Japanese RPG series Yo-Kai Watch is heading to the West, Ni No Kuni and Professor Layton developer Level-5 has announced.
While it’s quite likely you’ll not have heard of the series, it’s does big business in its native Japan. The first Yo-Kai Watch game sold over half a million units for the 3DS in 2013, while the follow-up Yo-Kai Watch 2 dropped in Japan July of 2014 and quickly shifted over 3m copies, making it Japan’s best-selling game last year. A third game and spin-off are also in the works, .
With the games making so much money for both the developer and publisher Nintendo, it only makes sense that the platform-holder would seek out new a wider audience for the series. You’ll have to wait before getting your hands on it though – Level-5 boss Akihiro Hino has said that the games won’t launch in the UK and North America until some time next year.
“Now that the Yo-Kai Watch series has found success in Japan, Level-5 will aim to follow-up with a similar level of success in the West, where Nintendo will push the game,” Akahiro told the press at its Level-5 Vision 2015 event earlier this week. “Meanwhile, Hasbro will handle the toys outside Japan.”
In other places across the globe such as Europe, South America, Australia, and New Zealand the games will have a staggered release, rolled out territory by territory on a monthly basis.
Yo-Kai Watch’s beloved anime series is also getting an English dub. All this – the game series release outside Japan, the anime series dub, and the Hasbro merchandise – points to Level-5 aiming to take the series’ Western debut seriously.
In the Yo-Kai Watch games, players take the role of a boy or girl who finds a magical watch in the woods. The watch lets players see spirits called Yo-Kai, which can be tamed and then taken into battle against other Yo-Kai.
You can watch a story trailer for Yo-Kai Watch below. Be warned – the video contains very catchy music.