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Atlus Will Live Stream Details About the Shin Megami Tensei HD Switch Game Next Week

It will be made in Unreal Engine 4 for the Nintendo Switch.

News by Matt Kim, .

Back when the Switch was first announced Atlus teased an HD Shin Megami Tensei game for the then-unreleased console. Aside from a brief teaser, the project remained largely quiet. Now, Atlus' Japanese Twitter account revealed that more information for the game will be live streamed on October 23.

A Tweet announcing the live stream went up today across social media. Atlus' official website and YouTube channel have been updated with an embed for the stream, which will air October 23, 2017 at 9 PM JST (5 AM PT/8 AM ET).

Aside from a confirmation that the game is being developed in Unreal Engine 4, not a lot is known about the Shin Megami Tensei title for the Switch. The game is meant to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the Shin Megami Tensei series. So if you're a fan of Atlus' non-Persona RPG series be sure to tune in.

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Comments 12

  • Avatar for LunarFlame17 #1 LunarFlame17 A year ago
    I really hope this is Shin Megami Tensei V. Not that it really matters what it’s called; I’m going to buy it no matter what. It would just be extra exciting.
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  • Avatar for RandyAtkins #2 RandyAtkins A year ago
    I'm interested!
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  • Avatar for Jonnyboy407 #3 Jonnyboy407 A year ago
    Whaaaaaaa?!? Hype!
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  • Avatar for Vodka-Tonic #4 Vodka-Tonic A year ago
    Switch is pretty much my favorite system, now. Keep the indies and JRPGs coming!
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  • Avatar for discohospital #5 discohospital A year ago
    I'll reiterate that I don't think this will be a Switch exclusive. The teaser above makes no mention of platform, and since day one the official 25th anniversary website has advertised it as an "HD Project", opposite a space for the then-unannounced Strange Journey remake, which was specifically labelled "3DS Project". I think we'll be hearing about other platforms during this upcoming event - likely PS4; maybe even... PC (though the latter might be a longshot).

    And yes, this has to be Shin Megami Tensei V. Take a look at the 25th anniversary logo, and note the "NEXT" in the space between the top two points on the inverted star.
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  • Avatar for SatelliteOfLove #6 SatelliteOfLove A year ago
    No YHWH-damned beach scenes or friendship is magic horseshit!

    I pay for blood, nihilism, yawning solitude, and dark humor!
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  • Avatar for Ralek #7 Ralek A year ago
    @discohospital Maybe, but isn't the more important point, that it is actually coming to the Switch? I think jRPGs a great fit for portable systems, esp. all the ones that turn-based and like ... really, really loooonnngggg (aka the vast majority of them ^^).

    I'd definitely prefer SMTV on the Switch over the same game on PC or PS4. I mean, looking at Atlus track-record "HD" does not really mean that much. It's not going be a game anyone is going to play for it's visuals, Unreal engine or not. If anything, it'll be played for it's visual style and design, like Persona 5, but not the graphics as such.

    It's also worth noting, that Atlus only rarely bothers with porting and multi-platform releases as far as SMT and it's spin-offs go, and possibly more importantly, for the longest time now, basically since the PS2 era and P4, the games have been very much portable centric. I think the reason for this is that these are very much niche games, that are still mainly focused on the Japanese market (Atlus lacking a EU publishing branch for the longest time), and that market shifted to portable device during the HD era.

    Anyways, all of this is just conjecture, but again, what matters is that it'll be coming to the Switch, and I'm positive that this will be a great match.

    Also, I really hope this is "V" - if not in name, then at least in spirit. I am not generally opposed to spin-offs of any variation, with DDS and Persona being amazing series on their own, but it's so long since I've played a mainline SMT game on anything but a tiny 3DS screen, that this really feels like a game changer. Fingers crossed then :-)
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  • Avatar for discohospital #8 discohospital A year ago
    @Ralek I don't think the possibility of it coming to other platforms dilutes its presence on the Switch at all. I personally don't own a Switch yet, and may not be able to get one for some time. I'm sure others are in the same boat. I don't mean to suggest at all that it coming to the Switch is a bad thing, I'm only pointing to a few facts that may suggest the possibility of a multiplatform release, which as far as I'm concerned would be a good thing for everyone involved (Atlus and consumers alike).

