With all the big announcements coming out of E3, you might have thought that Nintendo was totally abandoning its home territory for the lucrative North American and European gaming markets. That's definitely not the case.
Today, the company made a flury of announcements over in Japan, giving a sneak peak at its Wii and DS lineups for the summer months.
Wii Sports Resort leads the way with a Japanese release finalized at June 25. Yes, they're getting it before us by just a bit! The game will come bundled with Wii Motion Plus, all for the standard Wii game price of 4,800 yen.
Nintendo Japan opened an attractive official site for the game today showing videos for many of the events. The site should be navigatable even without Japanese language ability, so definitely check it out.
The official site details a campaign that could induce heated jealousy in anyone not based in Japan. From June 15 through August 31, those who pick up Wii Sports Resort and register the game's serial number at Club Nintendo will be entered in a drawing for a blue Wiimote/Nunchuck set. Nintendo will be giving away just 5,000 of these, meaning you can expect to pay quite the premium on Ebay.
A limited edition Wiimote color!
The Wii Motion Plus accessory is due for solo release simultaneously with Resort. It will sell for 1,500 yen.
So why release a solo Wii Motion Plus if the device is already being bundled with Resort? As with the US, Japan will be getting some third party Wii Motion Plus games as well.
Surprisingly, Electronic Arts was the first third party in Japan to share release details for a Wii Motion Plus game. That game is none-other-than EA Sports Grand Slam Tennis. The cartoony baseball game will hit Japan on July 2. A US release is planned for June 8.
Following closely behind Grand Slam Tennis will be a Japanese-born title, Batting Revolution from Alpha Unit. This "real batting game" sports a license from Nippon Professional Baseball and features 36 players from twelve pro Japanese baseball teams. Wii Motion Plus will be used for increased batting precision. Japanese players can expect Batting Revolution on July 16 at 3,990 yen.
Nintendo's summer plans extend beyond Wii Motion Plus. In fact, one of the summer's biggest Wii games won't use the device.
We previously shared details on Monster Hunter 3's Japanese release, which is set for August 1. Today, Capcom provided final pricing information for the game's online component.
As with Monster Hunter G, players will have to pay to play online here. Payment takes the form of time-limited Hunting Tickets, purchased with WiiPoints. A 30 day ticket will go for 800 WiiPoints, with 60 and 90 days costing respectively 1,500 and 2,000 WiiPoints. Capcom will also be giving players a 20 day free trial period, similar to what they did with Monster Hunter G.
Monster Hunter 3 and the Wii itself will be part of additional hardware bundles. We were so excited about these, in fact, that we reported on them earlier in the day. Be sure and check up our writeup on the black Wii and Monster Hunter hardware bundles.
On the DS front, there's only one thing that needs to be said: Dragon Quest IX. A July 11 date for the game was shared months ago (well, when the original March release date was postponed). Today, Nintendo revealed that it will be supporting the release through a new DSi color -- the red unit that we detailed earlier.
This is just a standard DSi hardware package, with the same set of included items and the same 18,900 yen price point. For the record, this will be the sixth DSi color for Japan.
The other big DS news for the day comes through somewhat of a stealth announcement from Nintendo. Remember Chibi Robo? You know, the charming house-cleaning robot who longs to make his family -- be it on GameCube, DS, or Wii through the New Play Control series -- happy? It appears that he's returning to the DS!
A new Chibi Robo game appeared out of nowhere today on Nintendo's Japanese DS release schedule. It's titled "Okaeri! Chibi Robo! Happy Richie Dai Souji," which roughly translates to "Welcome Home! Chibi Robo! Happy Richie Big Cleaning." Aside from a July 23 Japanese release date, that's all we know at the moment! But we'll be sure and fill you in once we've tracked down some details.
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