Among all of the surprise announcements at the Game Awards, this is one of the more unexpected ones. Joker, the protagonist from Persona 5, has been revealed as the first fighter in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s Challenger Pack 1.
The reveal trailer didn’t show any footage of Joker’s moveset, but featured fun voice cameos from Joker’s fellow Phantom Thieves as they discuss Joker’s appearance in Smash Bros.
Joker is the codename of the teenage protagonist of Persona 5, a life sim/dungeon-crawler/RPG for the PS4 released in 2017. Along with his teammates, the Phantom Thieves of Hearts, he travels to strange dungeons formed from peoples’ hearts. However, the player must also manage Joker’s time when not fighting strange interdimensional creatures, such as going on dates or levelling up stats by doing homework.
Joker hasn’t been in a 2D fighting game before (although he is no stranger to rhythm games for some reason), but other characters from the universe featured in Persona 4 Arena, a fighting game based on Persona 4.
Notably, Joker isn’t really a Nintendo character; his debut game, Persona 5, was a PS4 exclusive. The closest thing Joker has come to being in a Nintendo game is Persona Q2: New Cinema Labyrinth, a Persona-themed Etrian Odyssey spin-off for the 3DS.
There is precedent for this; Cloud Strife’s home game, Final Fantasy VII, was also never released on a Nintendo console (unless you count next year on the Nintendo Switch). Furthermore, maybe this is just a roundabout way of announcing a Switch port of Persona 5. It probably won’t be, but we can always hope.
Regardless, he should still be an excellent addition to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate’s massive roster of fighters. Joker can be purchased individually, or bought as part of Ultimate Challenger Pack 1.
We don’t have a release date for when the DLC fighters will be available, but it will likely be next year.