[Gamasutra rounds up recent reports on the Japanese games industry from local news site Andriasang.com, a leading destination for English-language news on Japan's game industry.]
In our latest round-up of Japanese game industry news not previously reported on Gamasutra, we look at Sony's latest effort to boost PS Vita sales, a new game from a Shenmue
veteran, problems for Sega's free-to-play PS Vita game, and more.
New El Shaddai project was El Shaddai Social Battle for Gree
After teasing a new project for its El Shaddai
property a couple of weeks ago, Ignition Entertainment has revealed that it's developing a social game called El Shaddai Social Battle
, which is based on action title released to Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 last year.
Releasing for Japanese mobile social game network Gree, the new game has players building parties of angels, teaming up with friends, completing challenges, and battling rival angels.
Sega halts Samurai & Dragons service until mid-April
Sega has temporarily closed its service for Samurai & Dragons
, its free-to-play game released to PS Vita just a few days ago, as it attempts to fix network issues that have prevented users from logging in or playing the game.
The publisher said that addressing these issues and adding new servers will take time, so it will block service for Samurai & Dragons
until April 17. It has made the sim/RPG's free client unavailable to download in the meantime, too.
Sony bundles 4GB memory card with PlayStation Vita
Sony has reportedly sweetened the deal for its unannounced PS Vita discount campaign it's run in Japan for the past 2 months, which offers consumers a 2000 yen off ($24) if they buy the 3G model of the system with a game.
It was originally supposed to end the campaign at the end of March, but Sony has extended the deal, and now it's thrown in a free 4GB memory card. For the past month, PS Vita has sold hardly more than 10,000 units
each week -- less than even PSP's sales.
Sega Announces Sega Ages Online Series
Sega will revive its Sega Ages brand -- previously used for compilations and re-releases -- for a series of retro releases on Xbox Live Arcade and PlayStation Network that will begin this spring.
the Sega Ages Online games will feature recreations of classic titles that include new features like a juke box music playback mode, replay saving, Trophy and Achievement support, and a Trial Mode with world rankings.
Six titles have been announced for the series so far: Alex Kidd in Miracle World, The Super Shinobi, Super Hang-On
(compatible with stereoscopic 3D), Wonder Boy Monster Land
, Wonder Boy V Monster World III,
and Monster World IV
While they will sell for 600 yen ($7) each on PSN, they will be sold on XBLA with two sets that include three titles each.
Shenmue veteran creating Orgarhythm (pictured)
Tak Hirai, who was the main programmer on Sega's cult game Shenmue
, is working on a new PS Vita rhythm/strategy title called Orgarhythm
at his new studio Neilo. Acquire will publish Orgarhythm
in Japan this summer, while Xseed will handle publishing duties for North America.
[This story was written with permission using material from Andriasang.com, a leading destination for English-language news on Japan's game industry.]