It’s not much to go by, but we now have an actual screenshot from what appears to be the single player mode in Super Smash Bros. for 3DS. The image appeared on series director Masahiro Sakurai’s Miiverse page, where he asks simply, “Where am I……??”
Despite the resemblance, Sakurai reminds us almost immediately that the upcoming game does not feature a single player experience akin to The Subspace Emissary from Super Smash Bros. Brawl:
To be clear, the new Super Smash Bros. games do not feature a story mode like The Subspace Emissary.
Fair enough, Sakurai, but what exactly is this image from then? It could very well be that Sakurai mentioned Subspace Emissary to reiterate that the upcoming games will not feature pre-rendered cutscenes ala previous Smash Bros. entries. As a matter of fact, the image is reminiscent of the Adventure Mode from Super Smash Bros. Melee more than anything else – perhaps a modernized take is in the works? I’d be all for it, though it would have to be damn good given the resurgence of Nintendo platformers in recent years. Somehow I feel as though awkwardly hopping through side-scrolling levels with fighting-game controls may not be as compelling as it used to be.
As far as where Mario actually is in the image… it’s a bit more difficult to say. Someplace from the Metroid universe? Maybe, if it weren’t for the bright green grass underfoot. The Twilight Realm? A new locale altogether? All three feel equally as feasible as they do unlikely. As with most things Super Smash Bros. these days, there’s not much else to do but patiently wait.