MISHAWAKA – The new Nintendo Direct that aired Feb. 17 listed not only a selection of games coming later this year or early next year, it also announced the next character for Super Smash Brothers.
At long, long, LONG last, a Xenoblade Chronicles 2 representative has made its way into Smash, pleasing me to no end. Pyra and Mythra, the deuteragonists of the game, were announced at the beginning of the Direct on Feb. 17. Though not much is known about their move set exactly, they are two characters in one, with players being able to freely switch between the two as they see fit. This is identical to the way they work in the original game.
I, for one, am ecstatic at their arrival, as they have been my most-wanted characters ever since the game was announced. I was so disheartened to learn that Masahiro Sakurai had not added the protagonist, Rex, due to time constraints, and made him a Mii costume instead of a fully-fledged character. I almost lost all faith that they would add any Xenoblade Chronicles 2 character after that, but since a few characters in the game also had Mii costumes, I held out hope.
Words cannot express how overjoyed I was when the announcement came on screen. Words can express, however, how disappointed almost every other Smash fan felt about the addition, and express it they did on Twitter. Leagues of fans commented under several official announcement tweets about how disgusted they were (using much more colorful language), leading me to believe that this is the most controversial character since Byleth, the last “anime swordfighter” to be added.
The main gripe with the characters is not necessarily the characters themselves, but more so with the type of character, derisively referred to as the “anime swordfighter.” As I mentioned in my earlier piece on Byleth, sword-based characters adorn the roster, leading fans to take issue with the lack of creative and novel characters, or, and this is much more likely, the lack of characters that they want.
All in all though, fans complaining about the new character is nothing new and will happen with just about any new introduction. My perspective on the character, however, is nothing short of elation, and I could not be more excited at the prospect of new people learning about Xenoblade Chronicles 2, and the entire series, as it is certainly one of my favorites and deserves more recognition than it has.