We already knew that Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment was coming to the US digitally. This was and still is awesome, although it meant that if European or Australian gamers wanted to play the game, they would have to import the Chinese version with English subtitles from Play-Asia (which you still can do if you would like a physical copy). It was better than nothing, but kind of a bummer that Europe and Australia were left out...but not anymore!
Bandai Namco have decided to make much cooler for European and Australian SAO fans. They're releasing the localised game digitally on PSN EU!
I particularly enjoyed these quotes from Bandai Namco's European vice president of IP Stragegy, Herve Hoerdt:
“Adding such a strong license to our portfolio in Europe and Australia is an honour for us. Fans were looking forward to enjoy this game, we listened to them.“
“Our close collaboration with Sony allows us to release more and more niche games; Sword Art Online: Hollow Fragment is the result of this successful partnership!”
I'm very pleased with this move from Bandai Namco and think it's a move in the right direction for games, particularly one based on an already globally popular anime. The audience for these games is only growing and will be encouraged to grow further if these games are easier to access. Good one, Bandai Namco!
The game will be available in the US, Europe and Australia in July on the Playstation Network. Impatient? If you want to get the Japanese version, it is available at Play-asia.com.