Super Smash Bros. Brawl, known in Japan as Dairantō Smash Brothers X, often abbreviated as SSBB or simply as Brawl, is the third installment in the Super Smash Bros. series of crossover fighting games, developed by an ad hoc development team consisting of Sora, Game Arts and staff from other developers, and published by Nintendo for the Wii video game console. Brawl was announced at a pre-E3 2005 press conference by Nintendo president and Chief Executive Officer Satoru Iwata. Masahiro Sakurai, director of the previous two games in the series, assumed the role of director for the third installment at the request of Iwata. Game development began in October 2005 with a creative team that included members from several Nintendo and third party development teams. After delays due to development problems, the game was finally released on January 31, 2008 in Japan, March 9, 2008 in North America, June 26, 2008 in Australia and June 27, 2008 in Europe. Twenty-seven months after its original Japanese release, the game was released in Korea, on April 29, 2010.
The number of playable characters that players can control in Brawl has grown from that in Super Smash Bros. Melee; Brawl is the first game in the series to expand past Nintendo characters and allow players to control third-party characters. Like its predecessors, the object of Brawl is to knock an opponent off the screen. It is a departure from traditional fighting games, notably in its simplified move commands and emphasis on ring outs over knockouts. It includes a more extensive single-player mode than its predecessors, known as The Subspace Emissary (SSE). This mode is a plot-driven, side-scrolling beat 'em up featuring computer-generated cut scenes and playable characters from the game. Brawl also supports multiplayer battles with up to four combatants, and is the first game of its franchise to feature online battles via the Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection. The game can also be uniquely played on four controllers, which include the Classic Controller, GameCube Controller, Wii Remote and Nunchuk and Wii Remote, simultaneously.
Super Smash Bros. Brawl received critically positive reviews, with critics praising the game's entertainment value, despite issues relating to Brawl's loading times. The game's musical score, which was composed through a collaboration among 38 renowned video game composers, was lauded for its representation of different generations in gaming history. It received an aggregate review score of 93% on Metacritic and 92.75% on Game Rankings. Brawl was ranked "Fighting Game of the Year" of 2008 by the Academy of Interactive Arts & Sciences. As of March 2010, it is the eighth best-selling Wii game by selling a total of 9.48 million copies worldwide.