Perfect Square Acquires Yo-Kai Watch Manga
Perfect Square, the all ages imprint of manga publisher Viz Media, has announced that it has acquired the publishing rights to the new property Yo-Kai Watch.
Yo-Kai Watch started as a video game in Japan and has expanded into a cartoon and manga. The first movie based on the property was released in December 2014. The manga began in 2012 and won the award for best children’s manga at both the 38th Annual Manga Awards last year and the 60th Shogakukan Manga Awards this January.
The Yo-Kai Watch franchise will be coming to North America in September, with Hasbro handling the toy line, while the licensor for the cartoon has yet to be announced. The series will be localized, with most of the characters’ names changed except for the main Yo-Kai Whisper and Jibanyan.
Yo-Kai Watch is about Nathan Adams (Keita), a boy who discovers an old toy vending machine in the forest. He meets the ghost-like Whisper, who gives him a watch that allows him to see Yo-Kai, supernatural creatures who can be good or evil. These Yo-Kai are everywhere and can be either phantoms or everyday objects but cannot be seen by the human eye. With Whisper and feline companion Jibanyan, Nathan sets out to explore his town and find new Yo-Kai to battle or befriend.
The series has a lot in common with Pokémon, with the strange and different creatures and the need to battle them. But there seem to be enough differences that it will appeal to the same audience without appearing derivative. The creatures in the series are based on the unique supernatural beings from Japanese folklore, called yokai, that are unusual and sometimes humorous. The manga’s take on these creatures are on the “fun and zany” side.
Yo-Kai Watch will be published bi-monthly and will be available in print only. It is rated for “A” for all ages, and is a title that families as well as kids will enjoy. Watch for it this September.
Filed under: All Ages
About Lori Henderson
Lori Henderson is a mother of two teenage daughters and an avid reader. She blogs about manga at her personal blog Manga Xanadu as well as contributing and editing for Manga Village. She blogs about all things fandom (mainly Doctor Who) at her other personal blog Fangirl Xanadu. She's been at it so for over 5 years now and counting!
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