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Submitted by Cairnius 1945d ago | opinion piece

Should Japanese Games...Be Less Japanese?

The root of whatever problems exist in the Japanese gaming industry may have to do with the fact that Japanese games don't appeal enough to the worldwide gamer. Japanese games may be too Japanese. (Culture, Industry, Keiji Inafune, Tokyo Game Show)

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Masamori Sumimura  +   1945d ago | Well said
''Part of the reason that Metroid: Other M is catching critical flak may be that it turns Samus into a woman who requires male approval or permission to act strongly, which is very much a Japanese cultural stereotype, and it did not serve the game well.''

No it's not.Soldiers who are at the bottom of the chain have to go by orders given to them by superiors. that has nothing to do with japanese culture. This is MILITARY structure in every country out there.

" The anime-esque characters in Final Fantasy XIII and other JRPG’s are too preposterous to take seriously. The fact that we even have a genre called "JRPG's" may be indicative of the problem''

If japanes games Were LESS and less japanese then they wouldnt feel like japanese games.I dont want to play a Final fantasy game with Characters looking like Kratos and Marcus phenix on Steroids with AMERICAN stuff going in there.

I mean if you guys cant stand japanese games then why the hell are you playing them? they're japanese games! So you have to accept that you'll see Anime characters and over the top action because this is what makes japanes games so fun to us.

It means that Japanese developers need to add to their lexicon and take efforts to make other kinds of games, as well. We're seeing baby steps in this direction with the Devil May Cry reboot being developed with English studio Ninja Theory.''

You want to know what happens when Japanese devs try and make a game to please the west? You get crap like Quatum theory but I bet the writer would have enjoyed this since he seems like the type of guy that only enjoy shooters.

I swear it's a bunch of bloody meat eater gun shooting call of duty loving guys that are making these articles lately.
#1 (Edited 1945d ago ) | Agree(35) | Disagree(6) | Report | Reply
saint_john_paul_ii  +   1945d ago
you should e-mail him with your response so you can shut him up.
#1.1 (Edited 1945d ago ) | Agree(14) | Disagree(0) | Report | Reply
darkcharizard  +   1945d ago
Thy Kingdom Come.
visualb  +   1945d ago
I strongly agree
the bitmob seem to be quite retarded. all of the points of this article have huge contradictions, like them proposing for JRPG games to be less japanese...that would defeat the purpose of their existance.

japanese games should remain japanese, thats part of what gave them their style and vibe

I felt dumber after reading this article...
Redempteur  +   1945d ago
inafune is everything wrong with capcom these days.

the 180° turn of lost planet
bionic commando
dark (A)void
NOt everyone should copy the western model while making games .. it seems like he doesn't even realise how many japanese games inspired those very western sby their quality ( chrono trigger,zelda , mario, castelvania to note a few )

i'm fine with both worlds because i just like good games but please don't kill the japanese games with something they aren't ...
they are still the best with dongeon rpgs , still the best at fighting games , still the best at action games ( technical ...see Devil May cry3, bayonnetta , vanquish ), still the best at Trpgs and Srpgs ( tactical ogre , disgaea , FF tactics , valkyria chronicles )

Japanese games are fine.. don't kill japanese games because you want to appeal to some market that don't care about you .. everything you manage to do is a bad copy of what you're copying ( see bionic commando )

And if you acquire studios , let them work, see how deus ex was keep alive and well by squareenix ..

end rant /
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clarkdef  +   1945d ago
Hey you up there please don't say BC is bad because I love both games they are very solid.
Theonik  +   1945d ago
Hehe... He made a comment this E3 about how every game there sucked and how the Japanese industry is lagging behind the west ;P
xino  +   1945d ago
@Masamori Sumimura typical otaku fanboy
While I agree with some of the things you say.

