We found a trick that unlocks every character in ‘Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’ in just a few hours. Here’s how to get your favorites as fast as possible.

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The “Challenger Approaching” screen in “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” lets you know who you can unlock next.
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“Super Smash Bros. Ultimate”/Nintendo

  • “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” has the biggest roster of any “Smash” game ever, with 74 characters in total.
  • Just eight characters are unlocked when you start the game, and unlocking the other 66 can take hours of playtime.
  • While players haven’t yet figured out all of the methods to unlock the characters, there are a few tricks to help you unlock multiple fighters in a matter of minutes.

Unlocking every character in “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” will be the largest task facing new players picking up the new Nintendo Switch game.

Luckily, dedicated players have already figured out some early tricks that make unlocking the full 74-character cast much less time-consuming.

Unlocking characters the usual way

As in past games, characters can be unlocked in a variety of ways across the game’s many modes.

During gameplay, players will occasionally be faced with a “Challenger Approaching” screen carrying the silhouette of the next unlockable character. If the player can beat the challenger in a match, the character is unlocked and added to the roster.

If you beat a new challenger, you unlock them for good.

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If you beat a new challenger, you unlock them for good.
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“Super Smash Bros. Ultimate”/Nintendo

Normally, new challengers approach about every 10 minutes during multiplayer “Smash” or after you complete a specific game mode, like the arcade-style Classic Mode.

When playing the World of Light adventure mode, you regularly encounter new unlockable characters, too.

The timer trick for more new challengers

Players have also found that you can frequently reset the timer for character unlocks by changing the language, going back to versus mode, and playing a single multiplayer “Smash” match.

Changing the language closes the software and resets the game – and, apparently, the “Challenger Approaching” timer, too. Some players who received the game before its launch date reported that resetting the game from the main menu also resets the timer, though the language change seems to be quicker and a bit more consistent after the game’s 1.1.0 update on launch.

Repeating this trick will get you a new challenger after just about every “Smash” match, so long as you’re changing the language after each game.

The trick does seem to require a bit of extra playtime before it starts working, so I’d recommend playing through Classic Mode once or twice before changing the language to reset the game.

Rematching past challengers

If you happen to lose to a challenger and fail to unlock new characters, they will eventually return for another match. You can rematch challengers via the “Challenger’s Approach” option in the Games & More section of the menu. The menu option will disappear if you lose again or have no past challengers to rematch.

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The “Challenger’s Approach” option will appear occasionally to let you rematch unlockable characters.
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“Super Smash Bros. Ultimate”/Nintendo

With 66 challengers to beat, unlocking the full roster of “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” will always take hours’ worth of playtime, even with the language-reset trick. But the trick can help get the process done in one dedicated afternoon, rather than over the course of a few days.

If the language trick stops working, try playing a round or two of Classic Mode, which can also lead to new challengers.

More ways to unlock characters quickly

Dedicated players in the “Smash” community have also contributed to a Google document that lists the order that characters are unlocked in “Smash,” in both Classic Mode and World of Light.

If you’re looking to unlock your favorite character as quickly as possible, be sure to check this list to find the most direct route.

Past “Smash for Wii U” Evolution champion Tempo Zero uploaded his own video describing the unlocking process in detail and explaining how to reset the game for more new challengers.

Regardless of what method you use, unlocking every character in “Super Smash Bros. Ultimate” will be a long journey. It’s probably best not to get too caught up in how fast you’re unlocking characters and make sure you’re having fun while it’s happening.

But, it also helps to know a few tricks to get it done faster and start playing your favorite characters against your friends.