Canadian French Nintendo Titles

Discussion in '3DS - Games & Content' started by drfsupercenter, Jul 10, 2014.

  1. drfsupercenter

    drfsupercenter Flash Cart Aficionado

    Mar 26, 2008
    United States
    Hey guys,

    I've just been on vacation to Canada, and we went through the French-speaking province of Quebec. I noticed some interesting things and had some nice chats with people who worked at video game stores.

    Here's what I was able to find out... slightly conflicting info actually.

    First store I went to was in Montreal. I stopped at EB Games and found only one purely French DS title, the 3DS ones were all multi-lingual (in other words, they're the same as what you'd find in the USA, just with a sticker on the box saying you can play in French), same with most of the DS titles. They even had some English-only DS titles as well.

    But I did find one, and I bought it just to check it out. The French title is:
    Leçons de cuisine: Qu'allons-nous manger aujourd'hui?

    The English title, is of course, Personal Trainer: Cooking. The box has a little orange box on the front that says: "Contenu du jeu en français | Game content French only"
    The back of the box has an ID of NTR P CNVF CDF. That CDF is what interests me the most - think about the European releases, you'll have games in the UK sold as "UKV" but the cartridge itself is just "EUR". The "UKV" refers to the manual/packaging, indicating it has English, even if the cart is multi-lingual, since they usually only have the manual in one language. The cartridge itself reads NTR-CNVF-FRA.

    This is the case here, too - it just has a French manual. Though interestingly enough, it has "If you like Personal Trainer: Cooking, Check out these other great games." with the same message translated in French lower on the page.

    I asked the guy at that EB Games (who spoke English, since it's a massive tourist trap) if he knew of other French-only titles. I mentioned that I tried to find them on and found nothing - in fact, if you try to find the French version of Personal Trainer: Cooking, you'll find the same thing... only the English one. The French one does not appear on their site at all. He said that you'd basically have to call around to find the French ones. I asked if any of them were ever just imported from France and he told me that no, they weren't, due to regional laws, they were all special ones made for Canada. (Hence the CDF designation)

    Next, I went to Quebec city itself. I called a store this time, rather than wasting time going out there. I talked to another English speaker on the phone and asked if they had any French language DS or 3DS games. The guy wanted to know if I was looking for any specifics, so I mentioned the Professor Layton series, since I know those only have one language, even on the 3DS. He told me that they only sold the English version of the two 3DS titles (even in the heart of French speaking Canada!), and that the two for DS they did have in French were just imported from France. This contradicts what the guy in Montreal said, but it explains why they don't have the 3DS ones translated, due to region locking.

    I decided to do some research on my own. I noticed that Club Nintendo shows "Professor Layton and the Unwound Future (French)" as an eligible title, and I assume you can't just buy one in France and have it work. I checked and found nothing, and obviously was no help at all.

    However, eBay was a tad more helpful. I found one for sale that looked like this:

    Notice how it comes in a black case like the rest of North American DS titles, and in the top left is has the little speech bubble showing it's in French. Compare that to the ones sold in Europe (France specifically in this case):

    That one has the clear box which is how those games come packaged in Europe, and it also doesn't have the speech bubble.

    So a couple things I wonder about.

    Does Nintendo actually just use the French versions for Canada, but repackage them in the black cases? The fact it still has a PEGI rating and not ESRB is very suspect, as I know Canada uses the ESRB. This cooking game I bought has an ESRB rating, not PEGI.

    I know the majority of DS, and now 3DS games are multi-lingual. But what about the ones that aren't - how many of them are specially made for Canada (with the CDF marker), versus just being imported from France? The fact that none of these show up on websites besides eBay is also highly suspect, but obviously they would sell these games in French in provinces like Quebec and New Brunswick.
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