But still using an excuse for Western heroes looking all beefed up is long dead old and what a typical otaku fanboy normally uses.
Does Niko (GTA 4) look beefed up?
Does Cole (Infamous) look beefed up?
Does crysis (Crysis) guy look beefed up?
Does Alan (Alan Wake) look beefed up?
How many japanese do you see look all beefed up in Tokyo? exactly, that is why you see skinny and fat characters in Japanese games.

stop the nonsense cliche over used trash. Epic's games character design is always in a form of beefed up characters, if any suckers do follow up their games since Unreal Tournament 2003, you'd see from there on their characters started getting beefed up.

As I won't read the article because it's another trash written article from BitMob who I dislike. The title itself is originally stupid and poorly defined! It's like saying "Bees to stop having sharp tail butt". Then how the hell are they suppose to nourish flower pollens or attack and defend!???

What BitMob needs to do is write an article about Japanese Games having more culture rather than using the same over used method!
This is why Japanese games industry will not evolve and are falling behind so bad!

And believe me, Ninja Theory are doing the right thing in changing Dante for DMC! A reboot means OVERALL REDESIGN and Refreshed! Why would you want Halo Reboot and Master Chief looks the same or Spartans look the same!? then it shouldn't be called a reboot. One thing about Japanese games industry is that they dislike Change. Not only them but majority of gamers dislike change. And change is good, it helps us evolve better!

Quantum Theory's result was back fired at Tecmo! They must have stereotyped western gamers thinking we love heroes who are beefed up (typical otaku fanboy excuse), and it's an action 3rd person shooter.
Neckbear  +   1945d ago
First off- stereotypes go for both sides.

Speehz maruhnz for Western games.

Girly men for Japanese games.

Both are very, VERY wrong. There are alot of examples that kill those stereotypes.

Second, my god, are you telling me a studio that is known BAD GAMEPLAY and CASUALIZED HACK N' SLASHERS can make a GOOD DMC?


Third, because I, or he likes Japanese games, it means he's a goddamn weaboo?

Believe me, while I like Japanese games, I despise Japanese culture and language. With the bottom of my heart. And I fucking hate mindless weaboos as much as I hate people who say LOL ITS JAPANESE ITS BAD HURR DURR COD7 WILL PWN ALL.

I like both Western and Japanese games, but hell, I just like GOOD games.

I feel like this pointless Western vs Japan shit is getting old. VERY old.

And while I don't mind companies going global rather than staying in Japan, I think they should stay true to their roots. At least a part of it should.
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Baka-akaB  +   1945d ago
Xino you are doing the same things here you accuse other off ...

Like Neckbear said , there are stereotypes from both sides . While there are obviously issues within quite a few studios , it just so happen to be trendy to rag on japanese games , with anything positive being conveniently ignored or brushed aside as unimportant .
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visualb  +   1945d ago
lol @ person blaming one for stereotyping by referring him through stereotype
xino  +   1944d ago
sometimes stereotype can be true, because it is true
If you think stereotyping is wrong, then you are still living in a fantasy dream land and I demand you wake the fark up.

Stereotype can be rude but you can't escape it because it proves the truth.

Tell me, how many Japanese do you see look beefed up? or even Chinese? they are rare who love going gym in Japan while some westerners prefer the gym, isn't that why you see them in movies.

I won't further comment, if you are mature and ready to have a discuss read the link above, if not don't bother and keep up the Political correctness.
tinybigman  +   1945d ago
simply answer
lightningsax  +   1945d ago
Your stuff's in quotes, mine isn't:

"No it's not.Soldiers who are at the bottom of the chain have to go by orders given to them by superiors. that has nothing to do with japanese culture. This is MILITARY structure in every country out there."

Chain-of-command stuff is all well and good, but it felt much more like these types of military ideas (PTSD included) were used as plot devices to make Samus more submissive and afraid. Considering the canon that's been set up before it, it was a bit of an affront to the strong, unflinching Samus of old.

"If japanes games Were LESS and less japanese then they wouldnt feel like japanese games.I dont want to play a Final fantasy game with Characters looking like Kratos and Marcus phenix on Steroids with AMERICAN stuff going in there."

