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Hakuouki in English


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#41 Ningyo

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Posted 27 July 2011 - 09:21 AM

I think it's great news, was really surprised when I heard it first.

It's too bad that there are so many obstacles to getting a game released though! Such a shame.

Will definitely get this and support the cause :) (Along with the Fate/Extra game...)

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#42 tam-timmy-toe

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Posted 28 July 2011 - 12:06 AM

I for one am excited even if Hakuouki is hmmm (and Starry Sky even more so) but hey at least my friends won't have legit reasons to refuse playing otoges anymore. :mrgreen: Anything to drag people down the otoge pit. =DD
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#43 Kristy Kent

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Posted 28 July 2011 - 05:46 AM

I'm tres excited!!!!!! What about the DS? Will it be on that too or is it just the PSP? (That would be sad if it was just on the PSP because I have a DS and I really want this game, BAD!!!!!!)

#44 Savvy

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 02:16 AM

A recent Idea Factory interview on Siliconera has them thanking the loyal otome fans of this forum. They also name drop Hiiro no Kakera as being clamored for by fans along with Hakuoki, so if Hakuoki does well I think I know what we'll be getting next... :smile:

#45 indigozeal

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Posted 06 August 2011 - 02:37 AM

It's great that Idea Factory consented to have an otome game ported. That said: I resist the continued attempt by some companies to sell the idea that certain titles will get ported/created only if "the fans want it enough." The industry's been through this before, most recently with Xenoblade/Last Story/Pandora's Tower/Mega Man Legends 3/God knows what else. Businesses don't operate based on the demands of a small segment of the fan population. They have models and other methods of predicting the viability of a product in a certain market. Whether those models are as reliable as they should be is up for debate, but I am tired of certain companies insisting that [title] will see an English release only if we clap our hands and believe in Tinkerbell.

#46 Savvy

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Posted 08 August 2011 - 10:35 PM

It's great that Idea Factory consented to have an otome game ported. That said: I resist the continued attempt by some companies to sell the idea that certain titles will get ported/created only if "the fans want it enough." The industry's been through this before, most recently with Xenoblade/Last Story/Pandora's Tower/Mega Man Legends 3/God knows what else. Businesses don't operate based on the demands of a small segment of the fan population. They have models and other methods of predicting the viability of a product in a certain market. Whether those models are as reliable as they should be is up for debate, but I am tired of certain companies insisting that [title] will see an English release only if we clap our hands and believe in Tinkerbell.


That seems like an awfully negative view to have. Sure Nintendo and Capcom are big business that care more about sales models and hard numbers than fan outcry, but not every company is run that way. Some of the smaller publishers such as NIS, Atlus, and yes, Aksys thrive entirely on niche games for which there is very little sales data.

There is almost zero evidence that an otome game can be profitable, and yet Aksys is bringing one over anyway. Maybe there are other factors involving separate market mediums at play, but the increased presence of the otome fan community isn't lost on them. They're still going to want to make money, as does every company, but a steadfast and vocal community is one that can guarantee at least some percentage of sales.

#47 indigozeal

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 07:14 PM

Sure Nintendo and Capcom are big business that care more about sales models and hard numbers than fan outcry, but not every company is run that way.


But they kinda have to be about the numbers if they want to stay in business, don't they? I'm sure that Aksys/Atlus/etc. are staffed by plenty of folks who love games - but they can't go chasing projects that they know won't sell, for pure reasons of survival. If they're devoting staff resources to porting an otome game, it's because they think there's enough of an English-speaking market to support it, not because they want to do otome fans a favor (even if they indeed would like to do so).

I'm not arguing that's wrong; it's perfectly OK for businesses to undertake projects for financial reasons, for a business to act like a business. Where I object is when they pretend that it's otherwise, to pretend that a financially-driven business decision was taken "because fans demanded it" to get good PR (and suggest that future releases depend on how much fans are willing to stump for them). Game companies are hardly alone in using this tactic, but it's being invoked an awful lot lately by the fan-darling game companies to a frustratingly unquestioned degree. I understand that you can't let fans plan a company's release schedule - but it's not nice to jerk them around, either. It's OK to be honest about your decision-making process.

