With all the Japanese companies refocusing their strategy back to the East, Aniplex is going against the trend and is making plans to release their mega hit Grand Fate / Order game to the west.
Who is Aniplex ?
Established in 1985, Aniplex is a Japanese anime and music production owned by Sony Music Entertainment Japan. Aniplex core business is to plan, product, and distribute several anime series worldwide. Popular anime series like, Fullmetal Alchemist, Blood: The Last Vampire, Persona 4: The Animation are just some of the titles in their lengthy portfolio. Aniplex has recently ventured into the mobile application space in 2014 and released their first F2P Rpg game Grand Fate / Order on July 29, 2015.
What is Fate Grand / Order ?
First released on July 29, 2015, this game is based on the Fate / Stay Night visual novel game and franchise by Type moon. This F2P turn based RPG game is centered around a player who takes on a role of a ‘Master’, who summons and commands powerful ‘servants’ in battle against their enemies. Each servant has its own personalities which the player can explore as they progress through the game.
Fate Grand / Order Synopsis
In 2015, the final era where sorcery still exists, the Chaldea Security Organization, its numerous projects having guaranteed humanity’s existence through to the next century, discovers that the future they have observed no longer exists, and calculates that humanity will now go extinct in 2016. It traces the cause of this event to an anomaly that has appeared in 2004 in Fuyuki City. To avert the extinction of mankind, Chaldea decides to use its sixth experiment, time travel, converting its agents into spirit particles and sending them through time to destroy the space-time anomalies that will cause humanity’s extinction. The name of this mission: “Grand Order”, the name for those who would rise up against human history for the sake of humans, and fight fate itself.
What’s the significance of this release
If you look at how Grand Fate / Order charts in Japan, it’s one of the few games that have charted #1 in gross ranking and has made a lot of headway with the success of it release. Their expansion to the West is another step in how Aniplex looks to diversify their portfolio and also build on their extensive library of IP. The curiosity lies in how they look to roll out this title as games like Colopl, Rune Story and Mixi’s Monster Strike has both struck out in the West. The one thing that is going with Aniplex’s Grand Fate / Order is that it’s game is not an original IP but an existing popular IP within the Anime Community so the initial downloads will be a lot more generous versus pure social mobile companies in the east looking to build a community in the west from scratch. Dragon Ball Dokkan Battle is a good example on how a pure Japanese company can leverage the IP to find relevance in the West, even with the game being designed as the traditional TCG style game. That being said, Dragon Ball is a massive IP compared to Grand Fate Order and it’ll be interesting to see how they look to execute their plans in the West.
Developed by Delightworks, the North American version will be published by Aniplex of America and looks to release in the Canada and the US territories at the same time. The North American version will be released as a separate SKU therefore players already playing on the Japanese version looking to migrate over, they will have to start the game from scratch.
Yosuke Shiokawa, creative director of Fate/Grand Order has stated that he wants the gameplay experience to be exactly the same way as the Japanese version and there will be no exclusive content based on territory. Ie Japan only Servant characters.
Fate Grand / Order looks to be released in the Summer of 2017 and for the Japanese Mobile industry, many will be watching how they succeed as they will be travelling to a place where many of Japanese Companies have failed.
Good Luck Aniplex.
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