I personally agree with you, but that has absolutely nothing to do with the industry's current state, which has to do with sales. Gold. Cash money. Not a niche market to which you and I subscribe.

"I mean if you guys cant stand japanese games then why the hell are you playing them? they're japanese games! So you have to accept that you'll see Anime characters and over the top action because this is what makes japanes games so fun to us."

That's the problem. What do you mean by "you?" It can't be the global market that Japan needs to shoot for. They're not playing Japanese games. That's why this discussion is happening. The "Us" you're referring to is a speck on the global market. To games companies these days, we're the film industry's analogue of non-American documentary film fans.

"You want to know what happens when Japanese devs try and make a game to please the west? You get crap like Quatum theory but I bet the writer would have enjoyed this since he seems like the type of guy that only enjoy shooters."

No. Japan hasn't done the Western thing right yet. That's why this writer wouldn't enjoy QT, and neither should you. It requires a much bigger time and money investment, which is what people like Inafune are talking about.

"I swear it's a bunch of bloody meat eater gun shooting call of duty loving guys that are making these articles lately."

Change "making these articles" to "buying lots of games" and you've got it. It's sad, I hate it, but that's the way it is. It's time to wake up.
#1.5 (Edited 1945d ago ) | Agree(3) | Disagree(4) | Report | Reply
baker_boi  +   1944d ago
I don't think "Japanese games" are sold to a niche market because japan has been the leading seller of all things Video game for the last 25 years(we Americans are the largest consumers).

The fact that you're making a distinction between games produced in Japan where in the past no one used to, it's a testament to the state of American video game biogtry. Or whatever you'd like to call it.

All of a sudden when first person shooters start to fall in massive numbers on home consoles, the American video game industry is leading by leaps and bounds?

Well, how about this; Lets take ALL the Japanese studios out of the industry and see how many games you have on the market each year.

The 1985-2005 era of gaming would have been NON-EXISTENT. After the gaming crash in America I know everybody is happy to see something, ANYTHING come out of American studios worth a damn(because most have been coming out of UK/European Studios) but yall need to chill out with the disrespect...

Niche market, ha! I can't recall the number of games I've bought over the years, including millions of others.

I'll tell you what the real problem is; The same guys who used to only buy sports or fighting games jumped on the FPS bandwagon (and the skin-heads who bought the original X-BOX).

And them being the type who picked at any who watched an "anime" were so happy to have a "serious" game they started this "American Games" bullshit.

It started back in the original X-BOX days. It's why Halo is popular now and why FPS's have flooded the damn market.

To ask someone to destroy their cultural influence on their own products is more than insulting, but no one ever asks the Western based studios to make their games more "Japanese" to sell it in the east.

So forget all that bullshit about "they havent made a good western game yet", they fucking can't make a "western" game, and we cant make no fucking "japanese" game.

I'm reeeaaaally tired of hearing this right about now. Their games, the way they are right now, still sell well, and no amount of white men with guns as the lead characters will dramatically change those numbers.

None of their games will EVER do Halo or Call of Duty numbers. In fact no other game created by any studio has done those numbers except Mario and Pokemon...INTENSELY "JAPANESE" GAMES!

It's not even about the type of game it is, it's about the circumstance surrounding their popularity. And you cant recreate that thrill again. Though it wont stop them from trying I suppose.
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lightningsax  +   1944d ago
Wow, bigotry? You're talking to a dude who's on his second playthrough of Eternal Sonata and his first on Mother 3. Loving them both. My most anticipated game of the holiday season is Pac-Man CE DX. There's no hate there whatsoever, but there are cultural differences between different areas of the globe that need to be acknowledged so far as they exist, if that's what you're referring to in the first place (re: Metroid: Other M.)

Look, people didn't make a distinction between Japanese and Western games in the past because it wasn't relevant. Like you said, everything was from Japan from 85-05. Who had to distinguish? Now, Japan only covers 10% of the games market. Market. I'm talking about money, I'm not talking about personal preference or quality.

