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3DS

8-Bit Summer Solves Most of My Issues with North American eShop

by Neal Ronaghan - June 25, 2012, 8:26 pm PDT
Total comments: 11

We have solidified release dates for Kirby's Pinball Land, Wario Land, and more a month in advance.

Nintendo of America dropped some Virtual Console knowledge during last week's Nintendo Direct: during the month of July, every week will feature two Virtual Console releases. Hell, they even gave release dates for six games!

That's right. The company that released two 3DS Virtual Console games in the first five months of the year is promising 10 in one month. In case you missed it, here's the list of games coming out:

  • The Legend of Zelda (NES) - July 5
  • Kirby's Pinball Land - July 12
  • The Sword of Hope II - July 12
  • Kid Icarus: Of Myths and Monsters - July 19
  • Tumblepop - July 19
  • Wario Land: Super Mario Land 3 - July 26
  • Sonic Blast
  • Sonic Labyrinth

It truly is a wonderful thing to see a release slate for the eShop, especially Virtual Console. The majority of my personal beef with the eShop is that the silence usually hints at one of two things: that no one gives a crap, or that something wonderful is brewing. Unfortunately, the former is the predominant thought among most fans.

Nintendo of America's 8-Bit Summer makes this hollow guessing game a non-issue. We know that The Sword of Hope II is hitting on July 12. We know that, after months of waiting, Wario Land is coming on July 26. Do we all want these games yesterday? Of course, but knowing that they are coming makes everything a lot better.

I have no problem with waiting; I just want to make sure I'm waiting for something worthwhile. I hope that this kind of planned schedule is a recurring thing and not a one-time deal. Still, I'm glad that 8-Bit Summer makes July more interesting, as if it needed it, with Theatrhythm, Rhythm Thief, Heroes of Ruin, and Kingdom Hearts 3D all coming out. It's a damn good time to own the 3DS, guys.

Also, in case you were wondering what The Sword of Hope II is (I was). It's a Kemco-made Game Boy RPG that came out in Japan in 1992 (and 3DS VC earlier this year) and only made it to North America in 1996. It's a super old-school RPG that has more in common with Dragon Quest and Shadowgate than Final Fantasy. Apparently for an old school RPG on the Game Boy, it's pretty good.

Talkback

I'm very glad Nintendo is doing this event, along with the weekend sale of Super Mario Land. What I really want to see is this as a recurring, consistent thing. What concerns me is the possibility that the drought from earlier in the year was justified internally by plans to do this kind of blow-out down the line -- meaning the cycle could repeat. Mainly, I just want some evidence that Nintendo has a clear, long-term plan for making Virtual Console into a viable facet of the 3DS lineup. The recent announcements are a positive sign, but there's still far to go toward that dream.

monkatJune 25, 2012

I appreciate the effort, and this is probably really cool for a lot of people, but none of these games really resonate with me. The only one that looked cool was Tumblepop, and I heard that it wasn't very good.

There's a bunch of platformers on the GB/GBC that look really cool and I'd love to play, but I think a lot of them are going to be missed due to licensing.

I do hope that people enjoy this though and that we don't send Nintendo the message of "Yeah, promotions are stupid. Don't do this or any other sales again." I want more virtual console, but I have a very particular taste--totally used to not getting what I want in the gaming world.

OblivionJune 25, 2012

We shouldn't need a special event to get two games every week. Just freaking give it to us.

red14June 25, 2012

Still waitin on the possibility of a Dragon Warrior Monsters or Pokemon Red/Blue release over here...

leahsdadJune 25, 2012

I think that if they do the marketing on this the right way (oh, dear, I hope they do it the right way...) then this might be the answer to our prayers.  If the sale results in better numbers for NOA, and the whole promotion works out well for them, then they might be more inclined to do this more often and more regularly.

I'm not, however, advocating that you buy all of these  games just in the vague hope they they'll release the game you really want in the future.  I think if they do the marketing on this right, then everything should come up roses.  Either that, or their reticence this year was completely justified, and the market just isn't there.

Pixelated PixiesJune 26, 2012

I'm kind of bummed that we don't have an equivalent in Europe. Admittedly, arguably the best of those games have already been released on the Euro eShop, but still. It'd be nice to have a similar promotion.

ejamerJune 26, 2012


I'm glad that the games are coming, and very glad that Nintendo chose to grace us with names and dates instead of just expecting fans to sit through the month without knowing what is coming or when.

But a Virtual Console feast now doesn't make up for months of famine earlier. Worse, it makes me skeptical that we'll see anything except these Virtual Console releases - creating a drought of new 3DS eShop software - because I have no faith that Nintendo will cater to more than one market at a time.

Quote from: Pixelated

I'm kind of bummed that we don't have an equivalent in Europe. Admittedly, arguably the best of those games have already been released on the Euro eShop, but still. It'd be nice to have a similar promotion.

Europe has an awesome set of sales going over the summer, and has had the best of the listed Virtual Console games available for months already. That doesn't help build much excited if you already own the games though. 


Hopefully you guys will get some of the eShop software that has been missing though, bringing the regions closer to parity.

This is very good news, but I expect this to be a binge-and-purge thing.  I expect a complete dry spell following this, or at best going back to a trickle of games.

But I am very happy about WarioLand showing up soon.

TeaHeeJune 26, 2012

I'd like to see them start to mix in more GBC and, yes, GBA games instead of just 8 bit games.

leahsdadJune 26, 2012

Quote from: TeaHee

I'd like to see them start to mix in more GBC and, yes, GBA games instead of just 8 bit games.

GBA games?  Don't hold your breath....

greybrickNathan Mustafa, Staff AlumnusJune 28, 2012

Quote:

Still waitin on the possibility of a Dragon Warrior Monsters or Pokemon Red/Blue release over here...

Better yet, they can send the 3D remake our way!

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