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You know, I think it was worth the wait. I wasn't ready for this until now. It's just right. Like waiting for a real and true love. A mature relationship not based on vanity or desperation like before.
So happy about Banjo-Kazooie--it really brings me back to the glory days of the N64 (which, let's face it, weren't always that glorious). Back when you could expect a game by Rare every year, a high-quality Nintendo-like title that had its own brand of polish and humor. Seeing them in Smash is like being reacquainted with old friends, and as usual, Sakurai did a bang-up job capturing their personalities through the moveset, animations and designs.
I also dig the Spiral Mountain remix and hope for more! The little nods to the rest of the BK soundtrack in there shows that Kirkhope really has a special place in his heart for this OST. I still think BK's soundtrack is easily his best work.
And the crazy thing is, BK isn't even my favorite Smash reveal of yesterday. Seeing my top third-party series Dragon Quest finally get its long-overdue spot in Smash Bros is like a dream come true. Even the constant hints and rumors of Erdrick's inclusion didn't dull my hooting and hollering when that very first note of the Dragon Quest overture played. The Nintendo NY Direct reaction is an accurate representation of me seeing Hero for the first time.
And then the protagonists from DQ3, 4 and 8 (among my favorites in the series) also showing up!? I can't decide who to play as! One way or another, I've found my fifth main and I plan on taking him to the ranks of the Elite.
Amidst all the excitement, it's been bugging me seeing so many people down on Hero for being "another anime swordsman." DQ invented the classical game hero archetype, man. Their issue is with the mishandling of Fire Emblem, because DQ's leads were swinging swords and slinging spells years before anyone else in the Smash roster was. I was hoping the Banjo fans in particular would share some camaraderie with the DQ ones considering yesterday was big for both fanbases. Oh well--hopefully Hero's inclusion gives the series another popularity boost in the US, because it deserves it.
One more thing. That ResetEra mod or whoever that leaked Banjo's inclusion for his 15 minutes of fame can go jump in a lake. I'm so sick of people spoiling things for their own benefit.
I was admittedly pretty bored when it was just the new protagonist as a fighter, though I respected the decision to give Dragon Quest representation completely and was nodding in approval... then all of the sudden you can choose from three other characters visually as well? That's really neat. I think I would have really liked it if they could have done that with some Final Fantasy characters... but Cloud is cool too.
If it had been just the Dragon Quest DLC, I'd have been pleased. Then they dropped the bear and bird bomb too. I don't want new Smash fighter announcements to ever end.
@TriforceBun Yeah, spoilers stink. People have gone from tolerating them to defending them to actually being hostile towards people who don't like them. Like, what the hell? Is there a single benefit in knowing something about a video game 72 hours ahead of time?
I don't even watch movie trailers anymore. They completely undermine the narrative structure of the film.
And people who spoil stuff for kicks are genuine monsters.
@Hinph In related news, I was thinking yesterday about Sakurai's famous "I'm not going to make any more elaborate in-game cutscenes, because they just get leaked on Youtube" quote. He has apparently redirected all of that budget and energy into reveal trailers which ARE still able to deliver that level of shock and surprise and delight.
And, I've gotta say... what a great decision! The Smash reveal trailers might just be individual marketing moments, frozen in time, but what moments they are. Communal megatons. The Subspace Emissary cutscenes kind of blend together in my memory, but watching those Smash reveal trailers reminds me of my state of mind when I watched them, their cultural impact on the gaming scene at the time, etc.
Oddly, now that I've gotten Hero and BK, I'm pretty much satisfied with whatever. For my tastes, there are few characters left that I'd go nuts over so I'm almost less excited for the last two, in a way. I do still think that Nintendo's own series could use a rep (Advance Wars and Rhythm Heaven in particular) but I'm not too interested in many of the Western IPs thrown around in these talks (Minecraft, Halo, Tomb Raider) with the possible exception of Doomslayer.
For the first tiny bit of the DQ Hero reveal trailer I joked to myself that he was another Link clone. His shield blocks projectiles just like Link's! And his dash attack is basically the same! But otherwise the character looks cool and unique among the other swordies. A spell menu!
Something about B-K's big eyes seems a bit off to me, but I guess I never actually played those games. Maybe it's just that no other Smash character has big ol' peepers like that.
(EDIT: But in all seriousness, it is his proportions that are off a touch. It's fine, passable, and not nearly as bad as Nuts and Bolts Banjo, but it isn't perfect. Which is odd, because usually Smash Brothers does every character perfectly!)
(EDIT2: Actually... After looking at it and the other official versions that exist of Banjo... I'm not sure it could be done better. Interesting. That may simply be the best possible Banjo, I'm unsure.)
Let's face it--Rare's character design was good but sometimes a little iffy. I think for B/K to look better than they currently do, Sakurai's team would've had to rework him a bit, like with Mega Man. IMO K. Rool feels just so slightly "off" as well.
Yeah, I didn't care too much about the CG scenes in game, but the reveal trailers are pretty much my favorite moments in Nintendo Directs now. I hope this DLC does well enough for Nintendo and Sakurai to say "hey, how about five more fighters?" Of course, I don't want Sakurai to be a slave to this if he wants to move on.
