Rumours from Europe have it that Sega are hot on the heels of Namco with their own go-kart themed driving game. Sega Japan are denying the existence of such a game saying the only driving game they will show at JAMMA is "NASCAR Arcade". Our European contacts say they have seen it on the Sega web-site. We have not found this particular web-site yet but will keep looking.
Nintendo To Open Pokemon Shops Around World
Encouraged by the continuing worldwide popularity of its Pocket Monster("POKEMON") video game characters, Nintendo is planning to open Pokemon stores in over ten major cities worldwide starting from next year. The shops will sell goods based on the Pokemon characters. There are already two Pokemon shops in Japan, in Tokyo and Osaka. The first overseas outlets will be in New York and London.
Square To List on NASDAQ, Enter Movie Biz
The U.S. movie-making subsidary of the Japanese consumer video game developer Square is to apply for a listing on the American NASDAQ over-the-counter market from Autumn 2001. Square USA is to use the funds to break into Hollywood. The company is presently making a $100 million computer-graphics movie version of the famous home video game "Final Fantasy". It plans to release the movie to over 2,000 theaters in the USA in summer 2001, just before the planned NASDAQ listing. In an agreement with Columbia Pictures, Square USA is to produce three computer-graphic movies, with half of the costs being covered by Columbia.
SNK Move Into Aruze HQ
As of August 28, SNK Corporation moved its head offices to Ariake, Tokyo where the HQ of Aruze Corp, SNK's parent company. is situated. Ever since 1978 when SNK was founded, its headquarters have been in Osaka.
Konami Raise Fiscal Year Forecast
Konami have raised their forecast for the fiscal year ending March 2001. The better-than-expected figures are due to the continued success of the company's card game "Yu-Gi-Oh" and the planned listing of its subsidiary KCE Tokyo (see previous news story). Konami are forecasting profit to be 46% higher than originally forecast on May 16.
Konami Get FIFPro Soccer License
Konami's prize-winning International Superstar Soccer series for the Play Station is about to step up a notch in realism. Konami have secured a license from the professional soccer players' organization FIFPro to use real players' names in future editions of the game.
According to Daily Radar, Konami have also signed a deal with sportswear maker Umbro to raise the level of realism in its soccer games. At the recent consumer game show "ECTS2000" in London, Konami was awarded the prize for best home video game in Italy for its game "International Superstar Soccer Pro Evolution".
Special thanks to Manjiro Works for these news stories.
Manjiro Works Inc. exports top quality coin-operated machines from Japan around the world.