News of Disgaea smartphone RPG reveals NIS is in financial hot water; not able to pay employees.

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
28,714
NIS is out of money? I guess all those bombs caught up to them, but I though NISA was doing well
 

Strings

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,647
NIS is in that bad of a shape? Wasn't Digaea 5 pretty succesful?

Heart goes out to all their employees.
They release new JP games at a pretty ridiculous clip, and all of them have been selling terribly (from not charting to ~3000 copies) for years. I figured the American branch was keeping them profitable or something.

EDIT: Including ports, they released 12 games in 2016, 13 in 2017, and 15 in 2018. I think wiki is missing a couple too.
 
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Oct 26, 2017
7,296
Oh shit, I hope this they'll pull through this. :( Sounds like they bet it ALL on Disgaea RPG for who the hell knows what reason. Unless it was a do or die situation where they were in dire straits but we didn't know?
 

kikuchiyo

Member
Nov 9, 2017
335
I’ve been onboard since the original Disgaea and it’s been clear for a long time they’ve been emphasizing quantity rather than quality. If they’re really in financial trouble it’s not a huge surprise.
 

NeonZ

Member
Oct 28, 2017
5,494
Oh shit, I hope this they'll pull through this. :( Sounds like they bet it ALL on Disgaea RPG for who the hell knows what reason. Unless it was a do or die situation where they were in dire straits but we didn't know?
Considering how it's using reused assets, it's more like they just don't have many resources at all. They tried to launch various original franchises and just had failure after failure. Disgaea was kind of saved by Western sales, but also had very weak sales in Japan lately, which is probably why they wanted a new franchise.
 
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Oct 26, 2017
7,296
I would hope NISA can either help them or if the worst happens, that they just split and work as things were or something. If NIS were to shutdown, where would that put Disgaea and whatnot? Someone would have to buy the IPs or maybe Niikawa can just form a successor with the IPs in hand?
 

Castile

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Banned
Dec 1, 2017
3,997
Wait, wasn't Sony company Forward Works responsible in making the game, and not NIS, or am I remembering things wrong.
 

Strings

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,647
Destiny Connect, their last original game, opened to less than 2.7k copies (36th in terms of first week sales, with only the Switch version charting). Other new IPs performed similarly.
 

Flon

Member
Oct 27, 2017
660
I really hope they manage to get through this. I wish all employees the best.

I missed out on news about Disgaea RPG... Looking it up, it's unfortunate just how troubled it was.
 

Mochi

Avenger
Oct 25, 2017
883
Seattle
Regardless of why this is happening it's very sad. I loved the first Disgaea and they have put out some other decent games in the past few years. I hope they can stay afloat, if they can't, best of luck to their talented employees.
 

Terraforce

The Fallen
Oct 27, 2017
10,021
Jeez this really blows. Really liked NIS, and people being out of jobs is terrible too of course. If this kind of news ever hits Level 5 idk what I would even do.
 

MegaXZero

Member
Jun 21, 2018
3,387
Damn that mobile game was a disaster. I do wonder what NISA will do since they clearly were the breadwinners for a long while.
 

Strings

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,647
Incredibly low effort company, man. It was going to catch up to them.
I don't think I'd go that far. Even if I don't really like any of the new IPs they've put out outside of Coven and The Labyrinth of Refrain (Rose in the Twilight games seem to have a decent reputation too), they've definitely been trying really hard to land on something new.
 
Oct 26, 2017
7,296
I don't think I'd go that far. Even if I don't really like any of the new IPs they've put out aside of Coven and The Labyrinth of Refrain (Rose in the Twilight games seem to have a decent reputation too), they've definitely been trying really hard to land on something new.
Feels like Galleria's delay plus the (at least initial) lack of a Switch version was just plain done very poorly. Honestly if they played that right it could pull them out of this jam.

Disgaea 6 also should've been made by now. It doesn't have to be yearly, but clearly folks want it.
 

