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What causes Platinum to become so hit-and-miss with their games?

Kadve

Member
Lets go trough their (non handheld/mobile) releases:

MadWorld: An interesting and pretty good experiment that sold like crap

Bayonetta: Great (unless we count the PS3 version which Platinum had nothing to do with)

Vanquish: Pretty good. Another interesting experiment

Anarchy Reigns: Mediocre game that upper management had no faith in. Sold about as well as its predecessor.

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance: Another great one

The Wonderful 101: Good game but a disappointment in terms of sales. Another experimental title.

Bayonetta 2: Great but (initially) tied to a failure of a platform. And even with a Switch release its sales ended up far below its predecessor.

The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation: booth are decent but feels like Bargain bin titles

Star Fox Zero: Seriously bad. Though unknown if it had to do with Platinum or simply Nintendos meddling.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan: Another bad one.

Nier: Automata: Pretty darn great. .

"Scalebound": I think we all know what happened to that one

Astral Chain: Another great one.

Sol Cresta: good but it's a schmup so was never going to be a high seller. Also overpriced as hell.

Babylon's Fall: Really, really, bad

Not counting the Scalebound disaster, Sol Cresta and whatever happened to Granblue Fantasy: Relink. That's
3 really bad ones (Star Fox Zero, TMNT:MIM and Babylon's Fall).
3 mediocre ones (Anarchy Reigns, The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation).
3 good/great games that ended up disappointments in terms of sales (MadWorld, The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2)
and 4 great games (Bayonetta, Vanquish, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and Nier: Automata).
 
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StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
Browsing the game list the skew to bright twitchy action games which are hard ones to sell tons of copies. And the games they got some brand recognition like MG and Star Fox, MG isnt a Kojima game and SF was on Wii U and a rail shooter.

The biggest possibility for greatness might be Babylons Fall if it turned out good. It might had been a giant GAAS MP smash hit. But it failed because it stunk.

None of their games have giant budgets, but they arent small fry indie games for $15. They are caught in that B-tier kind of pecking order where they may make some good games, but they rely on a unique style and quirkiness to be a hit.

Not the kind if studio that can just come out and say... "hey guys we got a cool first person military shooter coming out". And the game sells millions of copies right off the bat.
 

Varteras

Gold Member
Too many simultaneous projects. Several bad or inconsistent directors. Mikami, Inaba, and Kamiya were the driving force behind the games that put them on the map. Now, they're either more hands off (Inaba is now CEO), gone (Mikami formed Tango which has its own struggles), or fallen from their peak (Kamiya). Their best game by far in the last 7 years was Nier Automata, and that was directed by the creator of the franchise who doesn't even work at Platinum. Before that was a string of about 6 games that no one cared for or even knew about. Followed by a pretty good game in Astral Chain, and now back to a string of games people couldn't care less for.

Browsing the game list the skew to bright twitchy action games which are hard ones to sell tons of copies. And the games they got some brand recognition like MG and Star Fox, MG isnt a Kojima game and SF was on Wii U and a rail shooter.

The biggest possibility for greatness might be Babylons Fall if it turned out good. It might had been a giant GAAS MP smash hit. But it failed because it stunk.

None of their games have giant budgets, but they arent small fry indie games for $15. They are caught in that B-tier kind of pecking order where they may make some good games, but they rely on a unique style and quirkiness to be a hit.

Not the kind if studio that can just come out and say... "hey guys we got a cool first person military shooter coming out". And the game sells millions of copies right off the bat.
Also what they said ☝️
 

Jennings

Member
Transformers Devastation
A great action game with authentic voices are inspired art style that came out after Bayonetta 2.
 
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I think they were never trying to make great games out of Korra and Transformers. Sometimes devs need to take on smaller projects to inject some needed money.

Like Treasure and that McDonalds game, I imagine.
 

Fbh

Gold Member
From the outside they give the impression of a studio that's desperate for money and will just say yes to any project that gets pitched to them. Which has forced them to take on more projects than they can handle and crap out some bad games that have really diminished their reputation.

