With the release of each of the last few Super Smash Bros. titles, series director and incredibly hardworking man Masahiro Sakurai has claimed that it could well be his last. Continuing this trend, Sakurai is now treating Super Smash Bros. Ultimate as potentially being the final Smash game.
Disussing the game after its reveal during the Nintendo Direct E3 presentation, the franchise's director said the following:
"The Smash series may continue in the future, but I don’t know if we’ll ever be able to pull this off, so I really hope you’ll enjoy this iteration of the game."
Of course, after the release of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS, Sakurai explained how even the games before those were created "with the thought that there wouldn't be any more sequels". He's also regularly mentioned the negative effects that the creation of these games have on his personal life and health, with an always-demanding workload and need for perfection making it hard for him to carry on.
It seems that, at least after each launch period, Sakurai feels like it would be a good time to stop, before eventually going on to make another one anyway. In the case of Super Smash Bros. Brawl, Nintendo famously announced the game during the 2005 E3 conference before Sakurai even knew about it, going on to ask him if he'd direct it shortly after. Hopefully this time around there will be less pressure put upon him to carry on if he chooses to step down.
Either way, the amount of work Sakurai and his teams have put into these games over the years is clearly tremendous, and we're sure you'll join us in wishing him the best whatever the future holds.