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Nightmare Fuel / Super Smash Bros. Brawl

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Overall, this game takes the Darker and Edgier approach, with more realistic textures and darker themes, so this game has plenty of scary moments, to the point where The Subspace Emissary, the game's Adventure mode, has its own section on this page.

The Subspace Emissary
And another realm falls to Subspace.

  • At the beginning of the campaign, the arena gets nuked with a Subspace Bomb, which basically pulls that part of the world into another dimension for Tabuu to do whatever he wants with. The characters flee before it is bombed, and the arena reappears later in the Great Maze for a boss fight, but nobody seems to care about rescuing the audience: never mind the Inferred Holocaust to the R.O.B.s who got sucked into Subspace.
    • Notably, the Subspace Bomb goes off right as Kirby runs past, with no indication until several seconds later that he and the princess you rescued make it out in time on the Warp Star.
  • Meta Knight's battleship, the Halberd, becomes a harbinger of the Subspace Army for most of the campaign. Wherever it shows up, it carpet bombs everything with shadow bugs while making unholy roaring, and darkens the sky with a shroud of blood red clouds to boot.
  • So the Koopa Troopas and Goombas maintain their cartoonish bright colours and designs. You’d think Bowser and Petey Piranha would share this? Nope. The two are much more faded in colour and given more realistic textures alongside more intimidating roars (a direct contrast to their more well known cartoon yells). While this is downplayed in the case of Petey, Bowser looks much older, as though he’s been around since the beginning of time.
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  • In the Halberd Interior level, there's a room the player passes through with nothing but unreachable glass cages that appear above and below them. It showcases various enemies you've faced throughout the mode, except for one: Mizzo. On the bottom row of cages, second to the right, there is this enemy that appears nowhere else in the game, and it's just… stuck there.
  • Donkey Kong's first appearance shows him smashing a Koopa Troopa into the ground, sending green shell-shards flying everywhere. While Koopa Shells are treated as clothing for Koopas in the Marioverse, here it seems more like Donkey Kong crushed the spine of one.
  • During The Ruined Zoo, after the Porky battle, Wario shows up with his Trophy Gun. He tries shooting at Ness a few times, but Ness dodges with ease. Then, he decides to aim at Lucas instead. Ness takes the blow for him, and Wario then approaches his Trophy and manages to scare Lucas away. We're then treated to the lovely scene of Wario maniacally laughing at the fact he essentially just killed a child. The lightning effects don't help matters. It comes off as bone chilling to anyone who associates Wario as the greedy yet comedic anti-hero in his home series.
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  • Pikachu stuffed into a jar and electrocuted, used as a source of electricity, doesn't look like a pleasant time for him.
  • Samus getting worfed by Ridley: grabbed and scraped against the wall. It is fairly striking in its sheer brutality. So much so it got worked back into the Metroid series in Metroid: Other M. Wall scraping and all.
  • The player faces a giant, purple, yellow-eyed Diddy Kong, corrupted by Shadow Bugs, almost bordering on SNK Boss on the higher difficulties due to his massive size and power.
  • Mr. Game and Watch has no concept of right or wrong and is able to be controlled by just about anyone, and is totally willing to go along with it no matter how mistreated his kind is, similarly to Wreck-Gar's Transformers Animated incarnation.
  • Aside from the Dedede Brooches, trophies cannot self-revive after a fighter falls in battle. While they are simply not conscious, they could be sealed in a trophy for a very long time… and they could stay that way if the victor of the match hates them that much, or are much of a Jerkass (like Wario).
  • The Subspace Gunship that emerges from the hole created by the detonation of the Isle Of The Ancients. It's main gun works like a Subspace Bomb and Word of God says that it rends space infinitely. On top of that, it's five secondary turrets are all individually powerful enough to utterly annihilate the Halberd and fire three shots per burst. If that doesn't kill their enemy, there's at least two more of the earlier mentioned turrets and five cannons that fire curving shots on either side. Had Kirby not struck a critical weak point with the Dragoon, it's very likely that would have been the end of any resistance against the forces of Subspace.
