In previous Super Smash Bros. games, you could unlock a handful of characters quickly by creating a one stock game and repeatedly killing yourself. This was because fighters were unlocked through matches played before Super Smash Bros. Ultimate came about.
Now, however, Nintendo wants you to work to unlock every single character.
In Super Smash Bros. Ultimate, fighters are unlocked after a set amount of button presses have been made by a player-controlled character. If you just move around and jump, for example, you won’t unlock characters at all. So be prepared to get your fight on, for the most part.
If you want to unlock characters quickly, grab a few friends and do a two or three-minute match. After fighting your heart out, a character should be unlockable at the end.
Now this is where things get tricky. If you go back into a match right after unlocking the character, you won’t be able to get a fighter immediately following your next game. This is because Nintendo implemented a timer to stop you from unlocking multiple characters over a short period of time.
The way to get around this, though, is to close the game manually on the Switch home menu and reopen it. This resets the timer, and the next time you finish your two or three-minute game, another fighter will be preparing itself to be unlocked.
Repeat this process and you should have all of the characters unlocked in a few hours.
The slowest way to unlock the full roster, for those wondering, is the Adventure Mode, World of Light. Completing the mode fully could take up to 20 to 30 hours at a decent pace, and that’s just on the lowest difficulty. Some of the fighters are also well hidden in that mode, which makes it a nightmare to find them all.