December 31, 2000 / by Anime News Services / Archived News / No Comments

Anime News Service – December 23-31 Anime News

held in Akihabara Sunday, December 17th. The event reportedly drew12-31-00—- Animefringe Top 25 Sites

From the news release:

The results of Animefringe’s poll for The Top 25 Must-Visit Anime Websites are now available in the latest issue of Animefringe: Online Anime Magazine. Find out what the sites are that every otaku should have book-marked and learn why they are so cool. Also, full results of the poll are available at the end of the article. But, remember the Top 25 is just one part of our spectacular One Year Anniversary issue!
Anime Fringe

12-31-00—- New CPM Press

Central Park Media’s latest press releases for March can be viewed here.

12-31-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

Higher Voltage is reporting that During the recently wrapped Shoeshia Jump Festival, Capcom announced the development of a the latest Jojo’s game based on the 5th chapter of the whole Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure epic manga.

12-31-00—- New Year’s Anime Marathon

Excerpted from DVD Animania:

This weekend’s (12/30) Saturday Anime lineups: (All Times Eastern Standard Time)
Tekken: The Motion Picture – 07:40 AM Encore Action Channel
Macross II: Lover’s Again – 10:45 AM Encore Action Channel
Tekken: The Motion Picture – 05:00 PM Encore Action Channel
This weekend’s (12/31) Sunday / New Year’s Eve Anime lineups: (All Times Eastern Standard Time)
Macross II: Lover’s Again – 12:00 AM Encore Action Channel
Darkside Blues – 07:20 AM Encore Action Channel
Darkside Blues – 05:00 PM Encore Action Channel
This weekend’s (1/1) Monday / New Year’s Day Anime lineups: (All Times Eastern Standard Time)
Darkside Blues – 07:20 AM Encore Action Channel
Patlabor: The Mobile Police – 06:30 AM Encore Action Channel
Shadow Skill: Part 1 – 08:10 AM Encore Action Channel
Shadow Skill: Part 2 – 09:00 AM Encore Action Channel
Sol Bianca – 10:15 AM Encore Action Channel
DNA Sights 999.9 – 11:15 AM Encore Action Channel
Ghost In The Shell – 12:05 PM Encore Action Channel
Patlabor 2: The Movie – 01:30 PM Encore Action Channel
Patlabor: The Mobile Police – 03:20 PM Encore Action Channel
Shadow Skill: Part 1 – 05:00 PM Encore Action Channel
Shadow Skill: Part 2 – 05:50 PM Encore Action Channel
DNA Sights 999.9 – 07:10 PM Encore Action Channel
Ghost In The Shell – 08:00 PM Encore Action Channel
Psycho Diver – 09:20 PM Encore Action Channel
Patlabor 2: The Movie – 10:10 PM Encore Action Channel

12-31-00—- Project A-Kon Announcment

Excerpted from the latest circulating A-kon E-flyer:

Guests so far include (there will be more, but Japanese guests are currently celebrating their holidays and will not get back with us until mid January.):

TIFFANY GRANT – Voice actress, “Evangelion”, “Gunsmith Cats” and much more!

NEWTEK – the CGI Company that handles computer animation programs such as LightWave will do demos of various programs for us during the weekend.

STEVE BENNETT – Animator for Urusei Yatsura, Final Yamato, and many other shows

STUDIO IRONCAT – We don’t know which artists will attend yet, but we’ll let you know.

BEN DUNN – Head of Antarctic Press

ANTARCTIC PRESS – will be represented by the likes of: JOE WELTJENS, DOUG DLIN, TED NOMURA, and more!

ELIN WINKLER – President, Radio Comix, has her own comic line!

RADIO COMIX will be represented by names such as: PAT DUKE, DEAN HSIEH, WILL ALLISON, BRANDON GRAHAM, PAUL WAY, EDDIE PERKINS, DIANA SPRINKLE and more!

VALKYRIE GAMES – Stellar Horizons game developer

RODNEY CASTON – host of www.fansubs.net for fan subtitlers

LEE W MADISON – Artist responsible for all the cool Badge Art A-Kon has had for the last 11 years, as well as Staff T-Shirt designs.

NEWTON EWELL – Game design artist, fine art and fine anime illustrator, mech designer, and all around swell guy. (we haven’t actually ASKED him yet, but it wouldn’t be an A-Kon without him!)

