Nintendo Purchases 2.6% of Bandai
Nintendo purchased 1.28 million shares of Bandai recently, given them a 2.6% stake in Japan's
largest toy making company. Nintendo and Bandai say there are no plans for a takeover, and that
Nintendo is merely buying stock. Speculation, of course, is running rampant at this point.
Japanese Club Nintendo Opens
NCL has started up their version of Club Nintendo, an
incentives program for those who buy Nintendo software. Beginning October 31st, Japanese gamers
can register their copy of Baten Kaitos, Donkey Konga, Mario Kart: Double Dash!!, Mario
Party 5, R: Racing Revolution, or Pokemon Coloseum will be eligible to receive
a free demo disc containing Pac-Man Vs. and several videos of upcoming games. Now to see
how long it takes NOA to start up this promotion, and whether the USA version will give bonus
points to all upcoming GC titles.
Another GC Bonus Disc for Japan
Japanese gamers who preorder Baten Kaitos will receive a bonus disc containing the
Famicom game Tower of Druaga, based on an old Namco arcade game. The bonus disc is rumored
to contain solutions for completing all 60 floors of (presumably) Tower of Druaga.
In similar news, Baten Kaitos is rumored to be a two disc GC title.
of Baten Kaitos include one showing GC character artwork and in game prompts with a
background image composed of a level from Tower of Druaga, so it appears that the Famicom
game might somehow appear in the GC RPG. If so, Namco might be more willing to bring this
promotion over to the USA.
Bizarre NES-to-GBA Adaptor
The Taiwanese company behind the GBA to TV adaptor kit has announced a Famicom/NES to GBA
adaptor. The device plugs into your GBA and lets you play any NES or Famicom game on the GBA.
While no official release date has been set, import game, hardware, and hacking store Lik
Sang has a page up with
a picture of the unit. While this may work well with Famicom carts (which are slightly smaller
in size than SNES carts), NES games are seemingly too bulky to make such an adaptor really
Third Party GBA Player?
Datel, makers of the Action Replay, have announced that they will be releasing the "Advance
Game Port" for the GC shortly. The device comes with a Datel GC disc and an adaptor. GBA games
can be plugged into the adaptor, then plugged into the GC memory card slot. The device will
not play standard GB nor GBC games, just GBA titles. While it has a slightly lower MSRP than
the GB Player, the main selling point seems to be that it is tiny and easily removable. At
this point it does not appear to support any Game Link cable functions.
Another Nintendo Contest
If you visit the Mario and Luigi website,
you can enter a knock-knock joke contest. The best joke that is entered will win a GBA SP and a
copy of the upcoming Mario and Luigi RPG.
GBA F-Zero and Mario Golf
NCL has confirmed an upcoming F-Zero title for the GBA. F-Zero: Falcon Densetu (Legend of
the Falcon, Falcon Legend, or Legend of Captain Falcon) is
scheduled for release in late November, and will feature a vehicle creation and customization
feature, much like the one in F-Zero GX. The title is derived from the upcoming F-Zero:
Falcon Densetu animated TV show, set to air in Japan shortly. Some reports state that there
will be some sort of link between this game and F-Zero GX.
Mario Golf: Advance Tour for the GBA seems to have a rough release date of March 2004, if the websites
of major USA retailers are to be believed. It will link up to the GC version of the game, allowing you
to train a player on the GBA and play with them on the GC, as well as opening up new courses.
In Stores Now
Super Mario Advance 4: Super Mario Bros. 3 is in many stores now and available for puchase,
even though it doesn't officially go on sale until next week. Mega Man Zero 2 for the GBA
is available, as is Demikids (both the Dark and Light versions). The GC version of
Wallace and Gromit in Project Zoo should be out shortly.
Tube Sliders for $10
If you visit Electronics Boutique's website, you can purchase Tube Sliders, the futuristic racing game
made by the developers of the GBA F-Zero: Maximum Velocity for a mere $10. Just visit
product page for the game, or visit your local EB store. Please remember that while the
developer of the game, NDCube, is a Nintendo second party group, the game itself isn't nearly
as good as F-Zero GX.
Upcoming Toys R Us Promotion
According to various rumors on the internet, Toys R Us will be having a "Buy 2, Get 1 Free"
sale on all GameCube software next week, from the 19th to the 25th.
In Stores This Week
Sim City 2000 for the GBA should go on sale sometime this week.
GC Sales Improve
Recent reports indicate that the GameCube's sales in the U.K. have gone up
400%. Hopefully this will be the beginning of a more successful perion in the
GameCube's European life.
In Japan, GC sales were up 5% during the first six months of 2003 as compared
to 2002. In comparison, PS2 sales were down 33%. Of course, more PS2 units were
sold, but the difference in sales rates is interesting. Nintendo is once again
the top software company in Japan, selling more games than any other publisher.
We are interested in seeing what happens when the Japanese GC price cut goes into effect.
In Japan, Toys R Us will be carrying a limited edition golden GBA SP. Strangely,
the listed price for this unit is 500 yen less than the standard price. As of
now, there are no known plans for this SP color to be released in the USA.
Wizard of the Coast Sues Nintendo
Wizards of the Coast, former distributor of the Pokemon Card Game in
the USA, is suing The Pokemon Company and Nintendo. As you may recall, Nintendo
recently set up a new trading card subdivision, which is now handling the
Pokemon and eReader card lines. Wizards of the Coast claims that it holds
patent rights to the concept of a collectible card game, and that the Pokemon
Company hired away Wizards of the Coast staff and thus gaining confidential
company information. Wizards of the Coast also claims that the Pokemon Company
broke their contract by denying Wizards the right to publish new Pokemon card
series which they had spent time and money developing.
Given the fact that Wizards of the Coast didn't develop the Pokemon Card game
in the first place, and that collectible cards and card games existed prior to
the creation of Wizards of the Coast, this suit seems to have little merit.
New "Who Are You" Campaign Commerical
If you visit Nintendo's Who Are You site,
you can now view some of the upcoming Who Are You commercials, including what
might be the theatrical trailer we keep hearing about.
Skies of Arcadia For $10
Best Buy is selling the GC RPG Skies of Arcadia Legends for a mere $10.
However, most stores are out, so you might have to buy it from
Best Buy's website.
Shameless Self Promotion