Arms – Get ready to fight!
Arms is a fighting game developed and published by Nintendo for the Nintendo Switch, which released on June 16, 2017. The game differentiates itself from standard fighting games with its unconventional fighting system where every playable character fights with long-range attacks, and up to four players can choose a fighter and battle using a variety of extendable, customizable arms to knock out opponents in a three-dimensional arena. By July 2018, the game had sold over two million copies worldwide, making it one of the best-selling games on the Switch.
Arms is a 3D fighting sports game in which up to four players can control one of a variety of fighters, with the player able to perform basic fighting actions using extendable arms such as punching, throwing, blocking, and dodging. Arms feature fifteen playable fighters, with five of them being released as downloadable content. Each fighter starts with three unique Arms that can be selected in battle, but the use of all other fighters' Arms can be unlocked in the Get Arms mode.
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All fighters also have unique attributes in combat. When the attack meter is fully charged, players are able to unleash a high-damage "rush attack" against their opponents. Players can also charge their attacks to temporarily increase damage and utilize elemental effects. Each character has a different set of abilities and unique Arms for different strategies.
Players are able to use the system's Joy-Con motion controls or standard button inputs with controllers such as the Pro Controller to operate each Arm individually. Players are also able to customize their Arm load-outs, with each Arm being able to be selected independently. Every Arm is different from elemental attributes and varying weights that affect gameplay. Up to four players are able to play in a single match, either in a three or four-way free-for-all or in a two-on-two mode in which teammates are tethered together.
Besides the standard fighting mode, Arms features multiple other modes: Versus, Grand Prix, and a variety of Battle modes. In Grand Prix, players take on a set of 10 matches against computer-controlled fighters to win the championship belt. Battle mode consists of volleyball and basketball modes, a target braking mode, and a survival mode. Players can also play online in a party match lobby with up to 20 players, or in one-on-one ranked matches. Arms featured ten playable fighters at launch, with five additional fighters added via post-release updates.
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The game was announced at the Nintendo Switch Presentation on January 12, 2017, and was released worldwide on June 16, 2017. Prior to the game's release, a multiplayer demo known as the "Arms Global Testpunch" was made available for download on the Nintendo eShop, with players being able to test the online gameplay during twelve separate hour-long sessions. Irregular post-release updates were released featuring new playable characters, stages, and arms. These free releases of additional content followed Splatoon's update model, while the Testpunch demo was also available for use multiple times. The game received new characters and stages by way of downloadable content until December 2017, when Nintendo announced that they would no longer be adding new content to the game other than balance updates.
In May 2018, a demo of the game was released on the eShop for a limited time only. Unlike the Testpunch events, this demo only featured offline modes of single-player and local multiplayer with a limited selection of characters and Arms to choose from. In 2017, it was announced that Arms would receive a graphic novel produced by Dark Horse Comics, which is scheduled for release in 2019. Elements of the game, such as Spring Man and Ribbon Girl, appeared in the 2018 crossover fighting game Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.