Super Smash Bros. Ultimate (大乱闘スマッシュブラザーズ SPECIAL, Great Fray Smash Brothers Special) is a fighting game for the Nintendo Switch. It was first teased on March 8th, 2018 at the end of the Nintendo Direct released the same day, and fully revealed on June 12th at E3 2018. It is the fifth installment in the Super Smash Bros. series (sixth if both versions of Super Smash Bros. 4 are counted as two games). The game was released worldwide on December 7th, 2018.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate received universal critical acclaim from both critics and the audience, with some critics calling it the best installment in the series. They praised its large amount of content and fine-tuning of existing Smash gameplay elements, although its online mode received criticism. By summer of 2019, Ultimate had sold over 15.71 million copies worldwide, making it the best selling Super Smash Bros. game and also the best-selling fighting game of all time. Its massive success has had it nominated for, and win, multiple awards.
The opening movie of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is composed of the cutscenes from World of Light and gameplay footage from the game set to the tune of Lifelight, featuring all the characters in the game not including DLC.
All 63 characters (65 if counting the Pokémon Trainer as three fighters) from all previous Smash Bros. games return as playable characters. As well as the returning cast, the game also features 11 newcomers in the base game, with at least six characters (five known and one unknown plus several more) planned as download content. In total, this ensures that at least 74 characters (76 if counting the Pokémon Trainer's Pokémon) are playable in the game at launch and currently 88 (90) characters are playable overall, the most for any Smash Bros. game. Each character is numbered in the order from when they first joined the series, with the exception of Echo Fighters (who share a number with the character they are based on) and Pokémon Trainer (whose Pokémon are numbered instead).
Inkling, with various Girl and Boy designs from the original Splatoon, was the first character confirmed to appear in the game as a new playable fighter. Ridley, a central villain from the Metroid series, was confirmed to be playable during E3 2018, with Meta Ridley as an alternate costume. Simon of the Castlevania series was announced as the game's first third-party newcomer. King K. Rool, arch-enemy of Donkey Kong and Diddy Kong from the Donkey Kong series, was confirmed to be a playable newcomer as well, with his move-set drawing on his appearances as a boss in the Donkey Kong Country games onward. Isaac from the Golden Sun series, who previously appeared in Brawl as an Assist Trophy, makes his playable debut, Isabelle from the Animal Crossing series, who also previously appeared in Smash 4 as an Assist Trophy, makes her playable debut as the second Animal Crossing representative. Geno from Super Mario RPG, makes his debut in Smash as a playable character, with with his move-set from the game, and Finally, in the November Nintendo Direct, Incineroar from Pokémon Sun & Moon was announced as the title's last base roster newcomer.
In addition, most full clones are now labelled as "Echo Fighters" and are marked with an epsilon (ε) next to their fighter numbers, which they share with the character they are based on. Returning characters Lucina and Dark Pit have been given this title (as they are Echo Fighters of Marth and Pit, respectively), while new characters Daisy, Richter, Chrom, Dark Samus, and Ken are Echo Fighters of Peach, Simon, Roy, Samus, and Ryu, respectively. Aside from an option allowing these characters to be displayed on the same slot as their counterpart on the character select screen exclusively during Vs. Mode, Tourney, Custom Smash, Super Sudden Death, and Quickplay; there is no special distinction between them in game, and the name is used mostly for marketing purposes.
Piranha Plant from the Mario series touches new ground as the first mob character in Smash, and as an early purchase bonus DLC character. It has been confirmed that five more unique newcomers will be added as DLC by February of 2020. With the exception of Piranha Plant, all of the DLC characters can be bought together as part of the Fighter Pass. Persona's Joker is part of Challenger Pack 1, the Hero from Dragon Quest is part of Challenger Pack 2, Banjo & Kazooie are part of Challenger Pack 3. and Fatal Fury’s Terry is part of Challenger Pack 4, and finally Byleth as part of Challenger Pack 5. This number of newcomers was announced during the January 16, 2020 Presentation revealing Byleth. During the September 4, 2019 Nintendo Direct, after revealing Terry, it was announced that even more DLC Fighters beyond the five in the Fighters Pass Vol. 1 are in development, as Fighters Pass Vol. 2 will include 6 more playable characters. This number of newcomers was announced during the January 16, 2020 Presentation revealing Byleth. The first fighter is Min Min from the ARMS franchise (announced on March 26, 2020; revealed on June 22, 2020), and will be released on June 29, 2020. All the rest of the characters from the Fighters Pass Vol. 2 remain unannounced and are set to have all been released by the end of 2021, though their specific release dates are unknown.
