Microsoft “Preparing a Strategy to Change the Image of Xbox” in Japan

The Xbox One still doesn’t have a release date in Japan, but why? Apparently Microsoft is busy plotting its return to the local spotlight after two generations of unsuccessful attempts with the Xbox and the Xbox 360.

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Gozer2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

As long as Japanese vendors label platforms made outside of japan as "foreign", no non-Japanese platform maker is going to do well in japan. I haven't heard of any other country segregating their games this way.

If I were MS I would use those resources elsewhere. Japan is a lost cause as long as they show prejudice to non-Japanese made platforms.

TomShoe2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

Xbox isn't going to gain much of a foothold in Japan. This isn't a slight against the JP Xbox team, but that's just the way things are.

They'd be better off focusing on their main Europe/NA territories.

ZodTheRipper2182d ago

They lost lots of market share in their home terrains (US & UK) already, Japan or Asia for that matter should be their least concern right now.

Mikelarry2182d ago

MS please stop ...... just stop. who bright idea was we are losing serious ground in NA and EU so we put all that unnecessary workforce in a region that has never cared for our product.

abzdine2182d ago

WHAT? are they still in planning and preparing phase??? game over and humiliating defeat for them if it is!

ABizzel12182d ago

Send 100,000 console to JP during launch for the first month, and send 10,000 consoles per month afterwards, 50,000 for each big Japanese release and call it a generation for Japan.

The best selling week for the 360 was launch with just under 55,000 units sold. The best selling years were 2008 and 2009 with both years coming up just under 350k units each with Japanese centric games like Star Ocean, Resident Evil 5, Tales of Vesperia, The Last Remnant, Beautiful Katamari and more releasing those years. And the introduction of the $199 Arcade, $299 60GB, and $399 120GB Elite in 2008.

With a $500 price tag the XBO isn't going to do anything in Japan, worse of all Japanese support seems to be heavily focusing on PS4. Send 2 million consoles over the entire generation to Japan and focus on NA / EU.

kickerz2182d ago

They might need Stephen Hawkings working on that strategy cause dam, it's going to be tuff.

Akuma072182d ago


Best selling week for 360 was 55,000? That is better than the current week on week international sales of the XBox One.

DragonKnight2182d ago

Japanese gamers are frickin' smart to steer away from shooters. Over here in the West the market is saturated with them to the point it's disgusting.

Microsoft has been trying to change the image of Xbox in Japan since the original Xbox. They have never been able to so I doubt they'll succeed now.

WonderboyIII2182d ago

An exclusive AAA MMOJRPG might be their only hope.

Gamer19822182d ago

There throwing a bunch of money at Japan that could be spent instead on great gaming studios in countries that give a damn. Stick to your strong points.. They did that with 360 after failure in Japan and it got them a massive check in the keeping up with Sony column.. If they stand any chance against the juggernaut that is currently the PS4 they need to focus on what they do best in the countries they do it best in..

redwin2181d ago

I agree with gozer and disagree with Tomshoe, but I also agree that MS needs "role play", "role play", "role play" and platform games in JP

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Abriael2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

It's the same for the iphone, and it does great in Japan. It's mostly a matter of marketing, and having real content/features that appeases the Japanese.

Not sure Microsoft will manage (probably not), but the "oh my god, they hate foreign stuff" one is an excuse.

Edit: disagree as much as you want, but it's a 100% proven fact that there are ton of extremely successful "foreign" products in Japan. A stroll around Tokyo is enough to show that.

ZodTheRipper2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

I disagreed because I think that even great marketing won't make the Xbone successful in Japan ...PS4 and common sense will make this impossible.

You are of course right that it's not about "home" and "foreign" products, the same holds true for Americans and Microsoft as can be seen with the PS4.

darthv722182d ago

Successful 'foreign' products in the form of McDonalds, coke, Pepsi, Iphone are not anywhere in the same sense as a gaming console. those products succeed because they arent infringing on anything remotely close to what is offered directly within that culture.

The original xbox did okay its first time out. The 360 paled in comparison because the JP market didnt take too kindly to MS dropping support almost immediately when the 360 was announced. 3rd time will not be the charm no matter how quirky they try and develop jp specific titles for it.

Abriael2182d ago

@darthv72: you mean Japan doesn't make cellphones? Didn't have fast food before McDonalds? Its own soft drinks?

Please think again.

Baka-akaB2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

Lol all of those successful foreign product smade forrays in areas that were already a big competitive market in japan . That line of thought makes no sense .

Ok there is skepticism , protectionism , xenophobia even pver there . But people constantly act as if Microsoft efforts wrre any good to begin with , just because they brought a few exclusives jrpgs , way ahaead of the ps3 even .

But they keep forgetting how a non household name first released with close to no games marketed toward japan . Nintendo and SOny can do that , because they do have foothold and people know wich franchises and allegiance to usually expect in Japan , but microsoft ?

People forget the console launched mostly with Kameo , Perfect Dark , and a bunch of western games . The only big japanese game title at release was Dead or Alive 4 , the least popular entry in the franchise's history .

