Nintendo Has 'No Plans' to Publish Xenoblade In North America, But Hey, Thanks for Asking

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Posted by Alex (1934 posts) -

Perhaps you are already aware of Operation Rainfall. If not, a brief overview.

Not for American consumption.

Nintendo currently doesn't have much on its plate as far as upcoming Wii releases go. In fact, apart from Skyward Sword, Kirby, and Rhythm Heaven, it's safe to say that Nintendo has almost nothing on its plate as far as Wii releases go, leaving some Wii owners wondering when they may have another opportunity to dust off their little white boxes and play some damn games.

But wait, new contenders have entered the field!

As it happens, Nintendo has a trio of exclusive RPGs all currently set for Japanese release: Monolith's Xenoblade Chronicles, Mistwalker's The Last Story, and Ganbarion's Pandora's Tower. Xenoblade and The Last Story are both set for European release as well, meaning that at some point, someone's going to have to translate those games into the English language. However, as of this past E3, Nintendo had made it clear that it had no intention of selling any of these games in North America.

This has led a group of concerned Nintendizens to take up a campaign (the aforementioned Operation Rainfall) to convince Nintendo to release any and/or all of these titles here, to help ensure that North American Wii owners would not be left wanting. Letters were written, YouTube videos were made, Facebook pages were created, and eventually, Nintendo took notice, promising an update in the near future on the requested titles.

That update came last night, and, uh... well, why don't you just read for yourself?

== TEASER ==

"Thank you for your enthusiasm. We promised an update, so here it is. We never say “never,” but we can confirm that there are no plans to bring these three games to the Americas at this time. Thanks so much for your passion, and for being such great fans!"

In other words, "Nope! Run along now!"

While this statement does leave a slight sliver of hope that Nintendo might change its mind somewhere down the road, as it has in the past with other products it originally had "no plans" to release in North America (the black Wii, anyone?), the announcement is nonetheless discouraging for Wii fans who have been aching for some new, interesting games to play on their console of choice. Evidently the Operation Rainfall campaign will continue, but at this point it all seems rather moot. Nintendo knows people are interested. If they're gonna announce these games for North American release, they will choose to do so in their own sweet time. When has Nintendo ever done any differently?

In the meantime, feel free to take solace in the few Wii releases that are coming up in the next few months. I know I plan to run out and pre-order the Wii-exclusive Smurfs Dance Party as soon as I finish typing this sentence.

Staff
#1 Posted by Alex (1934 posts) -

Perhaps you are already aware of Operation Rainfall. If not, a brief overview.

Not for American consumption.

Nintendo currently doesn't have much on its plate as far as upcoming Wii releases go. In fact, apart from Skyward Sword, Kirby, and Rhythm Heaven, it's safe to say that Nintendo has almost nothing on its plate as far as Wii releases go, leaving some Wii owners wondering when they may have another opportunity to dust off their little white boxes and play some damn games.

But wait, new contenders have entered the field!

As it happens, Nintendo has a trio of exclusive RPGs all currently set for Japanese release: Monolith's Xenoblade Chronicles, Mistwalker's The Last Story, and Ganbarion's Pandora's Tower. Xenoblade and The Last Story are both set for European release as well, meaning that at some point, someone's going to have to translate those games into the English language. However, as of this past E3, Nintendo had made it clear that it had no intention of selling any of these games in North America.

This has led a group of concerned Nintendizens to take up a campaign (the aforementioned Operation Rainfall) to convince Nintendo to release any and/or all of these titles here, to help ensure that North American Wii owners would not be left wanting. Letters were written, YouTube videos were made, Facebook pages were created, and eventually, Nintendo took notice, promising an update in the near future on the requested titles.

That update came last night, and, uh... well, why don't you just read for yourself?

== TEASER ==

"Thank you for your enthusiasm. We promised an update, so here it is. We never say “never,” but we can confirm that there are no plans to bring these three games to the Americas at this time. Thanks so much for your passion, and for being such great fans!"

