Video Games

Amiibo Figures and Super Smash Bros. Are a Brilliant Combination

Super Smash Bros Wii U

I’m pretty sure that Nintendo considered amiibo figures a risky bet from the get-go, and this probably explains why amiibo are in such short stock for the 2014 holiday season. Making really limited runs of figures probably seemed like the smartest business choice, as those figures can’t be cheap to produce. (The quality of the sculpts and the paint jobs is really high.)

But damn it, if you can get your hands on a few, definitely go for it, especially if you’ve got a copy of Super Smash Bros. for Wii U.

Unlike some of the people weighing in on the topic, I am a firm believer in Smash’s implementation of amiibo functionality.

Super Smash Bros Falcon Punch

Let me put it this way: I never really got all that good at Smash, despite investing dozens of hours into Brawl. My problem was that playing against A.I. characters only allowed me to reinforce my bad habits, as they never really put up much of a fight. However, when fighting against human opponents, I typically go with a round-robin ruleset that allows the winner to keep playing until defeated while the losers rotate out. I was almost always the one to lose, thus I’d get kicked out of rotation too fast to develop actual strategies.

But the amiibo players grow with you. A low-level amiibo might function at the same level as an unskilled A.I. opponent, but a level 50 amiibo will outperform any CPU player, even on the highest difficulty setting. In the time I spent fighting against amiibo characters, I found myself improving at a much faster rate than I ever had before.

With amiibo, solo players have a new way to hone their tactics, with an ever-evolving metagame as your amiibo learns to counter your moves and you learn to counter your amiibo’s. Your skill level grows alongside and in direct response to that of your amiibo and vice versa.

Amiibo - Diddy Kong and Donkey Kong

Plus, setting up eight-player amiibo battles and just watching them go at it is way more fun than it sounds.

So, screw the naysayers. I love all of my amiibo, and now that I’ve played Smash with them, I can’t imagine myself going back to an amiibo-less lifestyle. I just need to figure out how to quit spending so damn much money on these things. I’ve become a real addict.

Josh Wirtanen owns this place and has opinions about pretty much everything. Follow him on Twitter: @joshuajwirtanen.