    We're coming into a new era with Japanese games - more and more companies are looking to the west as not merely a secondary market. Recently, Atlus, both with the success of Persona 5 and the announcement of their Re:Fantasy project, made a point of highlighting their desire to reach out to western markets. I'd also point to what Falcom's president said (in the fairly recent interview on this site) with regard to focusing on the PS4 with both the Japanese and western markets in mind, while seeming reluctant to commit to the prospect of developing for the Switch. The PS4 is simply a less risky platform right now, all things considered, no matter what side of the world you're looking at.

    As for the handhelds question, I don't think that kind of logic from the standpoint of certain (very dedicated) players' tastes and preferences is really the deciding factor here. In the past, it was in fact the popularity of handhelds, specifically in Japan - but things are changing. If I were Atlus, at this point I'd want as much exposure as possible for a franchise that has fallen off considerably in terms of recognition and popularity in recent years. I'd say we're most likely looking at more of a Nocturne type title here than an SMTIV one, and I'd hope that they wouldn't be content to let the series languish in its newfound niche apart from the company's more ambitious titles. I'd say it's an opportunity to get the series back on its feet, and at this point in time I'd say that kind of ambition would need more than one platform. With the dominance of mobile in Japan currently, the focus on handhelds is very quickly disintegrating, and developers are having to look to become more dynamic and flexible.

    As for HD, in this case it's more of a neutral term meant to distinguish the title from, say, 3DS or mobile, and I'd say to suggest the possibility of multiple platforms. I don't think many consumers would expect any kind of drastic graphical difference in a PS4 or PC version - but there are many, many people around the world who only own, or perhaps prefer, one or both of those.

    Atlus' transition to HD (as with many other Japanese companies) has been a rough and perhaps cautious one - but I'd say in their case it's partly to do with timing and resources, and partly because they simply haven't wanted to put out subpar products, knowing that any HD title they put out is going to be seen as a kind of flagship. But now that they're aboard that train (and, importantly, now that they have Persona 5 out), and with porting for seemingly any new HD development project being an easier prospect than it was with past platforms (especially those with two screens!), I think the smartest move would be the one-size-fits-all approach that some other developers of similar size and position in the market have been taking.

    I think the reason for the focus on particular platforms over the past decade or so has had to do with circumstances of the market/industry; the specificity of those platforms, or in some cases the dominance / install base of certain platforms, and perhaps the less straightforward prospect of porting between them. The PSP and DS were both massively popular (not to even mention the PS2), and in those days still had a considerable edge over mobile (phone) gaming. The 3DS has remained steadfast against the tide of mobile, enough (presumably) to hold on to enough of the type of gamer that seeks Atlus' output. I'd say P4G probably went to the Vita in part because at the time no one knew it wasn't going to do as well (as I recall, they had considered doing it for PSP, but then switched once the Vita came into play). P4D followed because... well, P4G fans already had the system. And now we've got P3D and P5D coming to... Vita and PS4. Things being as they are now with the console side of the industry seemingly on the decline, and the technological divide between platforms not being what it was, companies are moving to multi-platform releases as a matter of course.

    One thing I forgot to add in my previous post: the last Atlus-published game that was promoted with the very same term, "HD Project", was Odin Sphere: Leifthrasir. That went to three platforms (all Sony, granted).

    I don't see them going to just one platform with Re:Fantasy either. I think we're seeing the beginnings of a new approach with Atlus. Edited October 2017 by discohospital
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  • Avatar for Ralek #9 Ralek A year ago
    @discohospital Well, based on the reveal earlier today, it seems that for the time being, it'll be a Switch game.

