I often talk about games that are among the finest ever made—exemplars of engineering and bastions of creative storytelling in a world often chock full of diss-worthy games like Pikmin. (Yes, I am a hater. Thanks for asking.) But, that’s not just limited to Naughty Dog games, or my obsession with Pokémon, which has changed the way the world thinks about handheld gaming and game merchandising. There are also games like Shadow of the Colossus, which are an easy response to anyone who might tell you that video games aren’t art.
However, I haven’t really talked much about the funnest games ever made, and any list thereof would undoubtedly include the Super Smash Bros. series. At its essence, SSB is a response to the question “What if we took everyone’s favorite video game characters and made them fight?”
Since 1999, this game series has been a smash hit (sorry!), and an ideal party game. One of the things that makes this series so cool is that it’s always been totally accessible (and actually intended for) casual players, but it has also developed a profound competitive following, with tiers and all. For those of you not familiar with competitive gaming, what it means is that there are people out there who take video gaming way too seriously, devoting many hours of their life to doing math about something that is supposed to be fun. (Yes, some people find math fun. I am not some people.)
Math aside, if you leave anything around for too long, eventually people are going to find a way to hit each other with it. Allow me to introduce you to the The3GI, a group of now-twenty-somethings with a website that rivals Golden Week Tokyo for garishness, and a passion for making funny videos about games and stuff. They’ve been at this for about ten years, and four of those years ago they had a great idea: stage a real life SSB Tournament. This mostly consists of dressing up like idiots and hitting each other, and if you find that sort of thing funny, please do your best to keep control of your bladder as you watch this:
I know what you’re thinking: “Yes, friendly neighborhood blerd, that’s funny, but it was four years ago, so why is it your Web Crush? Do you think you can just waste my funemployed Wednesday mornings like this?” First of all, let me say that I utterly respect your funemployment and that you spend some part of it reading my inane rantings. Secondly, it’s not my Web Crush. This is:
That’s right, this live action Super Smash Bros. Tournament is back in business! As you can see, their methods have evolved slightly (but only slightly), but the hijinks are as ridiculous as ever. Ness fights Lucas, Fox fights Pikachu, etc. Now, this is dumb. This is powerfully dumb. These are grown-ass adults risking life and limb to re-enact fights from a video game. Which also makes it perfect.
That being said, there’s a fair amount of artistry here. Surely there’s no great costume design budget here, but The3GI goes to great length to recreate effects, items, and special moves from the game, including Snake’s box and the Super Scope. Honestly, the most impressive part about these videos is either the sound mixing or the willing of these cool cats to embarrass themselves for our amusement. They are a testament to the ingenuity and passion of nerds, and we are lucky to count them among our ilk. You can watch the rest of their videos here.
It seems that they rebooted their series in the run-up to the fourth installment in the Smash Bros. series, which you should be very excited about. If you haven’t been paying attention to announcements that have been coming out since before E3 2013, it’s going to feature some old favorites, and great new characters like Megaman. I’m counting down the I-have-no-idea-how-many-days until I have a new Smash Bros. to play between rounds of beer pong and episodes of Project Runway. If you need some way to pass the time till it debuts, why not check out this Smash Bros./Attack on Titan mash-up?