Blu-Ray region coding scheme announced
Masakazu Honda @ ITMedia reports about the final review version of the AACS contents management system for HD formats such as Blu-ray Disc and HD-DVD. AACS LA consists of IBM, Sony, Toshiba, Warner, Intel, Microsoft, Matsushita, and Disney.
+ Though Warner was eager to abolish region code and there were no objection until the final decision, film companies not in AACS LA opposed it and it was decided that region code stays in BD-ROM. But it undergoes reorganization. Basically, Japan and other East Asian countries except for China are moved to Region 1. The new region codes are
Region 1: North America, South America, East Asia except for China (India, Japan, Korea, Thailand, Malaysia etc.)
Region 2: Europe and Africa
Region 3: China, Russia and other countries
Of course, the gaming blogs are wondering if this will apply to PS3 games as well. As for where I am, Singapore's a bit of a weird state, because we're technically in the same "game region" as Japan, although not many people speak or read Japanese, and we're in a separate "Region 3" when it comes to DVD movies. However, since Japanese Xbox games almost always have an English language option, Japanese Xboxes are distributed and sold here more actively than PS2s or GameCubes, which are basically all imports or mods so that local buyers can play NTSC U/C games. Even the local Sony stores don't really pimp the PS2, although the PSP has a lot of visibility.
At any rate, this is probably somewhat good news for those North American fans of Japanese games. This includes the entire editorial staff of Game Eaters.