    You make some good points, but ultimately, I don't think all of them a valid. For example, I strongly disagree that the Switch is more risky than the PS4. It's a common mistake to assume that larger installbase equals more total sales at the end of the day. This obviously makes sense, and it definitely can turn out to be true, but it's not a self evident law, other factors play a role as well:

    For example, the attach rate matters more than just the sheer number of customers.
    Equally important: What customers are we talking about? Or to put it differently, if Persona 5 runs okay on the Ps3, bringing it to the X1 should have been a no problem, one would assume, even for a small dev like Atlus. The pertintent question though is, how big a market is there in terms of Xbox owners interest in Persona 5, who don't also own a Ps3 or Ps4. Apparently, Atlus decided that this was a rather insignificant group.
    Also highly important is the matter of what else is available. There is currently an almost literal gold rush going on in the e-shop with certain indie games posting their strongest overall sales on the Switch, despite being multiplatform releases, incl. much more populated systems like the PS4. There is simply right now that not much competition for attention on the Swtich, hence every single title has a good chance of finding an audience ... even titles that would be otherwise drowned out in MASSIVE catalogues like the PSN, Xbox Live and Steam.
    This is twice as important, if you are a company with a limited marketing budget. it's less an issue for Activision than it is for Atlus in short.

    And yeah, the fact remains SMT is a niche game, with niche appeal, esp. outside of Japan. There is a lot of pressure on the Japanese market, esp. in terms of traditional home-console market, and hence it makes sense for developers to reach out to the vast western audiences to sustain their sales numbers, but also certainly to find any hope of growth. Alas, I think that is also a bit of a pipe dream. Western audiences are conditioned differently, have been for decades. Atlus could wish to turn Persona into the next Witcher or Mass Effect of course (in terms of adding sales in the west to theirs).

    I'm not opposed to SMTV coming to other platforms. I just think it's not as likely as you made it out to be, despite some good reason in favor of it.
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  • Avatar for discohospital #10 discohospital A year ago
    @Ralek I’d argue that attach rate and install base have an interdependent relationship. Incidentally, I recall being a bit puzzled by all of the proclamations to the effect of “Zelda has a 100% attach rate! The Switch is a success!” - before we had any solid numbers on sales. Most games that have any potential whatsoever are going to have a high attach rate on Switch right now, simply because it’s a new system and did in fact have a strong launch, and there’s a thirst for new titles that can’t be fully quenched in such a short period. But if the Switch remains steady it’s going to get a lot more crowded. Gold mines run dry, no?

    With that in mind, when will this game launch? We have no date yet, and it won’t surpise me if it’s 2019 at the earliest. But to be fair, on the other hand, I’d say at that point the Switch may in fact have the kind of install base to support Shin Megami Tensei V as an exclusive, with a good handful of high-profile RPGs coming out by then which have the potential to entice the type of audience Atlus needs.

    I see no equivalency between Xbox One and PS4 (nor indeed between Xbox One and Switch) when it comes to Atlus’ target market. The XB1 utterly failed in Japan, and obviously its market in the west isn’t one that’s going to be particularly receptive to Persona, or Shin Megami Tensei for that matter, and probably not significantly more or less so to either. The fact is that there is a strong audience for Japanese RPGs on the PS4, and this has been proven over and over, particularly during the past year. Crowded or no, games of any profile are finding success there.

    Shin Megami Tensei is certainly a relatively niche prospect, especially in the west, and even in Japan to some extent now. But my argument was (and I probably could have been clearer in this regard) based around the fact that most other Japanese companies of similar size (or smaller) are finding similar success worldwide, particularly with RPGs, and it’s primarily on the PS4 these days, with major inroads being made into the PC market. I did bring up Falcom, and they're a perfect example. Perhaps Atlus has some very different strategy in mind, but I think you’d have to do a lot of bending if you want to claim that the PS4 wouldn’t be fertile ground for any Atlus RPG.

    I don’t think Atlus is aiming for the scale of Witcher or Mass Effect with anything, but being successful in the west by no means needs AAA numbers. Persona 5 was incredibly successful worldwide, with two thirds of its (1.5 million +) sales going west. And I’m not sure how it’s split, but as I recall SMTIV sold something like 750k worldwide (two years after its exclusive platform’s launch). That’s a respectable number, and exponentially more than a lot of titles considered “niche”.

    But now that we’re seeing the last days of cheaper development on a very technologically specific platform like the 3DS, I’m not sure it makes much sense to keep doing exclusives.

