With the recent Japanese game resurgence, should western developers be wary?

I just looked​ up:

http://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/ea/financials?query=income-statement
http://www.nasdaq.com/symbol/ttwo/financials?query=income-statement
http://quotes.wsj.com/UBSFF/financials/annual/income-statement

EA and Ubisoft saw a decline in revenue compared to last year. And look like Take Two posted a loss.

Activision doing great lately yes but looks like that on back of Blizzard/mobile mainly.
Look at their stock price which is the real telling example. 2K only posted a loss due to the way they report earnings look at the actual stock climb

EA, Activision, Ubisoft, and 2K are all massively up over the last year.

Activision stock up from 32.41 to 49.20
EA stock up from 64.79 to 89.81
Ubisoft up from 26.85 to 36.89
2K up from 39.60 to 59.00

Literally every one of the "Big 4" Western publishers are hugely up from even 12 months ago
 
I mean, what Japanese title are you expecting to outsell the big Western games this year? (COD, Battlefront, Destiny 2, Red Dead 2, etc)

Horizon, a new IP totally crushed the entire "Japanese Revitalization" this year outside of Zelda

Horizon will likely outsell every Q1 Japanese title combined minus Zelda
 
What resurgence? Western games haven't lost much market share so I don't see this supposed resurgence. Not in the PC or home console markets anyway.
 
What resurgence? Western games haven't lost much market share so I don't see this supposed resurgence. Not in the PC or home console markets anyway.
It isn't a situation where something having a resurgence requires that something else go into decline. It isn't hard to see what the TC is talking about, there is a large quantity of excellent Japanese games that released in very quick succession in the last couple of months. That definitely constitutes a resurgence.

This isn't a zero sum game, man.
 
I mean, what Japanese title are you expecting to outsell the big Western games this year? (COD, Battlefront, Destiny 2, Red Dead 2, etc)

Horizon, a new IP totally crushed the entire "Japanese Revitalization" this year outside of Zelda

Horizon will likely outsell every Q1 Japanese title combined minus Zelda
Mario Kart Deluxe and Mario Odyssey lol.

Also if the Pokemon rumor is true.
 
Japanese games as a whole still suffer from that unique Japanese Jank that makes them harder to play than Western games.
that jank is what sets them apart tho...many design choices that could be questioned with "why would you do that?" are often the exact reason why I love some of those games.
 
Should Western Developers be wary? Are you for real?

Horizon, Mass Effect, Call of Duty, Read Dead Redemption 2, Destiny 2, Battlefront 2, God of War, etc. will each destroy 90% of the Japanese games being released in sales. Any one of those will probably beat combined sales of Nier, Nioh, Yakuza, etc.
 
Nope. I think Japan has had a stronger output recently critically, but commercially, most of the top rated games of the past few months that have come out of Japan will struggle to crack 1-2m units, save for Zelda.

Games from the top western publishers are becoming stale af, but they have enough pull that at least for now, they don't need to worry about sales.
 
The Japanese are still way behind Western corps for tech and games. Capcom and Fromsoftware seems to be the only one's who can keep up, most of the time.
I mean Nintendo just outshined most if not all western open world games with Zelda without being a technical marvel.

In fact I would say most Western games are in some ways behind Japanese games in terms of gameplay.
 
I mean Nintendo just outshined most if not all western open world games with Zelda without being a technical marvel.
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It's more like NCL have just caught up with all the rest. Having a true open world console game is nothing new at all. I was happily playing The Elder Scrolls III on my XBox way back in 2002, not that I'm a huge fan of the drive to open world games for any type of game genre .To me the likes of NCL are to blame for the demise of the Japanese industry, with its focus on handhelds and outdated tech has meant so many Japanese studio pipelines aren't up to Western standards and they really don't have to be,to sell and do well in Japan and its focus on mobile and handhelds.

Fairplay to FromSoftware and Capcom though and I must say RE 7 is one of the best games ever made and it's a stunning return to form.
 
