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Old 2013-07-19, 18:40   Link #1
Chaos2Frozen
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Atlus: discussion, speculation and whatnot

Report: Atlus parent company to seek buyer

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Index, the bankrupt parent company of Persona and Shin Megami Tensei developer Atlus, plans to start an auction for a buyer as early as next week, according to Bloomberg sources.

The company is currently being investigated by Japan’s Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission on suspicion that it falsified financial reports. The day before the information was made public, Index had a market value of 6.8 billion yen. Its shares have since dropped 84 percent.

Index will seek as much as 15 billion yen in a sale, excluding its 24.5 billion yen in dept, one of Bloomberg’s source said. The company hopes to reach an agreement by September.
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Use this thread to discuss anything Atlus related, stuff that would be off-topic in any of the specific game threads.

Last edited by Daniel E.; 2013-08-10 at 21:16.
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Old 2013-07-19, 18:46   Link #2
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Originally Posted by Chaos2Frozen View Post
Don't know where else to post this though...

Report: Atlus parent company to seek buyer
hopes $ony buys them, so we can get more games on Ps3/ps4/vita.
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Old 2013-07-19, 18:54   Link #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chaos2Frozen View Post
Don't know where else to post this though...

Report: Atlus parent company to seek buyer
So they're official bankrupt it seems...it's to be expected but didn't expect news of it happening to be this quick.

Keeping my fingers crosses that MS doesn't buy them off "shudders in disgust". Hope Sony picks them due to the fact that most of the Persona series platforms have been exclusive for them for so long and to keep the fanbase consistence. Others port would be fine to, but need to see where this goes in the future.
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Old 2013-07-19, 18:59   Link #4
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C'mon Nintendo. It'd do you some good to have a second party like Atlus under your belt.~

Persona 5 = Wii U exclusive. You can just see the consoles flying off the shelves at that announcement.~
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Old 2013-07-19, 19:47   Link #5
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Honestly speaking, I can't see Sony, Nintendo, or any third party for that matters, picking up Atlus in a buyout. Most Japanese gaming companies seem too troubled financially or don't even have the kind of capital needed to take in an entire subsidiary. And Atlus is also a publishing house as well, which should mean a decent net worth in terms of franchises. My money's on some corporate investment group picking them up.
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Old 2013-07-19, 23:44   Link #6
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All I hope is that Microsoft doesn't get their hands on Atlus. Otherwise I'm not too worried about who exactly makes the move there.
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Old 2013-07-20, 00:19   Link #7
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All I hope is that Microsoft doesn't get their hands on Atlus. Otherwise I'm not too worried about who exactly makes the move there.

What you think in a pokemon battle your opponent would just chill how for however long it takes for you to decide what attacks to use? They don't make any more sense in Pokemon if you are using that logic. Pokeomon could follow an action rpg style and just give commands on the fly.
Persona 5, Nuts and Bolts.
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Old 2013-07-20, 03:52   Link #8
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C'mon Nintendo. It'd do you some good to have a second party like Atlus under your belt.~

Persona 5 = Wii U exclusive. You can just see the consoles flying off the shelves at that announcement.~
Atlus is a terrible fit for Nintendo, and vice versa though. Ideally, anyone acquiring the company will have to leave them mostly be, and I don't know if Nintendo wants to do that right now.

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Originally Posted by com_gwp View Post
Honestly speaking, I can't see Sony, Nintendo, or any third party for that matters, picking up Atlus in a buyout. Most Japanese gaming companies seem too troubled financially or don't even have the kind of capital needed to take in an entire subsidiary.
The most likely buyers should be Sony, Marvelous AQL or GungHo (Puzzle & Dragons). I can see the Atlus doing fairly well with those three.
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Old 2013-07-20, 04:14   Link #9
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Atlus is a terrible fit for Nintendo, and vice versa though. Ideally, anyone acquiring the company will have to leave them mostly be, and I don't know if Nintendo wants to do that right now.
Looking at all the titles Atlus has released on Nintendo consoles with a lot of them being exclusives, I'll have to strongly disagree with that first part.

And being second party developer isn't much different from being third-party. The only major differences being they can only develop exclusively for the contracting company's hardware and they can receive access to IP licenses and financial support from the first party without any direct interference.
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Old 2013-07-20, 06:53   Link #10
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Atlus is a terrible fit for Nintendo, and vice versa though. Ideally, anyone acquiring the company will have to leave them mostly be, and I don't know if Nintendo wants to do that right now.
Devil Survivor has been on Nintendo handhelds only as well as Shin Megami Tensei Strange Journey and IV.

