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Why are there so few 'characters' in the Western video game industry compared to the Japanese one?

Rhazer Fusion

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Give me a japanese dev that can make the witcher series, the elder scroll series, fallout series, Call of duty series, Battlefield series.

We overate Japanese too much honestly. Most of their games are being screamed too loud by minorities. The only Japanese devs i will respect are those who made Nintendo games, Metal gear series.

Majority of western like western games.

The only advantage Japanese had was early consoles. People grow up with them. But once the xbox and pc gaming started, it gave us alot of western talents. And by now, Japanese market is slowly losing their market. Sega is doing meh. Konomi went out. square is milking their final fantasy series, to a point of making Avengers a garbage game. Capcom doing capcom things, like nintendo.
Imo, Japanese developers are the kings of gameplay, polish, design and fun and I actually think they are VASTLY underrated. I feel they can make those games you listed and even improve the gameplay mechanics. Games like Tekken, Street Fighter, Shenmue, Dark Souls, Sonic, Final Fantasy 7, Virtua Fighter, Dragonquest, Luigi’s Mansion, Astral Chain, Neir, DMC, Yakuza Resident Evil, Silent Hill, Mario, Zelda, Catherine, Bayonetta, Metal Gear to name a few redefined the industry and some even inspired many developers.

The majority of Western gamers do like Western games, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are better and I think it’s also because more gamers are exposed to them more often. Everyone is playing Fortnite, but does that mean it’s better than Ratchet and Clank or Resident Evil: Village? It’s like music. Is all the most popular music the best quality now?
 
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Airola

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Here's a blast from the past:
LUC BERNARD


 

Spidey Fan

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Imo, Japanese developers are the kings of gameplay, polish, design and fun and I actually think they are VASTLY underrated. I feel they can make those games you listed and even improve the gameplay mechanics. Games like Tekken, Street Fighter, Shenmue, Sonic, Final Fantasy 7, Virtua Fighter, Dragonquest, Luigi’s Mansion, Astral Chain, Neir, DMC, Yakuza Resident Evil, Silent Hill, Mario, Zelda, Catherine, Bayonetta, Metal Gear to name a few redefined the industry and some even inspired many developers.

The majority of Western gamers do like Western games, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are better and I think it’s also because more gamers are exposed to them more often. Everyone is playing Fortnite, but does that mean it’s better than Ratchet and Clank or Resident Evil: Village? It’s like music. Is all the most popular music the best quality now?
Dude, I dont want to say this, but Japanese humor never works with western games. 2 vast difference cultures.

They excel in their games, but outside of that nope.

Most of their rpg games have cringy humor, that is unbearable.
 
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Havoc2049

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Jason Jones, Joe Staten and the crew at Bungie for the Marathon trilogy, Myth trilogy, Halo and Destiny.
 
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Rhazer Fusion

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Dude, I dont want to say this, but Japanese humor never works with western games. 2 vast difference cultures.

They excel in their games, but outside of that nope.

Most of their rpg games have cringy humor, that is unbearable.
Oh? Were there Western games with Japanese-style humor? I didn’t know that. I feel cringy humor is opinionated, but I do see what you are saying. I feel JRPGS normally have better, more in-depth, responsive combat which for me goes a long. Then again, it’s all preferences and as you said cultural differences so different things appeal to different people. Admittedly, I do enjoy both. I enjoyed Witcher 3 as well as Tales of Beseria.
 
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Spidey Fan

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Oh? Were there Western games with Japanese-style humor? I didn’t know that. I feel cringy humor is opinionated, but I do see what you are saying. I feel JRPGS normally have better, more in-depth, responsive combat which for me goes a long. Then again, it’s all preferences and as you said cultural differences so different things appeal to different people. Admittedly, I do enjoy both. I enjoyed Witcher 3 as well as Tales of Beseria.
They are great at rpg. To the point, they are the king of it. Outside of that is where they fail of. Personally preference also plays huge part. Other than that, I agree with you.
 
