There Is Hope For Nintendo’s Unlocalized DS Games Yet

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The Nintendo DS has a vast library of first-party Nintendo games developed for it. Excellent games, some of which have yet to be released outside of Japan. Soma Bringer, Tomodachi Collection and Jet Impulse come to mind off the top of my head.


While none of these titles were specifically named, some of them may see the light of day yet, according to Nintendo president, Satoru Iwata.


Speaking with investors, Iwata stated that Nintendo are carefully considering how to handle the transition from Nintendo DS to Nintendo 3DS. While the company must dedicate resources to ensuring a solid line-up of 3DS games, the current large installed base of the DS and DSi cannot be ignored.


One way to take advantage of the current DS audience is to release games in territories that haven’t received them yet, Iwata feels. The original Animal Crossing on Gamecube is one such example. It wasn’t planned for localization until Nintendo’s localization branches evaluated the title and felt it could appeal to an overseas audience.


"Some software has already proved its marketability in Japan but is still not available in the overseas’ markets, and for some software titles, our localization teams are currently spending time to localize them," Iwata said to investors.


"Taking advantage of such software may be one of the ways to deal with your question about the transitional period from Nintendo DS to Nintendo 3DS," he concluded.


Food for thought:


Keep in mind that the less text a game has, the easier it is to justify localizing it. This could potentially put games like Soma Bringer, which are chock-full of text, at the very bottom of the list.

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Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.