  • When Link and Zelda revive Ganondorf in the SSE, he seems to be recovering from the beatdown Bowser laid on him (he's groaning and holding his head like it got hurt really badly). This implies that the trophy characters feel any pain they receive(d) before/in trophy form.
  • King Dedede and Bowser face off in the Subspace realm at some point, and in the background, there's Master Hand, just lying there, apparently in critical condition.
  • The eerie Subspace themes providing a chilling, tragic rendition of the normally uplifting main theme of the game, get more unnerving as you progress.
  • The Save Rooms in the Great Maze is desolate, with the sky being ripped apart to reveal the eerie darkness that is Subspace. The music is a slow, unsettling arrangement of the once triumphant main theme of the game.
  • Tabuu, the mastermind behind the Subspace Emissary. He's a floating digital person...thing, a borderline SNK Boss with highly damaging attacks, including his signature Off Waves, which can KO you in one hit on standard difficulty if you don't know how to do a perfect shield or spot dodge. This guy controlled Master Hand though chains of light planted beneath his skin, hence the bit mentioned above. No one even knows where he comes from, and he does not say a word. He just comes out of nowhere, and in one scene, even when the player thinks our heroes have finally fought their way to the heart of Subspace and they are ready for the final battle, Tabuu just trophies them all at once with a single Off Wave before they can do anything. Their Mass "Oh, Crap!" is rendered in slow motion for added drama. And when you return to the world map after this scene, none of them are available to select as playable characters. When our heroes get to Tabuu after being rescued in the Great Maze, he almost does this again and it's only Sonic's intervention just before the attack hits that saves everyone, since this time Dedede's brooches are used up.
  • When Tabuu is defeated, every location is brought back from the Great Maze except the Isle Of The Ancients, which has been reduced to a bright shining scar in the sky, the exact same one as in the introduction of the game. It could be implied that the location was utterly destroyed in every way possible by the detonation of so many Subspace Bombs at once.
  • The various enemies you face in the Subspace Emissary are also unnerving to think about.
    • Armights fly out of the background with a creepy Evil Laugh when they appear. An Armight appears to be some sort of mutated, blue-skinned, dismembered head with two pointy tentacles and a Roman helmet. Funny mustaches aside.
    • Floows: floating, shadowy, wraith-like creatures with beady, red eyes that follows the player everywhere and regenerates as fast as they can be damaged; their main attack is to stand in place and let out a ghastly, tortured shriek as hundreds of smaller ghosts fly out of its body. The bio on its Trophy say it harbours "pent-up resentment" and "one part sadness, one part madness".
    • Puppits: corpse-like things with really long claws that just hang lifelessly from a string until they come across the poor unsuspecting character in their way, then they start attacking like crazy. Their trophy description points out that "nobody knows what's on the other end of the string".
    • Shaydas are giant black entities with big swords for arms. And incidentally, they appear similar to the Master Core from Super Smash Bros. 4.
    • Bytan looks like a mutant Poké Ball with a sharp-toothed grin, and reproduces by popping another Bytan out of its eyeball, which also multiply if not killed fast enough. They form huge, terrible swarms. Giant Bytans also have a nasty habit of dropping in on the player with no warning.
    • Bombeds decapitate themselves to attack, and then run around like a beheaded chicken until they grow a new head and repeat everything all over again. Their heads are bombs.
    • Bucculus hides in the ground so you can't get at it until it attacks and often won't notice it until it ambushes you, and drains the life out of you with giant spiky lips.
  • Even without prior knowledge of the Mother series, the boss battle against Porky is scary, either for the spider robot or for the boy in question - Porky - trapped inside it, apparently screaming; in fact, the entire Ruined Zoo level seemed to be slight-to-extreme Nightmare Fuel, because of how it contrasts with the brightness of the SSB world, and starts with Lucas from Mother 3 chased by an unstoppable Pig King statue. Prior knowledge of both Porky from EarthBound and the actual Ruined Zoo from the first Mother, if added to the picture, makes it worse.
  • When the R.O.B blast the Grand Minister and just leave him to burn after Ganondorf controls them. Sure, he survives, but knowing that he truly cares about the R.O.B and that-controlled- they would just attempt to kill their master makes this pretty unsettling.
    • Doesn’t help that R.O.B have blank expressions.

