[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 Nintendo's development of voice recognition technology, the PlayStation Vita's top-selling game, and a free-to-play title for Sony's new handheld.
Nintendo and NTT team up for voice recognition
Japanese telecommunications company NTT has partnered with Nintendo and other firms to develop speech recognition technology that is meant to assist disabled students by converting voices into text, according to a report
from public broadcasting network NHK.
The technology converts teachers' spoken words into text, then displays them on electronic blackboards or on Nintendo DSes. Their lectures are saved, so students can review them later. They can also use the DS as a communication tool.
PlayStation Vita has its first 100,000 seller
Six weeks after PS Vita's launch in Japan, the system is finally seeing its first 100,000-copy seller in Hot Shots Golf: World Invitational
. Those numbers only include the first-party published title's sales at retail, and not digital purchases via PSN.
The game has outsold other launch titles like Uncharted: Golden Abyss
and Dynasty Warriors Next
, but it has a long way to go before matching previous Hot Shots
releases, which all moved over a million copies (except for Hot Shots Golf 5
, which sold 410,000 units).
Japanese developer Gung-Ho also announced
that its free PS Vita demo for Ragnarok Odyssey
has seen over 100,000 downloads since releasing in January 19. The full version of the RPG ships in Japan this week.
PlayStation Vita Samurai & Dragons is free-to-play
Sega revealed that it will release Samurai & Dragons
for PS Vita, an updated port of its iOS game, as a free-to-play title with microtransactions. It intends to put out the sim/RPG as a downloadable title on March 29 in Japan.
The publisher also plans to release a "Deluxe Package" retail version of Samurai & Dragons
on April 26, and will include in-game currency and other special tickets redeemable with the game. It is holding a closed beta test for Samurai & Dragons
before its launch.
[This story was written with permission using material from Andriasang.com, a leading destination for English-language news on Japan's game industry.]