For those in Europe, the wait is almost over–the Amiibo will be released on December 11 for 14.99 EUR/10.99 GBP. Those in North America will have to wait a bit longer, as it won’t be out until January 8 for $12.99. The decision to arrange things in this way is described in a blog post as “agonizing,” but was necessary to avoid running into supply issues that other Amiibo figures have had.
“[P]roduction difficulties forced us to choose between rushing to ship a tiny, insufficient number of Amiibo units before Christmas, or ship a good healthy supply of stock to North America just after Christmas,” Yacht Club explained. “We’ve received hundreds of emails bemoaning the difficulty in finding some of your favorite Amiibo, racing for a preorder window, issues with scalpers, having trouble unlocking the new features you want to play; so, we made the decision to launch the Amiibo in January so there would be enough units available.
“Hopefully, this later date will make buying a Shovel Knight Amiibo easy and fair for everyone.”
Yacht Club goes on to recommend that you wait to buy a figure released in the territory you live in. It says this won’t be a limited run and that there should be plenty, “so please don’t feel pressured into importing or buying from scalpers.” Furthermore, you won’t actually be able to use any of the in-game features until the Amiibo has been released in your region.
It’d be hard to blame anyone for being in a rush to get their hands on one. Whereas Amiibo figures sometimes unlock somewhat insignificant things in other games, this one adds a brand-new cooperative mode, customization, and Challenge mode stages.
While the Amiibo works with both the Wii U and 3DS versions of Shovel Knight, the co-op mode is only available on Wii U. It allows two players to play through the entire campaign together using either the Classic Knight character or the new Custom Knights.
By collecting treasure throughout the game, you can level up your Amiibo, allowing you to customize his look. There are also new relics, abilities, and powers to unlock which come in to play in the new Challenge mode. There are five new challenges for solo and co-op play each, the latter of which (like the co-op campaign) are exclusive to Wii U.
The Shovel Knight Amiibo was first announced in October. It marks the first one to be produced for a third-party game.