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Staff Roundtable: Operation Rainfall

Could Operation Rainfall Revive the west's dormant love for the JRPG?

Today Xenoblade Chronicles is available for purchase in the US thanks, in part, to Operation Rainfall.  To mark the occasion, a few members of the PixlBit staff began a dialogue concerning the future of the movement and if it’s at all possible that Operation Rainfall could revive the west’s love for the Japanese RPG.

Jesse Miller: Operation Rainfall sure has come a long way, hasn’t it? It seems like forever ago the movement began its outreach program to Nintendo of America; hoping to demonstrate that there was a market for Japanese RPGs in North America. With Xenoblade Chronicles amazingly being released today in the US (yesterday in Canada) and with The Last Story making its way to our shores in June it’s hard to say they weren’t a resounding success. 

While the movement still has work to do – Pandora’s Tower is the last game on their hit list – there is a question that this whole thing brings to my mind. Could Operation Rainfall help to rekindle the west’s love for the JRPG? More importantly, could it revive what has become a niche genre here and put it into the forefront of the gaming community’s collective consciousness as it was in generations past?

Vic Roman: I definitely hope it can revive some JRPG love. I actually think a lot of JRPGs are cheesy and don't translate to English without a lot hitches. Recently I've been playing Tales of Graces f and it has a lot of flaws and a huge lack of innovation, but I'm still loving it. I'm hoping that Xenoblade, The Last Story, and Pandora's Tower can help push forward a genre that seems to be stuck living in yesterday. That's the only way it will become a mainstream genre in the west again.

Angelo Grant: I think we have to look at why Operation Rainfall was a success first before we determine if it's the cure for the disease. I honestly think the reason it worked was it performed a function normally reserved for publishers, namely, they promoted the game. 

When was the last time a JRPG actually got a clever, aggressive marketing campaign? I honestly don't even know. People keep calling JRPG's niche' but when I was in high school, everybody I knew was playing Final Fantasy VII and loving it, and that was one seriously Japanese game. All I really think that needs to happen in order for a Japan developed RPG that is fundamentally unique, like Xenoblade and The Last Story to enjoy success is for publishers to get them public attention. That's really all Operation Rainfall did. 

So the answer to the question for me is yes, Operation Rainfall can help revive the genre, provided publishers learn from their example.

Jon Lewis: I know personally, Operation Rainfall is just one of the movements that is resurrecting the JRPG. The localizations of the games in the Tales of series are a big deal to me as well. 

As far as what the games Xenoblade and The Last Story can do for the genre, I hope developers look at these titles and see that there is a way to break the mold, yet be completely true to the genre. I still have yet to see how it pans out in both games, but I've heard good things across the board, so its safe to say that their efforts were not in vain. 

As Angelo stated, I definitely think Operation Rainfall can help as long as publishers and developers learn from what they have done.

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Comments

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 03:56 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

"possible that Operation Rainfall could revive the west’s love for the Japanese RPG."

First of all more japanese rpgs are made than ever in japan, and more are localized than ever, and more get good sales than ever in the west

I mean if a game like neptunia can sell 200k+ copies in the west............thats rpg love

Operation rainfall HAD NOTHING to do with nintendo localizing those rpgs.........nintendo has localized more rpgs this gen than any time in there history, they love rpgs, they would of done them

 

" It seems like forever ago the movement began its outreach program to Nintendo of America; hoping to demonstrate that there was a market for Japanese RPGs in North America."

this pisses me off............because nintendo has made and localized more rpgs than bethesda, bioware, cd, obsidian put together.......so any notion theres no market for it from there perspective is just wrong

Nick DiMola Director

04/06/2012 at 04:04 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I appreciate the comment, but what RPGs has Nintendo localized this generation? I'm really thinking hard and I can't identify a single one.

