Image: Nintendo

Xenoblade Chronicles 3 is inching toward its release on July 29th, so naturally, folks in the UK and the EU are wondering when on earth they'll be able to pre-order the fancy Special Edition.

Well, sadly, although those in North America were able to secure their pre-orders recently (albeit with the added sting of those ruddy scalpers swooping in), Nintendo has now announced that pre-orders for the UK and the EU won't be opening until after the game's launch later this month.

Here's exactly what Nintendo had to say on the matter:

Due to unforeseen logistical challenges, we are unable to open pre-orders for the Xenoblade Chronicles 3 Collector’s Edition before the game launches on July 29th.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused. To give customers the flexibility to purchase and enjoy the game at launch, we will now be offering the contents of the Collector’s Edition (soft cover concept art book, steel case and outer box packaging) as a separate purchase at a price that does not include the Xenoblade Chronicles 3 software.
This means you can buy the Xenoblade Chronicles 3 game when it launches on July 29th, and have a chance to pre-order the Collector’s Edition contents on My Nintendo Store later in September.

XC3 Collector's
Image: Nintendo

So the good news then (if you can call it that), is you'll be able to purchase the game on its own in time for launch on the 29th, with the extra contents available in September at a lower price.

Nintendo has also confirmed that the contents of the Special Edition will be delivered at some time in Autumn with free shipping. So that's something! Of course, this news comes very shortly after we learned that the My Nintendo Store was taken offline for maintenance in multiple EU countries, possibly for weeks on end.

We recently went hands on with Xenoblade Chronicles 3 and came away pretty impressed with what we'd seen so far, stating that "everything from that cracking new combat system to the twisting, turning storyline, superbly written characters and top-notch world-building is making for a third entry in this series that's hitting all the right notes so far".

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What do you make of this news from Nintendo? Disappointed? Don't care? Let us know in the comments below!

[source store.nintendo.co.uk, via twitter.com]