Report: Nintendo Halts Production on Wii

October 21, 2013 - GamePolitics

Nintendo of Japan has confirmed via its official web site - as translated by Kotaku - that it has halted production of its last-generation Wii console for Japan. The company said earlier in the month that it would halt production of the console for the region "soon," and the latest update to the site confirms that that time is now.

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SoftBank, GungHo Take Controlling Interest in Supercell

October 15, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Softbank and GungHo Online are making a substantial investment in Finnish free-to-play and mobile gaming juggernaut Supercell. The company is selling a 51 percent stake for $1.53 billion to Japan’s SoftBank and game developer GungHo Online Entertainment. The strategic investment will make Supercell a subsidiary of Softbank, with the funds being used to fuel Supercell’s global expansion.

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Nintendo: No More Wii Production for Japan

October 1, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Nintendo revealed that it is finally winding down production of its popular Wii console in Japan. Last year the company said that it had stopped making games for the platform. Speaking to Eurogamer, a Nintendo of Europe representative noted that the company's Japanese parent company will stop making new Wii systems in the near future.

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Atlus President and CEO Apologizes for 'Worrying Fans'

September 20, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Atlus President and CEO Naoto Hiraoka has penned an open letter to fans, discussing the acquisition by Sega earlier this week, praising and thanking the company's legions of fans for the continual support and encouragement, and apologizing for making them worry about the company's future.

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Sega Buys Atlus Parent Company Index

September 18, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Sega has confirmed that it has taken over the operations of Index Corporation, the Japanese parent company of video game publisher Atlus. Index filed for "Civil Rehabilitation" (the Japanese version of bankruptcy) in June of this year, after suffering heavy debts. Sega has acquired the company and Atlus, and has formed a new subsidiary to take over operations of the company, called Sega Dream Corporation (the name is tentative and will likely change at a later date).

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Japan Getting PlayStation 4 in February 2014

September 9, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

During the same press conference where it revealed a lighter and thinner PS Vita and the new PS Vita TV micro console, Sony delivered some bad news to Japanese consumers: the PlayStation 4 will launch much later in Japan than anywhere else in the world.

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Sony Reveals PS Vita TV Micro Console

September 9, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

During a press conference this morning in Japan, Sony announced a new micro-console called the PlayStation Vita TV. The 6.5cm by 10.5cm micro-console utilizes the PS Vita chipset and its system software, and supports the Dualshock  3 controller. The device allows 1,300 PS Vita, PSP, and classic PlayStation One games to be played on a television screen. The PS Vita TV will also support movies services, eBooks, and the PlayStation Plus service. Some PS4 games will be playable via Remote Play as well.

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Halo Designer Calls Out Kojima's 'Sexy' Comments

September 6, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Halo designer David Ellis thinks the Hideo Kojima-approved "sexy" design for the Metal Gear Sold 5 Quiet is "ridiculous," and says that the industry is full of what he calls "man babies." Earlier in the week Kojima said that he had directed designer Yoji Shinkawa to make the sniper character Quiet more "erotic" so that more people would cosplay her during the Tokyo Game Show later this month. Today during a press conference Q&A, Kojima told Polygon that he meant to say "sexy."

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MGS5 Female Sniper 'Quiet' Getting 'Erotic' Makeover for Cosplayers

September 4, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Apparently a Metal Gear Solid 5: The Phantom Pain character is getting redesigned to be more "erotic" according what game director Hideo Kojima wrote in a series of tweets today. This, he believes, will make the character more appealing for cosplay.

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Project Phoenix Doubles Crowd Funding Goal

August 13, 2013 -

The Kickstarter campaign for Project Phoenix, an indie Japanese role-playing game being developed by Creative Intelligence Arts for PC, is a smashing success. In less than 24 hours the project has been fully funded and has doubled the amount of money it was seeking. As of this writing (that money ticker is climbing faster than we can keep track of it), the project has raised $268,841 from 4,168 backers with 28 more days to go.

