Square Enix President Talks About Bravely Default’s Success and How It Affects Future Game Development

bravelybanner
The president of Square Enix, Yosuke Matsuda recently talked to Nikkei Trendy about shifting the company’s focus back to heavy JRPGs and their core audiences. This is because the company was surprised by the success of Bravely Default in West because it mainly developed for Japanese audience. In the other hand, Hitman: Absolution, which was meant to appeal for wide global audience, struggled in sales.

More interesting the situation makes the fact Bravely Default was published and released by Nintendo in West. Without them it would have been very unlikely to see Square Enix releasing the game here. But times are changing which makes us wonder: Is Square Enix willing to publish Bravely Second by themselves after seeing the success of the first installment? Will this also encourage them bringing more Japanese audience focused titles in Europe and North America? If we are listening to the president, it sure seems like that!

During the interview, Nikkei asked if Square Enix have any global titles for smartphones in the mix of all their upcoming new games.

“Not just limited to games for smartphone or console, but we do have some global titles lined up,” Matsuda replied. “However, regardless of whether they’re for smartphone or console, there’s a difficult element to developing global titles, so we’ll be making them without focusing too much on the ‘global’ aspect.”

“For example, in the past, when we developed console games with a worldwide premise, we lost our focus, and not only did they end up being games that weren’t for the Japanese, but they ended up being incomplete titles that weren’t even fit for a global audience.”

Matsuda continues, “On the other hand, there are games like the JRPG we made for the Japanese audience with the proper elements, Bravely Default, which ended up selling well all around the world.” (Over 200 000 copies in North America alone in its first three weeks)

Yosuke Matsuda was also surprised by the fact JRPG fans can be found all over the world and how quickly fansites (That’s us!) report about Japanese announcements. He stated that they have decided to focus more on “heavy JRPGs” in the future.

“Due to having split [the development mindset] according to regions around the world, we weren’t able to see this clearly up until now, but fans of JRPGs are really spread around the world,” emphasizes Matsuda. “Through the means of various networks, the latest information that is announced in Japan is instantaneously being spread across fans throughout the world. Whether it’s North America, Europe, or South America. There really isn’t much of a gap [in the relay of information].”

“With that in mind, and all of the collective fans, there’s a sense of mass, which loses the image of a niche market,” continues Matsuda. “For the new games we’ll be developing from this point on, while this may sound a bit extreme, we’ve been talking about making them as heavy JRPGs. I believe that way, we can better focus on our target, which will also bring better results.”

Hitman-E312-Preview
After that, Matsuda talked about global aspects and how they may cause negative results if developers focus too much on reaching a wide global audience. That may lead to mistakes such as ignoring the core audience who they are making the game at the first place. For example, he believes they changed Hitman: Absolution too much in order to make it appeal for many people, and they didn’t pay enough attention to the core of the game, which pleased the fans. This ended up leading struggling sales. Thus Matsuda thinks it would be clever to take games back to their roots and focus on the core audience, the fans.

“If you focus too much on the global aspect, you might lose sight of who you’re actually making the game for,” explains Matsuda. “For example, if you look back at 2013, we’ve had some home console games made for a global audience that struggled.”

“The development team for Hitman: Absolution really struggled in this regard. They implemented a vast amount of ‘elements for the mass’ instead of for the core fans, as a way to try getting as many new players possible. It was a strategy to gain mass appeal. However, what makes the Hitman series good is its appeal to core gamers, and many fans felt the lack of focus in that regard, which ended up making it struggle in sales.”

“So, as for the AAA titles we’re currently developing for series, we basically want to go back to their roots and focus on the core audience, while working hard on content that can have fans say things like ‘this is the Hitman, we know’. I believe that is the best way for our development studios to display their strengths.”

 Thanks to Siliconera for making the original translation.

About these ads

Bravely Second – Jump Festa 2014 Trailer

It’s Jump Festa 2014 time! One of the biggest Japanese gaming culture events has started and new games news and trailers are fighting their way to the internet. The latest addition to Jump Festa news is Bravely Second trailer!

Bravely Second is a sequel for Bravely Default that was release on 6th December in Europe. (7th February 2014 in North American) Let’s start the weekend by relaxing and enjoying the new artwork, story and gameplay clips!

Be Brave

Bravely Default Sequel Announced

Square Enix has revealed in last week’s Jump issue the sequel for the Bravely Default, entitled as Bravely Second A new character can be seen below, whose name is Magnolia.

large

Bravely Default is now out in Europe and Australia and is due to come out on February 7th 2014 in North America. Keep your eyes peeled for more Bravely Second news updates in the future!

