After months of speculation, Advance Wars 1+2: Reboot Camp finally has a release date. As indicated on Nintendo’s store page, it is coming on April 21, 2023.
This ends a one year wait since Nintendo announced that they were delaying the game because of ‘recent world events’, on March 9 of last year. Nintendo did not name said event, but it was quite clear that they were referring to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.
Russia’s invasion had started on February 24, 2022, mere weeks before Nintendo’s announcement. While the company did not elaborate further on the reasons for the delay, it was clear that they had taken the situation seriously enough that they did not want to be seen as making light of the situation.
In the following months, speculation and rumors on when the game’s release would be scheduled would simmer. As some gamers had noted, if Nintendo were planning to wait for the end of the war to release the game, it was likely an impractical choice. The Nintendo Switch has been on the market for over five years at this point, and while Nintendo has not announced its successor, the window to release the game when consumers would still be interested was starting to shrink.
But also, in the months following it, Ukrainian game developers would make themselves heard. Many of these developers were themselves making video games about war, or about Ukraine or Russia. Most notably, S.T.A.L.K.E.R. 2: Heart of Chornobyl saw a name correction, changing the English translation of the city’s name from Chernobyl to Chornobyl to reflect its Ukrainian spelling.
In this atmosphere, it became clear that the ongoing war did not preclude the release of video games about war, and we may in fact see future games that would tackle the topic of this war itself.
Last week we reported on a rumor that Advance Wars 1+2: Reboot Camp would be getting released soon, as a Walmart employee revealed they had started receiving marketing materials on their location. Walmart themselves would go on to debunk the rumor completely, pointing out that no pictures of the marketing materials were taken.
That debunking seems pointless now that we have a set release date for the game. Advance Wars 1+2: Reboot Camp is Nintendo’s first revisiting of the franchise in 15 years. The last prior release was Advance Wars: Days of Ruin on the Nintendo DS, a risky departure in the franchise that did not pay off.
So it makes sense that Nintendo’s reentry to the game involves a remaster of the GBA games that first made it a hit worldwide. (The arguably true first game in the franchise is Famicom Wars, released all the way back in 1988.) They also had a great choice in Wayforward to produce this remaster, as the studio was well known for a similar cartoony style with their original Shantae games. Wayforward is also well known in the industry as a solid support studio, and a specialist on 2D games.