There’s some potential trouble on the horizon for us Atlus fans. Atlus isn’t technically its own company; it is owned by a parent company called Index Corporation. This isn’t even a gaming company, just some corporation that originally funded Atlus. Now, the shoe is on the other foot. Atlus is easily the most profitable (if not only profitable) part of Index, a fact that isn’t enough to save the company from potential bankruptcy. Index is also apparently under investigation for money fraud on top of all the money they owe. The potential of a dissolution of the company is very possible.
This could mean a variety of things for Atlus. They may be sold off to some company, most likely a third-party publisher who would continue to fund them. Atlus may not be the creators of the best-selling games out there, but they make a hell of an JRPG. Their following is somewhat of a cult following, but there is enough of an audience there to support them for years to come. The one issue here would be with who might end up buying Atlus. I could see Ubisoft or maybe even Namco picking up the publisher and just letting them do whatever, probably netting a neat profit in a year or two. Say that Nintendo picks them up instead, a not unlikely occurrence considering the slew of new RPGs Atlus keeps putting out on the 3DS. Of course, this would automatically mean that all Atlus RPGs would immediately be locked to Nintendo platforms; certainly not the worst news in the world but potentially crushing to some fans who wish to play their games on other systems. It is also possible that the company just folds. This outcome is highly unlikely, as Atlus does constantly make a profit. I’m sure someone would pick them up somehow along the way.
We will have to wait and see what this means for the future of Atlus. I really enjoy the mature and creative RPGs they put out every year (although I want Persona 5 already!) as they are unlike anything else out there. It would be a bummer to see their priorities shift due to financial troubles that aren’t even their own.