About a year ago, Nintendo announced that DSi-enhanced cartiridges would be region locked; that is, playable only in the region that they were produced for. Japanese games only for Japan, North American for North America, European for Europe. Although this has now been confirmed by IGN, it is worth recalling Nintendo’s comments concerning the reasoning behind this lockdown.
“DSi is region locked because DSi embeds net communication functionality within itself,” Nintendo said as quoted by IGN,“and we are intending to provide net services specifically tailored for each region.”
Is this a hint of more things to come? We’ve seen the beginnings of this with Facebook integration to the DSi, but are we going to see more stuff region specific? I can’t help but remember Miyamoto’s talk of the Tokyo subway application, and what similar kinds of applications could mean in North America and Europe. Whatever is coming, however, one thing is certain: the age of import gaming is coming to an end, unless you plan on buying a Japanese DSi to play all those Japan-only releases.