We have to admit, we've been really impressed by Xbox's efforts in Japan as of late, especially its recent Tokyo Game Show livestream, which was jam packed with Japan-flavoured Game Pass announcements. As it turns out, this doesn't look like the end of Xbox's upward trajectory in the Japanese market - far from it. Team Xbox's Phil Spencer and Sarah Bond have recently gone on record to say that Xbox is continuing to build in the region, including the creation of original Japanese titles.
Bond spoke with IGN Japan about all things Xbox at TGS, and how the team is looking to build original games for the region. When asked if players should expect more Xbox Games Studios titles along the lines of Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey, Bond said:
"Completely [...] One of the things that I’m super excited about is that we have over 250 developers in Japan developing games for Xbox right now. 150 have already shipped, 100 of them are in Game Pass and we [just] got to announce 15 titles made in Asia and 13 in Japan."
Over at Japanese site Game Watch, Xbox boss Phil Spencer made similar comments on Xbox's commitment to the region, as translated by VGC:
"It’s not too much to hope for. We’ve just met with Kojima-san from Kojima Productions and many other game creators to talk about bringing unique titles to the Xbox."
"We understand that many game fans want that. We are also aware of the common desire for games from Japan. We are working on creating such titles, so please look forward to it."
The news that Xbox is seemingly looking to build on its Japanese portfolio in-house will be welcome to many. The two titles mentioned, Blue Dragon and Lost Odyssey, launched right at the start of the Xbox 360 era, and we've not seen a similar first-party push since.
Of course, with Xbox's acquisition of Bethesda, Japanese studio Tango Gameworks is now under the Xbox banner, so that's one such team creating Xbox first party titles. As for any others? We'll just have to wait and see.
What do you make of this? Excited to see Xbox make strides in Japan? Let us know in the comments!
[source videogameschronicle.com, via youtube.com]
I hope xbox collaborates with Hironobu Sakaguchi again
Sequel to Blue Dragon/Lost Odyssey are welcome
However another kind of games like Fantasian also great
Xbox should consider partnering with Falcom (or just acquire them for game pass). They are making lots of great JRPGs like Ys, Legend of Heroes, Xanadu, etc. Most of their games are story heavy and the stories are interesting. An original games with Xbox's budget would be awesome. Maybe with Media.Vision as support developer (developer of Wild Arms series)
I really hope Phantom Dust gets to see the light of day again
Let me say again: if you have any interest in JRPGs, Ni No kuni is one of the best.
Got it installed and once I'm done with Prey it is the next game on my to-play list 😁 Then again I do have Dragon Quest 11 S also installed. Choices, choices. Oh, that reminds me. It's great to have these choices 😉
Blue Dragon 2 will do just nice!
Does MS own the IP for blue dragon and/or lost odyssey?
They should also of jumped on trying to get some deal for Black Myth: Wukong as soon as that was announced. I know its more Chinese developed but based on the same story as Lost Odyssey. I am sure that they have a number of Japanese made games - just not all of them are 'typically' associated as being 'Japanese'.
Resident Evil for example or even Sonic isn't really thought of as 'Japanese' but of course are made by Japanese Studio's. I know people think of Final Fantasy and other JRPG's, or maybe those 'button bashing, combo building fighting games, those games that typify Japanese culture, humour and stories.
Those type of Japanese games are quite thin - although they have improved in the last 4-5yrs although some were not that big (Scarlet nexus, Code Vein) and others had released on PS like the Yakuza series and Persona games. I would assume that most of the games made in Japan that release on Xbox tend to be the ones that are more 'global' than very 'Japanese' and/or games that could have been made anywhere from a small indie developer up to a AAA big team studio.
If you want to have a 'presence' somewhere in a business sense, you need to offer a Product to appeal to the people and when competing against 'Local' rivals, that becomes a much more difficult prospect - especially if they are nationalists too - Buy Japanese, Buy British, Buy Made in the US. They will 'never' compete on an even playing field - so any 'gains', which we are seeing with sales of Series S/X vs XB1 and even 360/O.G is showing growth - already sold more consoles than they did Last gen so that's a gain. So whatever MS has done in the past 4-5 yrs to get this growth, must be working and as Xbox 'grows' in Japan, the more devs will be inclined to put their games on Xbox.
I don't play any of the Japanese games I could on Playstation so I personally don't care that I can't/couldn't play them on Xbox but I do enjoy many Japanese made games and appreciate that there are Xbox gamers who are hoping to see more and more Japanese games coming to match/rival the competition.
