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More Mana and Saga games coming to mobile

Weekly digest from Tokyo

More Mana and Saga games coming to mobile

As well as being one of the largest mobile game markets by revenue, Japan is currently also one of the most dynamic.

It's a good opportunity, then, for PocketGamer.biz to hook up with Indie Navi, a site which is dedicated to the coverage of Japanese mobile and indie development.

Set up by two enthusiastic and experienced translators, you can find out more about the services they offer here or email info (at] indienavi.com.

Otherwise, let's get on with the show - the five most interesting stories from the Japanese mobile games industry. 


Click here to view the list »
  • 5

    DeNA teams up with Waseda Uni for start-up course

    DeNA and Waseda University announced on 10 April that they'll be teaming up to provide a series of lectures and events for future venture entrepreneurs.

    The course will be available to students affiliated with any of the university's colleges, with the aim of providing necessary skills to start a business. Guest speakers will include the founder of DeNA, Waseda graduates who have gone on to success as entrepreneurs, and researchers from Waseda's own venture entrepreneurship research department.

    In Japan, where the traditional path has been to succeed in school to join a large (stable) mega-corp, it's interesting to see initiatives to encourage venture entrepreneurship. Given the recent, meteoric rise of mobile content developers in Japan, it's fitting a company like DeNA would be involved.


  • 4

    Sentinel Co., Ltd. makes MGS's iDROID a reality (of sorts)

    One of Metal Gear Solid 5: Ground Zeroes'  unique features in an iOS/Android app that allows the devices to take on the capabilities of the GZ's "iDROID" handheld device.

    Fans not content to have their phones merely mimic the device will be pleased to hear that goods maker Sentinel Co., Ltd. will release a case to make their iPhones look just like it.

    On his Twitter account, Hideo Kojima shows pics of the case, which lights up at the slide of a switch to look just like the iDROID. Unfortunately, Kojima confirms the case will not give iPhones the capability to project holograms.


  • 3

    Beeworks releases NEO Mushroom Garden  globally

    Showing the forward thinking of a company that rose to popularity through a genuinely free-to-play mushroom-raising franchise, on 11 April Beeworks released NEO Mushroom Garden  in both English and Japanese [Google Play link].

    The first Mushroom Garden  title in two years, NEO ups the ante with two logs on which to grow the fabulous fungi, along with updates such as full HD, themes, a food dispensing apparatus, and prizes and upgrades as rewards for huge harvests.

    Themes subtly tweak the cultivation environment, for example making the cultivation period shorter but also promoting the dreaded spread of mildew. The food dispenser allows players to cook up their own miracle growth concoctions, increasing the odds of appearances of rare mushrooms.


  • 2

    Square Enix working on new mobile Saga and Mana titles

    Since joining Square Enix, Takehiro Ando has participated in the development of a multitude of games including the mobile hits Song Summoner  and Kaku-San-Sei Million Arthur.

    Now working as the producer of one of Square Enix's largest mobile development departments, Ando was recently interviewed by Famitsu App. In addition to discussing the development of recent titles, Ando also revealed that his mobile division has been asked to participate in the development of upcoming Saga  and Seiken Densetsu (Secret of Mana)  titles.

    Ando dropped the news that Square Enix is working toward releasing a new Saga  title by the end of the year, as well as another new Mana title by 2015, in time for the series' 25th anniversary.


  • 1

    Silicon Studio shows off Saga of Ishtaria

    Bravely Default developer Silicon Studio is showing Saga of Ishtaria, reminding everyone that it makes its own games, too.

    In the iOS/Android title, players assemble a deck of five characters to send into battle. When the battle starts, players choose the characters' attack order and individual attack types, looking to chain attacks together for damaging combos.

    Beyond the standard mission mode, there will also be a PvP mode allowing players to assemble 15-character teams divided into three 5-character units. In both modes, affinities among the 5-character units will unlock powerful attacks on other battle skills.


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