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Strike Witches 2 “$50 an Episode”

sanya-eila-yuri-combo-by-kurashima-tomoyasu

The pricing for the Strike Witches 2 discs has been announced, and even desperate lolicon are aghast at the pound of flesh demanded for each episode of government approved loli pantsu/nopan goodness.

The Blu-ray limited edition (and there is no normal Blu-ray edition) is to retail at ¥9,240, whilst the lowly DVD can be had at ¥7,665 limited and ¥6,090 for the peasant edition.

There are 6 discs in total, suggesting 12 episodes for the series.

DVD prices for Japanese anime releases are normally kept high on the basis that total revenues are higher from selling a small number of hideously expensive discs to a tiny niche of creepy anime watchers than from selling a slightly larger number of cheap discs to the same tiny niche of creepy anime watchers – sound business sense it would seem.

However, even by these standards Strike Witches is commanding a premium – the same season sees BD editions of Amagami and Sekirei at ¥7,140, although Railgun seems to have it beat with a single $70 episode due.

Fortunately, miserly or bankrupt American pauper fans can perhaps expect an eventual overseas release at a fraction of the price.

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112 Comments

  • Anonymous says:

    …you know what… this pisses me off… it pissed me off so much that I’m about to go download it via bit torrent just for them being such dumbasses on the price, it’s obviously not going to sell very much anyway so might as well : )

  • Anonymous says:

    Seeing as their target market is all too willing to pay an arm and a leg, I see this ploy coming through. Should they even try to ship this as such outside Japan, they’d be boarded before they even leave shore. Actually, they’d be boarded anyway, export or no.

  • As I think a few other people have said, the big difference between the west and Japan is that the shows are aired on TV first. That makes a huge difference to the leap of faith us western anime fans have to make every time we buy a DVD. Then there’s the issue of release dates, my shitty country (you have one guess) didn’t get the first season of Haruhi until November 2008!

    But anyways, even being a dirty gaijin who watches subbed anime and translated H-games I am, I still spent over $1k on anime merchanise/H-games/blu-rays when I was there.

  • Ghostchase says:

    I’d rather pay more for the Japanese version than less for the North America version. “Creepy” as a generalization of all anime watches, or just the ones that watch Strike Witches?

  • Anonymous says:

    And what everyone FAILS to realize is that These are made for broadcast TV shows… They make their money from the advertisers that sponsor the shows… I know you’ve all seen the sponsor announcement at the beginning of every anime. The DVD market is just bonus cash for them and they are only out to sell to the hardcore collector. For that matter the International market is just extra money for them too. They do not base their marketing on DVD sales, and they damn sure aren’t relying on US sales… Most of that money goes to Funimation, Sentai, NIS, Crunchyroll, etc who pay a one time set lisencing fee for the show (and problably a small royalty for sales). If they couldn’t make their profit off the initial broadcast run then they wouldn’t bother airing it in the first place.

  • Anonymous says:

    I approve of this. If stupid otaku are moronic enough to pay this price, then they deserve to get ripped off. And if they’re not THAT moronic then stupid company will lose a lot of money because no-one is paying their rip-off prices, so when they try to release a WORTHWHILE anime they’ll have to do so at a more reasonable price. Either way we win.

  • Anonymous says:

    Japan’s anime industry has been fucking their customers up the ass for years, this is not the first series which has charged 50 dollars an episode. AIC has done it in the past and the titles they’re done it to, they STILL charge that price.

  • That is utterly absurd. Down the road the production company will tell their sob story about how they didn’t make enough money and that pirates ruined all their sales. The sheer incompetence of these companies never ceases to astound me.

    • Anonymous says:

      No it may not be as absurd as you think. Do you really think there is such a market that by lowering price it will increase profit?

      Im such there are a LOT of anime watchers in the US. Why with their dirt cheap prices does it not become high sellers?

  • .. well they can see it for free(ish) on tv when it airs.. where the US and other countries can’t make that claim.. some are shown on tv, but that is getting to be less and less..

    its economics.. you sell your wares at a price that people will buy.. if they keep on buying at $50 a episode.. then why come down in price?? as said.. they can finance a whole series on 10,000 discs sold.. instead of having to sell 50,000 at a lesser price.. so they do what works.. why that price model won’t work in the us is that.. No One would buy it at that price! so they have to sell it cheap. and thats the series that they think will make money, and all the half=ass series that never make it to the US.

