After the roaring success of SEGA’s free to play mobile RPG Chain Chronicles the company seems to be investing big in mobile RPGs. Next in line is Hortensia Saga, like Chain Chronicles before it, Hortensia Saga uses the 3×3 grid for tactical-RPG gameplay. The trailer shows off some gameplay, characters as well as some pretty well animated anime cut-scenes.
No word yet on a Western release but if Chain Chronicles is anything to go by we can expect a Western release by Gumi.
SEGA Networks released a new report showing the strong growth in their mobile division and lays out future plans. The report came with a host of interesting facts, from animes being produced to possibly a future MMO in production. Hit the break to find a host of a interesting information including updated figures on their NOAH Pass service which they launched in August 2013.
If you are excited about the new Sonic Team developed Sonic game, Sonic Runners then the wait is over (maybe). The game is officially out on the Google Play for Android, but sadly many people (myself included) have been plagued with the ‘This app is incompatible with all of your devices.‘ message. Meaning you can’t download it at this exact moment. Many people have been saying the app won’t be officially up until February 26th (time zone differences from Japan). As for the Apple version, that has only appeared in the Japanese iTunes, which you can see below.
If I get my hands on the APK file, then I will post it here later. If you get the game downloaded, tell us what you think in the comment section. Will keep you updated when its officially up to download in the US.
Sonic Runners is a new mobile game developed by the Sonic Team in Japan. We are soft-launching it in select countries to see how the game does and to work out any bugs. No decision has been made yet whether it will be released in the US or Europe. It will depend on our observations during the soft-launch phase which could take several months.
Tetsuya Mizuguchi has a long history of making games at SEGA, he was one of the people behind hits like SEGA Rally, Space Channel 5 and Rez. He would leave SEGA to pave his own path with hot IPs like Lumines, Meteos and Child of Eden. After Child of Eden, Mizuguchi took a break from the video game industry. Now he is back with his new mysterious puzzle game called 18.
The game is suppose to blend a mixture of puzzle mechanics and battle RPG elements. The title will be coming exclusively to mobiles (as of right now). The game will be released worldwide by Mobcast.
Above is the trailer and below are the screenshots. If this game is giving you a Catherine vibe, your not the only one. It definitely looks artistically inspired by Atlus’ hit game.
Demiurge Studios is a small scale studio that has worked with a multitude of publishers on not only mobile games, but ports of their existing IPs. If you go to their listed games page, you will see how many franchises the studio has worked on, including ports for Bioshock Infinite, Borderlands and Mass Effect.
This opportunity to partner with SEGA Networks has come about in no small part from the success of Marvel Puzzle Quest.
According to them, the main reason for SEGA Networks interest in buying the team was the success they had with Marvel Puzzle Quest, which is a mobile game. This doesn’t mean that the studio won’t do ports or other console based work; but like we suspected, SEGA is interested in them for their mobile talent.
Sooner or later, we wanted to build a publishing organization. When we looked at the talent amassed and success accumulated within SEGA Networks, we couldn’t fathom doing it as well as SEGA had already done. Our new teammates are wildly successful in Japan not just financially but also creatively. Games like Chain Chronicles and Puyo Puyo Quest are a master-class in how to build great mobile, free-to-play experiences. The team we’re working with in San Francisco is an insane mix of talent: Part veteran game-makers from SEGA, part free-to-play pioneers from Three Rings and part entrepreneurial mobile start-up – all backed by this huge incredible team at SEGA Networks in Japan. It almost feels unfair to get to have this group working alongside us!
They sound like a great team and I think SEGA made a great decision adding them to their American branch of mobile studios. Did you see? They mentioned Puyo Puyo Quest, can’t wait to see what games they have in the works.
This was actually posted over at Gamasutra an hour ago and seems the article was taking down. The article was about how SEGA Networks has been investing money in Western mobile developers this month, some of the studios being ‘up and coming’. As you know, SEGA has been trying to focus on the ‘free-to-play’ market, even recently made a deal with Gumi so that they could bring their Japanese mobile games to America. They are the ones that have published the popular Chain Chronicles.
