Is Killer Instinct Making a Comeback?

By Mike Andronico , Updated May 22, 2013 07:36 PM EDT

While the cult favorite fighting game Killer Instinct has been dormant since its days on the Nintendo 64, a recent Microsoft comment suggests that the beloved brawler could be making a comeback.

According to Polygon, Microsoft's Phil Spencer noted that a legendary Rare franchise will be revitalized for the Xbox One generation.

"That historic IP that they've built I think can play a real important role on Xbox One," Spencer tells Polygon.

While Rare was once a Nintendo-exclusive development studio, they were purchased by Microsoft in 2002 and have since delivered games such a Kameo and Viva Piñata and ported over classics like Banjo Kazooie.

Nothing has been confirmed my Microsoft or Rare regarding Killer Instinct, but bringing the title to Xbox One would make a whole lot of sense for all parties involved. Fans have been clamoring for a new Killer Instinct since the series' second installment, and the fighter's formula is long due for an update.

Releasing a new Killer Instinct would also capitalize on the red-hot resurgence of fighting games that started with 2009's Street Fighter 4. Fighters are taking a bigger spotlight than ever thanks to massive tournaments that are streamed to the world, and the fact that WB Games' Injustice: Gods Among Us was able to top the sales charts shows just how much momentum is behind the genre. Major fighting games are typically available on both Playstation and Xbox, so Microsoft would strike a huge blow in the console wars by bringing back an IP that they have exclusive rights to.

The announcement of Killer Instinct at E3 would certainly make a big splash for fighting diehards and nostalgic gamers alike. Sure, Microsoft has plenty of Rare titles to choose from for Xbox One, but few are in need of a next-gen update like Killer Instinct. Are you eager for the potential return of this cult combat game?

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