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Report: Twenty Companies Including Sega Interested in Buying Atlus

August 5, 2013 -

Sega is one of twenty companies interested in buying out Atlus from Japanese parent company Index Holdings, according to a Blomberg Japan report (by way of CVG). Index Holdings purchased Atlus in 2006, but last month was forced to file for bankruptcy in the Tokyo District Court for over millions of dollars in debts it faced.

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Bizarre Japanese Sex Game Gets Oculus Rift Support

July 26, 2013 -

An erotic Japanese game that utilizes a phallic-shaped controller device now has Oculus Rift support to boot. The game is called Custom Maid 3D and it lets players create a maid that you can then commit various sexual acts on using a "Ju-C Air Support" controller. The controller is like a PlayStation Move controller that is also an interactive sexual aid for men. You get the general idea of what this game is really all about...

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Character Chowdown Adds Disgaea Favorites

July 24, 2013 -

NIS America has added some new characters to its educational iOS puzzle game, Character Chowdown. The in-game content, which will cost you roughly $0.99 a pop, includes characters from the popular Disgaea series such as Laharl, Prinny, Mao, and Flonne. Other downloadable content includes the Hiragana pack and seven different Kanji packs.

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Nintendo Wins Major Victory Against R4 Resellers

July 9, 2013 -

Nintendo, Square Enix and a number of other Japanese game makers have won a major victory in a long-running battle against two distributors of R4 devices. The devices are used to store and play unlicensed (pirated) versions of games for Nintendo's many hand-held devices.

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Club Nintendo Security Breached in Japan

July 5, 2013 -

Nintendo announced that Club Nintendo, its member rewards site in Japan, has been hacked. The security breach was discovered when Nintendo noticed a large number of access errors on July 2. This prompted Nintendo to conduct a deeper investigation. Looking further into the issue, Nintendo found 23,000 instances of unauthorized log-ins (with 15 million attempts) between June 9 and July 4 on Japan's Club Nintendo site. The security breach does not apply to Club Nintendo sites in other countries, according to Nintendo.

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Atlus at Risk as Parent Company's Future is Uncertain

June 27, 2013 -

Publisher Atlus has an uncertain future today as its parent company in Japan, Index, wrestles with what seems like an insurmountable amount of debt. According to a CNet Japan report, Index has filed for civil rehabilitation proceedings as it faces bankruptcy. The company owes an estimated ¥24.5 billion - roughly $224 million - in debt and its current president Ochiai Yoshimi has hinted that he will resign soon.

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Atlus Parent Company Index Under Investigation by Japanese Authorities

June 12, 2013 -

The parent company of Atlas is being investigated in Japan for "shady practices," according to this Kotaku report. In Japan "Atlus" is just a brand on paper and not a real company anymore because the Japanese company was dissolved and delisted from the stock market a few years ago after it became a wholly owned subsidiary of a company called Index.

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Nintendo of Japan Patches Out Same-Sex Relationships in Tomodachi Collection: New Life

May 13, 2013 -

Kotaku reports that the same sex relationships enjoyed by male characters in the Japanese game Tomodachi Collection: New Life have been patched out. Last week it came to light that male characters in the cutesy Japanese life sim for the 3DS could have relationships with each other. Nintendo promised a patch but many had hoped that the game would patch those same kinds of relationships for females into the game.

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Fans Offer to Translate Mother 3 for Nintendo at No Charge

April 22, 2013 -

Fans want a new Earthbound game so badly in North America that some have even offered to translate Mother 3 into English for Nintendo for free. The team of fans, which includes a professional translator, has offered to localize the game in English for Nintendo free of charge in a post on its development blog.

Mother 3 has never released outside of Japan, much to the chagrin of just about every gamer in North America and Europe.

