One of the biggest surprises of E3 was Mario+Rabbids: Kingdom Battle, the Mario and Rabbids themed SRPG that looks like a crossover of crazy proportions. It’s a big surprise not because no one expected it – just about everything to do with it had been leaked ahead of time – but because of how amazingly great the game ended up looking in action once we got to see it.

Mario+Rabbids has gone on to be the most nominated game of the Best of E3 awards (tied with Shadow of War), so suffice it to say, people are excited about it. One of those people includes XCOM 2’s creative director Jake Solomon, who, rather than being competitive about the game, seems to be positively thrilled with it.

“It was really cool to see,” Solomon said to Game Informer. “I started getting all these tweets, and so I went and watched the gameplay video of it. At one point they say something like, ‘And at this point Luigi has entered half cover,’ and I was like, ‘What world am I in?’”

“I feel honored to be curating [these mechanics] for the audience,” Solomon said. “… I think that to me it’s cool. And if they do something great, I’ll steal it … anything good you do. … It’s not a zero sum game. Especially not in the genre that I design in. The rising tide and all that. I think that there’s an underserved audience. It’s going to generate more fans and it’s going to come up with new ideas.”

He went on to note that if he had known a game like this – a game where Mario and gang are toting guns of all things – was possible, he would have pitched it to Nintendo a long time ago.

“If I had know we could have done that, I would have pitched that to Nintendo a long time ago!” he laughed.

Mario+Rabbids: Kingdom Battle will launch exclusively on the Nintendo Switch in August.