Virtual Console Blaster Master To Spearhead Sunsoft Revival
Posted by Damien McFerran
Famed Japanese developer confirms impending release of 8-bit classic
It would seem that Japanese developer Sunsoft is about to support the Virtual Console in a big way.
Former Working Designs big wig Victor Ireland is currently making big noises over at NeoGAF about some interesting projects he's involved with, and Sunsoft's resurgence would appear to be something that is taking up a lot of his time right now.
Ireland's new company - called Gaijinworks - is assisting Sunsoft with some new ventures, one of is a Virtual Console release of the popular NES action platformer Blaster Master, which is due this month.
Here's the official press release:
Sunsoft, a division of SUNCORPORATION, has today announced their return to active console game publishing for the North American market, aided by startup GAIJINWORKS.
Kiharu Yoshida, CEO of SUNCORPORATION (JASDAQ: 6736) initiated a meeting to discuss the possibility of reinvigorating the Sunsoft console gaming brand in the USA. At that meeting, it was quickly obvious that the relationship was a great fit. GAIJINWORKS President, Victor Ireland states, “My relationship with Sunsoft and Yoshida-san goes back more than 15 years, and when this opportunity presented itself to help Sunsoft return to the US console market, it was a natural fit for both our companies.”
This month, the Sunsoft website is being re-launched at sunsoftgames.com, where users will be able to get the latest information about current releases, upcoming games, and special promotions, as well as interact in the forum. Kiharu Yoshida wanted gamers to know that Sunsoft plans to launch a number of special promotions where big prizes can be won, and exclusive, limited edition premiums would be up for grabs as well. Ireland added that some of the swag being made would only be available through these promotions – and is sure to please Sunsoft fans, new and old.
The first title out of the gate for Sunsoft USA will be the Wii Virtual Console release of the Nintendo Entertainment System classic Blaster Master, due in December 2009. Originally titled Meta Fight in Japan, this groundbreaking game was given a story makeover and released in 1988 as Blaster Master™ here in the United States. It received strong critical acclaim and fan raves almost from the moment it hit these shores.
Blaster Master™ is still often listed on magazine and online charts as one of the top 25 NES games ever created. The sublime blend of side-scrolling shooting/platforming mixed with overhead perspective action/shooting areas is just as addictive now as it was then. It will be available for 500 Wii points.
In the coming weeks, additional titles coming to the US market will be announced, many of which will surprise and delight gaming fans. Ireland added, “This first Wii release is a great start, but there is one upcoming announcement in particular that will demonstrate just how serious Yoshida-san is about rebuilding the Sunsoft console gaming brand here. Game fans are going to be pretty happy when they hear about it – I know I was. “
About SUNCORPORATION. Located in Aichi prefecture in Japan, SUN CORPORATION has been innovating electronic equipment and software for almost forty years. Their corporate slogan, “Dream, Challenge, and Creation” perfectly summarizes the spirit that gave birth to their software company Sunsoft. Worldwide, Sunsoft has developed or published almost 100 games for both consoles and arcades. They also publish for iPhone and Windows mobile platforms.
About GAIJINWORKS. GAIJINWORKS was founded by Victor Ireland after spending more than 15 years as President of Working Designs, where he innovated deluxe packaging, special premiums, pack-in soundtracks and game documentaries for their RPG product. Many of the practices he innovated have become standard in the RPG segment, and console video games in general. GAIJINWORKS is focused on continuing a tradition of fanservice for game fans.
Blaster Master is certainly worth getting excited about but the prospect of more Sunsoft classics coming to the Wii has us giddy with expectation. Watch this space, folks.
Thanks to Nintendo Life reader Martyn De Weert for the tip.