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Donkey Kong and Pikmin Could Have Had Cameos in Super Mario Galaxy 2

Posted by Thomas Whitehead

Yoshi would have enjoyed the company

There was a lot of talk about Mario at this year's GDC — Game Developer's Conference — including the revelation that Super Mario 3D Land could have had skateboarding. Koichi Hayashida, a leading figure in recent Mario titles, revealed that particular piece of information when on stage, but in an interview with GameTrailers he turned his focus to ideas that didn't make the cut in Super Mario Galaxy 2.

When quizzed about potential Mario power-ups inspired by Nintendo characters from other franchises, Mr Hayashida instead confirmed that he'd proposed Donkey Kong and Pikmin cameos in the Wii sequel.

One of the early proposals that we discussed for Super Mario Galaxy 2 was the possibility of including characters from other [Nintendo] franchises. For example, you might have Donkey Kong or Pikmin show up.

We presented this to Mr. Miyamoto, but he came down pretty hard, saying that there has to be a functional reason to include characters of a certain type in a game. He went to specify precisely why the Pikmin wouldn't work.

Shigeru Miyamoto is well known for insisting on function and purpose in features and cameos, so the reasoning for the rejection of the Pikmin proposal is perhaps not surprising.

In the Pikmin games, you'll notice that all the Pikmin are very thin — tall and narrow for their frame. Mario enemies tend to be on the short and squat side and there's a functional reason for that. They're easier to stomp on. They're lower so you can get above them and broader so you can land on them. In that sense, Pikmin are just not well suited for the Mario universe.

With Donkey Kong also missing out, we had to content ourselves with the appearance of Yoshi and that wonderful flutter jump. What cameos, no matter how unrealistic, would you like to see in a Mario title?

[via gametrailers.com]

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User Comments (32)

DestinyMan

#1

DestinyMan said:

I would've liked to have seen Donkey Kong in the game. Cameos aren't really that big of a deal, I think, and they would only appear for a little while. I'm not surprised Miyamoto is a stickler for keeping function and purpose in check.

There were some models hidden in the data of the first Super Mario Galaxy that had a couple of characters from Donkey Kong Jungle Beat, such as the Party monkey and the spiked fish. That would mean that the developers had thought about including characters from other series before.

This reminds me of when there was a rumor swirling around that Sonic would appear in the game. Obviously, that was fake, and Miyamoto would've shot that down faster than a shooting star bit.

SkywardLink98

#2

SkywardLink98 said:

No function? doesn't Super Mario RPG, have Samus and Link in it, but they're just in a hotel room asleep? Where's the "function" in that?

Alienfish

#3

Alienfish said:

I've also heard how Miyamoto likes to explore and make discoveries or something like that. The Pikmin might not have been interactive characters, but they could have appeared scurrying through some bushes or flowers in the background. Donkey Kong could have been made into an entire stage in the style of the old arcade Donkey Kong game. There are a number of ways they could have implemented these two characters and more.

eviLaTtenDant

#4

eviLaTtenDant said:

I concur that cameos should feel special, not cheap. I wouldn't say they have to influence gameplay but at least they should do something funny instead of just standing there and look lost.
It would have been fun to see Olimar on a planet in Galaxy shocked by the abundance of enemies and asking help from Mario. The Pikmin could have slowed down enemies and have been shaken off when Mario defeats it. That would have been very neat. Maybe all they need to do this is HD and we'll see it on the WiiU ? :)
Donkey Kong could work well as a minion of Bowser in a world. As would Wart, Cackletta, Tatanga and other boss characters from the RPG's and Yoshi's Island imo. This all could give the gameplay more variety.
While i'd understand if they don't feature these it would make for perfect DLC imo.
PS: E.Gadd, Pauline and Daisy could be a great use as well.

theblackdragonAdmin

#5

theblackdragon said:

@SkywardLink: True, and remember the portraits in LoZ: OoT as well. They didn't have to be functional, they just had to be easter-egg like — look at people crapping themselves over the 'shadow people' in Shiverburn Galaxy, y'know? Imagine if they'd been the shapes of Pikmin instead, wouldn't that have been an amazing easter egg to spot?

i still remember when i stumbled across both Samus and Link in SMRPG — there were no guides back then, so I couldn't use one to help me; i had to do all my exploring on my own. discovering little things like that, it really made me feel more accomplished as a gamer. those are the achievements we had back in the day, and to be honest that's the kind of thing I'd like to see from Nintendo.

ThomasBW84Admin

#6

ThomasBW84 said:

Good points, though I'd say Easter Egg-style images are a different ball-game to characters actually being involved in the gameplay, which is what Hayashida was talking about.

DestinyMan

#7

DestinyMan said:

In Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour, Pikmin would pop out of a bush if the golf ball hit it in a certain way. Little appearances like that add a nice touch, and cameos don't need to be elaborate affairs with the character having to be a talking NPC that is a part of a game mission.

I like those little touches, such as the Mario portrait in Legend of Zelda: A Link to the Past. Link's Awakening was jam-packed with cameos. The Octoombas of the Super Mario Galaxy games are a reference to the Octoroks of the Zelda series, and then you've got Kid Icarus and its Metroid-like enemies. There's always some sort of cameo in each Nintendo game. Cameos can add a lot of charm if done right.