As was the case in Super Smash Bros. 4, further "characters" exist as alternate costumes for other preexisting characters. In this game, there are 18: specifically, Alph as a palette swap of Olimar; each of the seven Koopalings as palette swaps of Bowser Jr.; Pokémon Trainer, Villager, Wii Fit Trainer, Robin, Corrin, Inkling, and Pikachu each have opposite gendered variants as palette swaps; and the Hero has three other protagonists from across the series as palette swaps. However, these characters are not treated as separate characters ingame.
Only the Original 8 characters from the first game are available from the start. Like in Smash 4, the Mii Fighters are also available from the start via customization, but are otherwise locked upon initial startup of the game. The rest of the cast must be unlocked; however, the unlocking process and conditions are much simpler than in past games. Fighters will challenge the player in ten minute intervals or by clearing Classic Mode with a prerequisite character, and can also be unlocked by being rescued in World of Light.
Rosalina & Luma
Zero Suit Samus
Pokémon Trainer (Squirtle, Ivysaur, Charizard)
Mr. Game & Watch
Wii Fit Trainer
Piranha Plant (DLC)
King K. Rool
Min Min (DLC)
Banjo & Kazooie
Bold denotes starter character's.
"ε" denotes Echo Fighter's.
|Light Realm bosses|
|Dark Realm bosses|
|Akira||Virtua Figher||Virtua Fighter|
|Akira attacks the opponents and blocks any physical attacks from them.|
|Alucard||Castlevania||Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse|
|Alucard slashes at players several times and transforms into a bat to attack. He can also dodge if tried to attack him, making him tricky to KO.|
|Andross||Star Fox||Star Fox|
|Andross appears in the background and shoots tiles at the players.|
|Arcade Bunny||Nintendo Badge Arcade||Nintendo Badge Arcade|
|Summons a claw above the stage that grabs any enemies, pulls them up, and drops them. The number on the claw shows the number of tries before it disappears.|
|Ashley possesses a purple cloud that will make anyone in the dark zone take damage and possibly end up buried in the ground. Players also disappear for a few seconds within the cloud. If someone eats food in the dark zone, they will receive damage instead.|
|Black Knight||Fire Emblem||Fire Emblem: Path of Radiance|
|Black Knight uses strong slash attacks to his opponents, though he walks very slowly, but doesn't flinch with standard attacks.|
|Bomberman appears and places his bombs on the ground which explode in four directions. His bombs can also be attacked by other opponents to backfire him or other opponents.|
|Burrowing Snagret pops up from the ground and pecks at the enemies when they are near it. Might get stunned if attacked from back while pecking.|
|Chain Chomp||Mario||Super Mario Bros. 3|
|Chain Chomp can try to reach the opponent quickly to attack them.|
|Chef Kawasaki||Kirby||Kirby Super Star|
|Chef Kawasaki attacks by throwing plates. He ends by pulling fighters with his ladle and then cooks them in a pot, damaging them, then splashes them out, leaving some food.|
|Color TV-Game 15||Color TV-Game 15||PONG|
(Color TV-Game 15)
|2 paddles from the video game "Pong" appear on the edges of the screen, hitting a ball back and forth that can injure players. The paddles can also damage players on contact.|
|Devil World||Devil World|
|Devil shirfts the stage boundaries. However, Hoop Damage is not added if you are out of the boundaries the Devil creates.|
|Dillon||Dillon's Rolling Western||Dillon's Rolling Western|
|His attack involves rolling a quick charge. He proceeds to charge up one last time, turning yellow, repeatedly dealing damage while doing so, and shoots off the screen.|
|Dr. Kawashima||Nintendo DS||Brain Age: Train Your Brain in Minutes a Day!|
|He flings bubbled numbers at the fighters, which can be attacked to change their direction. When they collide and form a "10", a giant explosion occurs. A number greater than 10 will create a small, weak explosion, while a number lesser than 10 will fly as usual.|
|Dr. Wright summons buildings to rise up out of the ground. This damages opponents who are standing in the area of the building, and produces great vertical knockback. Occasionally makes a massive skyscraper.|
