For all its successes elsewhere, the original Xbox never sold very well in Japan. But that might be about to change, for Microsoft's next-gen machine is picking up interest and high scores across the nation, including polling ahead of Nintendo's Revolution at the Tokyo Game Show.
In a survey of 1084 people undertaken at TGS in September, 71.8% said they were most looking forward to PS3, but a surprising 23% said they would rather own an Xbox 360, ahead of Revolution with 20.9%.
And just to emphasise how much of a growth in expectation that is, 86% of the gamers who voted already owned a PS2, 32% had a Gamecube while only 11% owned the original version of uncle Bill's console.
Of course, a pinch of salt is needed with every statistic and here are a few grams of sodium to help your digestion: this self-selecting group of Tokyo's most hardcore, 54% Super Famicon-owning, RPG obsessed gamers had just been given the chance to get hands-on with 360 all day, while all they had to see of Revolution was the new TV remote-style controller.
While the punters seem to be looking forward to Xbox 360, the Japanese press seem positively delighted with the machine's launch line-up. Highly respected gaming weekly Famitsu has rated Ridge Racer at 34/40, Need for Speed Most Wanted at 33/40 and Perfect Dark Zero at 33/40. Which is none to shabby compared to Mario Kart DS's 36/40.
Whatever the reception it expects, Microsoft itself is making final preparations for Xbox 360's Japanese launch on 10 December by erecting four giant Xbox statues across the country.
Standing 12 feet tall and playing game trailers on a 36 inch screen they will either promote a flurry of sales, or terrify the tiny and timid Japanese nation into thinking that that really is how big 360 is.
There are currently 1 users browsing this thread. (0 members and 1 guests)