Low PS4 Sales in Japan Combined with Success in the West Are Pushing Japanese Devs to Localize Games

With the PS4 generation a lot of Japanese developers and publishers like Koei Tecmo, Bandai Namco or even Sega have started to localize their games for the western market.

One of the reasons behind that, is that the PS4 isn't selling that well in Japan just yet.

Read Full Story >>
The story is too old to be commented.
Yi-Long1166d ago

Good if it means western releases with English subs.

Bad if it means they'll replace the original voices with poor English dubs.

1166d ago
gaffyh1166d ago

Sales are low at the moment in Japan because there isn't much for Japanese gamers available. That will change when FFXV and Street Fighter are available. A Monster Hunter and Dragon Quest would also help.

1166d ago
donthate1165d ago (Edited 1165d ago )


Japanese console gamer market is in a rapid implosion. It has gotten to the point where even the Playstation brand is selling poorly over there.

Even handhelds are starting to get questionable as everybody is moving to mobile gaming on smart phones/tablets.

Japan once the center of gaming is now at best third after UK in the world and rapidly declining. Even most of the games coming from Japan hasn't evolved almost at all.

You see a few devs clawing their way to the west, but the vast majority of devs there are turning insignificant.

It is a sad reality and this news isn't good at all. MS snagged a few japanese devs, but I hope Sony can snag a few too and introduce them to western game development.

+ Show (3) more repliesLast reply 1165d ago
nX1166d ago

Yeah, kinda stupid to not localize at least the big releases like Yakuza. Imagine if Demon's Souls hadn't come west, we probably wouldn't have Bloodborne or Dark Souls 3 today. Japanese (and Korean, Chinese, etc.) devs finally need to realize that the western gaming market holds so much more potential than their home turf.

shadowknight2031166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

Exactly. Niche titles like hyper neptunia are doing well enough to have sequel after sequel ( or prequel). We need variety from the japanese market and they do have variety to give.

miyamoto1166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

It's very good for the west but at the same time it's sad for Japan....but!

This is a job for PS4 to revolutionize console gaming in Japan!
PS4 will get it right.

No more Americanization of Japanese games like last gen when Xbox 360 was in the lead in the USA.

Japanese games must stick to what they really are; to their roots just like in the PSOne and PS2 day that western gamers happily welcomed and accepted.

Japanese games need to be true to their culture that makes them unique and set them apart from western games.

Like I said before the PS4 will usher in the Next Wave of Japanese Games Invasion in the West.

And again.... U R Not E

FinalFantasyFanatic1166d ago

Well this explains some of the unusual localization choices (e.g. Galgun being a recent example), not that I'm complaining about it since it benefits me. But I still question why some of the obvious choices don't get localized, like Type 0 didn't get localized until the HD remake (blame the Vita is dead in the west mentality) and we're still missing out on the recent God Eater titles for some reason. I just think the localization choices are odd, especially for games that would obviously do well compared to games that are obviously more risky.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1166d ago
bf0007779661166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

despite low sales, it still sells 100x better than the competition in Japan

itsmebryan1166d ago

Xbox never came up but, you had to take your jab. Why so defensive ?

wellard1166d ago

That's not really what the article is about. Had you have put in the effort to read the article you would have known this. Marked for trolling.

magiciandude1166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

If it's actually selling 100x better than the competition in Japan, that's definitely not low. Unfortunately, it's not 100x better and you're extremely exaggerating. It's much closer to 10x than 100x.

Localizing Japanese games to the west now seems to be necessary since the PS4 isn't selling as good as it should in Japan. You see, there isn't much on PS4 that screams system seller there, hence the low sales. Notable PS4 games are mostly the likes of Compile Heart games, which are actually for a niche audience in Japan...

shadowknight2031166d ago

Xbox never stood a chance ever. Not in japan. So no it wouldnt be news to report it lol.

Xbonewone320151166d ago

Who cares?

The only markets that actually matter are usa and uk. The rest is fluff.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 1166d ago
Magicite1166d ago

so many amazing japanese games have never been localized, that makes me sad.

deaddragonz1166d ago

*cough* Valkyria Chronicles ...3 right?

iTechHeads1166d ago

Good that games are being localized but not good that sales aren't that good over there. I'm sure it will have no problem being the best-selling console but the home connsole market and even dedicated handheld market has shrunk significantly over the years.

Derekvinyard131166d ago

if There's low ps4 sales in japan then why in the hell does sony release the new 1200 models there first?? doesn't ps4 do better in NA? never understood this.

DragonDDark1166d ago

Lol I just said good because the article wasn't getting lots of attention and i have like 30+ agrees xD

thisismyaccount1166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

Are you kidding me? It sold 1.7mill. in about 14months, without any real japanese-phile title... that bad?


last week
this week

.. low sales. It´s selling more than PS3+XB1+Vita combined every week so far, again with no nippon software.

+ Show (5) more repliesLast reply 1165d ago
pompombrum1166d ago

To be fair though, do the Japanese really have many reasons to buy a PS4? Almost all of the games that really appeal to their audience are still coming out on the PS3 as well as PS4. I imagine things will change next year with FF15.

Eterna1Ice1166d ago

Who knows, they may announce that it is coming to PC at one point.

TheGreatGamer1166d ago

Wouldn't really matter. PC market isn't very big in Japan

Eterna1Ice1166d ago

That's why they're even making the newest Tales game come to PC? XIII trilogy also was ported to Steam in last years.

Magicite1166d ago

I really hope it comes to PC too, but Im sure that PS4 will be main system for it.