SOME FEATURES So Far:

* Anime cel painting workshops conducted by animator Steve Bennett ($5 materials fee-pay at the door-gets you paints, acetate, brushes, all that you need to create your own cel!)
* Computer Animation demos & classes with NewTek!
* ‘AniName That Tune’ – how fast can you identify your fav. Tunes?
* ‘Anime Match Game’ – was great fun last year, is back again!
* ‘Japanimayhem’ – the rousing tongue-in-cheek look at the anime world in a ‘killer’ card game
* Sunday Banquet With The Stars & A-Kon anime awards ceremony! 5th Annual!
* Cram packed dealers room-149 tables crammed with stuff!
* 3 24-hr Video theaters, and a couple side theaters
* CLUB J-POP – hear the latest in Japanese music hosted by Radio Wasabi (called CLUB WASABI for this year’s Kon!)
* Parties, fellowship, fans, etc.
* Live Sushi Demo – see how that fish is really cut up! And eat the samples! Seminar conducted by Tokyo One Japanese Restaurant chefs.
* Martial Arts Stage Fighting Demo – see actual Hollywood actors conduct seminars on how to do real stage fighting, with weapons and hand-to-hand – make your cosplay presentations look REAL!
* Cosplay makeup demo- learn how to make prosthetics and apply them properly to bring your characters to life – hosted by an actual Hollywood makeup artist and an actor who has been every alien in the book! Watch an actual anime character come to life in 3-D on a real human body (looks lots different than 2-D on paper!)
* Komik Market – THE place to find cool new clubs, small press comics, personalized artwork, etc.
* Model Contest (handled by AVD)- bring your entries!
* Live Action Games (Animania, Maximum Comics’ games, Night of the Yakuza, Vampire, etc. )
* 24 hr. RPG and CCG Gaming
* Battletech (by Mechwarriors Guild)
* Fan Video Contest
* Opening Ceremony with cool stuff
* FREE PRIZE PACK for pre-registered folks (all kinds of goodies)
* Costume Contest on Saturday Night
* DANCE on Saturday night by RFO
* KARAOKE on Friday Night!
* Prizes, Giveaways galore!
* Panels, discussions with guests, industry professionals, etc.
* Displays from anime companies
* KAOS Room – 24 hr. Networked, Computerized Gaming room
* Commemorative T-shirt (designer TBA)
* Panel topics including Fan Fiction, Internet, Fan Subbers, Translating, New Releases, Voice Acting class, CGI demos, etc.
* Art Show & Auction -over 18,000 square feet!
* Fan Sponsored Video Room
* More as we get it confirmed! (there is a possibility of a live J-Pop band performance at this year’s con – more on that as it is developed.)

——————–
CHILDREN’S PROGRAMMING:

In response to the high number of children showing up these days, we’ve added this special place for the littles to have fun, see some video, and play (and to allow their parents to play too!). Potty-trained up to age 8 will be handled in this place, juice/snacks provided, they will do crafts, etc. There will be 2 4-hr. sessions each day, and a child may be signed up for only one session per day. If there is call for it, we may have a shift in the evening as well. Details will be ironed out and posted as available. There is no charge for this service, but donations will be welcome, as will snacks, toys or video lent to the room for the kids to play with, etc. We apologize for the confusion in last year’s programming of this room. We have rectified the situation.

More detail, including prices, hotle bookings and online ticket purchases at A-Kon’s website : http://www.a-kon.com or e-mail info@a-kon.com

12-30-00—- Pokemon Special

A Pokemon special is scheduled to be broadcast in Japan on TV Tokyo tonight. Running 65+ minutes the special will focus on Mewtwo. Guest seiyuu include Mitsuishi Kotono and Hisakawa Aya. After the episode, there is a planned clip about the new summer Pokemon movie (to open in Japan 07-07-01). Interviews with voice actors Matsumoto Rica, Yamadera Kouichi are included.

12-30-00—- DVD Market to Reach 300 Billion Yen In 2003

Japan Visual Software Association announced projection of the Japanese DVD market on December 7. It is predicted that the DVD software market will reach 100 billion yen in 2000 and up to 300 billion yen in 2003. DVD sales are expected to exceed video software sales in 2001 and become the leader in the software market.

Source: Nikkei Sangyo Newspaper, December 8, 2000

Source: Neptune Media

12-30-00—- Spanish Anime Broadcast News

Telemundo (2) TV station is right now on the top of anime presentation. Right now they air Ruroni Kenshin Monday – Friday 6 am Dragon Ball Z M – F 3pm Pocket Monsters “Pokemon” 3:30 pm and Digimon 3:30 pm T & Th On weekends Ranma 1/2 8:30 am Sundays Slam Dunk 9:30am Topo Gigio 8:00 am On the oder hand Teleonce (11) presents Tico and Nanami 7 am.

Source: Anihabara

12-30-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

– Sony has released a new playable demo of their highly anticipated PS2 racing game Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec in Japan, the playable demo contains 3 playable cars (NSX, Ford Mustang SVT Cobra R and Honda S2000) and 1 race course (Trial Mountain). Many players who have test played the game pointed out that the quality of the game has been significantly improved from GT1 and GT2, almost every aspect of the game (cars, background, controls, special effects) are better than expected. The game will only support Dual Shock 2 and Dual Shock 2 compatible joysticks and racing wheels, because the game correspond to the analog features of all the buttons. Gran Turismo 3 A-Spec is scheduled for release in Japan on February 15. ANS was able to test the new GT3 demo on several occasions in Japan over past 2 weeks, look for exclusive images and review here shortly.

The US version of Sega’s Dreamcast online RPG Phantasy Star Online will be coming out on February 6, the online server will be open on the same date, and Sega of America is not planning to charge for the PSO online battle services.

