An interview with manga author Hiro Mashima.
August was a boring month as far as high-powered releases go. September is not, and there are a couple of series (particularly the Steins Gate combo pack hovering around 1500 with 4 weeks to go and the second half of Attack on Titan) which figure to have a pretty decent chance of making the US BD charts and providing really useful data. 4 solid datapoints wouldn’t be much, but it’s a lot better than 2. I could get more pumped about that if one of the release titles due out this month weren’t straight-up false advertising.
I recently made a trial account on opusdata to see what I could scrounge up as far as anime data goes. Unfortunately, I wasn’t able to get a ton of data, since the backlog of weekly charts are anything but free. But I did come away with their sales figures for a couple different anime movies, whose sales ranged from over a million to a couple thousand depending on how mainstream the title was:
The One Piece/Fairy Tail movie numbers may or may not be reflective of what the shows regularly put up. I have a couple volumes’ worth of data for each, and plan on estimating what their long-term sales are after I get additional confirmation of the amazon model I’m currently using. It does seem, based on a cursory glance at the current rankings of March/April releases, like US releases have fairly long tails.
Another month, another set of anime releases to track on amazon. Of particular note are Hetailia The Beautiful World (~5000th with 4 weeks to release, big US fan presence) and Deadman Wonderland (~3000th with 3 weeks to release). Those two have legitimate shots at the big charts, though any series should have to rank 500th or lower for multiple days to have a realistic chance.
This is just an infodump post for the May series I’ll be tracking, compiled via amazon’s upcoming anime releases list. Not much beyond the initial numbers here. The April summary post will be up in a week or so (though it won’t have updated charts – I want to just keep collecting data for the next few months before I try identifying trends again).
Note: The part 3 of the series on composers is on hold for a little bit. I got pretty deep into the rabbit hole and want to actually listen to the stuff these guys wrote to see if their big pieces have common elements. Since music is more passive listening, it’s somewhat feasible, and is an important part of looking at what that junk stat means, if anything.
And speaking of articles delayed way longer than I expected them to be, game adaptations! While console game sales are somewhat reliably available via the numbers, PC VN data is not, so they can’t be reduced into a plottable stat in the same way that manga and LNs can (the latter’s data are still incomplete due to thresholds and long tails, but big gains are usually obvious because of there’s a baseline to compare them to). I eventually decided to start breaking them down as a two-number stat line; highest yearly rank on VN retailer getchu and console sales via vgchartz, both within one year on either side of the anime airdate. I hope that I’ll be able to start posting those 2011/2012 stat lines before Scottie Wilbekin wins me real money in my March Madness pool, both of which I have now successfully jinxed. Anyway.
This is the last individual/plot post I’ll be doing for the March US releases I’ve been tracking. The full sheet of data is available here. I’m doing tracking for several April releases as well, and will continue to do so so long as there look to be more questions worth the daily effort of collecting the figures. An analysis post, comparing some of the narratives I touched on earlier with the new data, discussing other points to attack with a sample that will continue to grow, and making very, very tentative factor-of-two sales estimates based on extrapolation from somewhat known low-end and high-end daily totals will (hopefully) be up sometime this week. Speaking of the low-end, here’s the last chart for the performance of that Aria the Natural release:
Thankfully, I got the sale I needed this week. It seems like a single sale is enough to bump an item ranked 300,000th down under the 120,000th place no-sales line. Good to know.
Plots are posted after the jump.
Way back in December, I started a rough, bare-bones look at a bit of publicly available data; US Amazon TV/Movie bestseller list rankings for anime releases. That data collection is mostly done, pending K’s release this Tuesday, and it yielded some potentially interesting nuggets (expect that summary post to happen before this next weekend). Enough so that I plan to do the same at least for the month of March. This is a list of the releases I’ll be tracking over the next 30 days, with their release dates, prices, and initial rankings. All series were accessed via amazon’s upcoming anime releases page.
Two points before the list itself:
-I compiled my February list too early (several titles were only announced for release after I built my list), and missed the opportunity to track some releases that way. Since most titles tracked in the February sample were relatively steady and very low on the list until a week before release (save for Robotics;Notes’ ridiculously discounted edition), I’m going to start tracking monthly rankings approximately one week prior to the first set of releases from now on.
-The price I note is the series’ MSRP price. If the series becomes listed at more than 50% off that price at any time during the amazon solicitation, I will note that both now and during the final analysis. The February part 1 release of Robotics;Notes had such a discount.
I present few results here; I’m mainly just laying the groundwork for something I hope will bear fruit at the end of the titular month.
As you may know, I’m very interested in the intricacies of the market for Region 1 anime releases, and I’ve looked at the problem from a few different angles. There are sources for this sort of thing, but I’d rather start building a cache of available numbers than just rely on word from ANNCast, likely reliable though it is, that certain series did “well” or “break-even”. This post is the raw beginnings of an approach on this problem, though at this phase of things I’m mainly interested in finding indicators that seem accurate.
I’ve had a bunch of stuff I’d like to write about on the back burner for a while now; Yozakura Quartet’s new OAD-bundled volume selling about 17,000 copies when the maximum cost of the OVA would have been covered by 9000, a return to the issue of sales boosts that manga get from anime, and the slow-but-ongoing attempt to accurately set odds for the sequel of any given anime series. All of those are important questions, and I’ll address them in due time.
But right now, manga giant Kodansha and popular legal stream platform crunchyroll rolled out a bombshell: Crunchyroll Manga. Current to Japan digital releases of 12 manga (headlined by Fairy Tail and Attack on Titan, ones I pegged months ago as potential headliners for a Kodansha USA service) that are fairly big in the U.S, for 5 bucks a month.* This isn’t as big of a deal as some of the other things I’ve observed, but it certainly has the potential to make a big impact. I don’t want to be premature, but the combination of the CR brand and the solid rollout slate (similar to how CR packaged big names in anime when they first decided to go legal) has me optimistic about the prospects of the service.
This is very much a first-response column, looking at the statistical profiles of the rollout and comparing it to Jmanga and Weekly Shonen Jump Alpha, two other big names in digital manga.** How does this compare with other digital rollouts?
This past year, viz media pulled off a first for the non-Japan manga industry. I’m referring to Shonen Jump Alpha, a digital “magazine” offering same-week release of the chapters of some 11 Weekly Shonen Jump manga. It’s pretty cool, and at 26$/year for 48 issues (and a buck per back issue), it’s not a totally unreasonable subscription fee. But that specific business model, one of same-week releases for official translations, is unfortunately not something that’s likely to be transferable to the majority of manga. Especially seinen and josei series with smaller fanbases. If you’ve ever wondered if the manga translation industry will catch up to where the anime industry is now with simulcasts, this article discusses the depressing reality of the situation and why such an outcome is relatively unlikely.