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Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Nintendo Crippling Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies sales

By LUDWIG VON KOOPA - Kind of screwing us all over.

I think I kind of have to address the great Nintendo eShop shutdown disaster that happened during Christmas and several days after. We all know it's Pokémon Bank's fault, and that service still isn't available. More importantly, there were a lot of 3DS bundles that came with download codes for games like The Legend of Zelda: A Link Between Worlds instead of a physical card. Kid's Christmases must've been ruined. We're still not ready for a solely digitized age.

Speaking of Christmas being ruined, if you tried to follow our Christmas list advice, you would be unable to. The top two listed games there are Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney - Dual Destinies and EarthBound, which are downloadable only (unless you're crazy: see here and here respectively). Let's focus on the former for this article.

Since the game was an eShop exclusive, having the eShop down on the biggest shopping day of the year (and several days afterward) means that Capcom must've lost a lot of sales. And that's very important, because those frustrated customers might not come back to purchase the game after the eShop is back up. They might've already spent their money on something else, like donating to KoopaTV. ...Well, no, they can't, since we don't have a donation link or anything (yet). So maybe they spent it on an ugly sweater or an Obamacare premium. The point is, the money is gone now.
"Not only are they relying on the Ace Attorney fan base, but they're relying on Nintendo of America and the Nintendo eShop service to carry them through. We should feel HONOURED that Capcom is bothering to grace Nintendo systems once more with Ace Attorney goodness".
WOOPS. I'm not saying I was wrong or anything with that, but I was assuming that Nintendo's online infrastructure would meet Capcom's trust. Guess not.
"In any case, making the game a digital download is quite beneficial for any M-rated game, because if you go to a store the clerks are obligated to deny you from buying the game if you don't look old enough. I mean, that doesn't stop Call of Duty from selling millions. But on the Nintendo eShop, all you have to do is lie about your age and you can get any M-rated game you please. Sure there are parental controls, but who really uses those? This makes the game easier to sell."
Unfortunately, that is no longer the case because of NNIDs. There are countless stories on Miiverse of Ace Attorney fans being all excited to purchase Dual Destinies only for the 3DS eShop to lock them out because they're not 17 or older. One of the first things the 3DS NNID asks for (as does the Wii U registration process) is your birthdate, including year. So all of those underage fans answered honestly. So it turns out that this DOESN'T make the game easier to sell. It makes it even harder, because unlike a retail store where you can get your parent to buy the game for you, parental controls cannot bypass the ESRB restriction on the eShop if your NNID birthdate is after 1996.

Guess you got to wait. This isn't a problem on the Wii U because you can have multiple NNIDs per system, but you can only have one NNID to every 3DS. You cannot change the birthdate in your NNID settings, either.
"Additional changes (birthdate, country) cannot be made once they have been set in the system. If you need to make changes to this information, please contact us by calling 1-800-255-3700."
You have to call them. "Oh, I accidentally typo'd my birth year in the tens digit!" ...That might work. You'll have to try. That's my suggestion.

The only other way to resolve this is to delete your 3DS NNID. However, if you connected it to your Wii U, the NNID is deleted from both systems. Your connected eShop balance is also deleted if you have any money on there. Every game you bought from the eShop up to this point will be deleted and cannot be recovered without repurchasing it (at full price). This might still be a good idea if you just got a 3DS, don't have a Wii U or just got one, and haven't done anything on the eShop yet. Including redeem that download code, since you can't re-redeem it if you delete your NNID. Still, this situation might fit with a lot of people. Try calling Nintendo first, though.

As it stands, though, my assumptions to defend Capcom's decision to make Dual Destinies downloadable only have been wrong: Nintendo was unable to keep the service running during the most critical sales period of the game's life, and Nintendo also makes M-rated games harder to buy than they would be if they were in stores. Will Capcom forgive Nintendo so we can see future Ace Attorney games on Nintendo consoles? Hopefully. I heard the game has been selling pretty well anyway. To ensure it, you should buy the game too. If you're old enough, that is. Here's a review.

Ludwig has been encouraging the view that the Ace Attorney series should be more popular. Follow him on Miiverse because he stalks the Dual Destinies community at NNID PrinceOfKoopas. He won't delete his.

To see Nintendo's official response on this problem, click here!
For the full list of games being affected by the ESRB policy, click here.
For a workaround, click here.
This notably did NOT happen to Nintendo again in Christmas 2014!


  1. Ugh, I thought I was the only one pissed over this.
    Apparently with the three times I've contacted Nintendo Support, they can't do anything. They can't change your age.
    I also saw on a forum that someone contacted Nintendo and they said it was an error and it should allow if parental permissions allow it.

    Nintendo... get your act together please. I want my Objections. Or at least get on the other m rated games that got a price drop.
    Or at the very least, update the system so we can change our age, just like how we can change our gender apparently.
    Sweet site BTW. Glad I found it.