Loved both of those games, especially Lost Odyssey. Great stories and gameplay. Would love for continuations or new IPs.
With Sony locking off the Final Fantasy series, some sort of exclusive JRPG like Blue Dragon or Lost Odyssey would be more than welcome.
Mainly a PS player but if they pull Mistwalker back into console gaming, please, please do so
I could care less about "original" games. Get EDF back on Xbox where it belongs. Xbox360 had an exclusive one, now they get ported to every platform EXCEPT Xbox.
That's what I like to hear!
@fizban3332 @SplooshDmg eh no pretty sure the Blue Dragon games on the DS credit MS. Although Mistwalker has something going on MS does have IP ownership of both if I recall correctly.
You can see MS is credited. I’m sure they could have forced an Xbox version if they wanted to hit at that point they stopped going after Japan.
@SplooshDmg you’d think but they actually own 4 Japanese IPs, Blue Dragon, Lost Odyssey, Infinite Undiscovery, and Scalebound.
Which is why Platinum can’t release Scaledbound without MS involved.
I can't imagine "Scalebound" being much other than a name trademark at this point. There was never a game to build an IP on.
All i want is octopath 2 altho I am looking forward to finally playing suikoden
Sounds like they also have 1st/3rd party games in development, good to hear. Can't wait to see what they are coming up with. All kind of Japanese games are welcome.
Music to my ears. Open the checkbook MS.
@NEStalgia @SplooshDmg Project Dragon is supposed to be a MH clone and Kamiya took the combat and put it into Bayo 3. I mean I get it because Platinum has been sniffing MS lately, and it’s great concept for a game. But I’m not sure anyone else can do Platinum style combat and that’s why you play Platinum game is the combat.
The only thing IO is working on is a Bond game using the Hitman engine.
How about working on getting Lost Odyssey to run at 4k60fps?
@mousieone Yeah, but platinums problem is they're a one trick pony, and their one trick has a single niche...... Abd still competes with dmc and now ff which is also just dmc. They're a big top heavy studio that just doesn't sell that much content and they're dependent on contracts that are worth more than their return. Nier was an accidental gold mine. Bayonetta alone wouldn't keep the lights on. And Nintendo bought back the rights to astral chain... No doubt securing their investment from trouble, and platinum certainly needed the cash.
Well, Platinum should be selling their engine the same way everyone relies on that Unreal trash lately. We need more games that play like DMC with nice fluid combat and less clunky messes. I never understood how Capcom could release DMC, RE, and Dead Rising all in the same gen but the other two games control like such utter ***** it's unbelievable.
@NEStalgia Nier wasn’t a surprise Gold mine. Yoko Taro makes good stories but needed the snappy combat to go with it. See Nier games are meant for multiple play throughs but if the combat is a drag you don’t like doing that.
@SplooshDmg I thought Certain Affinity was making the Halo BR? Eh I can’t keep up.
@mousieone I meant a surprise gold mine for platinum. It wasn't supposed to be their game and it fell in their lap.
@SplooshDmg Yeah, exactly that. Nier may save them with square but it's not THAT big a seller for their bloated dev style. And why DID Bayonetta 3 take over 5 years to make? That Nintendo bridge may already be smoldering.
THIS is exactly what I wanted to hear from Team Xbox. I hope they bring them all west! My wallet is ready!
@mousieone capcom can do it without them on DMC4 & DMC5. Ninja Theory also capable, look at DMC reboot
I could see Microsoft investing heavily & growing Tango Gameworks. Then go after Pocket Pair as that's now them developing there second title for Xbox, Palworld with a similar goal. As well as splash some cash.
@SplooshDmg @NEStalgia sighs https://twitter.com/matpiscatella/status/1572230274028826624?s=46&t=EaMn6_fsJoy368otPUhRZw
I can’t even fathom why a CoD from 3 years ago still charts ….
._. This is why we get no nice things.
@mousieone woof... That's such a depressing chart. I can kinda get Madden especially this year with it being a commemorative title. I don't even like football and I'm nostalgic for the guy. Mostly from the Ace hardware commercials though
Honestly I'm more depressed about Hipster's Row at #2 than about CoD from 3 years ago. At least CoD is an icon and that was a more well received entry than this year's, even if I don't understand why or how CoD is an icon or who actually finds it fun. Hipster's Row is just.....it's everything wrong with everything, dressed in purple.
This sort of thing is exactly what has been missing from Xbox for me.