#48 Savvy

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Posted 09 August 2011 - 10:33 PM

But they kinda have to be about the numbers if they want to stay in business, don't they? I'm sure that Aksys/Atlus/etc. are staffed by plenty of folks who love games - but they can't go chasing projects that they know won't sell, for pure reasons of survival. If they're devoting staff resources to porting an otome game, it's because they think there's enough of an English-speaking market to support it, not because they want to do otome fans a favor (even if they indeed would like to do so).


But why do they think the english speaking market will support it? Princess Debut sold less than 10k copies. Yo-Jin-Bo's publisher Hirameki went out of business, and JastUSA has been vague with further sales data. There are no otome game sales projections for them to go off of, which is why they polled the fans on the Aksys site asking if they would buy an otome game. Isn't that basically just asking the fans what they want?


I'm not arguing that's wrong; it's perfectly OK for businesses to undertake projects for financial reasons, for a business to act like a business. Where I object is when they pretend that it's otherwise, to pretend that a financially-driven business decision was taken "because fans demanded it" to get good PR (and suggest that future releases depend on how much fans are willing to stump for them). Game companies are hardly alone in using this tactic, but it's being invoked an awful lot lately by the fan-darling game companies to a frustratingly unquestioned degree. I understand that you can't let fans plan a company's release schedule - but it's not nice to jerk them around, either. It's OK to be honest about your decision-making process.


I just don't think listening to the fans and good business sense are mutually exclusive. It could be the clamoring of the fans that gets a company to look into the market viability of a game in the first place. In some cases it might even work against the publisher, as NIS has stated their releasing of Rhapsody on the DS due to fan demand did not go well for them. On the other end of the spectrum, there's the huge fan campaign to get Umineko released, and is unlikely to happen because of the visual novel restrictions in NA, but these companies being petitioned have yet to promise the impossible.

I don't see why it would be a bad thing for these smaller companies to claim the fan's efforts. It's possible a smaller company might just check out what's going on in their forums and publish what's popular, saving money on market research. And fan word of mouth can help with marketing costs as well, so it helps them out to keep a positive relationship with the fans. Privately owned companies that don't have to cater to stockholders have a lot more freedom to pay attention to the niche audiences, and what better way to understand those audiences than to listen to the fans?

#49 indigozeal

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Posted 11 August 2011 - 03:30 PM

But why do they think the english speaking market will support it?


Well, one could respond that all three of those publishers are/were relative small fries with limited promotional resources publishing small games often with or in venues of questionable content (Hirameki's Animamundi gets quite a bit into mature material; J-List sells nearly nothing but hentai). Aksys is a firmly-established midlevel developer who's starting out with the #1 big gun in the otome market today. The situations aren't really comparable.

We don't know the data they have or what metrics Aksys used to evaluate their decision; corporations generally don't make that sort of internal data public. But we do know that companies aren't charities, through...well, all of capitalism, basically. Employees gotta eat. Shareholders gotta see sound business decisions to keep investing.

NIS has stated their releasing of Rhapsody on the DS due to fan demand did not go well for them.


But NIS never intended to lose money. They thought the rerelease would sell better, and it didn't pan out for them.

It's possible a smaller company might just check out what's going on in their forums and publish what's popular, saving money on market research.


If companies used forum chatter as a guideline for games' popularity, then we would've had The World Ends with You 2, Elite Beat Agents 2, Xenoblade/Last Story/Pandora's Tower/Mega Man Legends 3/etc.etc.etc. long ago. Fan tastes and the tastes of the general public don't always coincide, and fanbases, even vibrant ones, aren't always populous enough to give a release the sales a company deems it needs.

I'd love to be a kingmaker in this process, too, but we're just not. Of course it's great for companies to seek actively a positive relationship with the fanbase (and, of course, we're getting great news with the Hakuouki release), but I think that being dishonest about how publishing decisions are made isn't the way to go about it.

#50 Savvy

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Posted 12 August 2011 - 04:13 AM

...My points don't seem to be coming across here. This thread was supposed to be about Hakuoki, so I'm just gonna sum up one more time and then I'm done.

Aksys is a firmly-established midlevel developer who's starting out with the #1 big gun in the otome market today. The situations aren't really comparable.


