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.
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.”