Traditionally, Nintendo has never been an RPG company. I'm sure part of the reason they own controlling stake in Monolith is for this reason exactly.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:08 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

And I appreciate your appreciation.

glory of heracles ( first time for the series in the west),magical starsign ( first time for the series in the west), fire emblem 1 ( first time the game has hit america), golden sun 3, xenoblade, last story, pandoras tower, super paper mario, mario and luigi 2, mario and luigi 3, dragon quest IV (published), dragon quest V ( published), dragon quest VI( published and localized), draogn quest joker 2( published and localized), dragon quest IX ( published and localized), no less than 10 pokemon games

 

Not to mention the games they developed but werent localized like the second fire emblem remake and a few other things

 

Nick DiMola Director

04/06/2012 at 04:18 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Well first, we definitely cannot count the Operation Rainfall games in your argument. Their future in America pre-Rainfall was questionable at best, especially with Monado coming off the release lists and not even getting a mention at E3.

Also, we were never talking handheld. Obviously, these games are all console so the discussion was limited specifically to that. Nintendo began handheld RPG publication on the GBA, and in many cases (like Pokemon) even earlier than that. To say that Nintendo "loves RPGs" is disingenuous at best. They ride a few series generation after generation.

Whatever deal they struck with Square Enix for Dragon Quest is separate and apart. They merely published VI and IX to take the risk off of Square after the failure of IV and V. Nintendo clearly was playing ball with Square Enix to secure that series for their systems (and clearly that worked, see DQ X).

I find it hard to believe that there was any intention on NoA's part to publish these games and had NoE not footed the localization bill, they wouldn't have come. If Nintendo was so pro-RPG, why is XSEED publishing The Last Story? Nintendo clearly sees these games as a risk and has adequately protected themselves from failure. Fan response to Rainfall made these games come to America, not Nintendo (of America)'s own impetus.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:27 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Why cant we count them? they localized them didnt they?

" Their future in America pre-Rainfall was questionable at best, especially with Monado coming off the release lists and not even getting a mention at E3."

Coming off release lists is common when you change names. Thats what happened, and fyi, not all announcements happen at e3

"Also, we were never talking handheld. Obviously, these games are all console so the discussion was limited specifically to that."

nobody said that, you have to look at nintendos entire body of work

"Nintendo began handheld RPG publication on the GBA, and in many cases (like Pokemon) even earlier than that. To say that Nintendo "loves RPGs" is disingenuous at best. They ride a few series generation after generation."

But never have they localized so many

It was them that gave the olive branch to square over dragon quest

"Whatever deal they struck with Square Enix for Dragon Quest is separate and apart. They merely published VI and IX to take the risk off of Square after the failure of IV and V. Nintendo clearly was playing ball with Square Enix to secure that series for their systems (and clearly that worked, see DQ X)."

Your so wrong, they localized every one after IV and V.........IV and V sold so successfully square wanted a marketing partner..........

"I find it hard to believe that there was any intention on NoA's part to publish these games and had NoE not footed the localization bill, they wouldn't have come."

First of all in no other gen woyuld NOE even localized them, and I dont find it hard to believe, like Ive proven they are doing non stop rpgs........hell this year they are localizing no less than 5 rpgs.........

"If Nintendo was so pro-RPG, why is XSEED publishing The Last Story?"

Quote from Xseed

"We approached nintendo about last story, because we want to build a relationship with nintendo so perphaps they can do even more and more rpgs and be safe in knowing they wont have to deal with localizing them all" Tom, xseed

"Nintendo clearly sees these games as a risk and has adequately protected themselves from failure."

as I said that isnt the case

 

"Fan response to Rainfall made these games come to America, not Nintendo (of America)'s own impetus."

fan input is worth nothing

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 04:29 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

On the fan input thing - I think the guys at BioWare would have a word with you on that one.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:32 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

bioware has become so hated, they are just doing anything to win some of there fans back.........

I can understand that.........its a different situation.

 

As soon as mass effect 3 launched there were over a thousand negative user reviews.

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 04:40 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I wouldn't say the company is hated - a vast majority of the hate I saw was pointed at EA. And the game still sold like gangbusters and will be the best selling RPG this year.  