ILikeFeet

Member
Oct 25, 2017
28,714
I don't think I'd go that far. Even if I don't really like any of the new IPs they've put out aside of Coven and The Labyrinth of Refrain (Rose in the Twilight games seem to have a decent reputation too), they've definitely been trying really hard to land on something new.
I'd say their output hasn't been inspiring. they felt like they were indie games in budget. they needed to spend some more to make their games look more bombastic if they wanted to cast a wider net. something they only did with Destiny Connect (which bombed and had poor word of mouth apparently) and Disgaea. Labyrinth of Refrain did well but the sequel got delayed, so...
 

Strings

Member
Oct 27, 2017
10,647
Feels like Galleria's delay plus the (at least initial) lack of a Switch version was just plain done very poorly. Honestly if they played that right it could pull them out of this jam.

Disgaea 6 also should've been made by now. It doesn't have to be yearly, but clearly folks want it.
The problem is that the main Disgaea team is the Coven team. So while that game sold a lot better than their other new IPs, I'd imagine the opportunity cost was still pretty big.
I'd say their output hasn't been inspiring. they felt like they were indie games in budget. they needed to spend some more to make their games look more bombastic if they wanted to cast a wider net. something they only did with Destiny Connect (which bombed and had poor word of mouth apparently) and Disgaea. Labyrinth of Refrain did well but the sequel got delayed, so...
Exile Election and Shin Hayarigami had pretty decent production values for their particular genre, but both of those under-performed too. I agree with you when it comes to Penny Punching Princess, The Princess Guide, The Longest 5 Minutes (though that one wasn't so bad) etc, but I don't think making those games better looking would have saved them.
 
Oct 26, 2017
7,296
NIS is guilty of just making some very low budget and not all that interesting stuff as of late IMO. They're coolest work is stuff that tries to really work within the limitations like Liar Princess and such, but also stuff like Ys 8 on Switch and when NISA works on a bigger game (like Ys 8 again and SNK Heroines).

I don't know. They needed a legit breakout hit. Disgaea 5 Complete must've been a godsend for them. The constant bombas obviously hurt them a shit ton also.
 

Curler

Member
Oct 26, 2017
5,920
I'm guessing NISA will spin off into a separate entity. but without games from the mothership to publish, that will really hurt their output
Yeah it's weird when the western branch carrying them. Disgaea 5 bombed in Japan, but succeeded in the west. All these new IPs are nice to see, but no real runaway hits.

Hope NISA still somehow stays afloat, especially simnce they take care of so many publishers to localize from, and are the hub for collector editions in the store.
 

Tohsaka

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Nov 17, 2017
2,977

Curler

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Oct 26, 2017
5,920
If they ARE banking on the west's success to carry them, I do hope we will get some kinda chance at getting some of their VNs localized :x
 

AwShucks

Member
Oct 27, 2017
836
Well this would be a bummer. I used to love almost every NIS release and they are responsible for some of my favorite games, from Disgaea to ZHP to Prinny to Phantom Brave to Disgaea 4 etc. Their output recently hasn't grabbed me as much unfortunately but I'd be sad to never play a new NIS again.
 

AniHawk

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,506
NIS is in that bad of a shape? Wasn't Digaea 5 pretty succesful?

Heart goes out to all their employees.
disgaea 5 was really successful - did about 500k in the us/eu. the game also first released about 4 years ago. nis hasn't produced something similar since.

AniHawk does mean that NISA is fucked??
not sure. they haven't really been relying on nis's output to remain profitable. i haven't looked to see if nis had reported fy18's financials, but as of fy17 it seemed they stopped reporting nisa and other subsidiary earnings separately - and that might be due to nisa earning a lot or it could be the others earning very low. nisa was/is really profitable, and that's largely on stuff outside disgaea, although every now and again an nis title can find an audience (refrain, liar princess). if this is a big problem then they might downsize and focus on fan-favorites.

i didn't know that the japanese branch was in such a tight spot. they've been spinning their wheels for a really long time, but to get to this level with no plan to get out of it is kind of crazy. compile heart had the good sense to at least run neptunia into the ground, but nis never leveraged its major properties properly and just kept doing weird random stuff.
 

