Unchained Blades Crawls To Nintendo eShop In January

By Ishaan . December 14, 2012 . 12:00pm

FuRyu’s dungeon RPG, Unchained Blades, has a release date on the Nintendo eShop. Xseed will publish the game as a Nintendo 3DS download title on January 3rd, 2013 for $29.99.


This makes Unchained Blades the first full-fledged download-only release for a retail game on the eShop. While other 3DS games such as Fractured Soul and Order Up were initially supposed to be released at retail, but were moved to the eShop at a lower price, Unchained Blades isn’t priced like an eShop game.


Xseed released Unchained Blades on the PSP earlier this year as well. You can read our playtest of the PSP version here.



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  • Junko Enoshima

    I can’t wait for this, as I love a good dungeon crawler! :)

  • MikeTxn

    I guess they will not change the monster’s “howl” during Judgment Battles?
    I had to mute the psp when I played them.

    January and February will be paradise to me.

  • Laith Rem

    Great news. I can finally play this one.

    Half a year later than I would with the PSP but still.

  • Neckbear

    Wow, seriously? $30?

    Thank you, but no thank you.

    • Digoth

      i’d easily pay $40 as a full retail game, but there’s no way i’m paying $30 for an eshop game.

      • Adrián Alucard

        It’s a retail game (in Japan XD)

        • landlock

          I’ve never understood this. If it’s a good game then surely it’s worth the money weather it’s a retail game or not.

          I’d happily pay that price (though I would get the PSP version). Hopefully Xseed bring it over to Europe eventually. Most of them come over in digital form in the end.

          • Vanadise

            Unfortunately, that’s not the case. Doing a physical release of a game requires a much larger up-front investment due to minimum product run sizes, plus it costs more per game due to the costs of manufacturing, packaging, design, and shipping, plus the physical retailers all take their cut, too.

            Profit margins at the same price are much slimmer, which means that you have to sell a lot more physical copies of a game to make a profit than you do with digital copies — and it’s entirely possible to not make a profit at all if the game doesn’t sell well and you end up having a ton of physical copies produced that nobody ever buys.

          • Lester Paredes

            Very true and very well put.

      • Suicunesol

        It’s a retail game made available on the eShop.

        This kind of mentality is going to severely limit what’s going to be available for the eShop in the future. People here shy away from cheap, downloadable games because of their low quality. But when a beefier, higher-quality game is made available for download, they still don’t bother because it’s downloadable, and downloadable games are naturally not worth more than xx amount of money.

        If people are not willing to set aside prejudice towards downloadable games, they can kiss other games like Senran Kagura for the eShop goodbye too since I’m sure Xseed is using games like this to test the eShop’s waters for download-only retail games.

        • Neckbear

          I wouldn’t call games like Sakura Samurai, Crashmo or Fractured Soul “low quality”. In fact, all the contrary; outside Fractured Soul’s length, all of them are better than some retail games.

          My issue with this pricing is just that I can’t see myself justifying $30 on the eShop just to buy this, when similar stuff like The Denpa Men is twenty bucks cheaper (!) and Etrian Odyssey, a much higher quality, retail game, will be available just a few weeks after UB releases.

          And I’m barely alone in this line of thought, I think most people will agree that $30 for a downloadable game is far too much. Especially one that’s like Unchained Blades. Cut it down by half and you’ll have much more people give it a try out of simple curiosity.

          • Suicunesol

            Oh yes! The games you listed (and more) are all very good and well worth their money. I wasn’t referring to them. What spurred me to make my comment was the fact that the previous poster assigned such a huge price difference between digital and physical copies of retail games, and that it would affect chances for future digital releases.

            BTW, I can’t see myself spending $30 on this game either. It just doesn’t look very good, it’s not from a studio with a good pedigree, and there are better games out there. But that’s besides the point. The other guy said he would gladly pay $10-20 more for the same game if it came in a dedicated cartridge, so it’s not the quality of the game that decided the price for him. It was medium in which it was made available.

            $30 for a downloadable game is too much? It is true that many people think so too. But that shouldn’t be the case, because whether it’s downloadable or retail, it’s the same game.

        • Digoth

          you lose so much power as a consumer by buying digitally. you can’t trade it. you can’t sell it. if your 3ds gets stolen, it’s pretty much gone.

          also, i like having a box and media. if xseed doesn’t want to provide that anymore, i’ll go elsewhere. (this is why i imported new little king’s story)

          • Arrei

            But with digital downloads, you can carry multiple games at once while carrying a different physical cart in your system. And a cart would be just as gone if the cart itself or your carrying case filled with carts is stolen, the use of which is necessary if you want to carry multiple games around.

          • Suicunesol

            If a box and instruction manual is worth $20 to you, well, you have your treasures. :P I used to collect video game boxes too.
            As for buying and selling, I can’t comment since I don’t sell games. I always keep them. I guess selling reselling retail games is important to many people?

            If your 3DS is stolen, like Arrei said, whatever game cartridge you had in it is gone. And if your game cartridges are lost, they’re gone for good.

            But, if you had downloaded the game, then you can download it again by linking to your Club Nintendo account. Actually, I don’t know if you can do this yet, but it’s in the cards.