I just wouldn't discount fan input.  Most people hadn't even heard of Xenoblade until Operation Rainfall started.  To say they had absolutely nothing to do with it getting over here is not giving the movement enough credit.  

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:43 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

The best selling rpg of the year for now.......... there is one coming out later in the year that worldwide is going to anhiliate it sales wise....... 

" Most people hadn't even heard of Xenoblade until Operation Rainfall started. "

Do you really believe that? Most rpg buffs new about it from the moment of its japanese announcement

 

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 04:46 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

You just said it yourself "RPG buffs."  And I would correct that to JRPG buffs since the RPG sphere is also inclusive of those that don't play JRPGs.  

I'm curious - what RPG do you think is going to outsell ME3 this year?  I'm personally picking up more than a few myself, but I know that Xenoblade, The Last Story, and Wrath of the White Witch aren't going to outsell the monolith that is ME3 - especially since those are platform exclusive and ME is multiplatform.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:50 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I dont have to categorize like that, rpg buffs were interested, those that like rpgs from all regions as I do.........

Dragon quest X is going to run laps around it sales wise, but that is really besides the point

There are more important things than selling the most, and this year considering this is the end of a gen and the beginning of a new one, has been one of the best rpg localization and development years in history in terms of quality and quantity

 

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 04:56 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I wouldn't be comfortable saying that.  The radical change in formular for DQX, plus the fact that it's a single platform game (Wii/Wii U) don't really translate to sure thing to beat out ME3.

I'm not saying it isn't possible, but I have a feeling that game isn't going to come out till 2013 anyways which would put it out of the discussion.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 05:14 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

i would feel extremely comfitable in saying that............dq IX changed the formula too and it sold the most units of any DQ ever.......  hell worldwide DQ IX beat basically all the mass effects combined sales.......on a single platform.

Its going to be out this year. trust me

 

 

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 04:50 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

And I wouldn't feel proud if the RPG you name is Pokemon Black/White 2.  That's more of a toy franchise than a representation of the JRPG, and a single franchise that sells well does not make the rest of the genre any less niche.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:52 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Funny I didnt even think about that one, but thats also a possibility...................

I know about 15 million rpg gamers who would really be affended...........

 

  "a single franchise that sells well does not make the rest of the genre any less niche."

so this year devil survivor 2, tales of graces F, 13-2, all outsold kingdom of A in the US and worldwide, so do you want to say just because mass effect 3 sells well doesnt mean western rpgs arent niche?

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 05:28 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Before stating that specific titles sold more than others, please provide a source.  

Reckoning sold 330,000 copies in its first month of sales (according to numerous sources).  Not bad for an original IP.

Devil Survivor 2 sold aproximately .07 million copies in the US and .19 worldwide (according to the only source I could find - VGchartz, which I'm not a fan of).  That's far less than Reckoning's 330,000.

I couldn't find anything on the US sales of Tales of Graces f except that it's original release did very well - in Japan.

As for Final Fantasy 13-2, a series that has been around for 25 years is expected to do better than one that has been around for 0 years.  Still, the title did 350,000 in its first month - only marginally better than Amalur.  Of course the Japanese sales are respectable (though low for the series average - doing less than FFXIII). 

Now if we pick a more proven western commodity, which would be fair, like Skyrim the figures are quite different.

Skyrim sold over 3.4 million copies in its first two days.  That's a big difference.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 05:33 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

"Reckoning sold 330,000 copies in its first month of sales (according to numerous sources).  Not bad for an original IP."

Not from what Ive read.

"Devil Survivor 2 sold aproximately .07 million copies in the US and .19 worldwide (according to the only source I could find - VGchartz, which I'm not a fan of).  That's far less than Reckoning's 330,000."

No offense, but I also dont like vgchartz, so I am not going to talk vg chart numbers

"Still, the title did 350,000 in its first month - only marginally better than Amalur.  Of course the Japanese sales are respectable (though low for the series average - doing less than FFXIII). "

side games never sell higher than main line titles

"Skyrim sold over 3.4 million copies in its first two days.  That's a big difference."

