This anime MMO could be 2024's biggest hit

Blue Protocol
(Image credit: Bandai Namco)

Blue Protocol, an anime MMO currently only available in Japan, has got off to a huge start that's setting it up for an even bigger worldwide release next year.

It's been a long time coming thanks to multiple delays, but Blue Protocol finally launched in Japan last week. According to a tweet from the game's official Japanese account (translated via Google), in its first seven days the MMO has drawn in more than 600,000 players, with a concurrent player count of more than 200,000.

It's that second figure that impresses me. Not many games are able to pull 200,000 concurrents, and while MMOs are better positioned than most genres to acquire that kind of playerbase, Blue Protocol's achievement here is particularly impressive for several reasons. First, this is a regional launch - the game isn't available outside Japan until next year; second, this is only a PC launch, with console support coming next year; and third, the game's performance is currently not great, encouraging some players to shed all their armor in an attempt to boost the framerate.

Assuming that latter issue is fixed in time for the worldwide launch next year, Blue Protocol is positioning itself for a massive full release. Any game pulling in those numbers is doing pretty well, but to do so on a platform-limited, regional release is seriously impressive.

Blue Protocol is coming West next year, although you should be able to check out a PC beta later in 2023. Backed by Amazon, which is developing a decent reputation for porting MMOs thanks to games like Lost Ark, the anime presentation probably isn't hurting its chances either. None of these factors translate to automatic success, but it'll definitely be worth keeping an eye on this one.

We might need an update to our list of the best MMORPGs pretty soon.

Ali Jones
News Editor

I'm GamesRadar's news editor, working with the team to deliver breaking news from across the industry. I started my journalistic career while getting my degree in English Literature at the University of Warwick, where I also worked as Games Editor on the student newspaper, The Boar. Since then, I've run the news sections at PCGamesN and Kotaku UK, and also regularly contributed to PC Gamer. As you might be able to tell, PC is my platform of choice, so you can regularly find me playing League of Legends or Steam's latest indie hit.