Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission for the Japanese Nintendo 3DS fell off the Media Create best-sellers list last week — which would have been its fourth week on the charts — but managed to hang in there on the Famitsu list, which pegged it at 8,924 copies for the week.
The game appears to have made a slight comeback during its fifth week (covering the period of 25 March 2013 to 31 March 2013), popping back up at #19 on the Media Create list with another 9,414 copies sold.
Media Create puts the game at 140,208 total copies sold so far, which also lets us reverse-engineer the math to get 9,097 copies back last week compared to Famitsu‘s 8,924 — definitely in the same ballpark.
The Heroes brand has absolutely zero penetration outside of Japan (with the exception of a few character designs plopped into 2011′s Ultimate Tenkaichi), and while our own Herms says to not lose any sleep over missing out on the game, it sounds like a good bunch of you would still be interested in a localized version. Is this still the case? Hoping any upcoming announcements give you some good news?
When Namco-Bandai brought the Dragon Ball video game license back in-house from Atari in 2009, the American branch of the company heavily promoted the franchise and their upcoming games over the course of the next year. After that, however, the promotions were significantly scaled back. The European branch of the company, on the other hand, has consistently been in the mix with fans to hype up whatever releases are on the way at the time. In fact, the vast majority of promotional videos for Ultimate Tenkaichi — highlighting game features like character creation — were done in-house by the European branch exclusively.
It is perhaps no surprise that the European branch is the one teasing what is likely a new video game announcement (link available only to European Facebook visitors):
So far, there is no real information on what the big console game for the franchise — if any — will be this year. Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission on the Nintendo 3DS remains exclusive to Japan (despite comparatively-fantastic sales), J-Stars Victory Vs has yet to receive a release date in Japan (never mind an international announcement), and there is still no word on any possible home console port of Zenkai Battle Royale. Tap Battle for Android-based (and eventually iOS) devices also has no international announcement just yet.
That all being said, Namco-Bandai’s big games preview day is coming up soon this month, and it would be the prime place for an announcement of this type! Last year’s “Global Gamers Day” brought us the formal reveal of Dragon Ball Z for Kinect. Hopefully we get a pleasant surprise this year.
Thanks to John-Edvard for the heads-up and screen grab!
Though it is due out this week on 04 April 2013, very little information has been released about Shueisha’s Dragon Ball SD Volume 1, the first compilation of spin-off author & artist Naho Ooishi’s on-going comic in Saikyō Jump.
Shueisha’s own website has finally dripped out a few details, including a proper version of the book’s cover art:
7つ集めて呪文を唱えると、どんな願いも一つだけ叶えてくれるドラゴンボール。ある日、山奥に住む少年・孫悟空はブルマと出会い、球探しを手伝う事に！？ あの冒険物語がSDで登場！！ 原作ファンも楽しめる！！
When you collect the seven Dragon Balls and recite the incantation, any single wish will be granted. One day, Son Goku, a young boy living deep in the mountains, encounters Bulma, and ends up helping her search for the balls!? That tale of adventure appears in SD!! Even fans of the original can enjoy it!!
The volume will run ¥600 and contain 192 pages. No listings online appear to detail exactly which chapters will be included, and in particular if it will start with the four quarterly chapters that skip over the course of the series, or pick up with the monthly chapters that start at the “beginning” of the series. Furthermore, we do not even know if it will be collected in color like its original printings!
UPDATE: We can confirm that Volume 1 of Dragon Ball SD is indeed printed in full color, features nine chapters starting with the reboot from the January 2012 issue of Saikyō Jump, and a few new bonuses such as a new illustration and message of congratulations to Naho Ooishi from original manga author Akira Toriyama.
Dragon Ball SD began with Saikyō Jump as a quarterly publication with four total issues in 2011 re-telling major aspects of the franchise in an even more childish tone. When the magazine switched to a monthly format in 2012, Dragon Ball SD started over at the very beginning of the series with the same kind of writing and artistic style. Last month’s issue of Saikyō Jump took a short break from the traditional storyline to feature a one-off “Special Manga Version” of the new film Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods.
