Marvelous AQL has announced a milestone mark for Rune Factory 4 and has sold 200,000 copies in Japan. The simulation game has also had equal success in North America where it faced numerous stock issues at retailers. But even uttering the name of the title in Europe is quite possibly a sore spot for fans following the game’s cancellation.
However, if you’re lucky enough to own a Japanese 3DS and haven’t yet purchased Rune Factory 4, it’s prime time to do so. With the milestone mark achieved Marvelous AQL are launching a two-week sale for the game, where it will be discounted to half price. Starting April 23 until May 7, Rune Factory 4 will be available to download in the Nintendo eShop for 2,685 yen compared to the usual 5,369 yen. Plus if you are fluent in Japanese, you can check out Marvelous’s video above in celebration of the achievement.
Japanese magazine CoroCoro has announced that the ever-popular Yokai Watch series for the Nintendo 3DS will be receiving a sequel. Developed by Level-5, Yokai Watch 2 will be released as two versions, Ganso (meaning Founder) and Honke (meaning Head). Both physical editions of games will come boxed with medals; Ganso comes with the silver “Nyaiin” Z medal, while Honke with the “Komanyachi” Z medal.
Yokai Watch 2 follows the story of Keita and friends as they travel back in time to Sakura New Town by way of the mysterious Yokai, in order to reveal the secrets of the ghosts. The sequel has a host of new features, including hidden ways to find new Yokai and bicycle races. Yokai Watch 2 is set to release on July 10 for the Nintendo 3DS in Japan.
Nintendo has launched a “recommended software” 3DS XL (LL) promotion in Japan for new handheld users. Starting April 26, new purchases of Nintendo 3DS LL’s will receive a download voucher for one game only, which can be redeemed from a software list of Nintendo’s choosing.
From April 26 until May 31, voucher owners can download either of these two popular 3DS titles: Animal Crossing: New Leaf or Yo-kai Watch. Nintendo of Japan will then offer two more games up for June and the subsequent months until September 30, when the promotion ends.
The promotion offers much more variety for newcomers than the current standard or limited edition bundles, but it could also be seen as more of a risk. However, it’s a great way to entice Japanese consumers back into handheld gaming following the mobile market’s dominance. Would you like to see this promotion integrated into the West? Let us know in the comments below.
Fans of the Zelda series in Japan will be ready to take on the Great Sea as soon as Toon Link’s Nendoroid figure hits virtual shelves this summer. The Good Smile Company has released a few pictures of Toon Link from the Wind Waker HD – which you can see in the gallery below – and can now be pre-ordered via their online store for 4,000 yen (equal to around $40 / £24).
Toon Link reaches 10cm in height and comes packaged with the Hero’s sword, shield and a beautiful heart container. Nendoroid figures are usually synonymous with a variety of facial expressions, and Toon Link is no different – serious, courageous, smiling and nervous expressions will accompany the figure, along with a special spin attack add-on attachment.
Unfortunately, the cutesy-pie figure is only due for an August release in Japan, but he’s much more affordable in comparison with First 4 Figures’ Zelda from Twilight Princess.
Japanese gaming publication Famistu has published the biggest-selling video games between April 1st 2013 and April 3rd 2014. The publication was most surprised at how well Rockstar’s critically acclaimed Grand Theft Auto V did. Seven of the top ten games are for Nintendo 3DS, with Wii U claiming two and PlayStation 3 one.
1. Pokemon X/Y (3DS): 4,328,008
2. Monster Hunter 4 (3DS): 3,429,862
3. Tomodachi Collection Shin Seikatsu (3DS): 1,635,099
4. Puzzle and Dragons (3DS): 1,358,548
5. Animal Crossing New Leaf (3DS): 774,152
6. Dragon Quest Monsters 2 (3DS): 710,303
7. Grand Theft Auto V (PS3): 699,182
8. Wii Party U (Wii U): 697,042
9. Yokai Watch (3DS): 652,803
10. New Super Mario Bros U (Wii U): 622,502
Respected Japanese news publication The Nikkei says June will be a major test for Nintendo president Satoru Iwata to turn things around for the company. Here’s some snippets from the article.
Nintendo rejected the suggestion of a Hong Kong investor that Nintendo move towards smartphone games with the observation “are there any companies that have had sustained revenue growth from smartphone games?”
The head of a large Chinese investment firm assigned to analyze Nintendo observed that “Nintendo must leverage its intellectual property, such as its characters.” As a matter of fact, a few years ago there were rumours that Nintendo was planning to open a theme park based on its characters in Kyoto, but the project has apparently been mothballed.
These comments on Nintendo’s existing properties reflect the irritation of investors who believe that the company has not found new sources of revenue.
Consolidated profits and earnings for the fiscal year ending in March showed a loss of 35 billion yen, (compared to a 36.4 billion yen loss the year previously) representing three consecutive years of losses.
Iwata said “only after playing the WiiU is it possible to understand its appeal. Low sales are due to the console being not well-enough known.” Within the company, proposals for how to play the WiiU are being considered.
Current cash reserves are over 500 billion yen, but whether Iwata will be given unlimited time is a separate question.
At the general meeting in March 2011, Iwata was reappointed with 92.89% of the vote, but in 2013 he was reappointed with only 77.26%.
A report delivered by CyberZ, which is a subsidiary of Tokyo Internet conglomerate CyberAgent, states that the Japanese mobile market was worth 546.8 billion yen (US$5.4 billion) in 2013. This is up an astonishing 178% from 2012. The company says that data obtained shows that smartphone games now make up 50% of the total Japanese gaming market, which is poised to grow even further this year. The report concludes by saying that the smartphone game segment is expected to reach 823.8 yen (US$8.1 billion) in size by 2016.
Those of you who live in Japan will soon be able to get your hands on these super-colourful Mario Kart 8 accessories from Hori. There’s a range of coloured steering wheels as well as Mario Kart themed Wii U GamePad covers. You can view all the lovely designs, right here.
This week’s Media Create sales are now in from Japan. The Nintendo 3DS is once again the best-selling hardware shifting 34K units, beating both the PlayStation 4 and the PlayStation Vita. Wii U sales remain steady with Nintendo’s latest console selling 7K. Here’s the best-selling software and hardware in Japan this week.
[PS3] Dark Souls II (From Software, 03/13/14) – 255,197 (New)
Nintendo has finally trademarked QOL for their upcoming Quality Of Life platform in Japan. The trademarks cover a number of things including portable gaming devices, stand alone gaming devices, to clothes, to merchandise, and beauty products. Interestingly both Apple and Google are reportedly both looking to get into the health and fitness market which should give Nintendo some fierce competition.