As for Japanese studios making a great Western-style game? There definitely have been instances. Demon's Souls. That thing has more D&D in its blood than anything other game I've played in a long time. The problem is that it's not the norm. The problem is that money (again, money, money, money) isn't being put into the awesome kinds of games that could be created if Call of Duty money was given to an Inafune or Mikami or a Suda 51 joint. I'm hoping beyond all hope for what would wind up making your day in the games industry.

It's not bigotry, it's numbers. Seriously, I could replace my entire post with synonyms for currency. Does that get my point across?
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Blaine  +   1945d ago
"I swear it's a bunch of bloody meat eater gun shooting call of duty loving guys that are making these articles lately."

That's the problem, to me. This isn't an article, it's an opinion piece. I don't give a shit about the opinion of some idiot who wants Japanese games to be less Japanese. In fact, I don't give a shit about most people's opinions.

I'm on N4G for the NEWS. All I want are the articles that pertain to upcoming games. News, previews, delays, etc.; not Top 10s, opinion pieces, or speculative pieces. I wish N4G had filter options, so that the front page would only show news articles. Hell, I already have a user account, how hard would it be for the site to give us filter preferences?

(Before someone says "Why are you here if you don't want opinion pieces?" Well... good point. I just needed a soapbox.)
n to the b  +   1945d ago
I don't think the problem is opinion pieces in and of themselves. it's just that there are way too many SH1T opinion pieces posted to n4g IMO.
Blaine  +   1944d ago
Agreed, but
who's to say who's opinion is shit and who's is worthy? ;)

Compromise: opinions of developers are welcome. If Jaffy wants to voice himself on a subject, I'll gladly read it. Otherwise, chances are very slim it's going to be a constructive read.
EYEamNUMBER1  +   1945d ago
i actually enjoy japanese games the way they are so many very excellent games come from japan i don't want em ruined
panasonic23  +   1945d ago
What wrong with God of War characters designs none them look they are on roids.
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Blaine  +   1944d ago
I don't entirely disagree with you (I clicked agree, too), but the Santa Monica dev who was responsible for Kratos's character model said, word for word, that Kratos had the build of "a swimmer on steroids"!
ranmafandude  +   1945d ago
i respect the man
but i love Japanese video games. I'm 19 and i grew up with them my whole life. no way in hell am i gonna stop buy and playing them. i love American games too do not get me wrong. i like Japanese game because they have a certain style and personality that other games just cannot have.
Cairnius  +   1945d ago
You all missed the point
Seriously, it's as though no one on N4G actually reads...if the Japanese gaming industry is in trouble, it might be because they're not selling to a world market. You guys loving on Japanese games, that's great...but clearly there aren't enough of you to keep the Japanese games market from shrinking while the American market is growing.

So, if you care about your Japanese games, you'd better hope that the Japanese start selling to the world market and making more money, or you're going to be paying a lot of money for imports someday because the Japanese won't be making games for the American market, because they won't be able to afford to. They'll just become an insular industry and make games for their own market.
tommyth3cat  +   1945d ago
Reading articles?

Man you are asking far too much my friend! Grabbing the fanboy torch is much more satisfying than actually discussing the point the article brings up.
sashimi  +   1944d ago
Japanese games don't sell as much because
1. They are becoming more western i.e. FFXIII
2. Many were time exclusive on Xbox 360 for over a year or more, the shooter console while it'll sell better on the Ps3
3. Some Publishers don't even bother to localize for the Ps3 even though its already on the 360 i.e. Bandai Namco(i'm still waiting for my Tales game)
5. Putting too much focus on trying to capture the fanbase who are only into shooters.
When you don't support the people who actually buy your games and go for a different market that has no interest at all the result is obvious.
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xino  +   1945d ago
anything from Bitmob must not be taken seriously
I can't be bothered to read the article because the title is retarded and the most ridiculous title I've ever heard.