Capcom will release Street Fighter Zero 3 for Matching Service in Japan on February 8, 2001, for 3800 yen. This version will have an enhanced Dramatic Battle Mode, in which you can freely select any characters for the 2 VS 1 battle. During the network battles, you can also send instant messages to the opponent, you can send instant messages by pressing direction button and Start together, such as “It will be tricky”, “Victory!”, “Hey” and so on.

Shoeisha will release a Limited Edition of their Dreamcast 3D action shooting game Macross M3 on February 22, for 6800 yen, which includes an original illustration box, and one of the 3 main character lamination card. You can also enter a lucky draw to win one of the following items: Macross VF-1S Garage Kit (Macross Prize, One); Complete Transformation VF-11B Sanda Bolt Yamato Model (Max Prize, 50); and VF-1A,VF-1J & VF-1S plastic toy model kit (Miria Prize,150); Macross M3 CD (Memorial Prize, 100). The winners will be announced in the Dreamcast magazine and the D-Direct / Shoeisha homepage on March 30, 2001.

SNK has announced yet another new title for the system, it is a stripping mahjong called Super Real Mahjong from Seta. SNK said “NeoGeo Pocket development has not been finished! We promise you providing high quality entertainment, and satisfaction! There is every reason to do so …”

Source: The Magic Box

12-30-00—- No Godzilla In 2001

According to Cinescape Word has it that Toho has no plans to release and expected new Godzilla film for 2001. According to Monster Zero, a third film in this latest Godzilla movie series was not a part of the studio’s 2001 line up of films.

It should be noted that this could be good news, supporting previous word that Toho was planning on taking more time in crafting the third film, which may be hitting screens in Japan in spring 2002.

12-29-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

Bandai released new details on their latest PlayStation 2 Gundam game – Mobile Suit Gundam: Zeonic Front, a new real time strategic simulation game that takes place in the Zion army force. In this game you are able to experience the world in the aspect from the Zion army, you play as a soldier of the Zion army, and enter the battlefield with your own movable unit, fight and pulls out the war for one year. In the battlefield, the performance of the units are affected by geographical features and the weather. Mobile Suit Gundam: Zeonic Front is scheduled for release in Japan in summer 2001.

Capcom will release the 3rd chapter of the Dreamcast bi-monthly RPG El Dorado Gate Vol. 3 in Japan on February 2, for 2800 yen. This time the game will contain only two episodes (7th and 8th chapter), but the seventh chapter is a special long volume. The two stories in volume 3 are: Pamela – the person who succeeds Ogre’s soul, and Kanan’s second story, after she survived the death sentence, with the mystery power of the cursed mask.

Nec Interchannel announced they are porting the popular PC love adventure game Canvas: Motif Sepia Color to Dreamcast, the DC port will feature a new character and scenario, the game will be released on April 5, 2001. Other than Canvas, the popular Saturn and Gameboy Color love adventure game Pia Carrot is also coming to Dreamcast, Nec Interchannel will release Welcome to Pia Carrot 2.5 for Dreamcast in Japan next spring.

Source: The Magic Box

Figures.com reports that Gamepen has contacted Sega’s Public Relations Staff about the release for the DreamCast Broadhand Adapter(Modem). Sega responded stating “It Will Be Available On January 9th, 2001.”, but they also mentioned that you could only purchase the product from the official Sega site until March of 2001, when they will ship the product to retail stores to sell.

12-29-00—- Japanese Film Crew At McFarlane Collection

Spawn.com reports that Recently, a crew from Japan’s NHK TV completed a series of visits with the McFarlane Collection for a show called The Greatest Auctions and the Treasures of the World. After a couple logistical difficulties were ironed out, the crew met up with the Collection during a tour stop in Austin, Texas. They filmed the exhibit itself, several of the balls individually (particularly McGwire’s No. 70 ball, as you might well imagine) and also fans viewing the exhibit. The crew met with Todd himself in Los Angeles and got an interview to go along with all the baseball footage. The program is a special two-hour series finale set to air in a “high vision” format to Japanese satellite customers in February.

12-29-00—- UK Broadcast News

According to DVD Animania From the January issue of the SkyDigital Customer Magazine: “Gundam Wing starts on Mon 15 [January] on Cartoon Network [UK] at 5.30pm, and continues to air at that time on weekdays and at 11.30am and 9.30pm at the weekend.” From uk.media.animation.anime (confirmed by looking at Digiguide TV listings): “This may (or may not) be news to most people, but Fox Kids UK are showing Escaflowne at 8:55PM every day (including weekends) from Monday 8th January onwards.”

12-29-00—- DVD Bits

Anime On DVD is reporting on the first Saber Marionette J double disc set due out late next month. In addition to being a trilingual disc (English DD2.0, Japanese DD2.0, Spanish DD1.0 audio), it includes as extras for disc 1 Character Specs/Galleries and a Full-length Lime Musical Circuit DD5.1 music video. The music video will have English, romaji and Japanese subtitles! Sweet!

