Five Games Never Released In North America That Would Be Easy To Port
With the release of Vib-Ribbon recently, it reminded me there are a lot of games that never made their way to North America that could benefit from a digital release today. Vib-Ribbon may never have released in North America, but it did release in Europe, meaning it did go through the rigors of translation. After going through the trouble of releasing an English version of the game, why not release the game digitally for North America players? These are a few more games that should see release in North America with the advent of digital distribution that have already been translated making the process of releasing them that much simpler.
Right out of the gate, I am already breaking my self-imposed rule for this feature: the game must already be available somewhere in English. Technically, Mother 3, the Game Boy Advance Earthbound sequel that never came to North America, has not been translated by Nintendo. But, the game has been translated by somebody, and that somebody wants Nintendo to use their translation. You can find out the whole story here, but the quick version is that professional translator Clyde Mandelin (whose day job is with FUNimation translating anime) lead a group of translators who released an English version of the game in 2008. A few years later, when Earthbound released for the Wii U's Virtual Console, Mandelin publicly offered the translation to Nintendo free of charge in the hopes it would foster an official release for the game. I'm hopeful Nintendo has secretly been working on the game for a 3DS or Wii U Virtual Console release to be announced soon.
Last Window: The Secret of Cape West
Last Window is a sequel to the DS mystery title Hotel Dusk. The original was fairly well-received and the sequel came out in Europe and Japan continuing the story of detective Kyle Hyde, but it never came out in North America. It would be nice to see the game made available as a downloadable title, especially considering the game is already in English.
Freshly-Picked Tingle's Rosy Rupeeland
This bizarre Zelda off-shoot isn't even a particularly good game. My wife and I excitedly imported it, but neither of us made any real progress in Tingle's adventure because we both quickly lost interest. We actually played the game as the second segment on our Earthbound episode of Replay, which you can see here. Mostly, I would just like the see the game be made available more widely so I don't have to try and convince people it is a real thing.
Metal Wolf Chaos
A frequent inclusion on strange games we wish were available in North America, Metal Wolf Chaos is a Japanese game about a United States President jumping in the Metal Wolf bipedal mech to battle with the vice president, among other villains. The game features full English voice acting, and was made by From Software, the folks behind the Dark Souls games. It deserves an Xbox Live Arcade release, or an HD re-release for Xbox One. Either will do just fine.
I actually didn't know this game existed until I began to put together this list, but the idea of a a game based on Home Alone, where you have to set a series of traps in your home to capture villainous robbers while your parents are away, has been discussed in our offices before. This game, based on an American film by the way, released on PlayStation 2 in Europe in 2006, but it never released in North America. It both sold and reviewed poorly, but I still have a great deal of curiosity about how a more modern Home Alone video game would work.