In other words, "Nope! Run along now!"

While this statement does leave a slight sliver of hope that Nintendo might change its mind somewhere down the road, as it has in the past with other products it originally had "no plans" to release in North America (the black Wii, anyone?), the announcement is nonetheless discouraging for Wii fans who have been aching for some new, interesting games to play on their console of choice. Evidently the Operation Rainfall campaign will continue, but at this point it all seems rather moot. Nintendo knows people are interested. If they're gonna announce these games for North American release, they will choose to do so in their own sweet time. When has Nintendo ever done any differently?

In the meantime, feel free to take solace in the few Wii releases that are coming up in the next few months. I know I plan to run out and pre-order the Wii-exclusive Smurfs Dance Party as soon as I finish typing this sentence.

Staff
#2 Posted by dragonzord (811 posts) -

'We want the core gamer back. You want Xenoblade? No, not that core gamer. We want some of those CoDbucks'

#3 Posted by SeriouslyNow (8534 posts) -

Project Rainfail.

#4 Posted by Zippedbinders (983 posts) -
Goddammit.
#5 Posted by Wikitoups (768 posts) -

Kinda sucks that it's not coming to north america but I don't really see alot of success of them comming here, maybe if the sales go up in Europe Nintendo will change their minds.

#6 Posted by stokerd (48 posts) -

Awww....

#7 Posted by qxz86 (10 posts) -

I really don't understand this. 
 
Why let the Wii wither on the critical vine?

#8 Posted by SlightConfuse (3963 posts) -

Shame these games look cool. But i sold my wii a long time ago

#9 Posted by BabyChooChoo (4245 posts) -
@zoner said:

'We want the core gamer back. You want Xenoblade? No, not that core gamer. We want some of those CoDbucks'

Haha, exactly.
#10 Posted by SixtyXCelph (211 posts) -

God damn it, Nintendo... all I really want is some great RPG's for my Wii.  Just a few, please.  If I could play them with a Classic or Gamecube controller, so much the better, but at this point I'll even play it with your damned Wii remote.  Just... come on.

#11 Posted by ArbitraryWater (11417 posts) -

Unfortunate. Who is going to fulfill all those Xenoblade preorders on Amazon now? Oh well. If you want it so bad, import it.

#12 Posted by Count_Zero (301 posts) -

Not to mention - part of the thing with Operation Rainfall is pre-ordering the fucking game on Amazon. In other words, they are backing their words with money. Nintendo, in a move that's bizarre for any company, publicly traded or otherwise, is turning around and walking away from that money. What kind of company turns around and walks away from relatively easy money?

#13 Posted by BeachThunder (11635 posts) -

I still haven't come to terms with the fact that Mother 3 will probably never get an official English release =(

Online
#14 Posted by sterbacblu (231 posts) -

Glad to see some coverage on Giant Bomb about this issue. I've been playing Xenoblade for about a week now and it's really a shame it's not coming out in North America. If anything it showed that a group of people were trying to do the right thing and play this game for their respective region, but now all this does is encourage thousands of Wii owners to mod their consoles.

#15 Posted by dragonzord (811 posts) -

@BeachThunder said:

I still haven't come to terms with the fact that Mother 3 will probably never get an official English release =(

The sad part is that Atlus practically begged Nintendo to let them do it

#16 Posted by mrangryface (774 posts) -

Why release it now when they can make it A HIT RELEASE OF A JAPANESE CLASSIC FOR THE Wii U?

haha oh Nintendo; i've read your book etc..

#17 Posted by Slaker117 (4835 posts) -
@Count_Zero said:

Not to mention - part of the thing with Operation Rainfall is pre-ordering the fucking game on Amazon. In other words, they are backing their words with money. Nintendo, in a move that's bizarre for any company, publicly traded or otherwise, is turning around and walking away from that money. What kind of company turns around and walks away from relatively easy money?