|Flies & Hand||Mario||Mario Paint|
|Flies appear on-screen and a hand with a fly swatter swats the flies and opponents.|
|Ghirahim||Zelda||The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword|
|Ghirahim moves acrobatically across the stage, attacking with a sword and knives. Any projectiles thrown at him are reflected.|
|Guile||Street Fighter||Street Fighter II|
|Guile crouches to the ground, and when his opponents gets closer to him, he attacks them with his Flash Kick. Can also blocks projectiles.|
|Original Pac-Man enemies, Inky, Blinky, Pinky, and Clyde. They move in the air, damaging other players that touch them. Each ghost have a unique movement pattern.|
|Gray Fox||Metal Gear||Metal Gear|
|Frank Jaeger, the Gray Fox, runs around slashing opponents. Also reflects stray projectiles.|
|Hammer Bro||Mario||Super Mario Bros.|
|Hammer Bro throws hammers in an arc to the opponents by either standing or jumping.|
|Infantry & Tanks||Wars||Famicom Wars|
|The Advance Wars infantry and tank sprites roam across the stage shooting at players. When spawned, they follow the direction of the summoner.|
|Jeff Andonuts shoots 5 homing rockets from his Multi Bottle Rocket five invention (four small and one large) at his opponents. Sometimes fires a second round.|
JP: Dori Kururi & Rasanda 8
|Drill Dozer||Drill Dozer|
|Jill attacks opponents with her drill, sometimes getting stuck.|
|Kapp'n||Animal Crossing||Animal Crossing|
|Drives his bus to off-screen. Carries away a fighter who got hit by the bus, while others get knockback. Can be escaped like any grab.|
|Klaptrap||Donkey Kong||Donkey Kong Country|
|Klaptrap walks around, latches on fighters and bites them constantly.|
|Knuckle Joe||Kirby||Kirby Super Star|
|Knuckle Joe delivers a series of Vulcan Jabs to his opponents and finishes with either a Smash Punch or an uppercut attack named Rising Break.|
|Knuckles||Sonic the Hedgehog||Sonic the Hedgehog 3|
|Attacks enemies with his fists and also does homing attacks similar to Sonic. Can also go underground to do stealth attacks. Any enemies on ground will be buried.|
|Krystal||Star Fox||Star Fox Adventures|
|Attacks other fighters with her staff and does ice attacks with it.|
|Lyn||Fire Emblem||Fire Emblem|
|The screen darkens, as Lyn focuses and then having teleported, she delivers a single, powerful strike focused on the nearest opponent, similar to Galaxia Darkness in animation and knockback.|
|A Metroid latches onto players and repeatedly gives them damage. Can be attacked and shaken off, but prevents the victim from using recovery moves. However, if done right, the character can spam recovery moves indefinitely until the Metroid disappears. It can be defeated only with ice attacks or damaging it when frozen.|
|Midna||Zelda||The Legend of Zelda: Twilight Princess|
|Midna uses her hair to grab an opponent and swing it at any part of the stage. Ocassionally teleports around the stage if she is idle.|
|Moon||Zelda||The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask|
|Comes in from the background of the stage and covers a great portion of it. It makes a very powerful impact and deals repeated damage to all fighters it hits before eventually exploding, launching them away with great knockback.|
|Appears in a beaker and shoots a rainbow-colored laser from its eye. She is also protected by Rinka enemies. Becomes vulnerable after her laser attack.|
|A "Nintendog" blocks the screen.|
|Nightmare appears as the power orb before reverting to his wizard form, upon which he engulfs the screen into complete darkness. This effect causes players to attack blindly.|
|Nikki appears in front of a screen and draws various creatures and objects on her Nintendo 3DS which ultimately come to life on the battlefield, acting as potential hazards.|
|Phosphora||Kid Icarus||Kid Icarus: Uprising|
|Phosphora soars through the air at a high speed, shooting lightning bolts.|
|Prince of Sablé||Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru||Kaeru no Tame ni Kane wa Naru|
|Transforms into a snake or a frog, and unloads multiple attacks on any opponent he catches.|
|Rathalos||Monster Hunter||Monster Hunter|
|Flies across the stage and do aerial attacks, and also blast fireballs onto the opponents.|