    Anyway, all things considered, if this remains a Switch exclusive at launch, I do hope the best possible scenario plays out and that the stars align for it. I will add that I absolutely love the Switch as a concept, and I want it to turn into what it has the potential to turn into, especially where RPGs are concerned. I do see the draw of a game like this being on that platform (and enjoy playing games like this handheld myself), and I hope to have one by the time it’s released (not to mention Octopath Traveler!)
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  • Avatar for Ralek #11 Ralek 11 months ago
    @discohospital I remember reading those headline as well, though I don't recall one that drew an argumentative line straight from more-Zeldas-sold-than-Switchs to Switch-must-be-a-great-success. That is not to say that none such existed, just that I didn't come across one like it.

    The point is that you cannot derive an insight into the attach rate of a system based on one game. In fact, that is the polar opposite of what attach rate is all about:
    Let's assume everyone who bought a Switch, would have also bought Zelda (some people, for whatever reason, might have even bought several ones). That could be a good indication in terms of a strong attach rate down the road, sure, but it could also mean, the exact opposite, that people bought the Switch for Zelda, and then went on to buy nothing else or very litte else for it ... hence you'd end up with truly horrible attach down the road.

    That is important, because seeing as it is a 'rate', or in other words a ratio between two different units (sales of the e.g. 'console' and 'games') it is not contingent on absolute sales numbers. If the Switch had only Zelda, the attach rate would be fantastic, but the same would be true whether there was one Switch sold or a millions Switchs sold.

    At least that is my understanding of the concept. Obviously though, you are quite right, that without a significant installbase, the best attach rate will not lead to the number of sales companies tend to look for :-)

    It's true that the library of the Switch will fill up and this 'gold rush' will come to a close. It's worth noting though, that the Switch will - for the foreseeable future - have a smaller library by a significant margin that the Switch, and that also holds true for games that could compete with SMTV. I think the Switch will be an amazing jRPG down the line (with games like Xenoblade and Octopath Traveler already on the horizon or only weeks) away, but alas, there is still a ways to go until it caught up with the PS4 in terms of sheer numbers of jRPG games available (though that is an argument bout quantity, not quality to be sure).

    As you say, it's quite possible that the game will be still like 2 years away from a release in the WEst, but the same is true for any other major jRPG that could be newly announced for the Switch any day now. Hence, I doubt the market will be saturated by the time SMT comes around, which of course, it wouldn't be anyways, because the game is so specific in terms of it's audience.

    "I see no equivalency between Xbox One and PS4 (nor indeed between Xbox One and Switch) when it comes to Atlus’ target market."

    That was kinda my point though. The xbox audience encapsulates the mainstream 'western'/ North American audience like no other systems. The games that sell the best through-out a given year, are the core pillars (at least traditionally) of the Xbox brand, think like:
    Call of Duty, Destiny (Bungie), Assassins Creed, Fifa, Madden (!), NBA (!) ... with Madden and NBA and Fifa obviously having particular tilts within the 'western' region.

    You made a point about japanese developers wanting to reach out to broader audiences in west. Well, not to oversimply, but if you really want to make it BIG - capital letters - this is the audience we are talking about. In other words, if you are successful with that audience, you definitely can make it on Xbox - or, to put it on its head, if you can't make it on Xbox, then that audience is probably not accessible to you.

    Hence, you basically said it yourself then, the mainstream of 'western' gaming is not accessible to Atlus. An Atlus RPG will never to the yearly sales charts in North America or Europe, not even by a long shot. All possible tendencies of convergence aside, the Japanese market is very different from those two markets and incidentally that is exactly where Microsoft never matched to even so much as create a meaningful foothold.

    But I think we are already in agreement, that it's really only about finding and possibly creating more niche markets in the west, instead of really appealing to the mainstream. That much is definitely more likely on Playstation than on Xbox, absolutely. PS has a rich history going back to the PSX in terms of bringing this kind of content to dedicated audience in the west, even though that reputation - in my humble opinion - has suffered in the Ps3 and Ps4 era somewhat (which is of course due to many factors, with the cost and demands of HD developments being just one of them).

