Remember when Nintendo's Perrin Kaplan told Wired News that first-party Wii games would be free of regional shackles? Well, it turns out that she never received the internal memo stating the exact opposite: The Wii will not be region-free. Not even a little. Some confusion arose after David "there's no DS redesign" Yarnton told UK press that the system would indeed be region-locked. Were Kaplan's comments misinterpreted somehow? After all, having region-free games and a region-free system are two very different things. We took the issue to a Nintendo US spokesperson and received the clarification we desired, unpleasant as it was.
"We've heard conflicting reports from lots of folks out there, but can tell you that Wii will be region encoded, as will first-party software."