|Attacks using Arts such as Happy Happy, which heals all characters within its vicinity, Freezinate, which freezes opponents, Yoink!, which causes those within the vicinity to trip, and Bedtime, which puts opponents to sleep.|
(Xbox 360/PS3/Wii U/Switch)
|Rodin appears and punches the enemies with his giant arms through the portals. Also uses heel kicks similar to Bayonetta.|
|Samurai Goroh slashes his swords while chasing opponents. Can jump to reach airborne opponents.|
|Shadow the Hedgehog||Sonic the Hedgehog||Sonic Adventure 2|
|Shadow slows down time with Chaos Control, similar to the Timer item, but with shorter duration. The summoner continues to move at normal speed, he will also freeze opposing players in place before leaving.|
|From homonym 1979 Nintendo`s arcade game, he will shoot at the opponents at various directions.|
|Shovel Knight||Shovel Knight||Shovel Knight|
|Attacks with his Shovel Blade by digging out dirt and his signature Shovel Drop. Also digs out food from the ground.|
|Skull Kid||Zelda||The Legend of Zelda: Majora's Mask|
|Skull Kid summons a variety of effects such as flipping the screen in different directions, reversing player controls, and making players invisible in his cloud.|
|Spring Man punches his opponents with his very long arms and ends with a special attack.|
|Performs a concert and the stage blast line will shrink over and over.|
|Densetsu no Stafy||Densetsu no Stafy|
|Starfy spins, damaging players. Provides very little knockback.|
|Starman teleports at random parts of the stage while shooting out lightning bolts from his eye. Shows the message "SMAAASH!" from the game Earthbound after defeated.|
|Sukapon||Joy Mech Fight||Joy Mech Fight|
|Sukapon appears and throws the enemies in different directions. It also attacks by throwing its head.|
|Takamaru||The Mysterious Murasame Castle||The Mysterious Murasame Castle|
|Takamaru uses his Multidirectional Pinwheel Knife Rook Attack and slashes with his sword.|
|Thwomp||Mario||Super Mario Bros. 3|
|Thwomp crushes his opponents, but only when they are near him.|
|Tiki||Fire Emblem||Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon and the Blade of Light (Ankoku Ryū to Hikari no Tsurugi)|
|Tiki transforms into her Manakete form and breathes fire at the opponents.|
|Vince||Art Academy||Art Academy: First Semester|
|Vince draws his paintings to blind all the opponents. The affected opponents take continuous damage too.|
|Waluigi repeatedly stomps opponents into the ground. This onslaught is followed by either a strong kick or a strike from his tennis racket. If an opponent is in the air, Waluigi will jump up and repeatedly send his foot downwards, meteor smashing any opponent he comes in contact with.|
|Wily Capsule||Mega Man||Mega Man|
|Dr. Wily pilots his Wily Capsule from Mega Man 7 and attacks the opponents with his orbs. However, when his Wily Capsule is destroyed, Dr. Wily surrenders and begs for mercy.|
|Yuri Kozukata||Fatal Frame||Fatal Frame: Maiden of Black Water|
|Yuri uses her camera to take pictures at the opponents, and when she does, it will damage and stun them.|
|Zero||Mega Man||Mega Man X|
|Zero uses his beam sword to do slash attacks and beam attacks.|
- Alolan Exeggutor
- Alolan Raichu
- Tapu Koko
- Alolan Vulpix
- Latias and Latios
- Banana Gun
- Black Hole
- Death's Scythe
- Fake Smash Ball
- Healing Field
- Healing Sprout
- Killing Edge
- Launch Star
- Ramblin' Evil Mushroom
- Rage Blaster
- Assist Trophy
- Back Shield
- Banana Peel
- Beam Sword
- Blast Box
- Boss Galaga
- Bullet Bill
- Bunny Hood
- Deku Nut
- Drill Arm
- Fairy Bottle
- Fire Bar
- Fire Flower
- Franklin Badge
- Golden Hammer
- Gooey Bomb
- Green Shell
- Gust Bellows
- Heart Container
- Hocotate Bomb
- Home-Run Bat
- Killer Eye
- Lightning Bolt
- Lip's Stick
- Master Ball
- Maxim Tomato
- Metal Box
- Motion-Sensor Bomb
- Mr. Saturn
- Ore Club
- Party Ball
- Poison Mushroom
- Poké Ball
- POW Block
- Ray Gun
- Rocket Belt
- Rolling Crate
- Screw Attack
- Smart Bomb
- Smash Ball
- Smoke Ball
- Soccer Ball
- Special Flag
- Spiny Shell
- Star Rod
- Steel Diver
- Super Leaf
- Super Mushroom
- Super Scope
- Super Star
- Superspicy Curry
- Warp Star
- X Bomb