Bravely Default: Flying Fairy Delayed

Sad news for European gamers who were hoping for a new JRPG to their 3DS devices – Bravely Default: Flying Fairy has been delayed to 2014.  Today, Nintendo announced the delay of the game in their earnings report while reporting about the bad sales of Wii U, and the good ones of 3DS.

The new launch window for Bravely Default: Flying Fairy will be 2014 for both European and North American versions. The game was developed by Square Enix and released in Japan last year. Nintendo is in charge of the western release of the game.

Here is a sample song from the soundtrack: 

Bravely Default: Flying Fairy Original Soundtrack Preview

Bravely Default: Flying Fairy has been released this week in Japan. Like usually in Square Enix games, it has an incredible soundtrack. We have chosen few great tracks from the OST which are worth listening to build the hype. However the western release is still unsure, but it is highly possible that the game will be seeing the release here in EU and in USA.

Would you like to see the western release for Bravely Default: Flying Fairy? What did you like about these song? Comment your thoughts below!

New Bravely Default Trailer Released and New Demo Available on Wednesday (Japan)

THE NEXT DEMO

According to the latest issue of Jump the next Bravely Default demo will be available on Wednesday, August 1. And today Square Enix announced that at the game’s official site.

The demo will be called “Job and Ability Volume.” Players will be able to try out five jobs: Knight, Red Mage, Mystic Knight, Freelancer and Super Star. You’ll also be able to sample some character customization elements, including job change, job command setting and ability setting.

Ring Abel who appeared in Jump will feature in the demo too. Square Enix already release so shots from upcoming demo.


THE NEW TRAILER (mid-July)

Square Enix has released a brand new Bravely Default trailer on their official site showing new CGI and clips from battle system and world map. Check it out below!

Weekly Jump: New Bravely Default Character: Ring Abel

The latest issue of Weekly Jump shares brand new info about new character called Ring Abel. The magazine is saying that he is such a womanizer and tries to impress every pretty girl. He has lost his memory and acts to be a vagabond. He also owns “Notebook D” where the incoming future is foretold. Because the names of other main characters were written on this “Notebook D”, he joins and starts a new journey with them!

Thanks for the scan Aibo!

New Bravely Default: Flying Fairy Gameplay Details, Artwork And Screenshots (FFV-like Job System & Party Chat)

Dengeki Online has a new preview of Bravely Default Flying Fairy with lots of new gameplay details, screenshots and artwork.

BATTLE SYSTEM

Bravely Default will be using a job system. This system is said to be similar to Final Fantasy V’s, but with the element of costs added, allowing for greater customization.

You can use two types of abilities during battles: Job Commands and Support Abilities. Job Commands are standard commands that the character uses during battle — things like magic and attacks. Support Abilities are abilities whose effects are automatic without command input — things like +10% HP, or a knight’s ability to cover a party member who’s in trouble.

One of your Job Commands can be set with an ability that you have learned when playing as a separate role/job. Using this system, you can have a knight who uses white magic, and so on.

Your Support Abilities can also be set with support abilities that you learned from another job. Support Abilities use a cost system. You can freely set support abilities, regardless of their originating job, as long as you stay within cost. Using this system, you can take a weak white mage and use support abilities to build up the character’s HP and defense strength.

You earn new abilities when your job level rises, which occurs as you defeat enemies and acquire “JP” (Job Points). Jobs can be raised up to 10 levels.

PARTY CHAT

Your characters will engage in skits ala the Tales series. During these skits, the characters will talk about the current state of the story, various side bits, and even share strategies.When a skit is available, you’ll see “Party Chat” in the lower left of the screen. Press Y to view the skit. The game has a large number of skits, including some extremely rare ones.


Text from Andriasang

Bravely Default: Flying Fairy Collector’s Edition Revealed! (Looks awesome!)

Square Enix has revealed first shots of the collector’s edition for Bravely Default: Flying Fairy which will be released on October 11 for 3DS in Japan.

Collector’s edition includes:

- Game
- The Original Soundtrack
- Art Album
- AR Poster
- Original Projection Case for 3DS

The Collector’s Pack will be exclusively sold on Square Enix’s e-Store for ¥12,800.

 

New Bravely Default: Flying Fairy Screenshots, Artwork and Trailer Released!

This week’s screenshot update for the game includes lots of battle screens, some cool artwork and they also released a brand new over 20 minutes long gameplay footage! Check all of them out below!

This slideshow requires JavaScript.