Also from AOD, According to a post on their forum, a customer service representitive at AnimEigo has mentioned that indicated the 2nd Urusei Yatsura box set (TV volumes 6-10) won’t be ready until March and not the tentative January release.

12-29-00—- Comike 59 Kicks Off

The 59th Winter Comike Event at Tokyo’s Big Site begins today and ANS is present among the hundreds of thousands of fans, Doujinshi volumes, various venues, etc.. Several dozen industry companies were promoting their latest products and we have a full report with exclusive images, interviews, insight, etc. in the works to be posted here very soon. Also look for a report on Comike 59 on Akadot.com.

12-29-00—- Fragrance Tale On PC

The PC version of ‘Fragrance Tale is scheduled to be released in Japan by TAKUYO Co. on January 19th, a Dreamcast version of the love adventure game is due out next spring. This will coincide with a drama CD release on February 7th at 3,600 Yen retail. The game for Win 98/Me will retail at 8800 Yen.

12-28-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

Sega has unveiled their Phantasy Star Online US website which includes environments of the planet Ragol, where the game takes place, and specific stats for upcoming game’s many character classes. A virtual community area for the game’s fans, is replete with message boards and an IRC channel. The site also offers the opportunity to enter a contest by answering some Phantasy Star trivia questions. Two winners will be flown to San Francisco in February to tour Sega headquarters before attending the PSO launch party. There they will get to be the first American gamers to go online with PSO, with famed developer and Sonic Team head Yuji Naka leading their party.

Source: The Gaming Intelligence Agency

12-28-00—- ASMIO Featured In Red And White Competition

Honda’s recently unveiled ASIMO robot will appear in this year’s famous NHK Red And White song battle.

12-28-00—- Bandai Visual Release News

New releases from Bandai Visual (Emotion) in Japan – February 25th

Ashita No Joe DVD-BOX 2 – running time is 575 minutes, each of the 4 discs is disc is one layer. Audio is in Dolby NR digital (stereo). Retail price is 29,800 Yen. Extras include a 52 page heavily illustrated color booklet.

Rose Of Vesailles DVD-BOX 2 has a listed running time of 500 minutes, each of the 4 discs in the set is single layer. Audio is Dolby NR digital (monaural). Retail price is 25,800, extras include a 52 page all color booklet page color booklet.

While the very recent 1st-3rd special release Gundam Movies continue to dominate most stores’ top 5 selling titles in Tokyo, already appearing in a few shops are DVD release flyers with images for the Gundam Movies F91 and Char’s Counter Attack. On March 25 both movies are due. Release details for Char’s Counter Attack are as follows: The disc has a running time of 120 minutes in Dolby NR digital (stereo). In dual layer, it will retail 6,000 Yen. Extras are booklet. F91 has a running time of 120 minutes in Dolby NR digital (stereo). Retail is 6000 Yen, Extra is a booklet. the market. Character of bosom oak such as “Fist of the Great Bear” and “Joe tomorrow” 1000 volume in space <“> (*ya*) though the typing software made ‚ð theme is popular. (*mat*)” became typing software in this December. The stage setting is space battleship <“> (*yama*) which drew the desperate fight with the white comet empire.

12-28-00—- Manhattan Anime Screening

Anime TV Along with Metro Anime (a Manhattan Anime Club) Will be showing anime on Jan. 6 2001 at MNN Studios the cable access Anime TV show is produced my. They will start at 12:30 PM and run programs for 3 hours including Love hina and Sakura Taisen TV. For more info visit either of the above sites.

12-27-00—- Macross Updates From Animeigo

Animeigo has updated it’s Macross section here, recapping the status of the various aspects of the rollout, production etc.. of the series. Also Current Signups as of today for the DVD set are 9063, current price is $250 U.S.

12-27-00—- Final Fantasy Movie Sequel News

Cinescape is reporting that there are are already plans for a sequel to the upcoming CGI Final Fantasy movie. According to Variety, the film’s director, Hironobu Sakaguchi, is planning on springing into production on a second film in the video game to feature film franchise just as soon as the movie wraps. The producer, Jun Aida, is estimating that given the hard R&D done to bring the first film to fruition, the second take on the completely computer generated science fiction franchise will take only two-thirds the time it took to make the first. The first film has taken four years and will be finished in time to hit theater screens in July, courtesy of Columbia. As the potential series progresses, there are no plans to draw directly from the computer/video games that inspired the films’ creations, instead to further develop the characters rather than just rely on the CG fireworks. In addition, Sakaguchi, revealed that in the process of creating Final Fantasy features, the goal of Square Pictures is to firmly establish the Japanese company as a premiere digital animation studio in Hollywood.

12-27-00—- Simultaneous Movie Release Worldwide On Horizon

American production companies have began developing a structure to distribute films simultaneously worldwide. For big-budget movies and hot movies, they intend to narrow the time difference between the US release and overseas release from 4 – 6 months to less than 1 month.

