When it was announced during last month's Nintendo Direct that the elusive Fire Emblem Fates had finally been granted an official Western release date we breathed a little sigh of relief, secure in the knowledge that we only have to wait until February 19th 2016 to get our hands on the latest instalment in the Fire Emblem franchise.
There was a ton of speculation about the specific form(s) in which Fire Emblem Fates would be released in the West, given that in Japan there was two physical versions and a DLC, each offering a different narrative path, playable units and items. The Nintendo Direct address confirmed that the Western release would follow the same blueprint, with Fates: Birthright and Fates: Conquest releasing as two separate physical versions and Fates: Revelation as a DLC (which was originally released in Japan as Fates: Invisible Kingdom).
However there is still something clouding the issue, and that's the question of what's happening with the European release date. Nintendo do have a history with disappointing fans in Europe with delayed release dates and Fire Emblem Fates sadly looks set to be no different, with nothing confirmed beyond an undefined early 2016 date.
This is likely caused by the fact that Europe has a smaller audience and therefore are a lesser priority than the Japanese and American markets, but it's still a little annoying for those on that continent who have been anticipating a release date for Fates with still no news on that front. The format issue isn't helping things either, despite the fact that the American release has been confirmed as separate games it was looking suspiciously likely for a while that the European release would be a single game (plus DLC).
Online shopping giant Amazon still has the game listed as a single release pre-order, with no option to purchase a specific version nor any further information listed on the page about the separate releases. Early versions of the preorder page on Amazon Mobile did have a notice saying that the choice would be made in game, but that has since been pulled.
All this led to a lot of speculation (as you can see on the page itself) that the game would be a single release with the choice made in game, which would explain why the release date hadn't yet been set for Europe.
However; Game.co.uk, the biggest video game specific retailer in the UK, now has two distinct versions listed for sale on their website: Conquest and Birthright.
Having a look at various different retailers from different European countries doesn't yield much more information on the matter; most online retailers still have it listed as single release, presumably awaiting the official line from Nintendo (as are we all).
The fact that Game have two distinct versions available does look good for the separate release and goes someway towards allying fears and answering questions.
But right now from the looks of things a lot of European retailers might have some working out to do with the orders after the release date is set, so perhaps hold off on pre-ordering until all that gets worked out.