Following the devastating earthquake in Japan in March, some Japanese games set to be released in that time frame containing sensitive content were put on hiatus (or canceled altogether, like Irem’s Zettai Zetsumei Toshi (Disaster Report in the West) 4). The Sega title Ryu ga Gotoku (Yakuza) Of the End was one of the games delayed.
Of the End was originally set to release just days after the earthquake occurred, and by the time Sega issued the delay, copies of the game had already been sent to many retailers. Sega made the costly decision to have the games returned to them, for release at a later date.
The game was eventually released in June, with proceeds going to the Red Cross and a “Ganbarou Nippon!” (Let’s go Japan!) sticker on the case. The good news is that the game sold an impressive (for PS3) 400,000 copies, making Sega the most successful publisher in Japan last month.
So the moral of this story is not to be interpreted as “do the right thing, even if it’s annoying, because it’ll pay off in the end.” We all know that this isn’t always the way things work. No, I’d say the morals are: do the right thing because it’s the right thing, Sega rules, and I really hope that Of the End gets a Western release, because it looks amazing!