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Filed under: Guest Article, Speculation, Super Smash Bros. Series

Guest Article: Dream Smasher: Frank West

This article was created by our guest writer zoniken, you can find him at his pixiv.

Dead Rising is a zombie survival horror beat ‘em up game created by Capcom, which can be called the combination of Capcom’s famous Resident Evil and Final Fight. It has already been eleven years since its first release for the Xbox 360 in 2006, and Capcom has released its fourth instalment Dead Rising 4 for the Xbox One and PC in December 2016. Although the fourth game wasn’t well received due to fan criticism, the series is still known to be the most popular zombie killing game since its debut, selling over 8.6 million units worldwide. Since the series does has its rights to be celebrated for its ten years of success, I would like to make a Dream series article of the Dead Rising series, starting from the Dream Smasher of whom from Dead Rising series should join Super Smash Bros. Let me introduce the one and only Dead Rising hero, who is the legendary zombie killer, and the kick-ass photojournalist. His name is Frank West!

 

Who is Frank West?

Frank West is the main protagonist from Dead Rising, released in 2006 for Xbox 360. Normally occupied as a freelance photojournalist, he has sent himself to the fictional town of Willamette, Colorado, to investigate the cause of the town riot. However, once he arrived at Willamette’s largest shopping center, Willamette Parkview Mall, he have realized that the whole town was infested with zombies, which he decided to cover the mysteries of the zombie outbreak, while saving human survivors and killing deadly psychopaths. Joining hands with the reformed terrorist member, Isabela Keyes, he managed to escape from the zombie infested town, and spread the outbreak news throughout the world; but his action cost his condition to be infected by the zombie virus, resulting him to take the anti-zombification medicine Zombrex for the rest of his life.

In Dead Rising 2, he made his return in the DLC mission “Case West”, assisting the main protagonist of the second game, Chuck Greene, to evade the pharmedic corporation Phenotrans to cover up the truth behind the zombie outbreak incident in Fortune City. But in Dead Rising 2: Off the Record, Frank West “gets back in the game”, replacing the protagonist role with Chuck. In this non-canon world of “what if Frank was in Fortune City to solve the case?”, Frank became a famous celebrity after escaping from Willamette and revealed the incident worldwide. But due to one scandal report, his fame has dropped down and lost everything instantly, even his own TV show. In order to “get back in the game”, he decided to join the zombie killing entertainment show “Terror is Reality” as a special contestant, but gets involved in another zombie incident in Fortune City, which he once again pulls out his favorite camera to cover the case.

Although he didn’t make his return in Dead Rising 3, except for being a playable character for the DLC mini-game of Super Ultra Dead Rising 3’ Arcade Remix Hyper Edition EX+α, he once again returned as the main protagonist for Dead Rising 4. Retired as a photojournalist because of the government mistreated his heroism, he now works as a photography majored professor at some college. However, after the ZDC agent Brad Park convinced Frank to help him solve the mystery of another zombie outbreak in Willamette, and in search of Frank’s reckless student Vick Chu, he decided to “get back in the game” to solve another outbreak mystery, and to win his heroic role back.

Frank is a rough, tough, gritty character with a strong attitude, who can be sarcastic at most times, but he is genuinely kind and decent, who can also make himself being a lady killer instead. Although he’s very aware with his surroundings, even towards his enemies who are mostly psychopaths, he mostly seeks for an adventurous and dangerous field for a big scoop, and strong enough to learn wrestling techniques and weaponry in order to survive the big fight. Hey, he covered wars y’know?

He even has a perfect résumé of joining the Fantastic Four to defeat the Marvel Zombies.

 

Importance of Gaming History

As explained in the beginning, the series have sold over 8.6 million units worldwide, mostly for the Xbox consoles. Among the entire series, the first Dead Rising have sold over 2 million units globally, and although the game wasn’t sold much in Japan, the game was popular in the West, which sold over 1.16 million units. The game also won the 2006 VGX Awards for the Best Action Game, winning over its nominees New Super Mario Bros. and Okami. It even won a global award for the 2007 Japan Game Award. Due to its popularity, its movie Dead Rising: Watchtower was released in 2015, while its sequel Dead Rising: Endgame was released in 2016, which both received poorly though.

For Frank West, he’s extremely popular toward fans mostly in the West. Frank was in many lists of popularity throughout every game review teams, such as ranking in 22nd place for greatest Xbox character by The Age, 17th place for the best Capcom character by GameDaily, and 48th place for 50 best game characters of the generation by GamesRadar. Although he wasn’t listed in the higher ranks, he was well mentioned as memorable with the positive ratings. Game Informer even listed him in “Ten Faces We Won’t Soon Forget”, and IGN included him in their “Ultimate Zombie Strike Team”.

