Anyone who attended ECTS a fortnight ago will remember Ed Fries' heart-warming speech about Microsoft's current slew of Xbox developers, including the eponymous Lionhead Studios whose phenomenal Black & White is nearing completion at the moment. You may also have noticed that many if not all were Western development companies, and if sources within Microsoft are to be believed, the next group of developers from Japan will be announced this Wednesday. Possible contenders include Capcom, Konami, Namco, Tecmo, Koei and Grandia II authors Game Arts. The biggest possibility of course is Japanese RPG giant Squaresoft, who have long been rumoured to be in talks with Microsoft. If these developers were to bring their wares to the Xbox it could expect some of the best beat-em-ups, RPGs, puzzlers and platformers to comprise its ranks at launch late next year. Fans could expect a full complement of games from different genres - in other words plenty of variety, and when games make a games console, you have to consider that a major plus.
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