Towards the end of Super Smash Bros. 4's post-launch development, Masahiro Sakurai announced that his next project had been decided and that he would be taking a small vacation following the end of development. Unlike previous Smash titles, which had their development studios built from the ground up, Bandai Namco returned to help game development. Prior to starting development, the team had a choice between completely overhauling the game's system and feel or working off of what was established in the last game. The team ultimately went with the latter. Had the team gone with the former, the game would have likely only had a third of its characters. Despite deciding to base the game off of the previous installment, Sakurai still increased the overall speed of the game, but only by an amount that wouldn't be too alienating to people unfamiliar with the series.Sakurai notes that he had wanted to make these changes in previous titles, but was unable to because it was easy for one to lose track of their character's position on screen, especially on the Nintendo 3DS. When Sakurai had revealed to his development team that he intended to bring back every previously playable character, he was met with silence. The project plan was later finished by December 2015, and development officially began in February 2016, immediately after DLC wrapped up for SSB4. On November 12, 2017, Nintendo filed a number of trademarks, notably including a Japanese Super Smash Bros. logo.
A Super Smash Bros. title for the Switch was later officially revealed on March 8, 2018 via a Nintendo Direct. Without explicitly confirming the playable status of any characters, the teaser trailer hinted the Inklings would be debuting in the game as newcomers, while also suggesting that Mario, Link, and several other series veterans would be returning. Shortly after the reveal, Sakurai confirmed in a tweet that he had been working on the game "in silence, day after day". On March 22, 2018, Nintendo announced the Super Smash Bros. Invitational 2018, a tournament taking place on June 12th where invited professional players will play the upcoming game. Later, in volume 542 of his Famitsu article, Sakurai revealed that his work schedule had been cut down significantly, citing strict regulations regarding work hours. On April 18, 2018, Nintendo again filed a number of trademarks for several game logos, including the Super Smash Bros. logo. Most of these game logos originate from games with some relationship to the Smash series, including Pikmin, Star Fox, and F-Zero. These trademarks were approved on May 14, 2018.
The first extended look at the game came at Nintendo's E3 2018 presentation. Masahiro Sakurai introduced the coverage, which kicked off with an extended video showing new incarnations for veteran characters. After confirming the return of previously cut characters such as Ice Climbers and Snake, the tagline "Everyone Is Here" was introduced, and the video revealed that all playable characters from previous Smash Bros. titles would be returning to the new game, including the formerly cut Pichu and Young Link from Melee, as well as Pokémon Trainer and Wolf from Brawl. New information on the Ultimate incarnations of characters was revealed, including the presence of Cappy in Mario's taunts and other moves, that Zelda would be based on her A Link to the Past design, all the DLC fighters from Smash 4 would return as part of the launch roster, Ike would have his Path of Radiance and Radiant Dawn designs from the two previous games and much more. The presentation introduced "Echo Fighters", which Lucina and Dark Pit are now marked as, while Daisy was revealed as a new Echo Fighter. The presentation also confirmed returning elements, items, and stages, which would receive revamped Ω forms and Battlefield forms. The trailer also confirmed the Inklings as the game's first newcomers, while concluding with a reveal of the game's final title: Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The presentation officially concluded with a final trailer in which Ridley from the Metroid series - long requested by fans for inclusion in the series but rebuffed by Sakurai due to his large size - was confirmed as a playable character.
