Nintendo is giving Super Smash Bros. Ultimate fans something they’ve wanted for a long time: Banjo and Kazooie from 1998’s Banjo-Kazooie for the N64. Today, Nintendo announced that the bear and Breegull partners will land in Smash fall, 2019.
In a 2018 poll of 20,000 fans, Banjo and Kazooie ranked number one among most-desired fighters in Smash Ultimate. Nintendo’s been on a roll adding in fan favorites, as the Banjo and Kazooie announcement rides on the heels of long-requested fighters like Ridley and King K. Rool’s inclusion in the 2018 game.
In 2018, a fan tweeted at Xbox head Phil Spencer—Microsoft has the rights to the characters—asking whether he’d lend Banjo and Kazooie to Nintendo for Smash. His response was short: “Yep.” (Banjo-Kazooie, Banjo-Kazooie Nuts & Bolts and Banjo-Tooie are receiving Xbox One X Enhanced updates, Microsoft announced yesterday.) Looks like Spencer followed through.
We didn’t get a thorough look at how Banjo and Kazooie will fight in-game, unfortunately, but what we did see looks really interesting. We did see Kazooie mow down opponents from inside Banjo’s backpack and shoot out little balls. We also saw Banjo slam Kazooie down for what looked like some major damage. Kazooie can help Banjo fly, too.
For a lot of fans, Banjo and Kazooie’s Smash debut isn’t a surprise. Last week, well-known leaker Shinobi602 posted on the gaming forum ResetEra, “Been a while since we saw Banjo in anything. Hope we’re in for a smashing good time.” Lots of Smash players took Shinobi602’s statement very seriously. Bolstering it was another leak: A new design Banjo-Kazooie merch.
Hopefully, the animal duo will live up to fans’ expectations. If Ridley and K. Rool’s super fun gameplay is any indication, though, Banjo and Kazooie will.