Bandai Namco, publisher of critically acclaimed series Dark Souls as well as upcoming release Elden Ring announced plans to create its own Metaverse. Its vision will bring characters from all of its games together in one connected universe.
Considering the vast array of IP this gaming giant owns, the prospect is more than a little enticing. From Dragon Ball Z, to Pac Man, Dark Souls to SoulCalibur, this could be the crossover to end them all.
The announcement came on Tuesday this week. Bandai Namco stated it would invest ¥15 Billion, around $130 Million in the project. An “IP metaverse” known as the “All Bandai Namco Concept.” This vision was shared in an investors’ presentation demonstrating the company’s mid-term plan.
The publisher hopes this will create “new framework for connecting with fans” as well as “maximise IP value over the medium to long term”. The money invested will apparently go toward “data foundation” and the “development of content.”
The Bandai Namco Vision
The concept of the Metaverse was introduced by Meta, the company formally known as Facebook. Other industry giants have intimated interest in this space, with Disney and Microsoft forming their own plans.
But while Bandai Namco might lack the financial clout to compete with these tech-giants, its ideal is novel. Focusing on beloved IP to build a world based on games adored by fans the world over seems a lot more interesting than creating a sprawling, yet vapid social space.
Of course, whilst Bandai Namco might control the IP, they didn’t develop many of the games that could feature in this grand design. Questions still remain as to whether any of the games developers will contribute. Will the “All Bandai Namco Concept” include new content from developers like From Software? Or will it simply connect all games in a giant, virtual arcade. Still, an interesting concept however you spin it. And with the investors now suitably informed, expect updates to be fourth coming.
“Video games are great. I should know, I’ve played some.”
Olly S, July 2020