and farfetched hopes riding on this last chance and some people were rewarded with a character that they have been wanting for a long time: Sora from Kingdom Hearts. He will be available Oct. 18 and can be purchased individually for $5.99 USD.
Sora's reveal video starts with amiibo for all current fighters facing the iconic flaming Smash logo that was featured in the game's official teasers back in 2018. The flame burns out and all of the amiibo seem to go lifeless. Then a spark appears in the darkness. Mario awakes, walks forward, and thrusts his gloved hand into the flame. It reveals a Keyblade, which opens a magical keyhole and Sora comes floating through it accompanied by iconic Kingdom Hearts music.
As always accompanies Smash fighter reveals, there's a mixed response to Sora being the last one. Some players have been asking for him for years and Sakurai even revealed that Sora was the most requested new fighter in a poll from 2015. However, some fans are upset, sighting that there are already enough sword wielders in the game or pointing to characters that they think are more deserving like Waluigi, Doom Guy, and Master Chief.
Regardless of your opinion, it's impressive that Sora got in. He's already tied up with two other big companies — Square Enix and Disney — so it must have taken a whole lot of negotiations to get him in there to begin with. Not to mention that the iconic Mickey Mouse logo that dangles from his Keyblade keychain must have been one of the biggest licensing obstacles in regards to any of the fighters.
Unfortunately, it doesn't seem like any of his Disney friends are included. Donald and Goofy are even edited out of the art nouveau style image seen in the Dive to the Heart stage that was shown during the presentation. But they would have been a whole other huge licensing issue in and of themselves, so that's not too surprising.
All Kingdom Hearts games coming to Nintendo Switch Cloud Streaming
Along with Sora's fighter announcement, Sakurai revealed that all of the Kingdom Hearts games are joining the best games on Nintendo Switch, although they won't be available for download or in physical copies as they can only be accessed via Switch Cloud Streaming. Some people are upset about this, but it does allow the more graphically intensive Kingdom Hearts 3 to be played on Switch without needing to upgrade the console's hardware or downscale the graphics too much. No exact release date has been given yet.
Metroid Dread blasts onto Switch
After months of waiting, Samus has finally returned in her brand new Switch title Metroid Dread which released on Friday. Reviews across the board have been overwhelmingly positive with many people stating that the game feels like it perfectly fits into the existing series while being the proper step forward. Our own Samuel Tolbert is currently testing the game and will have his review up sometime next week. From what it's looking like, this might just be Nintendo's game of the year material.
The Metroid Dread amiibo have also appeared on store shelves and have been selling out quickly on Amazon and other retailers. So, if you haven't gotten yours yet, you'll need to keep an eye on availability and jump on a purchase when you can.
Nintendo Switch OLED model launched and could theoretically support 4K
The OLED model launched alongside Samus and has been in rather high demand. That's not surprising considering how much better the larger screen shows off colors and contrast. Seriously, I was surprised with how much of a difference it made when I compared my Switch V2 screen against the new OLED model one. I'm currently working on a comparison piece that will go up sometime next week, so check back for that.
If you want one but didn't snag a preorder, you might get lucky dropping in at a Best Buy or other retailer and see if they have it in stock, though some retailers have only acquired enough to fullfill their preorders. If you're interested in grabbing one, you'll have to keep an eye on availability and jump on a purchase as soon as it comes in stock. I recommend using Stock Informer as it can keep track of several stores and notify you if inventory changes.
Now that the OLED model has gotten into people's hands, some have been able to tear it down and look at the new hardware inside. One of the biggest things of note is that the HDMI has been upgraded from 1.4 to 2.0. That means that it could support 4K if the software running allowed for that. As such, it's very likely tech savvy folks will be hacking the system and playing with those resolution capabilities.
It's possible this hardware change was done with a bigger plan in mind. After all, If those Nintendo 4K kit and AI resolution upscaling rumors turn out to be true, it could be where Nintendo is headed with the next console generation. However, it's just as equally likely that the old HDMI outputs weren't available anymore and Nintendo was forced to make the change.
Until next week
Well, that was a lot wasn't it? We're firmly in October now, meaning that Pokémon Brilliant Diamond and Shining Pearl release next month along with a few other anticipated titles. But for now, I'm diving into Samus' suite and running away from those EMMI robots while playing my new OLED model. I hope you're able to play a fun game this weekend and we'll see you again next week.
Until next time.
- Rebecca Spear