The inclusion of Persona 5‘s Joker in Super Smash Bros Ultimate was certainly something a lot of fans didn’t see coming. This latest iteration in the famed fighting game series features a slew of third-party characters like Snake, Cloud, Ryu, Mega Man, and Simon Belmont that all still feel a bit surreal to play as today. Suffice it to say, Ren Amamiya’s confirmed spot on the roster has opened the door to a variety of other gaming mascots. President and COO of Nintendo of America, Reggie Fils-Aime, did say at this year’s Game Awards that every new DLC fighter will be unexpected. Keeping this in mind, check out our predictions for what other third-party characters could be included in the title going forward.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Sora (Kingdom Hearts)
Now that Square Enix is on board with the Super Smash Bros series via Cloud Strife, it seems natural for it to include another one of its most recognizable mascots in the fray. Most notably, fans have been clamoring for Sora from the Kingdom Hearts franchise to receive a spot on Ultimate‘s roster. The timing makes sense, given that Kingdom Hearts III is releasing in January. This being said, Disney may want to restrict which characters appear in a competitor’s product. It may not feature the likes of Mickey, Donald, or Goofy, but fans of the series will most assuredly take what they can get.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Banjo and Kazooie
Banjo and Kazooie are two characters that Nintendo fans have wanted in Super Smash Bros for years. From early on in the franchise until Ultimate today, players have implored Microsoft to allow the pair a chance to fight alongside other classics like Mario, Pac-Man, and Sonic.
The idea was far-fetched back then, but is much more realizable today if Xbox’s Executive Vice President Phil Spencer has any say on the matter. This past March, Spencer reaffirmed that he’s willing to include both Banjo and Kazooie in Super Smash Bros. Whether or not Nintendo reached out to Microsoft and Rare remains to be seen, though it’s very possible that platformer fans could see two of their favorite mascots revitalized in 2019.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Crash Bandicoot
With the Crash Bandicoot N. Sane Trilogy now on Switch and Crash Team Racing: Nitro Fueled set for release on the platform in June, it seems natural that the titular marsupial will be featured as a playable fighter in Super Smash Bros Ultimate. While the mascot has traditionally been associated with PlayStation, the same can be said of Cloud from Final Fantasy VII.
Though Crash doesn’t have the same recognition worldwide as Mega Man or Ryu, he does have a significant following in the West if sales of the N. Sane Trilogy serve any indication. Activision may want the character to earn a spot on the game’s roster to promote its next remaster in the franchise. And if that happens, it’ll be a win for all parties involved.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Geno (Super Mario RPG)
Though Geno was in Nintendo’s Super Mario RPG, the title was co-developed with Squaresoft, the precursor to Square Enix. The legal rights to the character lie with the latter company, ushering him into third-party territory. As great as it is to don a Mii costume of the magician in Ultimate, Geno deserves to be a playable fighter now that Square and Nintendo have collaborated together on the franchise.
He can serve as a suitable alternative to Dragon Ball‘s Goku, with a variety of distance attacks available in his arsenal. Rocket-fists and finger-guns are definitely not beyond the realm of possibility, as is Geno’s signature Star Gun move that shoots a beam of stardust at opponents. Like the Duck Hunt dog, this character could be one of those fighters that takes a bit of time to get used to, but is very powerful when in capable hands.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Crono (Chrono Trigger)
If Sora isn’t eligible for Ultimate due to legal reasons, Square Enix should opt for Chrono Trigger‘s Crono as a worthwhile replacement. Fans of this classic on the Super Nintendo Entertainment System would surely enjoy seeing the character recreated for the modern era, complete with his katana and lightning spells.
The franchise may not be as relevant as it used to be, though the original game did receive a PC port earlier this year. If Square Enix has plans on reviving Chrono Trigger in the future, having its main character in Ultimate may be a good place to start. The game’s timeless soundtrack alone makes Crono a strong addition.
Third-Party Characters in Super Smash Bros Ultimate – Rayman
Ubisoft has supported Nintendo platforms for years now thanks to its Just Dance series and creative new ventures like ZombiU and Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle. It’s clear that a healthy relationship exists between the two companies, as Ubisoft provided Super Smash Bros Director Masahiro Sakurai with a Rayman character model for the series’ Wii U and 3DS iterations (when his team only needed 2D references for trophies).
As a friendly homage to their business partnership together, Ultimate could include a playable version of the European company’s most popular mascot. Rayman would be a unique character to play as given his levitating appendages, which is something that Sakurai and Nintendo always look for to keep the experience fresh.
In recent years, the Super Smash Bros series has taught the industry to never say never. No matter what fighters Nintendo decides to include in Ultimate, fans should be grateful for the ones who’ve already earned a spot. After all, there are very few franchises out there that allow players to shoot fireballs as Mario and perform an Omnislash in midair as Cloud. Ultimate feels like a proper celebration of gaming’s imaginative history, the likes of which should be regularly used as inspiration for the future.