Atlus parent company files for bankruptcy
posted on 06.27.13 at 11:30 AM EDT by (@admeady)
Dragon's Crown still on track for release.

Atlus’ parent company Index Holdings has declared bankruptcy at Tokyo District Court.

The company, which bought Atlus in 2006, is 24.5 billion yen in debt, which is roughlyt USD $250 million or GBP £160 million.

President Yoshimi Ochiai and Chairman Masami Ochiai intend to resign.

The Securities and Exchange Surveillance Commission of Japan have been investigating the company for allegedly improper accounting via fictitious transactions, specifically under the suspicious of exaggerating revenues using round-trip transactions.

Meanwhile, Atlus Japan said everything is still on track with their upcoming game releases. Etrian Odyssey Untold: The Millennium Girl was released today in Japan, and Dragon’s Crown is due out on July 25.

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  • whiteferrero

    i always feel that atlus kind of operated separately from index holding… hope this does not affect atluis games..

  • LETS PRAY FOR LOCALIZATION

    R.i.P Persona 5 /trollface/

    • SuperLuigi

      :-(

    • rainelee

      Don’t say such a thing..(“T~T)

    • EvE

      not even as joke say that…. :_:

    • Rahavic

      this ruined my day, cuz it was exactly what I was thinking to myself

  • Selcca

    Can’t say that this was surprising with all the earlier news. Hopefully somebody will buy up Atlus (preferably not nintendo).

    • Sevyne

      I honestly feel that if it had to happen, it probably wouldn’t be Nintendo or Sony.

      They seem to have a decent relationship with NIS so perhaps they splinter away from Index and get picked up from them? I dunno, just a thought.

    • SuperLuigi

      My guess it will be Nintendo since they were working on smt x fire emblem. Id be hapoy if anybody saved them though…I would seriously miss snk and smt games.

  • papermario

    nintendo will buy them. They would not only be the best fit. They have the best relationship with them

    • CirnoTheStrongest

      That would be a sad situation :(

      Persona 5 being WiiU/3DS exclusive would be depressing…

    • Calvin Chikelue

      I can see that too and I’d be all for it but I’d rather they didn’t stay with a single platform holder.

    • Raiyu

      Nintendo doesn’t buy companies.

      It’d be horrible for any platform holder to get their hands on them.

      I’m hoping GungHo, NIS, or even Marvelous snatch them up. I’d hate for Nintendo or Sony to buy them out.

      • DarthBrian

        Tecmo-Koei or Namco-Bandai are options too I suppose.

      • Nitraion

        Agreed… Neutral company is the best choice….

        • Eder García

          NIS is neutral? almost all of their games are on playstation

          • Nitraion

            Well Sony got dragon’s crown and Nintendo got SMT IV…I like that, if they join to 3rd party it means we can get another game in future in 3DS,Vita,WiiU,PS3/PS4 or even xbox and PC…
            I just don’t want console company own it,its like limitation…
            Even NIS game most on playstasion if atlus do join them it doesn’t mean they have to release on Playstasion only since they not bound to playstasion…rather than Nintendo or sony buy them i prefer like this

          • Elvick

            That’s because their attempts on Nintendo platforms failed to make a mark.

            It’s not like they never tried. NISA can’t just bum rush Nintendo with countless titles waiting for their name to finally take hold there.

            They have to be more careful, so they can stay in business. They tried. Maybe they’ll try again in the future.

            Until then, they do what makes sense for them. And that’s PlayStation. Since most NIS fans know they’re on PlayStation and like PS to begin with.

      • Locksus

        Well, Nintendo does buy companies, but not as often as the others. Monolith Soft being one example.

        • Raiyu

          You are right, it isn’t very often that they do buy someone out. But with the example of Monolith, Nintendo already had a (small) stake in Monolith Soft until Namco sold the rest of it to Nintendo over time.

      • DesmaX

        Honestly, if NIS buy them I can see them all going to Sony platforms… Or every other developer, honestly, they all seems focused on them.