Soon enough some will argue , that the japanese public should open up (wich they slowly actually do) , as if the western word would even accept a console launching with pachinko games , Nobunaga's ambition and other 100% Japanese centric titles . Hell they dont even have too , when needed those consoles launched month to a year later with more suited titles , even with the abysmal ps2 launch .

The 360 japanese jrpgs gems took a fairly decent time actually to come , but at least one of them should have been ready for release

iceman062182d ago

@Darth...Abriael is correct. Western products sell quite well in Japan, in part, simply because they are Western. The younger generation have lapped up everything Western for decades. Music, movies, TV, food, clothing, etc. MS just hasn't produced a console with the gaming options that cater to Japanese gamers. Instead, they marketed their idea of gaming to the Japanese. The original Xbox was probably the closest that they ever got to "traditional" gaming in Japan.

sinspirit2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )


It didn't have fast food places, touch screen smart phones, or soft drinks anything like what we had at the time those came out in Japan.

When it comes to game consoles they already have two giants in the industry and don't care for the generic competitive shooter genre that made XBox popular. They are out of touch with their main countries as it is. I doubt they know what Japan wants.

gigoran2182d ago

Abriael is right and those disagreeing are 100% wrong. How do I know? Lived in Tokyo for 12 years. It has nothing to do with a product being foreign. The problem is with Microsoft itself. Basically, they burned themselves twice, and people don't forget easily. First impressions matter.

iceman062182d ago

@Sinspirit...I lived in Japan from 1984-88. I can attest to the fact that the DID have their own soft drinks. They DID have fast food restaurants, styled after those in the west. That was over 30 years ago!
I don't know if MS is "out of touch" with Japan or if it just really wants to impose it's idea of what gaming is...much like it has done in the US (for better and for worse).

sinspirit2181d ago


They were supposed to be like them. But they weren't.

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GribbleGrunger2182d ago

@Gozer: You seem keen on pushing the 'jingoism' angle. Have you by chance inadvertently represented yourself as the very thing you are railing against?

MasterCornholio2182d ago

Hes just racist towards the Japanese because they never accepted the Xbox brand.


andrewsqual2182d ago

They need to swallow their huge pride and DROP the name. Xbox translates to Failbox, Exitbox, CancelBox in Japan. That has always been their problem.

DeadMansHand2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

That reminds me of when Chevy was selling the Nova or something in Mexico and sales were abysmal. They then learned Nova literally meant No Go in Spanish. Lol

OrangePowerz2182d ago


Or the Pajero in Spain because in spanish it means wanking :D

TheObserver2182d ago

The new Xbox One or commonly shortened to X1 doesn't help them either. In Japanese it is translated to Batsu Ichi, or Wrong One. Or refers to someone who already divorced once. Not a positive thing.

OrangePowerz2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

Plenty of "foreign" products do great in Japan including iPhone and even McDonalds is hugely popular despite how non Japanese most of their food is.

The original Xbox was so far away from what the Japanese people wanted. It was huge, bulky and mainly western games. The 360 improved on games, they got Blue Dragon, Lost Odyssey, [email protected], Star Ocean and a few others, but the damages was already done with the first console. FF13 didn't even release in Japan for the 360 and Sakaguchi switched to doing his third game for the Wii.

Also as Andrew mentiones above the name is bad. X isn't a good thing in Japanese culture, that's why in Japan on the PS X is to cancel and circle to confirm.

It is clear while the Xbox isn't doing great in Japan, all of their consoles are greatly geared towards the western market and the X1 is even more US centric so it has even less appeal in non US countries. Add to that their attitude, being arrogant didn't help Sony and it won't help MS. Arrogance in public is found upon in Japan even more then in the west.

colonel1792182d ago

I think they want to be in Japan even if they sell 1000 consoles a month, because otherwise developers won't want to release their games on Xbox One, and probably would not want to make them only for America and Europe. Also, as usual, Microsoft will NOT allow to have those games exclusive to Sony in Japan. Even if they sell 1 copy of a game there, that's one sale less for PS4.

AceBlazer132182d ago

Doesn't Japan like love Apple or something? Anyway Microsoft's failure in Japan is a given. People fail to realize Xbox has a small presence globally . The 360's popularity was a fluke.

Mr Pumblechook2182d ago

I read last week that the Wii U has outsold lifetime sales of the 360, a console that has been on sale for about EIGHT years. This means the Xbox brand is not gelling with consumers in Japan. Remember last gen the 360 launched before the PS3 which gave it some advantages, this time the PS4 has launched first. Also the Xbone is a big console and the new Kinect is a big camera and the Japanese prefer them small. I suspect the Xbone in Japan will remain a niche machine.

Blachek2182d ago

Easy, change the name to...


^Kamikaze Box, more Japanese than that Sony trash.

Blachek2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

Should work great so long as they are as gullible and as thoughtless as us Americans.

SilentNegotiator2181d ago

There are plenty of products from the West that do well in Japan. You can't blame prejudice for them not having a taste for Western games.

Joey_Leone2181d ago Show
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NatureOfLogic2182d ago (Edited 2182d ago )

Losing weekly at home is where their focus should be. Japan is not interested in Xbox.

MightyNoX2182d ago

This ought to be a lark to watch unfold.

2182d ago