Secret of Mana, released in 1993, was one of the best games for the Super NES. Now Square Enix has announced Seiken Densetsu Collection — a re-release for Nintendo Switch that contains Secret of Mana, its prequel (for the Game Boy) and its sequel (also for the SNES). All three are excellent games and this would be a terrific title for new Switch owners to play while they wait for the library to grow. There are a few problems preventing this collection from escaping Japan, however.
For one thing, the original Mana game wasn’t called a Mana game anywhere else. For purposes of marketing, it was renamed “Final Fantasy Adventure” in the US and “Mystic Quest” in Europe. It might not be THAT big a problem, but then there’s this: the fact that the third Mana game never came out anywhere besides Japan. There isn’t an English ROM Square can just throw in there, aside from the fan translation, and they can’t really use that.
Converting a game to another language is an involved process and Square may hesitate at the expense. But there is precedence for such things happening: when Final Fantasy Anthology was brought over for Playstation 1 back in 2001, it contained a new translation for Final Fantasy VI and the first-ever English version of Final Fantasy V. The same thing happened with Final Fantasy Origins in 2003 (though the first two games didn’t have much text to begin with).
Fans have successfully convinced Square to release games before, including Mana games — an English version of Adventure of Mana was put out for PS Vita after fan demand convinced them. If you love the early Mana games as much as I do, it’s time to start begging! Let Square know how much you want this collection!
Even if our pleas fall on deaf ears, there’s another option: Nintendo Switch is not region-locked. That means any Japanese game will play on a US system, no modding or hacking required. I’ve played the Mana series enough times that I don’t really need to read the text, but it would be nice.