A portion of an interview with Suda51:
Q: Square Enix president Yoichi Wada has told GamesIndustry.biz in the past that it’s increasingly important for Japanese companies to appeal more globally – how do you feel that events like Nordic Game help to bring different communities together?
Suda 51: Well, actually, Grasshopper is probably better-known in the Western market than in Japan, so these kind of events are really good for people in Western countries to understand us more. We released No More Heroes and Killer7 in the Western market so far, which also helps.
And then the people from GDC and Nordic Game give me the opportunity to speak, so I can talk more about the company, which is great for working in the global market.
Q: Does the Japanese videogames business need to appeal more to the West, do you think?
Suda 51: I’ve heard that a lot of the big publishers in Japan have already started working on how they can sell more games in the Western markets – they need to figure out how they can do that.
Q: Hardware and software sales in Japan have been very slow this year – why is that?
Suda 51: I think there are a number of reasons, but one of the main ones is that Western gamers and Japanese gamers prefer different content in their games. Maybe 2009 is showing us the reality of that.
Also, while the developers in Japan are really good at creating action games, they’re trying new genres. For example, role-playing games is one genre, although Western gamers seem to prefer different types of RPGs to those in Japan.
It’s not just RPGs – there are tonnes of different genres in Japan – but I guess Western gamers just aren’t quite so keen on those RPGs.
Q: When you design games, who do you think of? Is it a Japanese audience, a Western audience, or a global audience?
Suda 51: When I design a game, I imagine that people all over the world are playing it. We’re basically targeting a global audience.
For the whole thing, check out GamesIndustry.biz