Want to do a Star Fox with terrible forced WiiU gimmicks? Yes please!
Want to make a TMNT/Korra game on a low budget in a short amount of time? Fuck yes!
Want to make an online GaaS even though you have literally no experience with this and are mostly known for short single player games? Of course! where do we sign?.

I imagine another factor is that even their good games like Vanquish, Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta sold quite poorly. And then they also had big profile blunders like Scalebound.
So from the perspective of a potential publisher, in Platinum you have a studio that's mostly likely going to give you a good game that won't sell or a bad game that won't sell.
 

Bragr

Member
I read somewhere about how they have been almost bankrupt several times, running in crisis mode, likely a lot of people left and they have been running on very low budgets. Some occasional successes like Nier: Automata have been saving them, but I doubt they will be around for much longer. It's a fucking shame.
 

01011001

Gold Member
I will defend Star Fox Zero till the end... that game is good, it was a very faithful reboot of Star Fox, with elements of Star Fox 1, 2 and 64.

people simply couldn't get used to the controls, which I get in a way since they were very "special", but if you get the hang of the controls and the 2 camera perspectives it's a really fun game, and IMO arguably the best of the classic style Star Fox games.

BUT to answering the question... very simple. they have multiple teams, they have multiple directors and they make games of EXTREMELY varying budgets and development times.

the really good games they made, which for me are Bayonetta 1, Vanquish, Wonderful 101 and Astral Chain, feel like passion projects by the directors of each of these games. they feel like games noone wanted them to make but games THEY wanted to make and were lucky enough to find punlishers that financed them.

their lesser good games feel like projects they liked and/or had a competent enough team working on them.

their bad games feel like cash grabs literally only done because they needed the money and some publisher had a project for them they had no passion for or interest in but they just needed the money.
 
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Astral Dog

Member
Platinum Games puts their brand on everything, but because they work with so many partners, they burn themselves out with different designs and brands,they also take projects that might be too big for their skills at this time(like Scakebound)

Hideki Kamiya and his team are amazing game designers, but even he can't supervise everything, Babylon's Fall was a failed experiment and result of Square Enix shitty managment,neither Kamiya or the Nier team were involved in that project.

given proper resources, a design they are good at, and enough time they can release very well crafted action games, but not any publisher is gonna be willing to work with them
 
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Lets go trough their (non handheld/mobile) releases:

MadWorld: An interesting and pretty good experiment that sold like crap

Bayonetta: Great (unless we count the PS3 version which Platinum had nothing to do with)

Vanquish: Pretty good. Another interesting experiment

Anarchy Reigns: Mediocre game that upper management had no faith in. Sold about as well as its predecessor.

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance: Another great one

The Wonderful 101: Good game but a disappointment in terms of sales. Another experimental title.

Bayonetta 2: Great but (initially) tied to a failure of a platform. And even with a Switch release its sales ended up far below its predecessor.

The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation: booth are decent but feels like Bargain bin titles

Star Fox Zero: Seriously bad. Though unknown if it had to do with Platinum or simply Nintendos meddling.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan: Another bad one.

Nier: Automata: Pretty darn great. .

"Scalebound": I think we all know what happened to that one

Astral Chain: Another great one.

Sol Cresta: good but it's a schmup so was never going to be a high seller. Also overpriced as hell.

Babylon's Fall: Really, really, bad

Not counting the Scalebound disaster, Sol Cresta and whatever happened to Granblue Fantasy: Relink. That's
3 really bad ones (Star Fox Zero, TMNT:MIM and Babylon's Fall).
3 mediocre ones (Anarchy Reigns, The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation).
3 good/great games that ended up disappointments in terms of sales (MadWorld, The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2)
and 4 great games (Bayonetta, Vanquish, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and Nier: Automata).
As someone pointed out different directors on almost all of there titles also the new ceo of there company isnt really a good thing since he wants a majority of there games to be GAAS, 5 years time if platinum isnt working on another nier game then i can see whatever game comes after bayonetta 3 as there last, you know things are bad when they shit talked about MS for years until afew months ago your begging to talk to phil
 

mxbison

Member
After making Nier Automata and people not appreciating it, I'd be dead inside and go for some online garbage too.
 

