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 Persona  dev Atlus' parent company files for 'rehabilitation'
Persona dev Atlus' parent company files for 'rehabilitation'
June 27, 2013 | By Mike Rose

June 27, 2013 | By Mike Rose
More: Console/PC, Business/Marketing

Index Corporation, the Japanese company that owns video game developer and publisher Atlus, today announced that it is filing for 'rehabilitation'.

The decision was settled on during a meeting with the company's board of directors today, and approved by a Tokyo District Court. Index has filed for Civil Rehabilitation, the Japanese equivalent of the Bankruptcy procedure.

Under this procedure, the company will continue to operate, while a court appoints a supervisor to oversee the implementation of the rehabilitation plan.

Index says that its expected revenues for the last few years have not risen in the way that it was expecting -- especially in overseas markets -- and as a result it has incurred heavy losses, and the company's financial condition has worsened.

With debt totalling 24.5 billion yen ($$249.7 million), then has now led to uneasiness from suppliers, says the company.

Atlus was previously dissolved into parent company Index Holdings back in 2010. The studio is best known for role-playing game series Shin Megami Tensei, and the Persona spin-off franchise.

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Mike Murray
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If the worst happens, I hope Atlus gets picked up by Sony or Nintendo.

Kujel s
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Of the two Nintendo is the one who could actually afford to buy anyone right now.

Matthew Mouras
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One of my absolute favorite developers. Hope they can restructure and come back stronger.

Greg Wilcox
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Not sure Nintendo would be the "best" bet for Atlus... at least on the home console front. The 3DS is covered with great exclusives, but trying to get a niche to buy into the Wii U will be tricky. As for Sony? Hmmm... I think Atlus may want to keep themselves open to other platforms.

Perhaps a Square/Enix/Atlus thing or (eek) Namco/Bandai/Atlus? Eh, we'll see. I hate over-speculation anyway...

E Zachary Knight
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I would hate for Square to get a hold of Atlas. Atlas would be better off with nearly any other company.

Kenneth Wesley
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Atlus has Shin Megami Tensai IV and Shin Megami Tensai X Fire Emblem coming, so it would be perfect for Nintendo to have a super niche RPG studio.

Brian Tsukerman
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I guess the Shin Megami Tensei universe is in real peril now. Too bad there's no party of protagonists to save Atlus IRL.

Then again, Japanese publishers have been having trouble appealing to western markets for the last few years. The last game out of SquareEnix that had some critical acclaim here was Deux Ex, and technically that was from Eidos Montreal.

Is it that the turn-based RPG has gone from once being a console staple to a niche market as time has passed, so much so that nobody even wants to pay full price for it when they could be playing an action RPG or an FPS with online multiplayer instead?

Hakim Boukellif
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I doubt the niche appeal of Atlus' products has anything to do with this; in fact, the Atlus brand has been doing pretty well for itself. Index, on the other hand, was already in economic trouble before they absorbed Atlus (which seemed to me as an attempt at healing the tree by absorbing a healthy branch).

Hopefully, Atlus is still a separate enough entity that it could be sold even if Index were to go under.

Pablo Simbana
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I really hope they recover, I'd hate to see persona leaving, persona 4 is easily the best game I've ever played and I really want to keep pleaying turn based rpgs, I cannot trust squareenix anymore in rpgs, they are leaning toward the action adventures now :/

Matthew Buxton
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Maybe they will get picked up by Gungho like Grasshopper? They have the cash and would most likely leave them alone to make their own games.

Paul Orlemanski
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Please note that this is from a fan and I'm not kicking someone who is down, but Atlus's story is parallel to that of Working Designs. A gaming developer/publisher that throughout its history would only cater to what many perceived; not towards the hardcore gamer or RPG fan so much, but overtly to the collector market. I remember during the entire PS1 and PS2 era, their print run on games were insanely small and very hard to come by and see again unless you preordered. They should have expanded their operations back then as people where slowly moving away from Square-Enix instead of doing it after releasing Catherine since they had (and continue to have) the fan base and clout to expand back then.