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DS

Phoenix Wright Gets Appeal?

by Karl Castaneda - March 15, 2006, 9:17 am PST
Total comments: 53

Recent reports have led us to believe that Capcom’s lawyer adventure is boosting its availability. Is it the truth? Updated yet again with availability and pricing info!

If you’ve had trouble buying a copy of Phoenix Wright, Capcom’s fantastic lawyer game on the DS, lately, you’re not the only one. Much to the chagrin of potential buyers, the game’s been out of stock with retailers for some time, due to low production numbers in the United States. There seemed to be some hope, however, when reports of a new shipment were confirmed. And soon, too, with a projected date of tomorrow. Oh yes, it would seem that gamers the country over would finally be able to experience this Triple-A game. It was a nice happy ending…

HOLD IT

PGC was as excited as anyone when we heard such reports, and so we went right to the source, hoping to make sure the claim was true. According to Capcom, though, the game is not sold out nationwide, so there is a chance your local store still has a copy from the original shipments. But the company is finally starting to acknowledge the widespread shortages, saying that more units are on the way. Here's the official statement from Capcom:

"Based on demand we are shipping more units. Consumers interested in purchasing a copy should check with their store."

As of this writing, even Capcom's official game store is still sold out. But it seems that supplies are on their way:

"From our end, we can verify that units have been shipped and at the same price as we originally shipped them. On the retail side, we can't control what they price the product at."

It seems, then, that the distributor supplying NCS is simply marking up the game's price due to the high demand. Normally priced copies should be entering the marketplace soon, so there is no reason to pay more than the suggested retail price of $30 USD.

So what can you do if your local retailer doesn’t have a copy yet? You'll have to keep on asking your nearest outlet to order more copies. Until they arrive, though, practice those "OBJECTIONS!"

Talkback

RiskyChrisMarch 12, 2006

Awesome. Just awesome.

Bill AurionMarch 12, 2006

More like Capcom sucks for not shipping copies out on their own... face-icon-small-thumbsdown.gif

Shin GallonMarch 12, 2006

Having just finished the game last week, I have to say that gamers should do everything (legal) in their power to obtain a copy. It's one of the best justifications for the DS's existence.

Bartman3010March 12, 2006

This just cant be real...

So wait, we should bug the retailers to order more copies?

Lets go to the Capcom forums, then. Restock on Capcom.com for god sakes...

31 FlavasMarch 12, 2006

And if you need any further proof that phoenix wright is a must have.... Check out the TGS 2005 promo trailer.

ruby_onixMarch 12, 2006

Quote

A Capcom representative told us, though, that the game isn’t even sold out, and thus, would not receive a re-release.
...
So what can you do if your local retailer doesn’t have a copy? Pester them until they reorder, says Capcom.

Capcom lies. Retailers have been trying that for months and it hasn't worked. Until now, apparently.

But if they actually follow through with more Phoenix Wright now, and we aren't reduced to importing it from Europe of all places, then it doesn't really matter what they say.

jasonditzMarch 12, 2006

HOLD IT!

Why does the reprint cost $5 more than the original? Was there a bout of inflation in the past few months? Since the game's obviously selling better than Capcom expected, shouldn't that be a reason to if anything lower the price on the re-release so as to maybe build up excitement for bringing the sequel stateside?

ShyGuyMarch 12, 2006

I agree with Shin Gallon, do whatever you can to get this game. It has the best written humor I have ever seen in a videogame. Yes, even better than the Mario RPGs, or Animal Crossing. It's actually entertaining just to highlight different items around the screen to read the descriptions.

RiskyChrisMarch 12, 2006

I'm about to jump through a ton of hoops to get this game; it better be worth it! =)

I was rolling on the floor watching that translated video!

Ian SaneMarch 13, 2006

I think we have inadvertingly stumbled on the secret to selling an unfamiliar or new concept. First undersupply retailers with the game. The rareness of the title will get the hardcore internet gamers into a frenzy. Even if the game isn't that good the sheer fact that it's rare and competently made will give it this buzz of being an overlooked classic. Then re-release the game and watch as every game geek in the country snaps the game up the second they see it so they can experience this supposedly great game they missed out on the first time.

