Nintendo DS will launch in North America in late November, according to unconfirmed reports quoting publishing sources at the Ziff-Davis Electronic Gaming Summit.
Third-party publishers are reportedly "confident" that the portable will be on store shelves in North America in time for Thanksgiving and the traditional start of the US Christmas rush.
This seems to tally with what Japanese retail sources were saying in mid-July. At the time, Eurogamer's sister-site gamesindustry.biz reported comments indicating that the DS would launch in the US on November 11th at $179.95 (145) following a November 4th launch at 19,000 yen (140) in Japan.
However, reports this week also had publishers citing concerns over the as-yet unknown launch line-up, with some worried that most of the system's big titles were expected in Q1 2005. Japanese retail sources in July suggested that 11 titles would be released by the end of 2004.
But, in the absence of official confirmation from Nintendo, for the moment it's impossible to measure exactly how things will unfold. The last word from the platform holder was that the DS would be released in Japan and North America in "late 2004". When it was unveiled at E3, the charismatic Reggie Fils-Aime told the audience that the system would be available in Europe in Q1 2005.
Recently, Nintendo has confirmed the final name, logo and design of the unit, and also unveiled a list of titles in development in Japan and the West, including big names from the likes of Electronic Arts, Square Enix, Capcom, Konami and others.
The Nintendo DS' main perceived rival, the Sony PlayStation Portable, is expected in a similar timeframe.