Tuesday, 1 January 2019

Video Game Character of the Month - January 2019 - Master Hand - Super Smash Bros.

Video Game Character of the Month
January 2019
Master Hand
Super Smash Bros.
Ah yes, the personification of the creative spirit itself, Master Hand. The greatest being in all of the Super Smash Bros. Universe, nay, the entire universe. Beautiful, all-powerful and... *help*... the greatest *puppet-master* ever. No fighter will ever defeat Master Hand and he will grant himself all the Video Game Character of the Month Awards that he wants... *HE'S WRITING THIS, RU...!*
And now for a little bit of information on Master Hand:
Spoilers for Subspace Emissary and World of Light ahead:

Master Hand is the physical embodiment of the creative spirit
He is a giant white glove
His counterpart is Crazy Hand - the embodiment of the destructive spirit
He shares the same voice actor as Crazy Hand and the announcer of each Super Smash Bros. game
The English voice actors are Jeff Manning (SSB.), Dean Harrington (Melee), Pat Cashman (Brawl) and Xander Mobus (SSB.4 and Ultimate)
His idle pose consists of him simply clenching his fist, although, due to the lack of time between attacks, this can only be seen in the original SSB. and in Melee/Brawl using the Master Hand glitch and boss control codes respectively or in SSB.4 when Crazy Hand attacks by himself
Melee and Brawl are the only games in the series where Master Hand does not have his own theme song
However, in Brawl his battle music is a slightly altered version of the Final Destination theme
Master Hand is playable in Melee using a glitch and in Ultimate in World of Light mode
In Melee, Brawl and SSB.4 Master Hand fights only in the right-hand corner of the stage (with Crazy Hand fighting in the left)
In SSB. and Ultimate, he is free-roaming
Ultimate is the first game where Master Hand can be stunned and incapacitated during battle
Rather than being knocked off the screen, Master Hand is defeated when his HP is reduced to zero
He is the final boss of Classic mode
He as similar attacks to Wham Bam Rock from Kirby Super Star/Kirby Fun Pak
He appears to control the fighters in the SSB. universe and may have brought their trophy/plush doll selves to life
He was controlled by Tabuu during the Subspace Emissary as part of Tabuu's plan to control the various fighters of the SSB. universe
He is not powerful enough to defeat Tabuu
The meaning of his existence is unknown but he enjoys challenging chosen warriors who've claimed many victories
He is right-handed
He resides in Final Destination
He experiences no knock-back from your fighters
He toys with his enemies rather than using his full strength
In SSB.4 he contains various creatures, namely Master Giant, Master Beast, Master Edges, Master Shadow, Master Fortress and Master Core
In Ultimate's World of Light mode it is revealed that there are multiple Master Hands
Master Hand has also appeared in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror as a mini boss
He also appears in Kirby Squeak Squad, although he is made up of black particles similar to the Master Core

Origin of Master Hand:
In Universe - Not much is known about the origin of Master Hand. In the original Super Smash Bros. he places the plush dolls of two random characters on a table and carefully positions objects around them. Then he counts down from three on his fingers and snaps them. The objects are changed into a stage resembling Peach's Castle and the plush dolls come to life to fight. He can then be fought at the end of the 1-Player (Classic) Game, in which he has 300 hit points that must be depleted. Once this has been achieved he explodes while floating away into the background. After the final results screen, a cutscene plays which shows the player's character transformed back into a plush doll form and the sound of a closing door playing. Does this mean that the animated dolls fought back against the child playing with them? And that the child rage-quitted and turned them back to inanimate dolls?
Out of Universe - While we don't know for certain what led to the creation of Master Hand, it has been theorised that he represents the creative hand of game director Masahiro Sakurai himself, and that Crazy Hand represents the want of Sakurai to stop making Smash Bros.. Whether this is true or not, I don't know.

