According to a listing we can only assume was accidentally pushed live, the next Kirby game is coming to Switch in autumn 2022.
Earlier today, the Switch release schedule on Nintendo’s official Japanese site was updated with an entry for 星のカービィ ディスカバリー, which roughly translates to Kirby Discovery. The page it links to isn’t accessible yet, but the accompanying image depicts Kirby gazing out on a seemingly post-apocalyptic world. A rusted automobile and chipped street sign sit ominously behind our rotund hero, and further into the background, an overgrowth of nature reclaims a handful of ruined skyscrapers.
It’s been years since we’ve seen a new Kirby game. His last mainline outing, Kirby Star Allies, arrived on Switch in 2018, which after the last few years we’ve had seems like ages ago. Since then, developing studio HAL Laboratories has occupied itself with projects like Kirby’s Extra Epic Yarn, a 2019 handheld port of the Wii game of the same name, and last year’s Kirby Fighters 2, a standalone follow-up to the mini-game from 2014’s Kirby: Triple Deluxe.
But the absence only makes sense. Kirby’s creator, Masahiro Sakurai, has been busy with a little game called Super Smash Bros. Ultimate for the last several years. With that crossover fighter’s post-release content coming to an end, is Sakurai finally returning to the series that made him a household name?
While there’s very little information about Kirby Discovery (or whatever it winds up being called when it hits western shores) at present, it’s possible we’ll learn more about this mysterious game during today’s Nintendo Direct. Nintendo’s promised around 40 minutes of new information on upcoming Switch releases and, barring the possibility that all that time is going to be spent on Metroid Dread and the rumoured updates to Nintendo Switch Online’s classic game offerings, the little pink puffball is surely going to be in the mix.