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New Games from Japan

New Games from Japan
New Games from Japan
Konami To Release "Non-Touch" Dancing Game

Konami are to release a game that would have certainly got the approval of Catholic priests in rural 1950's Ireland. A "non-touch" dancing game. The game is called "Dance Maniacs" and is due for release in Japan at the end of June.

The machine will be equipped with a total of eight sensors to monitor the player's movements. As in previous Konami dance games, the player has to move according to instructions on the screen. The machine will have a total of 25 songs.

Moody's Upgrades Capcom Debt

Moody's Investors Service has raised its outlook on Capcom's unsecured long-term bonds from "stable" to "positive". Moody's cites improvements in the company's financial position and a more stable outlook for profits in the medium term.

Moody's points to the convertible debentures that were converted into stock in March 2000 reducing the debenture repayment burden and the Capcom's ventures with Sony, Sega and Nintendo as reducing the risk associated with changes in market share of the home video games hardware manufacturers.

Capcom's consumer game share in Japan is 6.2% and about 5% in both Europe and the USA. In the past year, Capcom had huge hits with "Bio Hazard" and "Dino Crisis" leading to a 34% increase in revenue for the fiscal year.

Moody's also points to Capcom's strategy in selling third-party software as having a stabilizing effect on future earnings. For example, it sells the game software of the English developer Eidos and the American software house Havas Interactive. Capcom is also reportedly in negotiations for a similar venture with Virgin Interactive Entertainment.

An area of concern for Moody's is Capcom's coin-op division and how Capcom plans to return it to profitability.

New Namco Driver "Kart Duel"

On June 13, Namco held a private show in Japan to preview its releases for the summer season. The line-up included video, medal and prize games. Based on the number of units on display, Namco were pushing the puzzle game "Mr Driller 2" which features a versus-mode. A version of "World Kicks" for normal cabinets was also on display. By changing the control panel and using an analog button, any normal arcade cabinet can be used.

"Kart Duel" is a kart-racing drive game. The seats are the same as a real go-kart machine and the DX version features moving seats. Two machines can be linked.

"Technovelk" is another attempt by Namco to knock Konami off its perch as king of the music machines. It uses a Yamaha keyboard and so is similar to Konami's "Keyboard Mania". The machine has some 22+ songs.

Stories with thanks to Manjiro Works - www.manjiro.com


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