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Microsoft Offers Incentives for Japanese Xbox 360 Players to Play More

April 18, 2013 -

Microsoft has announced a new incentive for Japan that will kick into high gear on April 20th. Xbox 360 owners in the region will get free Microsoft Points based on the collective amount of time that participants in the campaign use the console in Japan. To get those free points Japanese Xbox 360 players will hit the milestone of playing for 300,000 hours using the Xbox 360 to get 100 ($1.25) Microsoft Points for Xbox Live Gold subscribers and 10 Points for free members.

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SCE Consolidates Operations in Asia

April 1, 2013 -

Sony Computer Entertainment Japan and Sony Computer Entertainment Asia have been consolidated into one business unit operating within Sony, according to this press release - as uncovered by Kotaku. The combined operation will now be called Sony Computer Entertainment Japan Asia.

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Puzzle & Dragons GungHo Acquired by SoftBank

March 26, 2013 -

In late January we reported that GungHo Group had acquired Suda 51's studio Grasshopper Manufacture. In late February the Japanese mobile publisher revealed staggering sales figures: it reported it had generated around $65 million during January - or about $2 million dollars a day - from a single game: Puzzle & Dragons.

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Aksys Games Hosting Donation Drive for Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster

March 11, 2013 -

Aksys Games passed along word that it is currently hosting a donation drive in observance of the second Anniversary of the Great Eastern Japan Earthquake and Tsunami Disaster. To help those still suffering from the long-term effects of that horrific natural disaster, Aksys is donating a portion of the sales from its online store to the American Red Cross. For every item purchased from March 11 - 15, Aksys Games will donate $5 to the American Red Cross for ongoing relief efforts in Japan.

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Sony Unloads Stake in DeNa for $438 Million

March 4, 2013 -

Sony has decided to unload its holdings in mobile game developer and publisher DeNa, according to this Reuters report. Sony has reportedly sold all of its shares in the company to Japanese-based investment firm Nomura Securities for $438 million.

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Former Square Enix Exec Keiji Fujita Joins Adways Interactive

February 26, 2013 -

Former Square Enix and Taito executive Keiji Fujita has joined Japanese mobile ad network and game publisher Adways, the company announced today. Fujita will take the reins of the company's San Francisco office, which will serve as the home of the U.S. subsidiary, Adways Interactive. Keiji Fujita will serve as the Vice President of Game Business. The company also announced that it is looking for non-Japanese free-to-play mobile games to launch in the Japanese market. It will be on the hunt for such properties at Game Connection America 2013, where it will be present as an exhibitor.

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Report: Mobile Game Puzzle & Dragons Earned $2 Million a Day in January

February 20, 2013 -

Free-to-play mobile game Puzzle & Dragons from Japanese developer and publisher GungHo Online Entertainment supposedly generated around $65 million during January - or about $2 million dollars a day. These startling sales figures come from data collected by Japanese industry consultant Serkan Toto, who reports that the puzzle and RPG hybrid title has generated around $65 million in sales on iOS and Android in Japan last month.

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GungHo Group Acquires Grasshopper Manufacture

January 30, 2013 -

Japanese publisher GungHo Group has acquired Lollipop Chainsaw developer Grasshopper Manufacture. The studio was founded by famed Japanese games developer Suda 51 (Goichi Suda), whose work includes No More Heroes and Killer 7. The company is currently working on Killer is Dead. Financial terms of the acquisition were not disclosed.

GungHo publishes online and mobile game titles such as the popular MMO Ragnarok Online and Dragon Saga.

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Sex And Violence Edited in Japanese Version of Far Cry 3

January 11, 2013 -

According to a report on Japanese gaming web site 4Gamer (as translated by Kotaku), the Japanese version of Ubisoft's Far Cry 3 had to be edited for content before it was released in the region.

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Sony Stops Shipping PS2 Console in Japan

December 28, 2012 -

According to a Famitsue report (by way of The Verge) Sony has halted shipments of its ultra popular PlayStation 2 game console in Japan. The last generation console has sold over 150 million units worldwide since its launch in Japan on March 4th, 2000 and is the most popular home console of all time.