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The last western developer that made a legendary game was Ken Levine. You're even mentioning Molyneux while "talking shit" about Miyamoto and Kojima. You just need to say phil fish is the best developer ever to be a certified lunatic.
wut

GTAV, Skyrim, Mass Effect, Halo, The Witcher ect ect. there are endless western legendary games. Japanese dev legendary games are few and far between these days and are buried under 100 western games
 

Corndog

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This comment shows what I'm talking about, you likely know nothing about Molyneux before Xbox and Fable. Likely Fable 3 too.
No I did. Played black and white. Also sid Meyer for civilization and railroad tycoon.
 
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Swoopsail

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I want better work conditions for all and games that don't overhype and release unfinished. That's all I want from any game studio. Whether it has famous individual developers that make the public video game stage is just not important to me.
 
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oagboghi2

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This is a console gamer problem. Consoles gamers overrate japanese dev names loudly so they circulate the same 5 or so names over and over for years. That's why even people who didn't buy his games know who Suda51 is or heard of him, and know what games to associate with him.

On computers everyone knows who Williams, Garriott, and Meier are. If it wasn't for Xbox console gamers wouldn't know who Molyneux is. Just like without iPods and iphones most wouldn't know of Steve Jobs.

Several of the Japan devs were influenced by American "characters" but console gamers dont know them because they keep stroking Kojima walking sims or putting Miyamoto on pedestals for games he doesn't even design.
This should be good.

Miyamoto is put unfairly on a pedestal now? Based on what?
 

MvCSpiderman

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This should be good.

Miyamoto is put unfairly on a pedestal now? Based on what?
He's frequently credited for games he's not involved in just because he used to in the past or because he's associated with Nintendo. Many people thought BOTW was his game earlier for a recent example. Fire Emblem is another.
 

MvCSpiderman

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I just feel bad for you at this point - you either have horrible taste or haven't played that many games in general.
He must be one of those people who think Indigo Prophecy makes sense. David Cage is a horrible writer. His best story was Omikron and even that's a convoluted piece of crap. Throws out the main plot 5 times to change it in one game.
 

oagboghi2

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He's frequently credited for games he's not involved in just because he used to in the past or because he's associated with Nintendo. Many people thought BOTW was his game earlier for a recent example. Fire Emblem is another.
Miyamoto isn’t credited for anything he isn’t involved in. Last I checked it’s Eiji Amouna who is currently “credited” with BOTW success.

The stuff Miyamoto is credited with he consults directly, and they tend to be very successful projects. Is your argument he should’t be held in high regard because people don’t stay up to date on the director of fire emblem? 😂
 

Shelookdlvl18

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Because the West doesn't place subpar developers on a pedestal, and loudly proclaim them to be great. Thus resulting in those subpar devs releasing sequel after sequel after sequel, etc...

And people wonder why traditional gaming in Japan is headed off a cliff.
 
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Honestly, different cultures. We value movie directors here more. While gaming is a huge industry there are 0 household game developers here in the states where if you asked grandma who is Gabe Newell she'll be confused. While in japan, game developers are kind of like movie directors here since their film industry isn't as big as ours.
 
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MvCSpiderman

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Miyamoto isn’t credited for anything he isn’t involved in.
You aren't stupid, it was obvious what I meant when I said he was credited just based on the BOTW example. I wasn't talking about 'literal' credits and you know it.

In fact your Fire Emblem comment shows you're being disingenuous.
 

CatLady

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Japan has the likes of Hideo Kojima, Suda51, Hideki Kamiya, Tomonobu Itagaki and if you go further back, Kenji Eno (rip), or if not characters per say people who are insanely dedicated to their craft like Masahiro Sakurai. The western market seems to mostly have your stereotypical computer nerds being the big directors with very few exceptions (at least not anyone I can come up with). Is the reason for this because our industry has a very nerdy staple in the west wheras in Japan it's mainstream, certainly not anymore nerdy than the movie industry, and we know there are a lot of characters among directors there in Hollywood.

Outside of Kojmbo, I don't even know who any of those dudes are and don't care since I have absolutely NO interest in any weeb games or their developers.

Western developers are the only ones I know of and care about since they make the only games I'm actually interested in. Bryan Fargo, Ken Levine, Todd Howard, Chris Avellone, John Sawyer, Rod Ferguson; those devs and many more are the ones that matter to me.
 
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You have obsessive weirdos referring to Cory Barlog on a first name basis as if they personally know him.

He is a better writer than 98% of this embarrassing industry.
His embarrassing, action climax and awkward sex scenes in Fahrenheit invalidate his work.

