UPDATE: Dragon Quest's The Hero will launch in Europe tomorrow, July 31.
An announcement from a video presentation hosted by series director and creator Masahiro Sakurai revealed earlier that Super Smash Bros. Ultimate's Dragon Quest fighter will be added to the game later today. The long-rumored addition to the roster was confirmed earlier this year, but the release date of the fighter was something that was still up in the air heading into the presentation, which was tagged as the likely spot to reveal Dragon Quest's The Hero launch date alongside a lengthy demonstration of the character's gameplay.
Smash Ultimate will also be adding the upcoming Banjo-Kazooie to its roster at some point this year, fulfilling a long-time desire for many fans of the series to see the character added as a fighter. Smash Ultimate already boasted the largest roster the series has ever had before any of the DLC fighters were even announced, and since the game's initial launch, Smash Ultimate has added Piranha Plant, Persona 5's Joker, and Dragon Quest's The Hero later today. Banjo-Kazooie is next, and there are supposed to be six scheduled fighters for the game, which means two more announcements in Smash Ultimate's future.
Dragon Quest's The Hero was officially announced as joining the Smash Ultimate roster earlier during a video presentation that also detailed a few more details on a free software update that would add the character today. Sakurai announced the addition of an in-game online tourney mode, a Smash Ultimate Very Easy setting in the single-player adventure mode, and the ability to predict winners in Spectate mode to add some fun for those watching matches. Dragon Quest's The Hero will be available as a standalone Challenger Pack for $5.99 USD or as part of the Fighters Pass, which grants all DLC characters, for $24.99 USD.
It's tough to speculate on where Dragon Quest's The Hero will slot into the ever-evolving Smash Ultimate competitive meta, which has been in flux ever since the game released thanks to frequent updates that patch movesets and an incredibly large roster that will take years to really dive deep into and explore all the nuances of. With that said, the popular character will likely see a major uptick in play over the coming weeks thanks to his newness, so fans will quickly become acquainted with The Hero's viability in the online scene.
With Banjo-Kazooie on the horizon for Smash Ultimate, it looks like 2019 will be a year where the game buoys itself as one of the Switch's staple games thanks to constantly evolving content that keeps fans interested. It's a business model Nintendo rarely employs the way other publishers do, but with Smash Ultimate, each character addition is so headline-worthy that it would make sense to seriously consider another batch of DLC fighters for 2020 and beyond should the game continue to sell well.