Japandemonium - Fill-In Update A-Go-Go

Hey there! It's Tyler filling in for Alex, because Castomel put a gun to my head, and threatened to sodo-- never mind! Try to stay with me, as I blindingly attempt to make sense of the random websites I've been desperately trying to utilize. I promise Alex will return (I think!) and you can go back to reading my horribly confusing editorials (shameless plug), as opposed to my dangerously disasterrific update presented before you. Be warned, I may very well have no idea what the hell I'm doing.

For the week of November 10th-16th, here are the Dengeki numbers. Busin 0: Wizardry Alternative NEO is top dog this week with a respectable 4th place, followed by last week's champion Oriental Blue (who dropped from 18th to 27th place this week). The Pocket Monster games damn nearly tied each other at the end of the thirties. Lastly, dragging behind is Drag-on Dragoon, which fell a good ten feet in the charts. Not a terrible week for RPGs, though not a fantastic one either. It's good to see Wizardry is doing well, though.

Pos. Title Publisher Plat.
4 Busin 0: Wizardry Alternative NEO Atlus
27 Oriental Blue: Blue Tengai Nintendo
29 Spectral Soul Idea Factory
32 Front Mission 1st Square Enix
36 Tengai Makyou II: Manji Maru Hudson
38 Pocket Monster Sapphire Nintendo
39 Pocket Monster Ruby Nintendo
44 Drag-on Dragoon Square Enix

Famitsu nailed two role-playing games this time around, going with Wild Arms Alter Code: F and Phantasy Star Online Episode III: C.A.R.D. Revolution. First off, Wild Arms Alter Code: F scored a nice goal, winning a sweet gold award. The guys at Media Vision are supposedly updating the game perfectly, according to Famitsu. Monolith Soft's Baten Kaitos made out with a decent 31 out of 40, which should make the winged people of that game's particular world happy. While PSO Episode III didn't achieve anything spectacular, it is said that it'll conclude the Ragol story that the previous two dealt with. Also, don't forget it did nab a 32 out of 40, so while no awards were won, it's certainly nothing to scoff at. And, as usual, the individual editor scores are kindly displayed below.

Title Publisher Plat. Scores
Wild Arms Alter Code: F Media Vision 8, 9, 8, 8 - 33/40
Baten Kaitos Namco 8, 8, 8, 7 - 31/40
Phantasy Star Online Episode III: C.A.R.D. Revolution Sonic Team 8, 8, 8, 8 - 32/40

DigiCube, the "7-11 of Japan," filed for bankruptcy on the 26th of November. The company made the decision after deciding total liabilities way surpassed its capacity to repay certain debts. The company owes 9.5 billion yen ($87 million). That, right there, is some serious coin. DigiCube first opened its doors in 1996, and was established by Square. With its base of operations only distributing in convenience stores in Japan, the company heavily took one in the chops from shrinking game sales. Even though the DigiCube company had recorded sales upwards of roughly 8.6 million copies of games in 1998, those figures frantically dropped to 2.4 million by 2002. Thanks to this, the company took a loss of 6 billion yen, that's about 65 million dollars, in 2001 from the liquefaction of its convenience store, kiosky business.

Funny, the parent company Square Enix played a role of sorts in the DigiCube's grand failure. The CEO of the company told reporters that the delay of FFXII was an awfully big factor in DigiCube's decision to close its doors. The reason in this being, the company's revenue for the past quarter was about 10 billion yen ($92 million), but early projections based on the foolhardy assumption that FFXII would be ready to go during the quarter set the revenue for 21 billion yen. Now, that's more than twice the revenue actually gained. DigiCube called for a loss of 1.1 billion yen ($10 million) during the first half of this fiscal year, then said it expected to end the fiscal year with a 2.7 billion ($28 million) deficit. Ouch.

It's Square Enix time! Japan's got a fine game finally coming out soon, the ever delayed release of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time Director's Cut is set in Japan for January 22, 2004, for 6800 yen. This is the remixed version of Star Ocean: Till the End of Time that we're still waiting for here in the states. Surprisingly enough, there's still no word on which of the two versions we're scheduled to get.

Next up, we've two announcements from Square Enix in regards to showing a playable demo of Dragon Quest V for the PS2 at the Jump Festival, which will take place in Japan on December 20 - 21. In addition to that, new footage of Final Fantasy XII will be showing in the Jump Festival as well. It's open, free to the public. You'd better get your plane ticket. That's reason enough for fanboys to foam at the mouth in anticipation.


Well, I'm finished. I really wish I could've found more, but it appears it's a horribly slow we- er, month, whatever. Since I'm new to this whole Japandemonium thing, you probably won't have to see my name at the bottom of one of these again. After I finish writing out the ransom letter for Alex, make my deals with the authorities, and escape with three Swedish bikini models carrying .357 magnums - you'll get to pretend this was just a dream, and that I merely drugged you all with text.

Remember kids, radioactive waste doesn't give you super powers, but it can make you glow with suppressed sexual energy.

Missed an installment? Check out the archives.

Sources: [Gamespot, The-Magicbox, Games Are Fun]

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by Tyler Morris

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