Microsoft Executive Is Open To Putting Banjo In The New Smash Bros

Microsoft Executive Is Open To Putting Banjo In The New Smash Bros

Banjo and his partner Kazooie haven’t been in a Nintendo game since 2005’s Banjo-Pilot thanks to complicated intellectual property rigamarole that cropped up when Microsoft acquired Rare in 2002. With a new Smash Bros. coming to the Switch, there’s plenty of speculation about new fighters. Microsoft’s Executive Vice President of Gaming seems completely fine with tossing in everyone’s favourite bird and bear duo into fray.

The upcoming Smash title for the Switch provides a new opportunity for amazing video game crossovers. And seeing how the series has features both Solid Snake and Cloud Strife, Banjo would hardly be the strangest fighter on the roster. Yesterday, an eager fan asked Phil Spencer, who heads the company’s Xbox division, if he’d be interested in seeing Banjo in Smash.

“Yep,” he said. I imagine that somewhere in the distance, at least seven people came up with a new Stop N’ Swop theories.

It isn’t the first time this has come up. Back in 2015, Microsoft’s Spencer, replied to a tweet asking if Banjo could be DLC for the latest Smash Bros. game, Super Smash Bros. 4. While one might expect the answer to be no, seeing as Microsoft and Nintendo are competing companies, Spencer’s answers was positive.

“I think it would be cool if Banjo was in the next SSB DLC,” he said at the time. “We’ve worked with Nintendo on Rare IP before, no issues.”

Nintendo and Rare collaborated on a number of projects before the company was acquired by Microsoft in 2002, including Goldeneye 007, Perfect Dark, Conker’s Bad Fur Day and Banjo-Kazooie. Copyright issues prevented an HD version of Goldeneye from coming to the Xbox 360. Meanwhile, companies such as Sony have attempted to create Smash-like titles such as PlayStation All-Stars Battle Royale but none of these projects contain crossover characters with Nintendo.

Of course, Spencer saying he’s down with Banjo being in Smash doesn’t really mean that much. There’s undoubtedly plenty of game designers and executives who would love to see their favourite character leap into the fray. But given Banjo’s connection to Nintendo and Spencer’s own enthusiasm, Banjo’s chances are much greater than, say, Dante.


  • I don’t see this working unless we somehow get a Banjo port on the Switch as well. Otherwise they are just advertising a competitors products.

    • Solid Snake appearing in Brawl wasn’t really a tie-in for any Nintendo game, more just Nintendo honouring a legacy character. It has happened before.

  • My moneys on a Monster Hunter, Dragon Ball or FFXV tie in at this stage.

    They tend to listen to fans a lot but I have no clue what folks are calling for at the moment.

  • “Hey Nintendo, put in this character that will never appear on your consoles again, and serves as advertising for Microsoft that you will need to pay licensing rights for.”

    As cool as this will be it will never happen unless Nintendo get Microsoft to make a new Banjo game that will also release on the Switch.

  • Wrong Gooky. I think Phil Spencer’s idea to bring both Banjo and Kazooie on to Super Smash Bros for the Nintendo Switch should be a great and smart idea. Because when I was a little kid I never played Banjo Kazooie on the Nintendo 64 since Banjo Kazooie came out for the Nintendo 64 back in 1998 which is 20 years ago. Now although UK developer Rare may no longer be partnering with Nintendo since they had licensing issues more than 30 years ago and that they didn’t include Donkey Kong or Goldeneye 007 in Rare Replay since it came out for the Xbox One back in 2015. I think it’s time that Rare brings us a Banjo Kazooie game on to the Nintendo Switch in the future and of course bring Banjo and Kazooie on to Super Smash Bros for the Nintendo Switch because I do agree with Phil Spencer’s idea to bring both Banjo and Kazooie on to Super Smash Bros. Count me in Phil Spencer I’m happy with your idea.

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