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PostPosted: Thu Dec 13, '12, 5:53 am 
For those who may have forgotten, it was December of 2011 when Bandai Entertainment officially announced they were ending physical releases here and would gradually pull out of the North American market. The plan as set fourth in the statement, which was on Bandai Entertainment's U.S.A. website was that pre-annouced releases up through a certain March date would still be released as planned and that beyond that date they would continue to press and distribute those titles for which they still retained valid licenses for until such time as those licenses expired. During the initial two months which followed this announcement that there was a major blowout of Bandai DVD and BD titles all over the internet, including on Bandai's own e-store.

But now, here we are one year later. It is now painfully apparent, Bandai Entertainment has ceased publishing and replinishing the inventory of their vendors for those many titles that they still hold the licenses too. Titles such as the Lucky Star series are now commanding one hundred dollars plus on the secondary market for the Anime Legends series box, which was retailing for $29.99, and nearly that much just for a stand alone copy of volume six which seems may have only had one pressing run. Far worse is the pricing on more established franchise series such as Gundam and Code Geass.

Mobile Suit Gundam (the original series) had it's Anime Legends: Complete Series Part 2 set released post announcement and many staple online anime retailers are now discovering that despite being only a ten month old release, there will not be any supply to replenish the inventory when it runs out. This has already brought unscropolous sellers to jacking the price up to above MSRP. Far worse is the situation with all things pertaining to the Mobile Suit Gundam Seed sub-franchise. Right Stuff has sold out of all things SEED, other anime sales sites, and Amazon sellers, have taken this as the green light to jack the prices up to astronomical heights of stupid. Take for example ever-opertunistic RACS (Robert's Anime Corner Store). They still have Anime Legends series sets of SEED in-stock... at $129.98 each... the MSRP for which was $49.99. And 00 Gundam? Yeah, they've got the Anime Legends season sets of that too, your for ONLY (insert eye roll) $149.98 a season! *cough*price-scalping*cough*

Don't misunderstand, RACS isn't the only site/seller that's now essentially price gouging consumers on Bandai's titles at present. RACS Just happens to be easy to reference as they're, to my knowledge, the only site nice enough to tell you upfront that their reasoning for the high pricing is because the title has gone OOP.

At present, the only Bandai published titles not yet being affected are the Ghost in the Shell: Stand Alone Complex seasons and movies, and only due to a contracual agreement upheld by lawsuit between they and Anchor Bay Media (parent company of Manga Entertaihnment). At present, Bandai has been continuing to press and resupply their vendors with sufficient enough stock of GitS: S.A.C. DVD's and BD's that even Wal*Mart tends to have them on shelves in-store.

Worst hit though by this mass discontinuation are Bandai's premium label titles which were released under the Honneamise brand label. All Honneamise releases were limited print runs to begin with, and now they're all history. If you thought they were expensive before, they're even higher now.

Watch for all Bandai Entertainment titles (Cowboy Bebop, The Big O, Crest/Banner of the Stars, My-Hime, etc...) to spike in price hard during the coming months as more and more of the regular online retailers sell out of their mostly discounted inventory.


Last edited by Tweeg on Thu Dec 13, '12, 5:53 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Fri Dec 14, '12, 5:44 am 
I hate to see anything go up to such a high price like that, but that's supply and demand for you. As long as people are willing to pay prices that elevated, they'll remain up there. Unless Bandai decides to return to the US or license their titles to another publisher, there is little hope of a price drop. I'll be surprised if there's not an increase in piracy for these shows, as well.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 1, '13, 3:39 am 
There's also the disappointment of not knowing what will ever become of the licenses that they own the rights to but never got around to releasing.:
- Banner of the Stars III (two episode OVA)
- Code Geass direct sequels (already some OVA's released and a third season in the works)
- My-HiME (more content rumored in the works)
- And way more Gundam than you can shake a beam saber at.


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PostPosted: Sat Aug 24, '13, 2:28 am 
Well, at a recent convention that transpiredthis month Funimation announced license acquisitions, Not surprisingly, they were all former Bandai licenses.

Angel Links
Banner of the Stars
Banner of the Stars II
Passage of the Stars "Birth" (OVA)
Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion
Code Geass Lelouch of the Rebellion R2
Code Geass Lelouch Akito the Exiled
Crest of the Stars
Escaflowne
Escaflowne the Movie
My-Hime
My-Z-Hime
My-Z-Hime O~S.ifr~
My Z-Hime Zwei
Outlaw Star
Tales of the Abyss
Witch Hunter Robin


Of those titles, Bandai has already released all of them save for Code Geass: Akito the Exiled. And, Bandai did not finish releasing "Tales of the Abyss". A mixed bad really. I would have preferred seeing them license previously more unreleased (in English) content, such as Banner of the Stars III, the latest My-Hime series, and especially missing OVA's and Seasons of series that they've already partially released and then abandonned for no apparent nor given reason.

And then RightStuf's Nozomi Publishing Label had the fantastic announcement that they've picked up the license to Mobile Suit Gundam Unicorn. Another series which Bandai never finished releasing here. Now this has me excited for two reasons; pne I love Gundam, and two, Shawn Kleckner hinted that if sales of the series' volumes goes well that Sunrise is considering to let them have first choice oppurtunity at licensing additional Gundam titles. Might we finally see a localization of Mobile Suit Gundam ZZ? Or even a non-$50 per volume relese of IGLOO? One can only hope.


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PostPosted: Tue Jan 7, '14, 8:44 pm 
Ah ! BANNER OF THE STARS ! Crest of the Stars : what a fantastic OVA serie.. I've started to read the English translated books by Hiroyuki Morioka and that is great too !
The anime are so great.. fantastic one !
I've never seen Banner of the stars (the following) BUT I hope to Watch it someday :)


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