With the recent news about the Nintendo Switch, one idea got rolling again: “If King Boo is in the Mario Kart segment of the Switch Trailer and the stage looks like one from Mario Kart 8, that could mean that we will get new characters for the Switch port of Mario Kart 8. Right?… So… How about Smash? Will it get a Port for the Switch? Will it get new characters? How many they could be? And which ones?”
Well, I’ll make my mission to give you some alternatives to answer those questions. But first, I want to talk about some hits and misses of my last series of articles about this very same topic…
If you don’t know what I’m talking about, I recommend you start at the beginning:
As you may see, It’s a long series (like 90 pages long) but I tried to make it light in tone and easy to read; and remember, every part has multiple pages, so don’t miss them!
For the rest of us, don’t worry, this time it won’t take you the whole afternoon to read it. (I hope.)
I’ll start with the “Elephants in the room” about those articles, I recommend you to read them, as those old articles have some issues that got corrected here.
Almost everyone that commented disagree with the “five representative slots” for the Pokémon and Fire Emblem franchises.
And they’re right! It’s rather improbable that two of the fastest growing Nintendo franchises get a cut in their representation, even more now that we might get an expanded roster instead of a new one. I did this in order to start a debate, and it apparently worked. The idea was to reduce the representation of both franchises to the point to leave only their most iconic characters, and if one starts to think in more than seven characters, that pressure is weaker, thus, letting in characters that may not be iconic enough.
If you want my opinion, I believe that, if we get a completely new game, we might get between six and eight Pokémon characters at release date. And for Fire Emblem six might be a reasonable number. Sadly if this happens to be true, if we get more characters from bigger franchises it may hinder the chance to get characters from smaller groups, like the “Retro” or “New Wave” which could present more interesting newcomers.
I’ll talk about their possibilities for Smash 4.5 on the Switch [later on this article].
To be fair… can anyone come up with a definitive answer to the Bayonetta ownership?
She was created by Platinum Games, but Sega has her distribution rights and owns her copyright. But at the time of Bayonetta 2, Sega stated that they weren’t involved in the game’s development or its distribution, working just as consultants. And being a Nintendo exclusive means that Nintendo owns the game to certain extents… So, who owns the character?
At the moment, in my opinion, the best way to categorize Bayonetta is to count her in the Third Party group. However, not in the Sega group but in the “other Third Parties” group or under the Platinum Games banner, taking Wonder Red with her as a possible second representative [EDIT: Wonderful 101 is owned by Nintendo, but was developed by Platinum Games, so it’s on a grey area betweeen being first party like Star Fox Zero, or Third Party as Bayonetta, as for this articles I take their group based on their Developers instead of their Publishers, and in this case, Platinum games isn’t owned by Nintendo, unlike Monolith soft, that is owned by Nintendo (First Party) or is commercially affiliated, like GameFreak, Intelligent System or even HAL (Second Party)… Thanks for your great feedback guys!]. Feel free to disagree.
The distribution of characters in groups was 100% arbitrary. In some cases it was easy, as clearly Samus and Zero Suit Samus belong in the Metroid group and not the Star Fox one. But for some of you Yoshi and Wario needed their own group based on the fact that they have their own symbols. I don’t agree with that, but I understand. Especially in Wario’s case, because he got his own series of spin-off video games with new and exclusive characters and chances to keep getting new games. Like what happened to the Donkey Kong franchise, which after the Donkey Kong Country series is being considered its own separate thing despite sharing spin-off appearances with the Super Mario family (including Yoshi and Wario).
Also, as stated in the first article: Franchises with just one character don’t have growth trends, so if I group them, they can gain some traction, but grouping Wario with the “Retro” characters (characters of franchises that were born before the Nintendo 64) seems a little off compared to grouping him with the Super Mario group.
On the other hand, F-Zero and Mother could be grouped with the Retro characters, as franchises that are in a long slumber (not dead as noted by “Ar”), but I decided to give them their own group in order to compare them to Kid Icarus, as a dormant retro franchise that came back versus two franchises that may come back… Eventually. But yeah, those two franchises could become “Retro” representatives.