I didnt bring up skyrim.........but all I would have to do is bring up pokemon black white selling 15 million on a single system and those numbers become far less impressive..........

 

But in terms of my dq X point do you understand?

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 05:35 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

my point being worldwide, japanese rpgs do pretty good for themselves, better than they have in most gens..........

for instance dq has achieved its highest worldwide saleas this gen, FF overall, disgaea, legend of heroes, fire emblem, pokemon, tales, and many others...............

Its been an amazing time...........

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 06:50 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I'm not going to disagree that there haven't been quality titles, but the market isn't stocked like it was with the PS2 and PSOne.  And though I'm not going to disagree with your thoughts on VGchartz - it's the only source I've found that can substantiate any claims to even remotely valid numbers concerning some of the titles you cited.  If you have numbers to back your claims, then awesome.  

And that Amulur number is accurate.  It's been reported by many sources, not VGchartz.  And your Pokemon white sales are great - but remember that had almost a year's head start.  3.4 million in 2 days is impressive no matter how you slice it.  

And I can agree with Dragon Quest X - though I think the MMO portion may turn many traditional gamers off.  Time will tell, but I'll give it a try.  I love the DQ series.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 06:58 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

You know the more we debate the more I like you? your showing me some fire here.

" the market isn't stocked like it was with the PS2 and PSOne"

When you consider japanese rpgs are on the 360, ps3, ds,psp,ios,wii its more stocked than at any time in those days......

My internet is crapping out so me searching for links is a no no ( I am just keeping this page up_)

No offense but until EA says it, any number is just a prediction

" And your Pokemon white sales are great - but remember that had almost a year's head start.  3.4 million in 2 days is impressive no matter how you slice it.  " Also remember it was on 1 system. No doubt 3.4 is impressive

Do not under estimate the power of draogn quest in japan, seriously, its a force......when it comes out in japan they literally call a national holiday

I agree its a great year for rpgs considering this is the end of the gen and beginning of a new

On the western developed side
mass effect 3
kindgom of A
diablo 3
risen 2

are great

On the japanese localization side
paper mario
fire emblem
last story
xenoblade
pandoras tower
pokemon conquest
pokemon black white
grand knight history
rexx
legend of heroes second chapter
legisticia
mugen souls
MK 2
agarest 2
kingdom hearts
growlanser
gungir
class of heroes 2
dragon dogma
ninokuni
tales of graces F
tales of the abyss 3ds
ff 13-2
atelier arland 3

and more I am probably forgetting make it a great year for the end of the gen

And in terms of japanese developed titles for this year

suikoden psp
beyond the L
shining blade
was an amazing start ( some of the titles were already listed)

i dont know about anyone else but its an amazing year

 

so when people say jrpgs are dead, dying, or anything else..........I find it hilarous

Jesse Miller Features Editor

04/06/2012 at 07:12 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Discussion is good and we could certainly go on about this.  Tell you what - tune back in here on Monday afternoonish...I'll have something up that will provide a better platform.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 07:19 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

You know what some of my issues are? I take what people say too seriously and I have to realize they are just giving there opinion, not there factual doctorate, And I do get angry, I guess that could be surmised.

I just think people have these rose colored glasses on how things used to be and look distainfully on today, when back then, it was a pretty misserable situation in actuality.......

Nick DiMola Director

04/09/2012 at 11:08 AM Reply | Permalink | Report

I'm not interested in debating everything in your reply, but I did want to comment on Dragon Quest V and its sales. See here for Square Enix's financial briefing on the title. It sold 1,176,000 copies in Japan, which contributed to a worldwide total of 1,350,000.

Some simple math reveals that the game didn't even pass 200k sales in regions outside of Japan. So back to my original point, Nintendo published VI and IX because Square Enix had no intention. Only recently did Dragon Quest V get a reprint and I only know because I hunted for months for a first print copy of the game before the reprint happened. After thorough investigation, I happened upon the information I shared in my previous comment.

