Details on the release of the Xbox One in Japan have been revealed. Microsoft will release the Xbox One in Japan on September 4 with different price variations.
Similar to the pricing of the American version of the Xbox One, it will go on sale in Japan for 49,980 yen ($490) for the console bundled with the Kinect and 39,980 yen ($392) for just the console. As proven by American sales, the option of buying the Xbox One without the Kinect seems favorable over being forced to purchase the console and the motion sensor as a bundle. The price of purchasing the Kinect as an add-on in Japan has not yet been released.
The Xbox One sold in Japan will be identical to the console sold in the US. The shape of the console and controller will remain the same. The console will include the same hardware specs with a Blu-ray Disc player, 8-core CPU, 8GB of RAM, and 500GB of internal storage space. The connections will also stay the same and will include the HDMI pass-through for watching television channels through the console.
In Japan, Microsoft will push the same games as they are in the US. Titles such as the car racing Forza Motorsport 5, first-person shooter Quantum Break, action-packed Ryse: Son of Rome and zombie-fest Dead Rising 3 are displayed and noted as games available at launch. Other noted titles being advertised are Sunset Overdrive which will release later this year and Halo 5: Guardians which will release sometime next year.
Through the announcement of the details of the Xbox One release date, Microsoft is quick to assure that Japan will receive as much attention as any other region. Microsoft announced 48 Japanese video game developers are interested in creating games for the Xbox One in addition to those that were previously announced. The head of Microsoft Studios, Phil Spencer, also announced that a well-known Japanese developer will create an exclusive title for the console. Spencer also mentions “something never before seen” from Microsoft will appear at the 2014 Tokyo Game Show just weeks after the Xbox One releases in Japan.
The Xbox One launch in Japan is important as Microsoft’s last two game consoles did not sell very well in the Japanese market. Many game developers noted the loyalty to Japanese products as the reason why the original Xbox and the Xbox 360 barely made any sales in Japan. Other game developers spoke out about Microsoft’s lack of creating Japanese specific content and marketing.
Video game insiders are commenting that the wait to bring the Xbox One to the Japanese market is being spent to fine-tune and market the console correctly when it releases to its weakest-selling region. Microsoft is currently going through a Japan-only “Xbox One Journey” promotional sweepstakes where lucky winners will receive a gold brick or other prizes. The Xbox One in America is receiving constant updates and the console that sells in Japan will have those updates included. Microsoft is also promising Japan that the console will receive all future updates.
Now that Japan has details on the launch of the Xbox One, gamers in that region will know what to expect and how much it will cost. The September 4 release date is a few months away and Microsoft promises some new announcements before the console hits store shelves.
By Raul Hernandez