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Imageepoch Press Conference Live Blog

The JRPG specialists plan to take the genre to the next stage. Click for live coverage straight from the event.


Imageepoch is promising to take "JRPGs to the 2nd stage" at this year's edition of its annual new product press conference, which kicks off today at 13:50 in central Tokyo. The RPG specialist will be announcing multiple projects spanning consoles to cell phones.

There's something special about this particular press conference, though. Imageepoch has until now only served as a developer to games published by the likes of Capcom, Marvelous Entertainment and Sega. Starting next year, it will become a publisher.

Currently, Imageepoch has confirmed that the event will see announcement of a video game based off anime Black Rock Shooter. This will be joined by the announcement of seven other titles, along with a briefing about the company's upcoming business plans. The event will be attended by Imageepoch CEO Ryoei Mikage, Sony Computer Entertainment president Hiroshi Kawano, Sega domestic consumer business head Akira Nomoto, NHN Japan president Akira Morikawa, and Good Smile Company president Aki Takanori.

You can view the press conference for yourself live at Nico Nico Douga (registration required). Or, read below for a live blog with images provided by Alex "cvxfreak" Aniel, who's in attendance.

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15:16 -- The press conference is over. Check back on the main channel shortly for more detailed coverage.

15:14 -- Wow! Mikage is only 29!

15:12 -- Mikage is giving closing comments now.

15:12 -- This will be an information portal for Imageepoch's titles.

15:11 -- Now Mikage is explaining the jrpg.jp website.

15:11 -- Sega will make formal announcement about the game in a future update..

15:11 -- The game will be released next year.

15:11 -- Here's the sketch:

15:10 -- The game is apparently pretty far along.

15:10 -- He shows a rough sketch.

15:10 -- The song was for a game they're working on with Sega as publisher.

15:10 -- Mikage says Imageepoch is still serving as a developer on games.

15:09 -- The lady asks Mikage what the song was for.

15:09 -- The song ended.

15:07 -- Maybe I misheard, and this is what Mikage was talking about when he said there was more:

15:06 -- Ooh... a strings quartet takes the stage.

15:05 -- There's more!

15:05 -- Wait! I spoke too soon!

15:05 -- All the games:

15:05 -- They're being made right now in parallel with all the other games, though.

15:05 -- We'll get details on these four games next year.

15:04 -- It will be a JRPG conversion of a classic title.

15:04 -- Next, Remus Project.

15:04 -- He didn't say the name of the person.

15:03 -- A collaborative project with a JRPG creator.

15:03 -- Next, Mars Project.

15:03 -- But it will be shorter than the Type Moon project.

15:03 -- He wouldn't share release time frame.

15:03 -- Original simulation RPG project.

15:03 -- Next, Ark Project

15:02 -- He said he expects the game to take 3 years development.

15:02 -- It will be a completely new title, published by Imageepoch.

15:02 -- It won't be a followup to that.

15:02 -- Imageepoch worked on a Fate game for Marvelous.

15:01 -- Type Moon makes the Fate franchise.

15:01 -- First, Type-Moon x Imageepoch Project!

15:01 -- Next, those big four items to the upper right!

15:01 -- We can probably expect titles in Summer or beyond.

15:00 -- Imageepoch will be working with some other company to make Android games.

15:00 -- It's for Imageepoch's plans for Android.

15:00 -- There's one more slot in the chart for online games.

14:58 -- Natsuno and artwork for Puchitto Rock Shooter:

14:57 -- Mikage said they won't be able to share any details. However, we'll probably get details in the not-so-distant future.

14:57 -- In case you haven't figured it out from the name, the character in all the Puchitto Rock Shooter art is the Black Rock Shooter character.

14:55 -- Click here for the info page for Puchitto Rock Shooter:

14:54 -- There will be 10 to 20 titles at first.

14:54 -- You'll be able to play games in the right comment area while you watch movies.

14:54 -- Ahh... the big news is that Nico Nico Douga will have a game platform starting in December.

14:53 -- They announce Puchitto Rock Shooter.

14:52 -- He says they've been working on a secret project together.

14:51 -- Dawango's Takeshi Natsuno takes the stage.

14:51 -- Next up, another online title!

14:50 -- Morikawa (The commenters on Nico Nico were joking that he looks like Yon-sama).

14:50 -- The game will be free to play.

14:50 -- He says the PS3, PC and Smartphone versions will all link up some how.

14:48 -- It will also have social elements.

14:47 -- He says the game will be like a next generation browser game. Close to console level visual.

14:46 -- NHN's Akira Morikawa takes the stage.

14:46 -- Smartphone and PS3 also set for release, but the trailer didn't say when.