Several studios are already taking action. Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) released “Vertical Limit” on December 8 in the US on December 9 in Japan. “Charlie’s Angels” was released in 30 countries including Japan and Europe within 1 week after the US release. Universal Studio will release “Grinch” in 100 countries within 1 month after the US release. In the past, it took studios 4 – 6 months. This gave studios time to evaluate domestic box office results and formulate overseas release strategies. Studios expect costs will rise as much as 30% due to intensive amount of work required for a simultaneous release worldwide.

With the advent of new technology, overseas customers can order hot new home video releases prior to the film’s domestic release. This was a primary reason that the major U.S. studios supported the implementation of region coding on dvds. It remains to be seen if this will signal the end of region coding. Many foreign DVDs are being released with English subtitles. However, in many cases, only U.S. consumers with a “region free” DVD player are able to view these DVDs. Foreign movie fans can only hope that this will signal an end to region coding.

Another reason for modifying release schedules is that a great amount of information on new movies is flooding through movie companies’ homepages and other web sites. Bad word of mouth could devastate a film’s box office when released overseas. It is expected that development of digital distribution technologies should hasten implementation.

Source: Neptune Media

12-27-00—- ISDN Subscribers In Japan Break Milestone

While DSL and Cable modem access currently dominate the U.S. Broadband internet connection options, in Japan the ISDN standard is alive, well and very very successful. NTT East and West’s INS ISDN service officially broke the 10,000,000 circuits limit on Dec. 18th. Started about 10 years ago as an alternative to the telnet dialup standard as internet use has become more widespread in Japan the company announced over 5,000,000 circuits in June of 1999. In 18 months the total circuits has more than doubled over previous several years combined.

12-27-00—- Ah! Megami Sama CD Album Rerelease

Rearranged Ah! Megami Sama albums were rereleased on CD in Japan on Dec. 20th. There are 4 double CD sets, buying all 4 sets before 31 Jan qulifies you to apply for an extra CD containing a event of the Ah My Goddess seiyuus held at Pony Canyon’s AMS CD site.

12-27-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

Both Sega and Nintendo of Japan have denied the rumors in the New York Times news report, stating that Nintendo is in talks of acquiring its rival Sega Corporation. As a result of this rumor, the stock price of Nintendo has dropped down by 2.9%, while Sega’s stock price went up by 10.5% in Japan on December 27.

Konami will release Genso SuikoGaiden Vol. 2 for PlayStation in March 2001. The sequel of the Suikoden side story adventure game. There will be 4 episodes in the game, the main character is still Nash from Genso SuikoGaiden Vol. 1, in this game you will encounter many characters from the Suikoden series. You can use the save data of Suikoden 1 & 2 in this game.

Bandai announced that they have shipped 350,000 copies of their highly anticipated PlayStation 2 action game Mobile Suit Gundam, and the whole shipment has sold out in 4 days. Bandai is expecting to ship a total of 500,000 copies of the game by the end of March 2001.

Nintendo of Japan has confirmed the official launch details of the Gameboy Advance. The new 32-bit handheld will launch in Japan on March 21, for 9800 yen. There will be 4 launch titles from Nintendo, including Super Mario Kart Advance, F-Zero for Gameboy Advance, Napoleon, and Kuru Kuru Kururin. Each game will retail for 4800 yen.

Source: The Magic Box

The GIA has a report on more details behind Square’s upcoming FF8 RPG here.

The GIA secondly has A brief MP3 clip of Phantasy Star Online’s Opening theme, which can also be heard in the game’s Japanese commercial. 75 seconds long, the clip begins with an orchestral medley from Phantasy Star 2’s opening, moves to an aria, then again back to orchestral. Check it out here.

Thirdly, The GIA has details of a A new release date for Sega’s Sakura Taisen 3 RPG. The 3 GD-ROM game is due out in Japan in March.

A launch sale commemoration / concert event for Next Ltd’s Space Battleship Yamato Typing Wave Motion computer software was held in Akihabara Sunday, December 17th. The event reportedly drew fans from Osaka and other cities.

12-27-00—- Broccoli Announces New Character Expansion To Aquarian Age Card Game

Digital Character creators Broccoli have announced a new bishonen (beautiful boy) character expansion to it’s Aquarian Age card game. The male characters take a dramatic turn for the game which had previously included only Bishoujo (Beautiful Girl) characters. A new rule set that will allow begining users to easily move into gameplay has also been adopted. 70 unique cards make up this set, a pack of 12 cards retails at 400 Yen and a box of 15 packs will sale for 6000 Yen. Sale of the new cards begin from January 20th.

Update on the previously announced planned Digi Charat PC adventure game “Digi Charat Fantaga”. Taking place in Akihabara and other areas. Nine original characters will be present, look for the Japanese release in February for Windows 98/Me.

12-27-00—- New PDA Animations In Japan

From a Japanese software developing company named Lody comes news that they are currently preparing to test newly designed web site downloadable PDA Animations for the Palm and Windows CE Operating systems. 1 per week will be offered from spring and 27 misc. works are planned. 50 titles will be added throughout 2001 and JAVA format animations are planned to be accesed via new generation mobile phones.

