Despite seeing a side-by-side release with the Japanese version, the Chinese and Korean versions of Shin Megami Tensei III: Nocturne HD will not see Raidou Kuzunoha and its black cat sidekick, Gotou, in their release.
The pronouncement came with the recent website update in both the Chinese and Korean website for the game. Natives in either languages will see a disclaimer at the bottom of the page stating the exclusion of the two Raidou Kuzunoha figures.
No Explanation Given
While the notices have been very explicit in its statement, it did not leave an explanation as to why that’s the case. Furthermore, it also did not mention how the developers are planning to compensate for the omission.
To those who had played the Japan-exclusive Maniax Chronicle version back on the PS2, they’d recall Raidou and Gotou as playing significant role in it. Which, for the Western audiences, would be equivalent to Dante’s role in the original Nocturne on the same platform.
In comparison, both the original and the Maniax Chronicle are pretty much the same game. Except that one has Devil May Cry’s Dante in it while the other has Raidou Kuzunoha series’s Raidou and Gotou.
Harkens Back History
The issue with Raidou Kuzunoha and his partner draws back history and is not the first with the upcoming HD remaster of Nocturne. Those who are up-to-speed with the franchise’s releases would also recount the Raidou Kuzunoha costume DLC’s removal from Persona 5. Again, for both the Chinese and Korean versions of the game.
Going further back in history, we’d also see how Devil Summoner: Soul Hackers for the 3DS never got localized for other Asian market. Like Nocturne HD, this handheld title also features Raidou Kuzunoha in it.
Going further still are the two games themselves that originally featured the two characters. Games that did not see the light of day in the aforementioned Asian countries.
Without saying a word, it is pretty clear that there’s a love-and-hate relationship going on between the three Asian cultures. One that, while seemingly harmonious, remains troubled by their dark past. Something that was, unfortunately, symbolized by characters whose very portrayal touches on the bad side of certain groups of people.
The issue might seem trivial for the rest of the world to share similar gripes over the matter. But for these countries, it seems to be so big a deal. Big enough to warrant a restriction to make the release possible in both nations.
Image used courtesy of IGN/YouTube Screenshot