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- Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle
The saga of the upcoming Switch title Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle has been a rather odd one, bucking the traditional flow of how Nintendo games tend to make themselves known. That said, it does fall a bit closer in line with Ubisoft's recent woes: leaks, leaks, and more leaks. The game was vaguely hinted at by Laura Kate Dale ahead of the Switch's release, then subsequently confirmed via box art in late May of this year.
Regardless of rocky unveilings, a new development has hit the ever-interesting Mario + Rabbids rumor mill: amiibo. At least, according to a purportedly leaked image portraying Ubisoft's freakish Rabbids donning all sorts of familiar Mario-themed costumes. The image comes via a Spanish-language website dedicated entirely to amiibo - you can check it out below.
Beyond the image there's no official verification that these amiibo exist, but unless it's an impressive forgery, the amiibo portrayed do appear genuine. Additionally, with Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle all but confirmed (with an official unveiling expected at E3 2017 next week), the notion of amiibo support makes perfect sense from a business perspective. It's easy to forget, but the relationship between Nintendo and Ubisoft's Rabbids is a strong one. The Wii, sporting an innovative new motion-wand back in 2006, launched with the original Rayman Raving Rabbids available for purchase from day one.
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is expected to launch in August or September of this year, though we'll need to wait until E3 for official word from either company. Reports thus far indicate an interesting gameplay blend, featuring approximately 35% exploration elements and 65% turn-based combat. It's not my job to ensure that such percentages work well in a universe where Mario and Rabbids coexist (shudder), but I do look forward to finding out more. Expect to learn more via closer look (or maybe even hands-on) coming out of E3 next week.