Microsoft Aiming For Japanese Indies On Xbox One
The launch of the Xbox One in Japan this September – along with the console's roll out in many second tier countries – means that it will be opened up to a whole new audience, and that means that the system will need a whole new cache of games to appeal to that audience. In a new interview, the head of the ID@Xbox program spoke about how Microsoft has plans to attack regions outside of the U.S., when it comes to accommodating indie titles.
Total Xbox has a snippet from the interview with Chris Charla, the head honcho over the ID@Program, where he discussed what gamers in Japan and other EMEA regions could expect from the Xbox One's software line-up (where the console isn't already made available), saying...
"The amazing games we're seeing independent developers create are not limited to any geography. If I showed you a map with all the locations we've had applications from, it's almost every country on Earth. Where great games are getting made is around the world. Japan, the US, China, Belgium - there are amazing developers all over the world. It's pretty cool to see all those games on the way for ID@Xbox."
They name drop some of the expected titles to appear on the Xbox One from Japanese indie outlets, such as Comcept, the studio formed by former Capcom legend Keiji Inafune. Him and his team are currently working on Mighty No. 9, a Mega Man-clone of sorts that's actually aiming to become a brand new franchise all its own. Titles like The Mighty No. 9 will be key for gamers in other regions to accept the Xbox where Japanese-centric titles are expected.
One of the major problems, however, is that a lot of these games are multiplatform. Quite naturally, it's going to be an uphill struggle for Microsoft without some sort of exclusivity support and Charla is working on that, saying...
"I know there are games in development for ID@Xbox in Japan right now that haven't been announced - I can't announce them here as it's really up to the developers."
This offers some form of hope that the Xbox One won't be completely dead in the water in Japan. However, opposite of North America, Japan is currently being dominated through and through by Nintendo. The Wii U was once thought to be dead but it's made a big comeback in key territories and has resulted in Nintendo maintaining a lead over Sony and the PS4 in the eastern territories.
While Microsoft may be having a hard time battling Sony in Europe and in America with the PS4 maintaining a very strong lead over the competition every single month since its release, the Japanese scene is very dedicated right now to handheld devices and Nintendo platforms. Microsoft will be fighting against two very different markets with extremely diverse tastes.
The company plans on rolling out more announcements for their Japanese line-up as September draws near. Already, the launch line-up for the Xbox One in the land of the rising sun looks more impressive than its original debut in North America and the 12 other territories that it launched in last year.
The only question now is whether or not the Japanese audience will receive the Xbox One warmly or coldly?
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