Saying Japanese games needs to be less Japanese is absurd!
Cairnius  +   1945d ago
So you didn't read the article but spout off at the mouth about it? That's what's absurd. Or retarded. Take your pick. :)

You N4G'ers crack me up sometimes...
Baka-akaB  +   1945d ago
it's only as retarded as the way you guys use flamebait articles for hits . Twice more retarded if you contributors aint even part of said blogs or sites' staff , and just doing it for some virtual scores on n4g

Wanna get people to actually read article that could have some valid points ? Then stop acting like twats from tabloids
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jaosobno  +   1945d ago
FFS, no!

We loved japanese games because they were different, not because they were copy/paste of western games!
Zinc  +   1945d ago
I believe there is a place for their particular style and every other style. I enjoy JRPG's. I enjoy RPG's made by western companies. I simply enjoy RPG's.
GigaGaia  +   1945d ago
I'd rather have characters like in jRPGs then characters like Kratos.
SeraphimBlade  +   1945d ago
Kratos (GoW I) > most JRPG characters > Kratos (Gow II & III, when he's just a douche)
playnation  +   1945d ago
no they shouldn´t !!! japanese horror games are for example the greatest and scarier games out there, games like silent hill are **** up when western companies work in them.
xYLeinen  +   1945d ago
So let's just mash up all our games genres as well then and make one genre. This is dumb, the Japanese style is very appreciated on my part. Maybe I don't play them as heavily as western game but I love their style and I hope they don't change because of sales.
Dazel  +   1945d ago
I've never been a fan of JRPG
but i hate to think folk would want jap games to be anything other than Japanese. Ok they have some quirky shit just for them but MGS wouldn't be half of what it is if it started life in the west. While companies like Capcom may have lost their way, becoming more western defo ain't the solution.
4pocalyps3  +   1945d ago
Otherwise they wouldn't be japanese games would they? Jackass ¬_¬
WLPowell  +   1945d ago
Japan gives us everything from the mascot character, to the overly macho character, to the strong female character, to the androgenous male, to masculine females, and everything in between. Eastern devs seem pretty stuck on either macho or "make your own" strategy. with very few examples breaking the trend. What's with making it seem that Final Fantasy defines everything Eastern devs have done. and those changes in Metroid other M were to make the game more western.
Stealth20k  +   1945d ago
lol and inafune wants to quit.......hes basically just shitting on the industry just to shit on it. Doesnt make it true

pokemon white black is on pace to shatter worldwide halo reach sales

So should every game be like pokemon?
Neckbear  +   1945d ago
I like Japanese games...
Mainly because of their quirkiness. Sure, that might turn alot of people off, but still, it's just something unique.

I mean, how many games have you seen that involve you playing the role of a LITTLE GIRL going around CRAFTING STUFF?

It could turn people off, yes, but god fucking dammit if it ain't fun as hell.


It's just ridiculous -but fun- stuff that you don't see anywhere else. That's what I like about Japanese games (Although that is also why they are considered Niche.)

In my opinion- no, I don't care about what the media has to say or anything- I just, as an individual, enjoy these games, and I hope they keep making them despite seeing some bad publicity and barely selling 100k.


Why, yes. I was just saying they're considered Niche here.

And uh, to some extent, they ARE somewhat Niche in Japan, if you compare them to Pokémon or Dragon Quest.
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Stealth20k  +   1945d ago
they arent niche in japan where they sell millions just here
protekjv  +   1945d ago
Bass_fisherman  +   1945d ago
Changing the fact that a game is more japanese oriented or not doesnt change of what that game is going to be good or bad but i welcome more japanese oriented games than westernized ones that are made in japan of course.