        Hm, makes me wonder…

        • Raiyu

          That’s true. But like Elvik said, they have tried to get themselves on Nintendo platforms but failed. This could be like their second wind if they do buy them out :)

      • PrinceHeir

        agree.

        either GungHo/Marvelous AQL will hopefully buy them up since they’ve been very supported with Grasshopper Manufacturer games, and it helps to have the Shin Megami Tensei, Persona, Etrian Oddysey, brand with them :)

        plus it would help that they can actually put dual audio.

        Atlus US stubbornness have got to go.

      • http://www.senran-international.boards.net/ TwinTails

        But Nintendo bought Monolith Soft so that’s not correct.

        • Raiyu

          They already had shares of Monolith with Namco. Namco then sold its shares to Nintendo. That’s a totally different situation.

          I believe they partially helped start up Monolith so to say they “bought” them wouldn’t be entirely correct either. Since they had already (partially) owned them.

      • papermario

        monolith?

  • Awnye

    So, I guess they’re getting outsourced again?

  • DesmaX
  • DarthBrian

    lol @ Index being crooks.

    :( @ Atlus’ future being up in the air.

  • epy

    As long as MS doesn’t buy them… I think Nintendo would be the best fit. They would let them do their thing without breathing on their necks. Bamco could also be a good fit.

    • Rafael Martines

      Noooooo exclusivity nooooo!!!! I support Namco to buy ATLUS o

      • epy

        I know what you mean, but most of the latest Atlus games have been on Nintendo systems anyways. Not much would change and Atlus would have a solid backer that would not whore out their properties for quick buck.

        Speaking of whoring out properties for a quick buck, I sure hope S-E doesn’t get near Atlus.

        • Kefkiroth

          You’re really missing Persona, one of Atlus’ biggest franchises. It would change a lot.
          Nintendo and Sony are good companies, but neither of them should get Atlus so that they won’t lose some of their fans.

    • Hikaru Lighthalzen

      p5 on wii u?

  • http://lukalovesgames.blogspot.de/ Alkaid

    Kinda saw this coming a while ago *sigh*
    Index holdings has been near bankruptcy for a while. And it wasn’t nice to hear it, since they bought up Atlus at that time.

    Dunno what will happen to Atlus after all of this, but I hope they will be able to create games once more.
    A company that’s thoughtful and caring would be best, that would rule Square Enix, Sony, Nintendo, Microsoft and Capcom completely out.

    Thank you nonetheless for the news, even though they are kind of devastating. ^^”

  • Locksus

    I’d like to know whether or not SMTxFF is still on track :I

    • http://www.senran-international.boards.net/ TwinTails

      It is if Sony or Microsoft doesn’t buy them.

  • Eder García

    for those who thinks Nintendo is going to buy Atlus: IMO, best case scenario, Nintendo is going to buy the STM IP and other companies will buy other Atlus IP (i see NIS buying the Persona IP so it will remain PlayStation exclusive)

    • http://www.senran-international.boards.net/ TwinTails

      Actually, whoever buys Atlus has control over all of their IPs, they can only sell them if Atlus themselves goes bankrupt.

  • Franggio Hogland

    I want to see Valve buying it.
    Valve wants Japanese games, I want more RPGs on PC.
    Valve is a good caring, nurturing, awesome company.
    Seriously I want this to happen.

    • Ritsujun

      LOOOOOOOOL

    • Warboss Aohd

      admittedly, dat would be interestin’ ta see if nothin’ else.

  • http://www.psvitadirect.com/ Kurisu Makise

    Apparently the company is simply under re-organization with the president and chairman, plus whomever else was responsible for the shady business resigning. With a new management in place, most probably with creditors being on the board, a strong focus on their Atlus brand and services, they’ll get back on track, no buy-outs needed for now. Though it’d probably be better to just spin-off Atlus and drop the rest, we’ll see.

    Though I feel this needs to be said, in the event that this is just unrecoverable period, if you guys are looking for a buy-out; do not wish for a platform holder to do it. Also do not wish for the IPs to be sold off individually ala THQ. It’s just not a good thing considering the niche that Atlus caters to. It has to be wholesale, everything in one bundle, to someone whom would be able to take advantage of all the different services they provide. Probably Gung-ho primarily, Tecmo Koei is on a roll lately and would probably immediately sign another Persona anime, among other things.

