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Report: Hudson U.S. Office To Close

Hudson Entertainment, the U.S. arm of Japanese Bomberman creator Hudson Soft, will close its doors as a consequence of publisher Konami's recent acquisition of its parent company.
Hudson Entertainment, the U.S. arm of Japanese Bomberman creator Hudson Soft, will close its doors as a consequence of publisher Konami's recent acquisition of its parent company. The news comes from the blog of Hudson Entertainment brand manager Morgan Haro, who says that the office will be shut down at the end of the month, and that "all of Hudson's previously-planned projects have been canceled." Hudson Entertainment's primary purview was bringing Hudson Soft games to North American audiences and overseeing their social media and brand presences in the Western market. The parent company handled a mix of retail and digital downloads; most recently it released Lost in Shadow and had Wii success with Deca Sports; Bomberman Live served as a prominent example of its aims for the console digital download space. Although Hudson Soft released games in the U.S. in the 1980s and 1990s as "Hudson USA", Hudson Entertainment as it exists now was established in 2003. Emphasizing that his views are his own and thus unofficial, Haro theorizes from his experience that the difficulty Japanese publishers and their Western offices often have in communicating with one another is challenging the country's industry. This may have contributed to difficulties for Hudson Soft -- which notably remains operational under Konami in Japan. Konami announced its acquisition of Hudson Soft, in which it was a majority stakeholder since 2005, just recently -- on January 20. It is expected to direct Hudson Soft toward the development of smaller mobile, social and online titles; Kazuhiko Uehara, CEO of Konami's digital division, will oversee the company once Hudson Soft CEO Michihiro Ishizuka officially steps down on March 31. The transaction of 2.5 million shares will happen on April 1 of this year, Konami said, and Hudson will be delisted from the stock market on March 29.

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