Nothing kicks up a fuss quite like a pint-sized Mario parted from his beloved Yoshi. Nothing perhaps, except a new Nintendo title with the personalized merchandise to match. Announced back in April of 2013, Yoshi’s New Island once again finds the intrepid T-Rex — or rather ‘Yoshisaur – escorting miniature Marios from one side of a dangerous isle to another.
So far, so standard practice then, though the news of a Yoshi-themed bundle does make for a refreshing change. Unveiled earlier this week, the pack – which appears courtesy of a leaked product listing at British retailer Base — seems to feature the title alongside a custom-finished 3DS XL.
While no pictures of the pack itself have surfaced (most outlets are currently utilizing a fan-made mockup) IGN was able to confirm a concrete release date and price point. Slated to arrive on March 14, 2014 — the same street date as individual copies of Yoshi’s New Island — the bundle will retail at a British figure of £199.99 (roughly $330). Luckily for American gamers, that sum is likely to be heavily discounted in the States, with an eventual list price of $200-250 appearing more plausible.
Base.com’s unauthorized listing represents just the latest in a long line of mercantile faux-pas for the industry, many of which tend to emanate from smaller, regional retailers. Given the store’s focus on multiple forms of media, it’s quite possible the mistake comes from a lack of familiarity with strict gaming street dates – after all most DVDs, CDs and books are well known to their audiences in the weeks and months prior to their initial listings.
On the other hand, Base could be attempting to angle for hits – generating free publicity via website traffic – and continuing to do so with little-to-no threat of recrimination from Nintendo. While most fans will likely be non-plussed by the behavior, these kinds of PR stunts — if they are in fact pre-planned – tend to strip away at a product’s surprise factor, making any later announcements feel like a comparative damp squib.
Just how will this Yoshi-branded handheld appear? What kind of designs would you like to see adorn Nintendo’s portable platform? Do retail leaks enhance or extinguish a product’s surprise factor? Let us know in the comments below, and be sure to check in with all of the latest 3DS family news, right here on Game Rant.
Yoshi’s New Island will be available from March 14, 2014, for the Nintendo 3DS. A custom-themed 3DS XL bundle will also launch alongside the title, priced at £199.99 (roughly $330, though likely to retail at a much lower price point).
Follow Sam on Twitter @GamingGoo.