PlatinumGames: “Japanese games companies have lost their vigor”

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In a post entitled “Platinum Next – The Japanese Standard Bearer in Global Competition,” Tatsuya Minami, CEO of Platinum Games, has touched on the widely discussed topic of the current state of the Japanese gaming industry.

Following recent developmental success with titles such as Bayonetta and Vanquish, Minami says his focus is to steer Platinum Games in becoming a leading Japanese studio in the “competitive global video game market,” before commenting that original games are in decline and that fellow Japanese games companies “have lost their vigor.”

Such a situation, he says, “deeply saddens” him.

His message in its entirety is as follows:

These past five years have flown by.

When we established our company with the credo “deliver smiles and surprises around the world”, our staff at the time were determined that quality should never be compromised. We dubbed the new company PlatinumGames with the hope that it would be symbolic of permanent brilliance. Since then, each and every member of PlatinumGames has worked together creating these games.

Five years later, we have delivered several titles to players worldwide. The effort expended was well worth it; at last, I feel the PlatinumGames brand has truly been recognized.

Today, we open our eyes and set our sights on a new course, under the auspices of a new guiding principle. As stated, we aim to be the Japanese standard bearer in the competitive global video game market.

I believe that games exist to offer fresh surprises to those who play them. As members of the games business, we have always pursued the creation of the new, and we take pride in doing our part to support our industry.

However, the current games business is struggling. The “fresh surprises” I mention are becoming few and far between, especially in our home of Japan. Not so long ago, Japan lead the world’s games business, and it was not a stretch to call games a uniquely Japanese specialty; however, now it appears that Japanese games companies have lost their vigor.
Series grow ever-longer; original titles are on the decline. Games with new at their core are disappearing. Japanese games that garner worldwide acclaim are slipping away.

This state of affairs deeply saddens us.

When we turn this mirror on ourselves, I feel it is fair to say that PlatinumGames is currently one of the very few healthy Japanese games companies. I also came to realize that we must now consider our work in creating games to be that of a mandate.

“The Japanese Standard Bearer in Global Competition”. At PlatinumGames, we strive to be the face of Japanese game studios on the worldwide stage. We want our contributions to not only be towards the games industry as a whole, but also be contributions towards our homeland of Japan. That is the principle that will guide our company into the future.
We aim to bring happiness to gamers worldwide. We seek to ignite a Japanese games revival. And our troops will have the highest morale.

We’re in this fight for the long haul.

Tatsuya Minami
President and CEO
PlatinumGames Inc.
Spring 2011

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