Rodea the Sky Soldier has had a troubled history. When originally announced for Wii and 3DS this flying action title certainly caught the eye, with the development team at Prope being led by the highly regarded Yuji Naka, one of the creators of Sonic the Hedgehog. It then seemed to enter the publishing void, however, with Naka-san saying in September 2012 that the Wii version had been finished for a year at that point, while the 3DS version was up in the air; the finger was very much pointed at publisher Kadokawa Games.
In July 2013, however, Kadokawa Games' President, Yoshimi Yasuda insisted that despite a long silence and delay on the project it was still heading for release. At that point the 3DS version was supposedly around 70% complete, while there seemed to be no positive outlook for the Wii version, with the system long since replaced and having lost all momentum in the marketplace. As over a year has passed since that update it'd be tempting to conclude that those comments from the publisher were hot air, yet the game is back again, this time with a Wii U version — to join the 3DS iteration — and a Spring 2015 release in Japan.
The shift to Wii U is no surprise, and a Famitsu report states that Kadokawa is now 'co-developing', which many are interpreting as finishing off the work primarily completed by Prope, with the studio having finished its work — as stated by Yuji Naka — long ago; Kadokawa’s Zin Hasegawa is reportedly now the director in place of Naka-san.
It looks like this title will finally hit Wii U and 3DS, then, though its days of generating substantial hype are long past. It'll be interesting to see if it does arrive in Japan next year, and also whether it'll eventually make its way to the West. We still want to play it, anyway.
Below is a trailer from way back in 2011, which serves as a reminder of why we were so intrigued at the time.