Turn up your despair dials, importers. Nintendo surprised few but disappointed many nonetheless when it confirmed officially that its new hotness, the Wii U (due this November), will have the devil known as "region-locking" inflicted upon it, same as with its predecessor the Wii and handheld sibling the 3DS, as well as pretty much every platform Nintendo has released, barring handhelds (until the Nintendo DS). It looks like the DS may represent the last time being region-free can be taken as a given with The Big N.
That in mind, this is more an affirmation of the status quo than an actual change, but one can't help but be disappointed, particularly for importers.
Breaking out the emulators and custom firmware aside, I suppose folks interested in cross-regional gaming without having to buy a second console can only sit back and hope Nintendo's release policies are less...flaky this time around *cough*Xenoblade*cough*.
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