    An alternative though, if they got a few mergers going. I’m surprised some of the smaller devs haven’t paired up yet, like Compile Heart, Idea Factory,, Acquire got bought recently… A publisher with a few of the niche brands all in one, plus a western arm to publish is not a bad idea. I know I’d do it if I had the money ;-;

  • bloodiOS

    Sure hope Sony would smarten up and grab Atlus if Index goes under. And they better know how to treat these guys well after acquiring them…

  • OverlordZetta

    >Tecmo Koei buys Atlus
    >creates Atelier and MegaTen Musou
    >Warriors Orochi 4 features characters from both Gust and Atlus series
    >Atlus makes Romance of the Three Demons
    Everybody wins!!

    • Luna Kazemaru

      ok…I almost wanted that to happen

    • Nitraion

      Lol Persona musou will be awesome…
      SMTXGustXTales musou will be good too lol

    • http://gematsu.com/author/ro-kurorai 浪黒雷 (Roland Gmyrek)

      I also read that Koei might be interested in purchasing Atlus. Sounds good to me.

  • Fantasytales

    Can i just get another persona game?!

    • MrSirFeatherFang

      Not looking forward to SMTIV?

      • Guy_McDude

        You can like both. My first SMT was Nocturne but I sampled all the spinoffs like Devil Survivor and Persona. No need to pit them against eachother.

        • MrSirFeatherFang

          I suppose I’m not experienced in this extreme fan kind of stuff. It seems like Persona fans disregard the fact that Atlus have released games like DeSu series, Soul Hackers 3DS or even SMTIV and are still begging for a new Persona. Although we already know P5 is in development. Just nothing has been shown yet… How could people keep asking for a game to be released when they are also working on different (and probably) good games at the same time? I just felt a little annoyed. Sorry if I came across as a hater.

    • http://www.senran-international.boards.net/ TwinTails

      How can you think about Persona at a time like this?

  • PrinceHeir

    GungHo/Marvelous or NIS are the best bet(still prefer Gungho, just because they give proper treatment: see Lollipop Chainsaw, and upcoming Killer is Dead)

    Capcom: lol expect their IP’s to be handed of to random western devs.

    Square Enix: doubt they’ll be interested, probably wants to own the Persona franchise though

    Level 5: i don’t even think their US branch is doing anything as of now.

    Sony: ehh while it seems nice, i prefer them to be 3rd Part, same with Nintendo.

    Tecmo Koei: another good candidate, except the US branch are incompetent fucks who think they can just release a game without telling anyone. plus digital only in US us a major deal breaker.

    still wish they kept Dual Audio for Atelier Ayesha, despite Dead or Alive and Ninja Gaiden games having dual audio all the time.

    Namco Bandai: they barely even localize Tales, though they have been improving with localization of Ni No Kuni, Dark Souls 2, and Tales of Xillia(despite being late)

    so it’s either Gungho/Marevelous AQL, NIS or even Tecmo Koei/Namco Bandai

    • Learii

      I think you forgot about XSEED

      • z_merquise

        XSeed is a US-based publisher. They are owned by Marvelous.

    • z_merquise

      Someone also mentioned Gungho as one of the best candidates.

      Personally, I also prefer a 3rd party so Atlus can develop and publish games in any platform they wanted.

      • PrinceHeir

        but Gungho is 3rd party :D

        that’s why Killer is Dead is multiplatform(btw are you getting it?)

        though isn’t Marvelous part of Gungho or something?

        • Learii

          Gungho not always 3rd party tho look at ragnarok odyssey and ragnarok Tactics they are by Gungho

          • PrinceHeir

            it depends on how they develop games.

            Atlus is 3rd Party yet SMTIV is exclusive to 3DS, or Persona 4 Golden is only for PS Vita

  • Impressionnant

    They were one of the only good publishers. Sad.

  • Aurizen

    I wonder what will happen with persona 5

  • Skerj

    Stay far far away Square.

    • roninenix

      Square would actually be a good thing if they bought Atlus, though square is currently losing money atm. The companies they own lately have been making good games under their own control

  • LordKaiser

    I hope it don’t fall on American companies hands like Microsoft, EA etc. But what can be a good candidate for obtaining this?

