From what I can see, all four captains are new characters (though if I'm not mistaken, Olimar's wife and son are two of them). I really hope they pull a Pikmin 2 on us and pull a character switcheroo later in the game. I want Olimar and Louie back!
Miyamoto implied that Olimar's absence is tied to the story, though.
He did?! Awesome. That's all I needed to hear. I'll have to watch that part of the conference again.
As long as Olimar is part of the story and not shoved aside for some half-assed reason, I'm A-OK.
He says "You may notice Captain Olimar is not among them. The reason for that is a secret." If that's not an admission that Olimar will appear in the game in some context (and presumably an important story-related context, otherwise why would it be a secret?) then I don't know what is.
It's a secret because Louie ate him, and the President, then he took over the planet.
It's a secret to everybody.
I'm just kidding, but since they pointed out that he was missing, and that it was a secret why he was missing then it's obviously something important, and we will probably get to use him later in the game like Pikmin 2.
"Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13"