Sony Imagesoft was a video game publisher that operated from 1989 to 1995 and was located in California. It was established in January 1989 in Los Angeles, California, as a subsidiary of the Japan-based CBS/Sony Group (CSG) and initially named CSG Imagesoft Inc. Focus at the beginning was on marketing games exclusively for Nintendo consoles.
After Sony had set up its North American Sony Electronic Publishing division in April 1991, Imagesoft operated as Sony Imagesoft Inc. The new logo is a blue square that is diagonally divided by a feather emitting sparks of light from its tip. The first games sporting the new logo were Altered Space for Game Boy and movie tie-in Hudson Hawk for NES and Game Boy.
Other releases were localizations of SNES games previously developed for Sony Music Entertainment (Japan) and published under the Epic/Sony Records brand: Extra Innings and Smart Ball, both published in 1992.
On May 20, 1992 Sega of America and Sony Electronic Publishing announced a partnership to create content for Sega's consoles under the direction of Imagesoft. Besides Sega's cartridge-based Genesis and GameGear consoles the partnership targeted the upcoming Sega CD peripheral. Among the first titles released for Sega's consoles after the announcement were Sewer Shark and Hook. Sewer Shark, initially released exclusively to Sega CD, is a rail-shooter that years earlier was shelved as part of the ill-fated NEMO project. The Hook video games are tie-ins to the Spielberg feature film Hook that premiered in December 1991 and was produced by Sony owned TriStar Pictures. Ports of the video game for Sega platforms are based on the SNES game published earlier by Imagesoft. The Sega CD version was enhanced with better cut scenes with voice actors and digital stills and featured music from the film soundtrack.
Starting in July 1995, just two months prior to the release of the PlayStation console in Western markets, Sony Electronic Publishing restructured and renamed its divisions. All videogame marketing from Sony Imagesoft was folded into Sony Computer Entertainment of America (SCEA), with about 100 employees transferred from Santa Monica to Foster City. The video game business of Sony Imagesoft was merged with the product development branch of Sony Computer Entertainment of America and became Sony Interactive Studios America which would later be renamed to 989 Studios.
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- The earliest reviews available online are from March 1993
- Philips Teams With Propagande. In: Billboard, June 24, 1995, page 54
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- Last Action Hero - Sega Mega CD unseen64.net
- Notebooks. In: Television Digest with Consumer Electronics, Vol. 33, No. 21, Pg. 19. - "...Psygnosis, founded in 1984, published noteworthy "Lemmings" software series, and has developed 2 titles -- "Bram Stoker's Dracula" and "Last Action Hero" -- for Sega CD."
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