Just like the previous Metal Gear Solid games, we go bonkers when it's close to release day. The prequel to Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain is planned for a March 18 release but folks over in the Philippines was able to get the game as early as March 14. Why? Heck, if only I had the answer to that one.
On March 14, Datablitz, considered as the go-to place to get your original video games, announced on their Facebook that Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes was now available for purchase.
While everybody was ecstatic that the latest Metal Gear Solid game is now out, we wondered how it was released almost a week before release.
Games One Gadget, or also known as iTech, also announced the game is now on sale in their branches on the same day.
WHATS THE BIG DEAL??
I'm sure you're wondering at this point what's the big deal? Yes, it's a good thing we get the game a week earlier than the rest of the world, but did they really break the street date(Release date)? That's not good for the game industry taking the Philippines seriously.
Products always have marketing strategies and they have a reason a specific product will be released on a given date. Let's say Konami isn't happy with official retails breaking release dates, they wouldn't be that excited to do any future business here. This isn't the first time, and it probably won't be that big of a deal, but this would provide a bad image for the community here. If they do have permission to release a game that early from the publishers and developers, awesome, but what if they didn't? These kinds of moves from retailers can ruin the possibility of having video game developers or publishers ever considering the Philippines a possible location to market their games locally. Simply giving them problems like breaking street dates won't make us good friends with them in the long run. Wouldn't it be awesome to have launch parties from the developers/publishers or proper pre-order incentives, yes?
Maybe it was done to maximize sales - Releasing the product before any official review of the game was released would provide a higher payout since everybody's purchase decision is based on the publisher's marketing and their love of the franchise, not from first-hand experience from other players/reviewers.
Another point is -- It's very erratic on how video games are released in the Philippines. We sometimes get games earlier than others, sometimes a week late, or we get it on the said date with the rest of the world. So where can we get definite information? Release date was the best reference point, but it looks like that can't be the definite source now thanks to this.
When the game was available(March 14) in official stores, no review of the game was released, the game is not even released in Japan and the rest of the world, and the digital copy of the game is not yet available on Xbox Live and PSN. You can't even use the online features or redeem your DLC code because it's not even out. Kotaku just reported that the game was even delayed in Austrailia and New Zealand.
Datablitz's Facebook post on their pre-orders even promotes the known release date.
There's no definite answer to how Metal Gear Solid V: Ground Zeroes was released. We asked Datablitz through Facebook but it was a longshot since I doubt their community manager would bother giving an answer. Worth a try.
That, and I asked when the Xbox 360 version will be available because it is currently only available on PS3 and PS4.
Nothing to worry about? This is a game that's only around 2 hours long anyways. Or do you have a theory to why we we're special enough to get the game before the rest of the world? Sound off on the comments below.