Yu-Gi-Oh! Events Suffer Massive Cancellations Due to Coronavirus

March 14, 2020 at 12:00 pm | Posted in Japanese, Konami, Other Stuff, SEVENS, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Yuma Tsukumo meeting Corona Williams in Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL World Duel Carnival for the Nintendo 3DS
Yo! Um, no thanks, I’d rather not…

In light of the coronavirus disease (COVID-19) pandemic, Konami announced a spate of cancellations yesterday for its Yu-Gi-Oh! Trading Card Game events in North America and Latin America. All World Championship Qualifier Regional Qualifiers in both territories that are scheduled through April 6 are canceled. Other Regionals outside this time frame could still be canceled at the discretion of their local organizers as well.

Also yesterday, Konami announced that the 225th Yu-Gi-Oh! Championship Series that was supposed to kick off today in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, is canceled. Additionally, YCS Hartford, which is scheduled for April 18 and 19 in Hartford, Connecticut, is also canceled.

This news follows Wednesday’s announcement that YCS Charlotte, originally scheduled for March 28 and 29 in Charlotte, North Carolina, is canceled.

As more information becomes available, you can keep up with the latest Yu-Gi-Oh! TCG happenings in the Americas by checking Konami’s events page and Facebook and Twitter accounts.

Yuma Tsukumo losing a duel to Corona Williams in Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL World Duel Carnival
Oh no!!

The Western Hemisphere isn’t the only place where Yu-Gi-Oh! events are seeing numerous cancellations.

On Thursday, Konami’s European arm announced that all World Championship Qualifier Regional Qualifiers in its territories taking place before April 15 are canceled. Furthermore, all WCQ National Championship events taking place before May 1 are canceled; this includes the Austrian Nationals on April 11 and 12 and the German Nationals on April 18 and 19.

Konami’s Yu-Gi-Oh! events in Japan are seeing their own major flurry of cancellations. A statement from Konami back in February announced the cancellation of numerous events throughout the country — from local store duels to World Championship qualifiers — until the end of March.

The coronavirus outbreak also led to the cancellation of AnimeJapan, an annual Tokyo anime exhibition that’s half industry trade show, half fan gathering for consumers. The event was originally scheduled for March 21 through 24. In its place, many of AnimeJapan’s programs are moving online, including a Yu-Gi-Oh! SEVENS event featuring the show’s four lead voice actors. The event will be live streamed on March 21 at 1:00 p.m. JST.

Update (March 17): Konami has announced additional cancellations of its Yu-Gi-Oh! events.

Tonight: Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links 3rd Anniversary Live Stream from Hollywood

February 7, 2020 at 9:00 am | Posted in Konami, Other Stuff, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Blue Angel firing up the crowd on stage in Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS episode 47

Several big-name content creators and Yu-Gi-Oh! community personalities from across North America will be partying it up at a special event this evening — and everyone is invited to tune in to all the fun! Konami is hosting a big bash at the Scum & Villainy Cantina in Hollywood to celebrate the third anniversary of Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links, complete with a live-streamed tournament. Expect to see dzeeff, fuslie, iGumdrop, OvileeMay, SimplyUnlucky, YTDan, and many more personalities.

The action kicks off tonight, February 7, at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT on the Official Yu-Gi-Oh! Channel on Twitch. Check it out!

AnimePlaza’s Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe Returns to Tokyo

December 20, 2019 at 7:00 pm | Posted in Japanese, Other Stuff, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Banner for Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe at AnimePlaza Ikebukuro

AnimePlaza’s Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe was a wildly popular Yu-Gi-Oh!-themed dining experience that celebrated the franchise’s 20th anniversary in 2016. With special dishes inspired by the series’ characters, fancy dueling decor, and limited edition merchandise, the cafe held three successful runs in four locations in Japan.

Today, ADORES, the entertainment company behind AnimePlaza’s Collaboration Cafe ventures, is bringing the Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe back to its AnimePlaza store located in Tokyo’s Ikebukuro shopping district! Taking place from December 21, 2019, through January 31, 2020, the cafe will feature new character goods to collect — like coasters, placemats, and keychains — and will wow diners with its clever themed dishes.

Ikebukuro’s Yu-Gi-Oh! Cafe Revival Menu includes old favorites from the cafe’s previous runs, new variations of previous dishes, and entirely new creations inspired by Yu-Gi-Oh! VRAINS. Here’s a list of what’s cooking!