12-27-00—- Para Para Event In Tokyo

On Dec. 29th a workshop for the ragingly popular Japanese Para Para dance craze will be held at Sega’s Tokyo Joypolis.

12-27-00—- NTT Docomo Makes I-Mode Java Standard Public

I-Mode mobile phone internet platform creators NTT DoCoMo has made public the specifications for it’s I-Mode Java standard. This will facilitate more widepread creation of Java apps for use on the phones. Docomo’s upcoming “503i” series of I-Mode phones expected early this year will utilize Java and a boom in electronic games for the platform is expected. Companies like Dowango and Bandai Net works are already developing java based games for I-Mode. also is announcing the release of the game contents for Java promptly.

12-27-00—- Newtype Online Updated

The latest issue of Newtype Online has been uploaded, you can view it at the below link. Details of this issue:

IN THIS MONTH’S ISSUE OF NEWTYPE ONLINE (www.newtype-net.com)

FOR THE BARREL
We are doing an interesting feature on the first entry of characters! What was “For The Barrel” made for in the first place? Where is it going to? (see Special Topics)

FOR THE BARREL: UPDATE!
We’ve got a message again from Gichi Ohtsuka. Check this out!! (see Special Topics)

AVALON
Instead of “SAIYUKI”, which had been cancelled for the copyright reason,, we are continuing to present “AVALON” on January site. Get a lot of fun out of Mamoru Oshii’s world!

HOW TO ART
This time Akemi Takada, well-known illustrator, was wholeheartedly called on to teach us her refined sense of touches. (see How to Art)

ART GALLERY
Thank you for sending your art works continuously ! Eight masterworks are on stand-by to show off ! (see Art Gallery)

CONFIDENTIAL FILE
We’ve got a Christmas present for you! That is Newtype’s original wall paper with its logo on it!

VOICE YOUR OPINIONS!
We ask you new questions. Feel free to answer it. So go to ‘Talk on NT’ (in NT Forum), and give it anything you want to say!

12-26-00—- Capcom Kubricks

Medicom has unveiled two new Kubrick figures which are exclusives to the Sakura-ya Hobby Shop in Shinjuku. These figures depict two popular female characters from Capcom video games: CHUN LI from STREETFIGHTER II and MORGAN from VAMPIRE HUNTER and VAMPIRE SAVIOR. Each retail for 880 yen. you can view images here.

Source: Cool Japanese Toys

12-26-00—- Tales Of Eternia Anime Update

Based on the just released latest addition to Namco’s popular Tales Of RPG series, Tales of Eternia, an anime TV series adaptation being produced by studio Xebec, featuring Brainpowerd character designer Mitsumi Inomata has been announced to air on WoWoW BS Ch 5 non scramble from January 8th, with the first episode premiering in the 18:00-18:30 slot and then subsequently weekly on Mondays in the 18:30-19:00 slot. The tv version will focus on the 4 main characters of the game and a new story featuring a totally new adventure. Many game staff members will be working on the anime including the creator of the PSX game. Music production is by King Records.

The CD Single for the TV anime featuring main theme by Masami Okui is out on February 7th at 971 Yen as well as the ED theme “” I D’LOVE YOU TO TOUCH ME”. The BGM Sountrack is due on March 7th, retailing at 2913 Yen, featured here are of course original score from the anime and vocal songs by both Okui and series seiyuu Megumi Hayashibara.

12-26-00—- Want Watch With You Commemoration Event

As previously reported the popular love game “Want To Watch With You” making the converstion to anime OAV. To commemorate the sale of vol. 1 released in Japan on Dec. 25th on DVD at 6090 Yen and event will be heald in Akihabara at 1 pm on January 1.

12-26-00—- New Fist Figures On Sale

Diamond Distributors has announced that the new Fist of the Northstar 2000 action figures are currently in stock and ready for shipping. The new releases include more detail over those in Kaiyodo’s original line, as well as more articulation, making them even more desirable. Characters in this Fist of the North Star 2000 line include the hero of the saga, Kenshiro (order code AUG002998H, $16.99), and two of his deadliest opponents, Falco (order code AUG002997H, $16.99) and Raoh (order code AUG003000H, $16.99).

Source: Figures.com

12-26-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

Konami has announced Beatmania II DX 4th Style New Songs Collection, scheduled to be released on DVD-ROM for PS2 in Japan on March 29th. This game is based on the arcade version of Beatmania II DX 4th Style, the PS2 port will have a total of 40 songs, a new Survival Mode, Original Course and Internet Ranking Mode, and the game will be compatible with both the PSX 5-key Beatmania controller and the PS2 7-key Beatmania Controller (DJ Station Pro).

Konami is currently developing a new PSX music game, Beatmania: The Sound of Tokyo, featuring songs from the popular Japanese band. The game will be released on March 29, 2001.

Sega has announced the delay plagued Sakura Taisen 3: Hometown Paris is Burning for DC release in Japan in March 2001.

