Back in the late 1990s, Masahiro Sakurai and the late great Satoru Iwata worked in secret on a radical new project that would pit many of Nintendo's most popular characters against each other in a brawl. Nintendo eventually greenlit the project, and Super Smash Bros. was born on the Nintendo 64. The crossover fighting game would quickly become a huge hit, and Nintendo realized its long term potential.
Fast forward 20 years and Smash is one of Nintendo's biggest franchises of all time. Each new entry in the series featured a bigger and more diverse roster, culminating in the massive Super Smash Bros. Ultimate roster we have today. In celebration of the 20th anniversary of Smash's Japanese debut, Sakurai sent out a thank you message to fans.
"Smash Bros. is 20 years old today! Over these 20 years, I've seen so many people enjoy this series in so many ways – at home, at hangouts, at conventions, even in business offices! Development has always been hard on me, but I'm supremely happy. Thank you so much for playing." — Masahiro Sakurai
After all these years Smash is still going strong, and early sales suggest Ultimate could be the most popular iteration yet. Thanks for all of your hard work, Sakurai! Here's to many more successful, fun years of Smash!