Posted Mon Nov 3, 2014 at 07:04 AM PST by Brian Hoss
A sign of hope for Nintendo fans.
Nintendo currently has two major platforms in the marketplace, the 3DS and the Wii U. One could argue that the New 3DS, which as of yet has no North American release date, is the beginnings of a new platform or an off-shoot, and sadly, like other Nintendo platforms, is region locked. That means that not only is the device tied to its region's digital store, but it also can only play cartridges from its home region. This can hardly be described as an ideal situation for consumers, and in comparison, the PS4, Xbox One, and even the Vita manage to offer a much greater degree of region freedom.
Though the New 3DS debuts as a region locked system, which it make a less attractive target for import, there is some hope. Nintendo President Satoru Iwata has recently made comments to investors that indicate that Nintendo may be looking towards a region free future.
"The game business has a history of taking a very long time with localization among other things, such as having to deal with various issues of marketing in each particular country, or games that have made use of licensed content that did not apply globally.
"Region-locking has existed due to circumstances on the sellers' side rather than for the sake of the customers. In the history of game consoles, that is the current situation.
"As for what should be done going forward, if unlocked for the benefit of the customers, there may also be a benefit for us.
"Unlocking would require various problems to be solved, so while I can't say today whether or not we intend to unlock, we realize that it is one thing that we must consider looking to the future."
Of course, it is much easier to say that there could be change when asked by an investor than it is to enact such change, but this is the most hopeful sign given by the company. As with digital ownership of games, it's not a subject that is likely go away any time soon.
Source: NeoGAF via Eurogamer
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