Frontwing has announced they’ve cancelled the PS Vita version of the Kickstarter-funded English release for Sharin no Kuni: The Girl Among the Sunflowers.
The news was posted on a backers-only Kickstarter update (spotted on reddit.com/r/visualnovels, via RiceDigital), citing the unfinished development of the PS Vita version, due to a third-party development contractor.
It’s worth pointing out that the PS Vita port was a Kickstarter stretch goal, where the campaign needed to hit $120,000 over its funding goal of $80,000 for the main English localization on Windows PC. As such, Frontwing will be refunding, canceling, or exchanging PS Vita backers for the PC version.
Here’s the full blurb regarding the PS Vita version being cancelled:
We had repeatedly asked the development company for a clear deadline for the mastering of the VITA version in order to manufacture the cartridges by the end of the year. We set a manufacturing schedule for production through discussions with Eastasiasoft, shared this information with the development company, and the development company responded that they expected to meet this deadline.
Until the very last moment, the project team still believed that the game production was going to finish and enter the manufacturing stage, but in the end the multiple issues that kept appearing during development and the additional time required to fix every one of them resulted in the developer not being able to meet the deadline discussed with EAS. We are currently in negotiations about the liability issues derived from the failure of the development contractor to meet the delivery date.
Even after last year’s delivery date had passed, throughout the month of January the project team had been studying and searching for alternative methods through various channels, including EAS, but in February it became clear that we would have to abandon the production of the VITA version, and this is why we are making this announcement.
One thing we would like to make clear is that the schedule and development estimates that we have reported in updates and comments until now were never false: they were always based on the information that was shared with us in our meetings with the development company that we outsourced the project to. We believed that we would be able to deliver the VITA game version to everyone until the very end.
As you can see, the direct cause of the cancellation of the development of the VITA game version was the overdue delivery date of the development contractor, but the final responsibility for the situation, including the management of the contractor, lies with the project team, or to be more precise, Frontwing, who is the main organizer of the project and in charge of the development management.
Sharin no Kuni: The Girl Among the Sunflowers was originally released for Windows PC back in 2005 in Japan, then on Xbox 360, PS3, PSP, and Android. The English localization for the Windows PC release is on track for a March 2021 release.