Drinks:

Jack Atlas's Blue-Eyes Mountain drink and scone at the AnimePlaza Ikebukuro Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe
At just ¥630, Jack Atlas’s favorite coffee won’t make your wallet cry (unlike the ¥3,000 item at previous Yu-Gi-Oh! cafes).

  • Yami Yugi – “Millennium Puzzle Drink” – Purple melon soda, mixed berries, whipped cream, chocolate slices, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Jonouchi – “Dark Mega Flare!!” – Cola, strawberry sauce, blackcurrant sorbet, silver dragées, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Judai – “Gotcha☆ Let’s Duel!” – Cola, strawberryade, strawberries, whipped cream, tortilla chips.
  • Yusei – “For now, I’d Like Some Milk…” – Milk.
  • Jack – “Blue-Eyes Mountain with Service Scone” (pictured above) – Blue-Eyes Mountain coffee, scone, blueberry sauce, cream cheese.
  • Yuma – “I’m Gonna Kattobing!!” – Sprite, pink melon syrup, whipped cream, blue edible glitter, cherry.
  • Yuya – “The Real Fun Has Just Begun!” – Melon soda, Blue Hawaii syrup, vanilla ice cream, star nata de coco, whipped cream, mini tomato.

Entrees:

Duel Academia's Deluxe Draw Break at the AnimePlaza Ikebukuro Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe
Duel Academia’s most famous sandwich makes its third appearance at the Yu-Gi-Oh cafe.

  • Jonouchi – “Jonouchi Deluxe! Friendship Curry!” – Rice and curry, beef, parsley, milk potion.
  • Anzu – “Anzu’s If You Tell, Then… Burger” – Burger buns, hamburger, teriyaki sauce, mayonnaise, green leaf lettuce, tomato ketchup.
  • Duel Academia – “Duel Academia’s Deluxe Draw Bread” (pictured above) – Burger buns, fried egg, sliced cheese, green leaf lettuce, mayonnaise, tomato ketchup.
  • Kiryu – “This Will Have to Satisfy Me! Kyosuke Kiryu Satisfaction Pasta” – Pasta, meat sauce, carbonara sauce, seafood, mini tomatoes, Parmesan cheese, basil.
  • Number 39: Utopia – “The Bearer of the White Wings of Hope!” – Omelet, chicken and rice, white sauce, mint cherry, tomato ketchup.”
  • Ryoga – “Revive! Therapeutic Meal Before the Revival Duel” – Bread roll, cream stew, potato salad, green leaf lettuce, melon sorbet, green tea.
  • Yuya – “Sakaki Family Pancake” – Hotcakes, breaded pork cutlet, tartar sauce, green leaf lettuce, tomato ketchup.

Desserts:

Yugi's Marshmallon toast dessert at the AnimePlaza Ikebukuro Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe
Cannot be destroyed in battle, but can be devoured.

  • Yugi – “Marshmallon’s Sugary Marshmallow Toast” (pictured above) – Pan loaf bread slice, marshmallows, cocoa powder, chocolate sauce, strawberry sauce, whipped cream, colored sugar pellets, star sprinkles, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Blue-Eyes White Dragon – “Burst Stream of Destruction Parfait” – Blue salt ice cream, bananas, strawberries, blue gelatin, whipped cream, Blue Hawaii syrup, corn flakes, white chocolate sauce, silver dragées, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Kuriboh – “Kuriboh & Winged Kuriboh’s Mont Blanc” – Mont Blanc, chocolate Mont Blanc, whipped cream, colored sugar pellets, adzuki bean wafer.

New Menu Items:

Playmaker's drink at the AnimePlaza Ikebukuro Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe
It transforms!

