They are Nintendo, and they do whatever they want to do. Like release one of the hardest, rarest video games ever made for their 3DS handheld console, the first time it has ever graced the soil of the United States.
Summer Carnival '02 Recca was a game developed for the Summer Carnival of 1992 in Japan, which was a huge gaming competition. It is a top-down shooter, and was purposely created to test the skill and ability of the best video game players of the country. Because of it's specialized purpose when it was created, the game itself was never brought over to the states as an official release, which at the time wasn't a big deal, but as the history of video games became more of actual history, the demand of the game forced the title into the super-rare stratosphere of game collecting.
Well, Nintendo thought it was about time that consumers, fans and gaming historical buffs have the ability to not only play the game, but own it for themselves, albeit in digital representation. They released it on their eShop for the 3DS, at a modest price of $4.99. Before picking up this game, I knew the back story of it all and how it came to be, what it was and how it is highly regarded as one of the toughest games in existence (yes, up there with Battletoads). I've played hard games before, and while they usually get the best of me, I figured a top-down shooter couldn't be that bad.
Look, when people talk about a game being hard, especially if it's a game that very few people have played, and those that did were actually competitive gamers, you shouldn't take the proclamations lightly. This game is HARD, no doubt about it. Your reactions and motor skills are challenged like no other game I can remember, and it's the kind of put-the-game-down-and-walk-away-before-you-throw-it type of game.
It's fun for nostalgia sake, and to know that you have a rare piece of gaming history. Just don't anticipate being great at the game, or even good at it without tons of hours of practice. Just remember to thank Nintendo for being them, in all their quirkiness and uniqueness.