Friday, March 23, 2012

Don't Give The Death Sentence to Japanese Games.



Where would we be without
Parappa?

I have to applaud this writer, not only for originality on the topic because so few people discuss it, but his candidness about the current gaming market.


He goes by the name Justin on Platformnation.com. Not an official reviewer, just a casual blogger. But he brings up some good points about the need for game devs to not jump on the “Westernization” band-wagon.

I am not shy to admit that I love Japanese video games. They have a flavor to them that you can’t find anywhere else. People may try to imitate, but can never replicate. And while yes, the past few years there has been an increasing demand for more Western games, Eastern developers shouldn’t cave in to the hype. Why? Because they are losing a piece of their cultural identity by attempting to emulate another region’s style. All of the awesome and crazy and weird things that make Japan, Japan will be removed, and do we really want that?
Take my beloved Katamari Damacy for example. That is a crazy ass game that only the Japanese could make. But think about it. With Katamari, we wouldn’t have the oddball creations that are Little Big Planet and Minecraft, both utilizing the cultural and unique system Katamari created and turning it into their own pieces.
And then you look at developers like Nintendo. Clearly they have world-wide appeal, but what makes them so loveable is that they have stuck to their values. They do the things that only Nintendo can do, and do the things that are distinctly Eastern in traditions. What’s wrong with keeping things the same, as I’ve said once before?

There also isn’t anything wrong with trying out new things. Moving a franchise such as Resident Evil (where you can now walk while you shoot, oh my god!) to tweak and add new things that may appeal to more a more Western audience is fine. It’s this believe that Japanese games are dead and we should focus solely on Western appeal is a little backwards. Last I checked, Dragon Quest, a strictly Japanese game, is still one of the best selling series. I love it because it does all of the things that you don’t get from Western games. It has charm, humor, action, and honor that you won’t find in Mass Effect. Not saying that you don’t get that in ME, but there’s a method to the madness that is DQ where you can’t get that type of game anywhere except Japan.
There needs to be a balance between the cultures to produce content that doesn’t destroy one’s identity while allowing them to progress forward to incorporate new concepts. What that balance is, I’m not sure. But to outright state that the Japanese gaming market will die would be an exaggeration.

0 comments:

Post a Comment

Thank you for taking the time to leave a comment.

We ask that you please do not include any offensive, sexist, or derogatory language - otherwise your comment will be removed.