  • Playmaker Drink – “Seize the Wind, Playmaker!” (pictured above) – Butterfly pea flower tea, pink lemon syrup, whipped cream, sliced lemon, star nata de coco.
  • Soulburner Drink – “Duelist Clad in Flames” – Sprite, blue lychee syrup, orange gelatin, whipped cream, dried strawberries.
  • Seto Kaiba Drink – “Kaiba Corporation Employee ID Soda” – Calpis (Calpico) soda, Ramune syrup, whipped cream, silver dragées, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Go Onizuka Food – “Hero Recovery Go Onizuka Plate” – Rice, grilled seaweed, star-shaped hamburger, potato salad, rolled omelet, mini tomatoes, broccoli, green leaf lettuce, grapefruit, oranges.
  • Revolver Food – “Appear! The Red Pasta That Satisfies My Appetite!” – Fettuccine, shrimp, cabbage, tomato sauce, garlic butter, black pepper, adzuki bean wafer.
  • Playmaker Dessert – “Hot Dog Shop Deluxe – Dessert Dog” – Hot dog bun, banana, whipped cream, strawberry sauce, white chocolate sauce, strawberryade, blue icing, colored sugar pellets.
  • Ai & Roboppi Dessert – “Bro’s and My Fusion Plate” – Donuts, orange slice, whipped cream, blue icing, black vanilla ice cream, pink feuilletine (crunchy crepe flakes), blueberry sauce.
  • Lightning Dessert – “Appear, The Waffle Circuit That Guides the Light!” – Waffle, diced apples, mango sauce, white chocolate, vanilla ice cream, powdered sugar, tortilla chips.

For regular updates about this Yu-Gi-Oh! Collaboration Cafe, including information about reservations and openings, check out the AnimePlaza Ikebukuro Twitter, @ad_anipla.

Previous AnimePlaza Yu-Gi-Oh! Cafe menus:
Ikebukuro: April 2 to May 31, 2016
Sapporo: May 3 to 31, 2016
Machida/Sapporo: August 5 to 31, 2016
Akihabara: October 1 to November 30, 2016

Win a Trip to Japan from Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links

October 24, 2019 at 6:00 pm | Posted in Konami, Other Stuff, Yu-Gi-Oh! | Leave a comment
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Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links Win a Trip to Japan sweepstakes ad image featuring Kaiba and Mokuba

To celebrate the addition of The Dark Side of Dimensions to Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links, Konami wants to send one lucky duelist to Japan in an awesome sweepstakes. The winner and a guest will receive round-trip airfare to Tokyo and a four-night stay at a hotel in the city. To enter, simply submit your email address and a screenshot of your favorite Yu-Gi-Oh! Duel Links card.

This sweepstakes is open to all residents of the 50 United States and Washington, D.C., who are the age of majority. The winner must have a passport valid through 2021, and the trip must take place sometime in 2020. Check the official rules in the above link for more details. This sweepstakes ends on October 30.

(News from Konami mobile, shared by Yu-Gi-Oh! Fan Page)

Yu-Gi-Oh! Event Host, Translator Loses Job After Giving Interviews

September 8, 2019 at 6:00 am | Posted in Konami, Other Stuff | Leave a comment

Yusei grimacing in Yu-Gi-Oh! 5D's episode 47

A popular host at Konami’s Yu-Gi-Oh! events has lost his job after participating in online discussions where he provided details about his work and Konami’s Yu-Gi-Oh! business.

Oliver Gehrmann, a freelance contractor for Konami based in Berlin, Germany, has been a host for Konami EU’s major Yu-Gi-Oh! events for the past five years. Yu-Gi-Oh! fans will recognize him from numerous YCS, European Championship, and National Championship live streams. Additionally, Gehrmann worked with the German Yu-Gi-Oh! translator to review the content of Konami’s trading card products.

In July, Gehrmann participated in two conversations with the Yu-Gi-Oh! community where he spoke in depth about the history of his work with Yu-Gi-Oh! and about the organization and execution of Yu-Gi-Oh! events. The first was a live streamed interview with prominent Yugituber Nadhir “Farfa” Mazouni. The second was a Reddit Ask Me Anything (AMA) discussion. In addition to offering his opinions, both positive and negative, about Yu-Gi-Oh! and his employer, Gehrmann’s discussions touched upon some financial information about the events, unrealized Yu-Gi-Oh! business endeavors, and other potentially market-sensitive information.

Yesterday, Gehrmann revealed that Konami’s Japan office was none too happy about these interactions with the community and doesn’t want the 35-year-old freelancer involved with Yu-Gi-Oh! any longer.

Oliver Gehrmann will not be at any more Yu-Gi-Oh! events for the rest of 2019, and “very likely” will not be at any events next year either, he explained in a video posted to the Zodiac Duelist Facebook group. (Note: Admin approval is necessary to view this group.)

“A little while ago, I got a phone call. And in that phone call with the [Konami] U.K. office, I had been told that I will not be booked for any more events this year,” said Gehrmann.

“The truth is I don’t know who kicked me out. I don’t know who made the final call. What I had been told is that someone in Japan did not like the things that I did.”