Now people may deny this topic saying “Frank is Xbox exclusive, there’s no way he’ll join Smash!” But this is the misunderstanding. Although Cloud’s entry in Smash for 3DS/WiiU has broken the fan rule of third parties must have a history with Nintendo, which Sakurai even stated that third parties being in the Nintendo platform before isn’t the requirement but a courtesy, Dead Rising is actually a multi-platformed game. In other words, Frank does have his history with Nintendo. The first Dead Rising game has once ported to Wii in February 2009 as Dead Rising: Chop Till You Drop, which was the first time when the series has reached to Nintendo’s platform, though it received poorly due to its ESRB’s lowered ratings. Other than that, Frank also made his crossover appearances as the newly added Capcom fighter for Tatsunoko VS Capcom: Ultimate All Stars alongside with Mega Man X’s Zero, and Project X Zone with Darkstalker’s Hsien-Ko as his partner, which both games are Nintendo exclusives. On the outside of Nintendo, he also appeared as the unlockable player skin in Lost Planet: Extreme Condition and Lost Planet 2, and a newly added Capcom fighter for Ultimate Marvel VS Capcom 3, alongside with his return in Marvel VS Capcom Infinite. His name was also referenced in the non-Capcom related game Left 4 Dead 2: The Passing.

Not that he appeared directly in Left 4 Dead 2,

but this was his first time referenced in a non-Capcom game.

 

Colors & Design

       
1P 2P 3P 4P
       
5P 6P 7P 8P

In Smash, several characters hold their own alternate costumes, such as Wario wearing his biker outfit from WarioWare and his original overall outfit, Cloud in his original Soldier outfit and Advent Children’s outfit, and Bayonetta in her Bayonetta 2 and Bayonetta 1 outfit. For Frank’s case, he’ll be wearing two different outfits; 1P to 4P will be his iconic black jacket from the first Dead Rising game, while 5P to 8P will be his green jacket from Dead Rising 4. His 2P color will represent Dead Rising 2’s main protagonist Chuck Greene’s color, resembling his jacket being yellow and undershirt being black, and his hair being blonde. His 3P color will represent Dead Rising 3’s main protagonist Nick Ramos, resembling his jacket blue and undershirt red. His 6P color will represent Dead Rising 4’s heroine Vick Chu, resembling his jacket gray and pants black. His 7P color will represent the first Dead Rising’s heroine Isabela Keyes, resembling his jacket white and undershirt red, and his skin being slightly dark.

If you’ve noticed that I’ve skipped 5P color, then this will be the special one along with the 8P color. Similar to how both Link and Toon Link have their Shadow versions in Smash, both Frank’s 5P and 8P color will represent the zombies, as both articles of clothing will become darker and skin grayish blue, while 5P’s eyes will be glowing red and 8P’s eyes will glow green. The 8P zombie color represents Zombie Frank from the DLC of Dead Rising 4.

 

How Will Frank West Play?

Frank is known to carry many weapons in his inventory, which means he’s a heavyweight brawler. His speed and jump height is similar to Link’s, while his power is the average of Ryu’s. For his movesets, he’ll mostly be using various weapons from the actual game, including the Combo Weapons. However, since real-life firearms can’t be used in Smash (please don’t bring up Bayonetta’s case again, it’s getting old), we won’t allow Frank to carry them in his inventory. Plus his voice should be performed by T.J. Rotolo, while strong languages should be prohibited due to Smash’s ESRB ratings.

  • Can he crawl: Yes
  • Can he wall jump: No
  • How many jumps does he has: 2
  • Is there any exclusive abilities he has*: No
  • Weight Class: B
  • Height Class: C+
  • Speed Class: D+
  • Is he mirrored when he faces left: Yes

*i.e. Peach’s Float

(for a more detailed look at the stats check this link here)

Icon

Originally taken from the Dead Rising title, where a silhouette of a zombie displayed in the letter D.

Kirby’s Hat

Not just only Kirby will be wearing a wig of Frank’s hair, but with the addition of shaved facial hair marks on Kirby’s face.

Entrance

A helicopter will fly through, and Frank jumps off and roll to the ground for safe landing while saying “Time to get some scoop!” or “Frank West has joined the game!”

Idle Stance

Frank will be using his left hand to hold the camera, while he’ll use his right hand whenever he’s holding an item. This will be mirrored when he’s turning to the left side.

Idle Pose 1

He’ll look onto his watch to check out the time.

Idle Pose 2

He’ll stretch while holding his back with his left hand.

Walking He’ll walk while holding the camera safely.
Running He’ll run while holding the camera safely.
Jumping He’ll jump while holding the camera safely.
Crouching He’ll crouch down while holding the camera safely.
Guarding

He’ll face his shoulder forward for guarding as he’s protecting his camera.

