Capcom lashes out at AIAS

Okami, Dead Rising publisher says it was snubbed from awards show for not paying up; AIAS says games did not make final ballot because they didn't have enough votes.

Almost all awards shows draw criticism from normal Joes and posh critics in some shape or form. Differences of opinion are a core element of human nature, and no awards show will ever end with everyone happy.

However, occasional oversights can be glaring and can be the topic of heated debate, whether in regard to the Academy Awards or to Most Valuable Player voting for Major League Baseball.

Last year, the Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences handed out its Annual Interactive Achievement Awards, as voted on by members of the AIAS. Curiously missing from the final nominations was Capcom's Resident Evil 4, the game that nearly swept other awards shows' choice for Game of the Year, including GameSpot's.

At the time, a representative from the AIAS told GameSpot that RE4 was not eligible for nomination because its publisher was not a member of the AIAS.

"According to the rules, you have to be a member for your game to be nominated," the AIAS rep said at the time. "There was a write-in option, and Resident [Evil 4] got written in, but [Capcom] chose not to play," the rep said.

Okami was lauded for its art direction by many but did not make the AIAS' finals in that category.

This year, when the nominations for the 10th Annual Interactive Achievement Awards were announced, two titles that gamers noticed were missing were a critically lauded pair from Capcom--Okami and Dead Rising. Like RE4 in 2005, these games were widely recognized by the gaming press in their Best of 2006 awards--Okami in particular.

That struck a chord with Capcom, which responded to inquiries from GameSpot about not having a game from its catalog up for an AIAS award for the last two years.

A Capcom representative issued a statement, which began, "According to the AIAS DICE website, 'Since 1998, the peer-based Interactive Achievement Awards are dedicated to recognizing the outstanding products, talented individuals, and ground-breaking development teams that have propelled the advancement of the multi-billion dollar worldwide entertainment software industry.' What the site neglects to mention is that a product, individual or development team cannot and will not be nominated for an award unless a company buys its way in to the AIAS."

Joseph Olin, president of the AIAS, denies finances and memberships were taken into consideration when the nominations were announced.

Olin told GameSpot, "Certainly this year, there were a number of titles from Capcom [and non-AIAS member] Eidos that were not submitted by the publisher or developer that were considered, ranked, evaluated, and voted on within our first voting process to become finalists by the academy's members."

Olin told GameSpot that some of the games were accepted as write-ins, but "they did not make the step from being a panel write-in to being a finalist in the category."

Resident Evil 4 was a no-show at the AIAS awards in 2006.

Capcom believes that its games were left off final ballots because the company would not pay the fees to become a member. "For last year's awards, so many voting members of the AIAS were upset that Resident Evil 4 was completely left off the list for awards consideration that the members themselves wrote in the game. Upon seeing the results of the write-in votes, Capcom Entertainment was contacted by the AIAS and told that the game would still not be eligible for any awards unless the company joined the organization. Our company was told, in essence, 'Pay to play,' a sentiment echoed in the quote from the AIAS representative."

"To be presented an award and be formally submitted, you have to be a member of the Academy of Arts and Sciences as a publisher," said Olin. The rule has been in place for many years; however, Olin concedes that it has only been enforced over the last three years.

"We ask people to become members long before the voting process begins. Especially with a publisher like Capcom, who pretty consistently every year has one or two titles that demonstrate great gamecraft."

Olin also said, "The Academy had contacted Capcom throughout the submissions and judging time period. And [RE4] was left on the ballot as a title for Console Game of the Year and Overall Game of the Year. It was not one of the five titles selected by the Academy peer panelists. The Academy contacted a number of publishers who were not members or members who had not submitted titles...the ONLY publisher of note that declined to participate was CAPCOM."

As for why the members-only rule is in place and enforced, Olin says that membership is necessary to keep the nonprofit company a purely independent organization. "The publishing communities and developing communities need to come together and...jointly fund the organization because ultimately they reap the benefits."

"As powerful a medium we are, we need an independent voice that is able to recognize singular accomplishments within the medium. The only way to do that is to involve all the various parties...have them put aside their natural competitive tendencies...and be able to speak as one voice as to what are the year's best games."

The AIAS confirmed to GameSpot that in addition to Capcom, publishers Tecmo, Majesco, and Eidos Interactive are also not members. Following the rule, no games from the aforementioned publishers have been nominated in the last three years (including this year's show).

Regardless of the show's rules, Capcom is still holding its ground. The publisher closes its statement with: "Capcom Entertainment would like to thank the gamers who have made Dead Rising and Okami so successful, the media who were similarly moved by the creativity and innovation found within the games and the teams at Capcom and Clover Studios who poured their outstanding passion, talent and creative energies into both ground-breaking games (coincidently, all things supposedly recognized by the Interactive Achievement Awards)."

