Greetings, dear readers. Maybe you’ve heard of a game called La-Mulana - it’s a PC game that came out in 2005 over in Japan, made by a three-man independent group known as Nigoro. They wanted a truly challenging game, one to wrack the mind, test the skill, push endurance and care to the limit. Let’s say there’s a pit in front of you - in other games, you might jump down, because you won’t be punished. In La-Mulana, you could very well die or be stuck without a certain item, forcing a restart, basically fitting the bill of an old ‘Nintendo Hard’ game and then some. It harkened heavily to games like Maze of Galious(which even gets its own little side area), which relied heavily on trial-and-error, experimentation and putting up with abuse. That’s not everything, though - they didn’t just use any old engine for La-Mulana, they actually made sure to make the game entirely within the constraints of the MSX(a mid 80s standardized home computer), from graphics to music alike. After it received an English patch as well as quite a lot of good attention, Nigoro worked with Nintendo via Nicalis to make a WiiWare version, complete with new graphics, new sub-weapons, the whole nine yards - and it came to release in Japan in 2011.
The bad news comes in the form of a tweet from Nicalis themselves, which states that they have decided to no longer pursue localization of La-Mulana for NA or Europe. This is actually kind of jarring, because the post-lotcheck data from NoA/NoE or as Nigoro puts it, the ‘Master Data’, was actually given to Nicalis last Thursday. Nigoro even commented on this themselves, “WiiWare version: The master data for NOA and NOE was handed to our publisher, Nicalis. After that, we haven’t received any reports. So, we have no idea when the release date is determined.”
So basically, after receiving the master data, Nicalis goes dark for three days, then suddenly pops up and declares that localization is utterly canceled. It almost sounds wrong, like an excuse about losing a master record before it’s used to make more copies or something. I can’t say for certain exactly why Nicalis has decided to do so, but for the time being they haven’t released any other information aside that of the cancellation. This is a pretty major bummer for me, because this is one of the games I was really looking forward to, having thoroughly played the PC version - I can only hope Nigoro didn’t enter into a nasty little contract with Nicalis that was blurred by language that suddenly winds up with a change of copy ownership… it’s unlikely due to the sheer amount of animosity it’d turn on Nicalis, but the timing is so weird that one just can’t help but imagine the worst.