Look at their stock price which is the real telling example. 2K only posted a loss due to the way they report earnings look at the actual stock climb

EA, Activision, Ubisoft, and 2K are all massively up over the last year.

Activision stock up from 32.41 to 49.20
EA stock up from 64.79 to 89.81
Ubisoft up from 26.85 to 36.89
2K up from 39.60 to 59.00

Literally every one of the "Big 4" Western publishers are hugely up from even 12 months ago
Isn't this more because the stock market is up in general?

I mean I can see your point (and it's a very valid point) but fact is that sales for lots of AAA games are down compared to previous installments.

See

http://www.stevivor.com/features/opinion/aaa-sales-2016-many-explanations-simple/amp/

http://www.forbes.com/sites/insertc...ales-are-down-nearly-50-from-black-ops-3/amp/

http://www.eurogamer.net/amp/2016-11-21-watch-dogs-2-launch-sales-nowhere-near-watch-dogs-1
 
Kind of surprised so much of this thread has ended up about sales and now stocks? I kind of interpreted and responded as such, as should Western developers be wary of becoming creatively stagnant in the face of the success of recent Japanese games in their reception. Did OP ever follow up clarifying he did actually mean he thinks JP games will outsell western games this year? Feels like what a lot of the responses are geared towards.

Obviously there's a healthy debate there to be had whether or not as a creative you should ever be wary in the face of creativity and if in fact devs in the west are in a rut at all. Saleswise seems so obvious it can't have been the point though, right?
 

HK-47

Oh, bitch bitch bitch.
Kind of surprised so much of this thread has ended up about sales and now stocks? I kind of interpreted and responded as such, as should Western developers be wary of becoming creatively stagnant in the face of the success of recent Japanese games in their reception. Did OP ever follow up clarifying he did actually mean he thinks JP games will outsell western games this year? Feels like what a lot of the responses are geared towards.

Obviously there's a healthy debate there to be had whether or not as a creative you should ever be wary in the face of creativity and if in fact devs in the west are in a rut at all. Saleswise seems so obvious it can't have been the point though, right?
Except that still doesnt work since plenty of those western games do well critically and many people love them. Which the sales back up. So its just bullshit all around.

More like some people have a hard time dealing with the fact that the market doesnt care about the games they love as much as they do. Not even the Japanese market does, if the shrinking console and handheld markets are anything to go by.
 
Except that still doesnt work since plenty of those western games do well critically and many people love them. Which the sales back up. So its just bullshit all around.
Well that's why I said that's definitely a debate to be had there. In my mind there's been a really healthy mix lately. Playing Horizon at the moment and it's just as exciting as some of the fantastic stuff that's came out of Japan lately (I guess I should caveat that with "on ps4"; Imo there has been great stuff coming out from Japan consistently, but more often on 3ds etc. The crux of the OP would be my assumption that now it's happening on Ps4, it's more relevant to potential impact on industry trends etc)
 
Except that still doesnt work since plenty of those western games do well critically and many people love them. Which the sales back up. So its just bullshit all around.

More like some people have a hard time dealing with the fact that the market doesnt care about the games they love as much as they do. Not even the Japanese market does, if the shrinking console and handheld markets are anything to go by.
This is it in a nutshell.

And no, literally no western devs have anything to worry about. A modern open world game and Outlast:RE edition aren't changing the world.
 
Japanese games as a whole still suffer from that unique Japanese Jank that makes them harder to play than Western games.
Is it like, the part where they try to be unique at all or the lack of grizzled white dudes? Because.. just counting recentish releases, do you think FFXV, GR2, Nier, Persona 5, Zelda, Nioh, RE7 and..Dark Souls 3 all suffer from the exact same unidentifiable "jank"

But anyway, competition is good, and Japanese devs tend to be more willing to stick their necks out on a weird idea, which makes things more interesting
 

BocoDragon

or, How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Realize This Assgrab is Delicious
The idea of it shaking Western game development is laughable. This is clearly the wishful thinking of an old timer who remembers the atypical era of Japanese game dominance and thinks "it's only a matter of time before things go back to normal!"

