When Shigeru Miyamoto took to the stage at Ubisoft’s E3 2018 presentation, fans new something special was coming. While Starlink: Battle for Atlas was an expected addition to the show’s lineup, the inclusion of Star Fox within that in-game universe was not. Despite Nintendo and Ubisoft proving themselves successful collaborates in the past, this wasn’t an expected partnership, and it left Switch owners interested in purchasing Starlink with a very solid exclusive roster addition to encourage them to try out Ubisoft’s upcoming toys-to-life title.
Fox McCloud and his compatriots will be fully integrated into the game, and this means gamers should expect far more than a cameo experience: the voice actors from Star Fox Zero have retained their character roles, bringing plenty of authentic dialogue and barrel rolls to the table. The group have a valid reason to be in Atlas, and will have dedicated missions within their own storyline. Given that the Nintendo Switch has yet to see a full Star Fox release, he and his team’s appearance in Starlink will be his first at-bat in the current console generation ahead of Super Smash Bros Ultimate.
Game Rant recently got to go hands-on with Fox McCloud, so fans can now take an in-depth look through roughly 20 minutes of Star Fox-heavy cutscenes and gameplay from Starlink: Battle for Atlas below:
As the above video shows, Fox’s chance encounter with the main protagonists blends the Star Fox property into the main storyline, so Nintendo fans should expect plenty of cutscenes throughout he main game to feature the iconic team. That being said, producer Matthew Rose promised that the main storyline won’t be dramatically shifted by Star Fox‘s inclusion – but, much like Javik in Mass Effect 3, he’s likely to enhance the experience.
A large part of Ubisoft Toronto’s toys-to-life title is the ability for friends to lend peripherals to eachother, and Star Fox will be no different in this regard: once scanned, he and his arwing will be playable for 7 days on the Nintendo Switch. This means friends can effectively give eachother free trials of certain ships, weapons, or pilots, with Star Fox likely to be the most popular. Of course, he’ll only work on the Nintendo Switch edition of the game, so PS4 and Xbox One players will have to stick with the regular roster of characters. To that end, this is something that Ubisoft intends to expand post-launch, too.
Rose estimated that the campaign experience of Starlink will take gamers about a full day of playtime to complete, and that’s assuming that they don’t get entirely sidetracked by the metagame of keeping The Forgotten Legion at bay. Ubisoft Toronto has crafted a galaxy full of allies, enemies, and natural wildlife, and they will all continue simulating regardless of where players are. This means that if players idle in space, the Forgotten Legion will be slowly taking over outposts and planets, and will have to be pushed back. Luckily, pushing back intergalactic threats happens to be Fox McCloud’s specialty.
Starlink: Battle for Atlas will release on October 16, 2018 for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, and Xbox One.