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Ubisoft’s “Kingdom Battle: Gold Edition” is Pure Pyrite

View Nelson Schneider's Profile

By Nelson Schneider - 11/18/18 at 03:50 PM CT

The Paleo-Switch experiment is still ongoing! I have owned my Switch for just short of a year, and have yet to connect it to the Internet for any reason. Granted, my library of Switch games is currently horrifically tiny, so it’s possible things will still fall apart as the experiment continues.

One company that it seems is desperately trying to deep-six the Internet-free Paleo-Switch is Ubisoft. Those French bastards decided to release a DLC expansion for their amazing TRPG collaboration with Nintendo, “Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle,” which I reviewed favorably early this year. The DLC, entitled “Donkey Kong Adventure,” is a side story for the game, starring everyone’s favorite tie-wearing gorilla, Reggie Fils-Aime DK. I was upset about missing out on this download-only content, but figured there was nothing I could do about it.

Then I read that the regulation-loving EU was receiving a special physical edition of “Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle” that would include the DLC as part of the bundle: “Mario + Rabbids: Kingdom Battle – Gold Edition.” After nearly going into cardiac arrest upon seeing the import price for this version of the game on Amazon Marketplace, I added it to my wishlist, bided my time, and waited patiently, as I do with so many things gaming related. When the game dropped to around $50 USD, I swallowed hard and bought it, hoping to delight in a complete version of the best TRPG in years.

When my game arrived from the UK, I eagerly opened it up, planning to pop the cartridge into my Switch immediately to play the new content. But then I saw something terrible: Pinned inside the game case was a slip of printed paper with Donkey Kong’s face on it as well as a serial code.

Yup! The “Gold Edition” isn’t gold at all, but a heaping helping of Fool’s Gold, since the extra content isn’t on the game card, but still requires a separate download from the Nintendo eShop. Hell, the game card included in the “Gold Edition” case is identical in every way to the original release! Not even the label is different!

Alas, I will not be playing “Donkey Kong Adventure,” as I will not compromise my principals or the Paleo-Switch Experiment and bow to what Nintendo and Ubisoft, and every other dumpster fire “AAA” publisher wants me to do. Well, at least I won’t be playing it until there’s a working Switch emulator out there. In this day and age of scummy publisher practices, ALWAYS double check that a “complete” edition actually is before you buy it!

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View dbarry_22's Profile


Wrote on11/27/18 at 03:49 PM CT

It appears you've learned a valuable lesson when it comes to video games. Unfortunately, I'm going to have to point out that you are the one in the wrong, not the AAA publishers, when it comes to this situation and the mistake you made.

At what point exactly did you come to the conclusion that a "gold edition" means that it's the complete game all physically on the disc/cartridge? That could not be farther from the truth and if you paid attention to the console world as much as the Steam world you would have already known that.

Example: A few months back I was able to get Middle Earth: Shadow of War Gold Edition from Best Buy for $15. That too has the Season Pass as a code inside the case. But, I expected that because the gold edtion of Shadow of War was released on the SAME DAY as the regular version of the game so it's quite obvious that it wouldn't hold all the DLC physically on the disc. Gold Editions do not equal complete editions.

Also, not that you have the capability, but the Nintendo EShop has had the gold edition of Mario + Rabbids for sale for a long, long time. If they can sell the "gold edtion" of the game completely digital it would not be wise to assume that the physical release of it wouldn't have a code in it.

And, if you bothered to do any research at all you would have noticed that the DLC is in the form of a code and not on the cartridge. Here's the link to Ubisoft's website describing the gold edition you bought and it's clear as day. It took me one google search and like 2 minutes to find this.

I've learned a long time ago that if you really want a complete physical edition of a game you better do a lot of research before buying. Generally speaking if you see the words "Season Pass" on the cover art it is not all physical. Gold Edition does not mean a complete version either. So far the only phrases I can somewhat trust for this generation of consoles are either "complete edition" or "definitive edition". Those appear to contain all the content physically but I could be wrong about that.

At first I thought the complete version of Horizon Zero Dawn wasn't all physical because there was a code inside but fortunately that was just a code to the Art of Horizon Zero Dawn and the complete game is actually on the disc.

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