Arms Unveils New Characters, Modes, a Global Testpunch, and More in Latest Nintendo Direct

Ahead of its June 16th release date, Nintendo crams as much new info as they can for the new IP within a single Nintendo Direct.

News by Caty McCarthy, .

Modes! Characters! A Global Testpunch! Just a few weeks away from release, Nintendo at last revealed more details for the upcoming Switch title Arms in a Nintendo Direct.

Nintendo showed off the new fighters joining the already seven-strong roster. First, there's Kid Cobra, a hover board wheeling fellow with a mask. There's Twintelle, a movie star from France that doesn’t fight with her arms at all, but her hair (kinda like Filia from Skullgirls). Last but not least, Arms introduced a clunky blue robot with a dog-like companion, adequately named Byte and Barq. With these new fighters, Arms is shaping up to be a fuller fighting game after all.

Nintendo detailed the modes that are in Arms, in addition to its standard one-on-one fight. Included is a two-versus-two mode, which looks just as chaotic as one would assume, as players are tethered together as they fight two foes. A player can punch their way through targets in the Arm Getter to garner additional arms. As anticipated, players will also be able to party up online with a lobby of up to 20 players (that’s approximately 10 systems with two players each) at a time. Players that join the same lobby will be matched up accordingly.

There’s also a few additional nontraditional modes in Arms, in addition to the plain ol' 3D arena fights. Like SkillShot, a mode where instead of focusing on punching each other, players focus on hitting bullseye-marked targets and accumulating points. V-Ball has players hitting an explosive ball back and forth over a hoop, like volleyball (except, y’know, with an exploding ball). Hoops has two players, one on one as usual, doing their very best Steph Curry impersonations by grabbing one another and dunking them into a literal basketball hoop. 1v.100 Where a player is positioned on the court determines the amount of points they score. For the competitive crowd, Arms has its very own Grand Prix, where players vow to fight ten opponents in a row to become a “champ,” as well as a ranked mode, where your rank is dependent on performance.

The arms themselves in Arms were also outlined in fine detail. The gloves are interchangeable, as mentioned in the last Nintendo Direct. The switchable arms adds a layer to depth and customization in addition to the builds of each character, as some arms wield parasols (like Twintelle’s specific gloves), and others may fire a laser beam. Arms encourages players to mix and match their arms to find what combination is best for them. The arms themselves are divided up into three class tiers: Light, Medium, and Heavy; in addition to their seven attributes: Fire, Electric, Wind, Ice, Stun, Explosion, and Blind, which all deal unique damage onto an opponent when charged up.

In addition, the last weekend of May (May 26th to 28th) and first weekend of June (June 2nd to 4th) will each host a Global Testpunch for Nintendo Switch systems, akin to the Global Testfires held for Splatoon. The Global Testpunch will operate as a demo of sorts for new players who haven’t gotten a chance to swing their virtual arms yet, and test out the servers for the multiplayer of the game.

Arms Hands-On Impressions: Armed, But Friendly

Arms connects with people who play it, but it'd work best as a pack-in game for the Nintendo Switch.

As Splatoon once did (and will do with its sequel), Arms will release additional content for free over the coming months. New fighters, stages, and, of course, arms will be eventually added to the game, spicing up the line-up. In the meantime, with a breadth of modes, ten fighters, and dozens upon dozens of interchangeable weaponized arms, the June 16th release doesn’t look too shabby either.

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Comments 3

  • Avatar for Tebunker #1 Tebunker A year ago
    This direct turned me in to an interested party. Not saying I am ready to buy, the test punch will be the proving grounds.

    But I watched that video with the wife and the 7 year old and they were way more interested in it than me. So that may be the ultimate decider.
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  • Avatar for damienolenick07 #2 damienolenick07 A year ago
    ARMS went from, "oh cool, a neat, short little fighter" to a full-fledged fighter with customizable characters, loot (new ARMS) and depth. well played Nintendo, might be a breakout hit for them.
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  • Avatar for brionfoulke91 #3 brionfoulke91 A year ago
    I can't wait to try it. Fighting games have been getting a bit stale for awhile now... we really needed something like this!
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