In a nutshell, Super Smash Bros. Brawl is a game for everyone. It has a sort of sweeping appeal that hits home for people of all ages. However, in its attempt to appeal to everyone, it leaves some of us with a bit of an empty space inside. It is somewhat like buying expensive chocolate and having to dole it out to so many of your friends and family, that you are left with a tiny piece. Delicious, but not quite satisfying.
The story of SSBB is just like every other story Nintendo gives us, i.e. more or less an afterthought. But where the Subspace Emissary story loses points, it gains points with the presentation. It is a rather simple, yet effective idea. You choose your characters after watching a fairly impressive video, and begin jumping and smashing across series' of platforms. The end of the platforming sequence usually culminates with some sort of boss. This is all well and good. The problems, however, arise between these platforming segments, also known as loading times. Now, I usually don't split hairs when it comes to loading times but SSBBs load times are particularly jarring. 10 seconds of a black screen is not exactly enjoyable. It may not seem like much but the frequency of the loads and the sudden cut-off from high action brawling gets to you after a while.
The characters of SSBB are astounding. It is not at all hard to find a character to like, and unlike Melee, most characters (Most, not all) are unique and not just a reskinned version of another character. I did encounter some character balancing issues, however. I have a friend who seems to think DeDeDe is God's gift to man, and I am beginning to feel that way too, because I can unload just about everything on that bloated whale carcass and recieve a hammer to the skull as a result. I also find it disturbing that the character who seems most capable in terms of power and speed and general ability for untold destruction is also one of the most annoying and ridiculous characters (Falcon PUNCH!).
The sound gets the job done and visually...oh who cares. If you own a Wii, you probably don't get a huge stiffie on HD graphics and plentiful gore like millions of gamers out there anyway. At any rate, visually it is fine. Not so good it makes your eyes bleed or so bad you want to gouge your eyes out to stop the pain. It is just fine.
Of course, like all too many games nowadays (Halo 3, I'm looking at you.), multiplayer is where SSBB really shines. With 3 friends, the battles are fast, frantic, and above all fun until one of the dicks decide to stick with DeDeDe. Online is an admirable effort as well, despite the lack of speech, names, and just about anything else that would make online play more streamlined.
All in all, SSBB is a good game. It doesn't break down walls in the least (apart from the console wall; read Snake and Sonic), but just like the chocolate, it will please many people but satisfy few. So, unless you are a hardcore casual gamer (wait, what?) who hates any game that has no real Wii functionality or minigames, you really have no reason not to pick up this game. You won't regret it in the least, but you might feel a bit hungry for more at the end of the day.