Level-5 president and CEO Akihiro Hino says we may see a western release of Yokai Watch in the near future. The extremely popular ghost-hunting RPG has sold tremendous amounts in Japan, with its sequel managing to reach the million-selling mark in just four days. In past interviews Hino revealed Yokai Watch was in “serious consideration” for the western market, however according to a recent interview on the Japanese news site, Zak Zak, the game is already in development with plans to release next year.
Level-5 has shown considerable support in the past for both US and European markets and, while this shouldn’t be taken as an official confirmation, it’s certainly highly promising. Here’s what Akihiro Hino said in relation to the game coming to western shores:
“In regards to foreign markets, we have been taking a look at it in regards to Yokai Watch. We are in development planning to release it sometime next year. We think it has a big appeal as a very Japanese-ish fantasy story. We already have support from a foreign toy maker company saying that it will be a definite success.”
Next Level Games have posted some gorgeous artwork from the legendary Shigeru Miyamoto celebrating the fact that Luigi’s Mansion: Dark Moon sold three million copies. The artwork was produced back in March, but it’s only recently that Next Level Games have showcased it via Twitter.
Thanks, Kallum S
Famitsu recently had the opportunity to sit down with Level 5 president and CEO Akihiro Hino. The publication quizzed Hino about whether the immensely popular Yokai Watch will make its way over to the west. The anime is apparently destined for western shores, but we’ve hardly heard anything about the game. Hino told the magazine that international expansion “in consideration in a big way.” Hopefully that means we should get some news about a future western release. You can read how Yokai Watch was engineered to be a massive hit, right here. We also posted the first forty-two minutes of Yokai Watch 2 which you can view, here.
Nintendo announced after today’s E3 Digital Conference that Fantasy Life will be coming to the west. Players embark on the adventure of their dreams as they craft, cast, battle and role-play. The innovative Life system lets players change to one of 12 Life classes at virtually any time to access different abilities. The huge fantasy landscape is filled with surly dark paladins, slick pirate captains and others who share a taste for the unknown.
Yokai Watch has shipped over one million copies in Japan following an announcement from Level-5. According to figures released just over two months ago, the anime RPG had reached 500k on the Nintendo 3DS but in a short space of time has rocketed to a milestone mark. It’s believed sales have been boosted due to the popularity of the animated TV series, which began airing in January.
A sequel to the popular fantasy RPG will launch for Japan on July 10, and will come in two versions for avid fans of the series. Though western audiences are yet to get their hands on Yokai Watch, Level-5 have not ruled out the possibility and are considering bringing the game over.
Nintendo has released a new trailer for Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy to coincide with the puzzle game’s arrival in North America. The Nintendo 3DS-exclusive title, which is now available in stores and on the Nintendo eShop, centers around Professor Layton and his assistants Luke and Emmy as they journey to uncover the mystery surrounding the ancient Azran civilization. Professor Layton and the Azran Legacy has been available in Europe, Australia and Japan since last year.
Level 5 have mentioned on Facebook that Yokai Watch has been a massive success in Japan. Interestingly, the company asked its fans whether they would like to see the game and anime come to the west. Just last month the company filed a trademark for Yokai Watch in the US, so it sounds as though it’s coming at some point.
Between the strong sales of the game and the popularity of the new anime, Yo-kai Watch is a verified success in Japan!
Would Yo-kai Watch be something you’d be interested in watching or playing in English?
It seems as though Level 5 may be considering bringing its Nintendo 3DS game about about a boy and a watch that lets him see Japanese spirits called Youkai to the United States. The company has just filed a trademark for Yokai Watch in the US. The Nintendo 3DS game has performed well in Japan, so it would be great if the game graced western shores. It should also be noted that Level 5 also registered a trademark in the United States for Inazuma Eleven.
Shaking up the industry is something Level-5 CEO Akihiro Hino is more than happy to do, and he’s got new plans to surprise fans in 2014 and beyond. Speaking to 4Gamer, via translations from Siliconera, the company’s president said he believes the industry needs a new game to both freshen and rejuvenate the console gaming industry.
Hearkening back to his comments last month, Hino said that he’d like to vary the range of Level-5’s current titles on offer by producing games for a younger audience. Although, he’d also like to step in and create titles for a much wider audience such as Wonder Flick. But if Hino says he wants to surprise gamers with a new game, he’ll no doubt follow through.
“In the midst of a rather sluggish consumer game industry at the moment, I believe that the industry needs a ‘new game’. We’ll try our best to make a new title that’ll surprise all of you, so please look forward to that.”
Akihiro Hino, the president of acclaimed studio Level 5, has spoken to Famitsu about the company’s future plans. Hino says he wants to diversify the titles and make some for younger people, and also some for a much wider audience, like the breakout hit Fantasy Life. However, Hino says that it’s the games for younger people which have seen fantastic results in Japan, such as Inazuma Eleven and Youkai Watch.
“If I had to split it in two, then it’d be cross-media expansions for children for Nintendo 3DS, such as Youkai Watch and Inazuma Eleven, and then games for a wider audience such as Fantasy Life and Wonder Flick,” answers Hino. “Each target audience requires a different strategy in terms of hardware approach, so I’d like to think about more plans for that.”
“It’s actually still selling quite well. In the case of Inazuma Eleven, the first game’s opening week saw about 40,000 copies sold, and it ended up selling about 400,000 in the end, and I see Youkai Watch going with a similar flow, so I believe we were able to create another successful title. I believe that we’ll be able to surpass that next time, so I’d like to continue focusing on titles made for children.”