Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is only five weeks away. Meanwhile, Smash 4’s competitive season seems to be winding down. It’s almost surreal to see once vibrant tournament venues growing emptier week by week. With Ultimate quickly approaching, interest in Smash 4 is definitely on the decline. However, it may not be wise to drop the game altogether just yet. There’s a lot that people can brush up and improve upon before Ultimate’s release. Here are a few reasons why you shouldn’t drop Smash 4 just yet.
Back to Basics
Fundamentals will always take you far, in any sport. This is also very true for Smash. Even if you don’t have the best technical skill to pull off intricate combos, having a good grasp of Smash fundamentals will always keep you in the game. Of all the games in the series thus far, Smash Ultimate is looking to have a fair chunk of its DNA derived from Smash 4. With that in mind, it isn’t unreasonable to believe that Smash 4 works as a great tool to prepare for Ultimate’s release. Even with the many differences in mechanics and fighters between Smash 4 and Ultimate, principles still apply.
One of the biggest fundamentals players should focus on is rolling and air-dodging. Smash Ultimate looks to favor a much more aggressive playstyle then previous entries. Options like rolling are much more punishable, especially when spammed. So if constant rolls are a problem for you in Smash 4, Ultimate isn’t going to do you any favors. A key focus point in preparing for Ultimate would be to avoid rolling unless absolutely necessary. Playing Smash 4 and making it a point to avoid rolling will do wonders for you in Ultimate (and in any Smash game, honestly). Also brushing up on when and when not to air-dodge wouldn’t hurt.
No matter how good you think you are, no matter how much you train – nothing can prepare you for tournament pressure. There’s just a certain feeling that comes from playing in tournament that can’t be replicated when playing at home. Knowing that every game matters, knowing that you have to perform well enough to move on – these factors change how you approach your playstyle in matches.
Moreover, these things can take a toll on a player’s mentality. Even going from playing friendlies at a venue to your match in bracket is a much different feeling. These feelings only intensify if your match is on stream. The pressure to perform well in front of an audience can easily overwhelm a player. Performance anxiety can kick in, and can cause you to make simple mistakes or mess up combos you’ve practiced hundreds of times at home.
Playing with high stakes can’t be easily replicated. If you’re looking to seriously pursue Ultimate competitively, you need to play in every tournament you can right now. This especially applies to players who have never attended a tournament. This game is definitely going to bring many newcomers to the scene, and those newcomers could definitely benefit from the experience. If you unfortunately have no access to tournament venues, there is still hope. Playing a friend in a money match, even if just a dollar, is a good way to simulate a high pressure situation. Play matches against friends in a group setting to simulate performing for a crowd. Whatever you have to do to get the high stakes feeling going, do it.
Variety is Key
Lastly, a good way to to prepare for Ultimate is to practice using every character. With so many characters in Ultimate, there will undoubtedly be many characters you will be interested in. With that being said, however, there are definitely characters in Smash 4 that you barely touch. Credit to Beefy Smash Doods on YouTube, for making a great point about learning a new character to prepare for Ultimate. Learning a new character will challenge you and change the way you approach the game. Playing as many unfamiliar characters as you can before release can really benefit a player.
Playing against all characters in Smash 4 will also be a huge help. There are so many unique characters in Ultimate that it will be hard to practice for every matchup. The best you can do right now is to learn as many matchups in Smash 4 as you can. Study matchup charts for your characters, and learn the lesser known characters to avoid losing to an unfamiliar matchup.
Smash 4 isn’t dead just yet, and if you want to be your best in Ultimate, it would be wise to keep your Wii U for just a little longer.
What will you practice in Smash 4 to prepare for Ultimate? Let us Know down in the comments below!
Featured image courtesy of JunkieMonkeys.
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