Microsoft has revealed they will be returning at this year’s Tokyo Game Show.
On a post on Xbox Wire, they revealed that they will have an Xbox Digital Broadcast at September 21, 2023, at 2 AM PT.
To quote Microsoft:
“Players can expect to hear progress updates from Xbox and Bethesda Softworks and see a creatively diverse collection of games from creators predominantly located in Japan and across Asia. We’ll also share exciting new games coming to Xbox Game Pass, which continues to grow with great content from teams all around Asia.”
This year is particularly auspicious for Microsoft and their Japan presence. It’s not every year that Microsoft can say a Japanese studio made one of their best exclusives for the year.
But then, the circumstances that led to Microsoft to acquiring a Japanese game studio are unusual in itself. In general, it is unlikely for a Japanese company, like, say, Nintendo, to be bought by a US company, like Microsoft, or for that matter, Amazon, or Disney.
That’s because Japan has a law called the Foreign Exchange and Foreign Trade Control Law. This law expressly limits the degree and the terms of foreign ownership of Japanese companies. The Japanese government reserves the right to review any such deals, and if they decide there is a national security threat, or other concerns, they can force the companies to cancel or revise their deals.
For this reason, big companies like Nintendo and Sony are somewhat protected from something like an activist takeover. But, this doesn’t apply to all Japanese video game companies. As we all know as well, the crown prince of Saudi Arabia was able to finalize acquiring a controlling interest in SNK Corporation, via his organization the MISK Foundation.
In the case of Tango Gameworks, early on in the company’s history, it ran into financial trouble. Bethesda Softworks intervened to save the studio, by arranging for its parent company, ZeniMax Media, to acquire the company.
Tango was already owned by Bethesda when it released its games The Evil Within, The Evil Within 2, Ghostwire Tokyo, and most recently, Hi-Fi Rush.
Hi-Fi Rush was a success, and an unusual release in many ways. Part of the consequences of this success is Microsoft allegedly planning to invest heavily in the studio moving forward.
Microsoft did not mention Tango Gameworks or Hi-Fi Rush in this press release. But given the Xbox’s notorious low popularity in the country, it stands to reason that they would talk up their successful Japanese game to the Japanese crowd, to spark new interest in the Xbox brand. Microsoft may very well also announce some new projects with Japanese companies, not just Tango Gameworks, in this event as well.