    Macross is a good one, all kind of legal BS to where froniter can’t be sold in the us… so we’re left with subs.. owell, they can make alot of money on it, especially with the transformers crowd, but they don’t..

  • starsplash says:

    This is why piracy is such a big issue and justifiable. You have major companies charging shit rediculous prices for a limited amount of people that is not even worth that much in the first place. Just rediculous. If companies want to do something about piracy, they would price things reasonably than to charge high prices for almost nothing and then spending money on piracy investigations.

    • Anonymous says:

      No it is not and never justifiable. If one feels that things are not worth it, then they simplify dont bother.

      The price over there is somewhat base on the available consumer base. The publisher may not be totally right, but that is the range that they presume. Unless some big company/society acceptance of it changes nobody will want to risk bankruptcy on their flagship titles.

      What here is, is not a problem of prices first, is the problem of personal morals on the front.

      • i pirate pc games because of drm. i have bought the games and i still use pirate copies because of some drm schemes, like ubisoft requiring Internet to play single player.

        i would rather own older nintendo and sega games, but im not paying more than the game costed when it came out to get it.

        and with steam, i wait for sales to get games. but even than, sometimes i cant get the games to play and have to resort to piracy to get the game to work.

        piracy isnt the demon you are thinking of, but its the only alternative for allot of people.

        • you have never had a drm scheme have a confect with windows forcing a reinstall of windows than have you?

          if a hacker can easily remove drm and make the pirate version superior to the non pirate version, than drm is unnecessary.

          there are some types that are ok, like steam, but than there are other types like ubisoft forcing online for single player only games, which is inexcusable.

    • no.

      remember how anime is treated in japan, and what can happen to you if you like it.

      lets say a anime on tv pulls in 300k viewers, of them 20k are willing to buy at butt fuck prices.

      if you lower the price, you may increase sales, but will it make up for the loss in the hard core market?

      and remember in america you may be seen as wired for liking a cartoon, or immature, but you dont get hospitalized or tormented to the point of wanting to kill yourself. how many people are willing to risk that for a dvd?

  • sosoueme8th says:

    another comments from 2ch

    “how about we’ll have national seclusion for all the otaku industries? let’s ban all the animes and mangas go outside of japan”

    “what, are you crazy? foreign market makes nice profits, too. and think of all the otakus outside of japan”

    “but thanks to that western countries, we’re having manga ban and loli ban. and what the industries are gaining is small profit. you know manga profit from america + europe is just 35% of domestic profit, right?”

    “crazy, but find no problem. the industries can survive by domestic sell alone anyway. with stop of exports, we’ll no longer have national problem and all the crazy bans”

    • Anonymous says:

      “but thanks to that western countries, we’re having manga ban and loli ban. and what the industries are gaining is small profit. you know manga profit from america + europe is just 35% of domestic profit, right?”

      licensing and importation of anime and manga has nothing to do with that. blaming anime/manga on that is like blaming GTA for what some little shit did.

        • Anonymous says:

          master-evil

          and That is what ideally it will be like. The reality is strongly different. What started on the west is one of the problems happening on japanese soil. The banning event become a serious and totally a reality problem after the west get into.

          Not saying the japanese themselves are not a source of their own problem.

          The involvement of the west only seems to make it worst especially in America or maybe add UK. you really are way under estimate the ability of such groups to apply pressure. As open as the culture of amine, mangas and games in japan it is. It is still very much a half openly taboo to themselves even.

        • I CAN

          in japan all anime plays on tv first, aside from oav and movies.

          they get the content for FREE first, and if you like it you can buy it. the dvd may have less censorship and be a higher quality.

          in america, we have 2 paragraphs if that to go on, and are told to pay 30$ a disc (this is how it was a few years ago, dont know how much changed sense). and i think funimation is the only company offering the first dvd of episodes free on line streaming.

          you see i never understood how the fuck blurays and blu ray burners sold so well in japan until i remembered how much dvds fucking cost there.

          and its not just the anime market that get fucked, its every market that sells discs.

          a 200$ burner, and a 20$ disc that can hold 2 hours makes the price the fuck up when it comes to just 1 season of an anime.