Evolution of Master Hand:
In Melee, Master Hand reprises his role in Classic Mode, although he now only faces one direction and his HP and power change with the difficulty. In addition, he has now lost his out-of-fashion cuff, instead just fading to nothingness below the wrist. Furthermore, his left-handed partner, Crazy Hand has joined him. The pair can combine to perform powerful combination attacks. The duo also appear in Event 50: Final Destination Match as boss characters.
In Brawl, Master Hand returns in Classic Mode yet again as well as having a role in Adventure Mode: The Subspace Emissary. He is the one giving orders to Ganondorf, Bowser and Wario, although it is later revealed that he was under the control of Tabuu. After Ganondorf is knocked back by Tabuu, Master Hand is freed as Ganondorf falls onto the chains of light binding him. Master Hand attempts to strike Tabuu but is beaten with little effort, collapsing onto the ground in defeat. What happens to Master Hand afterwards is never revealed.
In Super Smash Bros. 4 he is once again the final boss of Classic Mode. He now shares a HP meter with Crazy Hand in intensities 3.1 or higher. In intensities 5.1 or higher, Master Hand rips open for Master Core to emerge for the final battle. Master Core can mutate into Master Giant, Master Beat, Master Edges, Master Shadow and Master Fortress. Furthermore, Master Hand now rules over his own mode, called 'Master Orders' where he orders the player to partake in various special games such as battles and Home-Run Contests to get rewards in exchange for tickets.
Finally, in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, Master Hand returns as the final boss of several, but not all, characters' Classic Mode routes. He also appears in Adventure Mode: World of Light, where it is revealed that there are many Master Hands. These Master Hands are seen approaching the fighters alongside Galeem. They unravel to reveal glowing masses of energy which are unleashed by Galem to consume the fighters. Master Hand later obstructs the player's path several times in The Light Realm and must be fought before reaching Galeem. He can then be fought twice in The Final Battle Realm, after which he and Crazy Hand create a giant rift. The player can then temporarily control Master Hand to defeat 50 false characters.
Master Hand appears in Kirby & The Amazing Mirror as a mini-boss. If Kirby inhales him, then he gains the Smash ability, which grants him some of his moveset from Melee (but altered slightly). Master Hand and Crazy Hand are also the bosses of the Candy Constellation stage. Finally, in Kirby Squeak Squad, an enemy that resembles Master Hand appears on some levels, but it is made up of black particles similar to Master Core.

Super Smash Bros.: released (Japan) on January 21, 1999/ (North America) on April 26,  1999/ (Europe) on November 19, 1999 on Nintendo 64/ (Japan) on January 20, 2009/ (PAL) on June 12, 2009/ (North America) on December 21, 2009 on Virtual Console
Super Smash Bros. Melee: released (Japan) on November 21, 2001/ (North America) on December 3, 2001/ (Europe) on May 24, 2002/ (Australia) on May 31, 2002 on Nintendo GameCube
Super Smash Bros. Brawl: released (Japan) on January 31, 2008/ (North America) on March 9, 2008/ (Australia) on June 26, 2008/ (Europe) on June 27, 2008 on Wii
Super Smash Bros. for Nintendo 3DS:  released (Japan) on September 13, 2014/ (North America/Europe) on October 3, 2014/ (Australia) on October 4, 2014 
Super Smash Bros. for Wii U: released (North America) on November 21, 2014/(Europe) on November 28, 2014/(Australia) on November 29, 2014/(Japan) on December 6, 2014
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate: released (World Wide) on December 7, 2018 on Nintendo Switch
Kirby & The Amazing Mirror: released (Japan) on April 15, 2004/(Europe) on July 2, 2004/(North America) on October 18, 2004/(Australia) in 2004 on the Game Boy Advance/(World Wide) on December 16, 2011 on the Nintendo 3DS Ambassador Program/(Japan) on April 3, 2014/(North America/Europe) on April 10, 2014 on Wii U Virtual Console
Kirby: Squeak Squad: released (Japan) on November 2, 2006/(North America) on December 4, 2006/(Australia) on March 1, 2007/(Europe) on June 22, 2007/(South Korea) on September 13, 2007 on Nintendo DS/(Europe) on June 25, 2015/(North America) on July 30, 2015/(Japan) on September 9, 2015 on Wii U Virtual Console

That's all on Master Hand but, as usual, if I've missed anything or made a mistake, or you have a suggestion as to who should win the next Video Game Character of the Month, then please don't hesitate to comment!

Goodbye for now, Harry


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