Bandai Namco To Make Older Properties Available To Developers [Update]

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Bandai Namco are opening the rights for 17 of their classic videogame franchises up to Japanese developers, according to a report at Japanese publication Nikkei. (Thanks, Anime News Network)

 

By opening up these properties, Namco hopes to revive interest in them. As part of making them available for developers to use, the company will allow the use of characters, music, stories, and games from these franchises, as well as the modification of these assets.

 

The following properties will be available to developers for use:

 

  • Pac-Man
  • Xevious
  • Galaxian
  • The Tower of Druaga
  • Tower of Babel
  • Dragon Buster
  • Wonder Momo
  • Galaga
  • Battle City
  • Valkyrie no Bōken (The Adventure of Valkyrie)
  • Yōkai Dōchūki (Shadow Land)
  • Wagan Land
  • Dig Dug
  • Star Luster
  • Sky Kid
  • Genpei Tōma Den

 

In order to use these franchises, developers will need to apply for permission from Bandai Namco. That said, Namco plan on approving most applications on principle, unless they contain offensive content of some sort. The company will begin taking applications in April, and will receive a “small percentage” of sales from their development partners for paid games. Meanwhile, there are also plans for an advertising scheme for developers making free games, whereby Namco will receive a portion of the ad revenue.

 
Update: Bandai Namco contacted us to clarify a couple of details about the program. At the moment, this will only be available to developers in Japan. All uses of the legacy IP will have to go through an approval process with Bandai Namco. This approval process and supervision placed on a project will be more streamlined for Japanese developers interested in creating mobile and browser games with the selected classic IP. Also, games developed with this program will only be available in Japan.

Ishaan Sahdev
Ishaan specializes in game design/sales analysis. He's the former managing editor of Siliconera and wrote the book "The Legend of Zelda - A Complete Development History". He also used to moonlight as a professional manga editor. These days, his day job has nothing to do with games, but the two inform each other nonetheless.