        • sosoueme8th says:

          alright then, i got your point.
          but i don’t think japanese goverment can do that, since they’re only a pet of west after WW2, so the political pressure huge country can be fatal.

          the citizens did their best, though.

          oh well, thanks for your time, i learned something.
          but let’s end this, this is going nowhere.

        • master-evil says:

          Will sorry i didn’t know, i hear knows i dont exactly live in the USA. AND YOU YOURSELF just said it not our faults but moral fags. and you know how many bans have been attempt on media in the US ? people forgot when moral fags went after music artist like eminem then there was the orinigal mortal kombat, then GTA and then manhunt, ALL tried ALL failed bur it is wrong for anybody (not only a country) to try and push there beliefs and culture on another. You can’t judge that on the base on one or two series there many series that have many blown sales away and again theres pirates FOR EVERYTHING, doesn’t mean it right it just there and last but not least if we are talking about the US they would fight back and ask them “why are you asking me to change my culture ?” you know how many countries have tried pulling that shit, example american had so domestic problems with cuba at one point, did they change ? If you really want to to stop the ban then stop trying to push the subject away and try to work together to go and tell them “go fuck yourself”, if you express that it part of the culture and express it is your (japan) right to have the content then who are they to tell you what to do, example countries which have arrange marriages with children tell them that and they can only argue and bad talk them nothing else.

        • sosoueme8th says:

          it’s John Thomas who tried to ban the contents by forcing Hatoyama at first

          and yes, it’s not the people’s fault, but why would the industry takes huge risk to release their stuff abroad? the risk of moral fags.

          and that certain countries doesn’t matter. they just banned GTA to be released in their own country.
          what’s the matter is here that, America, the stronger country that’s forcing Japan to ban the content.

          and can you tell me why 50$ per disk sells more in japan and 50$ per complete series sells less in america?
          any other reason other than pirates?

          and you didn’t answer my last question, “what will americans do in that case”

        • sosoueme8th says:

          it’s the UK feminist started it, and US government forced it.
          and are those ton of countries forcing US to ban making those games? no, they just stopped selling those games in their own country.

          and you told me making it cheaper makes more customers.

          then can you tell me why 50$ per disk sell more in japan and 50$ per series sells less internationally?

          any reason other than pirates?
          money? no, US is wealthier, right?

          and please answer my question.
          “what will americans do in that case?”

        • master-evil says:

          slow down there cowboy, THE GOVERNMENT is not banning your content, IT IS MORAL FAGS that are, i never once heard any member of the US government, go after japanese entertainment i hear feminist and other groups and that isn’t a proper example because another country doesn’t have the right to tell a country what they can and can not do, if you want to blame someone blame the REAL people targetting your media not the country that does not know whats going on.

          PLUS look at tons of countries that have banned certain american games,(GTA and MAN HUNT) but you know what they simple move on and continue to sell.

        • sosoueme8th says:

          “thats like saying we should stop selling food because people can copy it’s recipe”

          that’s completely a different story. it’s more like “we should stop selling food ’cause people steals it and eat free”

          that’s how international market is small compare to japanese market.

          okay, so let’s make it this way.

          america has a game called COD and they sold a lot within america with extremely high price.

          while it was released in japan with low price, still japanese people used p2p to pirate its game and didn’t give american game insdustry much of benefit.

          now the japanese government caught the COD’s bad attension, and is telling US government to ban violence and blood from their game.

          …now what will americans do now?
          are they stupid enough to keep releasing their game at japan?

        • master-evil says:

          Isn’t the international market still making something ? so what your saying is “why care about the millions of fans from away because of pirates ?” thats like saying we should stop selling food because people can copy it’s recipe. PIRATES WILL ALWAYS EXIST! and so what america sells anime for cheaper, if it hurts so much why don’t others follow example ? If they were cheaper more people would buy it a given fact and from your comment it sounds to me like your saying, “screw the anime fans from everywhere else all that matter is where it comes from” not everyone is behind those retarded bans and a lot of people international respect otakus (i said a lot not all).