@NEStalgia Astral Chain sold well, and despite taking a while, Bayo 3 seems to be shaping up nicely. If anything, their relationship with Nintendo could be stronger than ever at this point.
@Ralizah We'll see how sales go and what happens. But I do have to wonder what went on in that protracted Bayo3 dev time. I said it above, but I previously assumed Nintendo was just withholding it for the right moment from a release schedule standpoint, but the fact that they're dropping it casually between megaton releases makes me think it really wasn't ready and something was going on with development that dragged out. If that really was true the Nintendo relationship might be strained. Of course if B3 is a smash hit that would be forgotten. (And of course Pikmin 4 has been nearly complete for like 8 years.... )
@NEStalgia I mean... when were they supposed to release it? It's not launching near a comparable type of game from Nintendo. Nobody is going to not get this because Splatoon and Pokemon are releasing soon.
The worse timing is that NieR Automata is also releasing on Switch in October. And at a cheaper price point, to boot.
@Ralizah I'm going to not get it because Splatoon XC3 and Rabbids are released/ing.... I'll get it someday.
They had long stretches over 2 years or so without a whole lot in the way of major 1st party releases where the game was supposedly "done", and it would have given it a bigger spotlight. I still assumed they were waiting for some "right" moment to market it, because why else would they hold back a "ready" game like that despite not much else going on at times. Then they release it in October during a time where almost every other major IP they own has a release launching within a 5 month window except Mario. That doesn't seem like "we're holding this game for the right marketing moment" and sounds more like "This game isn't ready to release...ok, now it is."
I mean it's Nintendo, they might have been waiting until exactly 2037 grains of rice were aligned in their bowl to form the face of Mario because the producer thought that was a good luck charm and have no other reason. But otherwise it still conveys that there was some sort of development hangup until now.
As long as they can continue to have all Atlus games like Persona 6 ported over I will be happy
@SplooshDmg oh I don’t disagree but the PS chart is a lot more varied. I know why; more people. But with the smaller player base; it cuts into what does and does not sell on the platform unfortunately
@NEStalgia Saints Row is a huge game for Xbox players. I don’t get it, but ._. here we are.
@SplooshDmg how do you diversify when the largest chunk of Mr. John Q only likes the same things and that who will spend 70+ a year buying the same game with a roster update.
It’s the reason why GP is great but the downside is that gamer will still spend money on the roster update and play the JRPG in GP.
Well your PC anyway thus not really part of the problem.
@NoLifeDGenerate Clunky controls are a game design matter, and have nothing to do with the underlying tech (RE Engine, UE4, etc.). Unless you're talking about poor performance, which I hear is an issue in some versions of RE2/3 and especially DR4.
That said, Platinum has made an engine that can pull off 60fps on potato hardware, so that is something worth licensing out. Imagine if Game Freak borrowed a high-performing rendering engine like that, for example!
@Ralizah I’ve heard Nier runs like poop on Switch. It might do alright but I feel Bayo really has no competition.
@SplooshDmg wait I know we can clone @NEStalgia that should solve the problem quite nicely.
@mousieone LOL! Does PXB have enough storage capacity for the text generated by all my clones though?
It's not just Xbox, Hipster's Row is just huge in general, PS, too. And I find that terrifying.
I'm not sure diversification is an Xbox problem anymore. The PS list is almost identical, but with MLB (another $70 roster update) (which is only not on the list on XB because it's on GP), GT7 swapped for Forza, Spiderman swapped for CoD-32-bit Edition, and somehow almost inexplicably SH2 on the chart (which I still don't know how.)
Sadly the major public will never buy JP games. It defiles their sense of "adult" (which seems to consist of imitating life, only darker, and grittier, with as much blood as possible, but no skin, please, unless it's blood-drenched. Very mature.) So really it's PS/XB fighting over who gets the niche audience already in place. PS gets it because they previously had it, and the audience hasn't had incentive to switch at all. It's a rough process, because before they can convince any JP gamer to switch platforms because it's better, faster, cheaper, whatever.....they first need to acquire the entire catalog of games that audience wants, even if that audience hasn't arrived yet. Otherwise they can never convince them to switch.
Fortunately it's only a few billion do buy the catalog, so no biggie.
In some ways (loathe as I am to say it) is the question WHY does MS want to aggressively acquire that JP games niche? It's not really even a drop of water in the ocean of the market. Though it's a spend-happy niche which might be the point.
