With Nintendo’s final Super Smash Bros. Direct presentation set to air tomorrow, rumors are naturally everywhere throughout the fan community. While that would typically be more than enough to fuel speculation, last week’s announcement of Minecraft: Wii U Edition has poured a proverbial gas can on the fire. A number of rumors are now in the wild, with some looking more likely than others. Several have already been debunked, so we’ve compiled a list of what’s out there and what you should take with a grain of salt!
Perhaps the most plausible rumor that has emerged since the Minecraft news is that it may increase the likelihood of Banjo and Kazooie appearing in Super Smash Bros. The bird/bear duo were a staple of the Nintendo 64 era, and apparently found heavy support in the online Smash polling. The fan demand was apparently strong enough to receive a response from Microsoft’s own Phil Spencer who said “it would be cool” to see the character appear in the game. Could Minecraft: Wii U Edition have been a gift to Nintendo in exchange for promoting a character owned by Microsoft? We’ll likely have a definitive answer in the next 24 hours!
With Banjo and Kazooie as potential favorites for tomorrow’s Smash Direct, it might make sense to see their earlier adventures appear on Wii U. Over the last week, fans have petitioned Microsoft and Rare about the possibility of Rare Replay appearing on the console. Sadly, it appears that the compilation title will currently remain an Xbox One exclusive. Rare quickly debunked the rumors themselves (apparently they’re busy working on Sea of Thieves), but that wouldn’t necessarily rule out a Virtual Console release for either Banjo-Kazooie or Banjo-Tooie. That likelihood no doubt hinges on whether or not the duo makes the cut in Smash. Again, this one we could know about within the next 24 hours.
Nintendo’s biggest surprise in the last year has been the unrivaled success of Amiibo. Since last week, fans have been asking Microsoft whether or not we’ll see an Amiibo of Minecraft‘s protagonist. It certainly doesn’t seem out of the question. With a Shovel Knight figure on the way in early 2016, the doors seem pretty open for any Nintendo-friendly developer. Perhaps we’ll even see an Amiibo bundle to coincide with Minecraft‘s physical release! Helen Zbihlyj of Microsoft Studios chimed in on the prospect with a response that certainly shows the publisher is aware of the fan demand.
We do know that there’s a lot of demand for a Minecraft Amiibo- no idea if we’ll get one. As for Alex and Steve making an appearance in other games, the studios that develop those games would need to reach out to us directly about it. :)
On the opposite end of the spectrum of likelihood, some fans have assumed that this newfound teamwork could extend beyond this console generation. One rumor even suggests that the NX could stand for “Nintendo Xbox.” With Nintendo struggling to gain ground in North America and Microsoft struggling to appeal to Japanese audiences, some believe the next console from both companies could be a collaborative one. Considering that both companies have very different business philosophies, this one seems more like a fan dream than anything else.
Exciting as it is, it’s important to remember that the Minecraft: Wii U Edition announcement may have been a one-shot deal. After all, the title has appeared on Sony platforms, as well. This could be nothing more than Microsoft acknowledging that there is a market for the title on Wii U. It’s fun to speculate, but, at the end of the day, Nintendo’s current console is getting a solid addition to its already strong lineup. Anything else is just icing on the cake. Feel free to speculate away in the comments below!