Front & Back Roll:

Flying Dodge

He’ll dive forward or backwards and roll to dodge attacks.

Jab:

Jab, Straight, Kick Back

Frank will pull out a jab from his left, then straight from the right, and finally kick up for the last attack.
Dash Attack:

Football Tackle

Frank will tackle his opponent in a football style.

Forward Tilt:

Roundhouse Kick

Frank will turn and pull out a powerful kick.

Up Tilt:

Somersault Kick

Frank will flip and kick up his opponent upwards.

Down Tilt:

Leg Sweep

Frank will sweep his opponent with his leg while crouching.

Forward Smash:

Small Chainsaw

Frank will pull out a small chainsaw to attack. However, he can also swing upwards as a second attack if you pressed the button twice.

Up Smash:

Sledgesaw

Frank will pull out a Combo Weapon “Sledgesaw” to perform a full swing to attack opponents upwards.

Down Smash:

Electric Crusher

Frank will pull out a Combo Weapon “Electric Crusher” to pound the ground, creating two electrical pillars to blow opponents away from both sides, containing a powerful shock effect.

Neutral Aerial:

Jump Kick

Frank will kick upwards while jumping in the air.

Forward Aerial:

Sledgehammer

Frank will pull out a sledgehammer to fully swing downwards, which contains a meteor and shield-breaker effect.

Backward Aerial:

Pole Weapon

Frank will pull out a Combo Weapon “Pole Weapon” to swing at his opponent from behind in air.

Up Aerial:

Electric Prod

Frank will pull out an electric prod to stun his opponent above.

Down Aerial:

Knee Drop

Frank will turn his knee down and dive to attack his opponent from the bottom, which contains stall-then-fall effect and meteor smash.

Grab & Pummel:

Burning Fry Pan

Once Frank grabs his opponent, he’ll pull out a burning fry pan and place it on his opponent to continuously damage them with its burning effect.

Forward Throw:

Homerun Bat

Frank will pull out the bat and swing hard to blow his opponent away.

Back Throw:

Giant Swing

Frank will swing his opponent around by grabbing their legs and throws away after three turns, similar to Mario’s Giant Swing.

Up Throw:

Lift Up

Frank will lift up his opponent, spin around and throw it upwards, similar to the throwing animation he used in his “Dead Rising” Hyper Combo from Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars.

Down Throw:

Face Crusher

Frank will grab his opponent’s head and plants its face into the ground. This move also allows Frank to move back a little.

Neutral Special:

Item Throw

He’ll throw three different items (in the order of a fire extinguisher, toy laser sword, and dumbbell) towards his opponent, containing various effects once hit. However, the item can be used by others if they catch it.

Custom Neutral 1:

Hail Mary

Frank will pull out a Combo Weapon “Hail Mary”, and throw it straight to his opponent. But unlike the original neutral special, he won’t immediately throw it to his opponent as he’ll hold it, similar to Link and Toon Link’s Bomb attack, and Snake’s Hand Grenade attack from Brawl. It will detonate within three seconds once performed, and it will be suicidal if kept held, but it can be captured and thrown back by others.

Custom Neutral 2:

Bowling Strike

Frank will pull out a bowling ball and simply roll it on the ground to attack his opponents. The item is heavy weighted and can be easily avoided by jumping over it, but contains a large amount of damage. This cannot be picked up by other players.

Side Special:

Shopping Spree

Frank will pull out a shopping cart to attack his opponent by rushing towards them. Holding the button will keep Frank running, and releasing the button can stop Frank from running and release the item as it’ll continue running forward until it hits the opponent or the wall.

Custom Side 1:

Weapon Cart

Frank will pull out the Combo Weapon “Weapon Cart” to ram his opponents, containing a larger damage than its original. However, due to being equipped with sharp weapons, its speed is slower due to its weight.

Custom Side 2:

Bomber Cart

Frank will pull out the shopping cart to ram his opponents, but this time adding a propane tank taped with dynamites, which will explode in three seconds once it’s activated. This move can be self-destructive if not careful, as it can be easily exploded if it hits a projectile.
Up Special:

Cryo Pod

Frank will be riding in the Combo Weapon “Cryo Pod”, which will blast cold pressure from the fire extinguishers to float in the air. The pressure contains freezing effect, which can freeze opponents if touched. The flight lasts five seconds, which will explode in the air with a large damage and freezing effect. This can be self-destructive to Frank as he can get damaged and frozen by its explosion, but can easily escape by pressing any button, while the pod flies on its own until it explodes.