And your dumb ass was the only one to bring up Fortnite earlier in this topic as some kind of pre-emptive counterpoint. It's not 2017 anymore! You're the only one talking about it here.
 
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Airbus Jr

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This is a console gamer problem. Consoles gamers overrate japanese dev names loudly so they circulate the same 5 or so names over and over for years. That's why even people who didn't buy his games know who Suda51 is or heard of him, and know what games to associate with him.

On computers everyone knows who Williams, Garriott, and Meier are. If it wasn't for Xbox console gamers wouldn't know who Molyneux is. Just like without iPods and iphones most wouldn't know of Steve Jobs.

Several of the Japan devs were influenced by American "characters" but console gamers dont know them because they keep stroking Kojima walking sims or putting Miyamoto on pedestals for games he doesn't even design.
Japan

Kojima ( Metal Gear Solid/ Death Stranding)

Miyazaki ( Armored Core, Demon Souls, Dark Souls, Bloodborne, Elden Ring)

Itagaki ( Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive)

Iwatani ( Pacman)

Mikami ( Resident Evil , Evil Within, Dino Crisis)

Kamiya ( Devil May Cry, Bayonetta, Ghost n Goblin)

Nishiyama ( Street Fighter)

Yamauchi ( Gran Turismo )

Hironobu Sakagucji ( Final Fantasy Parasite Eve)

Toyama ( Silent Hill)

Oshima ( Sonic)

Tajiri ( Pokemon)

Nagoshi ( Yakuza)

Aonuma ( Zelda)

Okada ( Shin Megami Tensei)

Yotoyirama ( Soul Calibur)

Iwata ( Mario)

Irota ( Ace Combat)

Murayama ( Suikoden)

Nomura ( Kingdom Hearts)

Yatate ( Mobile Suit Gundam)

Harada ( Teken)

Hashino ( Persona)

Takahashi ( Xenoblade Chronicles)

Oosaki ( Octopath Traveler)

Taura ( Nier)

Wada ( Harvest Moon)

Fumito Ueda ( Ico, Shadow of Collosus, The Last Guardian)

Hasebe ( Legend of Dragoon)

Iichi ( Secret of Mana)

Motomora ( Ni No Kuni Wrath of White Witch, Revenant Kingdom)

Shigeru Miyamoto ( Mario, Donkey Kong)

Igarashi ( Castlevania, Bloodstained)

Kaga ( Fire Emblem)

And couple mores

West :

Cliff Blezinski ( Gears of War, Bulletfront) Molyneux and some others

So yeah they kinda wins out here
 
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HAL-01

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Could be down to differences in the culture. Traditionally the Japanese have had a profound belief in the archetype of the “strong figurehead”. You see it in media all the time. The patriarch of a family, the head of a corporation, the emperor of the country, are always presented as people that one must honor, respect and be subservient to.

In America and most of Europe that concept isn’t as strong, ceos and directors get switched around all the time. Corporations don’t treat their employees like they’re part of one big family with a patriarchal figure at the top.
 

Karonoth

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Western creators don't tend to spend their entire life at the same company like Japanese devs. Will Wright for example is a legend, but he got fucked by EA and decided to leave. If he was Japanese he would probably still be making games at Maxis.
 

MvCSpiderman

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Japan

Kojima ( Metal Gear Solid/ Death Stranding)

Miyazaki ( Armored Core, Demon Souls, Dark Souls, Bloodborne, Elden Ring)

Itagaki ( Ninja Gaiden, Dead or Alive)

Iwatani ( Pacman)

Mikami ( Resident Evil , Evil Within, Dino Crisis)

Kamiya ( Devil May Cry, Bayonetta, Ghost n Goblin)

Nishiyama ( Street Fighter)

Yamauchi ( Gran Turismo )

Hironobu Sakagucji ( Final Fantasy Parasite Eve)

Toyama ( Silent Hill)

Oshima ( Sonic)

Tajiri ( Pokemon)

Nagoshi ( Yakuza)

Aonuma ( Zelda)

Okada ( Shin Megami Tensei)

Yotoyirama ( Soul Calibur)

Iwata ( Mario)

Irota ( Ace Combat)

Murayama ( Suikoden)

Nomura ( Kingdom Hearts)

