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Soul Sacrifice and more in this week's Japanese news roundup

Gamasutra rounds up recent reports on the Japanese games industry from local news site Andriasang.com, including Keiji Inafune's PS Vita game, a new studio from several Q Entertainment veterans, and more.
[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 Keiji Inafune's PS Vita game (pictured), a new studio from several Q Entertainment veterans, and more. Lumines and Rez creators release first iOS game A number of Q Entertainment veterans who have worked on titles like Lumines, Rez, and Child of Eden have formed a new Japanese development studio called Monstars Inc. The group is headed by Osamu Kodera, who previously worked on planning and programming for Rez's boss fights. He was also a main developer on the recently released Child of Eden. Monstars released its first game today with Kotomon, a rhythm game for iOS. Nippon Ichi sees increased earnings on Disgaea performance Strong sales from Nippon Ichi's Disgaea strategy RPG franchise helped increase the company's annual revenues from ¥2.2 billion ($27.8 million) to ¥2.5 billion ($30.8 million). Its profits, however, dropped from ¥230 million ($2.9 million) to ¥215 million ($2.7 million). Nippon Ichi released a dozen games in Japan and abroad during the last fiscal year (ending March), including Phantom Kingdom Portable for PSP, Disgaea 4 for PlayStation 3, and Disgaea 3 for PS Vita. Despite its success with the series, Nippon Ichi wants to decrease its reliance on Disgaea. The company is working on titles designed to reduce its Disgaea dependency, as well as on projects with its new social games subsidiary Deon Entertainment. MapleStory social game hits Gree Popular free-to-play MMORPG MapleStory has received a social game adaptation called MapleStory Brave Monsters, which released for feature phones and smartphones today via mobile social games network Gree. Nexon, which develops and publishes MapleStory, worked with Gree and Japanese web service provider Drecom on the release. Brave Monsters is a card-battle social game. Soul Sacrifice is from Keiji Inafune and Marvelous AQL Former Capcom development head Keiji Inafune has announced his first PS Vita project, Soul Sacrifice, a third-person multiplayer action title he's creating with the help of Japanese developer and publisher Marvelous AQL. Set to release in Japan this winter, Soul Sacrifice has players allows players to sacrifice objects, body parts, and even their lives to cast magic while fighting enemies. The game will feature local and online multiplayer. Inafune, who created the concept for the title, commented during a presentation for the game, "Concept is the most important part of a game. If the concept is good, 80 percent of games are good. That's how important the concept is." Notable video game composers Yasunori Mitsuda (Final Fantasy V, Chrono Trigger) and Wataru Hohoyama (Afrika, Resident Evil 5) are also lending their talents to Soul Sacrifice. [This story was written with permission using material from Andriasang.com, a leading destination for English-language news on Japan's game industry.]

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