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Time Is Running Out For Super Smash Bros. Ultimate Fighters

"Super Smash Bros. Ultimate" director Masahiro Sakurai announced in a recent presentation that the next "SSBU" DLC fighter will be the last. "Smash Ultimate" already includes over 80 characters, which is the largest cast of any of the series' past iterations. It had to come to an end sometime.

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Sakurai revealed this information when presenting Kazuya Mishima from "Tekken," the latest DLC fighter to join the roster, in a pre-recorded video. He confirmed that his team would working from home to develop the final fighter until the end of the year. They expect to release this character in 2021.

Sakurai already warned fans from the beginning that Nintendo would mostly have the final word in adding new characters to the game. He said that the abundance of sword fighters wasn't something he was particularly happy with but that he couldn't do anything about it. Unfortunately, the process of choosing characters for SSBU is complicated one. The team has a growing list of characters that didn't make it into the game.

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Who's the chosen one?

Players have wishes from almost every genre across the industry. Despite the outcry against "anime sword fighters," fans have received a reasonable number of characters that don't fit that description. Steve from "Minecraft," Banjo from "Banjo and Kazooie," and the Dog from "Duck Hunt" are only a few. In fact, some fans might want even more sword fighter-adjacent characters, like Sora from "Kingdom Hearts." Popular characters and requests might also appear as Mii Fighter characters. For example, "SSBU" added Dovahkiin from "Skyrim" as a Mii Fighter. 

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Stakes are high, considering that this will be the last fighter for "SSBU" and possibly the last one Sakurai will create. The "SSBU" director told Famitsu earlier this year that he was toying with the idea of retiring early. After all, the long workdays (which can total up to 12 hours) and demands of the fanbase make it hard to focus on anything else. Even so, Sakurai claims that compiling these characters into a single product has "meant a lot" to him.

"Now that I think about it, it's been close to 10 years since 'Super Smash Bros.' for Wii U and Nintendo 3DS was in development. I've been working on this for a long time. You could call it my life's work," he mused at the end of the video. It almost feels like a callback to the interview with Famitsu — like a goodbye.

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