Koei Tecmo and Nintendo have gotten quite chummy in recent years. The two Japanese developers originally partnered up to create Hyrule Warriors, a Zelda-themed take on Koei's long-running Dynasty Warriors franchise. The game performed better than expected, and the two companies partnered up again for Fire Emblem Warriors last year.
With a pair of successful crossover titles under their collective belts, what's next next for the Nintendo-Koei relationship? If Koei's President gets his way, it'll be a Mario collaboration. Hisashi Koinuma has been a fan of Mario since childhood, and it's been a long-time dream of his to work on a game starring the plumber.
Way back in 2015, Koinuma revealed that he wanted Koei to work on a Dynasty Warriors style game using Nintendo IP like Mario and Pokémon. Earlier this year, he echoed similar sentiments while speaking with Kotaku. Koinuma stated back in January that Star Wars and Mario are the two IP he'd most love to work with. Although he thinks they could fit as Warriors games, he'd settle for any use of the character, and even suggested some sort of simulation game for Mario.
With Hyrule Warriors and Fire Emblem Warriors serving as proof of Koei's ability to handle Nintendo IP with care, is it time for them to get a shot at Mario? After Ubisoft shocked us all with Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle, anything is possible.