Popular JRPG developer and publisher Atlus has just seen its parent company fall into the brand new hands of Sega Sammy Holdings for 14 Billion yen ($140 million).
Japanese business magazine Nikkei has reported on the story, and SEGA confirmed the news in a press release stating:
“Notice is hereby given that Sega Dream Corporation, which was newly established as a wholly owned subsidiary by Sega Corporation (‘Sega’), a subsidiary of Sega Sammy Holdings Inc. (the ‘Company’), has concluded a business transfer agreement with Index Corporation (‘Index’) for the purpose of revitalization of the business. Under the agreement, Sega will take over the operations conducted by Index, the bankrupt company that applied to the Tokyo District Court for the commencement of civil rehabilitation proceedings effective from June 27, 2013.”
Japan Bloomberg broke the news last month that said SEGA was one of twenty major companies to place bids on the bankrupt Index Corporation with a total of 20 billion yen ($200 million) amongst the bidders.
With the purchase, SEGA now has access to Index’s mobile IP, but even more importantly, it is snagging up all the wonderful Atlus JRPGs it has brought to home consoles and portables in recent years. Persona, Etrian Odyssey, Shin Megami Tensei, Catherine, and a handful of other Japanese niche titles will now fall under the SEGA brand, giving it that JRPG credibility it hasn’t seen since the days of the SEGA Genesis.
I mentioned before and I’ll mention it again, there are a lot worse places that Atlus could have ended up. SEGA knows what makes Atlus so special, and I doubt they will want to mess with the mojo that has put them on top of the JRPG world. The Sammy half of the holdings company will want to use the popular Persona characters to lure customers into its Pachinko parlors across the country.
All good by me, just as long as I keep getting my Persona games and free bonus CDs with each release, I’ll be fine with this deal.