TimeFire

Avenger
Nov 26, 2017
6,740
Brazil
disgaea 5 was really successful - did about 500k in the us/eu. the game also first released about 4 years ago. nis hasn't produced something similar since.
Huh. I completely forgot D5 is so old. D5 Complete is always popping up in the news so it's always pretty fresh in my mind. Let's hope NIS can turn this around.
 
OP
OP
Sagadego17

Sagadego17

Member
Oct 25, 2017
5,350
disgaea 5 was really successful - did about 500k in the us/eu. the game also first released about 4 years ago. nis hasn't produced something similar since.



not sure. they haven't really been relying on nis's output to remain profitable. i haven't looked to see if nis had reported fy18's financials, but as of fy17 it seemed they stopped reporting nisa and other subsidiary earnings separately - and that might be due to nisa earning a lot or it could be the others earning very low. nisa was/is really profitable, and that's largely on stuff outside disgaea, although every now and again an nis title can find an audience (refrain, liar princess). if this is a big problem then they might downsize and focus on fan-favorites.

i didn't know that the japanese branch was in such a tight spot. they've been spinning their wheels for a really long time, but to get to this level with no plan to get out of it is kind of crazy. compile heart had the good sense to at least run neptunia into the ground, but nis never leveraged its major properties properly and just kept doing weird random stuff.
i just hope NISA stays around. they have so many games i want.
 

Hexa

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,187
Isn't the Disgaea smartphone game co-developed with Forwardworks? Have they had any successes? Sony should probably leave smartphone games to Aniplex.

I hope NISA survives. They're not the best but there are a lot of games no one else would localize.
 

Zonar

The Fallen
Oct 25, 2017
397
Arizona, USA
Everybody keeps talking about the Disgaea RPG and the sad information. Where's the information? Can somebody post a link, a image or something?
 

AniHawk

Member
Oct 25, 2017
3,506
Feels like Galleria's delay plus the (at least initial) lack of a Switch version was just plain done very poorly. Honestly if they played that right it could pull them out of this jam.

Disgaea 6 also should've been made by now. It doesn't have to be yearly, but clearly folks want it.
at this point, disgaea 6 should be out on ps5. if sony launches ps5 like they did with ps4, that means a 2021 release. that would put it out six years after disgaea 5 launched. in the six years before disgaea 5 you had disgaea infinite, disgaea 4, disgaea d2, prinny 2, and ports of disgaea 2, 3, and 4 to psp/vita. they really dropped the ball on this franchise from a planning aspect.
 

Mendinso

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,911
Isn't the Disgaea smartphone game co-developed with Forwardworks? Have they had any successes?
Well, uh... I'm not sure if you're aware, the game launched with so many problems, it was pulled and delayed indefinitely, until they can resolve issues. They initially blamed the issues on foreigners and IP blocked, but the issues continued to persist.

Either way, NIS would've still payed money into the project. With the launch being a massive failure, this had to hurt NIS and other parties involved, badly.
 

Zen Hero

Member
Oct 25, 2017
2,870
I feel like the thread title is underselling the situation a bit? At least in my mind the bigger story here is NIS being in such a bad state, rather than the smartphone game.

That's really sad to hear, anyway. It always seemed like NIS was trying pretty hard, so it's disappointing to see them like this. Though I never really found any of their games appealing and never bought any, so I guess I'm a part of the problem :/
 
Oct 26, 2017
7,296
AniHawk On Switch, were Disgaea 5 Complete and Ys 8 their biggest successes in the west? Any others of note? What are your suggestions other than them relying on fan favs?
 

Mendinso

Member
Oct 25, 2017
1,911
that area is fairly competitive. you'd see spike chunsoft, xseed, and aksys pick up the slack. atlus and idea factory wouldn't though because they only focus on their own games.
Atlus has admittedly picked up third party titles from time to time, but they were always very selective about it.