Due to the subject matter of our posts this Monday & Friday, some items may be NSFW. Barring some terrible graphics, we’re sorta aiming for PG-13 screenshots here, but, given everyone has a different threshold, anything potentially offensive will be behind the “Read More” links du jour. And this time, we’re hitting the ground running, so just a warning that we’re “too hot for Smash” already…
Ladies and gentlemen, this is Mai Shiranui:
She is a popular character in the Fatal Fury/King of Fighters series. She is (give or take an Athena), the most prominent female fighter the franchise, and has been for 29 years. It was also noted by Smash Bros. director Masahiro Sakurai in November of 2019 that Mai was not allowed to appear in Smash Bros. And, to be clear, she was not excluded from being a playable character, she was forbidden from appearing in the background. Why? You know why. She’s too much woman for an E for Everybody(ish) game.
And that sucks.
Smash Bros. has always had a problem with women. The first game had one woman (well, one confirmed woman, Pokémon are kind of variable), and, for better or worse, she could have been mistaken for a genderless robot. The following title offered a pair of princesses and half of an ice climber. Super Smash Bros. Brawl added exactly zero(suit) new women. Super Smash Bros. 4 finally added some women that weren’t entirely known for being rescued or committing genocide, but even then, it revealed that Nintendo’s stable of prominent women was pretty lacking. Maybe you get a female variant on the “default” male hero of a game, but, other than that, you are still stuck with a few Greek/space goddesses and a fitness instructor. Looking at the Nintendo roster of “Smash Sisters”, you would be forgiven for noticing more weird lizard monsters in the cast than women.
But DLC is a chance at redemption! Nintendo may be terrible about introducing new, memorable female characters, but that is not true across all companies. … Or, maybe it is, because it is still assumed videogames are a boys’ club, and that is all it will ever be. But still! Europe apparently overwhelmingly voted Bayonetta into Smash Bros, so it is entirely likely there are hundreds of millions of people out there clamoring for more women for Smash. And there are so many videogame women available on the Nintendo Switch! Let’s look at a few!
Panty Party – Warrior of Love
What are we looking at? This is the game that inspired this article. The main character is a teenager that is identified as the “Warrior of Love”, and she now has the ability to transform into a pair of sentient panties and fight other panties that are apparently also sentient and weirdly heavily armed. Go, Warrior of Love, fight for everlasting (panty) peace!
Why should this character be in Smash? For better or worse, the Nintendo Switch has become the new Sony Vita. All the weird, generally horny titles that previously hung out in Sony’s ghetto have now invaded Nintendo’s most prominent system, and it is high time Nintendo acknowledged that. Fighting panties are not technically risqué in any way (they’re just, ya know, underwear), so they could still sneak in there without rankling any feathers. And would the Warrior of Love be a tacit admission of exactly what is creeping around the eShop? You better believe it.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Despite each pair of panties having a surprisingly robust moveset (they have swords, guns, grenades, and all sorts of options tucked… somewhere in there), it is very improbable that Warrior of Love will make the cut. It is unfortunate, but underwear modeling apparently takes millions of man hours to work properly, and it is unlikely anyone would want to expend the effort to create proper fighting panties on the Switch again.