Custom Up 1:

Pyro Pod

Instead of cold pressures, it’ll blast fire from the fire extinguishers. The explosion contains heavy damage than the original, but can only last three seconds in flight.
Custom Up 2:

Dragon Punch

Frank will pull out a Combo Weapon “Dragon Punch” to perform a jumping uppercut, similar to Ryu’s Shoryuken. While it can hit his opponent in the air, it lacks reach as it doesn’t jump higher than Ryu’s.

Down Special:

Double Lariat

Frank will start spinning around with his arms wide open, performing the double lariat, attack nearby opponents from both sides. Rapidly pressing the B button will allow Frank to spin continuously, but will become dizzy if performed for five seconds.

Custom Down 1:

Spinning Hammer

Frank will pull out a sledgehammer and start spinning while attacking nearby opponents from both sides. Contains large damage and a shield-breaker effect, but lacks speed.

Custom Down 2:

Cyclone Lariat

It is the same as its original attack, but this time he can move sideways freely while containing multiple attacks. Similar to Mario’s Mario Tornado and Luigi’s Luigi Cyclone, but the damage is weaker.
Final Smash:

Like a Mega Man

Once Frank breaks the Smash Ball, he’ll change into his Mega Man costume, and uses the Real Mega Buster to blast a large laser straight ahead, giving continuous damages and a final blow in the end. This move is based on Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars and similar to Samus’s Zero Laser, but it cannot change angles.

Up Taunt

Frank will pull out a jug of orange juice or milk and drinks it all with a relief. Although this heals his health in the actual games, this doesn’t recover his damage percentage in Smash.

Side Taunt

Frank will pull out his camera and take a picture. Afterwards, he’ll make a thumbs up and says his famous phrase “Fan-tastic!”

Down Taunt

Frank will pull out an apple or hamburger and eats it with a relief. Although this heals his health in the actual games, this doesn’t recover his damage percentage in Smash.

Victory Pose 1

Frank will pull out his camera and takes a selfie as he says “I’m getting outta here!”, similar victory pose and a phrase he used in Tatsunoko vs. Capcom: Ultimate All-Stars

Victory Pose 2

Frank will be taking pictures from left, right, and front, then makes a thumbs up with satisfaction while saying his famous phrase, “Hey, I’ve covered wars y’know?”

Victory Pose 3 As Frank wrestles with a zombie, he’ll throw it down to the ground, stomping on it in order to prevent the zombie from waking up, and making a victory sign with a satisfied face, while saying “Can’t die ‘til I get my scoop!”

Something like this for example.

Losing Animation Rather than applauding to the winner, he takes pictures of them.
Crowd Cheer Male spectators will be cheering out by shouting “HIS NAME’S FRANK!”, while the other shouts out in a low tone “WEEEEEST!!!” afterwards. This is referenced from the lyrics “His Name’s Frank” from Dead Rising 2: Off the Record.
Victory Fanfare

Frank’s victory fanfare will be the music that’s been used in Dead Rising 2: Off the Record’s trailer, located around 1:20.

So that’s quite it so far for Frank’s Dream Smasher article! Ever since the release of the first Dead Rising, Frank has really become a famous character among many zombie horror game fans in the West. Just like Ryu, who’s the king of crossovers, Frank has been in many crossovers inside and outside of Capcom games. It’ll be an interesting moment if Frank joins Smash, as his movements and item choices fit perfectly, as also making himself being more unique for using various items as weapons of survival, and leveling through fighting and photographing. However, we don’t know if there will be more Capcom characters to join Smash other than Mega Man and Ryu, since we don’t know the limit of how many characters per third party company are allowed. But even then, it wouldn’t be wrong to dream about it, even if I want to celebrate his (belated) ten years of zombie brawling progress.

I really thank you for reading this Dream Smasher article so far, but the fun is still not over yet! Because soon we’ll be moving on to the next stage of the Dead Rising based Dream series…his Dream Arena article! So see you again soon!

3 comments
  1. cool! could you do a dream smash of Selvaria Bes from Valkyria chronicles?

    David Horan on May 5 |
  2. It works so well that it’s a bit uncanny.

    DeeperThanRed on May 5 |
  3. Thank you for helping me with editing and posting NantenJex!

    @David Horan
    I don’t know anything about Valkyria Chronicles, so I would have to leave that up to someone else instead. You could try making one if possible!

    @DeeperThanRed
    I was thinking of adding a Level System mechanic like they used in the actual game and Marvel vs Capcom series, but decided not to because it may not work due to technical issues, since the mechanic in Marvel vs Capcom series were too different from Smash’s. Worked really hard on the movesets with weapon choices though.

    But as written in the article, this isn’t over with Dead Rising based Dream articles, as I’ve also created its Dream Arena and Items! Stay tuned!

    zoniken on May 5 |