Manga Publisher VIZ Media Debuts First Original Game From New Indie Program

VIZ
(Photo: The World Next Door)

If you're a fan of either manga or anime, chances are you've heard of the renowned VIZ Media. For those that like to dabble in the video game world, they have just made an exciting announcement regarding a partnership with Portland studio Rose City Games to kickstart a new indie studio. Upon the announcement, they also revealed that they are working on their very first original game: The World Next Door.

The game is the first of three, and the team couldn't wait to share the good news! Here's what the official announcement says about what's next for the big project:

"The first title to be published by VIZ Media will be the supernatural action/adventure game, The World Next Door, developed by Rose City Games and featuring character designs by illustrator Lord Gris.

"It's no secret that anime and manga fans love video games," says Brad Woods, Chief Marketing Officer, VIZ Media. "We're excited to be able to bring an entirely new offering to our audience. VIZ Media has always been fan-first, and the team at Rose City is the perfect fit for developing games that our audience will love."

"We're very excited to collaborate with VIZ Media and the amazing creators in our indie game communities," say Will Lewis and Corey Warning, Co-Directors and Co-Founders of Rose City Games. "The ability to pursue multiple original titles as independent developers is huge for us, and this partnership presents the potential to expand the worlds we're creating beyond games."

The World Next Door is a narrative-driven game that centers around Jun, a rebellious teen girl trapped in a parallel world inhabited by magical creatures. Inspired by the emotional storytelling and thrilling action of both anime and indie games, players can expect to meet and develop friendships with an eclectic cast of characters while uncovering the mysteries hidden within this world."

The lead illustrator, 'Lord_Gris," couldn't wait to spread the word either:

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Hey guys! (Sorry if you saw this earlier, had to reupload!) I'm excited I can finally share this with you! If you remember my post from a little while ago or if you watch my story you'll know I'm doing character art on a video game, but I haven't been able to talk about it. It's all been very top secret hush hush, but as of today the cat is out of the bag! The game I'm working on is called The world Next Door and it's being made for @vizmedia , you may or may not recognize that name but you probably know the stuff they are in charge of licencing, things like pokemon, sailor moon, one punch man etc. Even though they licence media that comes over from Japan they don't own any original content made by them, until this game that is! It's an honor (and kind of terrifying) to be part of this big step for them (fingers crossed I don't mess this up). So here's what I can tell you about this game, it's a narrative driven game about our main character Jun who gets trapped in a parallel world full of strange creatures. Some of the characters featured here are Liza who is a floaty demon thing, and horace who is a cat litch thing? Not sure we really have specific races for these guys at the moment, but it's been fun designing them. There's a huge cast of characters I've been in charge of making and I can't wait to introduce them to you over the next couple months. Ill be excited to see who your favorite is :3 Anyway this is a really exciting thing for me that I hope some of you are excited about a little bit too! Let me know what you think! #gamedev #conceptart #indiegames #anime #vizmedia

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This is going to be huge for the company, and the art style looks incredibly promising! No word yet on an anticipated release window, but it's looking good so far! We can't wait to see the project in full bloom.