This year’s E3 is just a couple of days away, and with it a pretty lengthy Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS conference. Among other things, we’ll get to see the game in action, more concretely thanks to the tourney Nintendo has prepared where some of the best players in the world will compete against each other. But the highlight of the day will probably go to the event we’re waiting so much for: the reveal of new challengers. The internet, which has been debating hotly the past few months over which characters may make the cut, has been boiling lately in anticipation of the big event. In this article we will bring you some of the choices that have been discussed in the fans’ forums, as well as the reasons why they should become a part of Smash Bros. Chances are, more than one or two of these guys will be revealed as newcomers pretty soon.

Now, this article will draw heavily from forum’s discussions (mostly Gamefaqs’ and SmashBoards’) and so-called leaks (which, at this stage, could either be true or not), the most important of which is Gematsu’s leak—it wouldn't hurt if you got familiarized with it first. Now, note that these are all speculative sources and hold no authority. This is just a summary of the talks that have been going on the internet lately so that you can approach the E3 with an informed opinion. I will also be quoting myself, more specifically from the articles where I argued that Isaac and more female characters may get in—I do so because I covered these characters extensively in those articles. It’s also important to note I won’t be tackling veterans, even those that were cut in Smash Bros. Melee—this article is solely devoted to actual newcomers. With that said, let’s get on to it!

Palutena

She’s the newcomer everyone agrees is coming. She’s got a stage for herself, is a very relevant character in Nintendo’s recent history due to her appearance in Kid Icarus: Uprising, is very well beloved by both Sakurai and the fans, and she’s appeared in a number of leaks—namely, that of Gematsu, and also these images (which, let’s face it, are probably fake anyway). She was also teased in April’s Nintendo Direct, when Sakurai showed a trophy depicting the back of Palutena, as if to deconfirm her, only to then show it was actually Fake Palutena. While she has not been yet confirmed, thinking that she will be in is a pretty safe bet.

Ridley

That’s the elephant in the room. That’s the newcomer that should have been introduced since Melee, but still has to take his spot in the Smash Bros. franchise. He has appeared in countless games as the main villain which Samus faces time and again, and, given how important Metroid has been to Nintendo, it’s only fair that it gets at least three characters—Samus, Zero Suit Samus and Ridley. However, it’s also true that, almost from the very start, there have been a number of arguments against him, ranging from his being too big to be playable to his having a scary appearance, which would present a sharp contrast to the rest of the cast. In truth, Ridley has been the most hotly debated character to date, with fans either strongly liking or strongly disliking him. In April’s Nintendo Direct he seemed to be deconfirmed by Sakurai showing him while talking about stage bosses, and that seemed to put an end to the discussion—but then, fans pointed out that it could actually be Ridley’s clone from Metroid: Other M, and that Sakurai could have actually been teasing him as a playable character. Whether Ridley will finally make it or not, in this or any other Smash Bros. game, is difficult to foresee. You are welcome to take your stance.

Fire Emblem Awakening newcomer

This game has not only been the most successful entry into its own saga, but it actually has been confirmed to have a stage on the new Smash Bros. (Arena Ferox), so the chances for it having a newcomer are pretty high. While it is more likely that Chrom would make it, there has been much controversy among the fans as to whether Smash Bros. really needs three blue-haired dudes with a sword. Many have argued that the character’s avatar, Robin, be included instead, especially since it could use magic to add some variety to the game—but many, many others have argued that having a blue-haired dudette wielding a sword would be much more appealing, especially since Lucina can be considered another of the game’s main characters. It could also be argued that she has a much more interesting role in the story than that of Chrom, but that is a matter of taste and personal preference. However, the fact that this game is going to have a character to represent Fire Emblem Awakening is almost as assured as Palutena’s inclusion.

Miis

Not only have they been leaked by Gematsu, but they have been introduced in quite a few of Nintendo games as unlockables or even the main character—one of the biggest surprises was to have them star on Mario Kart 7 and Mario Kart 8. Moreover, they have their own stage on Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS, Find Mii, which boosts their chances dramatically. There are countless possibilities for making a very original and appealing moveset, and many casual gamers would be satisfied by their inclusion. They are another pretty safe bet.

King K. Rool

Like Ridley, Donkey Kong’s main villain has taken part in countless games in one of Nintendo’s most prominent franchises, which should be enough to assure at least three characters in the new game. Not only would he have a very interesting moveset, given the variety of ways he has fought against the Kongs in each game, but he has also proven to be very popular among the fans. The main argument against him is that he has not played any major role in Nintendo’s recent history, and seems to have been a little left out from the franchise altogether. However, that shouldn't be enough to discard him altogether, seeing how Star Fox’s Wolf made into Smash Bros. Brawl despite the franchise not having been very active as of late.