Capcom has posted its full statement to GameSpot on its official forums.

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Discussion

413 comments
Pete5506
Pete5506

capcom............................no

Stabby
Stabby

Okami was such an original concept and Dead Rising was the zombie game we've been waiting for since the dawn of time... shame, just like RE4...

samad5
samad5

Its about time someone had the bloody balls to put these idiots that make up these awards in their place. I mean how the hell did Zelda: Twighlight Princess and Wii Sports get nominated for so many awards without there having been some sort of financial incentive? Both games are vastly overrated compared to the likes of Okami, FFVII, Dead Rising etc. They might as well make them the 'Nintendo Awards'.

crithon
crithon

last year..... it was odd to not see Resident Evil 4 and then see a bigger US and Euro developer nominations...... But Okami? Okami? No, that can't be. It's a game about helping people, healing the land and drawing. PLEASE Remove a game with guns and put in Okami. And it's a game with a female goddess, don't tell me Tomb Raider got a nomination. I know I sound like I'm too much of a fanboy, but this shut out is a huge over sight.

emceelokey
emceelokey

I'm with Capcom here. If it's good then it's good. If you are giving awards for all of gaming in general and Capcom makes a great game then is should be included. If Crave, Acclaim, and Koei were the only ones that paid for membership then games like Dynasty Warriors or whatever crappy game would be given honors just because the others didn't want to pay. BS! They say that they are an independent organization but are pretty much living off of bribes. No wonder I never heard of the AIAS. screw them.

MrSickVisionz
MrSickVisionz

"people who wright more than a paragraph on a gamespot board should get a life " What about the people who comment about it? Or in my case, the people commenting about the people commenting about it? At the end of the day its a message board and the whole point is to post messages. Besides, you don't feel it just hit your scroll wheel and go past it. Nobody is putting a gun to your head or saying you can win a Wii. HAHA, that was probally bad taste on the Wii comment.

matrixman2k
matrixman2k

Capcoms motto = spend less as possible for every project and reap maximum profits. I've seen that in many occasions. They simply will not push any hardware the work with near any limit in any area. Oh yeah and they like to milk things alot...

kpsikill
kpsikill

"Right. Capcom only got rid of the lead designer (Inaba) and the director (Kamiya). No one of consequence." -- jettokisora Capcom didn't got rid of them, THEY FREAKIN LEFT the company

vidplayer8
vidplayer8

Uh who are the AIAS? Never heard of them before. Does it really matter if they win an award from them? I always thought it was the amount of people who buy the games. The more units sold, the better it is. OKAMI and DEAD RISING and RESIDENT EVIL are some of the greatest games that have come out in the past 2-3 years.

Daytona_178
Daytona_178

all i have to say on this matter is..."you go capcom". They make great games so they dont need to take crap from some gay award!

gr8arm
gr8arm

A.I.A. ...who?.....cares?

Miracle_Air
Miracle_Air

I really don't care if Mikami and the others are still working there, those guys are good enough to work for their own division and therefore I feel they should leave Capcom. If they get the chance, I hope they do so in the future to have Okami 2 exclusively published by Clover Studios. Okami is a work of art as much as it is a game and I feel personally that was what the goal at clover was, a perfect mesh of the two. Capcom just released ANOTHER shooting game. Trust me, I have NOTHING against them, but I feel that Dead Rising and Lost Planet have brought nothing new to the table. Okami is one of the most artistically and innovative experience I have seen in a long time and coming from capcom who's last game I felt was innovative strictly because of the overhaul (Yes, I am refering to RE4), Clover studios should be restored so work can be started on Okami 2 and other artistically influenced games while Capcom works specifically on games like RE5, Dead Rising 2, etc. They're losing the ability to develop new games faster by working in one studio. Look at how soon things came out from them: August: Dead Rising Late Sptember: Okami January: Lost Planet Because of that extra studio, they got an EXTRA game in during that six month gap between Dead Rising and Lost Planet. Think of how soon other games could be made if Clover Studios got revived. It's not a matter of whether or not the people from Clover still have work, it's about the how fast games get out and WHAT kind of games get out.

jaefrmbk2k
jaefrmbk2k

i'm tryna think of the most snide & ignorant way of dismissing this "news". i'll be back

diablobasher
diablobasher

Yeah. Because Capcom needs awards and recognition from something i've never even heard of before...