Senran Kagura – Asuka
What are we looking at? Forget flying panties, if you’re going to pay tribute to horny videogames, you may as well go with the postergirl. Senran Kagura is arguably the reason Sony handhelds became known for clothes-ripping action, and that has well and truly migrated to the Nintendo Switch in various forms. While we haven’t seen a proper Senran Kagura beat ‘em up on the Switch yet, we have had a pinball game, and a game that… is all about touching? Some kind of groping simulator? Yeah, okay, this doesn’t look abhorrent at all…
Why should this character be in Smash? Look, there are a lot of games out there based on the conceit that straight men want to see half-dressed women. But a lot of them are incomprehensible and about as fun as sticking your more sensitive bits of anatomy into boiling lava. Senran Kagura, though, has done a good job initially of marrying Final Fight gameplay to horny times, and then graduating to becoming its own kind of Warriors title. And it works! It is fun to play Senran Kagura games, and if you are going to admit to gaming’s worst kept horny secrets, you may as well do it with the main character from the best. And she can use cool ninja moves, too, so maybe we could do it with a Sheik/Greninja clone.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? If Mai can’t squeeze through the door, then it’s unlikely anything shaped like a character from Senran Kagura will ever be allowed to be acknowledged. Shulk can run around in his underwear for funsies, but Asuka would never be allowed the same courtesy. Gee, what’s the difference there…
Shantae (Franchise) – Shantae
What are we looking at? The Shantae franchise premiered on the Gameboy Color in 2002, and has had sporadic releases on Nintendo consoles straight through to 2020. It is the story of a half-genie heroine that often battles through Metroidvania-esque environments by using dancing magic and/or pirate booty. The Shantae franchise boasts a surprisingly intricate cast of heroes and villains, but the star of the show…
Why should this character be in Smash? Shantae is the best. She can whip things with her hair, transform into a monkey, and goddamit I shouldn’t have to finish a list after already plainly stating “transform into a monkey”. She can do what we’ve all fantasied about! And look good doing it! Shantae is probably the best bet on this list for actual inclusion, as she already snuck in as a spirit (like Min-Min), and Nintendo has consistently had a great relationship with Shantae’s handlers. She was featured on the second-to-last issue of Nintendo Power, for crying out loud!
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Does “half dressed belly dancer” sound like something that is going to work for all ages to you? Because, to me, it sounds like something that is never going to be allowed, particularly if she starts breaking out the ol’ dance moves for a final smash. Princess Peach is allowed to pirouette around the field, but she is still hiding that most forbidden piece of anatomy, the navel. Shantae and Ulala are going to have to stick to the sidelines while the Squid Sisters take the stage.
Waku Waku 7 – Arina Makihara
What are we looking at? Maybe you require something more “classic” from your Smash roster. In that case, we have got Arina of Waku Waku 7, a Neo Geo fighting game from 1996. Unlike most fighting games, Waku Waku 7 prominently featured its begoggled female star, and this game that launched its rerelease alongside the Nintendo Switch would be an ideal way to feature the past.
Why should this character be in Smash? Arina is a classic “anime” fighting gal. She appears to be some manner of bunny, she wears goggles, and she can shoot rainbow stars at her opponents. And since she originated from a fighting game, she has a complete moveset that would adapt to smashing as easily as we saw with Ryu, Ken, and Terry. And don’t worry, censors, this is a Neo Geo character that isn’t dressed any more provocatively than Jigglypuff.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? It breaks my heart to say it, but roughly seven people are aware of the existence of Waku Waku 7. No, there were not six other games in the franchise, and there certainly was not a Waku Waku 8 as a follow up. It is hard to imagine a game that is less known on even just the Neo Geo, and that is including World Heroes.
Skullgirls- Filia Medici
What are we looking at? Or maybe we need a more modern, successful fighting game. Filia is generally considered to be the main character of Skullgirls, a fighting game released a bit more recently than Waku Waku 7 (but still almost a decade ago). It is a modern success story, as it went from a completely unknown IP to one of the more well-known fighting titles out there, complete with its own successful Kickstarter campaigns and cell phone gacha game (or… something?). And, oh yeah, it is a fun videogame to play, too. That always helps!
Why should this character be in Smash? Filia represents a class that is not yet available in Smash Bros: a morpher. While some characters seem to dabble in this field, Filia is from a Darkstalkers-esque universe where her every move can transform her into a drill, horse, or some manner of spinning hedgehog creature. The appeal of Filia (and, arguably, all of Skullgirls) lies with the glory of morphing sprites, and a Smasher that went full hog into this conceit would be a joy to watch and play.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? There is not a single Skullgirl, Filia included, that ranks lower than a 90 on the fanservice scale. It is unlikely Nintendo would ever consider taking a risk on a character that is introduced in her own story mode via an immediate panty shot. And, oh yeah, Minecraft Steve is our one person limit on promoting a toxic creator.
BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle – Practically Anybody
What are we looking at? BlazBlue: Cross Tag Battle is a fighting game that offers a lot of options. Obviously, this title includes some of the most prominent fighters from the BlazBlue franchise, but it also includes luminaries from Persona 4 (Arena), Under Night In-Birth, Senran Kagura (again), Arcana Heart, RWBY, and Blitztank (which isn’t super heavy on female characters, but does include a tank that is also a skeleton). The stars of RWBY alone would add some diversity to the Smash Sisters (nobody on the current roster wields a scythe at all), but the other franchises involved have never shied away from varied, interesting women, either. And they all come preloaded with complete movesets, too!
Why should this character(s) be in Smash? Do you want a squirrel girl? A vampire? A witch? A gunner? Well, there may already be a gun-witch in the Smash cast, but there is a severe lack of vampires and/or squirrels. And that is only if you look at the BlazBlue section. Once you slide in some Velvet Room residents, mix them with one or two ice princesses, and then slide in whatever is happening with the blonde with giant fists, and you’ve got more variety than has ever been seen in Smash Bros. What’s the hold up on including literally any of these characters?
Why won’t this character(s) be in Smash? Too horny. Everything about this game is deeply and (occasionally, weirdly) horny. There cannot even be two biological sisters on the same team without some implied incest happening, and Smash Bros. already has enough trouble with Mario and Luigi kissing between rounds. Also, the Persona cast is involved, and we’ve already got one Joker that is wanted for too many sex crimes.
River City Girls – Kyoko and Misako
What are we looking at? In 2019, Wayforward released River City Girls, a title similar to River City Ransom, but with the significant change that the previously kidnapped “girlfriends” are now doing the rumbling. Another delightful change? The game is as gorgeous as its protagonists are brutal, so, complete with excellent beat ‘em up gameplay, makes for a pretty fun time. And there are sidequests! I am… sidequest agnostic.
Why should this character(s) be in Smash? We need a new “duo” of characters (like those icy weirdos), and a pair of inseparable brawlers would fit the bill nicely. The River City Girls are going to have an easy time smashing a fire tiger or space dragon just as effortlessly as they make any given student at the mall barf, and there is a lot of potential in a joint moveset beyond the preexisting “swings hammer”. And if you really needed some male representation, then I guess you could palette swap them for those other guys…
Why won’t this character(s) be in Smash? Super Smash Bros. has always had a sort of… plausible deniability when it comes to violence. Like, yes, K. Rool is punching Mario until he can see the curvature of Zebes, but he is not really punching, he’s, like, “smashing”. You see? Completely different. This is why Villager can take a sword to the face without issue, and Samus’s exterminating beams simply crackle. The River City Girls, though? They do not smash. They punch. They kick. They leave bruises, and nobody wants that. They might fit the Smash dress code, but they are a level above the student conduct contract.
Blaster Master – Sophia III
What are we looking at? Maybe we should explore something more classic, but less violent. How about a tank? Tanks are our friends! Blaster Master is a classic gaming franchise that has gone through a few permutations over the years (did you play the Playstation 1 version? Don’t.), but its recent releases have been as well received as the original adventure. It is the best of old and new all in one package!
Why should this character be in Smash? Why bother with Jason when you can have Sophia III rolling around? The tank is what everybody remembers, and the tank is what’s got all the cool weaponry, so bring out the tank, guys! And it would be a fine opportunity for another woman on the roster that, like Samus, isn’t just there to because someone liked her silhouette.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Oh, the latest Blaster Master titles fully realized “Sophia” as a human-looking alien AI named Eve? Cool, let’s take a look…
… Oh dammit. Moving on.
Wonder Boy – Tina/Tanya
What are we looking at? The Wonder Boy franchise has been around nearly as long as Mario, but it has also suffered a resurgence recently as every other studio seems capable of releasing a Wonder Boy title nowadays. And why not? Everybody loves running around and eating fruit or fighting dragons or whatever the hell is happening in any given Wonder Boy title. I think the boy got turned into a mouse at some point?
Why should this character be in Smash? Tina has been the Princess Peach to (Wonder) Boy’s Mario since the start of the franchise, so she definitely has the credentials to fit into the classic category (unlike some galactic princesses-come-lately). And now, in a number of these Wonder Boy games, Tina is a playable character. Or maybe she’s just a gender-swapped “Wonder Girl”? It can get confusing. But that would be the point of Tina’s inclusion! Make the “female variant” hero the norm for all videogames, classic and otherwise! Support (wonder) women across the generations!