Sega is working on a sequel to their Dreamcast adventure game Love Hina, called Love Hina: With a Smile Again, scheduled to release in Japan in March 2001. The story is based on the popular anime of the same name, the game will have network support, for users to download additional features from the internet.

Konami announced that they will begin to provide the online music service for mobile phone over the internet, called Dancing Karaoke D Kara. Users can enjoy both karaoke and Dance Dance Revolution at the same time over the internet, by downloading the music right from their cellular phones, you can also play the finger dancing version of DDR on the mobile phones. Each song will cost around 150 yen, there will be over 16,000 songs available at the Konami Music Online website, and 60 new songs will be added monthly.

Source: The Magic Box

12-26-00—- Studio Pierrot Animated Cartoon Fair

Between December 28-January 9, Yu Yu Hakusho and Key The Metal Idol producers, Studio Pierrot will host an “Animated Cartoon Fair 2001” event. On Dec. 28 the event will take place at the Matsuzakaya Co. Ltd. Osaka branch studio. Where Fushigi Yuugi and Ayashi No Ceres mangaka Yuu Watase and character designer Takada Akemi will exhibit their art, autograph and Pierrot will sell related goods.

12-26-00—- Outlaw Star On Cartoon Network In January

Confirming past hints first reported here that were dropped from October’s Anime Weekend Atlanta Convention, the American cable animation channel, Cartoon Network’s Toonami block is officially running commercial spots for Sunrise / Bandai Entertainment’s 26 eps. Sci-fi action/adventure Outlaw Star TV series. Look for it in the 6:30 PM time slot from January 15th.

12-25-00—- Holiday News Items

-Fanboy Entertainment has been in the news recently, beefing up it’s comic lineup with several well known artists. The company’s website has been updated in recent days with a seasonal holiday graphic from Studio Tron. The same graphic adorns the front of Holiday Postcards Fanboy has sent out, and being lucky enough to receive one this year (thanks again guys!), ANS found a rundown of current writers / artists working on Fanboy projects:

Asamiya
Abe
Taniguchi
Gontaro
Torres
Miyazawa
Levins
Hernandez
faerber
Patton
Yakkel
Masik

-On page 8 of the recently released gigantic 2001 Right Stuf Catalog, it is mentioned that the company is currently in the process of preparing it for a U.S. VHS / DVD release:

Please be aware that the guy who does the catalog is also doing a whole bunch of work on that too, so it might take a while. Trust us … he’s very aware of how cool this show is and doesn’t plan on taking any shortcuts on it.

12-25-00—- Earth Defense Family Update

A press conference for the upcoming TV series, Earth Defense Family was held in Tokyo Dec. 22nd where full production details on the series came out. EDF will air in Japan on BS Ch. 5 WoWoW from January 9th. ROLLY, who performs the OP theme song, “SAMURAI” and insertion song “MIRROR-MIRROR” was on hand at the event with director Satoshi Kimura who has in the past directed the second Tenchi Muyo Movie and Tenchi OAV’s. Kimura relayed planning on EDF has been ongoing for 3 years and commented on the series’ very dedicated use of traditional cell animation, mentioning that at this point there are certain effects in anime which can only be properly facilitated by human hand, ink and cell. The quality of animation per epsiode in EDF is said to be extremely high, with the number of animation cells used in the first episode alone exceeding 9500 pieces. It was added that the concept of “family” would play a key role throughout and the series was meant to appeal to both children and adults. Macross Creastor Shoji Kawamori will be supervising EDF with Character Designs being provided by: Kazuaki Mouri. Animation Production is by Group Tatsuku.

The Opening theme single SAMURAI, goes on sale in Japan January 24 at 1,050 Yen from Victor. Ending theme single “Shape of flower” is out on the 21st February, at 1,050 also from Victor.

12-25-00—- Agency For Cultural Affairs Awards

The Japanese Agency for Cultural Affairs Media Art Festival recently handed out it’s awards for 2000 on December 22nd. Of 858 works judged the following interesting winners of note were announced (awards will be handed out in Tokyo March 13th):

-Digital Art [ Interactive ] section
Grand prix: ‘Dragonquest VII Warriors of Eden’

-Digital art [ Not Interactive ] section
Excellent prize: ‘Avalon’
Oshii Mamoru

-Animation section
Grand prix: BLOOD THE LAST VAMPIRE
Hiroyuki Kitakubo (selected from 148 animation works entered)

-Manga section
Grand prix: ‘Vagabond’
Takehiko Inoue

12-25-00—- New Detective Conan Special

Anihabara is reporting a new Detective Conan Special will be aired in Japan on Jan. 8th. The story will feature another showdown between Conan and Kaitou Kid. Will the conclusion end in a draw like the previous “Seikimatu no Majutsushi (Magicial in the end of a century)”.

12-25-00—- Hardsuit Auctions Close

AnimEigo’s auction of the Nene and Linna hardsuits have ended at $2,550.00 and $2,200.00 respectively.