Furthermore, as per the brief summary at the start of this article, we're talking solely about the perception of these games in America. Some perception is based in truth, some in fallacy. The truth of the matter is that most gamers in America don't care about JRPGs and have moved on to  WRPGs and other genres all together.

Spin it any way you like, but the genre is nowhere near the same popularity it once was. Sales are not a good indication of this either as game sales these days are much higher than they were in the heyday of the genre - there are are lots more people playing games these days in general.

During the PS1/PS2 era tons of JRPGs hit the market that would never come, or perhaps even be made, today. I know this because I own tons of them. I look at my collection for this generation and I just don't see the same thing on home consoles. Handhelds have always had a healthy offering of the genre, but that's where they primarily live these days.

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 08:35 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

You are interested

"Some simple math reveals that the game didn't even pass 200k sales in regions outside of Japan. So back to my original point, Nintendo published VI and IX because Square Enix had no intention."

That makes NO SENSE. anything above 100k is a triumph for a game like that............

 

"Only recently did Dragon Quest V get a reprint and I only know because I hunted for months for a first print copy of the game before the reprint happened. After thorough investigation, I happened upon the information I shared in my previous comment."

They didnt reprint it before because they wanted IX to sell way more. That was the reason

 

"Furthermore, as per the brief summary at the start of this article, we're talking solely about the perception of these games in America."

which is fine

"Some perception is based in truth, some in fallacy. The truth of the matter is that most gamers in America don't care about JRPGs and have moved on to  WRPGs and other genres all together."

Thats truth? thats fallacy, numbers dont back you up dude, considering most jrpg series have seen there highest numbers, and this year we are seeing perphaps the best localization year ever.

"Spin it any way you like, but the genre is nowhere near the same popularity it once was. Sales are not a good indication of this either as game sales these days are much higher than they were in the heyday of the genre"

SALES ARE THE ONLY INDICATION

"During the PS1/PS2 era tons of JRPGs hit the market that would never come, or perhaps even be made, today. I know this because I own tons of them."

I am starting to get really pissed at you because your just lying. More games this gen have been localized than those gens, its just fact. And more games from series that were not localized in the past. Thats fact too

"I look at my collection for this generation and I just don't see the same thing on home consoles. Handhelds have always had a healthy offering of the genre, but that's where they primarily live these days."

BECAUSE CONSOLES DIDNT SELL AS MUCH IN JAPAN THIS GEN

YOU NEED EVERYTHING SPELLED OUT FOR YOU

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 08:44 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

i am not sure if you are just a bitter console fanboy now. I dont want to believe that, but you just spewed some of the most ridiculous things my way I couldnt stand it.

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 09:06 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

one last thing, and I think I am done with this topic..........

 

A game can sell 100k copies like dragon quest V did and be more financially profitable than a game that sold over 1 million.

Why?

Costs

 

So when you say selling 150k+ copies is a sign that the game didnt do well, and square wouldntr have localized it anyway, guess what, they are part of the transaction. And after that, V did so well, square got right on the horn with nintendo about IX, VI, and joker 2

thats how it happened

 

Now I figure you guys wont be doing a piece like this again nore should you

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:04 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

To reiterate..........

In no other gen has nintendo developed and published as many rpgs as they did in this gen, and it had nothing to do with operation rainfall or anything else........they see how popular japanese rpgs are, and they wanted a piece of that action and boy did they get it.............over 25 rpgs to there name..............

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:13 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

More rpgs have been localized this gen than ever, and more have been made than ever........the fanbase has grown that large

 

even 15 year old games that never left japan before are now

Jon Lewis Staff Writer

04/06/2012 at 04:14 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

There have been a lot of RPGs on both Wii and DS but how many of them have been really good? There are quite a few, yes. I bet both you and I would agree that many games, like the Mario and Luigi games, Radiant Historia, The World Ends With You and Dragon Quest are among those. There are probably a lot that I am not familiar with, but its hard to deny that they dont sell nearly as much as they deserve to sell. JRPGs appeal to a niche audience and thats why they have a harder time coming over. The fact that we are getting more only means that that niche is expanding, or people are more willing to buy these games now. 

