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Bandai Namco posts third quarter slump, despite early Tekken 8 success

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Bandai Namco’s third-quarter earnings report for 2023-2024’s fiscal year shows the company hit a downturn in its video game division.

For the nine-month period ending in December 2023, the publisher posted 263.0 million yen (or $1.75 million). It’s an 8.9 percent decline from the 288.57 million yen in the same period for 2022-2023.

Likewise, operating profit was 1.61 million yen, a sharp falloff of 96.5 percent from 2022-23’s 46.64 milllion yen.

A bright spot came in Tekken 8, which released in late January. Per VGC, Bandai Namco said in its conference call the fighting game has exceeded projections and sold 2 million copies thus far.

To compare, Tekken 7’s home version hit that milestone two months after its 2017 launch. In light of Tekken 8’s fast growth, Bandai Namco expects sales to grow in 2024-2025’s fiscal year.

Bandai Namco starts to tighten its wallet

At its conference call, the publisher partially credited Elden Ring for its current dropoff. FromSoftware’s fantasy RPG sold very well last fiscal year, and Bandai Namco’s 2023 slate didn’t hit quite as strongly.

Even so, Bandai Namco stressed that Armored Core 6 was “popular,” and that Dragon Ball and One Piece games have held their ground.

Looking ahead, Bandai Namco indicated it’d be more selective about what it releases. To prove its point, a spokesperson revealed five unannounced projects were quietly canceled.

It was further revealed Bandai Namco has changed its development process. There are now “stricter standards” for continuing a project, along with changes on how the company tracks development costs.

Speaking candidly, the rep said it was “considering the best way to optimize our titles by classification, such as strategic worldwide titles and casual titles for light users.”

Yesterday, Sony president Hiroki Totoki said studios need to be better at being businesses. His comments focused on budget and development schedules, and he all but said the cost of making games was too high.

Bandai Namco shares his sentiment and stressed it would “examine our development system carefully, and strengthen development with an emphasis on quality.”

About the Author(s)

Justin Carter

Contributing Editor, GameDeveloper.com

A Kansas City, MO native, Justin Carter has written for numerous sites including IGN, Polygon, and SyFy Wire. In addition to Game Developer, his writing can be found at io9 over on Gizmodo. Don’t ask him about how much gum he’s had, because the answer will be more than he’s willing to admit.

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