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Oh, who am I kidding? Master Higgins will get in before Princess Leilani. Though that does give me an idea…
Crash Team Racing – Liz
What are we looking at? Liz is a bandicoot woman that originally appeared as a “trophy girl” in Crash Team Racing, and then resurfaced as a playable character in Crash Team Racing Nitro-(Re)Fueled. She is a character in a kart racing game, so she doesn’t have much of a personality, but you can tell from her comments and actions that she likes to win. That is more personality than “I’m finished!” had when he got into Smash!
Why should this character be in Smash? Okay, follow me here. Practically everything about Smash Bros. at this point is designed to make the fans feel good. The gameplay, the continual deluge of “trophies”, and even the DLC announcements are all meticulously calculated to cause as much joy in its particular audience as possible. And, let’s be real, there’s a pretty large group of people that would be happy to see Crash Bandicoot show up. So why not subvert that expectation? Why not, in an act of petty revenge for the Playstation 1 era, tease the big bandicoot, and then present… Liz. You know, Liz! From the racing game! The internet will crash from the sudden rush of nerds logging onto the Bandipedia.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Odds are kind of low anyone wants to figure out a moveset for “bandicoot that can race a car”. I mean, it worked for Captain Falcon right out of the gate, but two racing characters adapted to a 2-D platforming environment? Preposterous!
BoxBoy! + BoxGirl! – Qucy aka BoxGirl
What are we looking at? Here’s an easy one! HAL Laboratory has been cranking out delightful little BoxBoy! titles since 2015, so it is high time we see some representation of this delightful puzzle game in Smash. If the Kirby orb can sneak in there, we can certainly live with a playable box.
Why should this character be in Smash? Qucy’s main skills seem limited exclusively to being a box/creating boxes, but she is a little more versatile than you think. Did you know she can grapple onto ledges? That’s more than Little Mac can do! And she is good with springs, so she can jump better than that loser Captain Toad. And do not forget that Steve introduced “box creation” to the Smash Bros. universe, so we could see more of that skill from someone that is slightly more box-adept.
Why won’t this character be in Smash? If you thought Mai was too revealing, Qucy is naked save for her bow. Immediate disqualification.
Mr. Diller Drill Land – Anna Hottenmeyer
What are we looking at? Since we are on the subject of puzzle titles, Anna here is the rival of Susumu Hori, the iconic star of the Mr. Driller series. She is the second best driller in the world, first appeared in Mr. Driller 2, and is officially two drills high. She seems destined to be a second banana, so it is only appropriate for this woman to take the top spot in a Smash appearance.
Why should this character be in Smash? Smash Bros. has a distinct lack of woman rival characters. Dark Pit, Ken, and Star Wolf can all sit around and talk about how they loathe their more popular counterparts, but that little get together is going to be a complete sausage party. Let Susumu in, Nintendo, and watch her employ that unmistakable mix of rivalry and romantic crush that drives all the boys crazy. Or maybe I just want to write some heterosexual rivalry fanfiction for Smash Bros. for once. I’m tired of being stuck with all this yaoi!
Why won’t this character be in Smash? If Dig Dug’s entire bestiary already snuck into Super Smash Bros 4, the poor guy is just going to start crying if his son’s rival gets an invite, too. I hate to drop a woman for the feelings of a man, but one does have to admit that the Hori family should enjoy a little limelight.
Infinite Beyond the Mind – Tanya
What are we looking at? Infinity Beyond the Mind is a “retro” style action/platforming game featuring two women taking down an entire army. The action is very Mega Man/Castlevania-esque, and requires a deft hand and a general understanding of how many evil soldiers one can cut down in a handful of seconds.
Why should this character be in Smash? The low-bit days of gaming did not really have many female protagonists, so if Mr. Game & Watch is going to ever meet a Mrs. Game & Watch, we need something that is a little more modern. Tanya would fit the bill, as she develops an increasingly robust moveset alongside her psychic powers, and she even gets a costume upgrade or two across the adventure. In short, she is a great mix of old and new, and what else is Smash Bros. but a perfect blending of classic and contemporary?