Whopper744

#8

Whopper744 said:

I guess it can sort of take away from feeling like you are really in Mario's world if Pikmin randomly show up in it. I don't know.
I know they did make a cameo in Mario Golf: Toadstool Tour though, when you would hit balls in the tall grass or flowers I think.

eviLaTtenDant

#10

eviLaTtenDant said:

It would also be hilarious if the Pikmin first tried to attack Mario. Olimar pipes 'em back, Mario shakes 'em off and they work together from there on.

PixelatedPixie

#11

PixelatedPixie said:

As much as I hate Yoshi, I have to say he was utilised well in Galaxy 2.

I think a Wario cameo would be pretty cool. It would be cool if Wario was a sort of returning antagonist throughout a Mario game similar to Shadow Mario/Bowser Jr. in Sunshine. He could maybe be on his own greedy adventure which crosses paths with Mario's at certain points.

metafaniel

#13

metafaniel said:

They really should use much more Daisy in anything they want! She's just used in spin-offs and nothing more... He hasn't been used or referenced in the story since her very first appearance. She has potential to even be playable as she is, she deserves to be protagonist in main games, as main character or a support character. I wish they take in consideration Daisy much more in the future ;)

WingedSnagret

#15

WingedSnagret said:

I remember when I first saw Mr. Game & Watch in Donkey Kong Country Returns; that was awesome. As for cameos in Mario's world, I'd like to see Monoeyes from the Kid Icarus series. They would swoop down low and Mario would have to time his jumps to stomp them (or of course just fireball them). I mean after all, there are Goomba-like enemies in Pit's world, (and not to mention Metroids) so why not?

Capt_N

#17

Capt_N said:

@metafaniel I was gonna make a topic about that some time ago, but I never got around to it. It is somewhat sad to say that Rosalina has only been around for a few years, & has already been in Mario canon longer than Daisy(introduced 1989), since Daisy isn't even in Mario canon, still. Neither is Tatanga, Wario, or Waluigi. Daisy/Tatanga/Wario are all from the meta-series Mario titles(The sub series Mario titles: SML/SML2/WL:SML3 ), not the main games, & I too, think Nintendo should put these particular characters into their main Mario series titles. Edit: The only problem posed by the inclusion of those characters is which character takes second fiddle, as villain/hero/damsel.

FonistofCruxis

#18

FonistofCruxis said:

Various other games games have had cameos that were just nice easter eggs like SMRPG, Zelda: OOT and DKCR and those cameos weren't exactly functional so I don't see what the problem would've been with these cameos. Also, with Miyamoto's argument, the Pikmin wouldn't have to be enemies and if they were Mario could just repel them with his spin attack. As for DK, they could have had a level with themes from his games with DK in the background maybe or as an NPC.

Punny

#21

Punny said:

If not the Pikmin, how about Olimar? He is short and squat like Mario. Plus, if you mix up his name and take out the "l," it spells "Mario."

StarDust4Ever

#22

StarDust4Ever said:

I think it would be cool in Mario could "pull a Kirby" and inhale his enemies. For example, inhale a hammer bro to throw hammers! :D

@Capt_N: Nintendo had the perfect opportunity to include all four of the plumbers, Mario, Luigi, Wario, and Waluigi in a real Mario game. That game was New Super Mario Brothers Wii, which featured 4-player simultaneous action. Wario could have been player 3, and Waluigi could have been player 4. If you recall, Wario was already featured as a side-kick in M64x4 DS. But instead of Wario and Waluigi, we get a very generic Blue and Yellow Toad. What a waste!

DestinyMan

#23

DestinyMan said:

@Capt_N: I wish Wario had a bigger role in mainstream Mario games. He might be from the Wario Land and WarioWare world, but he's playable in Super Mario 64 DS and he's been a major character in all the spin-offs. It'd be awesome to play him in a 2D Mario game.

sinalefa

#24

sinalefa said:

I have said it before and I will say it again. The day Waluigi appears in a main Mario game, that is the day I stop playing Mario games. He does not even show in the Warioware series, so that should tell people something.

If I am not mistaken, Olimar's Ship (Dolphin) appears in the background of one of the galaxies in SMG1, so they do have some cameos sometimes.

For me one of the best cameos is DK's appearance in Punch Out for Wii, since you can actually beat the crap out of him, in a more direct and satisfying way than any of the Mario Kart games. Not to mention he has more personality there than in all his previous games combined.

CowLaunch

#27

CowLaunch said:

I don't consider Donkey Kong a cameo, he's part of the Mario universe. There were a lot of cameo's in Link's Awakening, and it added charm.

StarDust4Ever

#28

StarDust4Ever said:

Speaking of Cameos, somewhere in Mario Galaxy 2, there is a PacMan made out of star-bits which is briefly visible before you warp to a new area. I forget which level it's in, but I have seen it. They claimed it was sposed to be a chain chomp, but it looked like PacMan to me.

hillbill26

#31

hillbill26 said:

It would've been boss to see at least on of them on a planet. Plus, the skateboarding in Super Mario 3D Land would've made me buy it. but, unfortunatley, we won't see Olimar again until the Wii U game, and who knows how long until we see Donkey Kong again (not including Super Smash Bros. 4).

Poketendo

#32

Poketendo said:

Well, Brawl already made a combined game with all the characters, and it has a platform story mode, but i would like a REAL platformer, or maybe a combined game, with all major hitters. for example, for the platforming parts mario, then for the first person parts Samus, than for the multiman fights the pokémon trainer, that sort of stuff. That would be just great!

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