I don't think Nintendo has any problem with leaving Atlus alone.
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Old 2013-07-20, 06:56   Link #11
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I think what 4tran means is that they would want Atlus to pump out as many Nintendo exclusives to boost Wii U sales.
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:00   Link #12
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Originally Posted by Chaos2Frozen View Post
I think what 4tran means is that they would want Atlus to pump out as many Nintendo exclusives to boost Wii U sales.
Just Nintendo exclusives, or Wii U exclusives? There is a difference.

Again, virtually every modern Megami Tensei game not Persona has been Nintendo exclusive lately, including the main Shin Megami Tensei games.
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:25   Link #13
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Looking at all the titles Atlus has released on Nintendo consoles with a lot of them being exclusives, I'll have to strongly disagree with that first part.
The platform of choice has nothing to do with things like corporate fit and the financial goals of a company. Nintendo needs to make as much money as possible for the short term and any extraneous acquisitions will run counter to that. Moreover, even if Atlus were to make a bunch of Wii U games, they probably won't come out until 2015 so it won't even help the Wii U's fortunes.

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And being second party developer isn't much different from being third-party. The only major differences being they can only develop exclusively for the contracting company's hardware and they can receive access to IP licenses and financial support from the first party without any direct interference.
You seem to be mistaken about what second-party means. I don't know if it's a formal term, but it only applies to games, not developers. A second-party game is one that is made by a third-party developer but published by a console manufacturer. If Nintendo were to buy Atlus, then Atlus becomes a first-party developer like Monolithsoft or Retro. Atlus is not in any position to work with Nintendo the way Platinum does.

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Devil Survivor has been on Nintendo handhelds only as well as Shin Megami Tensei Strange Journey and IV.

I don't think Nintendo has any problem with leaving Atlus alone.
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Originally Posted by Chaos2Frozen View Post
I think what 4tran means is that they would want Atlus to pump out as many Nintendo exclusives to boost Wii U sales.
It's more the sense that Nintendo has never shown much interest in exploring the kind of games that Atlus makes. Would they all of a sudden do so after an acquisition?
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:29   Link #14
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It's more the sense that Nintendo has never shown much interest in exploring the kind of games that Atlus makes. Would they all of a sudden do so after an acquisition?
I'm not really quite sure where you're going with this. Didn't you say "Ideally, anyone acquiring the company will have to leave them mostly be"?

If anything it sounds like Nintendo could do just that.
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:46   Link #15
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I'm not really quite sure where you're going with this. Didn't you say "Ideally, anyone acquiring the company will have to leave them mostly be"?

If anything it sounds like Nintendo could do just that.
If the two companies are interested in different kinds of games, would Nintendo still want to let Atlus make whatever the latter wanted to make? Would they be okay with experimentation? What if games run late and over-budget? Can they provide technical assistance?

I just don't see these companies fitting each other very well. The only way I see Nintendo doing much to secure Atlus is if they're afraid that Atlus will no longer make titles for the 3DS. Nintendo is much better served by allocating their resources developing their internal design teams and maybe finally getting to the point where they can make games for the Wii U in a timely manner.
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:55   Link #16
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If the two companies are interested in different kinds of games, would Nintendo still want to let Atlus make whatever the latter wanted to make? Would they be okay with experimentation? What if games run late and over-budget? Can they provide technical assistance?
I'm not sure if they are interested in "different kinds of games". I thought the main Shin Megami Tensei games would be too dark and beginner-unfriendly for Nintendo, but here it is in all it's glory. It's also being advertised with commercials and other promotions. There are also different series within the franchise, so there are plenty of other options to fit within Nintendo's "target" demographic and experiment with them at the same time.

Nintendo also has Intelligent Systems and planned a SMT x Fire Emblem crossover, so I think they're perfectly fine with Atlus' RPGs.

Atlus games are also not HD or graphically demanding in any form, so there is less reason for them to run late on developing games.
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Old 2013-07-20, 07:59   Link #17
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I'm not sure why either company would want to acquire Atlus, to be honest.

With the exception of Persona, none of Atlus's franchises are that big of a seller. And even Persona's around 500k - 800k, it's relatively niche, all things considered.

It's definitely appealing to a company like say... Gungho, who's reeling in massive cash from a one-hit wonder, but doesn't have an established 'hardcore' fanbase, but to platform holders like Nintendo and Sony? It's not like they're in thirst for IPs of Atlus's scale, they have many franchises that easily dwarf the sales of what the entirety of what Atlus can offer.

It seems like a more rational choice to just poach away key talent from Altus into their existing studios to build an 'RPG team.'
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Old 2013-07-20, 08:15   Link #18
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I'm not sure why either company would want to acquire Atlus, to be honest.

