Nintendo has been under some heat for localization efforts of late, with smaller changes in Xenoblade Chronicles X getting a lot of commentary, to an internet backlash over Fire Emblem: Fates localization efforts, and most recently over rumored changes to Bravely Second: End Layer. The changes there include some costume changes, and much more controversially changes to how the game resolves side quests by removing the bad endings for them. While Nintendo is yet to comment on why Tomahawk was replaced by Hawkeye or the costume changes, they did release a statement to Nintendo Life:
Regarding changes made to Bravely Second: End Layer for worldwide release
Based on feedback received after Bravely Second: End Layer’s release in Japan, the development team at Square Enix, in conjunction with Silicon Studio, decided to implement a number of revisions to the game for the purpose of improving its quality and creating a more enjoyable product.
One such change affects the game’s optional side quests, where players encounter a conflict between two opposing parties and choose which party to side with.
When the game was released in Japan, each side quest would end with the team lamenting the decision they made, regardless of the player’s decision. This was intended to help players empathise with the characters’ situation, but overwhelming feedback from players indicated that they felt an unsatisfying disconnect between their intentions and the characters’ reactions. In response, these side quest endings were amended to show the party readily coming to terms with their actions in a manner that does not cause the player undue regret for their decisions.
These changes do not affect the gameplay or the course of events in the game, and were made with the intention of improving the game experience for players.
This statement seems to say that the issue was not one of region but instead a game play idea that was really poorly received and attempting to ‘fix’ it some for the international release. It may also have some to do with western players generally being more critical of linear stories that made them decide to spend the time and money to make this change.
One thing that really stood out is the fact that the changes “do not affect… the course of events” when it quite literally does by changing how the quests resolve in order. That seems somewhat odd and hypocritical.
What do you think of Nintendo’s Statement? Does it address concerns you had with the release? What are your thoughts on the whole situation? Share your thoughts in the comments below!