Ocarina of Time to be the priciest Virtual Console game yet?

According to the official Japanese Virtual Console release list, Nintendo seems to think Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time is worth two dollars more than the rest of the Nintendo 64 library. When the game hits Japanese Virtual Consoles in February, it’s going to run gamers 1200 points; that’s 200 points more than what gamers have come to expect from a Nintendo 64 release.

Ocarina of Time certainly represents a defining moment for the Nintendo 64, and is easily one the console’s best titles. But when the game was originally launched at retail, it came in at an MSRP that was in line with other releases.

If Nintendo is going to start charging more for games based on what they perceive is quality and/or popularity, perhaps they might want to consider lowering the prices of some of the D-list classics that are no doubt going to eventually hit the Virtual Console. Castlevania 64, for example, should be 150 points, 850 points less than other N64 games.

This is not the first time we’ve seen Virtual Console pricing that’s not in line with what consumers have expected. R-Type was released earlier at 800 points, 200 points more than other TurboGrafx-16 titles. In that case, the reasoning behind that price increase made sense that actually weighed in our favor (the US version contained all eight levels at 800 points; Japanese owners had to purchase the game in two parts, each at 600 points a piece).

Although it’s unlikely, unless the VC release of Ocarina of Time also contains the expanded Ura Zelda (or “Master Quest”), it might be hard for some gamers to swallow the price increase.

Let the whinging commence

Nick Chester