That said, I still believe that among the flood of FPS games and Western RPG's even, JRPG's have had a hard time finding their footing among those giants. Not saying that every FPS or Western RPG is good, but they will more likely appeal to the US audience than a JRPG, I believe. 

In the end of the day, I dont think anyone here is against JRPGs and I think that speaking generally is the best way to approach the situation. Speaking only to a niche audience is alienating a massive group of people. So when you look at the grand scheme of things, JRPG's have suffered over here. That said they have had a resurgence in terms of quantity and quality recently. Thats great, and I hope to see more of that.

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:21 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

"There have been a lot of RPGs on both Wii and DS but how many of them have been really good? There are quite a few, yes. I bet both you and I would agree that many games, like the Mario and Luigi games, Radiant Historia, The World Ends With You and Dragon Quest are among those."

Really good is just opinion just like its always been

suikoden II got slammed in reviews back in the day, now not so much

 

"There are probably a lot that I am not familiar with, but its hard to deny that they dont sell nearly as much as they deserve to sell. JRPGs appeal to a niche audience and thats why they have a harder time coming over."

More rpgs are getting localized than ever and more are selling more than they ever have disgaea being an example

"The fact that we are getting more only means that that niche is expanding, or people are more willing to buy these games now. "

You contradicted yourself, let me help you. The fanbase is growing

 

"but they will more likely appeal to the US audience than a JRPG, I believe. '

the highest selling rpgs on single systems are japanese rpgs...........

"In the end of the day, I dont think anyone here is against JRPGs and I think that speaking generally is the best way to approach the situation.'

I dont think you are either. I just think you need some proper rpg education

 

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 04:36 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I want to say something right now that might ease the tension.

There is one thing about this site and about these articles I love. And that is the staff is willing to speak.

In so many sites, so many sites say hateful things, and then never respond again, or talk to people, and maybe try to understand some things

 

In this regard this site is great  

Anonymous

04/06/2012 at 05:03 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Ug........I just realized this article had 2 other pages................so much wrong......................

 

 

 

Julian Titus Reviews Editor

04/07/2012 at 12:38 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

To chime in to Anonymous (you really should sign up so we have a name to go with the detailed comments), you seem to keep bringing up worldwide sales for these games. I'm sure that when you take in worldwide sales these games are still doing very well, and possibly better than ever. But I think it's safe to say that we here at PixlBit are talking about the sales climate for North America only, since pretty much the entire staff resides there.

And again, I just don't see a lot of JRPGs crossing over beyond the hardcore niche, which is not where the genre was, say, 15 years ago. I can only speak for how these games did for my store in the 8 years I worked retail, but JRPGs (or as we called them back then, RPGs) were hugely popular, with games like Lunar, Arc the Lad Collection, Final Fantasy (take your pick), and Kingdom Hearts selling far and above most every other game at the time. RPGs were constantly on the covers of gaming magazines, and the announcement of a new game in a popular series was always a cause for mass hysteria.

I don't see that as often anymore. Even the release of FF XIII was met with a kind of muted excitement, and that was before the reviews and fan backlash started to pour in. Dragon Quest IX indeed did amazingly well, especially if you compare it to the sales of VII and VIII, which were pretty disappointing. Can DQ X top that? It remains to be seen. I've heard many hardcore DQ fans raging against that game, criticizing everything from the graphics to the fact that it's an MMO. We'll see how it does. I really feel that the "Wii 3" from Operation Rainfall are going to sell as expected, that is, the hardest of the hardcore will buy them and love them, but they won't crack the top ten on the sales charts.

And I would love to be proven wrong about that, but that's how I feel.

