Smash Run is a game mode exclusively for Super Smash Bros for the 3DS consisting of a 5 minute round followed by a 1 minute match. In this mode, 1-4 players compete on a unique map using items they may have acquired through Smash Run and possibly other game modes as well. Players begin by selecting their character, as well as selecting any items in their inventory they wish to bring with them. Some items are unique to Smash Run, such as a giant laser, or dual tornadoes. Larger characters can carry more items with them than a smaller character.
Once the match begins, each character shares a single map. This map is very large and there is only the one; However the enemies that spawn on the map are different each time. There are a variety of enemies in this mode from across the Nintendo universe and beyond. Defeating enemies, opening chests and discovering the right area will yield attribute increases. These include a green boot for speed, a yellow wing for jumping, an orange glove for power, a red flare for special attack, a purple hammer for weapons and projectiles, and lastly a blue shield for defense. The larger the icon, the more it will increase that attribute. Conversely, being damaged or KO’d will cause the player to lose some of those boosts.
There are also a plethora of other items to collect including bronze, silver and gold trophies. There are even item bags whose contents remain a mystery until after the 5 minute round ends. These bags can include Smash Run items, or even customizable moves for characters to use outside of Smash Run! Occasionally you may stumble across an event or challenge door.
An event is a temporary period of a randomized occurrence, ranging from barrages of bullet bills, to increased attribute icon drops, to boss battles. These events only take place in 1 area and for a timed duration, so be sure to monitor these as you may want to pursue or avoid certain ones. Challenge doors resemble the red double doors from Sub Space Emissary in SSB Brawl. Onside inside the player will be forced to complete a challenge such as destroying crystals or targets within a time limit. If the player succeeds, he or she would receive more attribute increases than if they were to fail. But note, the 5 minute timer does not stop while you are inside a challenge room.After the 5 minute round has ended, all of the stat boosts for all characters are calculated. You will be able to see how your competitors did, giving you an idea of what you are up against. For example, if Bowser was to collect a lot of attack increases, he might be able to KO in a single hit. Or if he were to collect a lot of speed boosts, an otherwise slow Bowser may move faster than Sonic!
Finally, the players proceed to a 1 minute timed match. This is randomized and can be anything from an HP battle, to a race, or any number of other possibilities, many of which have yet to be uncovered! At the end of the match characters receive coins based on their performance and are then free to play Smash Run again or change to a different mode.