I myself have bought a few games because of this phenomenon. I remember everyone was saying great things about Iridion 2 and Ninja Five-O so when I managed to find them I snapped them up. In the end neither game really turned out to be that great. The greatest appeal in both titles is that they play more like games used to in the 2D days but if they had been released during that time they probably wouldn't have been considered a big deal at all. Yet both games have a fair bit of buzz around them with hardcore gamers because they're hard to find and they're decent games.

Now Phoenix Wright might be legitimately a classic. I don't know because I haven't played it. But I think it would be a good strategy to intentionally try to make a game into an "overlooked classic" by intentionally making it rare.

KDR_11kMarch 13, 2006

Ninja Five-O is great. While it may not have been that much of a standout during the 2d days (grappling hooks weren't that common, especially such freely usable ones) it's still a great game and a lot more fun than many other 2d games (including recent Nintendo 2d games). Now Iridion 2, that was a waste of money. One of the worst shmups I've played during the last few years outside of samples for game programming libraries and our competitors during the last 72h challenge (sorry, smack talk has to be face-icon-small-tongue.gif). It looks nice but the gameplay can't even measure up to the average freeeware shooter.

I think this tactic is currently working for Ico and hell, it sold me that POS Rez and the way-too-stealthy Beyond Good and Evil, too.

BTW, Ninja Five-O makes for an enjoyable TAS.

Ian Sane, shut your trap hole. You're always cynical. This game is fantastic, no two ways about it. I was never that huge a fan of PC adventure games (which Phoenix Wright is close to) so your nostalgia mule isn't going to work on me. Sure, parts of Phoenix Wright feel like Carmen San Diego (which I did play as a kid), but no more than a third of the action. Pretty much everything about the courtroom drama was new to me.

Ian SaneMarch 13, 2006

I don't recall saying anything negative about Phoenix Wright.

I was just pointing out a potential strategy of using rarity to build demand in a game and that it could work even if the game isn't that exceptional. That doesn't mean Phoenix Wright isn't, I'm just saying the strategy might work well enough that the game in question doesn't even have to be that great.

My earlier post is actually pretty off topic and I just thought of it because of this rumour involving Phoenix Wright being rare.

Karl Castaneda #2March 13, 2006

Yeah, TYP, Ian's got you on this one. He even said, "Now Phoenix Wright might be legitimately a classic. I don't know because I haven't played it."

Shifting to another topic, what'd you guys think of this article as far as the new standard for rumor reporting. Now that Louie's retired, the style for reporting is kind of left up in the air. Any suggestions?

vuduMarch 13, 2006

Ian has a point. He wasn't being cynical about Phoenix Wright. He was being cynical about publishing strategy. Lay off him. Angery_Nerd.gif

ShyGuyMarch 13, 2006

Can I send in a rumor to get published? How substantial does the rumor have to be? I liked the follow up in the same article.

Smash_BrotherMarch 13, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: TheYoungerPlumber
Ian Sane, shut your trap hole. You're always cynical. This game is fantastic, no two ways about it. I was never that huge a fan of PC adventure games (which Phoenix Wright is close to) so your nostalgia mule isn't going to work on me. Sure, parts of Phoenix Wright feel like Carmen San Diego (which I did play as a kid), but no more than a third of the action. Pretty much everything about the courtroom drama was new to me.


Ian, I think what you should derive from this is how good PW truly is: people will rabidly defend the game. I'm no exception to this.

PW delivers a certain level of satisfaction which is seldom found in gaming: the satisfaction of being right. When you win, it's like it was your ability to outthink the game is what won the case and that's something you barely ever see, even in puzzle games.