What did he do that warranted his removal?

“The thing is, I’ve been told that in the Ask Me Anything on Reddit and in the interview I did on Farfa’s stream, I came across too much like a Konami employee,” said Gehrmann. “That’s it. […] And that’s a crime, especially when you’re doing this for 16 years. And I disagree with that.

“I have been in the industry for long enough to know that doing something like this interview could backfire, so what I did is I checked with the U.K. office before I did the interview. Nadhir knows this. Nadhir had to wait for that confirmation when I first told him, ‘Hey, I would be interested in doing the interview but let me check.’ He knew this. I was very transparent with him about that. And the same thing with Reddit. Both times I checked with the U.K. office and they said, ‘You can do those things. Just make sure that you make it clear that you’re not a Konami employee.’ And both times I did.”

After learning the reason for the Japan office’s decision, Gehrmann, rightfully upset, again approached the U.K. office, who acknowledged giving him permission to do the interview. However, “they basically said, ‘Yeah, we know. But someone in Japan doesn’t like it.'”

“Everything gets decided in Japan, apparently,” Gehrmann laughed.

Furthermore, Gehrmann has lost his job as one of Yu-Gi-Oh!’s German translators. The translation process is coordinated in Japan, so he asked his Japanese colleagues if there was something wrong with his work.

“They said, ‘It’s not always deadlines and work. Sometimes it’s other things.'”

Gehrmann pressed for an answer, knowing full well that his audacity would seal his fate with this Japanese company. Ultimately, he was only told that “it’s for business reasons.”

The writing may have already been on the wall for Gehrmann even before his July interactions with the community. Gehrmann noted that back in February or March, he received a phone call confirming that he would be hosting this year’s World Championship. However, two months prior to the event, he learned that someone in Japan decided against this and wanted different hosts.

Oliver Gehrmann began playing Yu-Gi-Oh! in 2003, then moved on to judging, eventually advancing all the way up to the World Championship level as a head judge. He began providing written coverage for Yu-Gi-Oh! in late 2004. Yesterday was the fifth anniversary of his debut as a live stream host.

(h/t A11sopp)

Kazuki Takahashi Authors New Story for Marvel, Shonen Jump+ Collaboration

September 2, 2019 at 6:00 pm | Posted in Japanese, Other Stuff | 3 Comments
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Announcement banner for Marvel and Shonen Jump Plus collaboration
Marvel x Shonen Jump+
Super Collaboration!!
Japan and America’s two mega giants present a miraculous collaboration!!!
Seven Jump authors will draw their own Marvel story!!
Tuesday, September 3 >>> Wednesday, November 27

This fall, Marvel and Shueisha’s online publication Shonen Jump+ are partnering to produce several original manga stories that feature Marvel characters. Yu-Gi-Oh! creator Kazuki Takahashi is participating in this collaboration with his work, SECRET REVERSE, a two-parter that will be published on September 4 and November 27.

The full line-up for this collaboration is as follows:

* September 3: Interview with Marvel’s Editor in Chief by Takeshi Sakurai (The Right Way to Make Jump)

* September 4: SECRET REVERSE, Part 1, by Kazuki Takahashi

* September 18: Gag Reel by Hachi Mizuno (Akuten Wars illustrator)

* October 2: Interview with Heroes by Ken Ogino (Lady Justice)

* October 16: SAMURAI by Sanshiro Kasama and Hikaru Uesugi (Tsugihagi Quest author and illustrator)

* October 30: Halloween Avengers by mato (The Emperor and I)

* November 13: Ant-Man+ by Toyotaka Haneda (Vocchi-men)

* November 27: SECRET REVERSE, Part 2, by Kazuki Takahashi

These stories are free to read in Japanese on Shonen Jump+ (click the red 読む!!! arrow beneath each title). There’s no word on whether they will see an English release in the future.

(h/t Bleeding Cool)

Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid Author Responds to New Yu-Gi-Oh! Cards

June 16, 2019 at 6:00 pm | Posted in Other Stuff, Yu-Gi-Oh! | 6 Comments
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Preview of the artwork of Dragon Maid Husky from the Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG

New cards coming to the Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game have caught the eye of a popular manga author. Today, the official Japanese Yu-Gi-Oh! news hub YU-GI-OH.jp unveiled three new card themes debuting this August in Japan. One of the themes is called Dragon Maid and features — you guessed it — a human woman with dragon horns, wings, and a tail who is dressed as a maid.

