News Article

Masahiro Sakurai Confirms Super Smash Bros. Changes to Edge Grabbing Mechanics

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

If you have the skills, this stuff matters

While Masahiro Sakurai's daily Miiverse posts are entertaining in their own right, in recent weeks he's been revealing more tid-bits of info on features and fighting mechanics in the new Super Smash Bros. titles. While not wholly revealing in themselves, they're gradually painting a picture of a development process that's finalising key details; hopefully all is on target for that planned 2014 release.

Today's update may be of interest to those always confident in their ability to save themselves in a tough spot. When trying to avoid a death sometimes clinging to the stage's edge can be a last resort, and the most dedicated of players no doubt have instincts on how the systems behind this move work. Sakurai-san has described some changes in the new entries that should shake this up a little.

In addition to that post, the developer also posted a follow-up comment with more information.

Some other changes include:
-Air time and accumulated damage will determine your period of invincibility while hanging on an edge.
-Grab controls will no longer be affected by whether you have above or below 100% damage.

Are you interested in these sorts of tweaks and changes, or happy just to tap buttons and see if you can score a win regardless? Let us know in the comments below.


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User Comments (41)



5ony said:

Guess you could say this article... GRABBED my attention.
Eh? Ehhh?
Well, I wasn't much of a serious player, so I guess this doesn't affect me. Still neat, though.



Humphries90 said:

I didn't realise there was much of a mechanic behind it? I'm not sure I understand the change.



Prof_Clayton said:

This means that edge grabbing will likely be used less, as it was a way to get back onto the field after being smashed off, as you are usually hit off with high damage. That together means you need skill to get back, amd can't just hang there... and it basically shifts the battles more towards land then in air.
And letting grabs be trumped means that there will be less time spent on the edge...
All in all, their goal was obviously to keep people from making returns as often after smashes, especially against serious players, giving them an edge if they are in better health and not being flung around.



NintyMan said:

Now people won't take so much advantage of hanging on the edge as much. I feel this is to keep flying characters like Pit in check.



TheEmerlLad said:

Oh. This is good news. A chance of survival from my buddy who is the edge-grab king. The pleasure of kicking him off the ledge will be oh-so-sweet.



KeithTheGeek said:

More like keeping Meta Knight in check. He practically defined planking in Brawl.

The comment regarding "grab controls" essentially refers to how characters would have slower get up, roll, and ledge attack animations above 100%. The invincibility comment is also fairly straightforward, though he makes no comment on whether you'll have more or less invincibility as your percent goes up...I'm assuming more, since they're making the changes to 100% animations.

But, I don't know how drastically this will affect ledges. It was already possible to snatch the ledge before a recovering player in past games. I'm assuming this will just let you grab the ledge after a player's invincibility time has run down, but I could be wrong. If so, though, why not just hit the ledge grabber with a strong meteor? I guess this is something I'll have to see in action to get a better grasp on how it works.



SphericalCrusher said:

Sounds good. I would love a good way to kick those off, who are clinging on, as long as it does not become cheap.



RickyNGmr said:

There's many characters that makes grab the edge simpler than others... I think this time around they will try to make it more balanced, influenced by the damage % and/or how much you'll be able to hang in there! I believe remembered on melee or brawl, if you was too much time on the edge something happen within the stage animations that makes you fall (star fox/metroid stages)



Joalro said:

I'm pretty sure what this means is that you can't edge hog any more. If a character is holding onto the edge, another character can actually push them out of the way in order to get back on.

This is SUPER helpful when using characters who have grappling returns, like Olimar, where edge hogging is essentially insta-death.



erv said:

This is quite big news actually, the edge grab controls are a major part of how to play smash. I wonder whether or not the percentage increase will mean a weaker or a longer edge grab. I kind of was used to a perfectly timed down slap on someone hanging from the edge but perhaps the variable time will make the opposing player less immune to surprise spikes down



AlexSora89 said:

I don't lean on edges that much, so this doesn't affect me.
Still, I have a feeling Smashboards (and SmashWiki as well) is gonna have a field day with this one.



AdanVC said:

I'll be honest, at first I was like "Wait is this suppose to be good or bad?" since I'm not that much of a hardcore Smash Bros player but I've been reading that this is a pretty good thing and it can make battles more dynamic like it was in Melee. Looks like Sakurai is looking at every single detail of the game very carefully to make the perfect combination game between Brawl and Melee (wich is in some cases, more appreciated than Brawl because of the speed and perfect balance between controls/characters) This could be the greatest fighting game ever!!!



rjejr said:

My kids may be the right age when this comes out to learn this stuff. They love playing the games but are all about the bashing. Went to a tournament and they were very surprised to see how many people were grabbing and using force fields. We came home and they practiced that stuff a bit but decided it wasn't as fun that way and just went back to pounding on each other. Since this game will be new to everybody maybe they'll play differently. And maybe the world will get enough Wii U that the new game becomes tournament playable.