Following the end of the presentation, a Nintendo Treehouse event went live. During the Treehouse event, several matches were streamed and some new features were revealed and discussed. In addition to the Treehouse livestream, a playable demo of the game was opened to the public at E3 2018 and at the Nintendo Store in New York. Following the end of the Splatoon 2 World Championships, the Super Smash Bros. Invitational 2018 began. During the match pitting MkLeo as Bayonetta against Plup as Ridley, Masahiro Sakurai reportedly shook his head after MkLeo had performed a successful ladder combo on Plup. At the end of the invitational, the Nintendo Treehouse livestream resumed, further showcasing more gameplay elements and matches. In addition to this, the official Super Smash Bros. Ultimate website was published. This would serve as the primary source for new details about the game.
At the EVO 2018 fighting game tournament, Nintendo revealed that a new Ultimate-focused Nintendo Direct presentation would be released on August 8, 2018. The presentation opened with a trailer confirming the inclusion of content from Konami's Castlevania franchise for the first time in the series. The trailer revealed the presence of new fighters, Simon Belmont and his Echo Fighter, Richter Belmont; a new Assist Trophy, Alucard; a new stage called Dracula's Castle, and more. The Direct also covered two new Echo Fighters, Chrom and Dark Samus, as well as new music, modes, stages, and items. The presentation concluded with a trailer introducing a new playable character: King K. Rool, leader of the Kremlings and nemesis of the Kong family from the Donkey Kong and Donkey Kong Country series.
In a Nintendo Direct presentation shown on September 13, 2018, a Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Nintendo Switch console bundle was unveiled, featuring a specially designed dock and Joy-Con controllers along with the download code for the game. Isabelle, from the Animal Crossing series was also revealed as a newcomer.
In October 10, Geno from Super Mario RPG was announce to be a playable character, with a new stage named Wario Land.
The final pre-release Ultimate-focused Nintendo Direct presentation aired on November 1, 2018. This revealed Ken and Incineroar as new playable characters, as well as the inclusion of DLC fighters - Piranha Plant appearing shortly after launch, followed by five other unannounced characters, which have been selected in advance by Nintendo as future additions, and have yet to be developed. It also took a deeper look at the game's modes and online infrastructure, and revealed Spirits Mode and Adventure Mode: World of Light, before finishing with the mode's opening cutscene and the reveal of the game's vocal theme, Lifelight.
On November 20, 2018, an overview trailer narrated by Xander Mobus (The Announcer) covered the game in further detail, showcasing all of the playable fighters, stages, items, Pokémon, Assist Trophies, Spirits, game modes and more.
At the 2018 Game Awards, the Phantom Thieves from Persona 5 interrupted the broadcast to announce that their leader, codenamed "Joker," would be joining the roster as the first DLC fighter of the Fighters Pass in Ultimate.
During the Nintendo Direct on February 13, 2019, a spring update was announced alongside a sneak peek at Joker's model and a look at new amiibo.
In the "Nintendo Switch My Way" trailer, "Stage Builder" was leaked. It is yet to be confirmed if this was purposeful on Nintendo's behalf or if it was simply a marketing ploy.
On April 16, 2019, a video titled New Content Approaching was released. The video detailed Joker's moveset and confirmed that he would release the next day, April 17. The video also revealed Mementos, Stage Builder, new Mii Costumes, Video Editor, and Shared Content. Version 3.0.0 was on April 17.
