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Old 10-13-2020, 03:49 AM   #1
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Ni no Kuni and Yokai Watch maker Level 5 North America operations all but shuttered

Most of their games don't really fit the taste of people outside of Japan - Yokai watch is the perfect example.

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Quote: Level-5 North American operations all but shuttered

Currently no concrete plans for Level-5 games to launch in the west.

Level-5 International America, the North American headquarters of Ni no Kuni and Yo-kai Watch developer Level-5, has all but shuttered operations, according to a report.

Citing “multiple sources familiar with the matter,” the report claims that both Level-5 International America and spin-out office Level-5 Abby began winding down operations in mid-2019, which included laying off the majority of both offices’ staff. Sources estimate around 10 employees were laid off from both companies.

Sources said employees were “given every indication” that North American operations would be shuttered, with one or two employees remaining for a few more months to carry out essential operations.

Level-5 Abby COO Yukari Hayakawa is also said to have departed the company in early 2020, despite her LinkedIn stating otherwise.

In July 2019, reported that Level-5 International America laid off two employees and moved a third into another role following the closure of a game design department. Level-5 confirmed those layoffs at the time, but said it was “not a large-scale restructuring.”

As for the future of Level-5’s releases in North America, one source suggested that there were currently no concrete plans for any more Level-5 games to be released outside of Japan.

Level-5 announced a western release for Yo-kai Watch 4 back in July 2019, but has not shared any updates beyond the initial announcement. A western release of its upcoming Inazuma Eleven title, Inazuma Eleven: Heroes’ Great Road, was also announced prior to the game’s multiple delays and name change in Japan.

The company’s most recent western release was Snack World: The Dungeon Crawl – Gold for Switch in February 2020, which originally launched in April 2018 in Japan.

Level-5 International America, Level-5 Abby, and Level-5 Japan did not respond when contacted for comment by
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Old 10-14-2020, 12:19 AM   #2
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Join Date: Feb 2003
Location: EU
Posts: 10,026
Ni no kuni did well though.

The Layton games were popular too. Not sure about the new one with the daughter though. I don't think it was a smart move to mess with a winning formula.

But, yeah... Yokai watch didnt work here. I can't even be arsed to do the yokai watch event in FFXIV cause i'm that desinterested in it.
"Only those with narrow minds fail to see that the definition of Impossible is "Lack of imagination and incentive"" - DUNE:BJ
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