With the exception of Persona, none of Atlus's franchises are that big of a seller. And even Persona's around 500k - 800k, it's relatively niche, all things considered.

It's definitely appealing to a company like say... Gungho, who's reeling in massive cash from a one-hit wonder, but doesn't have an established 'hardcore' fanbase, but to platform holders like Nintendo and Sony? It's not like they're in thirst for IPs of Atlus's scale, they have many franchises that easily dwarf the sales of what the entirety of what Atlus can offer.

It seems like a more rational choice to just poach away key talent from Altus into their existing studios to build an 'RPG team.'
This is one of the reasons why Atlus would be a bad fit for Nintendo. Atlus doesn't even have very much HD game experience, so even their staff won't address Nintendo's greatest needs.

I see Sony as a less likely candidate than a company like GungHo, but one of their most pressing needs is to bolster their appeal in Japan. While Atlus has only a modest fanbase, it's still a very good fit for that need. Moreover, I get the feeling that Sony wants to get back into making JRPGs, and I've heard murmurings that an announcement may be coming for TGS.

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I'm not sure if they are interested in "different kinds of games". I thought the main Shin Megami Tensei games would be too dark and beginner-unfriendly for Nintendo, but here it is in all it's glory. It's also being advertised with commercials and other promotions. There are also different series within the franchise, so there are plenty of other options to fit within Nintendo's "target" demographic and experiment with them at the same time.

Nintendo also has Intelligent Systems and planned a SMT x Fire Emblem crossover, so I think they're perfectly fine with Atlus' RPGs.

Atlus games are also not HD or graphically demanding in any form, so there is less reason for them to run late on developing games.
About Fire Emblem:

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“No doubt. Truth be told, sales are dropping. The sales manager of Nintendo, Mr. Hatano, told us that this could be the last Fire Emblem. Due to this progressive descend on sales, they told us that if the sales of this episode stayed below 250,000 copies, we’d stop working on the saga. I remember when I came back from the meeting and told the team ‘My God, what are we gonna do?! The end has come!’. Our reaction was clear: if this was going to be the last Fire Emblem, we had to put everything we always wanted to include. That’s how this new project was born!”
Luckily for them, Fire Emblem Awakening was a hit.
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Old 2013-07-20, 09:10   Link #19
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Originally Posted by Shadow5YA View Post
Devil Survivor has been on Nintendo handhelds only as well as Shin Megami Tensei Strange Journey and IV.

I don't think Nintendo has any problem with leaving Atlus alone.
And remember the Trauma Center series? That really benefited the use of the Wiimote and Nunchuck (and yes there are ones on the DS as well).

Hmmm, it makes wonder what kind of setting Persona 5 will take place. It'll be GREAT if it takes place in college; make it have the player choose a major which will affect what social links will be available. And maybe work in a plot about the recession and the worrying future of getting a job; ya know, something similar to [C] without the gratuitous use of financial terms.
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Old 2013-07-20, 10:38   Link #20
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I see Sony as a less likely candidate than a company like GungHo, but one of their most pressing needs is to bolster their appeal in Japan. While Atlus has only a modest fanbase, it's still a very good fit for that need. Moreover, I get the feeling that Sony wants to get back into making JRPGs, and I've heard murmurings that an announcement may be coming for TGS.
The thing about their position in Japan though, is the fact that ultimately, their only real competition in the space now is the 3DS, and it's clear that Sony's focus, even within their Japan-branch is the PS4 more so than the Vita.

X360 is pretty much not relevant in the Japan market anymore. Most console games in Japan are pretty much PS3 exclusives, with their 360 counterparts either not being sold there, or not supported well.

As for the Wii U, well... it looks like it's not going to have any momentum for the next 6 months at least. All the 'system sellers' that Wii U's going to have is not going to be out anytime soon.

Sony's de-facto approach in Japan has still primarily been through their Japan Studio, or co-development with 3rd-party devs ( Demon's Soul, WKC ), and that doesn't seem to change. The only real shift their Japan branch had done was the change of leadership with Allan Becker taking the helms of Studio Japan, and a possible expansion of Polyphony Digital.

And while it's true that Sony is likely to dive back into making JRPGs, I don't think they're going to do so via a niche approach, like Persona. I think they're more than comfortable letting 3rd-party devs manage the more 'niche' RPGs in the market, like Gust and their Atelier franchise.

I expect any JRPGs they do to have a lot more 'global appeal', so that it can be nurtured into a AAA-franchise. WKC was clearly an attempt at this, which failed due to poor game quality.
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