In the kindest sense of the term, GaijinWorks founder Victor Ireland is one magnificent bastard.
If you've followed him since the Working Designs days—back when we plucky JRPG fans had no choice but to band together—you'd know he's fond of pet projects that typically see the light of day long after their platforms go kaput. Even though Ireland's decisions weren't always profitable ones, there was still something undeniably cool about, say, buying a six-disc PlayStation RPG collection mere months after the PS2 had seen the likes of Metal Gear Solid 2, Silent Hill 2, Ico, Devil May Cry, and Final Fantasy X.
With the upcoming Summon Night 5, Ireland (via his company GaijinWorks) hasn't altered his preference for unconventional releases one bit. This year will (or at least should) see the physical release of two PSP games: Summon Night 5 and Class of Heroes 3. Of course, these two titles will also see digital releases, but if you're still invested in the world of physical media, what's been announced for the meatspace edition of Summon Night 5 should have you clearing some space on your shelves.
Pre-ordering it through Gaijinworks' site—basically, your only purchasing option—will get you the standard UMD, case, manual, and reversible cover insert, along with a 14" by 19" poster, soundtrack CD, and a code for one digital download. While we former Working Designs fans may remember the days of more extravagant goodies, sadly, punching puppets and pendant replicas are relics of those extravagant Clinton Years, when the roads were paved with gold and people freely bought soda with small, sugary orbs floating inside.
The PSP has always been a tiny RPG beast, so it's nice to see a currently underappreciated system see a few more games that feel right at home. One question, though: Just who out there is still pressing new UMD discs? Is there a factory out there that's still set up for this purpose? Perhaps formatting the thousands of unsold copies of Rob Schneider's The Animal stamped onto this doomed media format? Then again, some questions are best left to the ages.