Yatate ( Mobile Suit Gundam)

Harada ( Teken)

Hashino ( Persona)

Takahashi ( Xenoblade Chronicles)

Oosaki ( Octopath Traveler)

Taura ( Nier)

Wada ( Harvest Moon)

Fumito Ueda ( Ico, Shadow of Collosus, The Last Guardian)

Hasebe ( Legend of Dragoon)

Iichi ( Secret of Mana)

Motomora ( Ni No Kuni Wrath of White Witch, Revenant Kingdom)

Shigeru Miyamoto ( Mario, Donkey Kong)

Igarashi ( Castlevania, Bloodstained)

Kaga ( Fire Emblem)

And couple mores

West :

Cliff Blezinski ( Gears of War, Bulletfront) Molyneux and some others

So yeah they kinda wins out here
Anyone could do the same thing you just did in the opposite direction. But if course you got for the least intelligent argument.

Best part is even console gamers dont know half those names.
 

Airbus Jr

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Anyone could do the same thing you just did in the opposite direction. But if course you got for the least intelligent argument.

Best part is even console gamers dont know half those names.
Lets just be honest here youre upset cos i just proved you wrong

And it trigered you my friend

"Best part is even console gamers dont know half those names"

This statement of yours does it represent console gamers, my fellow pc friend ?
 
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LazyParrot

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"Best part is even console gamers dont know half those names"

This statement of yours does it represent console gamers, my fellow pc friend ?
LOL I bet even most enthusiasts would have no idea who more than a handful of these people are. And even if they do know them, what makes them "personalities" as opposed to just... dudes working in game development?

Like, Kojima is just a weirdo, Itagaki always looks like he's doing a Matrix cosplay and Nagoshi looks like he just stepped out of one of his games. But what personal quirks are people like Motomura, Taura or Irota known for? Are they even "known" at all?

I bet most people have never even heard of them, even on a console-centric enthusiast board like NeoGAF. What makes them personalities but not Ron Gilbert, David Jaffe, Brian Fargo, Rob Pardo or Warren Spector?
 
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GymWolf

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I take jade raymond over that cringy chick on nintendo, nakamura or what the fuck her name is...
 

Airbus Jr

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LOL I bet even most enthusiasts would have no idea who more than a handful of these people are. And even if they do know them, what makes them "personalities" as opposed to just... dudes working in game development?

Like, Kojima is just a weirdo, Itagaki always looks like he's doing a Matrix cosplay and Nagoshi looks like he just stepped out of one of his games. But what personal quirks are people like Motomura, Taura or Irota known for? Are they even "known" at all?

I bet most people have never even heard of them, even on a console-centric enthusiast board like NeoGAF. What makes them personalities but not Ron Gilbert, David Jaffe, Brian Fargo, Rob Pardo or Warren Spector?
I couldnt care less anything about people notorierty level

If people know about games like Final Fantasy, Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, Souls game Castlevania etc thats more than enough recognition for them, basically thats all they need to know they made a well sucesfull career

I dont understand why are you guys are being so petty and nasty about them
 
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Shut0wen

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The last western developer that made a legendary game was Ken Levine. You're even mentioning Molyneux while "talking shit" about Miyamoto and Kojima. You just need to say phil fish is the best developer ever to be a certified lunatic.
No one said they were better but nothing makes those devs better then said devs, only japanese dev i can say who goes out of the box and makes different times of games is miyamoto, molyneux as well as the guy who made resident evil 4, kojima has been making the same games since mgs4, all third person shooters with his quirky humour, even death stranding had the same directoring style of mgs and the inly thing i can think where he went out of his comfort zone was pt demo but again it was a demo, wasnt brilliant but it was shit either
 

LazyParrot

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I couldnt care less anything about people notorierty level

If people know about games like Final Fantasy, Resident Evil, Metal Gear Solid, Silent Hill, Souls game Castlevania etc thats more than enough recognition for them, basically thats all they need to know they made a well sucesfull career

I dont understand why are you guys are being so petty and nasty about them
I don't think you understand what this thread is even about. This isn't about developers and their achievements, it's specifically about developers who are widely known not just for their games, but for their character, image or personality. The OP made that very clear in his post. Hell, it's in the damn headline.

