If legendary Mega Man designer and current Capcom bigwig Keiji Inafune is to be believed, the Japanese games industry is dieing on its arse. Speaking to The New York Times at the Tokyo Games Show last week, Inafune commented: “I look around and everyone’s making awful games; Japan is at least five years behind.” Ouch. For more damningwords onthe industry from Keiji’s homeland, read below.
Not content with savaging the work of his fellow countrymen at TGS, Inafune even went onto cast a critical eye on his own company. With the Resident Evil man admitting: “Capcom is barely keeping up.” It’s clear some senior designers at the company are now concerned about making games for a more Western audience. And Inafune added: “I want to study how Westerners live, and make games that appeal to them.”
Above: You can thank a Canadian developer for the copious amount of mankini action in Dead Rising 2
This might explain the growing trend of Japanese developers outsourcing some of their properties to the West, like in the case of Dead Rising 2, which was made by Blue Castle Games in Canada. Later in his interview the Capcom designer also poured the hate sauce on PS2 brawler Shadow of Rome, highlighting the fact that Japanese games needed more than superficial changes to make them more suitable for the West. He said: Westernizing a game takes more than turning eyes blue and changing the hair colour.
With most of the megaton, multi million-selling titles (like Modern Warfare 2 and the Halo series) now coming from the West, it’s no doubt a worrying time for the Japanese games industry. If we just focus on Capcom, it’s arguable that some of its biggest hitters this generation in Devil May Cry 4 and Resident Evil 5 have been out of date and grasping onto last-gen mechanics.
Above: Lets be honest, Resi 5 was pretty much just a carbon copy of a title from 2005
Anyhoo, we’d love to hear your thoughts on the matter. Why not write them down in word form and post them in our comments section below.
Sep 20, 2010