To the delight of many fans Super Smash Bros. Ultimate game director Masahiro Sakurai announced on Tuesday that Sora, from Disney’s Kingdom Hearts series, will be the last character to join a roster of 82 fighters. In the announcement trailer, the camera lingers on the Mickey Mouse-shaped charm on Sora’s signature weapon, the Keyblade, before we see Sora.
However, it looks like that’s the most we’ll see of the mouse.
Mickey and other mainstay characters and songs from Kingdom Hearts were notably missing from Tuesday’s announcements. The gameplay was not shown for Donald Duck or Goofy who both play major roles in the franchise. The answer why is pretty simple: While Nintendo could get permission for Sora’s appearance, for whatever reason it was unable to get a license for Disney’s A-listers.
Super Smash Bros is very aware of this absence. In the series, when a character from another franchise crosses over to the roster, it’s common for supporting characters from their world to appear in various forms. Waluigi is an example of such a trophy. In the background, other characters are stage guests.
However, the Sora DLC has no references to any other Disney characters. Stunted glass windows are from the Kingdom Hearts series on the Dive to the Heart stage that Sora is accompanying. Sora, a character from the game, is seated in one. While Sora’s friends, Riku and Kairi, are included in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s depiction of the window, Goofy and Donald Duck are missing. Fans were quick to notice that instead of the Disney characters’ faces appearing, there is now a boat and star in their place.
Characters aren’t all that’s missing. Sakurai revealed a track list of Kingdom Hearts songs to be in the DLC. That list didn’t include iconic songs from the series, like “Simple And Clean” or “Face My Fears” by Hikaru Utada.
These missing songs and characters ultimately serve as a reminder; even a seemingly expansive Nintendo franchise like Super Smash Bros. — which has incorporated characters from across vastly diverse franchises and games, from Minecraft to Sonic the Hedgehog — has its limits.
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