There's only a few characters left that I'd make squeeling noises for if they were revealed, true, but I still think lots of "lesser" characters could still make for some really cool, worthy additions. I just don't want it to stop. Hah.
Yeah, who do you guys think the other two fighters will be? I'd have thought it could be anyone, but I also figured that, if they did Banjo, they'd save him for last. How can they top him!?
Master Chief - This would be crazy, but we already have a Microsoft rep! There aren't many memorable Halo characters other than Chief and Cortana to spice the stage up with either. Nintendo seems really intent on going all-out with each of these characters to celebrate their franchise, and I'm not totally sure if Halo's flavor matches up well with that kind of celebration.
Crash Bandicoot - This guy's flavor does! And he'd be the Sony rep! But... Crash Bandicoot's whole vibe really feels like an artifact of the 90s'. I know we're celebrating gaming history here, but I think that in 50 years people will be looking back on Banjo-Kazooie a lot more fondly than on the Crash trilogy. I could see him making it in prior to Banjo, but you can't top Banjo with Crash! (Ditto for Spyro.)
Waluigi - He'd be a cool final character to reveal as fanservice, but he's also kind of irrelevant. We want third parties that we can celebrate, not obscure Mario characters! What would his stage be!?
Geno - Every pro and con of Waluigi times two. It'd be hilarious, but I don't think they're gonna waste a slot on an Easter Egg joke character.
Steve from Minecraft - ...maybe? I know "but it's an indie game!!!" is a dumb argument when it was the most popular game in the world, and it's not like Bayonetta fits in any better, but something still feels off about it to me.
Goku - Not gonna happen, video game characters only.
Sans - Not iconic enough, lol.
Rayman - I could see this one happening! Bring in the Mario Rabbids and you'd have a whole stage. It's kinda surprising we don't have a Ubisoft rep yet, and there aren't too many other old gaming mascots left.
Tetris Block - Like, what other iconic gaming series have they not covered already!? What am I forgetting!?
I would really like Rayman and Tetris Block, but as I said earlier, I'm totally content with the DLC pass as is now, so go nuts! Crash kinda feels like a poor man's Banjo (sorry Crash fans). Goku would make me quit, which is funny because my previous most-wanted was DQ Hero, who looks very similar (it's those Toriyama eyes). Some other choices:
Doomslayer - I think he's more likely than Master Chief, even though his series is more violent. There's even more gaming history here plus some decent ties to Nintendo, along with modern relevance.
Lara Croft - Admittedly one of the best-known game characters that isn't already in Smash Bros. yet. Seems pretty unlikely, but she's not terribly violent and stranger things have happened.
Leon/Chris/Jill - Resident Evil is a major series with big ties to Nintendo, and it's still going strong. Probably my current favorite non-pie-in-the-sky pick (I think I have to let go of the idea of Terra Branford ever making it to SSB).
Heihachi - I guess. Is Tekken a big draw these days?
Lloyd Irving/Yuri Lowell - Although the new Tales trailer not coming to Switch may lower their chances.
Rabbid - I'd much rather Rayman, but these loudmouths still have a shot thanks to the crossover.
I couldn't begin to guess the last two characters, just a more general thing that I think they'll continue with the current theme and they will both be third-party characters.
As for the look of Banjo-Kazooie, I feel like they were designed with N64 graphics in mind, and so they look a bit off when they become more detailed. Of course, I'm probably just too used to seeing them in N64 games.
@Secret_Tunnel Also Minecraft doesn't really count as an indie game anymore, Microsoft bought it and it has serious development power behind it now. Nintendo already lent them Nintendo stuff for the Minecraft Nintendo version, I could see them using Steve (and probably Alex too) in Smash.
@Mop it up I'd say I have no idea what the last 2 are going to be, but so far Joker is the only one that has been like WHAT, ARE YOU SERIOUS? Dragon Quest (in some form) and Banjo-Kazooie have long been rumored. Either Nintendo is listening, or the rumors were based on solid info, or something.
Which makes me think a few of the other rumored characters might be possible... Minecraft Steve, for starters.
Ryu Hayabusa - another character that originated on NES (I think? Or did the arcade game come first?). Has had a long history with Nintendo and I think other recent collabs with Tecmo make him not entirely unlikely.
Rayman - Ubisoft and Nintendo have been getting along rather well lately. Seems pretty likely to me. My only question is; how could they possibly do an amiibo for him?
Sub-Zero - we already have Street Fighter reps, and what other fighting game dominated the ‘90s? Mortal Kombat also recently came back to Nintendo hardware, so the timing seems apt. Plus, Sub-Zero is iconic and his ice-style moves could easily translate to less violent equivalents.
Those are all fantastic. I'd probably want Scorpion just a little tiny bit more since he's kind of the face of the series, but Sub-Zero is squeel worthy too. Imagine all these cutesy fighters in the haunted forest or the pit stage. Joyfully hilarious.
See, two more fighters isn't enough. Please, one more DLC pack. Get Master Chief in there too since Microsoft is down. Just do it.