It’s safe to say that the relationship between Ubisoft and Nintendo is quite strong, although the success of Mario + Rabbids Kingdom Battle may have been a dead giveaway. Still, fans of both companies weren’t predicting another crossover outside of the aforementioned game’s Donkey Kong-related DLC.
Ubisoft clearly had other plans on that front.
During the company’s E3 2018 press conference, a trailer for the toys-to-life title Starlink: Battle for Atlas revealed that Star Fox‘s Fox McCloud would be joining the game as a playable character exclusively in the Nintendo Switch version of the game. This meshing of worlds makes perfect sense for the two firms given their budding relationship, but one thing that fans seem to be overlooking is that this could be a means of redeeming the series following the lacklustre Star Fox Zero on Wii U.
Now, I don’t intend to make claims that Zero was a bad game – I spoke highly of it upon its release and still believe it’s a fun-filled title – but the critical reception to its revamped controls and a disappointing 440,000 units shipped worldwide (via VGChartz) indicate that it didn’t hit the mark. In that light, Starlink looks like it can fill that void perfectly for eager fans of the Nintendo-owned property.
The toys-to-life aspect of Starlink is a little different than core fans may have initial anticipated, but the quality of the space combat appears to embody a true evolution of Star Fox more so than any other titles currently on the market. Plus there’s room for the rest of the crew to be rounded out if the initial launch is a success, allowing Falco, Peppy, and Slippy to join in on the action if Ubisoft’s new I.P. manages to resonate with consumers.
At the very least, this could lead to more collaborations between Ubisoft and Nintendo. Given the uniqueness and raw appeal of such a premise, it’s great to see franchises and beloved characters finding new life through the efforts of other, highly trusted studios.
Now, let’s get ready to do some barrel rolls.
Starlink: Battle For Atlas arrives for Nintendo Switch, Xbox One, and PlayStation 4 on October 16, 2018. Fox McCloud will launch as an exclusive for the Nintendo Switch version.
If you’re at all game, you can find Riley on Twitter at @TheRileyLittle. You may find him entertaining, but you probably will not.