As anticipated and confirmed via leaked pages last week, today’s issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump (WJ 2013 #18) in Japan confirms Project Versus J has been retitled as J-Stars Victory Vs, Naruto Uzumaki from the (obviously-enough) Naruto series has been added, and more series/characters will be unveiled soon. The 3D-field “team battle action” game is being released on the PlayStation 3 and Vita tied-in with the 45th anniversary of Jump, but no exact release date has been set.
In line with the magazine’s publication today, the game’s official website has also been updated showcasing Naruto’s addition:
While a “movie” is listed as “coming soon” on the website, Famitsu reports that a large number of characters will be revealed in both Weekly Shōnen Jump and V-Jump, and that the first video footage will be aired during the upcoming “Dream 9 Super Collaboration Special” set for 07 April 2013 at 9:00 am on Fuji TV. The special will feature Toriko, One Piece, and Dragon Ball Z crossing over with each other in two parts: “Run, Strongest Team! Toriko, Luffy, and Goku!” and “The Mightiest Collaboration in History vs. the Gluttonous Man of the Sea”.
Believe it or not, we are still catching up on various interviews conducted in support of the new film Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods, and we have English translations of another two for you today: one with Masako Nozawa from Animate.tv, and another with Nozawa, the band FLOW, and scriptwriter Yūsuke Watanabe from the April 2013 issue of DVD & Blu-ray Vision magazine.
In her interview with Animate.tv, Nozawa speaks to getting the whole gang back together to record the first new theatrical film in 17 years, adding new aspects to the expected Dragon Ball story, and bringing multiple generations of fans together to enjoy the movie.
The multi-part interview in DVD & Blu-ray Vision magazine speaks to FLOW’s involvement with the theme songs and being such long-time fans, Nozawa’s process for voicing multiple characters, and Watanabe’s own thoughts on the characters and approaching them as a fan, himself. Perhaps most interesting are a few hints given toward Watanabe’s original ideas for the script, such as a wedding between two certain characters instead of what turned into Bulma’s birthday party in the final draft:
I thought I’d do a story where the enemy appears at a party on Earth when Goku’s not there, and there’d be big trouble; in the original plot, I wrote Kuririn and No. 18′s wedding, but in the story that came back from Toriyama-sensei, it had changed to Bulma’s birthday party. I think, with regards to Kuririn and No. 18′s wedding, it’s probably something that he wants all the fans to imagine for themselves.
Archives of both interviews can be found in our “Translations” section.
It was back in February that Beerus, God of Destruction, was first teased as an upcoming addition to the multiplayer, online, Japanese-only arcade fighting game Zenkai Battle Royale. Since then, more details about unlocking him via the “Competition for Dragon Balls” have been revealed, along with techniques to use in your battle against the god and his overwhelming speed and power.
At the time, “Super Saiyan God” from the new film Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods was only just barely teased, with a promise of more information coming in the June 2013 issue of V-Jump (due out 21 April 2013).
The shining red “God” form can display immense strength appropriate to its name. For far-away opponents, you can use a “Breaking Through the Limit Kamehameha”, and in melee battles, you can use a “Dragon Smash” delivering blows faster than the eye can see. You can also overwhelm your opponent with “Can you keep up with me?”, where you can move at super-speed. The time that you can remain in Super Saiyan God form is limited, but if you use the power of “everyone’s prayers”, you can enter God form one more time. On top of that, if your “excitement/tension” gets to its MAX, you can use “everyone’s prayers” again.
In normal mode, your defensive strength falls, but if you use “Heavy Smash”, with its great countering ability, and “Kamehameha”, which is easy to use anywhere, you can get your excitement to MAX, use “everyone’s prayers” to get into God form again, and display its power once more.
Cinema Today reports that the new film Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods has passed an attendance figure of 500,000 viewers and over ¥680 million in its opening weekend (the two days of March 30th & 31st).
While Variety had previously reported $7 million, this updated figure of ¥683,925,000 puts it at roughly $7.26 million based on the 561,098 people attending the viewings across Japan. This equates to 49.9% of the numbers One Piece Film: Z did over the same period this past December. Cinema Today expects that the movie will reach a final gross of ¥3 billion — it does not say “pass” that point as other sources have, but it does not imply that it will not exceed that amount either.
Ticket prices are comparable to One Piece Film: Z, which makes the money side of things fairly easy to compare. The article notes, however, that this is comparatively expensive for a family-oriented film. On top of being popular with children, even though it has been over 15 years since the serialization ended, it can be inferred that there is a strong base of support among older fans from back then, a demographic Toei Animation was specifically shooting for in addition to the younger audience that has become familiar with the franchise through older siblings, parents, and video games.
