It's a rare thing for someone as prestigious and recognized as Shigeru Miyamoto to use the official Wii U Facebook page and make a message about a game for the fans. Well, that just happened recently when Miyamoto had to explain to the general public exactly why they're delaying Star Fox Zero for the Wii U.
The post isn't too long and mostly sticks to the point. It's simply titled “A Message from Mr. Miyamoto regarding Star Fox Zero”. The Facebook post explains that Miyamoto – heading up the production on the Wii U exclusive – decided to delay the game from out of its late November release and move it to an early first quarter 2016 window.
According to Miyamoto, he explains why the game was delayed, writing...
[…] we felt that the development had been progressing well, we now believe that we will need a little more time to work on areas such as the unprecedented discovery that we want players to experience in the game by using two screens, and further polishing the level designs and perfecting the tone of the cut scenes.
He actually started the post making it known that this would be a very big decision for Nintendo and I absolutely could not agree more.
While brushing up the cutscenes and working on the “unprecedented discovery” of using two screens to play the game sound like fair marks for delaying a title, one has to wonder how badly this will affect what little momentum the Wii U has left for the holiday season?
Previously both Star Fox Zero and The Legend of Zelda were to help give the Wii U a massive boost. Star Fox Zero was originally planned to release this past summer – likely taking momentum from E3 to help bolster sales for the slow second quarter and give the Wii U a good lead-in to the holiday quarter where The Legend of Zelda will undoubtedly clean-up in the sales department. That's an easy 5 million SKUs in one quarter once it finally releases.
However, Nintendo made the decision to delay The Legend of Zelda, presumably into 2016 in order to make more room to implement and fine tune various gameplay features. That alone was a huge blow to the Wii U's holiday line-up.
As it stands, they no only have big hitters such as Xenoblade Chronicles X to fall back on, but that's looking more and more niche as Nintendo has done little to properly market the game here in North America, and Devil's Third. Valhalla Software's third-person shooter did not review well despite being a generically fun looking shooter game. This only leaves Xenoblade Chronicles X as a possible marketable exclusive to flesh out the holiday season for the Wii U, and Super Mario Maker, which is currently available right now.
Nevertheless, Miyamoto assured fans that the wait would not be long and that they're working hard to get the game out of the door...
Star Fox Zero is going to bring new game play and experiences that take it far beyond the framework established by Star Fox 64. All the members of the development team are doing our best so that the final product will not betray your expectations.
Stay tuned in for more info as the long wait for Q1 2016 begins.