Sega pulls Judgment from sale in Japan following drug arrest

14 March, 2019, 06:27 | Author: Sammy Rose
  • Sega pulls Judgment from sale in Japan following drug arrest

Before becoming an actor, Taki was a musician, co-founding the popular synthpop group Denki Groove.

The 51-year-old actor, whose real name is Masanori Taki, is reported to have admitted using a small quantity of cocaine in Tokyo, according to the Japan Times.

The effect of the actor's arrest on the western version of the game is not yet known.

According to Japan Times, the punishment for possessing or using cocaine in Japan is a prison sentence of up to seven years.

Taki served as both model and voice of Judgment's yakuza Kyohei Hamura.

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"Sega has received the arrest reports and are now confirming the facts, but for the time being, we will voluntarily refrain from shipments and digital sales of [Judgment], as well as from things like posting the product's homepage", the company said in a statement, as translated by the games website Gematsu. "We apologise for any inconveniences this may cause for customers, as well as the parties involved".

▼ True to Sega's word, the once lavish website for Judge Eyes, which included extensive character profiles and screenshot collections, is now just a plain white background with the sales suspension statement. A grim situation all round, but what of Judgment's western release? A year later, copies of anime Kill Me Baby were pulled from circulation when voice actress Ai Takabe was arrested for cocaine possession.

Following the arrest of the actor, Judgment's publisher SEGA has issued a statement that the actor's arrest is "highly regrettable". All this fuss may seem a bit overblown to Western eyes, particularly given Taki is playing a mob boss in a video game for adults, but Japan has a very stringent anti-drug culture and accompanying laws. The game was scheduled for worldwide release on June 25.

On Twitter, Sega said it would also be deleting marketing tweets about the game. Taki also plays Frozen's Olaf in the Japanese edition of Kingdom Hearts III, so we'll see if Square Enix feel the need to take similar action themselves.

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