The new series of Q&As with original manga author Akira Toriyama — “Please Tell Us, Akira Toriyama-sensei!!” — continues for at least another week in today’s issue of Weekly Shōnen Jump (2013 #18) in Japan. Last week gave us two Q&As, but we are back to just one this week, though it involves a somewhat fun concept for Dragon Ball: romance!
There are some romantic developments, which is rare…?
The truth is, I wrote juuust a little bit of romantic developments in the movie, but that was happenstance. (laughs) I’m really bad with romantic plots. Even if the backstory is there, I shy away when I actually try to draw it.
Based on its first-day attendance alone, the new film Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods is on track — “expected” (Oricon) and “seen as certain” (Nikkan Sports) — to beat the ¥3 billion box office goal originally planned and expected over its six-week-long theatrical run.
According to Oricon, its box office take by 1:00 p.m. on 30 March was already 47.3% of One Piece Film Z‘s first-day gross this past December; that film reached a gross of ¥6.85 billion over its entire run. If it maintains this pace, it should surpass its target by a substantial margin.
Oricon notes how Toriyama’s involvement with the work generated a lot of buzz, and fans who had been waiting for the film’s opening came to theaters in droves. The audience seems to be centered around parents bringing their children, with adults ranging from their late 20s to their 50s.
There was a first-day event at the Marunouchi Toei theater in Tokyo, with Masako Nozawa (Son Goku, et al.), Kōichi Yamadera (Birus), Masaharu Satō (Kame-Sen’nin), Ryō Horikawa (Vegeta), Toshio Furukawa (Piccolo), and special guest Shōko Nakagawa (Oracle Fish), celebrating the launch of the new film. Each was asked about what they would wish for if they collected all 7 Dragon Balls; Nozawa answered, “that as long as there is an earth, Goku will never die”. Nakagawa also expressed her pleasure at standing between Goku and Vegeta, considering it the “most sacred place in the universe”. She also requested that Vegeta get angry at her, so Horikawa responded with a “KORA!” to which she said that something that has been just a fantasy of hers all her life has come true.
It may have shifted to a brand new day over in Japan, but for the rest of us slumming it up without the movie, it is still technically Dragon Ball Z: Battle of Gods day…! We have been bringing you news, photos, and more since its debut this past morning, and we are not done just quite yet: it’s podcast time!
Episode #0328! Julian makes the entire English-speaking world jealous with his tales of checking out the new film “Battle of Gods” on its opening day in Japan. Does the movie hold up its end of the bargain with a proper mix of nostalgia all wrapped up in comedy and action? A recap of news leading up to the movie, information that helps set the stage, and more brings it all home with VegettoEX and Hujio!
- “Dragon Ball Tap Battle” Official Website Opens
- Weekly Jump 2013 #16 Dragon Ball Tidbits
- “Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission” Third-Week Sales
- Official “Battle of Gods” Movie Guide, And More Magazines!
- “Battle of Gods” Aims For 3 Billion Yen at the Box Office
- “DB Heroes: Victory Mission” Chapter 7 in May V-Jump
- Miscellaneous “Battle of Gods” Tidbits in May 2013 V-Jump
- Apple’s iTunes Store Updated in Promotion of “Battle of Gods”
- New “Battle of Gods” TV Spot Features Freeza and Cell Cameos
- Ryō Horikawa Announced As Guest For Anime North in Canada
- “Project Versus J” Update Coming Soon?
- 4th & 5th “Please Tell Us, Akira Toriyama-sensei!!” Q&As
- “Dragon Ball Tap Battle” Now Available For Android Devices
- Scriptwriter Yūsuke Watanabe Confirms “Battle of Gods” Puns
- “Dragon Ball Heroes: Ultimate Mission” Fourth-Week Sales
- “Project Versus J” Unveiled As “J-Stars Victory Vs” (PS3/Vita)
- Akira Toriyama Confirms “Battle of Gods” Name Puns, Again
- Detailed “Battle of Gods” Synopsis Now Available!
- Photos From the Opening of “Battle of Gods”
Enjoy! Discuss this episode over on the Kanzenshuu forum.