While putting money on the table is a good way to show you're serious, I'm sure Nintendo has spreadsheets to show it just isn't worth it. It's unfortunate, but that's business.
#18 Posted by dragonzord (811 posts) -

@Slaker117 said:

@Count_Zero said:

Not to mention - part of the thing with Operation Rainfall is pre-ordering the fucking game on Amazon. In other words, they are backing their words with money. Nintendo, in a move that's bizarre for any company, publicly traded or otherwise, is turning around and walking away from that money. What kind of company turns around and walks away from relatively easy money?

While putting money on the table is a good way to show you're serious, I'm sure Nintendo has spreadsheets to show it just isn't worth it. It's unfortunate, but that's business.

But there are other companies that are willing to do it for them. The English is already done. They would only benefit.

#19 Posted by RE_Player1 (7544 posts) -

@zoner said:

@BeachThunder said:

I still haven't come to terms with the fact that Mother 3 will probably never get an official English release =(

The sad part is that Atlus practically begged Nintendo to let them do it

Really? If so I love Atlus more than I already do.

#20 Posted by Vortextk (418 posts) -
@zoner said:

@BeachThunder said:

I still haven't come to terms with the fact that Mother 3 will probably never get an official English release =(

The sad part is that Atlus practically begged Nintendo to let them do it

I'm sure this is similar for those kinds of companies. "Oh there's this game, made by some guy called hironobu saka whatever, you know. He did something called final fantasy, I'm not sure, supposedly an old game, couple of little sequels were made to it. No one really knows him, but maybe he has an idea of what he's doing, meh"
 
Nintendo is just kind of pathetic. Core games for the wii-u? You mean ports of what will then be old games? You mean first party franchises, 80% of which are catering to my grandma? You mean japanese only releases that are great looking games? Yeah. Lots of core games.
#21 Posted by Rolyatkcinmai (2682 posts) -

Nintendo sucks.

Really, they do.

Remember when Nintendo was awesome?

#22 Posted by robit (2 posts) -

Wow this made me realize I haven't played an actual RPG on the Wii... jesus the Wii sucks. I would love these to be released in the US, it would give me an actual use to play my Wii.

#23 Posted by PolygonSlayer (419 posts) -

It sucks, but at least there are English version of those games coming so just import, that's what us Europeans had to do back in the 90s with the RPGs on the SNES and some PS1 games :)

#24 Posted by drew327 (557 posts) -

Wow, yeah! It just kind of hit me the emptiness that is Nintendo's Fall '11, and the hype that I would have if any or all of these 3 were coming out this year here! If they want the core, look no further big N, Hello!!

#25 Posted by dragonzord (811 posts) -

@PolygonSlayer said:

It sucks, but at least there are English version of those games coming so just import, that's what us Europeans had to do back in the 90s with the RPGs on the SNES and some PS1 games :)

It was bullshit then; it's bullshit now.

#27 Posted by Slaker117 (4835 posts) -
@zoner: Well that certainly seems bizarre. In that case I can't really think of a good reason to not release it if another company is willing to take the brunt of the risk. Probably just slow moving corporate management that no one wants to interrupt for something with smaller returns.
#28 Posted by PrinceLeon (30 posts) -

It amazes me that Nintendo of America doesn't want our money. We demand good games and get a "lol no" in return? Ridiculous.

#29 Posted by avidwriter (667 posts) -

So they're already jumping ship for the Wii U? How do they expect people to buy the Wii U if they are showing they don't give a shit about their previous console?

#30 Posted by HydraHam (1338 posts) -

And this is why i don't own a Wii yet and never will, these 3 games are the reason i want a Wii.

They don't have to do english voice-overs, sub them and translate the text into english, what would that cost them? next to nothing, what do they have to lose? nothing, wii made a bajillion dollars

#31 Posted by Clubvodka (410 posts) -
@SeriouslyNow: I'm glad you went there, I don't want to risk the ire of the internet. 
#32 Edited by Lobst (151 posts) -

Publishers like Atlus and XSeed are proof that games like these can be localized at a profit. Instead of satisfying their fans -- or handing these games off to one of those companies so they can be localized, letting Westerners play these games -- Nintendo instead prefers to lock this content down and withholding it from people who want to play it.