    I still think that a game like SMT has different priorities: With No. 1 being trying to find success within Japan, and only No. 2 being about 'compatibility' with a broader western audience. Persona, as you said, is definitely a strong seller in the west, but even that cannot be a stand-in for a mainline SMT game. I'd point to the pivot of FE Awakening towards 'waifus'/'husbandos' and the whole social-sim/breeding aspect, which afforded the game unprecedented success in the west. Persona works in a different vein, definitely in terms of 'waifus'/'husbandos' fandom appeal, but also the whole actual dating sim aspect of it - which is absent from SMT. Persona I think, starting with P3/FES, had a strong structural and stylisic appeal beyond Japan, that SMT never quite achieved.

    Hence, if you ask me, I think ATlus thinking was this: SMT is very much a Japanese game. SMT is very much a game suited to portable play (think about all that grind ^^). The Switch is future of portable play (besides smart devices of course), certainly in Japan. The Switch actually has a more than decent chance of overtaking the PS4 down the road. I'd go so far as to say that this is a way more likely outcome than an unlikely one. With the 3DS dying, moving to the Switch must seem like the most logical course of action for them.

    They are thus not chasing the mainstream western market, like e.g. Capcom with Monster Hunter, but they are trying to stabilize their existing market on a new device. In short that is the purpose of SMTV in my book. It's supposed to safe guard the transition of their existing audience from the 3DS to the Switch. THAT cannot be accomplished by bringing the game to the PS4.

    I'd found this on Siliconera: "Atlus decided on going with the Nintendo Switch so that fans can enjoy the game’s story in HD at home on their TVs, while playing portable or tabletop mode to put in the grind to level up and fuse demons at the comfort of your own bed."

    (http://www.siliconera.com/2017/10/24/shin-megami-tensei-v-made-nintendo-switch/)

    This gels well with my view on what's going on. I think the point could be made that ALSO bringing the game to the eg. Ps4 (or even PC) would not necessarily hurt it's purpose in terms of facilitating the 3DS-Switch-audience transference, but keep in mind that Atlus is actually a small company with still very little experience in terms of sprawling HD RPGs (actually only Persona 5 and GIR#Fe come to mind, with Cathrine being not much HD and not much sprawling ^^), that has a strong need to focus its development ressources very carefully.

    It is quite possible, that down the road, the game will be announced for other systems as well, in terms of forthcoming ports, but right now, it's a Switch exclusive. Just to be clear, I don't think that is any kind of malice on Atlus part, or any kind of naivete of theirs in terms of sales potential on the Ps4 (or PC), but just a reflection of their priorities sitll being somewhat Japan centric, and certainly more focused right now on bringing 3DS audience to the Switch, than to expand or please potential audiences on the Ps4 (or PC).

    Those are just different goals simply put. There is the sales of one game, SMTV, then there is the sales of major Atlus projects (developed and published) down the road, like e.g. Etrian Odyssey sequels and bunch of other stuff. For this to be viable in the future, the Switch needs to be established as a clear 3Ds successor over the next 2 years. Again, my read here is that is the priority and that is pretty much all there is to this.

    SO yeah, to directly address your comment in this regard, I think it does make sense to keep doing exclusive, esp. if a cross-platform PC-PS4-Switch development of a niche title like SMTV is maybe too taxing, esp. IF (I could be wrong after all) the purpose of the whole game is really not making a giant profit by itself, but rather paving the way into the future. I mean, there are companies who operate single-mindedly from quarterlies to quarterlies, but thankfully that is not a universal theme all-around yet.

    Last but not least, I also hope it'll a success, for the sake of the franchise, for the sake of Atlus future, and for the sake of the Switch being more than a Nintendo-1st-party-games-machine! :-)
    I'd definitely suggest getting a Switch, if you have any interest in the library it is building. It certainly is my most used gaming device these days, and I do have a PC, an Xbox one, a PS4, a 3DS, a Vita and a bunch of other oldies ^^ I can only see it taking even up more of my time, with time consuming RPGs like Xenoblade and, as you mentioned, Octopath Traveler (the demo was amazing btw ^^) out in the next couple of weeks and months. I mostly use it in portable mode, though TV mode works better in some situations, like playing ARMs with friends or FE:W in splitscreen ;-)

