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Super Smash Brothers: Brawl Launch Event!

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In anticipation for the hottest game this month, Super Smash Brothers: Brawl, I am reporting from GameStop in Point Loma, California. Stores across the country are staying open late in anticipation for the release of Super Smash Brothers: Brawl for the Nintendo Wii. This particular location is one of many that is also hosting a Brawl tournament prior to release of the game. The winner of the tournament will go on to a district match, and play until the final winner is decided. Who will be the Super Smash Brothers: Brawl champion?

Here are the rules of the tournament: Round robin style tournament to determine the winner. Total participants is 24. Characters and levels are chosen at random. You must use the same character throughout the entire tournament. Default item settings. 3 min. elimination with sudden death. Whoever has the most eliminations wins. All contestants must use the Wii remote and Nunchaku attachment. The grand prize winer will receive a plasma screen HDTV with Nintendo Wii console and full game library, AND 5,000 CASH! Definitely an incentive to play to win!

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I had a chance to participate in this tournament, and here is how I fared:

  • Round 1: Bowser vs. Meta Knight My first match was against Meta Knight. I spent most of this match trying to figure out the controls and getting used to the gameplay. I hadn’t played Smash Brothers in about 3 years (or longer), so I had to get my training wheels back on. I was able to win the match, but didn’t feel like I played my best.
  • Round 2: Bowser vs. Kirby The next match was against a better opponent using Kirby on a modern, side scrolling version of World 1-2 from the original Super Mario Brothers. Now that I had a strong grasp of the controls, I won this match fairly easily. It’s interesting because this time around, heavyweight characters seem like a much more viable choice than in Melee. I had some pretty decent experience with Bowser in Melee, which made the match a little bit easier for me.
  • Round 3: Bowser vs. Wario (FINALS!) Here’s where it got really interesting! The final match was an epic battle, to say the least. I started off quite poorly, getting my butt handed to me, but once I shook off the “Finals Jitters”, I started playing better. I was able to initiate Bowser’s Final Smash attack, turning him into Giga Bowser, which helped me tie the game. The match ended in sudden death, with me getting knocked off the edge, much to my dismay.

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Using the Wii remote, although comfortable, takes a little getting used to. Suffice it to say, however, the Gamecube controller will probably be the preferred method of play. Most challenging for me was the close proximity of the C and Z buttons that can get confusing in the heat of battle. After the tournament, the winner declared, GameStop opened its doors at midnight to allow customers to pick up their copy of the game. The line was pretty impressive, who would’ve thought? I was also able to get some interviews and impressions of players in the tournament. Watch the video below!

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