I can't say for certain if you'd enjoy it, but it's definitely worth the hype in my book, if for no other reason than being something new and unique in gaming. Some might call it a text adventure, but Phoenix Wright is to text adventures what Mario 64 was to platformers.

KnowsNothingMarch 13, 2006

Acutally, I was a bit let down by Pheonix Wright. I can appreciate good writing and humor in an adventure game, but for me it's a little too linear. Granted, I suppose I'm only about half done with the game, but I just don't feel compelled to play. I want to be able to explore my own ideas, and present my own ideas to the court. I feel the game was far too restraining.

But whatever.

Karl Castaneda #2March 13, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: ShyGuy
Can I send in a rumor to get published? How substantial does the rumor have to be? I liked the follow up in the same article.


You can most certainly use the News Tip Line to send in a rumor, if that's what you mean. As for how we choose rumors to cover, they usually have to sound meaty. For example, if someone half-assed a blog post about Nintendo using mind-control devices in NEW Super Mario Bros., we wouldn't run it, obviously. Stuff that sounds more plausible and has been run on a variety of sites, though (like Phoenix Wright), is really what we're looking for, especially with New Rumors, which I plan on keeping up far more often than Louie ever did. If possible, I'd like it to be weekly.

Infernal MonkeyMarch 13, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: Ian Sane
tankbotcrop2zi.jpg


The 'hardcore' have been importing it from Japan and getting ready to order it from Europe in a few days due to this pathetic treatment. I'm sure this is what Capcom USA planned in their amazing strategy for sales.

Ian SaneMarch 13, 2006

"The 'hardcore' have been importing it from Japan and getting ready to order it from Europe in a few days due to this pathetic treatment. I'm sure this is what Capcom USA planned in their amazing strategy for sales."

I'm not saying this is Capcom's strategy just that it might actual be a strategy worth trying. Capcom obviously isn't doing it because they don't seem to have any plans on a re-release which is a key part of the strategy.

And why is my quoted text a picture of an action figure?

Karl Castaneda #2March 13, 2006

I think it's his new thing for you, Ian.

JonLeungMarch 13, 2006

Mia Fey is HAWT.

For a, uhm...fictional dead lawyer boss woman.

I will admit that Phoenix Wright is very linear. I played the game for its humor and plotlines, so I did not have a problem with this. I can see why some might, especially if they approached the game primarily to play the role of a lawyer (considering PW does some pretty darn illegal things).

Smash_BrotherMarch 13, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: Ian Sane
And why is my quoted text a picture of an action figure?


I don't get the reference, either.

I thought the title on the side said "Talkbot" at first, which would have made sense, but it's actually "Tankbot".

StrellMarch 13, 2006

Um....gamestop.com right now is reporting that it has been re-released. It's showing as instock at Walmart.com.

Just a heads up. Get it now if you don't have it. I WILL hunt you down if you don't.

The rumor article has been edited to clarify the situation, after Capcom contacted us again. Check the last few sentences to see what I mean. I'm actually hoping to get more specific details about the reorders, like the ship date and any change in price.

ruby_onixMarch 13, 2006

BTW, NCSX says that they have new copies of the game in their hands, and they're shipping them out as of today. So I'm not sure how this can be considered a false rumor. Unless you're saying all the people who were having an impossible time finding the game were just a rumor, in which case you've been Jedi-mind-tricked by Capcom. Or maybe you just wanted an excuse to post a link to NCSX, and yell "Objection!" and "Guilty!" in a PGC news post. emot-zoid1.gif

Edit: Nevermind.


Ian: Releasing niche games in small quantities and letting word of mouth take over isn't a new concept. And yelling "shortage" and "out of print" does tend to work in spurring sales, but not always, and it tends to leave the userbase feeling burned and manipulated. There's no reason for anyone to do it on purpose when it happens by itself sometimes anyways. The problem with pushing your luck is that some bad luck might push you overboard.

Yes, allowing game shortages has succeeded in making Atlus one of the largest and most influential game publishers over the years.

Smash_BrotherMarch 13, 2006

I think what Ian suggested is happening but for different reasons.