And Nintendo wonders why they have such trouble connecting to the "core". :|

#33 Posted by SpudBug (633 posts) -

Nintendo of America has been making stupid decisions for years.

They're really high on that casual gamer dollar, and are completely ignorant that those people have likely moved on to the apple devices, where the casual games are just as crappy as they were on the wii, but they're only $1.

Nintendo would be smart to take these titles as an investment in their core market, keeping them interested in the platform and keeping nintendo on their mind until WiiU comes out.

Not localizing these games also has the negative effect that those who want them are going to import/mod, and modding your wii for importing is basically the same as modding your wii for piracy - who knows how many will be lead down that route because of nintendo's refusal to publish already localized, fan-demanded games..

#34 Posted by Yummylee (21203 posts) -

It's no worse than Namco and their reluctance to release 2/3's of their Tales series in Europe, or at the very least a year or two later.

Online
#35 Edited by TheHT (10796 posts) -

Of all the potential outcomes from this I wouldn't have expected a smug nah from Nintendo.

#36 Posted by Korne (625 posts) -

Is the wii region locked? I always thought Nintendo was notorious for doing region locks on their consoles.

#37 Posted by WinterSnowblind (7613 posts) -

This doesn't seem like such a big deal.. The Wii is very easy to mod and the game is being released in English in the UK and other European countries. Import the game and prove that there is a big enough audience for this type of thing.

Considering it's already being translated though, I really don't understand why they wouldn't just release it in the US, even if it were a limited thing.

#38 Posted by thetrin (131 posts) -
@Korne said:
Is the wii region locked? I always thought Nintendo was notorious for doing region locks on their consoles.
It is, but it's very very easy to bypass the region lock.
#39 Posted by PresidentOfJellybeans (300 posts) -

Could tell it was Alex by the title.

#40 Posted by AaronChance (141 posts) -

@TheHT said:

Of all the potential outcomes from this I wouldn't have expected a smug nah from Nintendo.

I'm guessing you really haven't been paying attention to Nintendo of America these past few years then.

#41 Posted by Video_Game_King (35800 posts) -
#42 Posted by Twisted_Scot (1174 posts) -

Looks like Nintendo have finally joined everyone else by being bored on Nintendo.

#43 Posted by Contro (2040 posts) -

Madness. 

I'm good though, I've pre ordered the UK bundle which includes a red Classic Controller Pro and some signed posters. 
 

#44 Posted by xxizzypop (577 posts) -

@PresidentOfJellybeans said:

Could tell it was Alex by the title.

You can always tell it's Alex by the title.

Anywho, this sucks. I don't even own a Wii and I'm kind of bummed about this. The Last Story looks kind of cool, and that's from someone who doesn't like playing JRPGs these days.

#45 Posted by VWGTI (1919 posts) -

This news is a bummer for sure. But the people losing their shit on GAF and various other gaming sites need to get a grip.

#46 Posted by ArclightBorealis (1563 posts) -

Expected it to end this way. This whole thing accomplished as much as any online petition would have. That is, nothing.

#47 Posted by spiralsin (156 posts) -

In this console generation, the JRPG is the one genre where the Wii could have gained an advantage over the PS3 and Xbox 360. They are sorely lacking on those platforms. So what does Nintendo of America do? They squander it. Really disappointing, Reggie. Also, I applaud Operation Rainfall for its efforts.

#48 Posted by Vortextk (418 posts) -
#49 Posted by FateOfNever (1809 posts) -

This just seems like a real bad move on Nintendo's part.  Also, I sort of hope that Operation Rainfall doesn't give up.  I know that it probably won't accomplish anything, but, if they could continue to stress to Nintendo "You guys are making a huge mistake" who knows, they might actually learn something from all of this.  That or they'll lose a lot of initial support for the Wii U.

#50 Posted by gorkamorkaorka (442 posts) -

I'm tired of having to polish their turds

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