Other modes and the overall game

  • This game introduces Final Smashes, very powerful and sometimes cinematic special attacks. But some of them aren't so pleasant.
    • Mr. Game & Watch's Final Smash involves him turning into a giant octopus that hovers around with its undulating tentacles, with a constant ominous and unnatural humming sound throughout the whole thing. Let's just hope you haven't seen anything..."not safe for work," or this could get even more uncomfortable.
    • When Pit summons Palutena's Army, the Centurions actually die after striking the enemy, as pointed out by the trophy: "their deaths are not in vain". At the very least, Kid Icarus: Uprising confirms that Palutena just brings them back to life.
    • Luigi's Final Smash, the Negative Zone, is an incomprehensible attack that inverts the colors of an area and makes opponents easier to knock away and gives them status effects. It's supposedly the manifestation of Luigi's negativity.
    • Bowser's Final Smash turns him into Giga Bowser. He was scary enough in Melee, but now, for the precious few seconds he exists, he is completely invincible. The only thing you can do is run until it wears off, but given his titanic size and deceptively high speed, he will catch you. The only thing that can save you from Giga Bowser is if the player misses a platform and accidentally kills themselves, putting this into another category alltogether.
    • Kirby's Final Smash involves him turning into Cook Kirby and boiling anyone unlucky enough to get caught in the attack alive. J-Jesus...
  • Link has an alternate costume that turns him into Dark Link, complete with black clothes, grey skin, and red eyes, which, while freaky, isn't too bad. Toon Link on the other hand, with his bigger, cat like eyes, also has a Dark Link alt, resulting in a much scarier look. They both retain these in the following instalments as well, with Young Link getting the same treatment when he returned in Ultimate.
  • Challenger Approaching fights are back, and they’re even worse. Replacing Melee's matrix-esque background and the deep mechanical warning siren, when you unlock a fighter in Brawl the game freezes for a split second before showing off a pitch black screen with a red spotlight on the unlocked characters silhouette, as crudely pasted letters spell out “CHALLENGER APPROACHING”. The warning siren is now very loud and panicky, and if you listen closely you can feel an eerie rumbling near the end. All of this happens very suddenly, without warning, and the mood of the game changes for the worse. Don’t be surprised if your son or daughter starts asking for a nightlight after seeing this. Hell you might need one if you’re easily disturbed.
  • This game's rendition of the already creepy Luigi's Mansion theme was made even creepier.
    • It also serves as the muse for Brentalfloss's lyric video.
  • Norfair in SSBB has lava plumes and occasional lava run-off appearing on left or right taking that portion of the screen, and sometimes, a huge lava flow comes straight at the screen and you have to take shelter from it.
  • The conversation with Colonel Campbell if Snake uses the radio successfully while facing Luigi. They begin with discussing Luigi's second banana status but eventually move on to Luigi's magic powers. Suddenly the Colonel trails off and starts chanting "La li lu le li lu le lo...": so either the Colonel is actually the fake Colonel from Metal Gear Solid 2: Sons of Liberty, or Luigi just took over his mind. It's kind of creepy either way.
  • The Ultimate Chimera in New Pork City is just as much of The Dreaded as it was in its home appearance. When it appears, the screen turns black and it Instant KO chomps on you if you get too close. There's also no way of truly defeating it; you can only stun it.
    • Somewhat mitigated if it ends up on the breakable platform at the bottom of the stage. It can be defeated by making it fall to its death. It will keep respawning even still, however...
  • Hacking experiments on SSBB which involved "Moveset Swapping" have resulted in some fan-made nightmare fuel characters. Such as Pikaman (Pikachu with Ganondorf Moveset), Stub Link (Toon Link with Meta Knight Moveset), and Witch Peach (Peach with Sonic Moveset).
  • Luigi FINGERS EVERYONE because WHY NOT!?


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