Shin Red Katana’s Gorgeous Limited Edition Artwork

By Ishaan . March 8, 2011 . 12:55am

When the console version of Cave’s arcade shoot-em-up, Red Katana, releases on the Xbox 360 in Japan, it will be available in regular and limited editions. The Shin Red Katana limited edition will come in a special package that contains a soundtrack CD.


Artwork for the limited edition box (pictured to the right) was created by the character designer for Red Katana, Tachikawa Mushimaro. The limited edition version of the game will cost 9,240 yen ($112) while the regular edition will go for 7,140 yen ($87).


The Xbox 360 version has been revised with high definition graphics and “Red Katana Shin mode” which has additional stages and boss characters to shoot down. Both the regular and limited editions of the game will also come with a bonus for early buyers: a Voice Pack Content Card, which allows you to download voices that were newly recorded for Shin Red Katana on the Xbox 360. Cave uploaded a video of the new feature:



Unfortunately, Shin Red Katana will be region-locked when it releases in Japan on May 26h. Cave are interested in making the game available overseas, however, and encourage people in Europe to let Rising Star know if they’d like to see more Cave shooters in the region. Meanwhile, Aksys published Deathsmiles in the U.S. last year.

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  • joesz

    When I first saw the picture,I thought this was going to be about Kingdom Hearts 3.

    • If only Kingdom Hearts looked anywhere near that beautiful…

      • joesz

        it will,Hopefully.

        Well,The guy looked heavily like an older Sora. And that girl is Baminé,who will make an appearance in Kingdom Hearts 3.

        • [The Hunter] Doomrider

          It will look even better <3

          The guy looks like Adol… Baminé? Is she Naminé's Everybody-23/458=0?

          … What's that? You don't know what an Everybody-23/458=0 is? Why, when the nobody and the heart reunite on a rainy day at noon, an Everybody-23/458=0 is born.

          …"Why", you ask? Because Sora, obviously.

          • joesz


          • [The Hunter] Doomrider

            Killjoy =/

          • Ren

            What? That makes as much sense as the games’ stories.

          • All that algorithm is a good reason for me to stay away from that series…

          • [The Hunter] Doomrider

            Actually, I really like KH, but it’s way too easy to make fun of some of the game’s plot points =P

          • Man if I ever go back to KH (I’ve only played the first one) I’ll just play it for the gameplay and skip all the story parts, I can even play them in Japanese and I wouldn’t care.

  • mikanko

    Dear Aksys,

    Please localize Akai Katana.

    PS: Daifukatsu first though!

  • Aoshi00

    Again w/ the extra DLC voice card? I hope it would be packaged w/in the box so seller wouldn’t not include it… I think even Deathsmiles’ bonus voice DLC wasn’t included on the US ver right? And it was never sold on XBL either..Will pre-order from AmiAmi as soon as it goes up on the site (always a sucker for LE art and OST), cannot wait for another sweet 2D sprite horiontal shmup, loved Deathsmiles but wasn’t too crazy about DS2’s simple 3D graphics, they just don’t come that often :) Otomedius doesn’t count.. Muchi Pork/Bullet Soul, too much!

  • Dear cave. Please dont lock the region of the game

    • mikanko

      They’ve already announced it would be region locked because they wanted to see Aksys/Rising Star license it, and having it region locked makes it more profitable in the eyes of the US companies going out and taking that risk. Pink Sweets/Muchi Pork was region free because they acknowledged there was very very very little chance of it ever being licensed.

      • Code

        What!? But pig girls who ride laser shooting mecha pigs is universal concept loved by all omo; Seriously though I should import it, two Cave shmups for the price of one; I don’t think deals get better then that.

  • I like the regular edition’s cover art more, tbfh.

  • Why does Cave hate the PS3 so much? Did Itagaki leave Valhalla and is working with Cave now?

    • But even Itagaki is making a multiplat game at Valhalla, sooo yeah.

    • Of course! Not releasing games on a platform means the developers must hate that platform. It couldn’t possibly have anything to do with ease of development, or Sony refusing to approve their games—ala how they rejected Arika’s nearly-flawless Ketsui port.

      • Well I don’t think it has anything to do with Sony, they have approved other shmups so I don’t see why they wouldn’t approve Cave’s games, just sayin’.

        • What other retail shmups have they approved?

          There’s Mamoru-kun, which has polygonal graphics and had to be reworked for 16:9. Akai Katana fits the latter…but it’s not 3D. It’s not technically impressive at all, which I’d wager is one of the reasons you don’t see many VNs on PS3 either. I can’t think of any others.

          Maybe Sony would approve Akai Katana as a PSN title, or as a physical release toward the end of the PS3’s lifecycle. They tend to ease up on their restrictions then.

          • malek86

            “Maybe Sony would approve Akai Katana as a PSN title”

            But then it would be Cave not approving the idea, since they sell the game at full price on 360 (and it’s a very high price), a PSN version with a much lower price tag would both give them lower returns and cannibalize 360 sales.

          • Well, yeah — that much was assumed. :)

          • Sorry I’m dumb I was referring to PSN titles and not retail releases. I didn’t know Cave didn’t like downloadable games, it makes sense now, thanks.

      • neo_firenze

        Sony didn’t reject the PS2 Ketsui port, Arika scrapped the project because they couldn’t manage to do an arcade-perfect port of Stage 5 on the PS2 hardware. Blame Mihara (VP of Arika) for that one, not Sony. Sony had no issues approving tons of other PS2 shooters either – the only Cave ports that generation were on PS2 (DDP DOJ and Espgaluda from Arika, Ibara and Mushihimesama published by Taito), and there were plenty of shooters from other developers.

