KYOTO, Japan — The cast of the Super Mario franchise is set to grow with the release of the upcoming title Super Mario Bros. Wonder, Nintendo revealed in a video posted on social media.
“It made sense to add a virtuous reflection of Waluigi,” said Shigeru Miyamoto, creator of the Super Mario series. “Wario and Waluigi are a pair, so why isn’t Mario part of a duo? The visual template is already there: one short and squat, the other tall and skinny. It was as though our work was already done for us.”
Some fans of the series expressed displeasure with the decision to add a new character.
“It’s just unnecessary,” said Shawn Poole, who said that he had been playing Super Mario games since the 1980s. “It’s like they’re adding a pointless character just because Wario has a brother. Even the name is so clunky. Luigi? I’ve heard it makes more sense in Japanese, but it doesn’t really scan in English. They just removed the ‘Wa.’ It’s not like Mario’s name is ‘Rio.’ Ultimately, it’s just a tacky stunt that cheapens a beloved, richly-drawn character.”
Charles Martinet, who recently stepped down from his role of voicing Waluigi and many other Super Mario characters, said that he had mixed feelings about the expansion of the Mario family.
“It’s always thrilling to see what Papa Miyamoto comes up with,” said Martinet, who peppered his speech with Mario catch-phrases. “Wahoo! I’m sure Luigi will be a delightful, colorful character that the fans will love — me most of all! At the same time, it’s bittersweet. Oh no! I’m very sad that I will never get the chance to help create a voice and personality for Luigi. Still, I’m excited to meet him along with the rest of the world this Fall! Mamma mia!”
At press time, Sega announced that they are developing a game based around a new character described as a less edgy version of their iconic mascot, Shadow the Hedgehog.