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Machinima / Super Smash Bros Machinima

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The medium of Super Smash Bros. machinima started picking up back in Super Smash Bros. Melee, with the use of the game's Camera Mode and Debug Mode, the latter of which could only be accessed through hacking. In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, the use of replays, along with various cheat codes and further game mods, made machinima a more quicker, easier process. Though comedic films and series are common, a notable subset Smash Bros. machinima are dramatic series that made heavy use of tropes common in Anime; right down to the Anime Theme Song, matching credit sequences, and even eyecatches. Smash King is arguably the most prominent, if not codifying, example of this and has inspired numerous imitators.

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The influence of anime tropes, which has been a turn-off to certain viewers who see it as derivative and uninspired, coupled with the long period of work and polish that goes into some of the more notable series, as well as Machinima.com abandoning actual machinima in favor of gaming and fandom-related content, all had a hand in the decline in the medium's popularity over the years. Many Smash directors have also expressed issues in their personal lives that have caused the hiatus and/or cancellation of many long-running series.

However, it's the learning curve for softmodding a Wii console and using more advanced Brawl mods that are some of the major reasons for the decline in the use of Super Smash Bros. Brawl for machinima. Another factor might be the general casual audience of recent Nintendo consoles (including the Wii U), whereas the PlayStation and Xbox consoles have had far more success in targeting the hardcore gaming crowd. More importantly, in the realm of PC gaming, Garry's Mod and Source Filmmaker have become the preferred choices in creating machinima.

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The release of Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS and Wii U in 2014 saw further challenges. The ability to save replays on an SD card was gone, forcing directors to use their console's hard drive instead. A modding scene was eventually developed around Super Smash Bros. for Wii U, but it was geared towards enhancing the game, rather than building on the mods developed for Brawl.

Though nowhere near as prominent as it once was, the medium of Super Smash Bros. machinima continues onward with the release of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. Ultimate's replay system is far more forgiving towards prospective machinimators, as the camera can be controlled to a greater degree than in Brawl and Smash 4. Replays can once again be saved on a microSD card, and Ultimate features an in-game editor that allows directors to remove unwanted elements such as the UI or background music: in past installments, this necessitated the use of mods and turning the music off completely. Time will tell if these features entice a new generation of machinimators to contribute to the genre.

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Alternative Title(s): Smash Bros Machinima

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