Grand Knights History was slated for release some time in early Spring, roughly March. That time came and went with nary a word from XSeed Games, the game’s North American publisher. Many wondered if the game was just delayed. Others were fearful of Vanillaware’s other game, Dragon’s Crown, getting the shaft. Thankfully, that game is in good hands. Unfortunately, the same can’t be said for Grand Knights History as Xseed announced overnight that they have cancelled the NA localization of Grand Knights History, citing unavailable development resources. However, unless someone else picks up the game, I have a few hunches that this decision goes beyond unavailable resources.
First reason could be how the game is set up. It was a game with a strong emphasis on online play… on a PSP. The PSP and the games on it regularly sell well in Japan and the market there is as strong as ever. Today, PSPs still outsell Vita systems in Japan. Over here however, the PSP is a virtual ghost town with developers and gamers point fingers at who’s to blame for the current state the PSPs in. Couple this with the fact that the Vita’s presence, not sales, is making the PSP look outdated, and you could see that Grand Knights History was bound to find almost no audience, even by niche standards. However, this could’ve all been rectified by making the game a download only affair and sell it over PSN.
The second reason could be… Atlus. Now this is me really pulling something out of my ass here. But who knows, maybe Vanillaware wants some consistency in who publishes what in different territories. To date in North America, Vanillaware titles are in the hands of three publishers. They are NIS America (Grim Grimoire), Atlus (Odin Spere, Dragon’s Crown), and UTV Ignition (Muramasa: The Demon Blade). I would assume that if Vanillaware wanted to do something with these properties, like sequels or crossovers, it’d be anime-distributor-levels of legal rights hell. Am I suggesting that Vanillaware might want to have Atlus handle Grand Knights History? Maybe. But for now, all of Atlus’ and Vanillaware’s efforts are being poured into Dragon’s Crown.
Which leads us into the third, and most plausible hunch. It could be that Vanillaware’s business with Dragon’s Crown is eating into the time with Grand Knights History and right now Vanillaware is prioritizing all of its resources into finishing Dragon’s Crown. Some of the comments at Siliconera are stating that while the translating work was to be done by Xseed, the actual coding was to be done by Vanillaware. So with this in mind you can see that Vanillaware is pretty busy. Maybe Vanillaware should’ve waited until Dragon’s Crown was closer to completion before selling off the license to localize Grand Knights History.
Grand Knights History Canceled For North America [Siliconera]