Aside from the occasional shooter or visual novel, the Xbox 360 is mostly neglected in Japan. It wasn’t always this way, Microsoft courted Japan by making publishing deals with Japanese developers for the console’s launch. Ninety-Nine Nights from Q Entertainment, Lost Odyssey and Blue Dragon from Mistwalker, Ninja Blade from From Software (an Otogi-like game released before Demon’s Souls made them popular), and Infinite Undiscovery was originally a Microsoft signed game.
Things have changed with Xbox 360 owners in Japan missing out on multiplatform games. Take Injustice: Gods Among Us. Warner Bros. will release publish the DC Universe fighting game in Japan, but only for PlayStation 3 and Wii U. Dungeons & Dragons: Chronicles of Mystara appears to be PS3-only in the region too and it will be released as a retail game in Japan. We mentioned before how Japanese Xbox 360 owners missed out on Metal Gear Rising: Revengance (remember how that was an Xbox 360 press conference highlight?), Silent Hill: Downpour, and Dynasty Warriors 8 also skipped the 360.
On top of that, even digitally distributed Xbox Live Arcade games are skipping Japan. Skullgirls, which might do decently in the region, is PlayStation 3 only and it has Cyberfront as the publisher. Here’s a list of Xbox Live Arcade titles from this year that Japan didn’t get:
Retro City Rampage
Dungeons & Dragons Daggerdale
Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D’s Decade Duels Plus
Serious Sam Double D XXL
Serious Sam 3: BFE
Giana Sisters: Twisted Dreams
Terraria – Xbox 360 Edition
Poker Night 2
Hunter’s Trophy 2 – America
Monaco: What’s Yours is Mine
BattleBlock Theater was released in Japan and that makes sense since the Behemoth has a decent presence in the region since they attend Tokyo Game Show. Sacred Citadel and oddly enough Way of the Dogg found their way to Japan even though Terraria, which was picked up by Spike Chunsoft, didn’t.
Japan has a few Xbox Live Arcade exclusives like Virtual On and Virtua Striker from Sega, but support for Japan is scarce. The question is can Microsoft ramp that up developers to sell their games in Japan for the Xbox One?