And after completing it, which took me around 16 hours, I can safely say this; World of Light is one of the most pathetic, repetitive, unfun, unfair, worthless, padded out, masturbatory modes I have EVER played. THIS is how to you do EVERYTHING wrong in a so called 'adventure mode'. Where the hell to do I even begin with this shit?
World of Light is a total joke. Whereas other fighting games are trying their best these days to have engaging stories connected by fights, this mode tries to have a 'plot' that is totally worthless, because Nintendo does not know how to write a story to save their sorry ass. The plot is 'Bad guys kidnap spirits, go beat them up'. That's it. That's your story. It is no more than a very lame excuse to give the spirits their justification for existing. Not to mention, the very few cutscenes that are here feature horrendous English voice acting. People apparently get paid for doing this kind of stuff, I find that hilarious and sad.
How do you progress through this 'story'? You fight spirits. Over and over and over and over and over and over and over AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AND OVER AGAIN. I swear, this is one of the most REPETITIVE modes I have ever experienced, and I love the Dynasty Warriors games, so that says a lot. This mode is just fight after fight, each ranging from the piss easy Novice and Advanced spirits to the total bullshit Ace and extreme total bullshit Legend spirits. Many of these fights try their hardest to highly reference the game or spirit in question, but this quickly loses its charm as most of these fights are still not very interesting or challenging in a GOOD way. The Legend fights are some of the cheapest shit you will EVER face. I was having immense trouble with them despite my skill level and despite having obtained tons of spirits from the Spirit Board before even starting this mode. Most of these fights are insanely cheap and require equally cheap tactics or cheap spirit setups to overcome. When a Legend fight isn't infuriating you, even less difficult fights can be ungodly annoying. Whether it be Nintendo using the whole 'The fighter is a total pussy and runs away all the time while you have a small time limit' for the 10 millionth time or high winds blowing you around, many of these things don't make the fights anymore fun, it is just annoying. All of this you have to put up with just to get spirits, which while it can be cool to get spirits related to games you love, it is all fleeting references and nothing more. Many spirits do the same thing over and over again, so getting them feels worthless after a while, especially when the Legends are far more powerful once you get them.
I'm sure some of you remember the awesome adventure mode in Smash Bros. Melee, where it was an actual platforming game with fighting mixed in. THAT was fun! It was something different, used the game's mechanics in fun ways, wasn't extremely unfair and it was short and sweet. NOTHING like that is in World of Light. Nothing even comes close to being as unique as that mode in Melee. To top of all this off, unlike Melee's adventure mode, World of Light is WAY TOO FUCKING LONG. As I said at the start, this mode took me 16 hours to complete. Take that in. Imagine doing nothing but random spirit fights, many with annoying stipulations or unfair difficulty, for 16 hours. Does that sound like it would get old after a while? It gets old after maybe 2 hours. There is nothing here to mix things up and provide something different. The only attempts are the aforementioned constant gimmick battles that are just that, only gimmicks. The only other attempt isn't even in the fighting but rather traversing the map, which is kinda pointless because traversing the map as is isn't interesting no matter how you do it. They try to add little puzzles later on as even more references to other games, but again, it just interesting. It isn't gameplay. This is from Nintendo, the same company that has been able to keep Mario and Zelda relatively fresh and exciting for over 30 years. None of that pedigree is on display in World of Light.
That's all there is here. There is nothing else to do in World of Light. It is just constant gimmick battles for 16 hours, then like 3 different boss rushes near the end, you fight the two big bads at the same time and you get one last cutscene with that cheesy as fuck theme song. What the hell is it with Nintendo and these cringey songs? First Mario Odyssey had its terrible song with awful lyrics, and then we get this one, which has good instrumentation but the vocals kill it. I acknowledge that is mainly me nitpicking there, but when you spend 16 hours on a mode as unfun as this, waiting for it to be good or somewhat entertaining and your end reward is that shitty song, even that is a strike against the game.
If World of Light was all that Smash Ultimate had, I would give it a 2/10. It doesn't matter how good your base mechanics are. If they are not used in fun ways, then it can become boring and Nintendo most certainly spoiled this game for me with WOL. I don't know how much more of the game I want to play now. There isn't a whole lot else to do, clearly all the effort went into this terrible mode and the garbage spirit system. The online is absolute garbage so that doesn't add anything to the game. There are not enough ways to mix up the gameplay itself in regular Smash, so I might be taking a LOOOOOOOOOOOONG break from Ultimate.
I really do not understand how this game has such high ratings in the reviews. Having over 90 on Metacritic, this game doesn't seem to deserve that to me. While other game companies are trying so hard to provide interesting stories and mechanics that actually manage to be LONGER than World of Light, Nintendo creates one basic premise and instead has that be the entirety of this mode, while also providing not a single shred of good storytelling or interesting yet still fun battles. All of that on top of the awful online component, how in the world does this game have over 90 on Metacritic? It shouldn't, not in this state.
Don't get me wrong here, I do really enjoy Smash Bros. and this game definitely has a lot of high points going for it. The character roster is massive, the amount of stages are incredible and the core fighting IS fun for sure, just not when you are doing boring fight after boring fight for 16 friggin' hours.
That's all I have to say. Fuck World of Light. It is a giant stain on what is otherwise a decent game.