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I hadn't heard of the Yo-Kai Watch series of video games, but if we haven't made pages for it, we should, because it's bigger than Pokemon in Japan right now. Not even kidding.
The Yo-Kai Watch video game was announced by Level-5 at the 2011 Tokyo Game Show. It was released in Japan for the Nintendo 3DS on July 11, 2013. As of February 2014, the game had sold over 500,000 retail copies. In January 2014, Level-5 filed for a trademark in the United States for "Yo-Kai Watch" and is currently gauging interest in a Western release.
On December 13, 2014, a third edition of Yo-Kai Watch 2 subtitled Shin'uchi (真打, "Headliner") was released in Japan, featuring characters and scenarios not initially included in Ganso and Honke. As of November 2014, the Ganso and Honke editions had sold a combined 2,881,810 copies. The Ganso and Honke versions sold over three million copies in 2014, making it the best-selling video game in Japan in 2014.
Various toys, such as the eponymous Yo-Kai Watch and Yo-Kai Medals, have been produced based on the series, receiving high commercial success. Hasbro will release a toy line based on the series worldwide in 2016.
The anime movie had the highest grossing opening weekend of any Japanese film since at least 2000, making ¥1,628,893,000 (US$13.58 million). As of January 6, 2015, its sixteenth day of release, the film had earned over ¥5 billion (US$42 million). By the following the week, it had grossed over ¥6.5 billion (US$55 million) at the Japanese box office.
Their annual toy fair used to have Pikachu dead center on the poster, now Pikachu has been relegated to the background and this year the front character on the poster was Jibanyan.
Ahh. I wanted to make the thread after we got an English trailer. Anyway, I'm excited. There aren't enough big games based off Pokemon, and this one is apparently really good from what I've heard. Plus there's a slim chance it can give the 3DS a second wind in the west, which would be great. Hopefully Level 5 doesn't run this series into the ground before it gains a foothold in the west, which could happen if the third game releases in the summer.
Also, Jibanyan was totally created to be a Pikachu killer. Pika (spark) + Chu (mouse cry) = Electric Mouse. Jiba (magnetic field) + Nyan (meow) = Magnetic Cat. The hints were there all along.
According to my friend who's taking Japanese, Jibanyan comes from 'jibakurei' which is Japanese for 'residual haunting', which is what Jibanyan is.
I'm kind of surprised that there doesn't seem to have been any further news about an international release since they said last year that it was coming this year. I wonder what's going on behind the scenes.
Viz Media is handling the anime in Europe. Hope this means we hear something about the games soon.
...Sigh. Goddammit Level 5. Hope you weren't too attached to Layton and Fantasy Life. So Level 5 just had their vision conference announcing a bunch of new projects. Naturally many of them include Yokai Watch.
Basically, Level 5 really likes that milk. Hopefully they don't burn out this franchise before it has a foothold in the west.
edited 7th Apr '15 6:53:07 AM by Sterok
Level5 is slowly becoming the Japanese counterpart of Activision...
A RIDE!? Did Pokemon even get that!?
EDIT: Misread 'the real' as 'the ride.'
edited 8th Apr '15 8:07:25 PM by lalalei2001
@Sterok: That is insane. It took Pokemon years to reach that level of milking. Fuck, not even Pokemon has ever went that far.
Here's to hoping it's good, though, and that L5 don't kill the goose for its golden eggs. All the signs point to a large, aggressive push in pursuit of those phat international greenbacks, and it would be depressing if things backfired.
edited 9th Apr '15 5:35:27 AM by mrsunshinesprinkles
Wow, I didn't know that every city street in the U.S had giant red, white and blue "USA!!!11ONEONEELENTYONE!" graffity everywhere.
This is japanese Eagleland to the extreme.
"Whoa! It's totally different from Japan!"
Yes and no? XD
Coming west Holiday 2015. Little later than I expected, but at least it's still this year. It does make me wonder if this is the big November title. Probably not, but I expect Nintendo to promote this a lot
Isn't there a conflict of interest here? I mean, Yokai Watch is the only mons series that's anywhere near Pokémon in terms of popularity (not counting conceptually similar but not video game based stuff like Transformers), so wouldn't it be in Nintendo's best interest to not get involved in any sort of competitors to their golden goose.
If it can sell 3DS's, I don't think Nintendo cares too much. No Pokemon this year, so this is probably the biggest gun they've got for the system. Definitely in Japan. Probable in the US seeing how the other choices are Pokemon Mystery Dungeon and a multiplayer Zelda. Being at the E3 Digital Event gives me hope that they'll advertise it heavily. I just wish they spent more time explaining what it is.
Don't worry about what it'll do to Pokemon. Despite my optimism there's no way it can replicate that success in the west. And Level 5 is known for milking their series until they're completely dry. The franchise will likely be done in 5 years unless it really takes off in the west.
Also, seems that it's 2016 for Europe.
Holiday this year is late for you? I wasn't expecting it until early next year at the earliest because of this.
We are finally getting it over here! As an enormous fan of the Mons genre, you have no idea how excited I am for this. Especially since we're (allegedly) getting the anime and toys too.
Apparently Japanese children are saying that they're flocking to Yokai Watch so much because it's something all their own. Pokemon is almost 20 years old, and to them is really becoming something for adults.
The milking hasn't stopped. Just Dance Yoaki Watch is now a thing.
I'm amazed that "Whoa! It's totally different from Japan!" isn't a meme.
Coming to North America November 6. A bit too close to Triforce Heroes, but the sooner the better, lest Yokai be buried in the holiday storm.
The anime is coming to Disney XD on October 5. Hopefully it's enough time for the show to build up a fanbase among kids so that they'll go bug their parents to get the game.
Hm, catchy theme song, though I'm sure there are folks incensed at this English version. It kind of reminds me of Doraemon, especially since the show's airing on DXD. I'm not sure how well the show will fare there though (Doraemon is still running, but I don't know how popular it really is and I can't really tell if it's all just reruns).
In any case, I'm actually hoping the series becomes pretty popular with kids in the states. I'm always up for another Mon-esque franchise, but most of them have had trouble latching on.
And since I just played Fantasy Life and LBX, I'm kind of on a Level 5 buzz right now (I even went back into Ni no Kuni after completely finishing it), so I'm now even more excited for the game when it comes out in November.
edited 22nd Sep '15 2:20:18 PM by Customer
The anime's out now, and so far I like what I see. The English names for all the Yokai are pretty cool.
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