    1. The entirety of underaged Miiverse is pissed off over this. Every day there are a couple of people who are like "HOW DO I BUY THIS GAME IT SAYS I'M TOO YOUNG!" and "WHY IS THIS RATED M???".

      They... CAN'T change it? Well, they CLAIM on their site they can. Hence the whole "call us if you need to make changes" quote.

      Can you give me the link to that forum post? NINTENDO is claiming it's an error?

      Ha. Yeah, I like how you can change your gender but not your age.
      Alternatively, allow 3DSs to have more than one NNID like the Wii U.

      Thank you very much for your sweet words. ^.^

    2. Well Nintendo has been an "over protective" company for a while now. They took out some stuff that is "inappropriate" (I'm looking at the butts of Fire Emblem: Awakening and Chibi-Robo Photo Finder. Fire Emblem is even rated T for teen. And they took out a mostly censored bottom -.-)

      They can't change it, but one person said it was an error.
      Now that I think about it, it's not exactly reliable since it's his first post and his account is somewhat recent. There was also another thread I found on gamefaqs, but it's buried somewhere.
      Nintendo supports transgenders, but they don't support time traveling XD
      And you're welcome!

    3. "I contacted Nintendo, they said that it is an error, it should allow you to access it with parent permission and they are working to fix it now." - Techsider guy

      To be fair, that censor in Awakening makes it even MORE... uh... interesting. Yeah.

      Eh, maybe I should do some investigative journalism and ask Nintendo via webform.

      I saw the gender-changing thing as less of a transgender supporting move and more of a 3DS-reselling move but keeping the content on the 3DS.

    4. "Interesting" Yes...Yes quite. I think they even left in a joke about one of the characters being gay and about "boingy bits." It just confuses me to what's appropriate for teens and what's not.

      That may or may not help. I probably won't do it anymore because I've just contacted Nintendo a total of six times now and they probably have my name plastered somewhere on the "do not answer list."

      I guess so, but it works in a ton of ways I guess. But if it were for reselling, you'd think they would let you change your age for the new victim/customer.

    5. Anyway, well, I sent an e-mail to Nintendo.

      I have a pretty good track record of getting responses.

      So I've gotten responses (eventually) from: Nintendo, ePrize, and the White House.
      The only firm that's ignored KoopaTV completely is EA.

    6. The White House?! Great lord Arceus.
      I'm not surprised EA is ignoring people.
      I mean, they're swimming in cash from the what, $10 DLCs. They don't care about filthy peasants like us.
      Let's cross our fingers then and hope Nintendo sees the error of their ways.
      I don't exactly have high hopes because of some stuff that Nintendo needs to work on. (Like that scammy Flipnote app that was supposed to be released August of last year and of course, Pokemon Bank.)

    7. Yeah, The White House is the cause of the "(eventually)".

      I'm surprised EA is ignoring people, since I'm going through their press contact channels, not through customer support. So it's not that they don't care about filthy peasants, but they don't care about *industry journalists*.

      ...At least, not ones that don't affect Metacritic rankings. (No way am I going to try to get KoopaTV to qualify for Metacritic just to spite EA.)

      EA only has like 1.3 billion in cash as of 2013. I wouldn't call that swimming when you consider it's been on a downward trend.

      ...Granted, that's only because they paid back some liabilities in 2013 and didn't take on long-term new ones.

      I like to think that Pokémon Bank is a server capacity problem and the eShop ESRB lock-out is a design flaw. Two different problems that can be solved by... different teams, right?

    8. Well, I guess so. They (EA) kinda release incomplete games in my opinion and I suppose people are starting to get sick of that.
      Well, the gaming industry has been taking some hits here and there I guess.
      Hopefully, but we can never know unless we ram into the offices.

    9. Yeah, I'll share that opinion with you. But EA can't just shut themselves out from dissenting opinions or criticism like that!

      Supposedly Geno was supposed to destroy Nintendo of Japan (and Japan as a whole) for not being in Brawl, but I guess he hasn't done that. So if he can't do that to their office, we can't. So might as well just ask Nintendo, hope they answer, and believe their response.

    10. I know they can't, but it takes quite a loud voice to reach their ears.
      Yup, still crossing my fingers. I just have the money in my eshop just sitting their. Might as well buy something else in the meantime and fill up later.

    11. Oh, I forgot that you yourself are suffering from being locked out of M-rated games.

      Well if you buy something else, make sure you got your finances planned out. ...Or at least make sure the moment you turn 17 you got the money. Can't be too far away, can it?

    12. Don't worry. I've been doing a bit of work around the place to get some cash so I'll be fine when the time comes.
      Well, a couple years or so I guess :x

    13. Well, time to increase the effort into changing this.


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