NIS America announced today that it will no longer handle publishing duties on Atlus titles in Europe. The publisher had previously released Atlus-developed games in the region such as Persona Q and Etrian Odyssey II Untold: The Fafnir Knight.
Apparently, tensions between the two companies have been strained for some time. In a statement to MCV, NIS America MD Takuro Yamashita stated that the company has had difficulty with Atlus since the developer was purchased by Sega.
“Around ten days ago, we terminated our alliance with Atlus in Europe and the US. Atlus became very picky about selecting the European publishing partner after it was bought by Sega. It always cherry picked its EU publishing partner based on who offered the highest minimum guarantee on a title by title basis. I noticed that it was very difficult for NIS America to establish an equal-partnership with Atlus. Atlus and its European games have contributed a lot to the expansion of NIS America in Europe. I would like to express my greatest appreciation to them for that.”
It’s always interesting to get a glimpse of the inner workings of the gaming industry. Profitability comes as a top priority for every publisher, especially as Japanese companies have faced pressure to compete with cell phone gaming. If Yamashita’s comments regarding Sega and Atlus are to be believed, it would seem to fit the trend we’ve seen with companies such as Konami and Capcom, as of late.
Unfortunately, in cases like these, it’s the fans that end up suffering. Hopefully Atlus won’t be looking too long to find a new partner in the region.