DarkKirby said:

I don't have a problem with changes, and these sound okay, but I would like to see them in practice. No matter how sound something may be in theory the only thing that really matters how it works when put into practice.

I can only hope this is to make the game more fun, interesting, and/or balanced and isn't about making the game easier or more random, or worse, reduce the effectiveness of edge guarding, which was a great part of Melee but was noticeably more absent from Brawl.



Balaclavab said:

I remember on Brawl there was a tactic in which, after using a smash attack to send an opponent off to the side or bottom of the screen, you could then go and jump off yourself, and grab hold of the ledge, meaning the opponent you sent flying had less chance of getting back on the stage, as they couldn't grab the ledge.
I guess this means that's no longer a guaranteed method to prevent an opponent from grabbing a ledge, but, as far as I can remember, I only successfully pulled it off once anyway.



SecondServing said:

So here's my guess to how Nintendo is going to spread out their exclusives.
February: DKCTR
March: Mario Kart 8
May: Smash Bros
August: Bayonetta
September: Yoshi's Yarn
October: X
November: the inevitable Zelda U

It's only a matter of time when we'll get that legendary Direct.



rjejr said:

@SecondServing - Nice line-up, and the ND can't come soon enough considering all the bad news of late and there's only 10 days left in Jan.

My less optimistic take on your dates:

Feb is DKCTF, it was probably already mostly finished anyway
ND says MK8 in April, but it gets delayed into May. (If it were March they wouldnt have a lowered their Wii U projecton from 9m - 2.8m as March 31 is the end date of their fiscal year so they know it won't be out before April)
May - actual MK8 date so SSB will have to wait, it will probably get an "Autunm or Q3" listing in the ND anyway
Aug sounds good for B2
Sept - if Yoshi's Yarn does come out I think it will be a holiday (Oct/Nov) release like the 2 Kirby games on Wii, but that's quibbling
Oct - Yoshi, X won't be out this year those games take FOR-EVER, maybe next March
Nov - SSB; Zelda will be unveiled at E3 so Nov 2015 is more likely
Dec - maybe Wii Music U or Sports Club Resort 2, something "causal"

I hope you are more right than I am, and I hope something big is coming out for the holidays that hasn't been announced yet. And Dynasty Warriors Hyrule should be out some time this year.

If either of us are close it should still be a good year for Wii U.



Groosenator said:

@AlexSora89 You'd think so, wouldn't you? Normally we would, too. Today, however, we're too obsessed with the (potentially fake) leak of Palutena. There are roughly 300 viewers on the rumors thread over there as I type this.



Funny_Moblin said:

@rjejr "Nov - SSB; Zelda will be unveiled at E3 so Nov 2015 is more likely" even though this is a speculation, I just got really excited reading that.



FriedSquid said:

I've never been one to care much about the mechanics in the Smash games (which is why I've never had a preference of Brawl or Melee) but this sounds like a great change.

On another note, "Livin' On the Edge" by Aerosmith is in my head now.

(Also, @Thats-what-she, just wanna say I see what you did there. Nice username/avatar. )



retro_player_22 said:

Is there a new mechanic where we can fight our way out of Kirby's mouth? It would really be helpful as Kirby player usually had the advantage when it comes to sucking.



Funny_Moblin said:

but if Donkey Kong used the grab for the plain wall grab will that be under the effective line?



luckybreak said:

make it more like melee! this sounds like a nice balance. the auto edge grab in brawl was overly strong, you were practically magnetically pulled to it. hopefully they balance it



mamp said:

This sounds pretty good I wonder what other cool new mechanics they'll add to this game.



Blue_Yoshi said:

Its great that they're nerfing these cheap, pro skills that are unnecessary and balance the game taking away the wall between pros and joes. I always thought the tiering system was really stupid too.



LavaTwilight said:

They sound awesome. Am I right in guessing then that it's like Link grabbing Mario, dragging him off the edge and clinging to it himself, all in one fell swoop?



LavaTwilight said:

Tbh, I don't think Nintendo will bother with a Wii Music U, despite it's cult following and initial sales, it wasn't really a commercial success. Also Zelda for the Wii U to be announced at E3 isn't a guarantee!
Don't trick us with false hopes!



rjejr said:

@LavaTwilight - Zelda wasn't a trick, it was a reply to somebody who was putting out imaginary dates so I added a few of my own. Would you believe anything anybody said w/ my puppet cat Mario icon?

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