Microsoft's next generation in Japan

It was reported that the orignial Xbox had sold 2 million units in Japan as of May 2006. The 360's hardware sales in Japan were close to 500k at the end of 2007.
t Microsoft's Xbox 360 has finally surpassed that of the original Xbox – within two years to boot. Through October 28 in Japan, the Xbox 360 has sold 474,000 units, exceeding the original Xbox total of 473,000 units. Famitsu said this was fueled partially by the arrival of the Xbox 360 Elite model (120GB, HDMI-enabled) on October 11. That said, Xbox 360 sold just 18,717 during October.
http://www.ditii.com/2007/11/16/xbox-360-surpasses-total-xbox-sales-in-japan/
 
My mistake. I was reading a Wiki article that had listed it at 2 million sold.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xbox#Sales

"The Xbox has sold 24 million units worldwide as of May 10, 2006, according to Microsoft.[1] This is divided out to 16 million units sold in North America, six million units in Europe, and two million units sold in Japan.Overall, the Xbox was a success especially in North America. Sales were also positive in Europe, but Japan saw poor sales, with only 2 million units sold there."
 
MS should focus the BRIC now. That's where the money is and will be for the foreseeable future.
This is an odd view to take and has been mentioned several times now.

China = no. Games consoles are banned.
Russia/India/Brazil = Maybe, but considering the massive income inequality it's not a viable target yet. They may be developing countries and are earning riches, but the affluent consumers are a small market. Add that to the fact that these countries have been brought up on piracy, there really isn't that much money to be made outside of central urban hubs.

If you are going to target developing nations, then MS should follow Sony's lead and push the previous gen console e.g. the 360 upon the release of Loop.
 

djtiesto

is beloved, despite what anyone might say
MS should focus the BRIC now. That's where the money is and will be for the foreseeable future.
Good luck beating the Master System in Brazil though!
I'd rather play Phantasy Star 1 or Wonder Boy III than the next Halo or Fable game myself :p
 
None of the consoles beat the ps2 this gen.
No, I didn't mean lifetime sales.

I meant, did the xbox360 beat the Ps2 in Japan during this generation of consoles. Did they sell more 360s than PS2s this gen? Everytime I looked at the japanese sales data, the PS2 gave the 360 a hard time... which was a pretty sad/or awesome (?) sight.
 
LOL! Wow! This thread has really showed me how long I've been into gaming. Listen up younglings. The longer you are alive the more cycles you notice. It may amaze you guys but there was a time were the Japanese was not really relevant in gaming and the West dominated. Back in the Atari era the west was King in the console market. The pendulum is merely swing back to were it came from. Perhaps in future the East will rise again when your children become older. It's cute when I see gamers who think the console era dawned with the NES. The East is in decline but more than likely they will rise again. Just like the West did.

I think M$ should keep a token presence in Japan. Don't waste money hats over there though unless it will directly benefit NA and EU markets.
 
Microsoft to me seems like a joke in Japan. I don't feel as if they focus as much on Japan as they do the American market. Sony and Nintendo can at least capture a western audience.
 
I think Microsoft bailing out would be very short sighted of them. While it true that right now Western gamers don't care as much for non-Nintendo Japanese games, there's no reason to believe that is a permanent situation. There could very well come a time again when Japanese games are what drive console sales. In that case, it's in Microsoft interest to have a continued presence in Japan, so at the very least they can get multi-platform releases.

Microsoft's nightmare situation is next gen they abandon Japan, don't get FF XX, and watch that game become the most popular game of the generation, not available on their system.

And of course Microsoft's actual goal is to dominate the living room - a Japanese living room is worth as much an American or French living room. There's no way they'd just abandon a country with the population and wealth of Japan.
 

Combichristoffersen

Combovers don't work when there is no hair
Microsoft's nightmare situation is next gen they abandon Japan, don't get FF XX, and watch that game become the most popular game of the generation, not available on their system.
Microsoft can afford to ignore the Japanese market, but Japanese developers can't afford to ignore the Western market. Microsoft would get FF XX anyway, provided the 720 doesn't completely bomb.
 
I find this so offensive, and such an American thing to say.
Its like saying that Hollywood has such a particular output that every other studio and non-american creative outside it should just give up immediately.
Not really, your analogy is off. It's only earmarking Japan, not "every other gaming culture". I partially agree although Japanese studios still put out some games I enjoy but over the last 5 years it has dropped significantly compared to what I enjoyed the previous 5-10.
 