Also, I appreciate that you realize that our comments and statements are our opinions and feelings. Feel free to disagree, but there's no reason to either get angry or take it personally. People may not agree with you all of the time, but that doesn't negate their opinions, nor do their opinions negate your own.

Anonymous

04/08/2012 at 02:38 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

1) I will make an account when I decide to stop being lazy

2) Worldwide sales are the only sales that in the long run matter.

3) In terms of US sales like I mentioned many series are doing better than ever

"I just don't see a lot of JRPGs crossing over beyond the hardcore niche, which is not where the genre was, say, 15 years ago."

Thats exactly where it was 15 years ago which is why most stuff never left japan. Far more than today

"I can only speak for how these games did for my store in the 8 years I worked retail, but JRPGs (or as we called them back then, RPGs) were hugely popular, with games like Lunar, Arc the Lad Collection, Final Fantasy (take your pick), and Kingdom Hearts selling far and above most every other game at the time. RPGs were constantly on the covers of gaming magazines, and the announcement of a new game in a popular series was always a cause for mass hysteria."

You should keep just calling them rpgs, youll sound smarter in the eyes of devs if you ever get the chance to do an interview........and I speak as someone in the industry working at a game company right now........when ff 13-2 launched in the US it sold the most, as did devil survivor 2, and tales of graces F ( it actually sold the most of any US tales in its first week). Rpgs are still on covers and announcements still cause mass hysteria.........

"I don't see that as often anymore. Even the release of FF XIII was met with a kind of muted excitement, and that was before the reviews and fan backlash started to pour in."

final fantasy 13 worldwide sold more than mass effect 1 and 2 combined.........not only that most reviews were in the 7-10 range averaging to an 84...........it wasnt fan backlash, it was minority backlash, the same kind of thing michael patcher talks about with mass effect 3's ending

"Dragon Quest IX indeed did amazingly well, especially if you compare it to the sales of VII and VIII, which were pretty disappointing. Can DQ X top that? It remains to be seen."

In japan, I think it can.........

'"I've heard many hardcore DQ fans raging against that game, criticizing everything from the graphics to the fact that it's an MMO."

Believe me, those arent fans

"We'll see how it does. I really feel that the "Wii 3" from Operation Rainfall are going to sell as expected, that is, the hardest of the hardcore will buy them and love them, but they won't crack the top ten on the sales charts."

Games dont have to break the top 10, just make profit

Also if you want to call me by name call me stealth

Anonymous

04/08/2012 at 02:39 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Ive even gone so far as to tell my industry friends about this site, just to spread the word

Our Take

Angelo Grant Staff Writer

04/09/2012 at 11:39 AM Reply | Permalink | Report

Really the only thing I want to see change about how Japan developed RPGs are handled is I don't want to see publishers throw out the baby with the bathwater. We could have potentially missed out on several innovative, well devoloped games because the vast majority people are just plain sick of the same old RPG's they've been playing since the 90's (see my over-saturation argument in the article.)  I can completely understand that.  If you're a bean counter, you would just lump everything in the genre togeather and decide it's not popular enough to invest in.  In reality, these games need to be investigated individually and judged on their own merits.  I can't say for sure that this isn't happening, but it sure looks that way.

Update on the advertising fail:  I picket up my pre-ordered game a the local Gamestop, put on my reporter hat, and asked a few questions.  The manager informed me that there were a grand total fo 4 copies of Xenoblade Chronicles pre-ordered at the Amsterdam store, including employees.  They also received no propaganda (posters, other advertising to display) for the game at all.  He actually went so far as to make his own using empty game boxes and magic marker.  I'm very serous about that.  In front of the register was an empty box on black backer board with the release date on a white sticker in marker.  That was literally the only marketing the game received.

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 08:39 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I wasnt going to post again but some of these newer comments annoyed me.