Soapbox Killer

Grand Nagus
The expectations of the name Platinum Games got bigger than the studio could meet. There was a time when you saw PG and you knew you were going to get into some wild shit with crazy action and tight controls (like Treasure) And while that is still true for most of their output, they had an almost mythical status for a few years. "Give (insert franchise here) to Platinum" was often the talk simply based on the assumed pedigree of the studio.






Now.....Give Captain Falcon to Platinum!
 

ACESHIGH

Member
The problem is their "gun for hire" approach to game development and publishing. Their games are niche enough already. At most they should release as timed exclusives and then in all modern platforms.
Their games are great most of the time and deserve a bigger audience. But if you keep them hostage then you are to blame.
 
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Astral Dog

Member
Too many simultaneous projects. Several bad or inconsistent directors. Mikami, Inaba, and Kamiya were the driving force behind the games that put them on the map. Now, they're either more hands off (Inaba is now CEO), gone (Mikami formed Tango which has its own struggles), or fallen from their peak (Kamiya). Their best game by far in the last 7 years was Nier Automata, and that was directed by the creator of the franchise who doesn't even work at Platinum. Before that was a string of about 6 games that no one cared for or even knew about. Followed by a pretty good game in Astral Chain, and now back to a string of games people couldn't care less for.


Also what they said ☝️
you got it all wrong dude, nobody may have bought The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2,but they are very well crafted action games, the latter got critical acclaim and made GOTY lists, enough for Nintendo to fund another sequel AND a new IP(that actually performed well for a new Platinum ip and surpassed the companies expectations)

nobody would had given a shit about Nier Automata if Platinum wasn't behind the actual game design,no way Square Enix would ever have sold 5 million + if it was another 60 Metacritic Yokotaro trash story running on a garbage engine, the Square fanbase ate it up since they didn't know about Platinum Games.

they even have Nintendo, owners of many of the most prestigious videogame brands and the most popular game system right now at their feet giving them blank cheque simply because they value Platinum that much and want to keep them close

Most gamers may not see the value in Platinum Games yet, but man the reason they are still around is because they are an incredibly talented developer
 
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Jeeves

Member
Hi, I'm one of the 8 people who really liked Anarchy Reigns, suck it. It could've used some balance patches though.

That's all I wanted to say.
 

lh032

I cry about Xbox and hate PlayStation.
they are just lucky, i mean if you keep pumping out games, eventually 1-2 will be good
 

Varteras

Gold Member
you got it all wrong dude, nobody may have bought The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2,but they are very well crafted action games, the latter got critical acclaim and made GOTY lists, enough for Nintendo to fund another sequel AND a new IP(that actually performed well for a new Platinum ip and surpassed the companies expectations)

nobody would had given a shit about Nier Automata if Platinum wasn't behind the actual game design,no way Square Enix would ever have sold 5 million + if it was another 60 Metacritic Yokotaro trash story running on a garbage engine, the Square fanbase ate it up since they didn't know about Platinum Games.

they even have Nintendo, owners of many of the most prestigious videogame brands and the most popular game system right now at their feet giving them blank cheque simply because they value Platinum that much and want to keep them close

Most gamers may not see the value in Platinum Games yet, but man the reason they are still around is because they are an incredibly talented developer
Yeah, no. Platinum isn't that talented. A talented studio does not show that much inconsistency in the quality of their games. A talented studio does not create 6 flops in a row, then a couple quality games, followed by more flops. I never said that Yoko Taro was the reason Nier did so well. I pointed him out to show that after 6 flops in a row with Platinum's directors, the next time they put out a hit, their biggest in the last 7 years, it wasn't even one of their own directors in charge. We've seen not hide nor hair of Star Fox in the 6 years since Platinum got their hands on it.

Their games aren't big sellers. Their average quality is mediocre throughout their existence with their best days behind them (2009-2014). Platinum used to be something. They haven't been that for a while now.
 

