Super Smash Bros. Ultimate features Incineroar, a fiery cat-like creature from Pokemon Sun and Moon. But Masahiro Sakurai, the Super Smash Bros. series director, has revealed that Incineroar just beat out another Pokemon to make the final roster of the game.
This other Pokemon is none other than Decidueye. As you can see in the recap of a recent Sakurai interview (and relayed by SourceGaming), the director reveals that Incineroar only just beat out Decidueye to make the final roster of Super Smash Bros. Ultimate.
Sakurai confirms in an interview: Decidueye was almost chosen for the new Pokémon spot.- PushDustIn (@PushDustIn) January 20, 2019
Thanks to @japanese3ds and @AllSourceGaming for the heads up. There's not a whole lot of new information in the interview, but here's a tweet thread of the neat tidbits. pic.twitter.com/pi0McYBZJp
Incineroar and Decidueye both come from Pokemon Sun and Moon. While Incineroar is the final evolution from Litten, Decidueye is the final evolution from Rowlett, both of which are two of the three Pokemon you can choose from at the start of the games.
Elsewhere in the interview, Sakurai comments on a lack of Nintendo-exclusive characters in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate. The roster of the latest Smash Bros. game had to be laid out a fair bit in advance, and so relatively new Nintendo characters from games like ARMS and Xenoblade Chronicles 2 unfortunately didn't make the cut.
Sakurai also revealed that King K. Rool (a personal favorite fighter of mine), was designed to be able to do things that a heavy character wouldn't normally be able to do. Perhaps this is in reference to K. Rool's helicopter-like ability, where he can soar up into the air via a small propeller.