The hardcore would would enjoy the type of game buy it, love it, and rave about it. Meanwhile, by the time the non-hardcore who wouldn't enjoy the game hear all the raving, it's already gone from shelves but only because the publisher didn't predict strong sales.

For the next few months, people are left to try and track down a copy of the game while the hardcores continue to rave about how great it is.

Finally, the publisher ships more and the people who wouldn't like the game try it and give it bad reviews which would have countered the raving of the hardcore had there been enough copies to go around.

In Phoenix Wright's case, it's a niche game, but it's an excellent game, probably the best experience I've had on the DS to date.

EDIT: Hey, look! I just negated my own opinion...

RiskyChrisMarch 13, 2006

There is no phoenix wright within 30283 miles of me...

=(

RizeDavid Trammell, Staff AlumnusMarch 13, 2006

Wal-Mart.com claims to have the game in stock. I just ordered a copy (missed out on this last year).

http://www.walmart.com/catalog/product.do?product_id=3943030

Bartman3010March 14, 2006

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg/detail/-/B000B69E96/sr=8-1/qid=1142353683/ref=pd_bbs_1/102-7536909-4573754?%5Fencoding=UTF8&v=glance

Amazon says J&R Music has a copy.

Edit: I also have evidence that Gamespot also contacted a Capcom represenative and said copies are indeed returning to store shelves

http://www.gamespot.com/news/6145876.html

Therefore I conclude with this evidence that Planet Gamecube met with a person who knew NOTHING!

Karl Castaneda #2March 14, 2006

Upon further talks with Capcom, the article's been edited to show the situation's current status.

Please note the updated rumor article with an official statement from Capcom that, this time, does confirm that more units are being shipped due to demand. We are still hoping to get specifics on the new units (available date and price).

NinGurl69 *hugglesMarch 14, 2006

Fire the previous Capcom rep who updates with LIES.

jasonditzMarch 14, 2006

It could be an interesting strategy, but it's only going to work in the long run if the game's truly great, like this one is. If it can't live up to the hype, you're going to see a lot of quick sales and then a big sigh of disappointment. This game has those of us who already have it salivating over the prospect of a sequel coming stateside... I hope Capcom's got the good sense to make it happen.

Shin GallonMarch 14, 2006

They're putting some new Phoenix Wright episodes out stateside, actually...on CELL PHONES. You know, the bastard stepchild of portable gaming. Let's hope smarter heads prevail at Capcom and they get us some GBA translations or something.

PW has been on cell phones for ages in Japan. They have all three GBA games on them. And doing that IS smart. You make a lot of money with cell phone games, and this is one they know even snooty "real" gamers like us would be interested in.

KDR_11kMarch 15, 2006

Well, it's profitable in Japan but from what I've heard the US is a developing country when it comes to cellphones with phones being locked so they don't even run software that wasn't bought from your service provider (i.e. no free market for that).

GoldenPhoenixMarch 20, 2006

I managed to get ahold of PW on ebay (for only 35$ too), and I have to say I am very impressed. THe writing is witty, the cases are clever, and you actually have to think!

SheckyApril 15, 2006

Ok, so when exactly was this supposed to be showing up on shelves again... I've been checking local stores for weeks with no luck.

ruby_onixApril 15, 2006

Phoenix Wright's original print run was (I believe) 30,000 units. They shipped all of them, and 10,000 sold though in the first month (October), so Capcom figured their job was done, cancelled the game, and moved on.

It sold 5,000 in November, and another 10,000 in December, at which point the word-of-mouth on the game was really starting to spread (although it was positive from day-1). Especially after Christmas, when presents were opened.

The last 5,000 units were snapped up within the first few days of January, at which point the "shortage" became complete (although some people were having trouble finding the game long before then). Stores didn't order more units, because the game was cancelled, and they couldn't, so they just shrugged their shoulders and moved on. And Capcom was denying that there was a shortage or a need for a reprint, noting that it was "still selling" in January.

