Namco-Bandai Confirms North American Distribution
Published by 03 July 2009, 8:10 PM EDT

Though we have known for a while that Namco-Bandai would be releasing its own new Dragon Ball-based games in North America (completely circumventing Atari) the company has finally issued a formal press release that details this agreement, rather than simply saying they are releasing new games:

LOS ANGELES–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Leading video game publisher and developer NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. today confirmed that it has secured exclusive North American rights to publish future official videogames for the longstanding classic anime and manga series, Dragon Ball®, across all major consoles and hand held platforms.

This agreement will run for five years beginning in January 2010 and supersedes the existing rights granted to publish titles on the Nintendo DS™, Wii™, PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system, PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system, and Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft.

Additionally, NAMCO BANDAI Games America Inc. has secured the right to initially publish three titles in 2009, Dragon Ball®: Raging Blast for the Xbox 360® video game and entertainment system from Microsoft and PLAYSTATION®3 computer entertainment system, Dragon Ball®: Revenge of King Piccolo exclusively for Wii™, and Dragon Ball® Z: Attack of the Saiyans exclusively for Nintendo DS™.

The note of the new agreement beginning in January 2010 makes complete sense, with this being the termination date of Atari’s original sub-license with FUNimation. However, Namco-Bandai swooping in with their own release of the three new games prior to that date makes for an interesting license/legal/arrangement nightmare, but from the sounds of it, everything is sorted out behind the scenes.

This new agreement begins in January 2010 and runs for five years. Coincidentally, as previously noted, FUNimation has also renewed their sub-license on the series for another five years, and while no dates were specified, it does conveniently seem to line up.

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