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Microsoft RPG Announcements on PS3/360 Japanese RPGs

Microsoft announced three big new RPG developments today:

  • Star Ocean 4 (Developed by tri-Ace + Square Enix, Published By Square-Enix), is announced for 360 in 2009. Square Enix evade mention of PS3. I suspect this means a timed 360 exclusive, and the devs are contractually not allowed to mention PS3 info, although this isn’t confirmed.
  • The Last Remnant (Developed/Published by Square Enix), a PS3/360 title, is now announced to hit 360 first. The PS3 version is still confirmed. We don’t know how long the timed exclusive window will be.
  • Tales of Vesperia (Developed/Published by Namco), is announced for 360 only. Namco recently listed this as coming for the PS3, and retracted that as a “mistake”. Again, it sounds like a 360 timed exclusive, where they are contractually not allowed to mention the PS3 version

Microsoft also reiterated that Inifinite Undiscovery and Fable 2 are still permanent 360 exclusives, but we’ve known about those for a while.

On the PS3 side, we still know about White Knight Stories + FFXIII which are the giant PS3 exclusive RPGs for 2009. We also have Disgaea 3 and Valkyrie Chronicles coming (already out in Japan). We finally get Eternal Sonata (already out on 360) later this year.

In terms of upcoming long-term exclusives, PS3 probably still has the edge: WKS + FFXIII are generally much bigger titles than Fable and Infinite Undiscovery. And these new Microsoft announcements are all probably timed exclusives, rather than long-term or permanent exclusive arrangements. However, Microsoft is definitely gaining a lot of ground on this front.

Clearly, these Japanese RPGs are valuable strategic points for Microsoft’s bigger-picture objectives, and their business teams are aggressively pursuing deals around these key properties. I suspect Microsoft has more cash than Sony that they are willing to use in this kind of deal making.

Of course, there may be more cards left to be played. E3 is just around the corner and there’s a good chance we will see unheard of 2008 projects unveiled then. We’ve mentioned this before, but so far the PS3 hasn’t had a major exclusive RPG release in the west. Of course, there are non-exclusive titles, like the upcoming Fallout 3, but in general, most PS3 and RPG fans are eager to see this situation improve.