Then Capcom probably noticed that zero units were selling in February, or there was some sort of inter-division friction because of the threat of Americans storming the European launch of the game in March, because Capcom decided to un-cancel the game and do another print run.

I don't know how big the run was, but Capcom didn't advertise it's arrival, so most stores didn't order any copies, only the ones who were specifically pestering Capcom (or stores that kept up with videogame news) did, and yet the run still shipped out entirely.

NCSX got their copies on March 13, and the scattered stores that got copies probably got them on about the same day. I didn't see any local stores carrying the second run of the game, and most online stores who picked it up seemed to sell out in about a week. NCSX thought they had "several months" worth of supply, and they had it available longer than anyone else I know of, but they ran out as of yesterday, April 14.

NCSX is saying that a third run of the game has been produced, and will be arriving sometime next month.

Dear Capcom,

Want to make some big money for relatively little expense?

Make a Phoenix Wright game! You'll easily sell around 60,000 80,000 units in America, tons more in Japan, and all for a game that has almost zero animation, is completely sprite-based, and can't possible cost you that much to make!

....now...about Phoenix Write on the Rev...

~Carmine M. Red
Kairon@aol.com

SheckyApril 15, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: ruby_onix
NCSX is saying that a third run of the game has been produced, and will be arriving sometime next month.


And Capcom slowly becomes aware of this thing called capitalism, and supply and demand....

"Hey, look at this boss... everytime we ship out some of these games they _disappear_! It's like MAGIC!"

Thanks for the update ruby

KDR_11kApril 15, 2006

"But... how? How does it sell? It's not a sequel, it's not mature-rated, it's not based onb a movie? What are we doing wrong?"

ruby_onixJune 05, 2006

Quote

Originally posted by: ruby_onix
NCSX is saying that a third run of the game has been produced, and will be arriving sometime next month.

Seeing as someone just asked about Phoenix Wright in the Mailbag, now seems like a good time to bump this thread and point out that the "mid-May" date for the second batch of reprints was pushed back to "late May", which obviously didn't happen either, and a couple days ago NCSX reported that Capcom told them it was delayed again until "mid-June".

If this next reprint's anything like the last one, it's not going to be very big, and will only be carried by stores that know enough to be involved with it, FYI.

Infernal MonkeyJune 05, 2006

This game's release has been cancelled in Australia and New Zealand. It was meant to come out in March, then fell off the release lists forever. Why does Capcom hate their own games so much. face-icon-small-frown.gif

KDR_11kJune 05, 2006

They don't hate their games. They hate Australia. And it's all YOUR fault. Yes, you!

ruby_onixJune 17, 2006

FYI, the second reprint is out now.

Some places like NCSX and VideoGamesPlus.ca have it, but they're charging more than the original $30 MSRP. They say the higher price is coming from their distributors, but maybe they're just marking it up. NCSX is charging $40 plus shipping, and Videogames Plus is charging $45 Canadian (which is $40 American, but since their shipping is pretty low and you don't have to pay import fees, it's a reasonable price for Canadians).

Some places are charging $30, so if you hunt around you might get lucky.

ruby_onixJune 26, 2006

FYI, the second reprint is gone now. Actually, it was gone about a week ago.

NCSX said they got about as many copies as they did the last time, but this time it sold out in a week instead of a month. And they say that they were selling as many as 150 copies a day.

There were also a few reports of Phoenix Wright sightings in Canadian EB's (one of which, I can confirm).

NCSX says that Capcom is telling them that there will be a third reprinting of the game, currently set for mid-August.

SheckyJune 26, 2006

Like I said in the talkback thread... clearly they make these reprints by hand.

I was able to score a copy off this last reprint from walmart.com. The online store had them available for only half a day, shortly after NCSX got them in. Walmart list is $30.

SheckyJune 27, 2006

Forget waiting till August, looks like you can now buy this from Capcom directly:

Phoenix Wright; $30 Capcom Store

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