Last week, Nintendo stunned the world by killing off Luigi during its Super Smash Bros. Direct. Now, some fans think the shock death of Mario's brother was actually a clue pointing to Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's under-wraps secret mode.
In the same broadcast last week, Smash Bros. boss Masahiro Sakurai showed off Ultimate's main menu, where the icon for a major mode was blurred out pending its reveal at a later date.
Fans reckon they have pieced together the mode's blurred out icon by peering into the video's pixelation frame-by-frame and then piecing together the unpixelated areas. It's a remarkable effort, undertaken by Twitter user noctulescent.
Here's a mockup of what the menu would look like, from reddit user Nintendrew:
So what does this all have to do with Luigi's brutal end?
Well, the plumber's demise at the bony hands of Castlevania's Death and his scythe - a fate left unresolved at the end of the broadcast - was only the latest in a series of reveals which have offed other fan favourites. Mario and Mega-Man seemingly met their makers in the E3 2018 reveal video for Ridley.
Various threads on reddit are speculating that these deaths are pointing to the gameplay within Spirits, and possibly some kind of mode where you have to recruit the game's roster of characters by helping their spirits back to life.
Smash Bros. games have traditionally featured a single-player mode of some kind, although the types of gameplay on offer have varied widely throughout the series. Smash Bros. 3DS had the dungeon crawling Smash Run, for example, while Smash Bros Brawl on Wii had a fully-fledged story campaign, Subspace Emissary. This time around, with the largest roster in series history, it feels likely Ultimate's single-player mode will show it off in some way.
Luigi's fate may lie in your hands, then.
Last week, even BBC News reported on Luigi's death, and the outpouring of fan upset it provoked. For its part, Nintendo has issued just the briefest bit of reassurance, via its UK multiplayer-focused Twitter account:
Luigi is okay— Nintendo UK VS (@NintendoUKVS) August 8, 2018
Eurogamer has asked Nintendo for an official comment on Luigi's current condition. Nintendo is yet to respond.