Hot off the heels of the news that upcoming Shin Megami Tensei x Fire Emblem would be set in the modern world, more details have come from the same Hobby Consolas interview that shed light on Nintendo’s sales expectations if they were to make a home console Fire Emblem entrant in the future. Specifically, for a possible FE:U to make financial sense to Nintendo, they would need approximately 700,000 sales at full price.
There is something to be said about sales expectations this low. When other publishers are producing AAA titles and requiring at least 5 million sales at full price just to break even, Nintendo would not need the same early adoption in order to turn a nifty profit with what is considered one of the best JRPG franchises in the industry.
Keep in mind that Fire Emblem: Awakening needed 250,000 sales to be considered successful and to justify continuing the series. They not only broke that mark but have sold well over 900,000 units to date worldwide, not including digital sales, which Nintendo reported at over 80,000 in North America alone as of April 2013. It also does not include sales of the special edition 3DS XL bundle. Needless to say, Fire Emblem: Awakening has become a smash hit and a huge system seller for the 3DS platform.
That bears the question, could a possible FE:U enjoy the same success and dramatically spur Wii U sales? That remains to be seen, but considering the success of the mobile title and the new series and genre fans that it garnered, all signs point to yes. Then there is the fact that it would be an exclusive title for the Wii U published by Nintendo. Because Nintendo titles typically sell well beyond their first six months after release (first few years in many cases), would it necessarily need to hit that mark right away or throughout the platform life cycle? One would think that as long as the game is developed with the same care and attention that Intelligent Systems applied to FE:A, it would become an evergreen title, selling well into the end of the generation.
There is some more information on Nintendo’s software expectations of Awakening. According to them, Nintendo wanted around 80% of users to be able to complete the game, which is the reason for the inclusion of a casual difficulty setting. The game can be completed without using the pair-up mechanic that gives stat bonuses to characters who pair with specific others regularly. Apparently, the game is exactly the same in all regions. They consider the fanbase of the Fire Emblem series to be purists with the hope that Awakening should attract the general gaming population as well.
That said, we know that Intelligent Systems is currently working with Atlus on SMTxFE, and while we had an enormous detail come out of the Hobby Consolas interview, more has been revealed. Namely why SMTxFE was considered for full home console treatment rather than as a DLC pack for FE:A. Here’s what Yagamami-san had to say:
When preparing a DLC, you should base your game on the original. It is supposed to be content for theirs fans. If you want for them something different, you can disappoint them. This collaboration should be viewed as a separate one, intended for a different public. Thus, this crossover and DLC are very different things in nature.
It should be understood that also in the interview the idea for a Fire Emblem game set in the modern world was what spurred the collaboration between the two developers, so considering it a new game that incorporates characters from both that encompass a vast timeline seems a more fitting treatment.
How do you feel about the possibility of a future Wii U Fire Emblem? Let us know in the comments below!