May 16, 2017 02:20 AM EDT
When the “Yo-Kai Watch” game was introduced in Japan in 2013, it was not an instant hit since only more than 53,000 units were sold. However, the airing of the anime in January 2014 boosted sales drastically. But now, the game is in a slump, and the anime is once more coming to the rescue.
On Monday, in the June issue of Coro Coco Comics magazine of Shogakukan, it was announced that the “Yo-Kai Watch” anime would enter the “Busters” arc in July, featuring characters T-Jibanyan and T-Komasan. The two characters were featured in the “Yo-Kai Watch Busters” game, Anime News Network reports.
The two were in the “Ateneko-dan” and “Shroinu-tai” versions of “Yo-Kai Watch Busters” game shipped in Japan in July 2015 for the Nintendo 3DS. A spinoff game, the “Yo-Kai Watch 3: Sukiyaki,” shipped in July with a “Busters Treasure” mode with the two characters. In the spinoff game, up to four players join to fight Yo-Kai, the boss.
The use of the Buster arc in the anime apparently tries to stem the loss of interest among Japanese anime fans and gamers in the “Yo-Kai Watch” craze. Destructoid reports that Bandai Namco Holdings, the company that sells products based on the game, in its 2016 financial report, earned only 10.4 billion yen, or $91.63 million. It is only one-third of the company’s income in 2015 of 32.9 billion yen, or $288.88 million, and one-fifth when the company was at its peak in 2014 when it reported an income of 55.2 billion yen, or $484.69 million.
In 2014, “Yo-Kai Watch” was all over Japan and its theme song, “Gera Gera Po Song” was virtually the national anthem of Japan, according to Siliconera. Analysts explain the decline of the game and other products to the anime series being oversaturated when a sequel was released a year after the series was launched. They warn that in 2017, Bandai Namco’s profit will continue to drop to 6.3 billion yen, or $91.3 million.
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