Mega Man and Dead Rising designer Keiji Inafune has opened up on the state of the Japanese game industry. Speaking to IGN, the former Capcom developer said Japanese studios are beginning to become aware of the "problem," but still have a ways to go.
"I hope Japanese game developers are breaking through the stagnation," Inafune said. "However, the reality isn't as good as I want it to be. I see they’re starting to be aware of the problem and that they have to do something. They know they have to learn more from Western games and create games that'll sell more in the western market. However, they don’t know what to do or how to do it."
One of the main reasons Japanese developers are coming up short, Inafune argued, is due to pride.
"Even worse, their pride gets in the way, preventing them from learning from overseas developers. As a result, they end up staying in the domestic market rather than going global," he said.
Inafune said he appreciates the Western media's interest in and concern about the health of the Japanese game industry. He noted that continuing to ask "Is Japan's game industry OK?" helps hammer home the point that something may be amiss.
"So we much appreciate the fact that the world is concerned, however, [Japanese developers] still don’t really get it," he said. "Some developers are saying [the] Japanese game industry is still doing fine, but that's wishful thinking. Words are not enough, we must act and prove it. Unless at least a few titles from Japan make it to the top 10 games of the year worldwide, we won’t prove it."
Inafune has long been vocal about the state of Japanese game development. He left Capcom in 2010 and founded new companies Intercept and Comcept the next year. His latest game is PlayStation Vita title Soul Sacrifice, which launches April 30.