Wednesday 20 February 2013

News roundup: Sengoku Basara Ichiban Kuji rumours, Sony press event

This post is entirely made up of rumours because actual news has been rather rare lately.

There was a burst of excitement on Twitter the other day when it was discovered that there's a survey on the Ichiban Kuji website which hints at a future Sengoku Basara tie-in. Ichiban Kuji is a national prize lottery which runs in Japan; it's not unlike a raffle. Participants must visit a shop (usually, but not always, one of a particular chain of convenience stores) and purchase a ticket. They're then allowed to draw a prize token from a box. In most cases, you get to take it home with you immediately. Obviously, the more expensive prizes are quite rare and most people will just win something small and cheap. Some of the rare prizes can go for outrageous prices later on, especially if it's a popular series and the tickets sell out quickly.

There are some exceptions, as you can receive serial numbers to enter draws for extra, extremely rare prizes as well once you've participated. It's surprisingly complicated. The instant gratification and ability to see the prizes on the shelves before you buy helps make it a fun way to spend a spare ¥500.

Anyway, one of the gimmicks of Ichiban Kuji is that they regularly cycle through different themes for their draws; one month it might be Fate/Zero, and another it might be Ika Musume. I can't see the survey myself as a Japanese mobile phone email address is required to sign up to the Ichiban Kuji Club so I just have to trust the Japanese rumours. If they're asking fans for feedback on Sengoku Basara items it seems a safe bet that the series will make an appearance in a lottery soon!

It's a shame that participation overseas isn't possible. I'll be relying on the used goods market to grab any of the prizes which catch my eye...

The other piece of major news at the moment is, of course, tonight's Sony press event. It's rumoured to be announcing the Playstation 4 (at last), and one of the many conspiracy theories about the lack of a new Sengoku Basara game announcement has been that Capcom is waiting for Sony to break their silence first. I noticed that series producer KobaP flew to the US yesterday, though given the setting it's probably much more likely he's either there to watch or support a different Capcom title with more western appeal than spring a new Sengoku Basara on a pack of bemused American journalists. Still, I'll be following the live news from the event tonight closely just in case.

I'm quite curious about the PS4 as well, of course. It's just that all of my console purchases are driven by wanting to buy a new game rather than the hardware on its own, so knowing the price and specification isn't anywhere near as exciting as stalking Capcom staff for clues about new titles!

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