So what studios has SEGA Networks invested money in?
Demiurge Studios: A Boston based studio that made Marvel Puzzle Quest (and a ton of other games) is now owned by SEGA. Studio founder Albert Reed will take a executive role at SEGA and work on running the studio.
Space Ape Games: SEGA has a majority stake in a UK-based developer that created the F2P title Samurai Siege. The developer recently announced that it raised $7 million dollars in funding, is preparing for its second F2P title that SEGA Networks will release in Japan.
Ignited Artists: Is a new developers studio based in San Francisco. As of now they haven’t released a game.
Since SEGA Networks released Super Monkey Ball on the Apple app store in 2008, they have put out over 85 mobile games and if the way things are going forward mean anything, is that they will continue to grow the business. Their last mobile studio they purchased was Hardlight Studios that have delivered the massively successful Sonic Dash and Crazy Taxi: City Rush games. If anything in the story changes, we will keep you updated.
Sonic Runners is going to be Sonic Team’s big Sonic the Hedgehog mobile developed game and SEGA has finally released the first teaser trailer. You can watch it above. The trailer basically goes through the history of Sonic Team developed Sonic games and starts off with a counter, counting down the years to 2015…
Something to note: The trailer only shows off the retro series and Sonic the Hedgehog 4 (if you count that as part of the retro series). Could this game be more influenced by older retro style Sonic games instead of the recent games?
The site features an image of Sonic, Tails, and Knuckles running through Sonic Lost World‘s Windy Hill with Chao and the Mother Wisp from Sonic Colors DS floating above. Could the classic clips and Sonic 4 indicate that Sonic Team sees Sonic Runners as a successor to the originals, or hint toward a gameplay style? What’s with the Chao and Wisps?
UPDATE: An interview between Iizuka and Famitsu lists a end of February release for the game in Japan. From what we can understand from the interview, characters will run forward on their own and Eggman will make appearances during stages which there appears to be 50 of at first (if we are reading the translation correctly). Tails and Knuckles are also playable, but Sonic is the only character initially available. Famitsu also went hands-on with the game, mentioning a cutscene featuring Sonic, Tails, and Eggman. Jumping appears to vary based on where you tap on the screen, possibly indicating that you tap on enemies to homing attack. The Eggman boss battle appears to have Sonic throwing or knocking back Eggman’s projectiles to defeat him.
It seems that Hardlight Studios has another hit on their hands with Crazy Taxi: City Rush, as it topped the most downloaded game lists on iOS for August. Even though most fans where disappointed that it wasn’t a full fledged arcade experience, SEGA and Hardlight did have the designer of the franchise (Kenji Kanno) was brought in to help in development. The new mobile take on the franchise seems to be a hit, we even gave it a good review.
Crazy Taxi franchise is 15 years old, so its nice to know that a new generation of gamers will know what Crazy Taxi is and hopefully the brand doing well on mobile will open doors for a brand new home console release. We can dream, can’t we?
SEGA has finally revealed their line-up publicly for next week Tokyo Game Show this will include SEGA published games, Atlus and even titles by other publishers that will be shown at their booth. Some of them are big western publishers without enough Japanese presence like Electronic Arts and Warner Bros. and others are just small Japanese companies without means like Silver Star Japan and Compile Heart.
SEGA is set to hold a number of stage events including one on Septermber 18th when the company will announce a new Hatsune Miku game, Atlus will get their own stage show on September 20th and Yakuza 0 will get a variety of stage shows planned throughout TGS.
Famitsu reveals that SEGA has a new free-to-play ‘online theater RPG’ video game as they describe it. It will be launched this winter in Japan on the Playstation Vita, mobile and PC. Save data is said to carry over to all three platforms, online servers are also shared meaning cross-platform online play is a possibility.
The game seems to be online only and will have simplified RTS like elements that let you build, explore and fight. Battles are said to be mostly automated with ‘fast-forward and pause buttons’. I can see this be SEGA’s take on the ever popular Clash of Clans franchise.