        • sosoueme8th says:

          sorry, but sounds still wrong since international market is making few benefits and some are having deficit financing.

          you know hollywood retreated dvd and blueray sells from south korea, since they’re too pirating, and hollywood’s firm is in the red.

          and since western countries are giving international problem and deficit financing to anime industries, you never thought will shut down it’s market like what happened in south korea?

          yes, you watch anime on youtube, downloading from P2P and there will be a day without anime, manga on abroad.

          not only that, the country can restrict it’s illegal uploads. anime can completely be “only for japan” stuff

        • master-evil says:

          Common sense (i think i would be asking to much) would tell them that if the international market is closed off and anime becomes exclusive to japan only. THAT would not only be a major lost of revenue but it would more or less kill the anime market all together. Basing the fact that out of the millions of otakus and teenagers who watch anime in japan, only a few thousand could afford these prices. A lot of money comes from international support and otaku tourist bring in a lot ofcash, of course, if you close off the market to those around the world, not only would they loss a big consumer base but it would spoil the reputation of japan and the japanese. It like giving donation to someone and then taking away the donation because you don’t like them. the one receiving the donation does not look like a asshole you would.

  • Maybe the future of anime is not to be found on discs any more.

    In the last two years I have found damn near nothing of dvd format downloads on the usual download sources. Lots of dvds with subs, but rarely actual retail disc format uploads.

    Maybe the time has come to realize that physical media might have lost it's worth? If you watch anime only when you can buy the disc, I guess you might have a problem.

    I've got an enormous stash of anime on dvd, but in the last two years I have been really only downloading subs that were not retail dvd sourced.
    Usually as the stuff has been airing.

    50 bucks a disc is a good way to ensure the market dries up even more.

  • sosoueme8th says:

    comments from 2ch

    “foreigners are just pirates. they can buy the whole anime series with less than 100$, but they but have real less sales compare to japan sale alone. and now they’re blaming manga-scanlation for the manga price”

    “you know foreigners. they ignore copyrights, translate h-games, changing the credit into their names and selling it online. they got no respect for the creators”

    “aren’t we pirating american FTP games, too?”

    “we are, but american game market is still stable here. unlike anime market there. it’s nearly collapsing”

    • Anonymous says:

      “we are, but american game market is still stable here. unlike anime market there. it’s nearly collapsing”

      Since when has Japan ever given a shit if video games, anime or manga succeeds outside of Japan? What a joke. It Japan gave a shit, their shit wouldn’t come region locked.

    • Foreigners are pirates because they refuse to put up with obscene overpricing (as seen in the demise of Bandai Visual USA)?

      And when has anyone ever translated an h-game and sold it (aside from the small licensing business which naturally is approved by the creators)? There’s been amateur translations, but they give their patches away for free. They translate so that the game can be played by English speakers. Commonly, they vainly request that people not pirate the game.

  • master-evil says:

    The price “per episode” is ridiculous, theres 12 episode (the 6 DVDs) after you buy all thats $600.
    The price of living is high (depending on the country you live), $600 can get you food or pay your light bill(can’t surf the web and watch anime without electricity) if the prices were REASONABLE anime companies would make more profit.
    Reasonable price = the loyal fan or otakus can buy it
    more loyal customers buying = greater profitable.
    greater profitable= everyone is happy.

    but if the price is to high.

    1) only those who can afford can pay for it
    2) the rest pirate it.
    3) they make less profits
    4) they blame pirates and the internet.

    If they follow other countries examples anime would be making shitloads compare to how much there making now with the price.

  • Azure Xuchilbara says:

    But for those delishush loli armpits, I wouldn’t mind…

    I’ve bought anime DVDs before (Kannagi – Nagi’s armpits~, Higurashi – Rika Fuurude’s armpits on the …) just for the high-def anime loli armpit exposure on my 50-inch HDTV…

    I can’t resist a DFC+Loli+Armpits combo…

    But I admit…I wish it was half the price since I have other hent–er, anime goods to buy…

  • Shippoyasha says:

    This is actually a pretty serious issue for anime fans in Japan though…

    I mean in America, entire DVD collections of 26 anime episodes goes for about $50-$60. And yet one episode costs $50 in Japan….. I mean that is insane.

