Land of the rising sun gets white PS Vita, Hatsune Miku variant too
Color conscious gamers can pick up a “Crystal White” PlayStation Vita in Japan starting June 28 for 25,000 and 30,000 yen for Wi-fi and 3G models, respectively. They amount to approximately $310 and $375 if you want to count in green monies.
Don’t like white? Sony is also releasing a Hatsune Miku handheld two months later for a 10,000 yen premium. Sega’s digital diva graces the handheld’s rear touch panel. The extra money will net you a 4GB memory card and a copy of Next Hatsune Miku: Project Diva. Check out the video.
Xbox 360 sales get big boost in Japan thanks to Monster Hunter
From the improbable-news-department comes word that Xbox 360 sales in Japan have spiked by more than 800%! This is thanks to the recent release of Monster Hunter Frontier Online, which helped push sales of the console to 17,370 units from 2,060 the previous week.
Similar boosts have occurred before. Those were attributed to the launches of Tales of Vesperia and Infinite Undiscovery.
MHFO ships with 12 months of Xbox Live Gold and a code for 30 days of free online play for the game for which monthly subscriptions are priced at 1400 yen ($16).
20GB, 60GB PS3 Models Discontinued in Japan
The Japanese will no longer be able to purchase 20GB and 60GB models of the PS3, as Sony has decided to cease production of those models to focus on the cheaper 40GB model, which sells for 39,980 yen (approximately US$360) in the country. This model does not feature backwards compatibility support; this void has been filled by Sony which now offers many PS1 games in the PlayStation Store.
It can also be noted that Sony “will launch new models to respond to end-user preferences,” though no exact timeframe was given.
Wii Beats Lifetime Gamecube Sales
Nintendo is back in the business and kicking ass, as reports have come in that the sales of the WIi till now has surpassed the lifetime sales of the Gamecube. Apparently, the Wii’s predecessor sold 4,179,963 during the five years it was in the market. The Wii has officially sold 4,231,044 units in Japan, outselling its older brother.
Ubi Acquires Digital Kids
French publisher Ubisoft announced that it has acquired Japanese developer Digital Kids. Established with offices in Nagoya and Osaka, DK currently has a team of 20 developers specialized in games for the DS. The studio has worked for a number of Japanese publishers and has developed Ubi’s Petz line of games.
Xbox 360 Price Cut in Japan
Although Microsoft is doing quite well in North America and Europe, sales of the Xbox 360 in Japan have been nothing but abysmal. To show how desperate they are, the company announced a price cut of the console in the country by about 13 percent. The Xbox 360 will be sold for 34,800 yen (US $304) starting November 1, down from 39,975 yen (US $348). That’s the price for the premium model, with the Core model going for 27,800 yen ($240).
This comes after Sony cut prices on the PS3 by $100, marketing two $399 and $499 models in all regions. The Wii currently sells for around 25,000 yen ($219) in Japan.
Kirby Super Star on DS
From Japan comes word that Nintendo has announced Kirby Super Star for the DS. Set for release sometime next year in the country, the 8-in-1 Super NES funpack will be ported to the handheld, with a couple of additions, though those weren’t detailed.
The game, as expected, lets players take on the role of Kirby, who is partnered with a foe-turned-friend sidekick for the majority of the game. It will allow a second player to join in as a buddy, with each player having a different move-set.
Gitaroo Developer Working on X360 Title
In an interview with Gamasutra, Japanese rhythm game developer iNiS co-founder Keiichi Yano revealed that the studio is working on a Xbox 360 title, though he would not offer any details.
“Yeah. We are currently working on a title,” he said. “I can’t really get into it more than, ‘Yes, we’re working on something!'”
The studio is popular for many rhythm games including Gitaroo Man and Elite Beat Agents. It is expected that the Xbox 360 title will also be a rhythm game.
Ninja Gaiden 2 to be Shown at TGS
You can thank Gamers-Creed for letting the world know that there IS a GameSpot Korea, which they cite as a source for the following juicy phrase: Ninja Gaiden 2 at TGS.
Apparently, the game was confirmed by an insider in the Japanese games industry, who claims that the game will be shown on the Xbox 360 at the show though there might be a PS3 version in development. According to their source, this is being done because of the good relationship with Microsoft and the franchise’s developers. He also notes that this move is necessary to Microsoft to increase sales of their console which is ailing far behind the PS3 and Wii in the region.
Dragon Quest Remakes Headed to DS
Japanese gaming publication Shonen Jump has revealed that remakes of Dragon Quest IV, V and VI are headed to the DS. According to the article, the games will feature 3D graphics and an isometric perspective. The DS version of Dragon Quest IV is expected to hit Japan this Winter; no release dates for North America and Europe were revealed.