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Japanese market share of western game market falls to 20%

Japanese market share of the Western game market has been reduced to 20 percent according to an analysis of the Japanese gaming industry by the CESA. The decline is significant as Japanese game development used to maintain a dominant position in the industry especially for home and portable console game development.

The speed of the decline is also noteworthy as the decline has become impossible to ignore during this generation of home consoles which are roughly 2 to 3 years old.

In October of last year, Square Enix president Yoichi Wada declared that Japan had "lost its position" as the leader in the video game industry. These claims are being backed by evidence which shows the market share for Western-developed titles in their own territories doubled between 2004 and 2007 while Japanese game market share has declined.

Although market share has declined, data summarized by Kotaku revealed the news is not all negative as revenue generated from Japanese game exports overall have increased by 43 percent year on year in 2006 and by 54.3 percent in 2007. The success is attributed primarily to the success of the Nintendo DS and Wii hardware.

According to a senior analyst at Nomura Finance, there are several causes for the decline in Japanese game development. He suggests RPG games which Japanese developers tend to focus are not as popular in the west. He also suggests the right to develop games in potentially lucrative areas such as sports or popular movie franchises is tightly controlled. 

Nomura also states since the successful launch of the Microsoft Xbox the quantity and size of the competition in the field of game development has increased significantly making it more difficult for Japanese game developers to maintain significant market share.



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By inighthawki on 1/26/2009 5:19:43 PM , Rating: 3
quote:
while the Japanese continued to shovel out sequels from their 80's heydays (Metal Gear Solid, Mario 64, Zelda 64, Mario Kart 64, Star Fox 64, FZero 64, etc.)


You just listed a set of games most people would defend as some of the best games of the time. Your original point proves only that you have a very subjective opinion about the quality of games, not that they started making bad ones.


By bkslopper on 1/27/2009 11:24:45 AM , Rating: 2
Zelda 3 > Zelda 64.
Super Mario Kart > Mario Kart 64.
Super Mario World > Mario 64.
Fzero > Fzero 64.

The sequels had worse framerates, blurry visuals and loose controls. They ported from 2D to 3d and rehashed their old characters instead of finding new ones. This is THE prime reason I switched from Nintendo to Sony back in the day.

Similar thing happened with the PS2. The lack of online support pushed me towards the Xbox and PC. The success of the PS2 singlehandedly held back online gaming community for a whole console generation. I spent most my time on the other platforms that were (surprise, surprise) strongly supported by Western devs.


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