  • Why does anybody pay this much?

    Guy A:”How about 50$ a episode”
    Guy B:”Isn`t that a bit much? What if no one buys it?”
    Guy A:”Nah Japanese Otakus are idiots, no matter how expensive they still buy it”
    Guy B:”Hmm.. i hope your right. Otherwise we might have to lower the pricetag after all.”
    *Otakus buying Blu-ray*
    Guy A:”All according to keikaku. *Starts evil laughter*
    Ha Ha Ha.”

    • lol, u r right
      I hope Funi will make it again – 50 bugs for the whole season
      Poor otakus 400 USD min. for 12 ep. – but these prices should force the companies to make good animes, who would pay so much for a bad one…

      • Firetribe says:

        *Across the Pacific*

        Guy A:”How about $5.50 an episode?”
        Guy B:”Umm… can we go lower?
        Guy A:”What?? I believe this price is reasonable compared to Japanese prices.”
        Guy B:”True, but…”
        Guy A:”But, nothing. With these prices and a larger fanbase, these will sell like hotcakes!.”
        *Sales are poor*
        Guy A: “Not according to keikaku.” *cries*
        Guy B: “Most fans are willing to pay near zero, if not zero itself.” ^^;

    • Not necessarily. The Strike Witches market is sufficiently small that even giving it away free would still mean only a tiny following. In these cases the best option may be to coax a portion of this small audience into buying at high prices, rather than offer low prices to a larger portion.

      • Anonymous says:

        That may work short term, but it greatly inhibits growth. If you want to grow a business, you need to bring in more people. You can’t do that well if the price of entrance is so high. All you are left with is the ultra-fanboys who will slowly bleed away as every season a handful of them realize that its just not worth it.

      • Very true. Anyone who claims that these companies would suddenly sell millions more discs and increase their profits tenfold by lowering the disc prices are absolute idiots. There is something called price elasticity, which basically tries to determine how much more or less a product will sell corresponding to a price increase or decrease.

        For example, let’s say you have a total of 100,000 people interested in buying your product, and only these 100k will buy it. Let’s say that if you price the product at 6k yen, 60% of those people will buy it. For every 2k you lower the price of the product, 20% more people will buy it and vice-versa for increasing the price.

        6k yen*60k= 3.6 million yen
        4k yen*80k= 3.2 million yen
        8k yen*40k= 3.2 million yen

        As you can see, by lowering the amount of the product, you already lose some profit. Anime like Strike Witches or any other late-night anime has a very small market. And like Artefact said, even if you gave it away for free, still only those 100k or so people will take it.

        These companies have found something that works for them, and the fans have shown that they’re fine with it. In fact, if it wasn’t for this business model, there would be no more anime, at least the kind that people around here like to watch. Just try to think about the whole picture before proclaiming crap like lol japan and otaku are idiots for paying these prices. If it wasn’t for them paying up, the R1 market would never have their precious $20 thinpacks with 50 episodes sets.

        • Haha, very true. Sure, I pulled the numbers out of my ass, but I wasn’t about to spend hours of my time researching the statistics and doing the actual calculations involved for a post on a place like Sankaku.

          This, however, doesn’t change the fact that price elasticity is very real (although much more complicated than my crude explanation made it out to be), and that it applies to the anime market very much in the way I described it. Late-night anime just doesn’t have the millions strong market that people seem to think it does, even in Japan. This means the studios and companies involved have to do anything and everything they can in order to turn a profit. And the current business model seems to be working for them, even if it is as backwards as many anime fans in the R1 market seem to think it is.

        • Anonymous says:

          Bloo, that’s just random predictions, not any better than fortune tellers and astrologists. Your numbers are not any more creditable than a set of numbers derived from a RNG.

        • Anonymous says:

          I don’t buy anime to watch it, I’ve already done that. The only reasons I purchase it is to put some money into the pockets of the producers for creating something I enjoy, and for the collectability factor. It’s basically a donation anyways, so the, “expense”, is rather irrelevant.

        • Anonymous says:

          @12:38 Anon

          You seem to be under the assumption that the people buying this are soley buying it for that 46 minutes (40 discluding OP and ED) of animation.

