For months now, fans, or prospective fans who don't own a PS3, have been clamoring for a localization of the DS version of Ni No Kuni, which Namco Bandai shut down to due "translation issues and costs regarding the Wizard's Companion." A book that they in fact localized for limited copies of the PS3 Wizard's Edition of the game.
But all hope may not be lost, as Pocket Gamer is reporting a rumor that an executive from Namco Bandai stated that he "wasn't opposed" to the idea of releasing the game overseas on the 3DS.
If you're not aware, Ni No Kuni has a DS version of the game that was released way back in 2010, that preceded the international PS3 edition of the game (released in 2013) by quite a bit. The DS version is essentially the same world and framework, but with a heap of differences: like different locations, dialog, events, some stylus support, and a completely reworked battle system that feels more like a traditional JRPG.
But what the DS version is missing is the entire storyline involving the White Witch -- a rather central character to the overall lore that dons the cover and the title of the PS3 game. In fact, I played through the DS version recently with some minor translation help, and overall enjoyed the PS3 experience much more, due to the expanded storyline and greatly enhanced visuals that really do the incredible artwork justice.
The key here is that the DS version takes place within the confines of an isometric viewpoint, whereas the PS3 version is fully 3D, allowing you to see every detail of the world like looking into a diorama -- which Level-5 themselves admitted was the superior experience in an interview with Prima Games.
So all of you who feel like you are missing out, take solace in the fact that although the DS is an enjoyable experience on its own, the PS3 version is still very much a complete game in its own right, and gives you most of the happiness the world of Ni No Kuni can offer. If we never end up getting that DS version, maybe someday prospective fans can pick up a cheap PS3 and grab the game off the PSN. Or you can just import the game, as it works on the region free DS (and 3DS for that matter, as the region restriction only applies to 3DS carts).
Rumor: Namco Bandai [Pocket Gamer]
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10:00 AM on 10.01.2014