Chief_Kuuni
Chief_Kuuni

well all the people that played the games knows that the games are great. We don't need AIAS to tell us any different, just cause they need money from the company. I think they're just greedy

Warfust
Warfust

It is real simple, CAPCOM should not be required to pay in order to receive the award or even to be considered for it. Even more so by an awards list that is supposed to be "dedicated to recognizing the outstanding products, talented individuals, and ground-breaking development teams that have propelled the advancement of the multi-billion dollar worldwide entertainment software industry". No pay no play is BS if you are saying you're all inclusive. They need to tack on "if you pay us be on the list you have a chance."

svenuce
svenuce

[quote]But you do realize that Capcom FIRED the team that created Okami soon after its release, right? [/quote] You do realize the everyone at Clover STILL works at Capcom except Inaba and Kimaya, right? They only eliminated a corporate entity and rolled them into normal Capcom R&D. Even Mikami is still at Capcom.

ewmgreendawg
ewmgreendawg

looks liek the AIAS is losing some credibility now. oh and for expane: you don't just pay what they ask you. How do you think our independence was won? we revolted. we fought. we didn't want to pay money for bs reasons. you don't just walk like a zombie through life and not question anything. It's not even an American thing it's a human thing. always question authority if your not totally ok with whats going on.

jettokisora
jettokisora

Okay, well I suppose many of you are happy to ignore reason and bash AIAS anyway. But you do realize that Capcom FIRED the team that created Okami soon after its release, right?

Chirico_Cuvie
Chirico_Cuvie

Awards shmawards, Capcom got the revenue so big deal. I don't think anyone here buys a game based on an AIAS award. The award comes out the following year anyway, when 75% of the people that were going to buy the game got it already. I can see the stance that Capcom is taking, these "non-profit" associations that do nothing but give some award, as long as the parties pay their pound of flesh, are common to every industry. You aren't buying the award - although some are as bad as that - but you are buying the ability to win. I'd like to see the dollar amount for this membership, it's probably some stupid-high amount like $200,000 a year. Money better spent on development IMHO. Reminds me of the stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. They make a big deal when somebody gets one, when in fact all it takes is about $14k and monthly "upkeep" fee to the Chamber of Commerce.

fahad2mail
fahad2mail

This is a very good game indeed.

novicegamplagrl
novicegamplagrl

Capcom doesn't need AIAS to be recognized for their work. We as fans know how great their work is. Thank you Capcom, keep of the good work.

FrankieLA
FrankieLA

The fact that Okami didn't get recognized by the AIAS has discredited the awards altogether. If Capcom is getting snubbed because of money then there is no chance in hell an independent game from a small dev/pub will ever get recognized.

Expane
Expane

I't can't be that expsensive. I don't like paying GW Bush to send 20 year olds to Iraq to die, but I still pay my taxes. Sometimes you just pay what they ask even if you don't agree with it.

lvlUNE3B
lvlUNE3B

I guess Capcom don't need those awards.

ragnbull
ragnbull

too bad Capcom closed Clover Studios anyway.

Bozanimal
Bozanimal

Since when has an award sold more games? When a movie wins an Oscar, it increases rentals; not so with video games. The games in question were highly rated in the trade mags with highest circulation. To hell with the AIAS.

qiwihead
qiwihead

The AIAS is either seriously hurting for money or they are completely clueless. After two years of snubbing some great Capcom games, what gamer or developer is going to take the AIAS awards seriously? They can complain all they want about needing member dues to stay afloat, but does the AMPAS, the organization that gives out Oscars, require they be paid before you are eligible? No, they don't, and they are a private organization, too. By keeping this members-only rule, the AIAS has completely destroyed their credibility.

darkDemyze
darkDemyze

Looks like someone is being stuck up. *cough* Capcom *cough*. Either way it's not stopping them from pushing some great games and pulling in the cash. Whether Capcom ponies up the dough, for a bunch of people to say "Yup, this game was good", or not they will still get the green. Many of the games such as aforementioned RE4 show that a game doesn't need to be put on a pedestal to be a good game or sell a lot of copies.

Game13a13y
Game13a13y

of course there's money invovled in those silly game of the year award. its the matter of who pays more gets it. otherwise, why woudln't they just let "us" THE gamers to choose what's the best game of the year, instead, no they have to have a few editors to decide for us. and we will probably NEVER gonna see any fair game awards, otherwise, how will these gaming websites etc etc make their money? think people...

LosDaddie
LosDaddie

Okami should be recognized for its art style.

Sanguis_Malus
Sanguis_Malus

Its always the real workers that suffer, awards are not ultimately important the consumers appreciation is. Thats the irony, the hard workers deserve praise for jobs that they do, the fat-cats make money from sales either way.

