The Super Smash Bros. Ultimate community is eager to find out who the game's next DLC character will be, and a rumored leak posted to r/SmashBrosUltimate this weekend suggests that Nintendo's flagship fighting game could receive its first guest fighter from SNK. We've got some guesses as to who it could be, though a certain swordsman with a large ponytail seems like the most likely pick.
The leak in question was allegedly spotted on a nintendo.co.uk store listing for Ultimate's fourth challenger pack, which has yet to be officially announced. A link to the page in question now redirects to a 404 page, but screenshots posted to Reddit and Twitter show a February 29, 2020 release date and a copyright notice for SNK Corporation beneath the pack's generic description.
If the next character coming to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is an SNK character, then there are several storied gaming series that Nintendo and SNK could pull from. An obvious choice could be a character from Samurai Shodown; this year's well-received reboot of the game is slated to come to the Nintendo Switch in the same quarter this leak alleges the fourth character pack will drop. Could Nintendo and SNK resist the urge to go with Haohmaru, the game's cover star? Seems unlikely. They could opt for Nakoruru or maybe even a deep cut pick to join the Smash fight, but if we were picking a Samurai Shodown character, then Haohmaru would be the frontrunner.
Then again, Smash's massive roster has plenty of iconic and nostalgic picks that don't adhere to the hot-new-cross-promo approach. Smash could easily incorporate a Fatal Fury or King of Fighters star (let us have Terry Bogard, Kyo Kusanagi or Mai Shiranui fight Ryu and Ken again), and it wouldn't be a stretch to add a Metal Slug character (Marco or Eri make a lot of sense, but give us disguise expert Hyakutaro Ichimonji, please). We won't hold our breath for one of the characters from SNK's Money Puzzle Exchanger, but that game has found a new audience through its Switch re-release.
As soon as Nintendo teases its next Direct presentation, which is where we're most likely to get confirmation of whoever the next Smash character is, we'll be on top of it. In the meantime, you can peruse our Super Smash Bros. Ultimate guides hub and get thinking about which fighter you think should come to the game, SNK or otherwise.