Wii U region lock fears for Sony PS4, Xbox 720

By Alan Ng - Sep 26, 2012

If you are thinking of pre-ordering the Nintendo Wii U console at the end of November, you may want to be aware of one notable issue that could affect the way you purchase your software titles.

A lot of people will have already expected this to be the case, but just to make it crystal clear – the Wii U is definitely going to be region locked, meaning that you cannot import titles from say Japan and play them on your US or UK based console.

Seasoned Nintendo veterans will be well aware of this, since every Nintendo console since the DS has also been region locked, but it will still be a shock to those unaware gamers who were hoping that the console would support any disc put into the system. Do you support Nintendo’s decision to maintain their strict policy regarding region locking, or do you wish that they would be more lenient like Sony and Microsoft?

As most of you are aware, the PS3 and Xbox 360 are not bound by region locking by default, but games can still be locked down to a particular region if a specific developer requests it. The question is though, will Sony and Microsoft continue with this trend for next-gen consoles, or will they follow Nintendo and block all routes to importing software?

Gamers will obviously hope that this doesn’t become the case, as there is no better feeling than finding that hidden Japanese gem and playing it on your console from any location. We doubt Nintendo’s Wii U sales will suffer from a result of the region lock as many expected it, but the same may not be the case with the PS4 and Xbox 720.

How does the Wii U being region locked affect you? Is it bad enough that you are now planning to cancel your pre-order, or are you more worried about the fact that the PS4 and Xbox 720 may be region locked as well?

Follow us on Facebook, Twitter or Google Plus.

Also See: Black Friday Deals for Nintendo DS XL, 3DS, and 2DS

  • jgallagher

    As I only buy games from local game stores on any system. On through their online stone. So this means not a dame thing to me. Besides games in those regions are in those languages. So that means even less to me

  • David Thany

    Don’t care if it’s region locked as I’ve never imported a game. I own every console (PS3, Wii, 360) and there’s never a shortage of games to play in my region, I actually have a long list of games I still need to catch up on on each system.

    I don’t have a Wii U pre-ordered yet as I waited too long and they all sold out. But I’m hoping to pick one up as soon as I can.
    As for PS4, I’m seriously considering not getting another Sony system unless they show me it won’t be over priced and they get their act together as a company, I want Sony to innovate not imitate Their me too attitude is driving me nuts, as they’ve done nothing but copy Nintendo, from the Move, to the Kart racing, to the PS Allstars game and their Vita/PS3 combo that they cry can do what the Wii U does. Just show me what they can do that others can’t..
    I actually work on Xbox games and have some smart glass projects on the horizon. Microsoft follows Nintendo’s lead as well but not nearly as close as Sony does. As for getting a new Xbox, I think I’ll wait a couple years as the first 2 360’s I bought both red ringed.

  • mrjohn

    Wait the 360 is not Region locked? I know PS3 is not, but when Iooked up online 360 is region lock,
    also so what if its region lock, hell it cost alot of money just to get a game imported and why would you want a game imported if they sell the exact same game else where, and I know there might be fun Japan games but im not going to shell out over 80$ for a import game that I might or might not like, and prob cant read, I have a hard time paying 60$ for just a regular game, I always wait till the price goes down or till its on sale,

    and If someone really wants to buy a Import game to play, they can always import the system from Japan, it will be pricy but if you have the money to get a imported game, im sure you can get a import system, this is not a big deal, and I just double check and the 360’s are region locked, IDK if there are any games that you can play but from double checking so far you cant play any game thats in a different region,

    All I been hearing is what the Cons are of this system, thing is those cons are not that bad, hell at least Nintendo is letting us play use games and our old Wii games, there still that rumor going on that the PS4 and 720 wont let you play any use games or old games, and you might have to be connected online all the time just to play a game, if that happens I bet alot of people will turn to Nintendo even dev’s cuz I dont think many people are able or going to shell out that much money just for a game and a system,

    Also the price of the Wii u is awesome I think, old PS3 systems are going for like 250 and new ones are about 299 depending on what model you get, the Wii U being a whole new system is about 299 for basic, and 350 for a deluxe, and now sony is going to start selling a Super Slim PS3, for 299, Hell no I wont paid that just for a smaller system, the fact that a New console is coming out for the same price, I already pre order the Wii u, but no way in hell Im buying a Super Slim PS3 (SS PS3) for the same price with old hardware, and I also been seeing articles about the Wii U processor is underpower, I read the first article about the dev’s that are working on worriers hyper, and they said that its new so all they have to do is keep going over it, and the game will not be like the one people have tryed, it should be better, and thats with any new hardware that it takes time to get use too.

    Remember the PS2, alot of those games were way behind, then after a while of Dev’s messing with the everything, those games came out awesome, as for with the 360 and PS3, I played the first games that were release on those systems and they were not much better then the PS2 and Xbox just a little more updated, NOW we have games that are just crazy cool, in playing and looks,

    THE Wii U will be the same way, once they understand how the hardware works, there will be games that are just awesome. also the Wii U has a crazy amount of RAM for a Console, while 1 GB of ram is for gaming the other 1 GB is for system use the PS3 and 360 use about 500 something MB of RAM, and also how can the Wii U be underpower when it has a GPU that deliver better graphics, but people are already hating it cuz one person said the CPU was a little weak, but they have to get use to it, I know others came out saying the same thing but if it was way too weak, there would be almost no Dev’s working on it, meaning its strong enough to match the PS3 or 360, just weaker then they thought, but not underpower weak, once they understand it, They will get better on games.

  • It’s one thing to region lock “Standard definition” Virtual Console and original Wii games cause of PAL 50HZ vs NTSC 60HZ conflicts but Wii U HD games ad 3DS don’t have a 60HZ and 50HZ and resolution difference justify the region lock.

  • Ninja Dan Bear

    The Xbox 360 is region locked bar a few titles. Seems like another bit of propoganda. Wii U pre-ordered. Looking forward to it.

  • John

    It’s true, the article tells prospective buyers to look for details of the ps4 and 720, but that wii u is already doomed so will sony and microsoft come to the rescue.

  • Storm Walsh

    @ Anonymous : Did you even read the article before embarking on your fanboi rant? The article is stating a FACT about the WiiiiiU, and then goes on to poise a question about region locking for the next PS/Xbox. If anything, this postulation is floating a cloud of negativity over 2 consoles which we haven’t even seen yet. Calm down.

    • osiris

      ne seri govna

  • Anonymous

    Why is this site ALWAYS linking bad news about the Wii U into positive news for PS4 and 720? We don’t know a thing about those systems yet.

    I’ve never heard so much negativity for a system before release in my life. You hypocrites bash Nintendo for making gimmicks but now MS is doing the same thing its fine? Hypocrites much. Go embrace Kinect just because Microsoft tell you to.

    The worst thing about this region locking is Wii U will get a lot of great games in Japan which won’t be localized (possibly Monolith’s game) but I’d rather have a region locked console than a preowned blocking console. Were it not for the preowned market I never would have gotten Neptunia.