How Many Games Does NIS America Pass On Publishing?

By Spencer . March 8, 2010 . 6:02pm

image Roughly twenty to thirty percent. “Maybe two or three out of ten titles, I get the license. We have many offers, but many of them I have to reject,” Haru Akenaga, President of NIS America, said to OtakuXGamer.


When NIS America opened their doors they started publishing games developed by Gust (Atelier, Ar Tonelico) and Idea Factory (Spectral Force). We still see a fair amount of Gust titles from NIS America, but the number of Idea Factory titles have dropped. Why?


“When we started, Gust and Idea Factory licensed their titles to us. Since then, we’ve kept a good relationship with them. That’s why, basically, I don’t reject the titles from Gust. But Idea Factory – they have lots of titles, so we cannot do everything. We just get a few titles from them. But other companies – many of the titles I have to reject.” Other publishers such as Yukes, Atlus, and soon Ignition with Spectral Force Genesis stepped in to pick up Idea Factory’s games.


Be sure to head over to OtakuXGamer for the full interview, its a good read that touches on SCEA’s stance on visual novels and Akenaga’s thoughts on which genres NIS America should work with.

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  • LastFootnote

    I’m getting déjà vu here. Haven’t I read this exact article before? Maybe I read these quotes elsewhere.

    Speaking of things repeating, not to sound like a broken record, but what’s NISA’s policy on bringing over NIS’s games? Any word on those?

    • JeremyR

      Well, the date on the article linked to is Jan 22nd, so not really a new story…

      • lordgeo

        True, but at least this guy was a lot more friendly when it came to a company like Idea Factory. The last person from NISA who talked about Idea Factory pretty much insulted the company… Which then made him sound a little stupid after NISA continued to release Idea Factory titles and IF even was the company that got the whole Sakura Wars localization started, even though one of NISA’s heads pretty much insulted them.

        At least this explanation makes more sense from a business standpoint: Idea Factory does make a lot of games per year, so it’s easily understandable that a number don’t make it… Let alone the fact that Idea Factory makes a lot of visual novels, especially for Sony systems, and NISA pretty much has indicated that SCEA doesn’t want straight-up visual novels released in North America.

        • Artavasdus

          Yeah, I too was apalled when I read those insults. Not only were they utterly unpolite, a rare thing when it cames to japanese companies, but they were even more ludicrous considering NiSA’s continuing involvement with Idea Factory and Compile Heart (Cross Edge, Sakura Taisen 5’s Wii port, Trinity Universe’s japanese publishing).

          Even more so, bashing on IF after three Psp ports is truly a poor way to judge their lineup, which is still largely unknown in the west and comprises many interesting titles (they are the only ones still interested in making Dragon Force-like grand strategy jrpgs, for example).

          As a side note, I found quite amusing to see a representative of NiSA bashing Idea Factory when they are still giving complete support to Hitmaker’s titles :P

  • I was hoping Yuke’s could turn into something great, but they’re totally dead in the water. Same deal with our “friends” at O~3.

    • Artavasdus

      True, O3 hasn’t even a site anymore and Yuke’s apparently lost any interest in jrpgs after Neverland CB :

      Well, at least Aksys has joined the fray with Laevatein, Agarest and Mimana (before them they had localized Hoshigami Remix and From the Abyss, but I was cautious to see it as a trend), let’s hope they became a third pillar of the jrpg fanbase alongside with Atlus USA and NiSA (and maybe Ghostlight in Europe, if they are willing to continue their Pal localizations of low budget jrpgs with Agarest Zero or some other title).

  • kupomogli

    “Even Prinny – some people didn’t like it because it’s an action game.”

    Prinny is the best NIS game. The RPG titles suck with nothing but grinding, barely any real strategy, and retarded AI. Make more games you’re good at making, action titles, because it sure isn’t RPGs.

    • LastFootnote

      I can’t say that I agree with your assessment of their SRPGs. Yes, you can grind, and you’ll have to in order to get through all the post-game content. However, if you don’t grind going through the main story, an NIS SRPG can be a fun challenge.

      I do agree that Prinny is their best game, though. It’ll be a real shame if NISA decides not to localize Prinny 2. That game looks amazing.

    • Artavasdus

      I am not a big fan of NiSA’s tactical power playing style either (I like way more the positional emphasis of Fire Emblem), but to say that titles like La Pucelle, Disgaea or Soul Nomad “suck” is a dramatically subjective statement, especially when NiS has single-handedly revolutionized the tactical jrpgs scene with their approach. Their tactical titles may not suit every player’s taste, but they are far from being bad games.

  • I still think NIS is probably the best hope for any Idea Factory visual novel, just because they have worked with IF in the past. Deep down, I really hope one day that NIS takes a chance on Hiiro no Kakera or one of the other visual novels.

  • masuto

    And that’s why they’re losing money?

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