Relique

Gold Member
Lets go trough their (non handheld/mobile) releases:

MadWorld: An interesting and pretty good experiment that sold like crap

Bayonetta: Great (unless we count the PS3 version which Platinum had nothing to do with)

Vanquish: Pretty good. Another interesting experiment

Anarchy Reigns: Mediocre game that upper management had no faith in. Sold about as well as its predecessor.

Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance: Another great one

The Wonderful 101: Good game but a disappointment in terms of sales. Another experimental title.

Bayonetta 2: Great but (initially) tied to a failure of a platform. And even with a Switch release its sales ended up far below its predecessor.

The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation: booth are decent but feels like Bargain bin titles

Star Fox Zero: Seriously bad. Though unknown if it had to do with Platinum or simply Nintendos meddling.

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutants in Manhattan: Another bad one.

Nier: Automata: Pretty darn great. .

"Scalebound": I think we all know what happened to that one

Astral Chain: Another great one.

Sol Cresta: good but it's a schmup so was never going to be a high seller. Also overpriced as hell.

Babylon's Fall: Really, really, bad

Not counting the Scalebound disaster, Sol Cresta and whatever happened to Granblue Fantasy: Relink. That's
3 really bad ones (Star Fox Zero, TMNT:MIM and Babylon's Fall).
3 mediocre ones (Anarchy Reigns, The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation).
3 good/great games that ended up disappointments in terms of sales (MadWorld, The Wonderful 101 and Bayonetta 2)
and 4 great games (Bayonetta, Vanquish, Metal Gear Rising: Revengeance and Nier: Automata).
Great summary. I forgot about a lot of their titles. I've had discussions with friends who swear by Platinum but as your post outlined there are more middling titles than great. I'd argue even most of the good to great games have something about them that diminishes Platinum somehow. Wonderful101 was extremely short. Nier: Automata gets a lot of deserved praise but it's greatness isn't really in the gameplay and is more attributed to Yoko Taro and the amazing soundtrack. With MGSR they inherited a lot of assets and worked under the direction of Kojima. Vanquish had good gameplay but wasn't for everyone due to how Japanese and campy it was.

I am still a fan of them and will always be interested in learning more about whatever they work on. But it's clear to me that they work better with outside direction or at least a clear idea of what the game is supposed to be.
 

bender

What time is it?
How is Vanquish listed as "pretty good"?

 

01011001

Gold Member
Yeah, no. Platinum isn't that talented. A talented studio does not show that much inconsistency in the quality of their games. A talented studio does not create 6 flops in a row, then a couple quality games, followed by more flops. I never said that Yoko Taro was the reason Nier did so well. I pointed him out to show that after 6 flops in a row with Platinum's directors, the next time they put out a hit, their biggest in the last 7 years, it wasn't even one of their own directors in charge. We've seen not hide nor hair of Star Fox in the 6 years since Platinum got their hands on it.

Their games aren't big sellers. Their average quality is mediocre throughout their existence with their best days behind them (2009-2014). Platinum used to be something. They haven't been that for a while now.

Astral Chain was great... so I don't know what you mean really. they still can deliver great games.

you can tell when a game by theirs is made by the main guys, and you can tell when they actually wanted to make something special.
their inconsistency stems from the fact that all of their best games make barely any money... that's the sad truth.

Bayonetta 1 didn't make enough for Sega to greenlight the already planned sequel...
Nintendo rebooted the project when they were deparate for content on their failing console.

Vanquish barely moved the needle either...

Wonderful 101 was a massive financial flop if I remember correctly. AND NINTENDO WAS AT FAULT HERE TOO, they didn't even really promote the game back at E3. it was not part of their press conference and only shown by sites like IGN in on stage gameplay demos

so contract work to keep a steady flow of money is why they are so inconsistent with their output, but even then, not all of their "money grab" games are bad either.

Transformers was great for example, while they clearly reused a lot of Bayonetta's fighting system, they also improved upon it. many still hold Transformers uo as one of the best fighting systems of a Hack n Slay out there.

Korra is supposedly also not completely terrible (never played it)

so even with throwaway titles like that their work usually isn't all that bad.
 
