E3 rumors: Star Fox Wii U to detonate space-monkeys in HD, courtesy of Donkey Kong Country Returns dev

When it comes to seeding rumours about supposed unannounced first-party Nintendo games, adding a reference to Retro Studios' involvement in order to add plausibility is rapidly becoming the equivalent of "A wizard did it". So prolific has the Texas studio been in rebooting core Nintendo franchises since Metroid Prime that it's name has become the default go-to authenticator with which to add weight to a story without adding too much troublesome detail.

To that end, this latest of the swelling number of E3 2012 rumours is a tricky one to gauge. On the one hand, it's too damn obvious to be plausible, and so has very likely been made up by an internet hoax-merchant of limited imagination. On the other hand, it's so damn obvious that it must be true. 

Above: This sort of thing, please. But with the right names. And not another remake

The details of the story, such as they are, are that Retro is working on a new Astral Vulpes game (why Nintendo didn't use that alternative title instead of Star Wing or Lylat Wars in Europe, I don't know), but that while the game will be on show at E3, it won't be out for the Wii U's launch. Any more than that, we do not currently know, and the fact that the site seeding this one mentions a quote from Retro regarding its current Wii U project (“It's a project everyone wants us to do”) without any citation whatsoever is a bit dubious.

Looks like we'll find out at E3 then. But is this plausible? Personally, as a tech demo at least, I reckon a new HD Star Fox would be a perfect fit for the Wii U's all-important re-reveal following Nintendo's bungled attempt last year. Satoru Iwata has been speaking with increased frequency lately about the need to sell this console to core gamers, and emphasising the processing grunt is going to be a vitally important part of that equation. 

Above: Because in lieu of anything concrete since last year's E3, Photoshopping screenshots onto the Wii U controller is just what you do

Zelda aside, there's no first-party Nintendo franchise better placed to do that that Star Fox. Spaceships. Huge explosive battles. Lasers. Shiny anthropomorphic toads. You know a fully current-gen iteration could be visually mind-blowing. Though on the flipside, it's debatable whether a furry-baiting rail-shooter would really be enough to pull in much excitement outside of the core Nintendo-fan crowd. And with a machine that's reportedly mighty of horsepower but certainly not next-gen, Nintendo is going to need a hell of a lot of crossover appeal in its exclusive line-up if it's going to get the Wii U into the homes of existing PS3 and 360 owners. 

Whaddaya reckon?

(Also, yes I am fully aware that Retro Studios' previous work on Donkey Kong Country Returns gives me all kinds of opportunites to make jokes about rolling barrels and barrel rolls on this page, but you'll understand if basic self-respect stops me.)


  • ncurry2 - May 10, 2012 9 a.m.

    What better Nintendo owned company to make a game that will showcase a console's hardware prowess than Retro? I'm not sure if it will be a StarFox game (though I certainly wouldn't be surprised if it is) but I'd be willing to bet whatever they've been working on will be shown at E3 and it will likely be the most impressive looking WiiU game at the show.
  • shawksta - May 10, 2012 9:15 a.m.

    Well major point is that Retro's Making a Wii U game, whatever it is that ” Everyone wants us to do” it will no doubt be awesome. If anything DKCR has one HELL of an AWESOME Environment and atmosphere, and with Star Fox being all about Atmosphere and awesome lookiny space backgrounds God knows how Retro can make it look. Though I lay pity, Star Fox neede more than the on-rails flight, assault's land was flawed and unless retro can fix that they need to think of something to refresh the series. Though who am I kidding, Retro might bring new concpts to the onrails whatevers gonna happen it will be suprising Star Fox or not. Damn it E3 come faster.
  • brad-harris - May 16, 2012 1:49 p.m.

    I wouldn't hesitate to guess that the mechanics might work somewhat similarly to Kid Icarus: Uprising. On rail air battles, with a somewhat "Free-Range" environment for land battles.
  • shawksta - May 16, 2012 7:58 p.m.

    True, i mean Assault could be fixed and Uprising's worked. Retro studios are full of potential though, they can make something out of their mind we wouldnt expect.
  • slimjim441 - May 10, 2012 9:42 a.m.

    If it's Retro, it's automatically good. Excitement: tantamount.
  • LOZ4EVAH - May 10, 2012 9:53 a.m.

    So excited for E3! Retro Studios are just plain awesome!
  • Boonehams - May 10, 2012 11:26 a.m.

    "...Zelda aside, there's no first-party Nintendo franchise better placed to do that than Star Fox." I see your Star Fox and raise you an F-Zero.
  • SpiritTemple - May 10, 2012 4:41 p.m.

    I see your F-Zero and raise you a Kid Icarus. In Nintendo we trust.
  • brad-harris - May 16, 2012 1:47 p.m.

    Loved Kid Icarus since orginal NES; downloaded it for my Wii; preordered Uprising, and got the 3d Classic. Uprising is an amazing game, btw, if you ask me! 3DS FC - 5026-4492-9724
  • GR_DavidHoughton - May 11, 2012 1:29 a.m.

    Fair point, well made. If Retro unveil a 1080P, 60 FPS F-Zero, I will weep.
  • Dadyo238 - May 10, 2012 11:31 a.m.

    If it's Retro, then it's win.
  • SpiritTemple - May 10, 2012 4:39 p.m.

    I get more excited for E3 everyday ^_^ In Nintendo we trust.
  • IceBlueKirby - May 10, 2012 6:12 p.m.

    I would give Retro ALL THE MONEY to make a new, on-rails Star Fox game. ALL. THE. MONEY.
  • ThatGamerDude - May 10, 2012 7:03 p.m.

    But what should we name such a game? How about we remake the original Star Fox 2 (Ya know, the one that got cancelled...) Yeah that'll be great.
  • brad-harris - May 16, 2012 1:43 p.m.

    @ThatGamerDude: Clearly, if this is true, it looks to be a prequel, as they featured James McCloud (not Fox). I can think of several cheesy titles for the game, but I'm kinda diggin "Starfox: The Rise of Andross"! :D

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