I won’t hold it against you if you haven’t heard of Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs. While publishing studio, World Event Productions’ other notable mech anime series, Voltron, amassed a large following for itself, Saber Rider wasn’t quite as lucky.
So just what is Saber Rider? Produced by Studio Pierrot, it was a space western originally titled “Sei Jushi Bismark.” WEP took that series, scrapped all the original dialogue, re-arranged entire episodes and scenes, and added their own soundtrack and English voiceover work, neither of which were anything like the original.
In today’s world, WEP would probably be taken to task for similar treatment of an anime license. Back in the 1980s however, WEP’s decision resulted in a show that was just as good as the original, if not better in some ways. And in addition to resulting in a fantastic show, their massive localization effort helped pioneer anime licensing in the U.S. It’s also what got me into anime in the first place.
Now, years and years after Saber Rider is well past its days of glory, German developer, Firehazard, are developing a game based on the franchise for the Nintendo 3DS and iPhone. The game will feature a new art style, based off of the original, by Patrick Reinemann, and programming will be spearheaded by Turrican Creator, Manfred Trenz, and his company, Denaris Entertainment Software.
Most importantly, perhaps, the soundtrack from the anime will be retained and remixed. If you ever decide to watch the series, you’ll notice right away how crucial the OST was to the feel of the show.
Saber Rider and the Star Sheriffs is slated for a release sometime in the third quarter of 2011. Here’s some high-res artwork that came with the announcement:
[Found via GoNintendo]