TwoForce1166d ago

@TheGreatGamer Dude, what the hell ?

freshslicepizza1166d ago

can someone please explain to me why it appears the west is far more open to japanese games but the japanese culture appears less so to western games?

DarXyde1166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

There are a few reasons for that. People play games for different reasons. Some like the interactive story elements, others are more about strategy and reasoning, etc.

Western developers prioritize certain themes I imagine don't click well with Japanese gamers. I'd say I don't even like that many western games as most of mine are Japanese.

I also believe that FPS games (which are almost exclusively Western ideas) facilitate health issues in the Japanese. I actually can't play those games for long without feeling some kind of sickness either.

But put that aside for a moment and look at the themes found in Japanese media versus western media. That stuff just doesn't interest them. Eastern developers tend to include themes that work for Japanese gamers and western gamers. Western developers don't really reciprocate that. There's also the fact that Japanese people, collectively, are far more traditional.

Maybe it's a matter of stimulating their own economy too. There's no one answer to that, but if I had to guess, I'd summarize it by saying, "Japan gets us, we don't get Japan". Apple does, though.

SilentNegotiator1166d ago

"Japan gets us, we don't get Japan"

You've got that 100% backwards. The homogeneous nation of Japan doesn't get the west and the diverse, open minded west has plenty of people that understand Japan.

DarXyde1166d ago


If that we're the case, we'd all be playing western titles and JRPGs would never be localized or feature western themes. Fact is, we enjoy their culture (cars, food, technology, media) far more than they enjoy western offerings. Literature and cell phones may be the only exception, but I think you misunderstand.

When I say Japan gets us, I mean they give us things we want. When I say we don't get Japan, I mean we don't offer much in the way of what they want.

SilentNegotiator1165d ago

It's because the Japanese are xenophobes that refuse to try other cultures. They don't find things of interest because they don't try, not because we don't have anything to offer.

DarXyde1165d ago

Calling Japan xenophobic, in my opinion, is like calling the southern states of America racist: it's relative to other places, and the places they're compared to just do a better job of hiding it. The West is totally xenophobic, especially with the insane degree of islamophobia. Let's not pretend our house is in order either.

That aside, Japan has greater interest in certain themes. RPGs, portability, kaiju movies, horror films done a certain way, you name it. Apple is the only company that seems to understand, so yes, Apple does well in Japan. I'm sure part of it is stimulating the local economy, but I contend the wedge between east and west is the result of a particular lack of reciprocity. Japan brought us a lot of our favorite things. PlayStation, Nintendo, JRPGs, Toyotas and Hondas, the Walkman, and heck, look at how anime characters are designed: large eyes, various hair colors, strong character builds...all very common in the west. It's obvious they make these things with us in mind. We don't do that.

I feel particularly strongly about writing them off as xenophobic because I've visited Okinawa, Tokyo, and Nagasaki twice in the past 6 years as an obvious foreigner and I certainly didn't feel unwanted or fear from others. It was delightfully inviting.

+ Show (2) more repliesLast reply 1165d ago
iTechHeads1166d ago

It shouldn't matter though. Japanese gamers are usually quick to jump to next gen. this gen has been a big different due to the mobile gaming which is clearly the future of the Japanese gaming scene.

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1165d ago
joab7771166d ago

It will change, but they need some games. Persona 5 will be huge, but would have been a huge system seller had they made it for PS4 only. FF15 will help. But, they need a big exclusive for PS4.

_-EDMIX-_1166d ago

" But, they need a big exclusive for PS4." They sorta just need any games at this point, they will be ok.

PS is the preferred system in Japan in terms of current gen consoles, games like FFXV likely won't even get XONE releases same with KH III so they might as well be exclusive in that region.

Made only for PS4 in Japan means almost nothing if you factor just how low XONE's sales are, consider if its FF, KH, DQ, MGSV etc, they again might as well be exclusive as those will keep pushing PS4 sales, not XONE sales.

They will be fine in Japan, MS not doing well there again is a huge benefit to them. The low sales of consoles when you really look at it i Japan is due to low release of IPs Japan wants, ie FF, KH, DQ, MGS etc (don't know about MGS doe lol)

So they are just waiting for traditional Japanese content really from both consoles at this point, but mainly from PS4 which will get them likely exclusively, I Don't see Square and many publisher making Japanese versions of many, many titles for XONE like they did with 360 last gen.

TheGamez1001166d ago

We still need god eater rez and 2 over here

The_Truth_24_71166d ago (Edited 1166d ago )

What Square Enix needs to do is a Final Fantasy 7 remake. That will get Japanese gamers to buy a PS4. It was such a huge hit when it hit the PS1 came out. It practically got people to buy a PS1.
Also, Shenmue 3 needs to be made. There are so many fans that need closure to such an innovative series. Shenmue was a very "Japanese" game so the Japanese should love that.
Bring it to the PS4.

Aenea1166d ago

What the ...?

Did you miss Sony's E3 press conference?

ShaunCameron1166d ago

One problem, though. That was 1997. This is 2015. The average Japanese gamer no longer cares about the home console like that. It's all about the mobile phone and to a lesser extent, the handheld.

Spotie1166d ago

The average Japanese gamer might care if games like those are on home consoles, though. And that's kinda the point here.

Ch1d0r11166d ago

Great idea! You should work for SONY. I hope they announce this next year at E3 2016 ;)

+ Show (1) more replyLast reply 1166d ago
Show all comments (72)
The story is too old to be commented.