Source: UMJAMS Anime News

12-24-00—- Large European Fanart Gallery Opens English Site

The German Fanarts.net site, a large anime fanart-archives (1700+ pictures from over 140 artists) has a new english version online. The site serves as a community for fanart enthusiasts and creators. Submissions can be uploaded easily to the site and persons seing them can write comments to artists. Until now this fanart-gallery was only available in German. Being part of the Animexx-Community (www.animexx.de) which has over 2000 members, it is one of the largest fan organizations in Germany.

12-24-00—- Review: Akira Manga

Regular ANS contributor Daniel has composed a review of the Dark Horse released Akira manga, using his already collected Marvel version as a comparison.

12-24-00—- Cartoon Network Broadcast News

On Monday, Januay 1st, 2001 the American Cartoon Network will run a 5 hour Dragon Ball Z marathon from 12:00 AM to 5:00 AM (ET/PT). All 10 episodes of the Garlic jr. Saga will air during the 5 hour DBZ marathon from 12:00 am to 5:00 am (ET/PT).

January 5th will mark the reurn of Gonzo’s Blue Submarine #6 to Cartoon Network. The mini-series will run 180 minutes from 4:00 PM-7:00 (ET/PT).

Also, DBZ: Dead Zone airs this Friday, Dec. 29th from 6:00 to 7:00 PM (ET/PT).

Source: DBZ Kingdom

12-23-00—- Anime / Manga Gaming

GameSpot is reporting that Square has released new details on Final Fantasy X at the Jump Festival in Tokyo this weekend. A 30 second movie clip was played in the show, Final Fantasy X takes place in a post-apocalyptic world consumed by water, where most of the continents have been flooded. The game style is a mixture of science fiction and fantasy elements (e.g. airship with ion cannon), the characters appear in human proportion like in FF8. The movie clip is about the conflict between elements, the water goddess is destined to fight the god of fire. The water goddess-like character resembles features of Rinoa in FF8, while the god of fire is similar to summon beast Ifrit. Another scene in the clip is about summon beasts trying to break free from shackles and chains. The battle sequences look similar to FFVIII, with full screen action without menu window. The main hero has brownish hair and carries a sword in his back, he has some sort of romantic ties with the water goddess.

Tecmo released new info on their upcoming PS2 breed & battle game Monster Farm, scheduled to release in Japan in March. This time the game will use a new graphic engine to make the characters and animation more cartoony, like an anime movie. There are new monsters from the Gameboy Color game Solomon (Monster Rancher Explorer in US). Because now the PS2 can read both CD-ROM and DVD-ROM, you can acquire special monsters with some rare discs.

Shoeisha has released new info on their Dreamcast flight shooting game Macross M3, scheduled to release in Japan on February 22, for 6800 yen. This 3D shooter is mission based, during each stage, you can transform between a robot and a fighting jet. A Plus-In System is featured in the game, you can purchase special function chips and install them into your airframe. Each of the 3 main characters, Max, Miria and Moaramia will have his / her own special techniques.

Sega has given an official name to the sequel of Shenmue, it is now called Shenmue II.

Source: The Magic Box

12-23-00—- Touch TV Special Updates

Update on Mitsuru Adachi’s Touch series which is being revived in Japan this spring for a new Nippon Television animation project. The new anime focuses on a poor minor league baseball team which must face a strong U.S. rival. Seiyuu on the project include Noriko Hidaka and Yuuji Mitsuya. Production is by Nipoon Television, Toho, Shogakukan, and VAP. The broadcast date has officially been announced as Friday, Feb. 9th 21:03-22:54.

The 1998 Touch Movie ‘Miss Lonely Yesterday’ has just been announced to be released in Japan via single layer DVD from VAP on February 21st at 4800 Yen. The disc has listed running time of 93 minutes.

12-23-00—- Earth Girl Ajuna

Update on Earth Girl Ajuna, the new anime TV series project written and supervised by Macross creator Shoji Kawamori. Ajuna tells the story of a young girl who sees the future in a dream and then goes about trying to change the world in the present to avoid the future she foresaw. Yoko Kanno will create original music for the series and production is through Bandai Visual. Ajuna is being touted as using state of the art animation production. Storyline details have slightly been elaborated, a girl’s encounter with an accident one summer, gives her a vision of a future Earth where she encounters male youth. In this future world mankind has apparently achieved a higher level of awareness where mind resonates with a surrounding “Aura of the Earth”. But timelessly there exists those wishing to use power to unjustly manipulate others, and a mecha called “Aura Suit” is used against to fight the attacking forces. Earth Girl Ajuna premieres in Japan on TV Tokyo Channel 12 on January 9th 18:00 – 18:30.

12-23-00—- Anime Music News

Anime TV is reporting that Sony music Online will be web casting music videos of their latest artists in full Length exclusively for 3 days from Dec. 23 to Dec. 25. To view the videos, Media Player or Real Player is required. The Sony Music Japan web site currently features the following artists:

Participating artis include
L’arc-en-ciel
Ami Susuki
Puffy
TM Revolution
Denki Groove
Judy and Mary
Hysteric Blue
and many more…