I simply pointed out that most of the people on your list aren't known for their character. In fact, most of them aren't known at all, even on a board like this. That's not being petty or nasty, it's a simple statement of fact.
 

Airbus Jr

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I don't think you understand what this thread is even about. This isn't about developers and their achievements, it's specifically about developers who are widely known not just for their games, but for their character, image or personality. The OP made that very clear in his post. Hell, it's in the damn headline.

I simply pointed out that most of the people on your list aren't known for their character. In fact, most of them aren't known at all, even on a board like this. That's not being petty or nasty, it's a simple statement of fact.
Pretty sure many people here know about people like kojima, miyazaki, nomura, miyamoto

What are you on about hahaha...
 
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Airbus Jr

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So that's 4 out of your list of 30+ people. You're kinda making my point for me here.
Do i really need to mentioned everyone every developer i know and repeat that on every post ? Those are just examples

Jesus christ you guys are salty af arent you
 
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Represent.

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You have obsessive weirdos referring to Cory Barlog on a first name basis as if they personally know him.


His embarrassing, action climax and awkward sex scenes in Fahrenheit invalidate his work.

And your dumb ass was the only one to bring up Fortnite earlier in this topic as some kind of pre-emptive counterpoint. It's not 2017 anymore! You're the only one talking about it here.
Spoken like a typical, clueless as fuck gamer.

Yes, a sex scene invalidates a writers work because you think its awkward. Not even gonna argue with you. You probably think TLOU 2 has bad writing too.

Games typically have shit writing and he is one of the few trying to elevate the medium in that regard. Point blank.

Fortnite, L4D, Dark Souls, Bayonetta, Mario, pick your poison. They all have one thing in common. Gamers couldn't care less about the story in any of those games. The writing is either non existent or trash tier in all of them and no one cares because video games.
 
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LazyParrot

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Do i really need to mentioned everyone every developer i know and repeat that on every post ? Those are just examples

Jesus christ you guys are salty af arent you
You're either trolling, or your reading comprehension is on the level of a five-year old. In any case, I'm done with you.

Fortnite, L4D, Dark Souls, Bayonetta, Mario, pick your poison. They all have one thing in common. Gamers couldn't care less about the story in any of those games.
You can argue about the quality of or even the existence of From Software's stories all you want, but there's no doubt that people care about them. There are people on Youtube essentially making a living posting lore videos for those games. I mean, just look at this shit:

 

Tschumi

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Because Japanese pop music culture is based on idol bands with a wide range of personalities and styles designed to appeal to a wide range of people, and games often follow this template
 

elliot5

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There's plenty of western "personalities" or highly notorious folk whether you like them and their games or not.

Barlog, Howard, Pitchford, Schafer, Blizinsky, Molyneux, Fish, Blow, Carmack, Sweeney, Druckmann.. just to name a few.
 
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kuncol02

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Anyone could do the same thing you just did in the opposite direction. But if course you got for the least intelligent argument.

Best part is even console gamers dont know half those names.
Half? Average gamer know two, maybe three and that's counting Iwata who was known more as CEO of Nintendo not game developer.
 
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Snake00

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There are plenty known western developers, but there are drawbacks to becoming a public figure. You get death threats for destroying beloved franchises even if you are the one who created them in the first place.
It's much easier to just hide behind a company name.
 

vpance

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Western devs innovated a lot during the rise of the gaming industry, because they were free to do so. Now everything’s corporatized (and politicized) in the west so most choose to play it safe.
 

kuncol02

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Outside of Kojmbo, I don't even know who any of those dudes are and don't care since I have absolutely NO interest in any weeb games or their developers.

Western developers are the only ones I know of and care about since they make the only games I'm actually interested in. Bryan Fargo, Ken Levine, Todd Howard, Chris Avellone, John Sawyer, Rod Ferguson; those devs and many more are the ones that matter to me.
Chris Avellone not that long ago before his cancellation was used as part of marketing campaign of quite few games.

Pc player here, and literally WHO? 🤨
Roberta Williams - creator of Sierra and pioneer of adventure games
Richard Gariot - creator of Ultima and Ultima Online
Sid Meier - creator of small hiden gem of strategy games called Sid Meier's Civilizatio. Most games he ever worked on have his name in their title. I don't believe anyone could not know him he is basically Tom Clancy of video games.
 
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