Spirit Mode often crosses over with titles not widely represented in Smash Bros, including the likes of Astral Chain or Resident Evil, but this new crossover conveys just how widely loved Cuphead has become.
How much do you like Cuphead?
Cuphead was added as a Mii Fighter costume for the Mii Gunner when Byleth was released in late January, but in the early hours of Wednesday, the official Nintendo of Europe announced a Valentine's Day event called "Ready? Wallop!" that features Cuphead characters. Specifically, spirits based on Cuphead, Mugman, The Devil, and King Dice will be added to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate while the event lasts from February 14 to 19.
According to Nintendo's official in-game post about the event, defeating these Cuphead spirts in battle will allow players to "earn more gold than usual." Limited time spirits like this are eventually added back in the game's ecosystem in future patches, so don't fret if you aren't able to play Super Smash Bros. Ultimate to get these spirits while this oddly romantic event is live.
Spirits are the new replacement for the trophies from previous Smash games, but these allow characters to make their appearance via official key art. Once spirits are obtained through the World of Light Story mode or Spirit Boards like this Cuphead one, they can also be applied to characters to give unique bonuses in battle. As Cuphead's spirits let players earn additional gold, they will be useful for those who play classic mode a lot or buy quite a bit from the shop.
The fact that Cuphead will be getting a Spirit Board in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is staggering when you consider the game's humble origins.
Cuphead spawned from two brothers with little game development experience but has since snowballed in popularity since its first public appearances. Microsoft's ID@Xbox initiative supported the game immensely, and it released to critical acclaim in September 2017. Cuphead has subsequently become a pop culture icon of sorts, making cameos in shows like Titans and NCIS: New Orleans. The game's even getting its own animated Netflix series.
Cuphead's expansion recently has been driven mostly by Nintendo. Though originally an Xbox One console exclusive, the game came to Nintendo Switch in early 2019. It's exciting to see Cuphead be represented in the game in this way, following what Shantae, Shovel Knight, and Undertale have done before it.
His Mii Gunner costume and Spirts indicate that Cuphead almost certainly won't be one of the new characters in Fighters Pass 2, though that was already unlikely as he's a low-profile indie character. Still, I would love to see more Cuphead costumes make their way into Super Smash Bros. Ultimate in some fashion.
Cuphead has still yet to make its way to PlayStation 4 and Google Stadia, and I'd love nothing more than to see Studio MDHR create Cuphead 2.
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate and Cuphead are both available for Nintendo Switch.