Ninja Gaiden "coming out in February"
Tecmo's John Inada refutes delay rumors, but reiterates the Xbox game still has no firm release date.
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The upside of publishing a game as eagerly anticipated as Ninja Gaiden is you know it will debut to massive sales. The downside is that you have to deal with massive interest in the form of gamers'--and reporters'--constant inquires about its release date.
Fielding those inquiries is the lot of John Inada, Tecmo Inc.'s director general manager and of sales and marketing. Following several game vendors' tweaking of Ninja Gaiden's release date--which has shifted from 2/10 to 2/17 on GameStop and 2/23 on EBGames--Inada felt obligated to address a fresh wave of delay rumors. "Retailers typically set their own 'expected release date' based on our status report," he told GameSpot. However, the game's official release date still hasn't been nailed down. "Unfortunately, we can not give you a specific date now except to say that the game is coming out in February as we have been saying all along," said Inada.
As to the root cause of Ninja Gaiden's nebulous ship date, Inada cited the large amount of last-minute fine-tuning such a high-level Xbox Live title requires. "Both Microsoft certification team and Team Ninja are working around the clock to bring this highly anticipated game to the consumers as quickly as possible without any compromise on the quality," he said. Inada also revealed that Ninja Gaiden has become a victim of its own success. "Initial order quantity by the retailers is much higher than we had anticipated, and this may add extra days to the normal manufacturing lead time."