Being big in Japan is by no means any proof that it will do well over in the states. That is the main reason why Koei and Konami refuse to bring over their popular otome franchises. Also, Princess Debut was published by Natsume, and they're not exactly small time.

We don't know the data they have or what metrics Aksys used to evaluate their decision; corporations generally don't make that sort of internal data public. But we do know that companies aren't charities, through...well, all of capitalism, basically. Employees gotta eat. Shareholders gotta see sound business decisions to keep investing.


I seriously doubt Aksys is expecting to make a huge profit on Hakuoki. It's from a nearly nonexistent genre on a practically dead system. They'll hopefully make enough money back to consider publishing more otome games, but it's not going to be a cash cow like BlazBlue.

And privately owned companies don't have to cater to shareholders. They may have investors to fund a big project, but if they can get enough money to support themselves they can do whatever they want. You know, passion projects, not made for the money but because they really want to.

But NIS never intended to lose money. They thought the rerelease would sell better, and it didn't pan out for them.


The point is they thought it would sell because of the fans. Fans ask for something and companies can see a potential market there. Yeah they want to make money, but they were expecting to make money off of the fans.

If companies used forum chatter as a guideline for games' popularity, then we would've had The World Ends with You 2, Elite Beat Agents 2, Xenoblade/Last Story/Pandora's Tower/Mega Man Legends 3/etc.etc.etc. long ago. Fan tastes and the tastes of the general public don't always coincide, and fanbases, even vibrant ones, aren't always populous enough to give a release the sales a company deems it needs.


There is a huge difference between public and privately owned corporations. These games are from huge companies SquareEnix, Nintendo, and Capcom. They will not release a game if they cannot graph out a profits trajectory that looks good to stockholders if stockholders just point to a new Mario game and see a bigger return on investment.

I'd love to be a kingmaker in this process, too, but we're just not. Of course it's great for companies to seek actively a positive relationship with the fanbase (and, of course, we're getting great news with the Hakuouki release), but I think that being dishonest about how publishing decisions are made isn't the way to go about it.


The fact that you're painting these niche game companies as dishonest rubs me entirely the wrong way. Game developers aren't in the business simply for the money, they would have just become investment bankers if that were the case. Listening to fans can in some cases be a viable business strategy, and to suggest a studio is lying when they say so is wrong. Unless you have proof that they're just abusing the fan's good will then you're simply badmouthing them for no reason.

I myself work for a small, privately owned gaming company, and guess what? We make games because we love making games, to hell with the money. Nothing dishonest about it.

#51 indigozeal

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Posted 22 August 2011 - 07:06 PM

Well, Natsume is long-standing but not that big, not anymore; none of the companies mentioned have the heat or promotional power of an Aksys. And whether or not you take NIS's "for the fans" reason for the Rhapsody rerelease at face value, they plainly wouldn't do it over again, as no matter how many fans it made happy, it lost money for them, contrary to their expectations; sales were always the make-or-break in the decision. As for Hakuouki, I imagine that Aksys observed the Twilight-inspired rise in romance and gauged the pool of female gamers in the appropriate age group strong enough to support a game-based entry in the romance market. I don't think the "Japanese success != U.S. success, so all otome games are an equal risk" idea holds water or argues that the choice of Hakuouki wasn't strategic; if you were launching platformers in a new territory, would you really just as soon put your money behind The Great Giana Sisters as you would Super Mario Bros. 3?

I myself work for a small, privately owned gaming company, and guess what? We make games because we love making games, to hell with the money. Nothing dishonest about it.


OK, you love otome games, obviously. But your employer hasn't released any (or many) otome games previously; why not? Because you don't want to do your fellow fans a favor, because there isn't a faithful English-speaking otome fanbase, because that fanbase just doesn't love the games enough, because you hate games? No, of course not - it's because the gaming market hadn't matured enough to recognize females as a significant slice of the gaming market until recently; otome games are time-intensive and thereby expensive to translate; romance wasn't as hot a few years ago; employees can't recklessly indulge pet projects with disregard for sales; they might not fit in with your market slate or company image; etc. etc.

