via Computer and Video Games

Fancy sending your mates in the States a Virtual Console Christmas present with the new Wii gift feature? No ball, because it's region locked.

Wii owners in North America, where the gift feature has just been released, report that sending Virtual Console gifts to friends in other countries - even North American neighbour Canada - results in a disappointing error message and the purchased VC game going into the bin.

It's all picket signs and flaming clubs on internet forums at the moment then, but when Japan, North America and Europe all have separate release schedules we can see why region locking the gifts makes absolute sense.

We don't think Nintendo fancies the idea of Japanese punters flogging Pokémon Snap to would-be buyers in Bromley, and underground Virtual Console shops would undoubtedly crop up overnight if unreleased games could be sent across the pond.

And even if that problem could be solved, realistically how many Wii owners want to send games to other countries? Regardless, there should be an easily noticeable warning of the region restriction before users pay the cash, we reckon.

Update: And it's just gone live in Europe - get gifting!