Sonic Team seems to be doing its best to bring everything it has in its portfolio to Nintendo's Gamecube, but if Yuji Naka's words recently are any indication there could be trouble in paradise, with the developer saying that its upcoming port of Phantasy Star Online may not actually come with the... well, 'Online' part.
You're probably as confused as we were when we first heard this, but Naka-san explained that the reason for potentially foregoing a key part of PSO's gameplay on Gamecube will be down to Nintendo dragging its feet on releasing the online modem peripheral required for online play.
"I'm hoping that the Gamecube version will [release] at the same time in all countries, although it really depends on where Nintendo is going to launch its online services," Naka-san said in an interview. "There are other technical problems as well, but that's what I'm aiming for.
"PSO is designed to be an online game, although there is a chance the game will come out before online [play through a Gamecube] is ready."
Naka-san then went to detail the new four-player split screen mode in PSO for Gamecube, a brand new feature that allows for offline multiplayer gaming. "There is a possibility for the game to come out first and people will still be able to play multi-player without the online service," in this way.
Nintendo, for its part, hasn't said anything new about when its online modem peripheral is due to come out. Bit frustrating seeings as they have a partner in Sonic Team literally waiting for the thing to come out. But it sounds like Naka and co are on the case. We'll let you know if we hear anything more.
Source: Planet Gamecube