Dixie Kong

She has recently appeared on Donkey Kong: Tropical Freeze, so she would have more relevance to the Donkey Kong franchise than King K. Rool. Like Fire Emblem Awakening, this game has met with much success, and has introduced the pink-clothed monkey to many fans of the Donkey Kong saga. Dixie has appeared in ten games so far, and has even had a whole game devoted to herself (Donkey Kong Country 3: Dixie Kong’s Double Trouble!), which would make her a pretty likely inclusion.

Isaac

The main character from Golden Sun, maybe the last major Nintendo franchise that still hasn’t got any representation. Spawning over three games, these have been very well received among the gaming audiences, despite the lack of a new iteration in the recent past and the lower quality of the latest game. He is, however, immensely popular among the fans—virtually every fan-made roster includes him as a playable character—and has even appeared in Smash Bros. Brawl as an Assist Trophy, and also had a superb remixed track that you can listen to here. His sword-and-magic fighting style would make for a really creative moveset that, if fleshed out correctly, would turn him into one of Smash Bros.’s more interesting characters. The fact that he wasn’t shown in April’s Nintendo Direct resuming his role as an Assist Trophy, as well as the fact that the first installment of the Golden Sun saga was released for the Wii U’s Virtual Console on the 17th of May are some other pointers towards his possible inclusion. For a more detailed debate on Isaac’s chances, take a look at his SmashBoards’ topic.

Shulk

The main character from critically and fan acclaimed game Xenoblade Chronicles for the Wii. It was released in 2010, so it’s definitely still a relevant game to Nintendo, and Shulk himself has proven to be quite popular among the fans. He is also on the list of characters leaked by Gematsu, which, at the very least, means he’s being considered as a very likely inclusion.

Pac-Man

For a long time he has been considered to be one of the most likely candidates to get a third party spot on Smash Bros., right after Mega Man, Sonic, and Snake. So, now that those three have already gotten out of the way, Smash Bros.’s next most likely third party candidate should be the yellow pill eater. He is, after all, a game icon that has gone down in history as the main character of one of the earliest games ever made, as well as one of the most popular ones, with countless remakes made after the original big hit. There’s also the fact that he’s been leaked by Gematsu, so, if you consider the leak to be true, then there’s yet hope for him.

Chorus Men

These pretty nondescript minor characters from Rhythm Heaven would probably have never made it into anyone’s mind had it not been for the Gematsu leak—and even then, many people are using it as definite proof that the leak is wrong altogether. However, it is also true that many are expecting what has been termed colloquially “the WTF character”—a character, that is, along the lines of Mr. Game & Watch in Smash Bros. Melee or R.O.B. in Smash Bros. Brawl. They were pretty unlikely characters, too, so who knows—better not to discard them until they have been confirmed or refuted.

Takamaru/Excitebiker/Balloon Fighter/Lip

For some reason, people seem to be pretty sure that there will be some final NES character revealed in the final stages of Smash Bros.’s development, and they are quite sure it will be one of those four. Takamaru is the main character of Nazo no Murasame-jō, a game that had not been released outside of Japan since its release in 1986, until the 29th of May, for the 3DS European Virtual Console. Now, this shouldn’t necessarily work against him, since Marth and Roy were included in Melee when Fire Emblem had still not come out of Japan. The Excitebiker needs no introduction, since almost everyone has played the NES classic ExciteBike, and it was also included in the recent NES Remix, among many other remakes. The Balloon Fighter’s chances seem somewhat higher, since he got his own stage for Smash Bros. for the 3DS—you can see it here. Finally, we have Lip, the heroine from Panel de Pon. Given that this is a puzzle game, it would no doubt add some variety to Smash Bros.’s fighting style.

Reggie Fils-Aime

The COO of Nintendo of America, while an unlikely newcomer, has been asked by the fans to be in Smash Bros. for Wii U and 3DS—and Sakurai has said that he might consider the possibility if enough people sign the petition. While the objective to get 100.000 signatures is still far from being achieved, there are, as of the moment of writing, 51.876 supporters, which probably makes him a much more wanted than many of the other newcomers. His chances of actually getting in are incredibly slim, though, and this entry was included only as a humorous end to the article. Please understand.

I think that pretty much covers the most popular characters that might get revealed at E3, although there are many more challengers people are contending for—and there’s always the chance that Sakurai will find some way to catch us all off-guard. What characters do you think will make the cut? Who would you like to see in this game?

Sources:

SmashBoards

AllGamesBeta