Nier runs like poop on a PS4 Pro....it's really not surprising it's sub-par on Switch
@SplooshDmg I'm still not convinced Forspoken is not going to be rubbish no matter what PS-exclusivity-tinted glasses have to say about it. I've really seen nothing that looks short of mediocre-to-awful about it to date.
@SplooshDmg The weird thing is that Star Ocean 6 is on the Xbox Windows Store....but not the PC Windows Store. Maybe it's a Steam-paid exclusive? Seems crazy weird that it's on XB/Win store but not on PC.
@SplooshDmg It's weird though, everyone fights over Squeenix games, and then Squeenix reports they all under-performed in sales and were failures. And it's pretty much the same niche that buys them all no matter what store it's on.
But you know life is weird when Soul Hackers 2 is on Xbox ,but not on Switch, and Star Ocean is on Xbox but not PC Windows store.
Soul Hackers 2, btw, is an old fashioned grindy (keep repeating the dungeon for new quest objectives) game...but somehow it's satisfyingly addictive so far. I only squeeze so much in between Splatoon and Xenoblade but it makes a great handheld type game (streamed from XSS.)
@SplooshDmg I'm pretty sure they were unhappy with FFXV sales at first. They just don't comment on anything else though.
LOL, that's hilarious they're officially free of debt after selling off that bundle of the company. Yeah, that's a crazy bundled debt hole they sold and explains the sale price. ($1bn for the company. 470.8bn to the banks the company owes money to....) It's like "Buy this Xbox absolutely free + $500 handling"
I think the SH2 problem is they stupidly used Unity and it's not well optimized, so it can chug at times on XSS. Switch was probably impossible.
You're misinformed. Early previews seem to be calling it one of the best ports on the system.
They're both new (for the player base) Platinum games featuring action combat releasing in October. One is also an open world RPG, sure, but it's still Platinum competing with itself.
@Ralizah well the people I heard it from tried it at the Tokyo Game Show and were not impressed but they aren’t official publications. They were, however, very impressed by Crisis Core which looks more like a remake less like a remaster.
@mousieone I can't speak to anecdotes. Early impressions seem positive, and pre-release footage of the End of YoRHa edition looks solid as well.
@Ralizah same but everything is anecdotal until DF or someone like that runs it through their testing if I’m honest. Everyone thought GoG looked amazing until DF said it was 1080p. Still look good to me either way but you know.
Anyway it’s friends of mine who went so that’s why I personally trust them but you know it’s a friend so. I’m sure it doesn’t really matter how it runs when it comes to sales potential on Switch. Unless it’s complete trash and even then..
@SplooshDmg that first paragraph..... Really makes me wonder why we support square ....
Yeah, unity. Not only did they use it but it proudly and prominently displays the logo on the launch screen which I'm not sure I've seen any commercial game do ever. SEEEEGAAA! I have no idea why atlus or Sega does the things they do. Lucky for them, square exists to make their own stupid randomness look like a well executed strategy.
@SplooshDmg omg I finally just got around to watching the Sony and Nintendo directs. So. Many. Games. Ps exclusive Japanese games, multiplat Japanese games. Switch games. Some game with Teal'c that looks ok ish. Indeed. Then starfield. And ac mirage and ac Japan.
So. Many. Games. I can't afford them all. Even if I could I couldn't play them all. They're all like hundred hour games. And this time next year I won't have started any of them because 8 bought Splatoon and I can quit any time I want to, I just don't want to
Yeah the thing with se is it's like Nintendo. Nobody else makes what se makes that feels like an se masterpiece. But... Only like 10% of their output is that and the rest is forgettable indie grade shovel ware or pure dreck that makes haze look like saving private (Jim) Ryan.
Setting the bar at "better than forces" is like saying "if it runs better than E.T. it's a QA success!
@SplooshDmg Triangle Strategy is superb. Definitely my favorite of the Team Asano HD-2D series to date. It feels like a lost PS1 classic.
@NEStalgia do we need Push? I think if ditched that size the server should have enough capacity for your clones. <~~~ just a joke.
Ms wants to diversify GP and that’s why they are being agreesice toward Japanese games. Ultimately they want xCloud to succeed and that’s going to require global audiences. You often quote the statistic that most revolves around Scarlet Nexus and touch controls.
@Ralizah I loved and didn't love the Triangle demo. It has a lot going for it but gameplay is so slow, slower than FE, and I take forever with grid-based games spending like 5 minutes considering every move (and still getting it wrong.) It felt like "why not just play FE instead?"
