So Nintendo is announcing another fighter for the forthcoming Smash Bros. game(s) on Monday - who's it gunna be? Speculation time!
I'm honestly surprised I haven't seen much Kinja talk on this yet. Nintendo doesn't usually give this much lead time to promoting a new Smash character, so it must be someone interesting.
It can't be a returning fighter, so these guys are out:
Although I find it hard to believe they won't include Captain Falcon. I also find it hard to believe the will include Solid Snake (mainly because he hasn't appeared on a Nintendo system in a while).
Also, on a personal note, I doubt he'll be in there but I hope they'll include R.O.B., given his significance in gaming history.
Same goes for Game & Watch, although I'm betting he is included.
Anyway, back to Monday's announcement... I also doubt it will any character that is too similar to an existing character, or that could be included with a simple costume change, like the male and female Wii Fit Trainers and Villagers. Like these dudes:
Before anyone complains, I know all of these can be unique characters (and Falco was my favorite fighter for a long time), but if there's a limited amount of game space, I doubt they'd waste a lot on a character that already has an analogue in the game.
Sure, Ganondorf was basically an altered Captain Falcon, but I'm betting he returns with an entirely new move set. Similarly, I'm hoping some of these guys show up with entirely original move sets as well.
But no... Monday's announcement has to be a new character to the franchise. That said, it probably isn't any of these characters:
It's not out of the realm of possibility that Nintendo will announce a third-party character, but these guys aren't going to be on the Wii U any time soon.
So, who does that leave us?
Some game possibilities (all odds are in no way scientific, but are instead made up by moi):
While it's unlikely they'd have a character too similar to an existing one, there are characters from Nintendo games that totally unlike existing fighters. Just because they are counting it down, doesn't mean it has to be a major surprise. Ridley, Captain Toad, King Hippo, and others are all distinct possibilities. The one with the most traction seems to be Ridley, but time will tell.
Odds: 2 to 1
There's an Inkling of a possibility Nintendo wants to build off the good vibes that have been growing around Splatoon by making a big splash about the game's inclusion in Smash Bros. What better way to increase the upcoming IP's profile than to have a cameo in the company's most anticipated game?
Odds: 7 to 1
Speaking of upcoming games, the Nintendo-produced Bayonetta 2 comes out soon, and Smash Bros. does need more female fighters.
Odds: 3 to 1
There's been some speculation that, since some Pilotwings stuff showed up in some publicity images, that a Pilotwings character will show up. This seems pretty unlikely as, well, who plays Pilotwings anymore? On the plus side, the little dude in the middle looks a lot like Nester (of "Howard and Nester" infamy, also Nester's Funky Bowling), and the old school Nintendo Power geek in me (that is to say, all of me) would love to have Nester in a Smash Bros. game.
Odds: 75 to 1
There are a lot more lower-profile Nintendo properties out there, like Pilotwings, but would they really need a whole weekend of suspense? So out goes Chibi-Robo, Dillon the Armadillo, and other characters that would be great additions to the franchise.
Minecraft would actually be a great fit for the Wii U, and it'd be interesting to see Minecraft-style images in a Smash Bros. game, but the property is a few years old now - practically ancient in gaming terms.
Odds: 10 to 1
Speaking of properties that gamers might be tired of, Angry Birds (or for that matter Plants vs. Zombies) may speak more to casual gamers than to the hardcore elite, but they might be a good way of drawing in a new audience.
Odds: 15 to 1
On the other hand, what if Nintendo seized on something currently popular to make a last minute addition to their game? It could happen!
Odds: 20 to 1
Mega Man is already part of this game, and gamers would love a chance to put more of the Capcom fighters against Nintendo's big guns. Think of the coup this would be for Nintendo, and the goodwill it would build for Capcom. Plus, who knows? Maybe it could lead to a Capcom vs. Nintendo game (Street Fighter-style) later on down the line.
Odds: 3 to 1
At the same time, Namco is helping make the game so it stands to reason they'd include more Namco characters. Some from Soul Calibur may need some aesthetic changes to better fit the Smash Bros. mores, however.
Odds: 2 to 1
Alright, what if it's a character not associated with games (that is to say, they've been in games, but they are more closely associated with movies or comics or something)?
Disney's done a pretty great job of promoting its characters lately, so it's possible one of the Avengers could show up in Smash Bros., or someone from Star Wars in anticipation of the up-coming Episode VII. If this was the case, it would not be one of the X-Men, Fantastic Four or Spider-Man (for various reasons), and it probably wouldn't be anyone who doesn't survive to Episode VII (as much as I'd love Yoda in these games).
Odds: 20 to 1
In contrast, Warner Bros. has not had a great track record with its superhero properties lately. Showing up in a game with a big puff ball and a mushroom-chomping plumber is just too much fun for them.
Odds: 100 to 1
Or it could be someone entirely out of left field...
Odds: ∞ to 1 (although you could always play as his Mii Fighter)
So, any other contenders? Someone you'd really want to see in a game? I made my own list of dream picks before Brawl came out, and was happy to see some of them made it in. Maybe more will make it in this time? Who knows.... who... knows....