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Namco Bandai: Japanese developers are fighting back against

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"We've really taken an effort to go back to our roots."

Japanese developers are shunning "Western" design concepts and returning to their cultural roots, according to Namco Bandai's Hideo Baba, producer of the much-loved Tales RPG series. Good news if, like me, you think companies like Capcom need to stop obsessing over the buying habits of North American and European audiences.... read more

Namco Bandai: Japanese developers are fighting back against

Postby SilentDark » 22 Jan 2013, 13:48

For me at least this sounds like someone has finally gotten a clue in Japan. I buy JRPGs because of their eastern influence. Most people who fell in love with Resident Evil or Final Fantasy fell in love with the eastern flavor but now companies are so obsessed with pandering to the western crowd they lose what makes them special, makes them an alternative to Gearheads of War and the like.

Suteki da ne was a really beautiful song, an excellent theme for FFX, then X-2 came out and all the songs were translated into english (with mixed results)

Then by FF13 we get some third rate pop crap from Leona Lewis for the western release, the Japanese theme Kimi Ga Iru Kara was a superior song in every way but apparently we westerners are too stupid for Japanese songs. Because we couldn't possibly look up a translation for these things could we.

Squeenix, Capcom et al, you are Japanese, don't be ashamed of it, embrace it, you can offer us experiences that western developers cannot, and in many cases will not. Would a western developer have given us anything like Tales of Symphonia, The Last Story, Xenoblade Chronicles.

Heck Capcom, you tried to Westernise Sengoku Basara, tell me how exactly did that work out for you again?
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Re: Namco Bandai: Japanese developers are fighting back agai

Postby Sandbwoy » 22 Jan 2013, 21:18

Looking at the overall games market today, I think it's fair to say that Western games take up the majority of the scene. But Eastern games play an important role, just as they always have. Gaming wouldn't be what it is today if it wasn't for the Eastern world, that's where gaming really took off to begin with!
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Re: Namco Bandai: Japanese developers are fighting back agai

Postby CunningSmile » 23 Jan 2013, 09:35

The Japanese mindset has always been one of reacting to problems by taking less risks which is why their games developers have lost ground the last decade. As sales figures dropped due to lack of real innovation they reacted by innovating even less, a fact compounded by their studio culture of relying on one key figure to give all direction (who sooner or later will run out of ideas and just keep recycling)

Now the Japanese economy has picked up a bit they're starting to get braver again so we may start to see a few new tricks.
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Re: Namco Bandai: Japanese developers are fighting back agai

Postby SilentDark » 23 Jan 2013, 16:12

Although can you really blame Japanese developers for this mindset? Franchises like Call of Duty are basically a publisher's licence to print money, games that dare to be different such as Okami, which failed twice, get left out in the cold.

It's part economics with people less likely to take chances on a game at a time when we all have to tighten our belts, but it's also part unwillingness for people to try something different. We all like to complain about how much the latest itteration of a franchise sucks because it either doesn't innovate enough, or innovates so much as to be virtually unrecognisable to the fanbase. Most people however will not write off a franchise when it continually disappoints them. Or boycott a company that continually shoves out yearly updates, or sequels with very little to distinguish it from its predecessor.

Slightly off on a tangent I know, but hopefully we will have less of companies from the east trying to bring us a western approach they don't really understand and that this will encourage more diversity in the market.
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