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Battlefield

The Battlefield stage in Brawl is an example of a typical stage in the Super Smash Bros. series.

A stage (sometimes called a map or board) is a location in which characters fight or complete objectives. The word "stage" usually refers to a versus mode stage, but can also refer to the ground or large central platform within this location. As well as versus mode stages, single player mode stages, such as the Target Smash!! maps, exist for purposes other than fighting.

Versus stages

In all three games of the Smash series, most versus mode stages are available from the start, while a small number must be unlocked by completing certain objectives. Most stages, like Congo Jungle, are derived from places in playable characters' universes. In Super Smash Bros. Melee, an abstract stage, Poké Floats, was introduced, as well as two Smash Bros universe stages - Battlefield and Final Destination. In Super Smash Bros. Brawl, stages derived from games without associated playable characters were introduced, namely Smashville and Hanenbow, while PictoChat represents a Nintendo DS utility interface. Additionally, not every playable character has a stage from their own universe. Included in Melee" and "Brawl" are a small number of past stages - stages from the previous Smash game with no major alterations.

Stages range in size from the large Hyrule Temple and New Pork City to the small Onett and Brinstar. Typically, stages involve a large central platform with ledges and one or more smaller platforms, as well as blast lines above, below and to the left and right of the visible area. Some stages, such as Yoshi's Island and Distant Planet have floors that continue past the edge of the visible area and pass through a side blast line, these edges are known as "walk off edges" or "walk offs", because characters can walk offscreen without the need to become airborne. Stages with walk off edges on both the left and right, like Bridge of Eldin, are sometimes called "walk off stages". Some walk off stages, such as Onett, have no lower blast line.

In Super Smash Bros. Melee, moving and transforming stages were introduced. Big Blue and Rainbow Cruise consist entirely of platforms that move or appear on and offscreen, while stages like Infinite Glacier and Rumble Falls scroll continuously up or down. Other stages, such as Pokémon Stadium, undergo partial transformations at certain intervals, while others, like Brawl's Frigate Orpheon and Castle Siege cycle through complete transformations. Mushroomy Kingdom may be one of two stages depending on either luck or player's input prior to the match.

Other stage elements include breakable barriers and platforms, such as the pillars of Luigi's Mansion and the stone floors of Skyworld; stage hazards and enemies, such as lasers, cars and Klap Traps; local items such as apples; and interactive objects such as Barrel Cannons. While water has no effect on movement in Melee, Brawl introduced swimming, and many of its stages involve water that can be swum in.

In Brawl, the appearance of some items, namely crates and barrels, differs depending on the aesthetic style of the stage they appear on. The following is quoted from the DOJO!! website.

"Previously, wooden crates and barrels were pretty much garden-variety. This time around, these items change visually to match the mood of the stage. On sci-fi type stages they take on a futuristic tone. On more fantastic stages, they look more like presents."[1]

In Super Smash Bros.

There are nine versus stages in the original Super Smash Bros., eight starters and one unlockable: Mushroom Kingdom, shown in bold.

In Melee

There are twenty nine versus stages in Super Smash Bros. Melee, eighteen starters and eleven unlockable stages, shown below in bold. The three past stages are unlockable.

Melee stages

Past stages

In Brawl

There are forty one versus stages in Super Smash Bros. Brawl, twenty nine starters and twelve unlockable stages, shown below in bold. None of the original Super Smash Bros. stages return, but there are ten "Melee stages", one from each universe involved in the original Super Smash Bros.

Brawl Stages

Melee Stages

Tournament legality

Some stages are banned in competitive play because they are considered disruptive or unfair. See Banned stages.

Single player stages

In the single player modes and challenges, a number of stages appear that are not available in versus mode.

  • Brawl and Melee's Home-run Contest stages involve a central platform from which Sandbag is hit, and a very long stretch of ground to the right of the platform, for it to land upon.
  • In Melee's "trophy tussle" event matches, the player fights CPUs upon a stage that takes the form of a giant object, the trophy for which he or she wins after completing the event.
  • The original Super Smash Bros. Board the Platforms stages function as agility tests, and there are twelve in total - each one is designed to challenge the player's character.
  • Like Board the Platforms, Break the Targets and Target Test stages of the original Smash Bros. and Melee respectively are tailored to challenge each character - twelve exist in the original and twenty five in Melee. Some of Melee's Target Test stages are decorated in reference to their character's universe; Pikachu's, for example, has decorative Poké Balls in its walls, while the Ice Climbers' look like a level from the game Ice Climber. Brawl, however, simply has five Target Smash stages for all characters, each representing a different difficulty level.
  • Areas in Adventure Mode and the Subspace Emissary are technically defined as stages.
  • Brawl's Online Practice Stage is playable only while waiting for an online match to load.
  • Brawl's Configure Test stage is playable only for the purpose of testing custom controls, and only as Mario.

In Super Smash Bros.

In Melee

In Brawl

Non-playable stages

Some stages exist in the original Super Smash Bros. and Melee, but are non-playable; developers did not intended for them to be played in. Non-playable stages are accessible only through hacks and debug programs, such as Action Replay. Some, such as "Test", are assumed to have been used for testing during game development, while others, such as the "Tutorial stage", are used in the game but not for the purpose of gameplay.

In Super Smash Bros.

In Melee

In Brawl

  • 1-Player Mode Credits - the file name of the single player mode credits is "STGCHARACROLL.pac" which technically defines it as a stage.
  • Results Screen - the results screen that appears after a match is a stage, playable only through hacking.[2]

Custom Stages

Brawl introduced the Stage Builder, a tool that allows players to build their own stages, for use in multiplayer matches, using sets of provided objects, some unlockable. Brawl includes a set of Sample Stages that were built using the Stage Builder. The stage builder can also be used to build No KO stages and "CD Factories" - exploitative stages used for quickly obtaining CDs.

References

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