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Wii U Controller Firmware Region Locked

December 26, 2012 -

A report on the Japanese site Rocket News reports that there is a catch for bringing a Wii U controller to another region for use. For example, using a Wii U controller from the West in Japan may not "region lock it" (bar you from using it) but it will not allow you to apply any firmware updates. Earlier reports suggested that the controller could not be used with a console that might be from a different region.

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Andrew EisenYes, the Wii U upscales but rendering in a higher resolution looks a hell of a lot better.08/01/2014 - 10:35pm
Andrew EisenIt's pretty. Lots of videos of it floating around. Just search "Xenoblade dolphin" and you'll find them.08/01/2014 - 10:32pm
ZippyDSMleeThe WII upscales tho. Matthew: It might be becue cartoonish desings do not age as fast as presudo realisim.08/01/2014 - 10:29pm
Matthew WilsonPeople who have run the Mario Galaxy games on a emulator have said they look better then most xb1/ps4 games when upscaled, so it would be interesting to see a upscaled version of Xenoblade08/01/2014 - 9:24pm
Andrew EisenHeck, it would probably sell better to newbies anyway. Even with its awesome art direction, the game looked dated when it came out years ago. I imagine an SD version would be a tougher sell.08/01/2014 - 8:55pm
Andrew EisenBecause it would be cool, would serve the game's fantastic art direction well and encourage people who've already played it to buy it again.08/01/2014 - 7:42pm
ZippyDSMleeWhy bother with an HD relese just repack the damn thing and promote it since it will play on the WIIU anyway....08/01/2014 - 7:04pm
Andrew EisenPlus, with Nintendo carrying the Wii U almost all by itself, it could help plug one of the unfortunately inevitable release schedule gaps.08/01/2014 - 3:23pm
Andrew EisenAn HD re-release would be cool though. It's a great game (and quite the looker, especially when up-rezzed) and more people should play it (the game had a limited release at a time when the Wii was all but dead an buried).08/01/2014 - 3:21pm
E. Zachary KnightSo no, people are not going to need to play the Wii game to undstand or enjoy the Wii U game.08/01/2014 - 1:27pm
E. Zachary KnightFrom what I understand, the two games have as much to do with eachother as Final Fantasy and Final Fantasy 2.08/01/2014 - 1:26pm
MaskedPixelanteIt's my secret hope that Nintendo announces Xenoblade HD to be released in the leadup to Xenoblade Chronicles X, or at least a mass market version of the first game so that people aren't going into this one blind.08/01/2014 - 12:40pm
PHX CorpI'm going to do a test stream later today, if anyone is intrested07/31/2014 - 2:40pm
Andrew EisenYes, I'm such a big Nintendo dork that I read Nintendo's quarterly financial reports.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenCool tidbit - Mario Kart 8 sales account for more than half of total Wii U software sales for the last quarter even though it was only available for the last third.07/31/2014 - 2:09pm
Andrew EisenStill a pretty cool promotion. Unfortunately for me, I'm not interested in purchasing Mario Kart 8 and I already owned or didn't want any of the free games on offer.07/31/2014 - 1:43pm
Andrew EisenInteresting that EU had 10 games to choose from while North America only had four.07/31/2014 - 1:41pm
MaskedPixelanteIt certainly worked, I probably would never have bought Mario Kart 8 if it didn't come with a free copy of Wind Waker HD.07/31/2014 - 1:14pm
Andrew EisenI imagine will see similar promotions like "Buy Mario Kart 8 get a download code for one of these specific games" but almost certainly not for all of its (however you would define) biggest releases.07/31/2014 - 11:24am
MaskedPixelanteI wonder if Nintendo is going to be doing "buy one get one free" promos for all their biggest releases going forward.07/31/2014 - 10:48am
 

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