          There’s simply the fact of owning the discs – there is also the extras that come with limited edition versions.

          You also seem to be under the assumption that this niche market in Japan is sane. Who said this was the case?

        • Anonymous says:

          Yeah, but let me tell you that THE COMPANIES ALWAYS PRODUCE IN THE EQUILIBRIUM POINT. The explanation above is just why the price tag on this particular DVD. You are just describing the what if situation. That’s why you need the price elasticity in order to see if you are really working near or on the equilibrium point.

          Now let me remind you that we are talking about OTAKUS..not rational people. They are willing to pay the price of those DVD’s, that’s why they are selling them at that price. And yeah I know the cost of opportunity, but, think about it: What may be discarding in order to buy those dvd’s???. ANOTHER ANIME-MANGA-RELATED ITEM! so, in the end, their cost of opportunity only relies on what they want first, not on necesities.

          Of course I could be completely wrong, but otakus are a whole damn mysterious world. I wonder if I can make this the central topic of my economics thesis?

        • Anonymous says:

          Ah but you forget supply and demand and price equilibrium, at a certain point the price goes way past the price equilibrium and even less people are willing to pay that price thus the demand goes down. Assuming the consumer is rational, and all consumers are rational right? Right?.

          So you are telling me that you would pay 70 USD for thirty minutes of entertainment. Ever heard of the Cost Benefit Analysis skill use it some time it might help.

          These prices are ridiculous, any sane person would not purchase 30 minutes of entertainment for 70 bucks that is irrational.

        • Anonymous says:

          and to support this post: the supply and demand law.

          As bloob pointed out, the market for strike witches is pretty low. Because the are too few buyers, the dvd supply for SW must be low, and in consequence, the price must be high in order to receive some profit of it (to compensate the poor quantity of the potential buyers and the cost of production). The other way around, if the supplier starts making too much dvd’s, sure they can sell them at a low cost, but because of the small market, the people won’t buy all of them and thus, they keep stock, which in reallity, they are just loses.

          By combining this law and the price elasticity, the companies can “predict” how much they have to produce with a certain price tag in order to produce big fatty revenues.

          This also explains why limited editions and luxury stuff are highly priced.

      • The first season Strike Witches DVDs were Gonzo’s best selling discs ever. They sold for around 6800yen each, but were produced very poorly. There wasn’t even a paper insert inside the disc case let alone a book, and the plastic itself was very cheap low grade plastic. Really felt like they were made on the cheap. I know because I personally bought all six volumes. Blu-ray was already popular by then, but I assume Gonzo didn’t have the money to release them.

        The recommended price of the second season Blu-rays is expensive, but I see Amazon Japan has them for 6838 yen each. That’s quite an improvement to me.

      • how about making normal dvd’s normal priced but making the SE BD disks the price above? probalby the best way to make more money is to make it affordable to as many pockets as possible while keeping the reasons otakus’ want it intact

    • Ghost Dog says:

      I agree completely. I wouldn’t think less of anyone who gets this and other high priced anime off the internet with prices like that. You can buy full length blu-ray quality movies in the U.S. for a fraction of that cost.

      The anime industry will have to go through dramatic changes eventually, but for now some companies would rather milk their biggest fans dry to keep up revenue.

      • RopeXPantsu says:

        [quote]You can buy full length blu-ray quality movies in the U.S. for a fraction of that cost.[/quote]
        The market for hollywood movies and the market for anime are completely different. Thinking that anime and hollywood movies should be sold at similar prices JUST BECAUSE THEY BOTH COME ON A DISK is just stupid.

        • Lonesnipa says:

          I just wish to point out that the hollywood movies have to make more money then anime, due to the budgets for the movies themselves. So by any logic those should be more expensive. Anime is just as expensive as it is because they are trying to gouge every penny they can from the idiots who WILL pay 100 dollars for 2 episodes of an anime. I had a hard enough time paying 100 dollars for the origonal FMA anime.

        • Anonymous says:

          coz making a cartoon is as easy as swatting a fly.

          i understand that YOU don’t like animated drawing but please don’t belittle other people (hard) work.

          still, $100 is a lot for this anime, at least for me, pass.

          P.S. and you know how ironic your post is, weaboo-“kun”