Why won’t this character be in Smash? Unfortunately, Tanya and Olga aren’t even the most interesting characters in their own game. As usually happens, even with the limited storytelling of Infinite Beyond the Mind’s retro staging, the big bad of this story is much more iconic. She has an eyepatch! And looks like some manner of space pirate! And don’t say this is a surprise, as whoever has been promoting this game made her the prime covergirl over the actual protagonists. Granted, there is nothing saying a game cannot only send in a villain…
Bloodstained: Ritual of the Night – Bloodless
What are we looking at? Bloodstained is the latest title from the man that put the IGA in Metroidvania (wait a minute). It stars Miriam, a perfectly fine female protagonist that is never going to be in Smash Bros. Why? Because the idea of Miriam fighting the for-real Simon Belmont is too good for this fallen world, so let’s see who could also leap into Smash from the Bloodstained stable…
Why should this character be in Smash? Bloodless is more than a wannabe vampire that can telekinetically manipulate blood into a weapon, food, or gothic clothing. She wields an umbrella (which those with a keen eye will note is not a sword) and she can utilize it in both horror or Mary Poppins-esque settings. She can also form blood into a variety of shapes (mostly weapons), so her moveset is only as limited as your imagination (you want her to create blood-geese? Sure!). And, hey, she’s got the added bonus of wearing a dress that gradually degrades as she takes damage, so she could double as a rep for the hornier sides of the Switch. This not-so-tall vampire lady is ready to take Smash by (blood) storm!
Why won’t this character be in Smash? I cannot conceive of a single reason the Boba Fett of Bloodstained that wears breakaway clothing and subsists entirely on human blood will not be the next Smash Bros. DLC character. This gal is a lock! Sorry I wasted any time with the other suggestions! Now I need to get back to panty on panty violence, so have a great day!
Wankery Week #12 Panty Party
- System: Nintendo Switch and Steam. I feel like we’re going to see that a lot with Wankery Week titles going forward…
- Number of players: Four. You are never going to play this game with another soul, but four players nevertheless.
- Maybe actually talk about the game for a second: This is basically an arena shooter ala Splatoon, but with panties. And… it’s not terrible? Like, okay, yes it is terrible, but it could be so much worse. You have a lot of options for combat… or at least three… and at least one pair of panties gets a bazooka… so… that’s nice? When you get down to it, it feels like an old FPS where you spend about 90% of your time strafing around your opponent, which I think means this is a retro title? Look, I was expecting this game to be abhorrent, but it’s only kind of boring. So that’s a win?
- Could you play this with someone else in the room? If they have a sense of humor, sure. This game does not take itself seriously, and it technically is not pornographic in any way, so you might be able to get away with it. That said, it is still kind of difficult to explain why you are currently controlling sentient underwear.
- What’s in a plot? This is basically a parody of a magical girl anime wherein the main character learns of some horrible, invasive evil kingdom, and she uses her new mystical powers to transform into a protector of love and justice. Except its panties. The evil empire is panties, the magical girl transforms into panties, and your ultimate enemy is secretly panties in disguise. It is extremely tongue-in-cheek, and the writing knows exactly what it is doing (even if the translation proof-reading is a bit slapdash). Unlike some games, this is consistently a plot that never takes itself seriously, so it does at least get its tone right.
- Favorite Pair of Panties: The “cool” Teddy Bear Panties wears a pair sunglasses that is straight out of Gurren Lagann, so that’s our winner by default.
- Did you know? “Underwear fetishism” is not considered a paraphilia (previously referred to as a sexual deviation). This basically means that a bunch of nerds wearing labcoats have (fairly arbitrarily) declared it psychologically normal to be turned on by panties. So, apparently, if you are peeping at underwear, you are not going to be sent to horny jail. Thank you for reading.
- Would I play again: No thank you. The best aspect of this game is its humor, but its gameplay leaves a lot to be desired. Extra points for making washing machines “panty spawn points”, though. That was inspired.
What’s next? Wankery Week continues/concludes on Friday with Gun Gun Pixies! More shooting! More horny! Less Smash Bros! Please look forward to it!