        But really the current situation with 360 being the dominant shooter console has very little to do with the software approval processes. It’s more an issue of the J-360 being where the niche (and rather hardcore and willing to support the genre) shooter fanbase is. At first 360 got some of these games due to it being easier to program for and having cheaper SDKs, but those earlier games in turn led Japanese fans of the genre to get 360s. Now that there are better tools available and more knowledge, it’s a lot easier to work with PS3… but that’s somewhat irrelevant, since from a pure “where are the fans of our niche genre” perspective, 360 easily wins. PS3 and Wii may have more widespread mainstream popularity in Japan, but the hardcore shooter fans who support the new releases do have 360s. Despite some importers, publishers also don’t bother considering gamers outside of Japan, and reasonably so, since Japan is the only region that really supports the genre well enough to make a big difference.

        If you really love shooters, just go ahead and import a Japanese 360. As a bonus, very few western released games are region locked, so most of them will work on a Japanese system. In comparison, a lot more Japanese games are still region locked so they won’t play on anything but a Japanese machine.

        • There’s more to the story than that. Mihara ported the PS2 version to PS3. He wanted to release it as a launch title, but when he showed it to SCEI, they told him he should work on something more “PS3 quality”.

          • neo_firenze

            I had never heard of that, but upon searching it was apparently based on some Mihara blog comment. If you’ve followed Mihara at all over the past few years, you probably know to take everything he says with a wheelbarrow full of salt. He’s a notorious drama queen with who likes to stir things up and draw attention to himself because of his massive ego. I personally wouldn’t trust anything he says.

            I’ve also never heard a peep out of Cave about difficulties working with Sony, and their games released on Sony consoles in the PSX and PS2 era. Hell, PS2 was one of the finest systems ever for 2D shooters and that wasn’t long ago (leading directly into the 360 shooter era, which started when PS3 was on shaky ground worldwide and was expensive to develop for), so I’m skeptical of sob stories about nefarious Sony policies that were out to get certain genres.

            But anyway, the fact remains that 360 was out first and was cheaper for smaller devs to work on, and therefore it gained a foothold in the shooter market with its loyal fans who will support particular systems once they gain traction. That’s the obvious reason why shooters from Cave and others tend to be 360-focused. Sony policies or not, it’s simply logical for small devs in such a niche genre to support the proven platform that can provide predictable sales for new shooters.

          • Forget Mihara, then. This particular set of visual “mandates” would only have started with the PS3. Here is a post from a developer who casually mentions a few. You may want to read his other replies in the thread; they were pretty interesting to me.

            Whether you believe him or Mihara: I’m not denying that the 360 was out first, was cheaper and easier to develop on, or that it has a significant existing fanbase. (Though sales numbers seem to point at that fanbase being in decline, and I’m curious as to what will happen if the 360 market becomes unsustainable.) I’m just saying that Sony’s policies were definitely a factor at the beginning of this gen—and while they seem to be easing up*, they are still a factor now.

            * Unless Alchemist is just in bed with Sony. I’m not sure how Umineko PS3 happened, frankly.

          • malek86

            “I’m not sure how Umineko PS3 happened, frankly.”

            It’s not a PC port, but a full remake. Just like Tears to Tiara and White Album. It seems Sony has no trouble allowing games to be published on PS3, as long as they are not simply ports. That’s gotta make things difficult for small companies who want to make a quick buck by releasing a port. Of course they would go for the 360 instead. Notice how every 360 VN is essentially the PC version with higher resolution and achievements.

    • mikanko

      Yeah, they pretty much said in that big shmup maker interview a few months ago that most people who buy their games in Japan have bought a 360 to play them, and Sony’s development kit costs more. Sony making it more expensive for them to release these niche games is the primary reason you won’t see them on a Sony platform. Though I remember G-Rev did say they’d like to try and do stuff on PS3 in the future.

    • PrinceHeir

      well they did say that they plan to release some games on the PS3 as well. so there is hope :)

      well there’s Mamoru-kun wa Norowarete Shimatta!: Meikai Katsugeki Wide Version by G. Rev that’s coming on the PS3 this March 31, 2011 so get that :P

      i know i will :D

    • malek86

      It seems small japanese developers are the only ones still going for platform exclusivity. It’s probably a matter of costs. Everyone else is switching to multiplatform, but the smaller companies like Cave, Gust, NIS, 5pb still make their games for a platform of choice.

      Until this situation changes, I don’t expect to see any Cave games on PS3, just like I don’t expect to see NIS games on 360.

  • The artwork is sick !

  • Code

    rar, I’d love to get the limited edition but LE’s in Japan would break my bank opo; Hell regular editions break my bank. But seriously so many shmups lately I got a whole lot on my plate! I just hope the regular edition at least gets a decent cover, Daifukkatsu’s plainer-then-plain regular edition cover was disappointing omo;

    • Aoshi00

      DFK’s regular cover was probably worse than Layton 3DS’s lol…

      • Code

        Yeah seriously omo; so much potential wasted. Regular Daifukkatsu’s cover bothers me, so much so I’m making my own cover!

        • Aoshi00

          That’s how they get you, I got the LE for DFK and MvC3 because I just couldn’t stand their regular covers :)

          • Code

            Yeah, I know the feeling I was THIS close to getting LE on Daifukkatsu, but then I was like “maan my money is so tight I shouldn’t be trying to squeeze this opo;” and then I think I played it smart and went with regular edition — but I may be forced to get creative and see about replacing my cover artwork opo;

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