Legacyoftain
Legacyoftain

Seems a lil fishy that Okami AND RE:4 didnt get nominated lol....perhaps if AIES did this with a company like...EDIOS or somthing then the story would have some validity but Capcom bought the heat this year thats for sure.....on a COMPLETELY unrelated side note *wink wink*..I can't WAIT till "The Queen" wins best picture over "Last King of Scotland" or "The Departed" for best film in the Oscars

quietguy
quietguy

I smell a money-scandal in the process

ReaperXxxx
ReaperXxxx

The AIAS is nothing more than a money-making racket. The fact that only their "member" studios and publishers are eligible to be nominated makes them nothing more than an irrelevant joke.

ghsacidman
ghsacidman

Reward shows are all about who pays the most.... WHO KNEW? Atleast Capcom is trying to do something about it though, thats cool. Plus, if Resident Evil 4 didn't get an award... that show is obviously bogus. Cause Res 4 was one of the best games ever created.

LorddG
LorddG

CAPCOM: Don't worry about what the snobs at AIAS say... whether they recognize your great games or not, you have the commercial and critical success for these games and THAT'S ALL THAT MATTERS. An award from them won't boost the already impressive sales of these games. Don't pay that damned "membership fee" and just put that money in to making RE5 the best one in the series. Ever. CAPCOM, you keep busting out the hits, and I'll keep giving you my money!! However, this "God Hand" game for PS2..... we need to talk.....

Rect_Pola
Rect_Pola

"... Clover Studios who poured their outstanding passion... " Considering they were the ones who shut down such a fount of creativity, their frustration now may be karma.

snarple_basic
snarple_basic

Only question i have is how much is it for a company like Capcom to buy in. Im sure if it wasn't much they would have bought in. I can understand a company that gives out awards wanting some kind of compensation from the video game industry, but at the same time it does look fishy if a big company like Capcom isn't wanting to join because of money issues. Its odd to me that Nintendo and others have seem to have no problem sending some money in just to be apart of there awards. Hmmm kind of odd.

raziellich
raziellich

Why does this matter? Because the people who work hours upon hours working on these games deserve credit for thier accomplishments. And to see others get awarded and to not even be considered because you don't want to pay your way in is an injustice.

rpgisforme
rpgisforme

To Capcom, Who cares what games are nominated by the AIAS? As long as us, the people who buy and play your games love you and continue to enjoy the awesome games your talented people create. In the end, we the gamers are the only ones that matter. We are the ones that purchae the games and keep you in business, not the AIAS. Keep up the good work Capcom. Long live the RE series!

Gamewako
Gamewako

I equate this to, say, John Malcovich boycotting the SAGG awards...in other words...WHO CARES?

Icekxg
Icekxg

Has anyone even heard of the AIAS awards? Even more so...does anyone care what games they nominate? In the end, the only person who can say a game is "great" is the guy cashing the check.

chrisdojo
chrisdojo

who cares about some dumb awards? just make some more classic style megaman games!!!

Seiki_sands
Seiki_sands

Question: Are the AIAS awards independent? In order to answer that question we ask, who votes for the awards? Answer: Some, but not all, of the publishers who make money off the games, vote for the awards. Bottom Line: NOT INDEPENDENT In order for the awards to be independent 1 of 2 circumstances MUST exist 1. The people voting make no money off of the games, directly or indirectly. or 2. All publishers of games under discussion are allowed to vote equally. If the AIAS wants to say that Capcom's games were not under discussion, that they were merely write-ins, then to maintain their independence they must take two actions. 1. They must ban write-ins all together 2. Admit that their awards celebrate the best of their members contributions to gaming ONLY. In short, make clear that they DO NOT represent the best in games as a whole.

JamesHetfield89
JamesHetfield89

"How independent can they be if they are recieving money from the companies that make the games they vote on? How can they be independent if they can only "recognize singular accomplishments within the medium" when the companies have to pay them to be recognized." Its been said before, but the massive amount of people who chose to comment just give capcom the benefit of the doubt because they make good games... Think of it like this : The AIAS is an alliance of game makers from many companies in the industry. Ray Muzyka of bioware, happens to be just one of the directors. When companies join the AIAS, they get to vote for the awards. Its independent because the only people voting for these awards, are people that make the games themselves. People from Nintendo, Microsoft, SCEA, EA, Ubisoft, Bioware. Just because its a nonprofit doesn't mean it can operate without money. This is all really really simple to understand...

thekey
thekey

It's obvious that some one at the AIAS DOESN'T like capcom. (BUT THE SAYING GOES "If you want to play you got to pay) apparently the(Academy of Interactive Arts and Sciences ) knows everything. Who are we?