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WiiU

Things I Think I Think About Star Fox Zero's Delay

by Donald Theriault - September 18, 2015, 6:34 am PDT
Total comments: 6

Caution: Contains large quantities of Amiibo.

Seeing a Twitter direct message from Neal about Star Fox Zero's delay is a hell of a thing to wake up to.

Nintendo's announcement last night of the delay of Star Fox Zero to Q1 2016 is not without precedent. Recall that in 2013, Super Mario 3D World was moved up to the November slot as Donkey Kong Country: Tropical Freeze was moved to December, then February 2014. And it worked out pretty well critically, even if the sales weren't as strong as they could've been. But Tropical Freeze was held back because it was Nintendo's retail lineup for the Wii U in the first quarter of 2014; Star Fox Zero is being delayed for quality concerns.

In the short term – the rest of 2015 – Nintendo has some things to worry about. Star Fox Zero wasn't going to do Super Smash Bros Wii U or Mario Kart 8 numbers, but it had an outside shot to do 3D World launch numbers. It was the big holiday game, but now it looks like the gaps will be filled in with Animal Crossing: Amiibo Festival and Mario Tennis Ultra Smash. If Nintendo wants to move hardware this year though, they're going to have to bite the bullet. Ideally, there'd be a price drop across the board for the Wii U coming soon, especially since Sony signalled their intentions in Japan and Asia by dropping the PS4 price into Wii U territory. But in North America, if they're going to insist on selling the Wii U at $299.9x, they'll need to work with retailers to build in some aggressive offers. $50 gift cards, special system bundles, and heavy Amiibo pushing.

Nintendo is going to move a lot of hardware this holiday, but most of it is going to be at $13 each for Amiibo. If they want to increase the userbase of potential Amiibo owners, though, they need to lower the barrier to entry. The 3DS Amiibo Reader will help, but the easiest way to do it is to lower the price of both the Wii U and New 3DS. It seems the popular Amiibo will be reprinted in large quantities, as allegedly Toys R Us is getting 80,000 Villagers for the entire chain among others. So the toys will be there. Combine this with a new content push for Super Mario Maker and Splatoon, and some exciting content for Super Smash Bros Wii U, and the rest of the year will be tolerable even if the thought of going into Black Friday with a tennis game, a board game and a roguelike isn't the most appealing to me personally.

The delay of Star Fox Zero does mean that 2016 is filling out decently for the fans, though. With Star Fox Zero's delay we now have a 2016 confirmed lineup of Star Fox Zero, the SMT x FE project and Pokkén Tournament for the Wii U. That's good enough to run through E3, and some smaller Projects, Pikmin 4 and Zelda at the end of the year to launch alongside the new handheld would be a good final year of full support for the Wii U.

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Talkback

kokumakerSeptember 18, 2015

I'm 100% fine with the delay. Not only will it make for a better game, which I have always applauded Nintendo for being so committed to putting the time and resources into, but the game and amiibo releases between now and December was already on the verge of breaking my bank account. This is now $60 that I can save long enough to send out of next year's tax return instead, and I'm all right with that.

Ian SaneSeptember 18, 2015

Quote from: kokumaker

the game and amiibo releases between now and December was already on the verge of breaking my bank account. This is now $60 that I can save long enough to send out of next year's tax return instead, and I'm all right with that.

I always find this logic odd.  If you don't have the money why not just wait to buy the game later when you can afford it?  You only have so much time to play games anyway and there is no point in buying multiple games at the same time if one of them is going to sit untouched for a little while.  It isn't like Star Fox Zero is going to be out-of-print three months after release.

StratosSeptember 18, 2015

I always felt that was the justification for special editions and bundles. I feel pressured to buy those games sooner because I want to be sure I get the best version or the package that includes some extra goodies. There is also the fear that physical copies could become scarce down the road so I want to hurry up in my purchasing of titles I think could become hard to find.

kokumakerSeptember 18, 2015

Nintendo is one of those few companies I prefer to support on day one, partially because I simply lkve their games and have since the '80s, and partially because the Wii U is a wonderful but criminally underloved console that deserves all the support it can get. But Xenoblade X alone should keep me more than busy until Star Fox rolls along, so waiting a few extra months for it doesn't seem bothersome at all.

As for buying multiple games within the same timeframe, I simply enjoy having choices. One night I might be up for a game that's tense and deeply involving; the next, I might more tired and in the mood for something that's easier to just pick up and play for a short time. I enjoy having some variety in my game library.

If Nintendo can finish it in time, they should put Xenoblade Chronicles X as the big Pre-Black Friday release. Nintendo needs to advertise the hell out of it and get people who normally wouldn't pick it up interested. I also would give the first Xenoblade Chronicles as a free Wii download to all people who pre-order. Two amazing RPGs for the price of one. In fact, Nintendo should throw in Earthbound and Earthbound Beginnings. Get every single Wii U owner to pick it up. DO THIS NINTENDO!!!! DO IT!!!!!

Also, I am happy they are delaying Star Fox. I don't think it would have had sales even close to Mario 3D World (especially with mediocre review scores). I also expect Star Fox to now get the magic May release date that Mario Kart 8 and Splatoon received.

KhushrenadaSeptember 18, 2015

Quote from: Ian

Quote from: kokumaker

the game and amiibo releases between now and December was already on the verge of breaking my bank account. This is now $60 that I can save long enough to send out of next year's tax return instead, and I'm all right with that.

I always find this logic odd.  If you don't have the money why not just wait to buy the game later when you can afford it?  You only have so much time to play games anyway and there is no point in buying multiple games at the same time if one of them is going to sit untouched for a little while.  It isn't like Star Fox Zero is going to be out-of-print three months after release.

Hey, you're the person who says you send a message with your money by what you buy and what you don't buy. He's just doing the same thing. By buying it and at full-price, he's showing that he's a fan of the game/genre/franchise. Buying it down the rode later at a lesser price is still a positive vote but it sends a mixed message as to why the purchase is made. That is why even though I will buy a lot of games at a reduced price or deal, there are a couple purchases I will make here and there at full price to give some show of support to a product. Money logic!

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