Ubisoft is one third party that looks to be embracing the Nintendo Switch, as it’s partnered with The Big N, itself, to produce a rather creative exclusive for the console/handheld mix. One that not many people would have seen coming, if it weren’t for some of the rumours that existed prior to E3.
In Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, Ubisoft’s zany Raving Rabbids have somehow made their way to the beautiful Mushroom Kingdom by way of teleportation. This emergence has caused a disruption in the force, so to speak, and has led to chaos within the idyllic homeland that Mario and company are always fighting to protect. The result is not only physical damage and geographical alteration, but the creation of a new enemy as well. That is, the evil Rabbids, who have seemingly drank some unethical Kool-Aid and decided that they should fight against our heroes.
The best way to describe this amalgamation of popular properties is to call it a mixture between Mario-style exploration and colourful, turn-based strategy gameplay that is similar to XCOM in some ways. Of course, this is a Nintendo game at heart, so things won’t be as mature, methodical, challenging or punishing as they are in the those games. Instead, Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle looks to be a nice, colourful take on tactical gameplay, which mixes humour and comedic animations with its hit point reducing combat.
As players explore the Mushroom Kingdom, they’ll come across battle zones, which are basically flat areas with different types of grid-based cover, some of which can be destroyed. On these battlefields, good guys and bad guys will face off on opposing sides, using blaster-like weapons and special moves. This includes team jumps, which can drastically improve the amount of ground that a character can cover in one move, as well as the ability to flank your enemies.
To help announce this new project and celebrate the partnership that led to its creation, Mr. Miyamoto joined Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot on stage at the Orpheum Theatre in Los Angeles. There, they carried life-sized replica blasters from the game, and jokingly squared off against each other, before beginning to talk about how exciting this project is.
Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle is, of course, a Nintendo Switch exclusive, and will be released on August 29th. Launching alongside the game will be a set of new amiibo figures featuring the likenesses of its Nintendo-themed Rabbids.