Smash Bros’ Sakurai explains why Captain Falcon doesn’t use his gun

Scott Baird
Captain Falcon saluting Smash Bros

Sakurai, the creator of the Super Smash Bros. series, has explained why Captain Falcon from F-Zero doesn’t use his sidearm despite carrying one on his character model.

The Super Smash Bros. series has a lot of scope for ranged fighters, which is in contrast to other fighting games, which limit the ranged options to prevent the competitive scenes from becoming highly defensive (and boring), as people will just spam fireballs all day if they could.

The stages in the Super Smash Bros. games are huge, and the characters have many vertical movement options. This agility, coupled with the powerful shield & parry option, means that anyone sitting back and shooting ranged attacks is asking to be rushed down and punished.

Not all Super Smash Bros. characters have a ranged option. The strangest example is Captain Falcon, a melee fighter with a range of powerful punches and kicks, yet he has no projectile attacks despite carrying a gun in a holster.

Why Captain Falcon doesn’t use his gun in Smash

In a new video on Masahiro Sakurai on Creating Games YouTube channel, the creator of Super Smash Bros. discussed the challenges of adapting licensed properties into video games. He even compared Super Smash Bros. to a licensed game since it uses familiar characters.

According to Sakurai, the easiest characters to create moves for in the Super Smash Bros. series were Fox and Captain Falcon because they’re rarely seen outside their vehicles in their home series and, as such, don’t have established fighting styles.

Sakurai used this reasoning to explain why Captain Falcon doesn’t use the gun that he carries on his character model, as he’s rarely seen brandishing it in his games.

“If Captain Falcon had more heavily used his sidearm in his own game,” Sakurai explained, “he may have ended up more of a ranged fighter and we’d never have gotten the decisive Falcon Punch.”

If Captain Falcon had used his gun in the F-Zero games, then he could have been a much different character than how he operates in the Super Smash Bros. series. Those who long for a gun-toting Captain Falcon can still have that, as plenty of firearms are available when items are switched on.

Characters can evolve over time in the Super Smash Bros. series, such as Link using his remote bombs from Breath of the Wild in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. If F-Zero ever returns and features Captain Falcon popping caps, then he might get some new moves in his fighting game form.