That’s the official statement from Nintendo, Gamestop, Target, Best Buy and everyone else. Fresh on the heels of Canadian Gamestop outlets breaking the street release last week, North American fans of the highly anticipated 3DS game have been calling stores and checking in with Gamefaqs’ Fire Emblem Awakening Board or Serenes Forest for the latest developments on the status of the game.
Fire Emblem Awakening (Fire Emblem 13: Kakusei in Japan) is the 6th Fire Emblem title released in North America and the 13th overall in the series. Awakening is the first 3DS entry for the series and first Fire Emblem game for North America in four years (Fire Emblem: Shadow Dragon in 2009). Shadow Dragon got a spinoff sequel released only in Japan in 2010 called Fire Emblem: Light and Shadow.
Awakening was supposed to be released on Monday, February 4 in North America but I’m talking about physical copies of the game. Digital copies of Awakening can still be downloaded from the eShop tomorrow (2GB free on SD Card) and this has actually led some people to believe Nintendo planned thedelay to boost eShop sales. True or not I have little doubt there are those who will defnitely take advantage of being able to download the game instead of trying to find a physical copy.
Then again, this leaves those who preordered the game or the game + handheld bundle in a bit of a bind: Gamestop offered a free ten page artbook to those who preordered the game with them. My understanding is the artbooks were shipped separately and thus were not effected by the delay. Even so, Nintendo promised February 4 as the release date. Regardless of weather you wanted a physical or digital copy of Awakening, fans and consumers will remember this. Overall Nintendo will survive but from a consumer’s perspective their credability to deliver took a hit.
From a gamer’s perspective this is unforgivable, more so given how much they hyped this game leading up to the release. The fact that Nintendo did not make a statement in advance tells me my not buying the Wii U was the right decision. For those who may be wondering yes I did preorder the game from Gamestop. I can afford to buy a digital copy but I see no reason to do that given I already preordered the game in full including tax. I went to the Gamestop where i did the preorder today where they confirmed the delay. The first shipment is not expected to arrive until Tuesday at the earliest or Friday the latest.
The funny thing is I bought a physical copy of Civilization V + Gods & Kings from Amazon on Friday and they’re expected to arrive tomorrow. At the very least I will be getting SOMETHING I paid for tomorrow! Speaking of Civ V I bought a digital version via Steam. Both of my machines are high-end so I’ve been able to confirm the “Must be connected to the internet” requirement is the reason the game is laggy. I will be uninstalling the Steam version right after I finish publishing this blog so…yeah.