    • Warboss Aohd

      i might regret sayin’ dis but……..Blizzard?

  • Azoz

    Nooooooooo.

  • Eclipse

    Index Holdings has done such an excellent job with how they’ve handled the SMT/Megami Ibunroku series, so this news is quite saddening to hear.

    Atlus are my most favorite game developers and they’re also the reason why I love RPGs so much, so I really hope that they’ll be okay from this.

  • Hakimur Rashid

    Please God don’t let ATLUS be Acquired by some American company!

  • Hating Ass Nigga

    Companies that should never get ahold of Atlus

    Microsoft-No Explanation needed
    EA-Above Reason
    Compile Hearts-well,no offense but CH sucks donkey balls
    Gust-Same as compile hearts
    TecmoKoei-Shin megami warriors would be cool but that’s pretty much it, these guys don’t really have any original ideas.
    Capcom-Trying to hard to westernize all their Ip’s,no thanks.
    Square-Maybe,just maybe if enix broke away from square and started their own company it could work,otherwise no.Current Square is a joke and they can’t even localize their own damn games.

    • http://www.senran-international.boards.net/ TwinTails

      Compile Hearts is owned by Idea Factory.

      • Hating Ass Nigga

        Is that so?Well,they both suck anyway.

    • Warboss Aohd

      wot about NIS, Blizzard, Double Fine, Nintendo, Sony, Acitivsion, Konami, etc

      • Hating Ass Nigga

        Lets See….
        Nis-I honestly don’t know about this one,can’t say if it’s good or bad

        Blizzard-LOL no

        Double Fine-Sounds strangely western soooo I’m going to have to say no

        Nintendo-I could live with this,I could Imagine alot of folks would be pissed that Persona 5 would probably be on the Wii-u

        Sony-As much of a Playstation fanboy as I am I gotta Say no,Sony really doesn’t care much about rpgs or niche titles anymore(Legends of Dragoon 2,New Leagaia game anyone?)
        Activision-See Blizzard

        Konami-Nope,If it’s not Metal gear it gets thrown on the backburner for this company,another company that is embracing too much western gaming habits.

        • Warboss Aohd

          “Sounds Strangely Western, so no”

          Seriously?
          If Zeboyd, a Western Company, can make JRPGs, Damn good ones, Then that is not a valid argument.

    • Kurenai Miku

      How would Gust own Atlus, when Gust is already part of Tecmo-Koei?

    • Gustavo Rosario

      Namco bandai?

    • epy

      For the nth time: Do NOT compare GUST with Compile Hearts. The only people that would say that are people who never played GUST games but have that “it looks like anime so it sucks” mindset. You’re embarrassing yourself.

      • Hating Ass Nigga

        I’ll compare them whenever I want,The quality of Gust’s games severely dropped the minute they starting making games for the ps3,If anyone is embarrassing themselves it’s definitely you.

        Just for shits and giggles, would you like to compare the Ps2 Atlier games to the Ps3 ones?

  • ギャビン

    No wonder Persona 5 skipped a generation.

  • new_tradition

    SMT and Persona are the main series from Atlus I care about. Rather than Atlus as a whole, perhaps IPs will be divied up. SMT taken in by Nintendo and Persona embraced by Sony makes not terrible sense to me, and I wouldn’t be against it to be honest.

    Still kind of a sucky situation :/

  • LordKaiser

    I was thinking about Atlus going independent like Level-5 Etc.

  • ddsfan2

    Very troubling news. I can’t think of any company that would be good fit for them either — none of the platform holders are a good choice, Square Enix wouldn’t do much with them, and most other companies are too small to acquire Index.

  • LastBoss

    Namco-Bandai or Square Enix for me. If a bigger company bought them, I’d pick Sony but still allow them to publish as a 3rd Party company.

  • McPoo

    Forgive my ignorance, but what have Atlus done that’s noteworthy outside of Japan and a few niche groups across the rest of the world?

    I don’t doubt the quality of their games, I just don’t know much about them beyond them making niche RPG’s.

  • artemisthemp

    I really hope Atlus ain’t closing, since that would mean no more Persona games.