During Nintendo's E3 2019 presentation on June 11th, Hero from Dragon Quest and Banjo & Kazooie from their namesake series Banjo-Kazooie were confirmed as the second and third newcomers in the Fighters Pass, set to be released at some point in Summer and Fall of 2019 respectively. The former's gameplay would later be shown off in a dedicated video presentation on July 30th, the day of the character's release date, while the latter's was showcased in a special video following the September 4 Nintendo Direct. Both presentations were hosted by Sakurai himself.
During the September 4 Nintendo Direct, Terry Bogard from SNK's Fatal Fury series was announced to be the fourth (& penultimate) newcomer in the Fighter Pass, set to be released sometime in November while the third Challenger Pack, Banjo-Kazooie was shadow-dropped after the Direct alongside the 5.0 update, the return of Home Run Contest, their stage: Spiral Mountain, 5 new Mii Fighter costumes including one based on Sans from Toby Fox's hit indie game, UNDERTALE along with a remix of Megalovania and 10 new tracks. In addition, following Terry Bogard's reveal, it was also announced that several more individual DLC fighters beyond the Pass was confirmed to be in development.
On January 16th, 2020, Nintendo released an "Mr. Sakurai Presents ???" livestream that revealed Byleth from Fire Emblem: Three Houses as the final (and only first-party) member of the Fighters Pass Vol. 1, set for release on January 28th. The 7.0.0 update wasn't mentioned but it would include their stage: Garreg Mach Monastery, 11 new tracks added to all Fire Emblem stages and 5 more Mii costumes including Altaïr from Ubisoft's Assassin's Creed and indie star Cuphead, with a music track from his game, Floral Fury. It was also revealed that Ultimate would receive a second DLC pass called Fighters Pass Vol. 2 that will consist of six more playable newcomers instead of five like the first one. Said pass is expected to have all six fighters be released by December 31, 2021.
In a Nintendo Direct Mini held on March 26, 2020, a representative from ARMS was announced to be the first fighter in Fighters Pass Vol. 2. The new fighter was revealed to be Min Min in a presentation held on June 22, with a release date of June 29.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate received universal critical acclaim from both critics and the audience, with several critics calling it the best installment in the series. They praised its large amount of content and fine-tuning of existing Smash gameplay elements, although its online mode received criticism. It was estimated that the game sold over 5 million copies worldwide within three days of release, making it the fastest selling Switch game.
The game has sold 12.08 million units as of December 31st, 2018, marking it as the fastest selling Nintendo game in history. As of March 2019, Ultimate has sold 13.81 million copies, which is greater than the total number of sales for the Wii U console. Since then, the game has sold 15.71 million units as of September 30, 2019, making it the best selling game in the series, and also making it the best selling fighting game of all time (previously held by Super Smash Bros. Brawl with 13.30 million copies).
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate currently holds an aggregate review score of 93% on Metacritic, tying it with Brawl as the highest-rated game in the series on the website, and held a score of 92.17% on GameRankings prior to it's shutdown.
At The Game Awards 2019, Ultimate was nominated for Best Fighting Game, Best Family Game, and Game of the Year. It won Best Fighting Game, though it lost to Luigi's Mansion 3 and Sekiro: Shadows Die Twice, respectively, in the other two categories. In a first for the awards show, a separate, tournament-style nomination called Player's Voice allowed fans to vote on certain games that they deemed their favorite; Ultimate successfully made its way to the final round of voting, though it lost to Fire Emblem: Three Houses.
- This is the first Super Smash Bros. game to:
- Not be announced alongside new hardware since the original Super Smash Bros.. Super Smash Bros. Melee was revealed alongside the final retail version of the Nintendo GameCube at E3 2001; Super Smash Bros. Brawl was announced alongside the Wii itself, then-codenamed Revolution at E3 2005; and Super Smash Bros. 4 was announced alongside the Wii U at E3 2011. Moreover, unlike the latter two games, this is the first time since Super Smash Bros. Melee that a Smash Bros. game is not announced years in advance, as Super Smash Bros. Brawl was announced in 2005 and revealed a year later, and Super Smash Bros. 4 was announced in 2011 and revealed two years later.
