There’s a fine line between being pessimistic and progressive, and as of today, Capcom’s global head of R&D Keiji Inafune is dancing on it–hard.
Last year at Tokyo Game Show, Inafune flat out stated: “Japan is over. We’re done. Our game industry is finished.” Inafune had some equally harsh words to say at this year’s TGS as well, as he stepped out to say: “I look around Tokyo Games Show, and everyone’s making awful games. Japan is at least five years behind. Capcom is barely keeping up. I want to study how westerners live, and make games that appeal to them.”
Pretty rough stuff, but Inafune wasn’t all about ranting, as he had some advice to impart on the Japanese gaming industry: appeal to a global audience, which means do more than just “turning eyes blue and changing the hair color.”
Inafune’s grievances also have the numbers to prove it, as Japan’s domestic game market has dropped 20% over the past 3 years–not a good sign.
Capcom and their neighboring publishers are already doing what they can to beat the trend by buying out Blue Castle in Canada and signing a deal with Ninja Theory in the UK. Another company making the same kind of shake-and-bake moves is Square Enix, making the huge commitment to buying up Eidos in an epic £84 million deal a while back.
Pretty riveting guy, that Inafune, but is he being a little too harsh and pessimistic? Shoot some thoughts over.