A new RPG involving the Raving Rabbids and Super Mario characters called Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle is coming August 29, 2017 to the Nintendo Switch.
Here’s everything you need to know.
1. Rumors of the Game’s Existence Go As Far Back as October of 2016
The game was first reported by French website GameBlog, calling it “a Yoshi/Rabbid Rabbits crossover.”
Games Journalist Laura Kate Dale also contributed a number of info from sources about the game back in January, including that the game’s music is supposedly going to be made by legendary Composer Grant Kirkhope. Sources also told her that Beyond Good and Evil 2 is going to be a timed exclusive on the Switch.
Kotaku’s Jason Schreier confirmed that a Mario x Rabbids RPG crossover is coming to the Nintendo Switch this August or September.
Kotaku received art assets of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle from an anonymous source who told them not to share them. The assets confirm not only that the game exists but a number of details about the game including the Mario character costumes for the Rabbids, the RPG elements, the laser guns, and the fact that the game is being developed by Ubisoft’s proprietary Snowdrop engine.
The key art for the game was eventually leaked as well as slides supposedly from a presentation about the game.
2. It’s a Turn-Based RPG with Laser Guns
The game has Mario and friends along with Rabbids dressed as Mario characters wielding laser guns in turn-based, tactical battles.
A mysterious vortex has torn apart Mario’s world and flung the Rabbids into it. To bring it back together, Mario, Luigi, Princess Peach, and Yoshi must team up with their Rabbid counterparts and journey across four different worlds.
Players explore a 3D environment, collecting coins, solving puzzles, finding secrets, and interacting with other characters and objects. There’s also a hub world with Peach’s castle which will grow over time.
Battle has a team of three moving around the field using cover, similar to XCOM. Characters can combine their abilities to help each other such as giving one teammate a massive jump to go over obstacles. Abilities include Mario’s Hero Sight which allows him to shoot an enemy as soon as they move within his line of sight. You can also use the environment to your advantage, going through pipes to flank opponents. Different objectives are also on offer including reaching a certain point on the map or defeating enemies.
There are also new weapons to collect as well as skill trees to upgrade.
Amiibo support is confirmed according to Nintendo Everything, but specifics haven’t yet been shared.
3. Shigeru Miyamoto Came to Introduce the Game
Shigeru Miyamoto, Creative Fellow of Nintendo and the man behind Mario and more, came to Ubisoft’s E3 Press Conference joining Ubisoft Chief Executive Officer Yves Guillemot with a life-sized laser cannon.
These are very different to the weapons in Ghost Recon.
Miyamoto came to thank Ubisoft for their collaborations over the years even though they often see each other as rivals. He has known Guillemot for 25 years. He also has Rabbid figures decorating his desk.
4. It’s Not the First Mario/Rabbids Crossover Game Planned
Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle wasn’t the first Mario/Rabbids crossover to be conceived. YouTuber and Comicbook.com Writer Liam Robertson (aka the Game History Guy) said the concept was floating around since 2010. He received info from a source that Ubisoft were experimenting with an adventure game set where the Rabbids invaded the mushroom kingdom as well as concept art for the game to back it up. An early story idea revolved around a “subversive, self-aware take on the Mario series.”
However, a formal pitch was never made and the project ended up as an internal concept and stayed that way. Another source involved with the concept told Robertson that the project may have been shut down by Nintendo before it was even pitched possibly due to their reluctance to let third parties use their Mario IP at the time.
Robertson didn’t find a direct connection between the lost Mario/Rabbids adventure game and Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle.
5. It’s One Game in the Decades Old Raving Rabbids Series
The Raving Rabbids appeared in games on a number of Nintendo systems along with other platforms starting with Rayman Raving Rabbids on the Nintendo Wii in 2006. Rayman Raving Rabbids was going to be a more traditional 3D Rayman game in the same vein as the cancelled Rayman 4 before being turned into a minigame collection as a spin-off series for Rayman. Rabbids Land was a launch title on the Wii U.