@mousieone But we need Push because PXB refuses to review or acknowledge the existence of J-games not named "Persona" or made by Kojima.
I was thinking about this conversation while reading Push today, actually. More depressing articles about how Sony is just ignoring the J-games niche (that aren't named FF or fall into the Soulsborne-alike niche.) And, while it's a minority of a minority, a portion of J-games fans ARE taking notice and ARE disgruntled with PS as effectively not worthwhile as long as it's not really a focused weeb console. There's absolutely an opportunity if MS pushes hard enough to get the catalog here to take advantage of that crack and start pulling J-games fans toward XB if they do it right. I think they know that and they're trying hard to get the right landscape to do that. There's certainly plenty of loyal fans that will stick with whatever PS offers, and the ones that will point out "but game x, y, and z aren't on XB", but I think if MS can close MOST of those gaps, they can have a compelling position to make a chunk of the weeb market move over, and once there's a foothold, it's easier to get more to follow. And yeah, xCloud is their only real bet to entrench XB in the Japan market itself which is also valuable. "Stadia" style buying and playing games in the cloud is coming to expand the cloud beyond just the 100+ GP offerings du jour. That will expand that market too, particularly outside the US/UK/EU markets.
""why not just play FE instead?"
Vastly better level design in its maps, including some really well-integrated gimmicks.
More well-balanced combat.
Grounded political storyline that gets pretty gripping as the game progresses.
Branching story routes, post-game unlockable characters, post-game optional battles, it being very easy to skip previously viewed cutscenes, etc. make it a very replay-friendly experience.
I love Fire Emblem, but this scratches a different itch for me. Battles take longer, but you actually have to strategize and consider how you're going to tackle level objectives. Units aren't just barfed out on an open field.
@Ralizah The first two lines kind of sold me honestly
There's a sick and disturbed part of me that's actually more excited about Diofield. I played the demo, and I came away worried about it. Namely, it seems like it just throws difficulty walls at you that you have to keep re-playing levels to grind to level up to be able to reasonably take a level. Yet I somehow keep thinking about the game. Not buying until it's like $35, or on GP....but darnit if that game isn't interesting somehow.
But I still have like 97% of SH2 left.....
@SplooshDmg The demo was required for that? .
@SplooshDmg I read Liam's hands on and can't remember what he said about combat but it sounded bad. I can't believe they released a demo for this. It's balan wonderworld all over again. Tough kudos to them for just putting the demo out and owning it though. I'm guessing this is the end of star ocean. We hardly knew ye.
@NEStalgia listen I don’t have time to respond so instead have some TMS music https://youtu.be/JAH5B8TFuV8
@mousieone This just needs a pep talk.... YOU CAN DO IT! YOU CAN FIND TIME TO RESPOND! JUST GIVE IT YOUR ALL AND DO YOUR BEST!
No? Works for Tsubasa....
But really, TMS music is the solution to every problem!
@NEStalgia when dealing with NES, TMS music is always the answer lol gotcha
@Ralizah Okay so I watched the comparison and Nier on Switch plays a lot better than the PS4 version. It’s a locked 30 but PS4 is uneven at best. The resolution might end up looking better than base PS4. There are some pair backs and less shadows etc nothing that someone is going yo take any issue with.
I have no idea what my friend was complaining about now after watching the side by sides.
@mousieone Is the framerate locked? The previews I looked at said it dipped in some busy areas, like the PS4 version did. Although I could see it being more stable in general than that version of the game. The company that is porting this says it's targeting 720p/1080p, but I'm still... extremely skeptical about that. They said the same thing about The Outer Worlds, and that ended up being the usual 540p/720p split. tbh I'm expecting the same with NieR.
And looking at the footage, there's definitely some big cutbacks to texture resolution, shadow quality, foliage, lighting, etc.
But, y'know, it's still a very playable and moderately attractive version of NieR Automata on the Switch. A game people swore to me would be unworkable on the platform for the longest time. It continually impresses me how much juice developers manage to squeeze out of this particular lemon.
If it does end up being more stable on Switch, which would be hilarious, it wouldn't even be the first time that a Switch conversion upstaged the original PS4 release. 13 Sentinels: Aegis Rim on Switch is apparently lacking in the framerate stutters that cropped up in the original version of that game as well.
@Ralizah looks more stable to me https://youtu.be/JhCmiuoPWIE
Yeah Virtous is 50/50 but they did patch The Outer Worlds. I don’t know what it looks like after patch.
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