Now, I know an article with a potentially inflamatory title like that is going to invoke some strong emotions. “How dare she think that Fantasy Life is somehow better or more exciting than Super Smash Bros ?” There could be rabble rousing, and that’s fair. So allow me to start this with an explanation.
I am absolutely excited about Super Smash Bros . I already have a pre-order in, and almost went ahead and purchased a digital version from the eShop on my Japanese 3DS LL earlier this month, so I could have it sooner. However, despite the joy that Super Smash Bros will undoubtedly bring, I am far more excited about Level 5’s Fantasy Life , which comes out on October 24, 2014.
My reasons are varied. First and foremost is the fact that we have been waiting so long for any hint of Fantasy Life outside of japan. It was originally released there back on December 27, 2012. Almost two years is a long time to wait for a game. I mean, for a while it seemed like we might never even get it. To learn at E3 2014 that it was still in the works, and would be coming later this very year, was a delight.
It’s because Fantasy Life is a game with an impressive pedigree. That isn’t to say Super Smash Bros isn’t. It’s just that there are so many amazing forces that colluded to make Fantasy Life happen. This is a Level-5 title, and we know Level-5 games excel. Especially when other developers, like h.a.n.d. and 1-Up Studio (formerly Brownie Brown), are called in to assist. Yoshitaka Amano created the character designs. Nobuo Uematsu scored it. There’s so much star power here, and the game shines all the brighter as a result.
Most importantly, we’re getting the absolute best version of Fantasy Life . It’s one that’s prepped and ready to be upgraded to Fantasy Life Link , should someone be willing to spend a little extra cash on an expansion. Not that it’s completely necessary. Online multiplayer, one of the biggest reasons for owners of the original Fantasy Life to upgrade, is going to be part of our version of the game right out of the box. But it’s just good to know that we aren’t just getting a game we’ve waited years for, but that it could also be upgraded to the best version of the game immediately.
Though, I suppose the most heartening thing about Fantasy Life ‘s release, the part that makes this launch feel more important than Super Smash Bros , is that it’s happening at all. With a game like Super Smash Bros , we always knew we’d get it. It was a given. That wasn’t the case with Fantasy Life . It went untouched for so long. The fact that Level-5 and Nintendo worked together to ensure it received a North American and European release makes us feel special. It shows the voices of people who have been watching and wanting it were heard.
It isn’t as though there’s some kind of war. Fantasy Life and Super Smash Bros aren’t competing for our affections, and there’s enough of a gap between their release dates where someone could reasonably afford and purchase both the moment they launch. Still, I can’t help but root for Fantasy Life a little more, and feel more satisfaction knowing that in a few weeks, I’ll finally be enjoying this game on my 3DS.