14:46 -- PC browser version set for 2011 summer.

14:45 -- It's actually a browser game.

14:45 -- They're showing a trailer.

14:44 -- NHN Japan will be doing the networking part of the game.

14:44 -- Chevalier Saga Tactics will be for PC, PS3 and mobile.

14:43 -- Next up, Online games!

14:42 -- The Sega dood:

14:40 -- Sega will be distributing Imageepoch's titles.

14:39 -- Sega's Akira Nomoto takes the stage.

14:39 -- Kawano didn't have anything to announce.

14:34 -- Sony's big boss:

He says he's happy Imageepoch is bringing two games to PSP.

14:32 -- For the next game, they're calling out Sony president Hiroshi Kawano.

14:27 -- They only showed a tiny bit of gameplay in the trailer. It was mostly a mix of event and animation scenes. The one tiny bit of gameplay looked third person shooterish.

14:26 -- There will be a pricey limited edition with, expectedly, a figure.

14:26 -- UFOTABLE is doing animation.

14:25 -- Looks like a third person shooter!

14:25 -- 12 people remain.

14:25 -- 19 years after the start of the war.

14:25 -- They're showing a first trailer.

14:25 -- Takanori discussed how the Black Rock Shooter franchise has been expanding. The new PSP game is one example of this.

14:23 -- Takanori and Mikage:

14:21 -- Takanori is giving a summary of the Black Rock Shooter franchise.

14:21 -- Following an alien invasion, just 12 people remain on Earth.

14:21 -- Mikage is relaying some of the setting details that leaked out earlier today.

14:20 -- Mikage introduces Good Smile Company's Aki Takanori.

14:19 -- Black Rock Shooter The Game!

14:19 -- Next, JRPG number 2!

14:19 -- Kitamura and Mikage:

14:16 -- Mikage says the game has the concept of "Lost Game." It looks like when a character dies, it will be gone for good, affecting even the story.

14:15 -- Imageepoch's plan:

14:13 -- Eri says the story is really serious.

14:13 -- She's not the heroine, but her voice will be heard quite a bit -- at the same level as the heroine.

14:13 -- Actually, he just said it's a command-based RPG. The Rizetto character will serve as a navigator, helping players out.

14:12 -- Mikage explains the gameplay concepts.

14:10 -- Eri Kitamura takes the stage. She places the Rezetto character.

14:10 -- This will be their first self-published title.

14:09 -- They just showed a sweet trailer.

14:09 -- First game is Story of The Last Promise

14:07 -- Now they're going on to title announcements.

14:07 -- The one where he says the term is viewed negatively overseas often.

14:07 -- The meaning he's giving is the same one from the trailer.

14:07 -- Mikage gave a little update about the state of the RPG genre in the market, and now he's defining the term JRPG.

14:05 -- Mikage was apparently told to memorize a 30 page script for the press conference, but he wasn't able to so he asked for people to bare with him while he reads.

14:04 -- He said he's a bit nervous.

14:04 -- He could be going to a wedding.

14:04 -- Wow... he's totally dressed up!

14:03 -- CEO Mikage takes the stage.

14:03 -- The recap video of Imageepoch's past titles has ended.

14:03 -- Famitsu did not list a price for the PS3 version of the game.

14:03 -- Anyhow... the PC version of Chevalier will run on Han Game, which is presumably why NHN is there.

14:02 -- They're showing a trailer now recapping Imageepoch's past games.

14:01 -- They just showed the teaser promotional video that was shown last week.

14:01 -- The press conference has started!

14:01 -- Strange... we should get clarification shortly!

14:01 -- Actually... the info page lists Chevalier as a PC game, while Famitsu listed it as a PS3 game.

14:00 -- The info page says it's free to play!

14:00 -- Chevalier is due for release in Summer 2011.

13:59 -- Here's one for Chevalier Saga Tactics.

13:59 -- Imageepoch has also opened an information page for Black Rock Shooter.

13:58 -- The official website for Last Promise has already opened: http://fps.jrpg.jp/.

13:54 -- If you'd like to read live updates in Japanese, visit 4gamer's Twitter. They're really fast.

13:53 -- You'll have to register first, but it's free.

13:52 -- In case you're not viewing the live stream, go here.

13:52 -- This Nico Nico live stream thing is neat. You can hear people speaking in the background.

13:34 -- We'll have updates close to the 14:00 start time, so be sure and come back then!

13:33 -- Click here for details on Black Rock Shooter and Story of the Last Promise, both for PSP.

13:33 -- Click here for details on Imageepoch's first PS3 title, Chevalier Saga Tactics.

13:31 -- The press conference won't start until 14:00, but as usual many of the announcements have leaked out via magazines.

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