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Viz Media enters games publishing with an anime-inspired debut

The manga and anime publisher is branching out

the world next door art Rose City Games/Viz Media

Viz Media, best known for publishing comic and animated adaptations of gaming franchises like The Legend of Zelda and Pokémon, is adding actual, original video games to its roster. The company announced that it has teamed up with Portland-based indie studio Rose City Games to release its debut project, the rad-looking The World Next Door.

The focus of Viz Media’s new gaming arm will be what it calls “original, narrative-driven games,” the first of which will be developed by Rose City Games. Viz Media said that it’s also “accepting publishing inquiries from developers with games at all stages of production.”

Rose City Games’ game sounds like an appropriate project for the pair. Drawing from games like Oxenfree and Night in the Woods, The World Next Door is a magic-infused, aesthetic-driven adventure game led by a teenage girl. Viz Media also cites anime as a clear inspiration on the title, whose star, Jun, travels to a world full of fantastical creatures and befriends mysterious figures along the way.

The first piece of key art also looks suitably inspired by Viz Media’s catalogue of Japanese imports; take a look below.

the world next door art Rose City Games/Viz Media

The World Next Door also appears to mark Rose City Games’ first big foray into game design. The studio has previously worked on marketing campaigns for high-profile indie projects, notably Hiveswap, last year’s greatly anticipated game based on the Homestuck franchise.

There’s no release window yet for The World Next Door, says Viz Media.