Though a teaser image appeared a few days ago that hinted at the possibility of Nintendo characters in the upcoming Scribblenauts Unlimited, today we have official confirmation from publisher Warner Bros. Interactive that “characters and items” from Nintendo’s Super Mario Bros. and Legend Of Zelda franchises will appear in the game.
The announcement makes no mention of which characters might appear in the game — though Link and Mario are safe bets — but it does claim that the Nintendo characters will “behave in the fun and fantastical ways they do in their respective game worlds.” So, Link will swing his sword and Mario will shoot fire balls?
Notably absent from the announcement is word on how these Nintendo icons might appear in the game. Given that Scribblenauts Unlimited uses a relatively wide-open side scrolling game world, it’s entirely possible that you might stumble into them on your journeys and have actual, meaningful character interaction. On the other hand it’s much more likely that these characters will simply be new additions to the in-game dictionary. Type in “Bowser” and Scribblenauts Unlimited will summon a giant turtle-dragon to stomp on things for you.
It should be pointed out that this announcement seems to signal the start of a trend for the Wii U. When taken alongside the news that the console’s iteration of Tekken Tag Tournament 2 will include special, Nintendo-themed costume customization options, it seems as if Nintendo is making a push to elevate the appeal of third party games by injecting them with some minor amount of Nintendo’s own fan-favorite characters. Whether or not that strategy will actually benefit third-party development on the Wii U to any noticeable degree is anyone’s guess, but at least it shows that Nintendo realizes that historically its consoles have had poor third-party support. Maybe now, finally, the company wants to change that.