But I think the era of the Phil Fish quote "Japanese games just suck" has been successfully buried. It does feel like Japanese gaming has ascended to be a strong pillar of game development again. It won't "beat" western game development, but Japanese development is a major player again. I couldn't be happier.
 
If there is one area I hope (major) western-developed games learn from Japan through this amazing string of Japanese releases over the last couple months, it's personality.

Yakuza 0, NieR: Automata, Gravity Rush 2, Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Persona 5. All in like 2 months.

Compare any of that shit to the fucking sorry excuse of a personality in Ghost Recon: Wildlands... it's not a favorable comparison.

Hell, off the top of my head, the only major western games last year that had a real defining voice to them was Uncharted 4, Mafia 3, Doom, and weirdly enough, Watch Dogs 2. Overwatch and Hitman as well.
 
It's nice that Japan made some awesome games lately, but it's not even close to the steady output of quality games by western devs over the last years.
 
If there is one area I hope (major) western-developed games learn from Japan through this amazing string of Japanese releases over the last couple months, it's personality.

Yakuza 0, NieR: Automata, Gravity Rush 2, Zelda: Breath of the Wild, Persona 5. All in like 2 months.

Compare any of that shit to the fucking sorry excuse of a personality in Ghost Recon: Wildlands... it's not a favorable comparison.
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I think you're being rather harsh and a little bit unfair myself. Yakuza 0 isn't a new game per say and it's hardly doing anything new or that the other Yakuza games haven't' done a million times before, the Yakuza series much like Assains Creed series needs a break and brand new tech; In Japan very much like with COD or AC (in the West) there's a new Yakuza game each year, it's only because the release of the games over here are staggered or don't come out at all (like with Kezan, Ishin) that it doesn't suffer the same issues of the just more of the same yet again . Yakuza is a series that is in decline and selling nothing like the numbers it one did on the PS2

To me Ghost Recon comes alive in online co-op and that's an area Japan is way behind the west when it comes to Online gameplay. It's a great list you've listed but overlooking you've left out RE 7. There;s been some great Western developed games the last few months with the likes of Forza Horizon 3, Doom 4, Dishonored 2, Battlefield 1, Titanfall 2, Inside Ect...

Both the West and Japan have been making great games of late imo
 
Nope. I think Japan has had a stronger output recently critically, but commercially, most of the top rated games of the past few months that have come out of Japan will struggle to crack 1-2m units, save for Zelda.

Games from the top western publishers are becoming stale af, but they have enough pull that at least for now, they don't need to worry about sales.
Just because critics love Japanese games and maybe does seem to lean to helping them with kinder critique does not mean the main western audience gives too hoots..

Whats big, outside horizon recently, in the west will be large online type games like COD / BF / Destiny and even ME andromeda with its coop. Would not be surprised in RDR2 is online like GTA 5.

Most japanese games recently seem to be single player focus, and so everyone can co-exist and there is little cross over IMO.
 
I'd love it if we could stop dividing games up into 'japan' and 'not japan'. It made sense when the Japanese industry was greater than everything else on consoles combined but these days it's basically comparing the output of one country to the combined output of the dozens of countrys that make up 'the west' when their games industries are pretty sizeable. It just seems ridiculous to me to badge the entire games industries of pretty much every nation west of Russia under one banner and then suggest that one country has to compete with that combined output all at once. It's not as if all the cash ends up in one pot called 'western development', the main competitor of most western studios is other western studios, and smaller western devs have been just as likely as Japanese ones to collapse under the pressures of industry changes brought on by the AAA industry raising the bar of what customers expect.

With regard to the OP, no, the bigger western developers don't need to worry about a handful of relatively niche Japanese games getting a good critical reception. If they are sensible they will look at why those mechanics-heavy titles play well with the Gaf audience, but really with the budgets the big western publishers play with they want stuff that reliably appeals to a broad customer base, not relatively niche audiences.