          • AJ

            It really is about having ownership of your game. I like to trade my games with friends. Or give them away. Or sell them at EB or on CraigsList. Or I like to keep them and dust them off in 10 years time. Digital only allows you to keep a copy of the game for yourself. And from what I have observed on the PSN, the prices very seldom go down like they do with physical copies. So a 2 year old game will still be the MSRP for a brand new game, which…..just isn’t worth it.

            But in the end, people will vote with their wallets. I just hate to think we are being FORCED in a certain direction by companies.

            (Maybe I feel so strongly because I discovered a lot of great games by swapping with my friend in middle school. No, no one made money on that, but years later when I sought out the sequels to those games they sure as hell made money.)

          • Dmonik

            well if you don’t suck up and buy some games like this, especially from xseed who imports a lot of awesome jap titles!! then we will NEVER see a lot of the great Japanese titles that they likely have planned.. because if the first few don’t sell well then they just wont bother.

            I for one want to see Senran Kagura and other games like fantasy life and the biggest of all Bravely Default. but if too many people have that mentality then we will never get imports of them.. then I will have to go learn fucking Japanese just to play some awesome games :(

            this kind of thing will hurt the already declining list of imported jap games.. its getting worse all the time because of piracy and your precious used game trading… when you buy a used game the developer gets nothing because they already got the purchase the first time.. but your copy.. that’s 5 bucks less or whatever goes to waste basically. I am getting sick of shit when games such as Final Fantasy type 0 don’t even make it over.. its looking fucking grim as hell :'(

            WE are the ones who ultimately decide what games get translated and which don’t and we need to support these developers who are actually putting in the work and localizing these awesome games.. complaining about something as trivial as a box that has no meaning except to sit on a shelf… would you rather have these games in a box or not have them at all seems like a no brainer to me.

            You can say that you will go somewhere else also but there are a precious few companies who localize these games (xseed, atlus, NIS) and if we lose a major one like xseed it will hurt no one but us.

    • Lester Paredes

      I know. I’m the same way. Still, I know it’s just a digital release of a game that would otherwise be a retail release. And I understand why companies do that: Profit. They are in it to make money, after all. Still… 30 bucks? @ 20, i’d be all over it. Funny how that imaginary line makes me hesitate…

  • kylehyde

    Just a question? How much it cost on the psn?

    • Andrew Austin

      30 bucks as well. :/

      • Its as big as a retail game anyhow

      • kylehyde

        Thank you very much.

  • Rol

    Wonder if the 3DS version is going to have original audio. I remain skeptical about that.

  • FFmax

    This looks pretty nice but is there a real copy I can get a hold of? I don’t like the idea of spending $30 bucks on a eshop game and then having something bad happening to handheld and losing the entire game.It’s too risky for me.

    • Well its linked to you’re club nintendo account so you can just download it again and no you can only buy it on the 3DS in North America. Besides the game gets 60 hours of content on it for 30$ would have been 40$ retail

      • Elvick

        That is not true. Atlus and Aksys both released JRPGs with heafty content at retail for the PSP, all at $30. Then the PSP version of this game was the same price, digital only.

        Xseed needs to have more competitive pricing.

  • SetzerGabbiani

    Will be buying for sure to tide me over until Etrian Odyssey…which won’t be that far behind this.

  • sd28

    i may pick this up as it seemed decent enough from videos of the game

  • A game I’d undoubtedly support, especially if it gets an European release.

  • Finally! So much yes! I am buying day one.

  • DCBlackbird

    more bishounen huh….

  • Ladius

    Has XSeed said anything about the European PSN release of the PSP version?

  • SprintsMcGee

    You’re going to make me buy it again D=

  • MrJechgo


  • Nyandroid


  • Lester Paredes

    I want to play it… but it’s 30 dollars? That’s out of my price range, right now. I know the game is long enough to justify the money, but i sure wish there was a demo i could try out first.

    • Elvick

      It was $30 for PSP/Vita too, so I’m not surprised it’s the same price.

      • Lester Paredes

        yeah, I know. I pretty much main my Vita, in all honesty. I want to try it, a friend of mine says it’s great. But it’s so expensive for a downloadable game… in my opinion anyway. I generally try not to spend more than 20 bucks for a single PSN or XBLA or eShop game. On the odd occasion that I do, the price always drops not long afterwards. I’m looking @ you Harvest Moon: Hero of Leaf Valley and Metal Gear Solid: Peace Walker! I want to get Ace Combat and ZHP, but fear that they’ll drop in price mere seconds after i hit the purchase button…

  • So much complain on prices ==;

  • RaikageV

    But still no EU-Release, huh?

  • Julien_N

    30 bucks or not, I’ll get it once this comes to the PAL eShop.
    I am glad to see that the XSeed staff managed to overcome the issues they were previously talking about. Maybe this 3DS appearence will give Unchained Blades a place in the spotlight? Download “Full-games” are not very common on the eShop yet.

    Oh, I have a question to those who already played it : How does it compare to a SMT game such as…erm…Strange Journey for instance, which I am playing and enjoying right now?

  • TiamatNM

    This is a good game and well worth $30 even as a download only title. The game has great art, music, good english voice acting, and a cool skill learning system. It took me over 70 hours to clear it so it’s not like this is a short game either.

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