The big "problem" with many companies in Japan is that during the PS1 and PS2 era they concentrated uniquely on those platforms (and N64, GC, etc..) and they were doing great. However many western companies weren't and a lot of them shifted to PC development, or were making games for both consoles and PC.
What that means is that during the beginning of this generation a lot of Western companies had a lot of experience with higher resolution asset creation, working with higher specs, etc.. whereas many Japanese companies had to fight against the clock to either..

1) Create a whole new engine while learning a lot of the new stuff while many Western companies already had some of it done.
2) License middleware and even whole engines (usually stuff like Unreal Engine) which would mean waiting to get a lot of the information translated to Japanese, being able to actually get the Licenses themselves in Japan, etc..

Now I'd say a bunch of companies are catching up with the technologies, so hopefully we start to see more and more good Japanese titles out there. For anyone not caring about them, you'd be limiting yourself to a certain style of games only. I personally don't understand how people can go and say 'I don't care about Japanese games anymore', like Japanese games are all the same. Same goes for those that say they don't care about Western games because they all have dudebros in them.

I personally hope we can get a nice mix of both western and eastern (good) designs. Limiting yourself to one only would be pretty lame.




As for the OT itself.. Microsoft will have it hard here, but with the correct timing it could go somewhat nicely. I don't know how the Vita is going to do in the next year or so, and the 3DS will do fine (or quite well depending on what they release), but the PS4 is probably going to release after the next Xbox, and I'm not really all that sure about WiiU right now. So yeah...
 
Microsoft can afford to ignore the Japanese market, but Japanese developers can't afford to ignore the Western market. Microsoft would get FF XX anyway, provided the 720 doesn't completely bomb.
Japanese games often bomb in the west on 360 as is. If Nintendo and PlayStation are both offering competitive systems, then Japanese developers certainly will be inclined to dump Xbox.

Japan is still an important market strategically. Microsoft needs to not only maintain their presence there but they need to improve upon it.
 
Maybe should just go digital only in Japan and just offer the games cheaper.
Atleast a chance of breaking even without ultra budget games.
Right. And what retailer is going to carry a digital only system? :p

Microsoft really has to go after Japan. It shouldn't be their focus, but they have to get their presence in Japan to a certain degree.

There's a lot of core japanese-centric gamers outside of Japan which their system has to cater to, and I think if they want to make a dent in the Asian market they have to have japanese games in their systems, since japan works as a "central hub" for gaming in the eastern hemisphere.

Who knows though.

If China ever opens up to consoles, then I think it'd be very interesting for the big 3 to have a good presence in the game industry in Japan.
 
Japanese games often bomb in the west on 360 as is. If Nintendo and PlayStation are both offering competitive systems, then Japanese developers certainly will be inclined to dump Xbox.
Japanese games that bomb on Xbox 360 also bomb on PS3 in the west. For bigger releases Japanese developers can't afford ignoring Microsoft, but relatively niche games are another matter entirely.
 

Combichristoffersen

Combovers don't work when there is no hair
Japanese games that bomb on Xbox 360 also bomb on PS3 in the west. For bigger releases Japanese developers can't afford ignoring Microsoft, but relatively niche games are another matter entirely.
Exactly. And unless the next Xbox completely bombs and we get an extremely dominant console like we had with the PS1 and PS2, Japanese developers can't afford to ignore the Xbox in the West. Domestically the Xbox brand is as good as completely irrelevant anyway, so it would be pointless for Microsoft to waste money on Japanese marketing or moneyhatting exclusives to appeal to an audience that doesn't want their product. Put a few 720s in stores without much fanfare, as those who are interested will be aware of its release anyway, and spend the money in areas where they actually have a chance of succeeding.
 
MS's strategy is well beyond gaming consoles...They have been laying the groundwork as a set-top box and it is indeed a worldwide strategy. They've setup offices, translation teams, software partners...they aren't going anywhere.

Back in the day, I postulated the idea that they'd get farther in that market if they (as an example) partnered with SEGA and release in Japan with that branding. That might still be the case but I guess they figured it'd be best to go it themselves and lay the groundwork to acceptance...
 
Assuming Microsoft wants to have a presence in Japan with the next console who's to say that the Japanese retailers will even let them? Why would they buy stock of a product that hasn't sold during it's first two iterations?
 