Even looking at the biggest ones, Resident Evil has never threatened the big western shooters (and EA pretty much funded Dead Space to pare it down to the core of body-horror, haunted house and guns). Final Fantasy has gone from being a big hitter on PlayStation to being (comparatively) quite a way down the list, despite its huge dev time and budget.

Having said all that, one player's 'I don't like Japanese weirdness' is another's 'I love the oddball quirkiness, focus on mechanics and creative costume/monster design'. Japanese games will remain popular to a subset of the wider audience because they have multiple selling points that appeal to different players. However, I don't think they'll ever force the huge global publishers funding games designed to be massive cash-cows that are culturally neutral (to western audiences raised on exported US pop culture) to be wary of them. Those modern AAA games are designed from the ground up to tap into what western audiences have been raised on, and general Japanese quirkiness, so popular to western teenagers in the 90s and thus still with some of us in our 30s and 40s, doesn't have a chance now that the western pulp stuff that games revel in like sci-fi, fantasy and superheroes are culturally mainstream and on the telly every night.
 
I'd love it if we could stop dividing games up into 'japan' and 'not japan'. It made sense when the Japanese industry was greater than everything else on consoles combined but these days it's basically comparing the output of one country to the combined output of the dozens of countrys that make up 'the west' when their games industries are pretty sizeable. It just seems ridiculous to me to badge the entire games industries of pretty much every nation west of Russia under one banner and then suggest that one country has to compete with that combined output all at once. It's not as if all the cash ends up in one pot called 'western development', the main competitor of most western studios is other western studios, and smaller western devs have been just as likely as Japanese ones to collapse under the pressures of industry changes brought on by the AAA industry raising the bar of what customers expect.

With regard to the OP, no, the bigger western developers don't need to worry about a handful of relatively niche Japanese games getting a good critical reception. If they are sensible they will look at why those mechanics-heavy titles play well with the Gaf audience, but really with the budgets the big western publishers play with they want stuff that reliably appeals to a broad customer base, not relatively niche audiences.

Even looking at the biggest ones, Resident Evil has never threatened the big western shooters (and EA pretty much funded Dead Space to pare it down to the core of body-horror, haunted house and guns). Final Fantasy has gone from being a big hitter on PlayStation to being (comparatively) quite a way down the list, despite its huge dev time and budget.

Having said all that, one player's 'I don't like Japanese weirdness' is another's 'I love the oddball quirkiness, focus on mechanics and creative costume/monster design'. Japanese games will remain popular to a subset of the wider audience because they have multiple selling points that appeal to different players. However, I don't think they'll ever force the huge global publishers funding games designed to be massive cash-cows that are culturally neutral (to western audiences raised on exported US pop culture) to be wary of them. Those modern AAA games are designed from the ground up to tap into what western audiences have been raised on, and general Japanese quirkiness, so popular to western teenagers in the 90s and thus still with some of us in our 30s and 40s, doesn't have a chance now that the western pulp stuff that games revel in like sci-fi, fantasy and superheroes are culturally mainstream and on the telly every night.
The u.s. alone has consistently had higher output than Japan even at their peak alone outside of the nes/7800 if you only include consoles. It's just Japan has a higher output then most every other country combines, and sometimes Asian countries not Japan are put under japan.
 
I'm not the one who clamed that they were trying to increase western sales in the first place, just that yea, obviously the most successful of recent Japanese titles are heavily western inspired, which all things considered, is absolutely a good thing. That is absolutely undeniable.
Repeating your nonsense doesn't make it true.
 

Crossing Eden

Hello, my name is Yves Guillemot, Vivendi S.A.'s Employee of the Month!
Playing... what a shock that Japanese people play international titles.
While also mentioned that he didn't use ideas from those games for Zelda.

Reaching is not even the right word anymore.
Eiji Aonuma: What really got me more in Skyrim is when you walk and you enter a new city, there is a real shock. “Ah, there’s a city here! And, oh, she’s so different from the others! ” This is the first time I’ve felt this in a video game, so I wanted to duplicate it in Zelda, albeit in a slightly different way.
Why is this so hard for you to fathom?