    It's wonderfully flexible, and I think that will definitely speak to the reality of the life of the jRPG audience in Japan - that is just an educated guess though :-)
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  • Avatar for discohospital #12 discohospital 11 months ago
    The Zelda attach rate line was more one that GameStop (and maybe Nintendo) were pushing - I think some outlets (or at least fans) did pick up on it in that way. But admittedly it was a bit lazy of me to throw that out there like that. I wasn't really trying to tie it into my point, to be honest, so I probably shouldn't have brought it up. And it definitely wasn't my intention to argue in any shape or form that one game can be used to determine what you're talking about, so I hope I wasn't unclear. Basically, to rephrase, my point was that any game with any kind of potential is going to sell well on Switch right now, simply because it's new and popular and there isn't much on it yet. But that's now, and I don't think this is coming out soon enough to cash in on the particular gold rush you're talking about.

    EDIT: I do understand attach rates, but I think I phrased it very awkwardly in my previous post. I think we're saying the same thing with regard to that, basically.

    And on that note, I didn't specify but I had Japan in mind with the 2019 date (given how early it looks, and the fact that they declined to even give a window, or even a year). But they may be quicker, who knows. If it's early 2019, we should get it here during the same year - at least one would hope.

    I understand what you're saying with regard to the Xbox One, but it was never my intention to suggest that I think Atlus could or would aim for the kind of massive scale you bring up. I suppose "success" is a relative term and is too vague in this case. My original point revolves around the fact that, in terms of sheer numbers (and putting aside the obvious differences in scale of marketplace), a lot of Japanese games are selling more in the west than in Japan, and Japanese developers are becoming very conscious of that, and are talking about it openly and frequently. Atlus included, particularly as of this year. But yes, I think we seem to be on the same page there.

    I can't speculate too much about the ins and outs of SMT's popularity, or lack of it, in any meaningful way beyond what you describe and what's frequently talked about in the fandom. But it does appear to me that it's fallen off significantly in terms of popularity even in Japan (I mean, I think they were reaching for a different audience with SMT4A for a reason - although I think a line does have to be drawn between a derivative game like that and a totally new title, so I'd expect bigger regardless with V). So I think it would make sense to get the first HD game in the series as much exposure as possible. I think it has a chance to regain some ground for the series. Ultimately I can't really speculate too finely about that in particular, though.

    Back to the Switch exclusivity - really, I just go back to the (I'd presume) ease of portability of an HD game. I don't know a lot about engines, but some of the speculation about the possibility of the game being multiplatform invoked the fact that it's being done on Unreal 4. It seems logical to me that it would be easier to port for that reason, but I dunno. Other (smaller!) Japanese devs are porting like it's going out of style (to varying degrees of success in terms of quality, granted), so Atlus is kind of an outlier in this regard. But Atlus being weird and conservative wouldn't be new. I see the logic of moving the 3DS audience and the handheld appeal, and maybe they have some kind of agenda that would be served by moving their audience to Switch in particular, as you suggest.

    EDIT: And just to be clear and tie back into my point about the PS4 being a platform that makes sense for this - I think the PS4's domination is in fact going to last for some time. Maybe the Switch meets it eventually, but that's very optimistic. Nintendo's "late" entries into console generations and all, there may be a time when the Switch outdoes the PS4, but it'll probably have more to do with there being a PS5 or something. And I'd also like to make it clear that I'm not really making the arguments I've been making entirely out of personal interest, or any antipathy towards Nintendo. Realistically, there's a good chance I'll have a Switch by the time this comes out, and that may well be the platform I end up preferring for this game regardless. I just really don't want SMT to be stuck to one platform in an age where that isn't really making sense for most games anymore.

    It's definitely my plan to get a Switch, it's just a finances thing. That and with a new platform, I tend to like to wait for That One Game that I can't resist while others accumulate that I'm interested in but wouldn't necessarily take the plunge for. And honestly, I think Octopath just might be that one for me, based on what I've seen (haven't been able to play the demo, of course). And yeah, I hope it will catch on in Japan for its handheld appeal (although that's much tougher climb now than it was when the 3DS launched, I think).

    I actually don't even own a Windows PC - for me it's just PS3, PS4, 3DS, Vita, Wii U (in addition to older stuff). But I think it's going to be hard for any Japanese company to keep ignoring PC going forward.Edited 7 times. Last edited October 2017 by discohospital
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