The announcement included pictures of two cards from this theme. Dragon Maid Husky (shown above) is a charming dragon maid ready to serve you. Dragon Maids’ Kindness (below) has Husky and four other dragon maids busily prepping a dining room.

This news quickly made it to coolkyousinnjya, the creator of Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid, who took an immediate liking to the cards.

Dragon maids are in Yu-Gi-Oh!!” tweeted coolkyousinnjya. “I want to build a deck with them!”

C’mon, Konami, you can make it happen. Send some cards to coolkyousinnjya!

Any fans of Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid out there? What do you think of these cards?

Check out the Miss Kobayashi’s Dragon Maid manga from Seven Seas Entertainment and the anime on Crunchyroll and Funimation.

Preview of the artwork of Dragon Maids' Kindness from the Yu-Gi-Oh! OCG

Konami Hires Former Bandai Namco Community Manager as New Yu-Gi-Oh! Digital Marketing Coordinator

June 11, 2019 at 6:00 am | Posted in Konami, Other Stuff | Leave a comment

Yugi vowing to show Pegasus no mercy in episode 38

Social media maven, gamer, and Twitch streamer Edwin “TalesOfMrE” Chuah announced on Monday that he is the new Yu-Gi-Oh! digital marketing coordinator at Konami’s U.K. office. Previously, Chuah worked at Bandai Namco Entertainment Europe as its events and community manager, where he handled the company’s social media initiatives, PR, and events execution. He was with Bandai Namco for over five years.

You can give Chuah a warm welcome on Twitter, @TalesOfMrE, and also catch him streaming on Twitch with the same username.

Chuah replaces longtime Yu-Gi-Oh! marketing coordinator PJ Tierney, who left Konami on May 24. Tierney, an artist and writer who played Yu-Gi-Oh! for over 10 years, worked freelance for Konami for four years before being hired full-time in 2013. In addition to interacting with fans on Yu-Gi-Oh! EU’s social media channels and helming its live streams, Tierney was also responsible for the production of numerous playmats and online projects, like the Noble Knights Showcase.

Funimation Acquires Manga Entertainment UK

May 29, 2019 at 12:00 pm | Posted in Other Stuff | 2 Comments
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Yugi shaking hands with Joey while their friends watch in episode 135

Funimation today announced that it has acquired Manga Entertainment UK, a London-based anime licensor and distributor. Manga UK is the current distributor of all Yu-Gi-Oh! anime on home video in the United Kingdom and has also brought Yu-Gi-Oh! movies to theaters throughout the country. The company offers some Yu-Gi-Oh! Blu-ray and DVD products that are not available in other markets, like the remastered version of Yu-Gi-Oh! The Movie: Pyramid of Light and Yu-Gi-Oh! movie bundles.

Manga UK confirmed that there will be no changes to its Manga UK brand and that its employees still remain with the company.

Funimation was the distributor of Yu-Gi-Oh! on home video in the United States until 2009.

(News from Funimation, h/t ANN)

Yu-Gi-Oh! Among Top Anime Properties for TV Tokyo in 2018

May 14, 2019 at 11:00 am | Posted in Japanese, Other Stuff | 1 Comment

Seto Kaiba clenching his fist in episode 108

Yu-Gi-Oh! licensor TV Tokyo today announced its financial results for its 2018 fiscal year (March 2018 through March 2019). TV Tokyo is a massive enterprise whose businesses include television broadcasting, content licensing, and video streaming, among other things.

TV Tokyo’s anime properties generated ¥19.7 billion (about $180 million) in sales over the year, with nearly 70 percent of that coming from overseas.

The company revealed that its anime titles accounting for the highest number of sales were:

  1. Naruto
  2. Boruto
  3. Yu-Gi-Oh!
  4. Black Clover
  5. Bleach

Additionally, the titles generating the highest gross profits were:

  1. Naruto
  2. Boruto
  3. Pokemon
  4. Black Clover
  5. Yu-Gi-Oh!

Overall, TV Tokyo recorded a net profit of ¥3.2 billion (about $29 million), a 46.6 percent drop from the previous year. Its sales increased 1.4 percent, to ¥149.2 billion (about $1.36 billion). The company noted that its overseas and streaming businesses were vital to its income outside its domestic broadcasting businesses.

(News from TV Tokyo Holdings 2018 Financial Results Supplementary Materials, h/t The Nikkei)

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