This is something I’m not sure has ever happened before. We all know what “Earthbound” is right? It’s that ground-breaking adventure/RPG starring four children with psychic abilities who’re on a journey to defeat a reality-defying alien creature hell bent on swallowing up the world…Ness? Do you know Ness? He’s the hat-wearing, blue and yellow shirt-having, baseball bat swinging kid from that series of Nintendo fighting games “Super Smash Bros.”.
Surely you know him. I’m going to assume that you know him. Well the game that he’s from, “Earthbound”, hasn’t been physically around for a very long time with remaining copies of the original Super Nintendo Entertainment System (SNES) cartridges selling for way more than you can afford online. It did get a release on the GameBoy Advanced over in Japan but never here in the West and that made many fans of the cult classic very, very upset.
Skip to 2013, the game finally gets a secondary Western release, this time for the Wii U through the Nintendo eShop. The world, once again, rejoices! Skip, again, to the early months of 2015; a time wherein which this game will destroy everything we know about the world of digital distribution: Put up by Nintendo on their “Nintendo Club” purchase page which allows loyal gamers to exchange points for fan-favorite titles is “Earthbound”. Wonderful! This means those with enough coins to purchase the game will be getting it, practically, for free. The problem; apparently it’s “Sold Out”.
Yes, while “Earthbound” is still listed as a title that can be purchased by redeeming coins, once you actually enter the web page it will alert you to the fact that this game is “unavailable” due to it being “Sold Out”. This possibly means that Nintendo limited the amount of digital copies that could be distributed around the world and that, well…kind of sucks. Big time. Reading the outlines of the redeemable code purchase, it explains that this game will be made available until the 30th of June which, by my calendar, isn’t for another two months.
Fact is, despite all that’s been said, the game is still purchasable through the standard eShop. The only difference is that you’ll have to use actual money instead of coins. Club Nintendo seems as though it’s the only one of the two that has “Sold Out” of digital copies which means that, yes, Nintendo has possibly limited the amount of distributable codes seeing as it is somewhat of a special promotion.
Many people out there are a little upset at Nintendo right now for doing so whereas other, at no shock to me, are defending Nintendo making the point that it is very hard to keep up with the digital side of the industry. Whether or not that’s true is up to someone more intelligent than me to decide. I’m just glad I’ve already played the game.
Check it out for yourself: Click Here