- Not feature the involvement of Satoru Iwata, as he passed away on July 11, 2015.
- Be released in the same year it was announced since Melee.
- Have no veteran characters cut since Melee.
- Have a simultaneous worldwide release.
- Have both the English announcer and voice actor of Master Hand and Crazy Hand unchanged, with Xander Mobus reprising his role from Super Smash Bros. 4.
- Allow a boss to be playable without hacks or glitches.
- Have all of its veterans announced prior to launch and at the same time.
- Feature more unlockable characters than starter characters.
- Feature third-party universes with more than one character.
- Feature a third-party universe with more than one stage in the same game (counting both versions of Smash 4 as separate).
- Feature third-party universes with more than one Assist Trophy.
- Have more returning stages than new stages.
- Have no unlockable stages.
- Not to have the announcer speaking between fights during pre-match loading screens in Classic Mode.
- Feature Assist Trophies from third-party universes without playable characters (Bomberman, Shovel Knight, Monster Hunter, and Virtua Fighter).
- Have a lyricized theme song in both English and Japanese.
- Have all characters share the same amount of alternate costumes.
- Introduce more new third-party universes with playable characters than first-party universes.
- Feature a universe owned by a current console rival to Nintendo (Banjo-Kazooie, owned by Microsoft).
- However, Banjo-Kazooie was originally a second-party Nintendo property prior to Rare's acquisition by Microsoft.
- As Rare is located in the United Kingdom and Microsoft is located in the United States, this also makes Ultimate the first game in the series to contain a major universe which is not created nor owned by a Japanese company.
- However, Banjo-Kazooie was originally a second-party Nintendo property prior to Rare's acquisition by Microsoft.
- Not feature a new remix of the Super Mario Bros. ground theme, Jungle Hijinxs from Donkey Kong Country, or The Legend of Zelda main theme (if one does not count the Termina Field remix).
- Because of the size of the USK icon on the game's box art, the German version has a slightly different variation of said box art: Pikachu is moved upwards, Yoshi is completely missing, and the logo is off-centered.
- Ultimate's release date falls one day after the late Satoru Iwata's birthday, December 6 (which was also the release date of for Wii U in Japan).
- This is the third Super Smash Bros. game to have an Adventure Mode, the first being Super Smash Bros. Melee and the second being Super Smash Bros. Brawl.
- This is the second Super Smash Bros. game where characters can be unlocked without battling them first, the first being Super Smash Bros. Brawl; in both cases, characters can be unlocked directly through Adventure Mode.
- This is the second Super Smash Bros. game to feature hand-drawn artwork on the box art, with the first being the original Super Smash Bros.
- Counting DLC, though, Ultimate is currently tied with Brawl for the second-highest amount of newcomers at 18 (beaten out by Smash 4's 21), the second lowest amount of new stages at 12 and is currently ahead of Melee in terms of new character-based universes introduced by 4 (with Persona, Dragon Quest, Banjo-Kazooie and Fatal Fury being added as DLC).
- Discounting ports of older games, this game marks the only appearances of Geno, King K. Rool, Zero Suit Samus, Ridley, Dark Samus, Ness, Lucas, Ice Climbers, Roy, Ike, Pit, Palutena, Dark Pit, Olimar, R.O.B., Wii Fit Trainer, Little Mac, Duck Hunt, Isaac, Richter Belmont, and Banjo & Kazooie on the Nintendo Switch as of 2020.
- Of these characters, Ridley, Ice Climbers, Pit, Palutena, and Little Mac all appear in ports via the Nintendo Entertainment System: Nintendo Switch Online software. Little Mac also makes a cameo appearance in Luigi's Mansion 3 in a framed poster of him in his victory pose with Doc Louis and Mr. Sandman in the background.
- It also marks the first, but not the last appearances of Samus, Pichu, Greninja, Incineroar, Joker and Hero on the Nintendo Switch.
- This game marks the 100th performance credit of Charles Martinet as the voice of Mario, a landmark for which he received a Guinness World Record for the most video game voice-over performances of a single character.