I'm not saying employees of Atlus/Aksys/etc. don't love games, not at all; I'm saying that they're not immune to the tyranny of the marketplace. Fostering the idea that fans dictate the schedule instead of the larger market - that companies make decisions on the basis of doing fans favors instead of what will sell enough to guarantee everyone still has a job tomorrow morning - is manipulative and creates hard feelings when reality inevitably lowers the boom (cf. the entire history of Working Designs PR). Gaming is a business, and there's no shame in acknowledging that.

Your points are indeed coming across; I just think they're incorrect. But, yes, I do think that our conceptualizations of the economics involved are irreconciliable and that we've perhaps reached the limit of further discussion.

#52 Tuzi

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Posted 22 August 2011 - 09:02 PM

My my, there are certainly some interesting discussions on here since last I visited o.O *peeks out from behind the table to view the destruction*

I'm very interested to see how Hakuouki is released here in the States, and I may very well buy a PSP just for this game. Then there are a few other games I would get to continue my growing addiction, haha.

But as for right now, until the actual release hits the market, there's no way to tell how the game will do. I'll keep my fingers crossed, but won't hold my breath.
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#53 Skyrius

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Posted 26 August 2011 - 06:28 PM

Ugh this is why I avoid arguments over business practices. In the end what it boils down to, regardless of what decisions went into choosing the game, is that if there's a game released that people want, it'll sell. If not, it won't. As of now I'm more concerned with finding more avenues to spread the news

#54 Cloudy

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Posted 31 August 2011 - 05:01 AM

I just hope enough people will buy the game to support it! Even though I'm not a huge Hakuoki fan I definitely will get it~

Also the forum on Aksys says something funny about it "Hot mans in old Japan". xD

#55 ayla

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Posted 12 October 2011 - 10:53 PM

PRE-ORDERS ARE UP ON AMAZON!

I'm guessing this is a release date then? No word on the official site last I checked. It says limited edition but I don't think the limited edition goodies were mentioned.

I'm so excited XDDD I can definitely pull off that price despite the upcoming holiday season wallet ripping!

#56 synchronicitykey

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Posted 13 October 2011 - 12:59 AM

OMG I never knew bout this until today, well eve thugh my hakuoki fandom isn't that strong I'll buy this to support Otomate. I might end up likig it ^^

Hopefully stores do get to bring this game here, would be nice if they do.



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#57 akuram

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Posted 22 October 2011 - 04:46 AM

Official English screenshots at their FB fanpage

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#58 Thief of Hearts

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Posted 25 October 2011 - 12:08 AM

I'm trying to keep a close eye on this. I am so excited that the company actually cared about this small little forum enough to take it's opinion seriously. That and they didn't give up on the idea. i've got twitter, fb, an aksys forum account all signed up lol. that and i'm trying to do word of mouth advertising as much as possible and encouraging others. even if this isn't their type of game, just let others know about it if they think the person might like it.

btw if anyone has a crunchyroll account and is a fan of the game, would you mind let the forums on crunchyroll that pertain to hakuouki know about the english localization? i dont have one and i've signed up for just about everything else; i dont want to overload my email account. i know even if the forums may look active, they will often pop up on google searches so it would be a good idea if there was a thread in those forums about it.

Edited by Thief of Hearts, 25 October 2011 - 12:47 AM.

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#59 SORA.h

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Posted 25 October 2011 - 03:16 PM

Ahhh, I'm curious about what does the limited edition includes. Judging from the price, it seems rather cheap for a limited edition game :o I was expecting it to go beyond the $80 mark...

Either way, I'm hoping to preorder it despite me not having the PSP itself yet 8D;;
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#60 Roses4Aria

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Posted 26 October 2011 - 06:51 PM

Siliconera has a post up announcing the release date as February 14, 2012. However, on Amazon it is showing up as February 15, 2012. Not sure which is correct.

A commenter on that Siliconera thread also indicated that they had received an e-mail from Amazon that there was a bigger demand than initially thought, so there may be a bit of a delay on shipping. Seems like this is probably true, as I just received my e-mail confirmation for pre-ordering the limited edition from Amazon and it is showing my delivery estimate as February 20th. That's with me being on Amazon Prime and usually getting two day shipping. That's great that there has been such a big demand, though it stinks that it will make the delivery a bit late. Anyway, if you are definitely planning on getting this then I'd say the sooner you pre-order the better.




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