Bass Fisherman
clarkdef  +   1945d ago
I hate the way they make there characters look, very girly with no chins.
UP  +   1945d ago
I like my western games with a western feel and my japanese games with a japanese feel. Mixing both is bad.
n to the b  +   1945d ago
"Mixing both is bad."

not necessarily - maybe devs just need more practice. for ex: didn't MGS4 sorta 'westernize' the control scheme, compared to prior MGS entries? and don't we mostly think it's an improvement?
UP  +   1944d ago
Not control wise I mean like character design and things like that we do not want a girly beef monster.
clarkdef  +   1945d ago
Lol how can people disagree with me on the no chins
Roper316  +   1945d ago
no absolutely not but they do need to be less westernized. They keep trying to appease the shooter fanatics but it isn't working and they are losing the faithful fans the did have.
Lucreto  +   1945d ago
I don't like Capcom but they have 2 of my favourite games phoenix wright and Okami. These are the only 2 games I will buy from them.

My only problem with japanese games is the VA, fix that and I'm fine.

Japanese need to watch more western TV. I give the example of Firefly. I like the group mechanic in the show, a rag tag group a smuggler's just trying to make some money. Instead of the bubbley energetic character with the high voice Kaylee would be a good example to use instead.
Adrela  +   1945d ago
Sadly, I'm going to have to agree with this article. It goes into further detail about why I refuse to pick up any game that I feel is somewhat Japanese inspired. I respect the culture, and the style that comes from it, but Japanese games are JUST that. I feel like every game that I've played that is Japanese, they are all the same. Nothing is quite different. I guess the same can be said about Western games on some issues, but it's really bad with Japanese.
I understand if you like playing, "their" games, but in order to be successful, they have to be a lot more creative. Final Fantasy is a series I refuse to touch because of this.
xino  +   1944d ago
exactly my point
The recent Japanese games we see all look the same and that's because Japan do not approve of the term "change".
You look at anime, and the drawings are always the same thing and look the same!

Look at the Tales games...I mean it's like copy and paste with different characters, enemies and places. Everything else is the same.

I just recently finished Metal Gear Solid 4 and I was farking blow away!

This is a game that LOOK so Western type but developed by Japanese developers. It has too much western theme to it that you will mistakenly it as a Western company who developed the game, yet the game does have some Japanese culture and themes to it:
*The way MK 2 acts
*otaku references
*jokes in the game
*some of the fight scenes
SeraphimBlade  +   1945d ago
Very good article, I think they hit the point of it all. Some Japanese games just aren't made with the global market in mind. I absolutely love Persona 3 + 4, but I know some gamers that would hang themselves before they reached the first dungeon and I can understand why.

The games the writer lists are very odd choices though. Dead Rising? I never thought for one second that game wanted me to take it seriously. Same for Vanquish, though I've only played the demo. And why doesn't he bring up Quantum Theory, which was a Japanese game trying to be western and getting everything wrong.
theonlylolking  +   1945d ago
That is like asking should Western games be less Western and more japanese.

I say NO. Sometimes you need to play a japanese game and play a western game like call of duty or something.

I am not saying COD is awesome.
Venox2008  +   1945d ago
japanese games..
must stay japanese.. amen and over.. :)
Tex117  +   1945d ago
Yeah, but when you get a solid mix of East and West (think Demon's Souls...Japanese developer with Japanese stats, ratios, tinkering with stuff, mixed with Western Action, atmosphere, intensity...You get a superb game.
Senden  +   1945d ago
Some Japanese games could use toning down.. especially ones with annoying little children.. sorry but unlike Japan, Western audiences aren't repressed paedos.

However I think a better discussion should be "should western games be less predictably western". This console generation especially.. I find myself feeling a little bored with the usual stuff we get these days.. western developers while making a few new cool additions, lack the imagination to create the masterpieces of previous generations. I don't think I can name a single game this gen that can stand toe to toe with ff7.
kagon01  +   1944d ago
If Japanese games become westernized, I will not longer support gaming. My 99.5% collection of games I have are from Japan and are my favorite type of games...

It's like transforming the Anime of Street Fighter II into the American Cartoon of Street Fighter:
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