JAEPO 2020 News: New Arcade Games From Sega, Konami & Taito

arcadehero February 7, 2020 1
JAEPO 2020 News: New Arcade Games From Sega, Konami & Taito

It’s February, and these days that means it’s JAEPO time. JAEPO is the Japan Amusement Expo and with this event, we get a deluge of news from the arcade sector that is based out of Japan. There was quite a bit to cover last year, and there is plenty to look at this time.

Here is what has been revealed from JAEPO 2020 so far; taken from Japanese news sources like 4Gamer.net, Game Watch and Twitter. Also, thanks to The Stinger Report and Arcade Belgium for highlighting certain stories that I almost overlooked.


Sega has had a busy roster of games at JAEPO 2020, that they showcased with this trailer immediately below. Having said that, I don’t seen anything new (i.e., that we haven’t seen previously) which seems destined for a Western release:

Of those new titles, we’ve mentioned Ninja Trainer before, and it looks like it’s ready to release. I haven’t found mention of a launch date though. Meanwhile, the 2020 Arcade Edition of Mario & Sonic Olympics confirmed to be launching on Saturday. It should be available within the next week or so in the US with a slightly different cabinet (and kit availability) too. Sega also had StarHorse 4 there, and no, there aren’t any indications that the big Sega Derby Card game is making a comeback out West anytime soon. Starhorse is slightly different to it anyways, being a medal game, though this one has gone fully digital.

However, perhaps the most interesting thing to come out of Sega so far is their sudden re-kindled interest in their digital distribution platform, ALL.NET P-ras Multi Ver. 3 (APM3 is how most abbreviate it). The service has been fairly low-key after launching with some big names back in 2019; I hadn’t heard of any new games for it in such a long time that I thought that they had abandoned it. By what I hear, they are more common at Sega-owned facilities in Japan due to aforementioned high cabinet costs, network service fees, taxes & revenue shares (which after all is said and done, can leave the operator with less).

But the market has seen a shake up recently with the arrival of Exa, and it seems that Sega is wanting to flex their muscle with a “response” via the platform they already have out there. For this show, they have a decent amount of space dedicated to the APM3 platform and some new games that are aiming to launch on it, including:

While it’s a much wider selection than what APM3 had, the jury is still out on whether or not these will be of interest. Some of them (but not all – e.g. Senjin, which looks like an interesting new M2 effort) have been in arcades before on APM2. It is also unknown whether or not these titles are being given some exclusive content, or in certain cases being reworked to better fit the platform. On the other hand, Guilty Gear is a name that always does very well in Japan, so I expect that it will garner some interest either way.

Not only that, but if I understand this reportage correctly, this agreement by Sega and Taito on their network services should expand the amount of content between them, and allow venues with a NESiCA begin to access All.Net P-ras Multi 3 content. The question for me is how will the fees be handled? One thing we don’t hear about often are the fees for using these services, which is one major driver for the creation of the Exa-Arcadia platform (which doesn’t have any fees apart from the purchase of the hardware & game carts).

Speaking of Exa, they are not attending this event like they did last year, but they will soon hold a “festival” event that will include announcements and allow the public to get some hands on time with the games.


The big K came out in full force at JAEPO 2020 with numerous new rhythm games. BemaniStyle is one great source for providing more detailed news and info on these; if you’re interested in them, you should probably already be following 😉 If not, here’s things like their KAC videos:

And though it has been around for over 10 years, but Konami is refreshing their Jubeat music game series with a nice – but somewhat abstract – looking new cabinet. I say abstract as the angles seem to be all over the place. That said, these look absolutely beautiful in the dark.

Jubeat 2020

Pop’n Music Welcome to Wonderland is another big refresh of an old series, serving as the latest entry in Konami’s PnM series. It sports a large screen, lots of RGB LEDs, a new control method and a powerful sound system. More details of this one are on the BemaniStyle Twitter.

Pop'n Music Welcome to Wonderland! by Konami

Armored Princess Battle Conductor had an intriguing sounding name, and best I can tell, it’s kind of a response to Sega’s Kancolle Arcade. First a photo of the cabinet, then there is a livestream where Konami showed it off (jump to 17:45 if you want to see them begin to talk about it and a little further in to see the game being played). This has an interesting second display on the left that shows your “armored princess” in what appears to be an autostereoscopic 3D display, which creates, by what I can tell, an almost holographic appearance.

The newest iteration of the Beatmania IIDX cabinet was also at the show, known as the Lightning Model. This will also house new software that goes by the name Beatmania IIDX 27 Heroic Verse. Soundtrack details are here.

Finally, a bit of food for thought on this company’s releases. While we only sort of get Konami games over in the States now (thanks to Round1USA), it is better than nothing, so it’s possible that some of the following titles will make there way here in a limited fashion. That said, I’m not sure that any of the new titles demonstrated at JAEPO will see any sort of mass adoption outside of Japan. There is talk in Bemani fan circles that Konami is chomping at the bit to make a comeback in the US, but I don’t know if that’s true or just wishful thinking.

The re-entry of any Japanese game maker in the West is much easier said than done, and just because they have games that you want to play, doesn’t mean that they actually make any money on location (the primary driver for purchases for arcade ops). Games from Japan have to be localized not just in translation but also on gameplay; Western audiences are very casual at this point and will often shun games perceived to be (or are) difficult. This in turn means they don’t earn.

If there is an online service that charges a fee, this diminishes the number of locations interested in picking a game up. The games also need to be priced competitively, then need to be promoted by people who understand both the games and the market here. We’ll just have see if the stars align for Konami or not this year.


While I haven’t heard a lot in the way of announcements from Taito out of JAEPO 2020 so far, they do have a few items, plus they had ZUNTATA performing, which is never a bad thing.

Tetote x Connect is a new rhythm game from the house of Taito that looks impressive when you have a group of synchronized players going at it. You have a digital companion that you dance with, and that is bolstered by the inclusion of the popular digital singer Hatsune Miku. Tetote x Connect is slated to launch in March.

The company is also demonstrating their airsoft gun game GunArena (renamed to On Point for the Western release), although the game has been available in Japan for some time. This might be a new software version as this official Taito tweet is calling it GunArena CE. It might be that it’s going to incorporate some of the changes that are being done for the Western release, which will include more of a barrier to help contain any stray BBs.

Bandai Namco Amusement

I haven’t seen much from Bandai Namco out of JAEPO 2020 so far, but there is this news: Taiko No Tatsujin To Support 120FPS – Going above and beyond 60FPS hasn’t been an impossibility for arcades, with occasional games aiming for 90FPS (ReRave Plus and NEON FM run at that frame rate). But it’s not just about the game supporting these rates, it’s the monitors supporting high refresh rates and low input lag too.

Besides Taiko, Bandai Namco have things like their latest version of Wangan Midnight Maximum Tune, and some promotion of their big Mobile Suit Gundam and Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure IP games, but again I haven’t seen more come out of them on these.

There’s more that is bound to come along from the show, but this should suffice for the moment. What have you seen from JAEPO 2020 that interests you?

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