Inafune: Japanese industry like “a frog in a well”, “close-minded”

Thursday, 8th March 2012 02:35 GMT By Brenna Hillier

In an inflammatory presentation at GDC 2012, Mega Man creator and Resident Evil producer Keiji Inafune told the Japanese games industry to pull its finger out.

“The Japanese games industry has become like a frog in a well. It is very closed minded,” Inafune said in a talk called The Future of Japanese Games, as reported by Develop.

“There is a conscience and desire to win missing. We, the Japanese, have forgotten all about that. Back in the day we grew used to winning. At some point these winners became losers, and not acknowledging or accepting that has lead to the tragic fate of Japanese games.”

The former Capcom staffer said he is embarrassed to travel overseas where he feels Japanese games come across as a “blast from the past“.

“They are now just great, great memories,” he said of Japan’s influence on gaming.

“Perhaps the folks who are now running the show in the Japanese games industry are those who simply jumped on a bandwagon. The creations that measured up to global standards were crafted by our predecessors.”

Inafune said his fellow creators won’t end up on top unless they can admit he is correct about the current state of Japanese games.

“There is something you must do to win. You must acknowledge your loss, and start over again. We are humans, and have our own pride, but we cannot win if we keep that pride up. We must believe ‘I will win,’” he said.

Having himself left a comfortable position at a major publisher, Inafune warned against taking the “easy” route and relying on brands. According to tweets from attendees, he said his current project is an action game for Vita with a new hero.

Inafune’s comments have not met with universal approval, although they have had a better reception than indie Phil Fish’s similar line.



  1. TD_Monstrous69

    Wow, this guy just can’t go one convention without blasting Japanese game development, can he? Sheesh….just kidding, his point’s still pretty valid. It almost seems like if it’s something coming from Japan that isn’t a fighting game, it almost doesn’t even seem like it’s worth playing. Sure, there have some greats here and there to come out, but almost nothing that really pushes the bar forward in game development coming from Japan, and it kinda makes me sad to type that. For if it wasn’t for Japan, games might not exist as they do today.

    #1 3 years ago
  2. Ireland Michael

    Asian dude says it, its a valid point.

    White guy says it, its a big fucking drama.


    #2 3 years ago
  3. Telepathic.Geometry

    Irish guy says you’re a plastic paddy, that’s one thing, but if some English dude said it, ohhh, it’s on!

    #3 3 years ago
  4. ManuOtaku

    I dont know but i dont agree with him, most of my favorite games from the past gen, and also most of my favorite games of this gen as well came from japanese developers,and i do find those games really great,IMHO they dont lack anything compare with western related tittles.

    #4 3 years ago
  5. Gekidami

    Inafune: [A long interview on what he thinks is wrong with the Japanese games industry, and what needs to be changed about it].

    Phil Fish: “Your games suck”, followed by: “My delivery could have been more tactful, but I do think most modern Japanese games are god-damn awful”.

    If you dont understand what the difference is, look up the term ‘Constructive criticism’.

    #5 3 years ago
  6. Joe Musashi

    Yeah, there’s a metric fuck-ton of difference between the background & way Inafune and Fish express themselves.

    Making out they’re the same just to pretend the audience has double standards is pretty idiotic.


    #6 3 years ago
  7. stealth

    His point is not valid

    Japan has made the best games for 90 percent of the genres……..

    Hell rpg, platformer, fighting they just plain run away with it……….

    The only games ive played this year are

    beyond the labrynth ( konami rpg), suikoden psp ( konami rpg) , devil survivor 2 ( atlus rpg), 13-2 ( square rpg), kingdom of A

    Kingdom of A was so generic, it was hard to even finish

    #7 3 years ago

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