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peronmls

Member
The Legend of Korra and Transformers: Devastation: booth are decent but feels like Bargain bin titles
They ARE budget games. They released for $20. At least Korra did. Both are great and polished for its price range. They do lack length and mechanics but it doesn't matter because it's a $20 polished game.
 
Yeah, no. Platinum isn't that talented. A talented studio does not show that much inconsistency in the quality of their games. A talented studio does not create 6 flops in a row, then a couple quality games, followed by more flops. I never said that Yoko Taro was the reason Nier did so well. I pointed him out to show that after 6 flops in a row with Platinum's directors, the next time they put out a hit, their biggest in the last 7 years, it wasn't even one of their own directors in charge. We've seen not hide nor hair of Star Fox in the 6 years since Platinum got their hands on it.

Their games aren't big sellers. Their average quality is mediocre throughout their existence with their best days behind them (2009-2014). Platinum used to be something. They haven't been that for a while now.
 
Platinum really should have looked at Fromsoft and Team Ninja's model: focus on what works, steadily iterate, build up goodwill over the years. Instead they ran themselves into the ground with a schizophrenic strategy
 

Varteras

Gold Member
Astral Chain was great... so I don't know what you mean really. they still can deliver great games.

you can tell when a game by theirs is made by the main guys, and you can tell when they actually wanted to make something special.

their inconsistency stems from the fact that all of their best games make barely any money... that's the sad truth.

Bayonetta 1 didn't make enough for Sega to greenlight the already planned sequel... Nintendo rebooted the project when they were separate for content on their failing console.

Vanquish barely moved the needle either...

Wonderful 101 was a massive financial flop if I remember correctly. AND NINTENDO WAS AT FAULT HERE TOO, they didn't even really promote the game back at E3. it was not part of their press conference and only shown by sites like IGN in on stage gameplay demos

so contract work to keep a steady flow of money is why they are so inconsistent with their output, but even then, not all of their "money grab" games are bad either.

Transformers was great for example, while they clearly reused a lot of Bayonetta's fighting system, they also improved upon it. many still hold Transformers uo as one of the best fighting systems of a Hack n Slay out there.

Korra is supposedly also not completely terrible (never played it)

so even with throwaway titles like that their work usually isn't all that bad.
Being able to deliver great games now and then doesn't excuse the lack of quality in many of their other games. Out of their last 11 titles, only two were really anything to write about and the best out of those wasn't even with a Platinum director. They fucked up Scalebound so bad that two and a half years after its high profile reveal it was canceled. They were dropped from the Granblue Fantasy Relink project after years of development and Cygames had to pick up the slack. A studio's reputation doesn't get a pass because, "Oh you did some work on other IP that wasn't yours". You either make great games a lot or you don't. They're not some shining star developer. They're an overrated, mediocre studio. They should look into trimming their fat and focus on quality over quantity.
 

MetalRain

Member
They try new stuff, but not all games get the traction and sales.

Even when I don't really like the style of games they have done, but I don't wish them to be more like Ubisoft 😃
 
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Porcile

Member
Don't really get the intense dislike of Star Fox Zero. It's a Star Fox game, with unfortunately clunky controls and some boring sections. Definitely doesn't warrant the hate it gets.
 

Vandole

Member
Hi, I'm one of the 8 people who really liked Anarchy Reigns, suck it. It could've used some balance patches though.

That's all I wanted to say.
I'm also one of the eight. The online multiplayer could have been the greatest online mode of the generation if there were more than eight of us playing it.
 
If anyone here watches sports of any kind, think of that one athlete. The one who plays like a champion some days and can be on fire, and the very next day their performance is worse than a budding rookie. Then the day after they're back to near champion level, and the day after that they're back to bronze level. Platinum Games is that inconsistent athlete.
 

StreetsofBeige

Gold Member
If anyone here watches sports of any kind, think of that one athlete. The one who plays like a champion some days and can be on fire, and the very next day their performance is worse than a budding rookie. Then the day after they're back to near champion level, and the day after that they're back to bronze level. Platinum Games is that inconsistent athlete.
For any NHL fans, sounds exactly like Patrik Laine.
 
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