 

Your generalizing, and you really dont understand the market for these games

 

http://kotaku.com/5899489/no-jrpgs-are-not-stale-old+fashioned-archaic-obsolete-out-of-touch-rehashes?comment=48905776#comments

 

I recommend you read this too if you think all japanese rpgs are the same old

Angelo Grant Staff Writer

04/16/2012 at 11:00 AM Reply | Permalink | Report

I'm a little confused by this response.  You either didn't even read the post I made, or completely lack an understanding of market saturation.  The article you posted is actually very much in keeping what what I was saying, which is that there are lots of excellent RPGs that game from japan this generation, but they were overlooked because of oversaturation.

The problem with what I think you are trying to argue is that if you are, in fact, responding to my argument, you would have to believe that the supersaturation I'm referencing, and the opinion of gamers making the statements you object to, were formed in this, and only this console generation.  Truth be told, the saturation I'm talking about truly came during the previous two console generations, not the current one.  I even specifically pointed you to the 90's as the start of all this in my previous post.  The marketing strategies that cause publishers to overlook gems like Xenoblade and The Last Story are the fallout of standards that were set 20 years ago, and I very clearly stated that games need to be evaluated on their own merits, not on presuppositions that are over a decade old.

Our Take

Matt McLennan Contributing Writer

04/11/2012 at 08:41 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Time I put my two cents in this...

Mr. User-With-No-Name, I think its adorable you are trying to paint Nintendo as an RPG company when they haven't been one, EVER. Nintendo covers multiple genres, but in the entire history of Nintendo RPGs have been either flops or massive successes. Earthbound, one of my favorite SNES games, got (terribly) advertised and bombed so badly that we never got Mother 3. Golden Sun? Has its fans, but it will never be as popular as Pokemon or the Mario RPG games. Though in all honesty the Golden Sun series is really flawed, like on the level of Final Fantasy VIII...

The Operation Rainfall games themself, despite having probably one of the best fan driven petitions ever made, may be either a success or failure. While its fantastic Xenoblade is out (and its AMAZING), its in a market that ignores content like this; combined with the fact the gaming media did NOTHING to help Operation Rainfall (which my good Pietriots pal Grubdog went into in his article "Operation Rainfall's Biggest Challenge) and instead played the victim route; Xenoblade will NOT sell millions of copies, and NoA knew this. Could you blame them? Not one person asked about the three games at E3 2011.

Another problem is timing; the Wii is considered all but dead in North America and is constantly trolled as a result. NoA noticed this, so did NCL; even with its massive success, they look upon it as a disappointment. And remember Baten Kaitos? Both titles were released late into the Gamecube's life, were by the same developer, and they both flopped.

I want Xenoblade to succeed, I really do; combined with the gaming media who I know truly doesn't give a shit and fans who wouldn't buy it in the first place, I have my doubts.

Enjoy these games, we might never get games like these again.

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 08:31 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

Let me explain a few things to you

1) I never said nintendo was an rpg company but there is no denying they have produced the most rpgs this gen

2) GOlden sun is a massive success, not everything has to sell 50 million units, earthbound did not bomb, a bombed game is not one that is still talked about today. Mother 3 was fan translated quicker than you can say mincemeat pie............fans got it

 

3) "not one person asked about the three games at E3 2011." that isnt true

 

4) The wii was the top selling system in 2010, and the second highest selling system worldwide in 2011. Only a trol would call it dead............

Baten kaitos, more games that did extremely well

 

For future reference before you say a game flopped, you should know the sales history.

Anonymous

04/15/2012 at 08:42 PM Reply | Permalink | Report

I am posting this for the third time

http://kotaku.com/5899489/no-jrpgs-are-not-stale-old+fashioned-archaic-obsolete-out-of-touch-rehashes?comment=48905776#comments

You all should read this and feel embarrased for generalizing, ignoring fact, and really being ignorant

Japanese rpgs worldwide have never sold this much before, which is why more have been made than ever, and more have been localized

Quite frankly its the jrpg major players that all reside at the top of the revenue charts, nintendo, square, sega, konami, namco, ect

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