Japanese games that bomb on Xbox 360 also bomb on PS3 in the west. For bigger releases Japanese developers can't afford ignoring Microsoft, but relatively niche games are another matter entirely.
And next gen things might turn out differently if you have 3 consoles capable of running the same engines, with a 3 way split in the west similar to this gen but only two of them being viable in Japanese publishers' home market.

Microsoft can't simply ignore Japan as they have been since 2008, they'll need to reinvest next gen and actively court support if they want to keep developers on board.
 
i see home consoles struggling in japan next generation, WiiU next xbox and playstation better be careful there. PS3 is doing okay being generous, wii is almost dead.
I think home consoles should be released there, but just because they need to be , not trying to push them really hard.
 
"I like it but they don't, it must be xenophobia/racism" is lazy defeatism, IMO.
My .02 based on what I have seen over the years.

I would have agreed with you until I heard that Japanese gamers used the "yo-ge kuso-ge" moniker bullshit. Add that to the fact that western games do not sell in Japan no matter how good they are (COD and GTA top out at ~400K, which is a very small number, all things considered) and I have to say there's a feeling of "protectionism" in Japan.

Of course there are exceptions, Mickey D's, iphone, google, and microsoft windows are popular there AFAIK. However, I think that sometimes they will ignore western products in favor of Japanese products, even if their products are clearly inferior. They definitely ignored the 360 when it was getting the bulk of the RPGs and had most of the games that are catered to the Japanese audience (SO4, Blue Dragoon, LO, ToV all come to mind).


The big "problem" with many companies in Japan is that during the PS1 and PS2 era they concentrated uniquely on those platforms (and N64, GC, etc..) and they were doing great. However many western companies weren't and a lot of them shifted to PC development, or were making games for both consoles and PC.
What that means is that during the beginning of this generation a lot of Western companies had a lot of experience with higher resolution asset creation, working with higher specs, etc.. whereas many Japanese companies had to fight against the clock to either..
I think that's a poor excuse. That also happened to western game companies, such as with Sony's first party studios. They didn't struggle nearly as much as Japanese companies this generation.
 

Combichristoffersen

Combovers don't work when there is no hair
I would have agreed with you until I heard that Japanese gamers used the "yo-ge kuso-ge" moniker bullshit. Add that to the fact that western games do not sell in Japan no matter how good they are (COD and GTA top out at ~400K, which is a very small number, all things considered) and I have to say there's a feeling of "protectionism" in Japan.
The Crash Bandicoot games actually sold very well in Japan back in the day. As for CoD not selling, that's more due to FPS games in general not being popular there, since it was originally a PC-centric genre, and PC gaming has never been huge in Japan. I think a lot of Japanese gamers also get sick or queasy due to the first-person view or something like that.
 

djtiesto

is beloved, despite what anyone might say
Japanese games that bomb on Xbox 360 also bomb on PS3 in the west. For bigger releases Japanese developers can't afford ignoring Microsoft, but relatively niche games are another matter entirely.
I think I remember hearing that multiplat-wise, Japanese games tend to do better on PS3 than 360.
 
My .02 based on what I have seen over the years.

I would have agreed with you until I heard that Japanese gamers used the "yo-ge kuso-ge" moniker bullshit. Add that to the fact that western games do not sell in Japan no matter how good they are (COD and GTA top out at ~400K, which is a very small number, all things considered) and I have to say there's a feeling of "protectionism" in Japan.

Of course there are exceptions, Mickey D's, iphone, google, and microsoft windows are popular there AFAIK. However, I think that sometimes they will ignore western products in favor of Japanese products, even if their products are clearly inferior. They definitely ignored the 360 when it was getting the bulk of the RPGs and had most of the games that are catered to the Japanese audience (SO4, Blue Dragoon, LO, ToV all come to mind).
When someone suggests that xenophobia/racism doesn't play a large role in Japan, not just in gaming, I feel very confident that they've never been been to, know non-Japanese people who live there, or are not non-full blooded Japanese themselves.
 
I think I remember hearing that multiplat-wise, Japanese games tend to do better on PS3 than 360.
Overall that's undoubtedly true for most games, since they also sell in Japan where Xbox 360 is almost a non-factor. In western markets it varies from game to game. Regardless of which version does better, dropping either platform would mean leaving a lot of money on the table.
 
I think that's a poor excuse. That also happened to western game companies, such as with Sony's first party studios. They didn't struggle nearly as much as Japanese companies this generation.
Sony's first party studios had HUGE budgets that would let them spend more man hours on an engine while still having people doing assets, game design, etc...