HTC announced it’s partnering with Bandai Namco Pictures, the animation studio and production company, to ostensibly bring a number of its properties to Viveport, HTC’s VR app store and subscription service.

It’s not clear in what capacity Bandai Namco’s anime will arrive on Viveport, however the company says its going to roll out “new immersive animations and virtual social interactions” targeted at both hardcore gamers and causal users in the next few months.

Bandai Namco Pictures is known for producing a large portfolio of properties including Aikatsu!, Battle Spirits, Tiger & Bunny, Gintama, and Sergeant Keroro.

The companies bill the partnership as a way for HTC to expand its intellectual property portfolio, while broadening Bandai Namco Pictures’ reach into VR.

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President of Viveport Joseph Lin says “anime content”—no specifics here—will be available on Viveport.

Ozaki Masayuki, president and CEO of Bandai Namco Pictures, says the deal will allow them to “create an environment where fans can enjoy experiences together, transcending physical limitations, as if they were diving directly into the world of our creations from anywhere in the world.”

Again, it’s not exactly clear what the companies have lined up, however it seems like it could be anything from a social platform with livestreaming 2D anime, bespoke anime-inspired VR games, and possibly also VR versions of card games Aikatsu! or Battle Spirits.

The partnership is said to initially focus on “the integration of animation content, development and distribution resources from both companies, ongoing collaborations on new animation and IP development, and robust exploration of new business opportunities.”

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  • Thoroughly enjoyed Bandai Namco’s Mario kart VR. Great to see more content coming to PCVR headsets

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  • Yoku

    I never expected this to happen. I was rather dissapointed with both Quest 2 game announcments last fall and Oculus Game Showcase last week, because the greatest game for VR that just should be announced was never actually announced (and if it will happen – it will be a huge system seller for any platform). And IP for that title belongs to Bandai Namco. I really thought that Oculus will purchase the license for it or just give money to Bamco to develop this title for them – and release it on November next year with the release of Quest 3/2 Pro/etc, just to be canonical. Also there is Sony with their japanese roots and PSVR2 release (maybe) next year too – they also could afford something like that. But HTC? Hell no. I really hope that it won’t go further than just streaming anime in VR, because Bamco don’t like to spend money on developing anime-related games (but, of course, likes to get as much money as they can with no efforts), and HTC can’t really pay for it too, so the final result will be almost 100% awful.

    • Anonymous

      What are you talking about? Bandai Namco together with Kadokawa and Aniplex (part of Sony Music) probably releases (or publishes) the majority of all anime games.

      And what good is just steaming anime in VR? There is already Amazon Prime and Netflix VR for that matter. if you wanted to say you don’t want to see HTC getting exclusive rights to anime VR games creating another walled-garden then it’s much more understandable, but the way you structured your comment made me hesistant to draw that implication.

  • We need a Sword Art Online from Bandai Namco!

    • Anonymous

      It’s embarrassing that they haven’t released any SAO related VR games after all these years, other than some poorly conceived Tech Demoes watching Asuna sleeping (and do absolutely nothing) or pathetic smartphone VR app with some crude dialogues with Asuna.