Nintendo Wii U could get Mario Kart AND Smash Bros. by next spring

Nintendo Germany boss suggests both Mario Kart 8 and the new Smash Bros. are on the way for next spring; company declines to comment.

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The Internet is buzzing today with speculation about the release dates for a pair of high-profile Wii U games after Nintendo Germany general manager Bernd Fakesch was quoted by Neckar-Chronik as saying Mario Kart 8 and Super Smash Bros. are to be released this spring.

We already knew Mario Kart 8 was planned for spring 2014, but the date is new for the Super Smash Bros. title, which will also see release on 3DS. We reached out to the Mario maker for comment on the story, but were told, "Nintendo has nothing to announce at this time."

According to Fakesch, the spring 2014 date for the new Smash Bros. game pertains only to the Wii U version, not the 3DS iteration.

The Mario Kart and Smash Bros. franchises are two of Nintendo's biggest properties. Last generation, Mario Kart Wii was the top-selling non-bundled Wii software, moving 34.26 million copies. Meanwhile, Super Smash Bros. Brawl sold 11.49 million copies, making it the system's eight-biggest game.

Both franchises are generally seen as system-movers. And releasing both heavy-hitters during the same quarter would conceivably give the Wii U platform the shot in the arm it will need to help the console sell 9 million units by the end of March as Nintendo has previously forecast.

Mario Kart 8 was playable at E3 2013 and Nintendo has released numerous gameplay videos for the upcoming racing game. However, the developer has been far less forthcoming for the new Smash Bros. game.

While we have seen a few cinematic trailers, Nintendo has yet to reveal any gameplay from the project outside of a video demonstration from E3 2013. The new Smash Bros. game is currently in development at Sora Ltd. in partnership with SoulCalibur series studio Namco Bandai.

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