Ben Herman, who runs SNK Playmore USA, is almost as excited about Neo-Geo games on the Virtual Console as we are. In a recent interview, he discussed SNK's VC plans and Nintendo's operation of the system in general.
According to Herman, who, of course, can't give details, SNK expects to release "a certain limited number of titles per month," which is enough to have us cheering, because that's a lot more than the N64 is getting. It's also a much brisker release schedule than the Neo-Geo ever had. The best news, in our opinion? Herman is interested in the Virtual Console as a means of releasing lesser-known and niche games.
SNK isn't sure yet whether the Neo-Geo games on the VC will be the AES home versions or the MVS arcade cartridges. We had no idea there was a difference!
Of course, there has to be bad news, and it's kind of big: Herman says that Nintendo is not letting publishers add online functionality to games, VC or retail, and probably will continue this restriction throughout 2007.
Herman goes on to talk about Nintendo's console library, saying that Nintendo has all of the code for third-party NES and SNES games and needs only permission to release them. Which means Konami officially has no excuse for the fact that we haven't played Castlevania III: Dracula's Curse on the Wii yet. Konami, you're on notice!
[Update: added the sad, sad news about online games.]