Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima present BALAN WONDERWORLD, a new platformer published by Square Enix

While we’re quite late in covering this, I did think it was necessary to news the reveal of Yuji Naka and Naoto Ohshima’s project at Square Enix seeing as we had an article about Naka’s Square Enix project last year. BALAN WONDERWORLD is an entirely new 3D action-platformer with hints of NiGHTS into Dreams and classic Squaresoft art styles. As described in the video above, the game features a costume system (of which there are over 80) which gives the player various actions. Different costumes will allow the player to solve the game’s puzzles and progress through the stages.

Sonic Co-Creator Yuji Naka working on original action game at Square Enix


We’ve known since last year that Yuji Naka had joined Square Enix, where he said he was returning as a programmer for the first time since 1997. Now he updated us on Twitter with a message on his birthday:

“Thank you for your birthday message. Today I’m 54 years old. How many games will I be able to make by the retirement age, including the original action game that I’m currently making at Square Enix? I’d like to work hard to develop a game that everyone around the world can enjoy.”

It will be interesting to see what Yuji Naka has in store for us in the near future, even if it isn’t under SEGA’s publishing arm.

[Via: Gematsu]

Sonic co-creator Yuji Naka joins SQUARE ENIX, returns to programming

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Yuji Naka has always been a big name to SEGA fans, not only did he program Sonic the Hedgehog on the SEGA Genesis/Mega Drive, he also has a long history of being a company man. Yuji Naka’s first game for SEGA started way back in the SG-1000 days with Girl’s Garden (in 1984!). After that he helped launch SEGA classics such as NiGHTs Into Dreams…, Samba De Amigo, ChuChu Rocket!, Burning Rangers, Phantasy Star Online, and the list goes on.

Phantasy Star Online 2 to feature NieR: Automata DLC

phantasystaronline2NierAutomataSeems that the Phantasy Star Online 2 promotions continue, this time with NieR: Automata themed DLC. Square Enix announced that DLC cross promotions will be happening on not only Phantasy Star Online 2 but also Hunter Frontier Z.

It seems that Phantasy Star Online 2 will be getting weapons and armor taken directly from the upcoming Square Enix title. Not much is known but Square Enix has suggested that they will share more information on what the items are in NieR: Automata after New Years. Since Phantasy Star Online 2 hasn’t made it west, we will be missing out on all these cool cross promotions that Japan gets to enjoy. I even whined about this, remember?

NieR: Automata hits Japanese retail on February 23, North America on March 7 and Europe on March 10,2017. While Phantasy Star Online 2 isn’t released in English speaking countries, you can always use a fan patch and play on the Japanese servers. What are your thoughts on this cross promotion?

[Source: Siliconera]

Phantasy Star Nova getting Valkyrie Profile, Star Ocean and Resonance of Fate outfits

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Seems that the developers behind Phantasy Star Nova aren’t going afraid of putting their personal touch on the long running SEGA RPG franchise. Announced at this year’s Tokyo Game Show the game is set to have costumes from previous Tri-Ace games which include Valkyrie Profile, Star Ocean and the SEGA published Resonance of Fate.

Even though all the games above are developed by Tri-Ace, Valkyrie Profile and Star Ocean are both published and owned by Square-Enix. I wonder how hard it was to convince Square-Enix on allowing them to use their franchises in  Phantasy Star Nova.

Phantasy Star Nova is set to release in Japan this November exclusively for the Playstation Vita. What about us in the West? No release date planned, yet. Hit the jump for screenshots.

Awesome Vanquish Action Figure from Square Enix

I had always thought that Square Enix only churned out Final Fantasy action figures. But apparently they do more than just Cloud and Yuffie, they also have produced stunning figures of characters from Metal Gear Solid, Batman: Arkham Asylum and even SEGA’s own Vanquish. Revealed at Comic Con is this amazingly detailed Sam Gideon. I mean, just LOOK at that thing! Makes my Ninja Turtles and Ghostbusters figures of the 90’s look like crap by comparison. Of course, with great details and articulation comes a great price: figures in the Play Arts Kai line retail for around $40-$50. Thats more than I spent on my copy of Vanquish! Of course, the figure looks great, so I could easily see the price being justified. Just think of it as a statue and the $50 doesn’t seem so bad.

Square Enix’s Yoichi Wada says SEGA failed at Globalization.

“We have to appeal to customers with different preferences. Sega did not succeed. Konami did not succeed. Namco Bandai did not succeed. Western publishers have not succeeded in selling in Japan. Nobody has succeeded at globalisation,”

Bold claims from Square Enix CEO Yoichi Wada. He goes on to say;

“But it hasn’t succeeded because it was always based on Japanese direction. It was Japanese people who commissioned the western developers to make games.”

“It is important that what’s in America should be handled by Americans… The same goes in Europe and in Japan. These people who are deeply rooted in their own cultures can engage in their own dialogues. The mistakes I have seen so far are when Japanese people try to do everything the Japanese way, using Japanese workers in different areas of the world.”

An interesting point of view, but with SEGA’s great successes in Europe and America in recent years do these claims have much weight behind them?

[SOURCE: Next-Gen.biz]

SEGAbits teams up with Square-Enix fan site


We promised an exciting future for SEGAbits and we are going to deliver. We have decided to team up with a Final Fantasy website and launch Square-Enix Bits; which we hope will be your number one source for Final Fantasy and Square-Enix related news.

As a way to celebrate our new venture, we have decided to theme our site in celebration of this event. Have fun and remember, blue skies in games.