Nintendo showered us with everything we’ve ever wanted from a Smash Bros. game this morning when Banjo and Kazooie were announced as the third DLC fighter in the game. Many people seem to think this would be a difficult deal to make, requiring a lot of paperwork. However, Xbox head Phil Spencer says this was not the case:
The “how” is not actually that interesting. Obviously we’re one of the biggest third-party publishers on Switch, so we have great relationships with their third-party team. And you’ve seen the ambition they’ve had with every character that’s ever been in Smash and even more. So it was just kind of part of the partnership relationship we have with them.
There wasn’t anything kind of CEO-to-CEO that had to happen. People have asked me on social [media]—I’m sure you’ve seen that—over many years: “Would I welcome having Banjo in Smash?” and I’ve always been open to that.
For those who have followed Phil Spencer for a while, you may already know he’s been totally fine with having Banjo and Kazooie in Smash since the 3DS and Wii U games.
@PedroDarkinson I think it would be cool if Banjo was in the next SSB DLC. We've worked with Nintendo on Rare IP before, no issues.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) April 3, 2015
Banjo’s raring to go, at long last
The bear-and-bird duo initially appeared back in their own titular game, Banjo-Kazooie, made by Rare for the Nintendo 64. It’s still one of the most beloved franchises in Nintendo’s history, but fans’ hopes for them joining Smash took a nosedive when Microsoft purchased the studio for themselves. However, Microsoft and Nintendo have gotten along very well recently, so many gamers hoped that these two characters would finally make their way into Ultimate. Now, those hopes are at last fulfilled.
To be honest, I personally think I’m more surprised that Nintendo finally added Banjo and Kazooie into the game. Whether or not Microsoft was willing to cooperate was never in question, at least not for me. Now we just need Steve from Minecraft and Master Chief from Halo to join the fight. Then, all will be right in the world.
What did you think about today’s big reveal of Banjo and Kazooie? Are you hoping for more big third party characters in Smash? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!