In an interview with Japanese news website Mainichi Daily News
, Takahashi Sensui, the general manager for Xbox in Japan, has denied any plans for a price cut of the Xbox 360 in Japan, despite the console’s continued sales problems in the territory.
Although weekly Xbox 360 Japanese hardware sales hover at around the 1,000 mark (below that of the original Xbox at the same time in its lifecycle and often below current sales of the GameCube) Sensui has insisted that the PlayStation 3 is too expensive, while claiming that “gaming is the essential role of Xbox 360, and the experience is in no way inferior to any other console."
His comments, translated by Edge and Next-Gen's Christophe Katogani, appear to deemphasize the multimedia functions of the format, which are usually seen as an important part of the console’s feature set in the West. Sensui also claimed that there were no plans to release a HD-DVD equipped Xbox 360, although he did admit that, if sales of the stand-alone device are good, this may be reconsidered.
With titles such as Dead or Alive 4
and N3: Ninety-Nine Nights
failing to create any appreciable increase in demand for the console, the format’s future in Japan is now reliant, in the short term, on those titles being created by Final Fantasy
creator’s Hironobu Sakaguchi’s Mistwalker studio. The first of these titles is Blue Dragon
, which is due for release in Japan this year and is currently at number five in Famitsu magazine’s list of most wanted games by consumers.